Sonic the Hedgehog (Prototype)

Discussion in 'General Sonic Discussion' started by drx, Jan 1, 2021.

  1. We don't really have any way of knowing.

    Unlikely; scanning drawings into Digitizer format was rare enough that when it was done for Disney's Aladdin it was newsworthy.

    This is a major leap; it is also possible that they just... looked at the title screen/a screenshot and used it as a reference.
     
  2. Black Squirrel

    Black Squirrel

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    We actually know quite a bit about Sega's Digitizer System(s). It would have all been done as pixel art by hand. Third-parties had their own methods.
     
  3. KobaBeach

    KobaBeach

    kickin dirt like a hell raiser Member
    Mao Mao's one of my favorite characters and Max from Sam and Max is also kind of an adorable little piece of shit so complete assholes with shark teeth are really good in my eyes. It wouldn't have been as attractive to North American consumers though I feel, considering the look of western animation at the time. I feel like Europeans wouldn't mind it as much, due to a lot of weirder stuff coming out of our side of the globe as well as being exposed to some anime dubs here and there, particularily in Western and Central Europe.

    It's all about what's trendy, they were trying to cater to like North American aesthetics and giving Sonic a sort of grimmer edge that Mario's "safety scissors and pastel colors" appeal didn't have. I still prefer OVA and AoStH over SatAM wholeheartedly though lol
     
  4. Gryson

    Gryson

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    Related to this, I suspect the basis for all of the cover art was this model:

    [​IMG]

    This model was actually made early on. A sketch of it appeared in Sega's newsletter SPEC vol 7 in Nov 1990:

    [​IMG]

    The caption on the sketch reads "This looks exactly like the figurine in the development room!"

    So there's no exact date to it, but it appears before any of the cover art. Then the question: Which came first, the model or the title screen? It's possible that the model was made first in order to guide the illustrators, especially in regards to shading. The use of models like that was not uncommon.

    Anyway, I speculate that all of the cover art versions are based on this model, or a sketch of this model. Greg Martin must not have liked the crossed legs, though.
     
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  5. Probably late to the party, but has anyone noticed that the proto's robotnik end sign is different?
     
  6. Azookara

    Azookara

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    I don't think the cover art by Greg Wray had the model as reference, or else it wouldn't have made the circular shape of Sonic's head so pronounced. It seems like it's more obviously based on the title screen itself, considering how closely they fit into each other.

    [​IMG]

    (above: S1 beta title screen layered over the American box art)

    [​IMG]

    The circular head of the title screen could've also been a leftover of the sketch process that the digitizer thought was intentional, thus unintentionally creating mohawk Sonic as we know it. But considering the bump on the last frame's head separating the head from the spikes, it leaves me to wonder if these frames were done before or after they made the reference model? After all, it was done as early as TTS 1990. Strange, either way. Greg could've traced / looked closely at that drawing instead of the title screen, for all we know.

    It doesn't explain how the arm is posed exactly the same way though, I'll say that.

    Either way, I think it's worth saying Sega of America didn't have the reference figure that Sonic Team had. Otherwise I don't imagine STI would've made Sonic's sprites in Sonic 2 occasionally have the mohawk (let alone three rows of it). That is, unless SoA found themselves preferring the mohawk and pressed for it.. but considering they were shifting away from it as early as 1994, I don't think that's the case. At least not like it was for Robotnik's design.
     
    Last edited: Jan 15, 2021
  7. Blue Spikeball

    Blue Spikeball

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    The head matches the title screen, but the rest is closer to the model, particularly the pose. My guess is that the title screen, the model and the US box art all used the same concept art as a basis -- probably an early version of this before they tweaked the quills.
     
    Last edited: Jan 16, 2021
  8. Brainulator

    Brainulator

    Regular garden-variety member Member
    I want to say that model lines up more with the Sonic CD title screen, given the facial expression and position of his arms relative to his head:
    [​IMG]
     
  9. biggestsonicfan

    biggestsonicfan

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    Not to derail the thread, but I feel that this should be made more prominent and well known somehow. It's incredibly fascinating.
     
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  10. Pengi

    Pengi

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    That model was the basis for the Sonic CD title screen:

    https://twitter.com/NaotoOhshima/status/847129714649018368
    https://twitter.com/NaotoOhshima/status/847104354020552706

    http://shmuplations.com/soniccd/

     
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  11. LocalH

    LocalH

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    Hmm, nice find. Just a single pixel in what looks like a mirrored tile (ignore the color level differences)

    [​IMG]
     
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  12. Blastfrog

    Blastfrog

    Cranky Cynic Member
    So they touched up one pixel and still didn't bother to draw the yellow cape stripes on his torso? And what's with the weird tendency for them to leave out details like that in Sonic 1 anyhow, including the stripeless shoe on the monitor icon and springing frame?
     
  13. Brainulator

    Brainulator

    Regular garden-variety member Member
    Yup, those tweets were exactly what I was thinking of! They just escaped me at that moment.

    As for the signposts... I can't tell the difference, honestly.
     
    Last edited: Jan 17, 2021
  14. His glasses I think. But I was really talking about this: 20210116_230843.jpg Here is the image I was talking about. It's on the cutting room floor in the star light section of the proto, but no one's mentioning it. Is it just a mistake on the uploader's part? I don't know. For reference, there's also a pic of the final right next to it, and this is what it looks like: 20210116_230905.jpg
     

    Attached Files:

  15. Fadaway

    Fadaway

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    Mouth
     
  16. Blastfrog

    Blastfrog

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    No, that's just bad scaling. The only difference is that the final adds just one extra bright dot on his glasses, that's it.
     
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  17. Nik Pi

    Nik Pi

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    Ladies and gentlemen-hype is over! It's funny to see how the discussion turned from theories about the background of the LZ to whether Sonic had fangs or not) I've been thinking...... Is it possible that signpost and monitor using Eggman are remnants of concept art from the time before the Tokyo show build? On the monitor, this is noticeable, because there are blue stripes of the cape from the concept art. My theory about signpost: spearly.png
     
    Last edited: Jan 17, 2021
  18. Black Squirrel

    Black Squirrel

    this is what KLF is about Wiki Sysop
    I've checked every level - the Eggman signposts in the prototype are identical to the final game. I don't know where that lightest blue has gone in the image above, but I'm not seeing a difference in-game:

    [​IMG]
     
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  19. Diablohead

    Diablohead

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    I guess stuff like missing white shoe stripes and eggmans cape were minor compared to getting the game complete, but odd how those were never fixed in the japanese release, I guess after release and a few minor things they moved on straight away and just didn't worry about the minor errors.
     
  20. Hez

    Hez

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    After playing sparkling zone a few times, I totally understand the background change. We like it at the moment because it's different than what we are used to seeing. But man, is it distracting and over all pretty poor.
     
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