Sonic the Hedgehog 2 Articles RSS Feed | Sonic the Hedgehog 2 RSS Feed on en Launch Media Network Sonic Mania Better Recapture the Magic of These 4 Classic Sonic Games Thu, 03 Aug 2017 11:23:31 -0400 Adreon Patterson


Sonic CD


As the best-selling game on the ill-fated Sega CD, Sonic CD was a game-changer in the Classic Sonic era. 


Its high-quality soundtrack and brilliant visuals took everything about Sonic up a notch, and it received praise from critics and fans alike. Two features -- the time travel system and time attacks -- threw everyone for a loop in terms of gameplay. And pretty much everyone loved this fresh Sonic experience.


The game was so acclaimed and beloved that it influenced the Sonic comic series and subsequent Sonic releases.




The nostalgia of these games makes it even more apparent that Classic Sonic is needed in today's gaming world. There's nothing like a seeing a spinning blue ball revving up against beautiful 2D graphics, accompanied by a well-curated soundtrack. Hopefully, Sonic Mania can recapture the magic everyone's favorite blue hedgehog seems to have lost over the years.


What are your favorite Classic Sonic games? Do you think Sonic Mania can live up to the hype of long-time series fans? Let me know down in the comments!


Sonic the Hedgehog 3


The final chapter of the original Sonic trilogy was released in 1994, along with companion game Sonic and Knuckles. Upon its release, Sonic the Hedgehog 3 was praised for its amazing visuals, special stages, and sound effects.


Sonic 3 managed to expand upon Sonic 2's progression by using 3D in the special stages and introducing new, more elaborate zones and backgrounds. The game improved upon Sonic's mechanics in lieu of challenging zones like Carnival Night and Launch Base.


For many fans, this entry served as the apex of the Classic Sonic era.


Sonic the Hedgehog 2


As the sequel to the original Sonic the Hedgehog, Sonic the Hedgehog 2 was a blockbuster for Sega in the console wars against Nintendo and its iconic character, Super Mario. This game improved on everything from the original -- cinematic music, larger zones with colorful graphics, better mechanics, and of course, the introduction of Tails.


With the addition of Tails, a new feature was introduced to the game -- two-player mode. At the time of the game's release, this was revolutionary for the platformer genre. While the feature received mixed reviews, it set the stage for many Sonic games to come.


With a total of 6 million copies sold, this release's legend grew over the years from the momentum of the original, and is remembered as a worthy successor in the series.


Sonic the Hedgehog


Sonic Team and Sega owe a great deal to the OG game in the Sonic franchise, as it set the blueprint for the series while propelling the company into the big leagues of video gaming. In 1991, Sega released the game alongside its Genesis console to worldwide popularity that rivaled Nintendo's Super NES.


Upon its release, Sonic the Hedgehog was praised for its fast gameplay, colorful, detailed graphics, and amazing soundtrack.  At the time, Sonic was faster and brighter than Mario and allowed players to do more than run and jump in the platformer genre.


At 15 million in sales and a reputation as one of the greatest video games, Sonic's legacy is still felt in everything from gaming animal mascots to animation to comics to merchandising.


Words like "excited" and "overjoyed" can't begin to describe the hype for a new Sonic game featuring the old-school 2D blue hedgehog. When Sonic Team announced Sonic Mania's August release, every old-school fan lost their mind over the thought of seeing Sonic in the Green Hill Zone again.


Sonic Mania is a blessing for many older Sonic fans who have dreamt of getting to play 2D Sonic once again. Though Modern Sonic is great in his own way, old-school fans have felt cheated by the lack of control and personality of his 3D games. They've begged Sega and Sonic Team for years to release something in the vein of the original games that made them love the character in the first place. And those companies must've heard the fans' cries, as Classic Sonic is coming back just in time for the blue hedgehog's 25th anniversary.


As fans anticipate the release of Sonic Mania, Classic Sonic brings back childhood memories for many millennials. With all this Sonic nostalgia, let's have a look at some of the best of Classic Sonic games that we hope have inspired this throwback entry in the franchise. 

Interview With Ivy Tenebrae Sun, 05 Mar 2017 17:03:28 -0500 DannyPTP

Recently, I was lucky enough to get an interview with the wonderful Ivy Tenebrae, a cosplayer, and Youtuber from the United Kingdom. I asked her a few questions about these two aspects of her life, as well as a few others pertaining to gaming and the industry at large.

Let's hear what she has to say!

GameSkinny (Danny): Who are you?

Ivy Tenebrae: That's a really tough question! I find it hard to pigeonhole myself because I have so many interests! But my main work is in cosplay and modelling. I have a home studio and model pieces for designers and create my own cosplays. I enjoy, particularly, portraying characters I love and giving them life. I try to put everything into what I do and it means a lot that people enjoy my work. I also love gaming and play as much as I can (mostly League of Legends these days) but I'm always wishing I had more time to play!

GS: When did you start cosplaying?

IT: I started cosplaying a few years ago. I actually took a break from modelling and on my first shoot back, (which was with a huge snake!) I decided to take along a Halloween costume I made of Poison Ivy (hence the name ivy) and I stumbled across the cosplaying world. The rest is history!

GS: Who/What inspired you to start?

IT: As I say it was completely by accident that it began. The likes of Yaya Han and Jessica Nigri were the main inspirations I found. Over time the list has grown people like Kristen Lanae, Kristen Hughey, Leanna Vamp and Vera Bambi all really inspire me. 

GS: What is it you do on YouTube?

IT: My YouTube channel is a mix of reviews, unboxing videos, how to videos, behind the scenes of shoots, recorded gaming sessions and me being a general goof. I love the platform and hope to work more on cosplay looks, including the make up aspect in the future.

GS: Out of the cosplays you have done, what are your favorites?

IT: That's another really tricky question!! Hmm, probably my Janna and Leblanc from League of Legends as they have the most detail so far. But I do very much enjoy working with my favourite cosplay latex designer, Strait Laced Latex. She has created some beautiful pieces for me to model and I can't wait to show everyone what we have in store next!

GS: What cosplays do you have planned?

IT: Including the project above which I can say is a series of cosplays, I am planning on a Hextech Janna this month. I have a Daphne from Scooby Doo, Raven Bombshell, Fiora from League, Academy Ahri from League, Batgirl and a few others ready to shoot. My main project is a Blood Moon Diana that I've started. It's going to be my most ambitious project yet in its detail.


GS: First video game?

IT: I'm going to show my age here! My first video games were things like Pong, Space Invaders, Pac Man and Centipede on the Atari. My most memorable games after that were Super Mario Bros 3 and Sonic 2. I played them so much they often made me late for school! Another game I loved was Doom I still have the original floppy disk!

GS: Favourite video game series?

IT: My favourite game right now has to be Diablo 3 I think. I just loved the campaign and finding those legendries. I'll play that through again soon when I get chance. I currently have Resident Evil 7 to play though and I am so excited for it!

Well, there we go. Hopefully, you've found out a bit more about Ivy and are interested to find out even more by looking her up!

Ivy's Print Store

Ivy's Twitter

I'd like to thank Ivy Tenebrae for the fantastic opportunity to interview her and for putting aside her time to answer my questions. I hope I get another chance soon.

Do you know of Ivy's work? Did you learn anything new about her? Let us know in the comments!

Can a Game be Truly Timeless? Wed, 24 Jun 2015 02:30:01 -0400 Matt Amenda

Nothing that man can make is ever truly deathless. Cathedrals crumble to dust. Paintings grow moldy and forgotten. As you read this, your books are yellowing and rotting away. Even those indestructible Super Nintendo cartriges will someday be landfill.

But some works of art never seem to die or go out of style. The Mona Lisa's smile has captured our imaginations for centuries despite the invention of photography and 3D imaging. While thousands have tried to imitate and update the works of Shakespeare, we still flock to theaters to see the originals. Even without CGI, high-definition cameras, or even color film, Casablanca remains one of the most beloved films of all time.

But what about video games? Unlike other mediums of art (and I need not  elaborate, they are art), video gaming lacks the long history of tradition necessary to determine, through retrospect, which specimens are masterpeices fit to withstand the test of time. Film, one of the younger major mediums, has nearly 175 years of history to pour over, whereas video gaming's most distant ancestry only stretches back to the 1940s, and gaming for public use started as recently as the 1970s. The Magnavox Odyssey might seem like something out of the Stone Ages to most gamers, but compare gaming's lifespan to painting's Lascaux Caves or architecture's Machu Picchu, and suddenly it looks like our favorite medium is still in daipers. We haven't the time to observe the long-term impact that video games might have.

Nintendo World Championships 1990 CartidgeA Nintendo World Championships 1990 Cartidge, now immortalized as a museum piece.

All of us have our lists of games that we think were great, are great, and will always be great. But the question remains:

Can video games be truly timeless?

I'm right in the middle of playing through Final Fantasy VII, and unlike a lot of my friends, I never got to play it as a kid. I bought it off Playstation Network, nostalgia goggles not included. I find the music to be awesome, the settings imaginative, and the story and dialogue great. But playing this legendary 1997 game in 2015, very little else holds up. The graphics are primitive, the movement is slow and clunky, and the turn-based gameplay is extremely dated.

Video games, as a medium that relies on cutting edge technology, usually age about as well as 8-tracks and bell-bottoms did: kind of good and funny in their own way, but only for their retro appeal. But I bring up Final Fantasy VII because in spite of all it's age-related shortcomings, it is still touted by most as one of the greatest games of all time. Also in spite of those cons I mentioned, I have to agree with them. Not because it's retro, but because it has qualities that never grow old.

A unique setting is always magical


While it's pre-rendered potato backgrounds and blocky models certainly haven't aged well, the city of Midgar is still one of the most memorable settings I've ever been in. It was some parts Blade Runner's Los Angeles, some parts Akira's Neo-Tokyo, some even a touch of Fritz Lang's Metropolis. It is the signature cyber-punk setting, even through all the ugly graphics. As in all great gaming worlds, it's the design of the place that continues to shine, not the details. 

When will sprinting along a pipeline as Sonic in Chemical Zone fail to thrill us? When will leaping and bounding across Yoshi's Island as Mario lose its joy? When will rising over an underwater mountain and beholding Bioshock's Rapture ever cease to amaze me? 

Sometimes the experience of a game is less about the things you do and more about the places you do them in. What is a grand adventure without a harrowing and fantastic world to quest in? No matter what era they're in, designers are always limited by their tools. But lovingly-crafted worlds will always retain their wonder.

A compelling story never gets old

A good setting is like good soil. When you have good soil to plant in, good fruits are sure to sprout. And that fruit is the story. Once you have a fascinating setting, good stories come easy.

Final Fantasy VII is no exception. I haven't finished the game yet so I can't spoil anything, but the opening alone was enough to amaze me:

We are presented with Midgar in all its dark, filthy glory. A shining metal tower rises haughtily against the blackened sky, while the lower city huddles miserably below in the dark. At a quiet train station, a gang of disheveled but colorful rebels leaps of a train and incapacitates the guards. A now-famous spiky-haired blonde flips onto the platform, and the game begins.

I said the graphics were primitive, and they are. But the skillful cinematic presentation of the setting that is awe-inspiring. The themes of class division and out-of-control greed are made abundantly clear in these opening shots without any words of exposition. The state of the world you're in, the motivation of your rebellion, and the consequences of failure are all laid out quickly and masterfully. When a game starts this explosively in a setting this cool, I can't help but be drawn in.

It's stories and experiences like these that keep players coming back to games for generations. In any medium, in any time, in any language, a good story is universal.

A stirring song keeps us remembering

As all these Final Fantasy VII cyberpunk shenanigans wouldn't be complete without Nobuo Uematsu's musical genius behind it. His FF songs are one of the many, many, many things that people love about the whole series. Everything from the quirky old Chocobo song to the unforgettable Sephiroth theme, and of course that "Tatata taaaa, ta ta, ta tataaaaaa" victory chime: nobody forgets that.

As I mentioned in a previous article, good music is not just important to a game's experience, it is essential. The music is what gets you in the right mood and mindset as you play. Especially when you get someone who consistently cranks out legendary and catchy tunes like Uematsu.

The lovely thing about stories and music and things is that they're not dependant on technology to be great. You can make beautiful music with anything.

Men and women like him make sure that we remember how a game feels long after we stop playing it. 

Take most of the VGM made today for the big block-buster games, with all the best orchestras and MIDI tech that money can buy. In spite of all their production values, there is not a moment in recent memory where I played a high-budget game and heard a song worth remembering.

Then take the Super Mario theme. It was composed by one dude with a keyboard with only 8-bit sound available. That dude was Koji Kondo, and the mere mention of his song has it stuck in your head already.

Men and women like him make sure that we remember how a game feels long after we stop playing it. The first few notes of a great theme song has the power to bring us right back to our favorite adventures as if we had never left. And so we do come back, eager to let the wave of music and color and adventure wash over us once more, because a heavenly song is hard to forget.

So can a game be timeless?

Of course not. Nothing is timeless. Especially not games. But as with any other form of art, they can be unforgettable. They can be as breathtaking as the columns of Petra, as spellbinding as A Midsummer Night's Dream, and as rapturous as Beethoven's 9th. In this tiny epoch of time we've had to enjoy and learn from our games, masterpieces have already revealed themselves. Whether or not our favorite games turn into legends will all be revealed in time.

Or landfill.