Sonic Through Time

Sonic Through Time-Custom Controllers UK

Sonic The Hedgehog is one of the most well-known video game characters, notorious for his supersonic speed and iconic dark blue colouring. The public was first introduced to Sonic in 1991, where he debuted on the Sega Genesis, the home video game console developed and sold by Sega. Now, over 30 years later, Sonic is an admired character adored by millions all over the world! With over 30 Sonic mainline video games and multiple Sonic movies, it is clear that the Sonic franchise is huge!

That’s why in this blog, we take a journey through the Sonic franchise video games, where we will explore the most influential and popular Sonic games in the timeline.


Sonic The Hedgehog – 1991:

The first Sonic mainline game was debuted in 1991 with Sonic The Hedgehog. It was the first Sonic game in the ever-going 30 yearlong franchise. In this 2D platform game, the game focusses on a 2D pixellated Sonic character running horizontally across the continually moving screen. The gameplay operations were very basic, players had to travel through 6 zones within a certain amount of time and overcome any obstacles or enemies along the way. Unlike the Mario games where collecting the highest points was the concept of the game, in Sonic it was all about getting the lowest time score.

Sonic The Hedgehog was created with replayability in mind, with multiple pathways and different secret areas for players to go back and discover. Unlike all the other Mario inspired games, Sega wanted to make something that stood out and was competition to Mario, which it was!

Sonic was the first time a company was able to compete directly with Nintendo, who had dominated the gaming industry for the last 10 years.

Sonic the hedgehog 1991

Sonic Eraser – 1991:

Sonic Eraser was the first spin off Sonic game in the series also released in 1991. It was a simple Tetris inspired puzzle game where colourful geometric shapes dropped from the top of the screen which had to be matched up with other shapes to clear the screen. The game had 4 different modes, Normal, Round, Doubt and Block.

Sonic Eraser was originally released in 1991 however, after not gaining as much popularity it was re-released in 2004 where its awareness began to grow and expand.

Sonic eraser 1991

Sonic 2 – 1992:

Sonic 2 is the official sequel to the original game, released 1 year after the first was created. Similar to the first, the side scrolling, platform game was based around speed and introduced a new character, Tails, who helped with collecting rings scattered through the 10 different game zones.

A slight difference in this game was that the storyline was slightly more developed. Sonics goal throughout this game is to complete the mission to stop the evil Robotnik from taking over the world.

Sonic 2 1992

Sonic Drift - 1994:

1994 introduced Sonic fans to the first driving themed game in the franchise. Moving away from the platform speed running and focussing on 2D speed racing, like a classic driving video game, players had to race around the track against other characters trying to get into first position.

Sonic drift 1994

Knuckles Chaotix – 1995:

After all the Sonic games and the introduction of new characters like Tails. It was time Sega gave another one of its characters the spotlight. Knuckles Chaotix was the first Sonic franchise game where not only was Sonic not mentioned in the game title, but he was also not the main focus of the game. Players are introduced to Knuckles, now infamous in the Sonic universe, and had to complete 5 different levels in under 10 minutes. The five different levels were all set at different time periods of the day and had a very original concept compared to the past Sonic games.

Although being considered quite unique, the game wasn’t as well known or successful as past or future games. Many of its gameplay features were abandoned after this game and were not seen in any future Sonic game again. Although Knuckles didn’t succeed in his own inspired game, he was still a beloved character and one of Sonics best friends and sidekicks in future games.

Knuckles chaotix 1995

Sonic 3D Blast – 1996:

1996 bought a life of 3D to Sonic. Sonic 3D Blast was the first 3D game in the series, where characters appeared a lot more spherical rather than pixellated and the playing field was more isometric. In the game, players had to collect birds called Flickies by defeating enemies.

What was so loved by fans with this new 3D mode was that players were no longer restricted to following the same horizontal path, they could walk around and explore the world they were in and had more control over what their character could do.

Sonic 3d blast 1996

Sonic Adventure 2 – 2001:

2000 bought better graphics, better storyline and better gameplay for Sonic fans. In 2001, Sega released Sonic Adventures 2, which was designed to be faster-paced and more action orientated than past games. Visuals were a lot clearer on this game and the overall concept of the game was action themed.

Gamers had to play as Sonic and work alongside Tails, Knuckles and Amy to help stop the evil Eggman from conquering the world.

Sonic Adventure 2 2001

Sonic The Hedgehog Mobile – 2005:

With the development of the mobile phone, it wasn’t going to be long until a mobile version of Sonic was created. In 2005 Sonic The Hedgehog Mobile released, which was the first Sonic game to be available on a phone. The plot of the game was similar to the console-based games; however, it was all just displayed on a mobile instead.

Some features were added to the game however though, including unlimited continues and save features and new difficulty options including very easy, easy, and normal.

Sonic the hedgehog mobile

Sonic Generations – 2011:

20 years after the original game was introduced, acclaimed by fans to be the ‘best 3D Sonic game in the series’ with ‘the best graphics’, Sonic Generations was released. The game was still a side scrolling platform game however with some 3D featured levels.

This 2011 game included 2 gameplay styles including classic and modern which players could choose between to play.

Sonic Generations 2011

Mario And Sonic At The London 2012 Olympic Games – 2012:

2012 bought a lot to the table for the gaming industry. And 2012 was also huge for Sega. Mario And Sonic At The London 2012 Olympic Games was released, which was the first ever Mario and Sonic, Nintendo and Sega crossover which took gamers by storm.

Mario and Sonic was the first ever character crossover, where players had to work together to defeat Bowser and Dr Eggman with the help of other familiar Sega and Nintendo friends. The game was also based on a real event, the London 2012 Olympic Games, with the game being released on the WII and 3Ds during this time.

What was so special about this game besides the iconic crossover was that the game was available on the Nintendo 3Ds, so players could not only play the 3D game, but they could also visually experience the game in 3D with the consoles 3D switch option.

Mario and sonic and the London 2012 Olympic games 2012

Sonic Origins Plus – 2023:

Finally arriving in present day, the most recent Sonic franchise game is Sonic Origins Plus, being released in 2023. This game is a classic Sonic game following the same concept, it was redefined and reintroduced in the 2D style gameplay.

Sonic origins plus 2023

With all the hype and popularity around the Sonic games, it is clear that the series isn’t ending any time soon.

In fact, Sega has recently announced their new Sonic game, Sonic Superstars, which has been rumoured to be released in the autumn of 2023.


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