Community, Fan Works

Sonic Fan Gaming Update

Over the years, Sonic fan games have certainly evolved from the days of Klik & Play. Back in 1995, Sonic Boom started it all, with collecting apples and avoiding bees… it was an amazing feat, being the first noted Sonic fan game, and today’s major fan games still provide that same sense of amazement only on a much bigger scale! As of recent, Sonic Fan Remix took center stage on the fan gaming scene. It ultimately changed the way fan games were thought of previously by the public; disposable projects on par with fan fiction. It caught the immediate attention of major gaming blogs, companies, and developers, so much in fact that Sega’s representatives requested Megaupload, the site which hosted the download file, to take down the file because they believed it would disrupt the sales of the then upcoming Sonic the Hedgehog 4 Episode 1.

Back in September, a video of the work-in-progress Chemical Plant Zone was shown by forum member and Sonic Fan Remix creator Pelikan13:

Recently, Sonic CD was ported to almost every platform imaginable, thanks to Christian “Taxman” Whitehead’s custom game engine, the Retro Engine, which at it’s early stages was a dedicated fan game engine. It blows me away, and a lot of other people I’m sure, to see one of the Sonic fan gaming scene’s very own make it to where most of us want, or wanted, to be… making or working on a tried-and-true Sonic game.

Three days ago, Sonic Retro forum member Andrew75 posted a work-in-progress engine test, Project AXSX, dedicated to faithfully recreating Sonic X-Treme, as well as a 3D version of Sonic CD. In the demo version that Andrew75 released, we see a test level of his Sonic X-Treme remake. It is as close to what anyone has seen of the original Sonic X-Treme, recreating the level design, camera, and movement of Sonic. It’s truly amazing, almost like seeing a tech demo of an official Sonic game! You can see his topic and the link to download here!

About a month ago, a new Sonic Before The Sequel was released to the public by LakeFeperd. I haven’t personally tried this one yet, but I’ve heard very, very good things. You can also find the topic and download here!

If you’d like to see more Sonic fan gaming projects and follow their progress, check out the Fan Gaming Forum!

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34 Comments

  • Reply

    When it comes to Sonic fan games, nothing tops Sonic Megamix, period.

    • Reply

      Megamix is a ROM hack. It is based on an existing Sonic game engine. Fan games are games created by utilizing the plethora of game maker programs out on the web, made from scratch or a fan-made engine template.

  • Reply

    There is also the fact that fan gaming projects have done things that SEGA said they couldn’t do.

  • Reply

    The AXSX engine is f*cking awesome!! I haven´t been so excited about an engine in a lot of time!! The graphics and gameplay in the demo are plain awesome, and it´s really fun!! Sonic Xtreme as we truly imagined it :)

  • Reply

    First of all, consider me something of an outsider – I’m not a fan game developer, or a member of your forums, and I don’t know the precise maths behind Sonic movement. But I’ve been a follower of the Sonic fan gaming scene for a decade, and I’ve always loved what I’ve seen. New exciting projects are constantly bettering what was already impressive before, and there’s so much potential bubbling up now for some amazing things. All of the above projects are unbelievable in their own ways, and I admire anyone who has the passion to put that much time and effort into anything.

    What I would like to do is raise one issue though. I wonder if the community has much more technical expertise than artistic and creative ability. The new Sonic Fan Remix Chemical Plant level, and also your ongoing Sonic 2 HD project raises such concerns. I can’t wait to play either – the Fan Remix project is like nothing ever seen before, and Sonic 2 HD appears to be a wonderful story of collaboration, from what I’ve seen of it. Both technically brilliant and highly polished, but why do such impressive projects have to be based on levels and ideas that we’ve already played before?

    Don’t get me wrong, I love an occasional new look on an old familiar setting – Sonic Generations was a wonderful game for that reason, but my biggest passion in general is Sonic levels. The way they differ in terms of their structure and their unique ideas for level-specific objects and enemies, and the way in which they can sometimes explore completely new, exciting locations that break away from the done-to-death beach level, the casino level, the flying fortress level, etc.

    I agree that this is all a hobby, and as a developer, you should only do what you really want to do. But I would love nothing more than to see a bit more originality, some new ideas rather than recycling old ones, as I feel it’s the only area that is lacking. SEGA can be as guilty of it as anyone sometimes, but for every Sonic 4 episode 1 or Sonic Generations, there are also games like Sonic Colours and Secret Rings, which open up whole new possibilities no one had ever dreamt of – a theme park/armoury made out of hamburgers and cakes.. ancient ruins floating on the backs of giant stingrays in the sky.. I can’t recall seeing many ideas like that in a fan game. If I tried, I could probably recall dozens of Green Hill clones however.

    I honestly don’t mean this to be aggressive, I’m more interested in supplying some food for thought. And of course, I am generalising massively – not every game is a copy of an official one, and I also understand there are hurdles. Not everyone is as talented an artist as they are a programmer, which is essentially the problem here really. It leads to many fan gaming levels being composed of chopped up sprites and level art from existing official levels, and though they may be combined very cleverly, it’s difficult to escape the thought that you’re just playing more of what you’ve already played before. I think I would honestly prefer playing a game that has less than perfect, though completely original graphics rather than one that is composed entirely of very polished, but also very familiar patterns and pieces of art.

    Through one engine or another, we’ve got Sonic physics pretty much pinned down. There are fewer and fewer bugs to turn a blind eye to, and one can start to expect the legitimate experience, or something very close to it, when sitting down with a new fan game or demo. As a Sonic fan though, to me, the physics go hand in hand with great level design, which encompasses the appearance, ideas and ‘soul’ of the level as much as it does the actual layout of it. If you’re a fan game creator looking for the next big challenge, this, I think, is it.

  • Reply

    Thanks , I’m glad you like it, but i wasn’t alone working on AXSX,
    Please don’t forget Xaklse who made Sonic GDK, which AXSX is built on. Without him and his hard work modding GDK this project would have been stuck with the older engine with had very bad performance.

  • Reply

    Before the Sequel was probably the most polished fan game I have ever played, but the level design of the Sonic portions was quite mediocre.

    If Falk goes on to make another game, I hope they’re more intricate like the Tails levels.

  • Reply

    BTS was made by LakeFeperd. I merely mirrored the topic on sonicretro because he didn’t have forum access at the time.

  • Reply

    Before The Sequel was actually pretty terrible. I don’t know why people are praising it. Then again, opinions and different tastes.

    It’s pretty amazing how far Fan Games have come though

  • Reply

    Kirby SUper Star for the win?

  • Reply

    LiQuidShade had a good point.

  • Reply

    The fan remix…that was just too awesome…ya know it sorta felt the same as when I first picked up Donkey Kong Country for the SNES for the first time…except here the graphix are 1000X better and its ofcourse SONIC LOL. As for Xtreme? If someone puts this together and gets it out there…hoh baby…we shall wait.

  • Reply

    I’ll admit it, I’m getting sick of Green Hill (and the original in general; Marble Zone sucks), but I think it comes from nostalgia and need for stability. Until very recently, Sega’s new mechanics were rather ham-fisted and poorly executed, while the fan games’ old-fashioned style was more…stable than Sega’s variable quality at that time. “Gunplay/werehogs/swordplay may rise and fall, but Green Hill stands forever”, you might say. Now that Sega is getting its act together, the fan games might seem less necessary.

    Personally, my favorite fan game is Sonic Robo Blast 2 (especially the Tortured Planet WAD). That’s a great fan game if you want something “different”. Eggman Hates Furries is pretty good too, although the ending had too much yaoi for me.

  • Reply

    Sonics Bible Adventure and Sonic Boom are betta. HA!

  • Reply

    You find in life that only a select few are capable of coming up with completely original and innovative ideas. There’s not as many as you’d hope, and those who have ideas aren’t necessarily great with other things, like organising a project to realise them.

    Fangaming as a whole has always had a fairly big problem – if you’ve got the skills to do something amazing… there’s a bigger incentive to use those skills to create something totally unique and sell it.

    And compared to Mario who was designed for multiple roles, Sonic only really tends to work well as a 2D platformer. I’ve never really seen a “good” 3D Sonic fangame – even that Xtreme remake seems to be focusing on fisheye lenses, which only benefit the X and Y axes.

  • Reply

    Erm. does Srb2 (Sonic Robo Blast 2) count because thats a pretty good Fan game

  • Reply

    Fan games are cool when they work, i only wish i could get them to work the only fan game I’ve played is sonic robo blast 2, i tried blitz sonic and sonic gdk, neither one works.

  • Reply

    I agree with this guy, before the sequel looked pretty bland in level design and the final boss was…well very unexciting, still my interset for it is still there.

  • Reply

    I’ve got a fan game officially in the works right now…

    Look for Sonic Trilogy: Enhanced in the Fangaming forum, on the pinned WIP topic… also search it on Facebook.

  • Reply

    If Sonic Fan Remix was a Remake of Sonic 2, I would say It seems farther along than the actual Sonic 2 HD. Which I haven’t heard anything from except the countdown to the trailer and a Demo Coming soon. More than 4-5 Second of Gameplay would be nice.

  • Reply

    Surprised Sonic The Fated Hour and Sonic Nexus weren’t mentioned XD

    • Reply

      You mentioned them; now they’re mentioned.

  • Reply

    Sonic Robo Blast 2, as lovely as it is (and it is lovely) still doesn’t really sell it the idea that “3D Sonic fangames” can work. In order to compensate for the immense speed of Sonic and chums, levels tend to be very big and very… empty. You don’t really get the feeling you’re exploring a world, just running past it.

    Obviously some of this comes from the fact it’s over a decade old and is derived from the engine powering Doom, but in order to give the user multiple paths its forced to leave wide open spaces everywhere. And it doesn’t attempt loops or ramps or anything that characterises 2D Sonic.

    Certainly one of the best soundtracks in fangame history though.

  • Reply

    ok wtf i was trying to reply to 1stkirbyever, watever

  • Reply

    @black squirrel i do i have to agree that srb2 does feel like your just running through levels (but is still very fun) there are good 3d sonic fan games like sonic gdk or blitz sonic

  • Reply

    The article says Project ASAX, but it’s AXSX.

    (Oh, and it also says “it’s” where it should be “its”. :P)

  • Reply

    Er…I’m a bit befuddled at all the praise Sonic Fan Remix is receiving. The physics look a bit wonky, the graphics are so-so, and the whole thing looks no more advanced than any of the higher-end MMF2 games we’ve seen for years. What am I missing in that Chemical Plant teaser that is so brilliant that it “changed the way fan games were thought of previously by the public”? I can think of a handful of other fangames worthy of that claim.

    • Reply

      The problem here is that you’re basing it off the one video of a WIP level. You sound like you haven’t played the demo or even seen a video of it, for that matter. Check out google for Sonic Fan Remix, bro.

  • Reply

    SBTS is actually a very polished fan game but the level design is very bland. There aren’t enough paths either. I like it and have not come across a glitch yet but the lack of paths can cause it to be boring at times. The boss fight are amazing :D.  One fan game I do like better even though it is less polished is Sonic Axiom because of the level design. There are many pathways to explore on each level although the glitches can kill the fun at times. I believe LakeFeperd and Vexer should work together eventually. Those two could make the perfect fan game.

  • Reply

    I don’t know if anyone knows, but sonic after sequel is a reality

  • Reply

    This game’s simply incredible! It’s a shame Sega doesn’t hire these developers, work with the Sonic Team and produce quality games like this one! 

  • Reply

    OMGOMGOMG BEFORE THE SEQUEL LOOKS AWESOME!!!! HECK YES!!!! I HAVE TO PLAY IT NAOOOO!!!!!!

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