We all know the story. 19 years ago, everyone was getting super excited about the upcoming release of Sonic X-treme, which would mark Sonic’s first fully three dimensional adventure. Long story short, the game was never released, and the Sega Saturn always had a hole in its library, no main Sonic title ever being released.
While bits and pieces of what the game would have been have leaked/been released over the the years, last November JollyRodger showed up with a plethora of material from defunct gaming studio Point Of View, including the source code for a variety of Sonic X-treme builds on both the Saturn and the PC. Being as the code could only run natively on hardware very few people have access to, Jolly took it upon himself to begin the process of porting the code to modern PC’s. Earlier tonight, the first public release of this labor of love was been released, “version 037” of X-treme now fully operational.
Download links and more after the jump.
Now, before downloading, keep in mind that this is an early build of the game. Only one level is up and running, and it’s still clearly in the early stages. But for those who have wondered these many years just how the game was meant to be, this first taste will satisfy that longing never fully satisfied back in ’96.
Here’s the description that Andrew75, Sonic Retro’s resident X-treme X-pert, posted in the announcement thread on the forums:
Sonic X-treme’s Version 037 engine has been painstakingly ported to Modern Windows and Open GL by JollyRoger, from Windows 95 and also required the NV1 Graphic’s card hardware..
And Guess what ?! This port of X-treme is out there right now! Ready for “YOU” to download and enjoy!
However, We’d like to point out that this is a single level release.( More builds and levels to come later !)
We would also like you to know that this is an almost as is port of the engine (Almost as how the original developers had left it, A snapshot in time “if you will”.
This first public release consists of a Jungle level, which I like to refer to as “The E3 Jade Gully level” since it was shown in one of the E3 96 Promo videos.
*JollyRoger had to massage much of the code back into place to restore functionality since some code had been commented out due to being in mid engine re-wright by STI or POV.
*The game ran on the NV1 GPU by Nvidia, supported true Quad polygons (Like Sega Saturn) instead of quads made up of 2 triangles.
*Currently the port lacks true quad polygon rendering, *check out the sides of slopes where the textures look distorted*
Future releases may or may not incorporate true quad like rendering to fix the issue.
*The level data file itself had to be edited to improve physics to the point of playability, As well as remove ring collisions so the level could be explored properly. ( rings would push sonic off ledges if he walked near them)
*The Bouncing ball effect when sonic Lands can be disabled. Which allows for better playability, but in this case it was kept to better match the E3 Videos.
*You guys can tweak physics quite easily by opening the .def files in your text editor of your choice.
*I had attempted to fix up the Sonic Magnetic effect so as to help Sonic better when rotating the level in ball mode. This was tried so that it wouldn’t sling shot sonic over the edge of sharp angles when rotating the levels.
I did have it fixed so that the slingshot no longer happened, but it caused other issues with Gravity, and gravity relative to jumping (causing low jump heights), Jumping near walls and celling would cause sonic to stick to objects incorrectly.
Many of these could be remedied by counter balancing with other tweaks, however after 3 days worth of trying, I just could not find a sweet spot that replicated the feel of the E3 video gameplay clips without the rotation sling shot flying issue.
(so we had to give up fixing the Magnetic level rotations in favor of better play Mechanics. ( perhaps one of you may be able to find that sweet spot)
* More Builds and levels to come !