View Full Version : Never-Before-Seen Sonic Arcade Game Found

02-04-2016, 10:44 PM

So the guy who dumped two prior Sonic arcade games has found an unreleased arcade Sonic.

02-05-2016, 01:37 AM
Interesting. Looking forward to this. Reminds me of that unlicensed Somari parody.

02-05-2016, 06:18 AM
It's a prototype of SegaSonic the Hedgehog...


02-05-2016, 11:19 AM
Looks interesting enough based on a single screenshot, I wonder what the premise is.

02-05-2016, 11:40 AM
Why would a Sonic prototype be on an arcade pcb?

02-05-2016, 11:55 AM
Because SegaSonic the Hedgehog was an arcade game:


02-05-2016, 12:34 PM
It's a prototype of SegaSonic the Hedgehog...


This was going to be my guess based on the colors of the various Sonics who got morphed into Mighty and Ray. Neat.

Why would a Sonic prototype be on an arcade pcb?

See above.

02-05-2016, 12:39 PM
Since that screenshot looks like the original Sonic game and the arcade game is so different, I thought that it was supposed to be a Sonic 1 prototype, since SegaSonic the Hedgehog was the early and not-so-early name of it.

02-05-2016, 12:43 PM
They've dug up a hint of this existing from a letter in EGM. It doesn't prove it's real of course but here it is anyway. I think the rumor that Sonic CD was Sonic 2 at this point is kind of funny anyway.

I also have to laugh at "Color GameBoy Nears Completion" since everyone from back then knows it ended up being being GameBoys with colored outer shells. :lol:


02-05-2016, 01:48 PM
More evidence that this is a new game:


And I wonder if we'll get info on SegaSonic Cosmo Fighter and Sonic and the Jewel of Mystery.

02-05-2016, 02:59 PM
Yeah looks like it's not a prototype after all.

02-05-2016, 10:13 PM
I'm surprised as well.

Hardcore Gaming 101 has commented about it being similar to the Game Gear game Popils. https://twitter.com/HG_101/status/695703755027849217

I guess we'll see if we get more screenshots or the ROM ever gets dumped.

02-05-2016, 11:20 PM
New screenshot.


02-06-2016, 11:12 AM
A quick and incomplete translation from user 0xffffffff on Sonic Retro of a 2014 post about this game that was dug up, for those not following over there:

"A is for Arcade"
#15 'Sonic Brothers' (1992, Sega)

Mitsuji Fukio, known as MTJ and for the design of games like 'Puzzle Bobble,' 'Sylvalion,' and 'Omega Fighter,' was the director of 'Sonic Brothers.' Though he designed and developed the game, it was cancelled after the location test and was never brought to market.

I can only remember playing it a few times, but it seems there aren't many people who have written down their memories of the game, I'll attempt to describe it as I remember it. I'd be happy if any who knows the game could point out any errors:

The game was a falling-block puzzle game using 'Sonic the Hedgehog' (similar to Tetris or Puyo Puyo).

The multi-colored Sonics in round spin attack form

In a 田 shaped block, a set of 4 fall downwards. You can rotate the block, and they will pile up at the bottom, and when Sonics of the same color surround a different colord Sonic, it disappears.

This can happen by forming a ring with the same colors or by using the walls. I've drawn the possible scenarios below. This character ■ (Same color) represents the Sonics that surround (which can be any color) which are Sonics that will disappear:

Using the bottom

Using bottom + one side

Using bottom + both sides

Not using the bottom (for example, making a ring) might have been allowed too, and I think you could drop one block to complete two enclosures at once, but I can't quite recall what would happen in that case (but I imagine that they disappeared in any case like that).

If you're a puzzle game lover, you can probably imagine the game was a bit frustrating and difficult. If you make just one mistake with placement, your plan will fall apart, and it's extremely difficult to start stacking over again. It's also problematic that there so many blocks, since they come down in fours.

Since the surrounded blocks can be any color, as a bit of advice, it becomes extremely important to pay attention to the color as the game progresses. It's infuriating to throw away a block when it turns out you needed it, --unsure--

Not just limited to the falling blocks, the game further adopted the concept of 'encircling.' While playing, (according to the rules) while keeping track of the situation inside and outside of the boundaries, it's necessary to follow the tracks of the boundary line. It's a difficult game where your eyes have to take in wide scope of things all at once. That concept reappeared in some later, released games.

That's about all I remember of 'Sonic Brothers.' There may also been a kind of support item that looked like the gems from 'Coumns,' but I can't recall.

I think a more polished example of the 'Sonic Brothers' idea is the Taito game 'Cleopatra's Fortune.' The encircling idea greatly resembles it, but the parts that surround and can be surrounded are different, and there's much easier to understand gameplay.

I think MTJ's forte as a designer is to start with a single catchy idea and forcing it to work as problems arise.

-- unsure --

I had only played the game a few times, and there are no materials, so the rules and such might differ from how it actually was. I'd appreciate any knowledge anyone has about it.

I think it's awful that I won't get to experience 'Sonic Brothers' once more. It might be amusing to program a game with the same structure..

So yeah, seems like this was ultimately a fairly unremarkable puzzle game that didn't test well. Still a very cool discovery.

02-06-2016, 03:45 PM
I wouldn't be surprised if somebody eventually throws together a homebrew of this given the screenshot and the description.

02-06-2016, 05:50 PM
It's funny that you guys mention it being like Popils, as I had been interested in trying it lately. Pretty cool. Hopefully a hell of a lot better than Sonic Eraser (as far as puzzlers go).