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How One Man Is Giving Sonic Fans The Game They Want To Play

Posted by Damien McFerran

And he wants to do the same with Stunt Race FX next

Let's be honest here, Sonic's recent outings haven't been all that hot. Sonic Lost World on 3DS and Wii U was a crushing disappointment when you consider the level of hype it received, and most of the character's recent 3D outings have failed to recapture the brilliance of his early adventures. Compared to his one-time rival Mario, Sonic has starred in less must-have outings lately — although there's the chance that Sonic Boom could well change that, of course.

What's the tonic for these rather dismal showings for Sega's famous mascot? How about some fan-made titles which pay tribute to Sonic's glory years on the Genesis / Mega Drive?

That's exactly what Felipe Ribeiro Daneluz — better known online as LakeFeperd — has done. A student from São Paulo, Daneluz has created three "new" Sonic games: Sonic: Before the Sequel, Sonic: After The Sequel and Sonic Chrono Adventure. Built using an open-source engine called Sonic Worlds, this unofficial trilogy of titles has so far been downloaded 120,000 times.

Speaking to Red Bull, Daneluz explains how he began working on his own vision of Sonic:

All [the engine] had was Sonic 1 and Tails sprites so with that limitation, I thought ‘What can be done with this?’ Later, I decided it would make sense for the game to take place somewhere in the classic timeline, Sonic 1 to 3. So to make use of what I had, I decided it should be a bridge between Sonic 1 and 2 to get people's attention.

The games are impressive on their own, but the original soundtrack — which showcases the talents of Falk, Funk Fiction and Andy Tunstall — is just as noteworthy. Funk Fiction — real name Pejman Roozbeh — also spoke to Red Bull about the creation of these new tunes, which use the original tracks as inspiration:

A lot of Sonic music is practically just as iconic as Sonic himself. Like most 20-somethings of today, I grew up playing a lot of Sonic and Mario in the 16-bit era and among many other influences, it informed a lot of my taste in music...it's a mixture of our own original ideas as composers combined with music from not just Sonic, but Donkey Kong, Kirby and Final Fantasy to rock, jazz, disco, trip hop and so on.

Amazingly, Daneluz reveals that Sega hasn't been in touch regarding his games. It's very common for such fan-made projects to be shut down by the companies which own the IP, but so far this unique Sonic trilogy has been left alone.

With his trilogy complete, Daneluz explains that he is done with Sonic for now, and is instead working on his own original game, called Spark The Electric Jester. However, he's not finished with re-imagining classic games, and has his sights set on a rather less attainable target:

If I had the money, power, copyright, skills and wide interest, I would resurrect the game Stunt Race FX.

Nintendo is less likely to turn a blind eye to such activities — it has shut down similar projects recently — but we'd love to see the classic SNES racer get a new lease of life.

What do you think of these fan-made Sonic games? Have you played any of them? Let us know with a comment.

[via redbull.com]

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User Comments (62)

Captain_Toad

#1

Captain_Toad said:

OMG! Sonic before and after the sequel is amazing. Haven't played chrono yet espically the music (even from a fanmade game it's downright epic) Kudos LakeFepard and the music guys for making these. Play em now if you have the chance! or at least listen to the music.

noctowl

#2

noctowl said:

Crushing disappointment? That seems a bit of an exaggeration.

I think the main problem is the sonic people remember doesn't accurately reflect the old sonic games they love so much. I just replayed the original and sonic 2, and I was really surprised that I forgot most of the levels. Underwater, platforming, waiting for spikes to retract, etc.

I would argue that most of the game isn't focused on speed. So of course new games aren't going to satisfy players. The new games copy a lot from the old games, as they are, not as we remember them.

JimJam707

#3

JimJam707 said:

"most of the character's recent 3D outings have failed to recapture the brilliance of his early adventures."
I would argue that Generations and Colours at least captured the brilliance, if not more

Angelic_Lapras_King

#4

Angelic_Lapras_King said:

Think you'll find that Colours and Generations (Console) were great 3D Sonics, while Lost World on Wii U is a love/hate relation.

marnelljm

#9

marnelljm said:

Lost World on Wii U is a pretty decent game. The 3DS version however is awful imo.

Shiryu

#10

Shiryu said:

I played so many hours of "Stunt Race FX", 2WD FTW! Nintendo should really do some sort of reboot, but I fer they're only racing game in the foreseeable future is "Mario Kart 8" (how I wish it was F-Zero too!) so I will keep a look out for this talented fellow future releases.

IRNBRU115

#11

IRNBRU115 said:

Never really liked Sonic, but the music is great! Would love to hear it in smash bros, but that's not gonna happen. (Maybe for project M wii u?)

CharlieLoneWolf

#12

CharlieLoneWolf said:

I've never heard of this fan-made Sonic trilogy until now. I'll check them out. Old-school Sonic will always rule.

Beau_Skunk

#13

Beau_Skunk said:

I played the demos for both versions of "Lost World," and frankly, I think I'd rather play it then this Sonic 1 rehash fan game. I really don't get why this site lately is bashing alot of decent games. (Especially, the horrible reviews for some decent/good ones like "Balloon Fight," and such.)

Wolfgabe

#14

Wolfgabe said:

I am surprised SRB2 didn't get a mention that game has been in development for almost a decade and it looks quite promising?

Pichuka97

#16

Pichuka97 said:

Does anyone know what program you would need to use to use this engine (or any others) because I am really interested in using this but every time I download the file for Sonic Worlds for example, it tells me I need to download a file and I have to search the internet to find it but that doesn't help.

Artwark

#17

Artwark said:

At this point, SEGA has Christian Whitehead who can easily make a brand new Sonic game with his game engine. Why isn't SEGA seriously making the Sonic we want instead of screwing it up over and over again? I had a great time with Colors and Generations but I can't say the same for Lost World.

Atleast Nintendo makes games that people will obviously want to play and they atleast make great games at the very least.

maximo_jd

#18

maximo_jd said:

@notcoowl i agree with you man. Yeah sonic was able to be fast ,but that was never the best way to get through the game. Even sonic 1 had swings that you had to wait for over pits of spikes. You sure as hell weren't running over that.

I personally liked games like Sonic Unleashed, Sonic Colors ,and Lost World.
Although i enjoyed them the Adventure games were never my fav and i find those were the worst 3d games

Tasuki

#19

Tasuki said:

It's sad when these fan made games gives players what they want and the companies that own the IP don't.

I might look into this later but on that note can you use a controller on this? That's the one thing that bugs me with fan made games on the PC no controller support and I can't play games like Sonic or Mega Man with a keyboard.

PrincessEevee9

#20

PrincessEevee9 said:

I would like to see where Lost World was a crushing disappointment. Most be one of those people who needs their hand held to beat a game hmph.

chiptoon

#24

chiptoon said:

Sonic Lost World was one of my favorite games of last year! The production values fall short in a couple of places, but the game play is magnificent. "A crushing disappointment" it most certainly was not. What was crushingly disappointing was how many so called professional reviewers didn't bother to find out what most of the buttons do.

unrandomsam

#25

unrandomsam said:

Nintendo has turned a blind eye other than a 100% clone which is different. (They have done nothing to the numerous mod projects for NSMBW / Rom hacks / Even other almost clones of Super Mario Bros (Like the one that lets you play it as different characters I forget its name).

Sega has a history of shutting it down. (See the Streets of Rage Fan Project which is brilliant).

unrandomsam

#26

unrandomsam said:

What I want is just more levels for Generations and the bugs fixed nothing else has come close for me.

Dr_Corndog

#27

Dr_Corndog said:

Heard a fair bit off talk about this over on Sonic Retro, but I haven't tried it yet. Guess I should. Sonic XG (another fan projected, unrelated to these so far as I know) is really nice, if short.

TySoN_F

#28

TySoN_F said:

This trilogy is great! I've only had the chance to play before and after the sequel but wow, it's really dang impressive.

I kind of wish games like these could be picked up and have limited official releases like SFxMM did for Capcom.

ednice

#29

ednice said:

Actually that statement is false, the only games Sonic fans want to play are Sonic Adventure 3 and Sonic Boom

Gen0neD

#30

Gen0neD said:

Put Stunt Race on 3DS. In 3D, with 60fps. I'd buy that ten times. LOVED that game.

OdnetninAges

#31

OdnetninAges said:

I thought Sonic Lost World for Wii U was brilliant, and better than Sonic Colors.

Oh well...

I'm not too interested in fan games...

LittleIrves

#32

LittleIrves said:

@Gen0neD Yes to Stunt Race FX 3D. That's a classic I could get behind. Rented the original long long ago and was super-jazzed by it at the time... even though it ran like a broken lawnmower. Finally bought it used a few years ago and, after the initial shock wore off, it's quite playable. And funny. The cars had eyeballs, people! Loved the moving course elements that were different on each lap, too-- Mario Kart 8's airplane stage, actually, seems to reimagine the Arwing appearance in SRFX.

MeWario

#33

MeWario said:

I love people like this. Doing what they're passionate about and not letting anything stop them - brilliant!

Yanchamaru

#35

Yanchamaru said:

Better download them now before Sega shuts them down like they did with the other Sonic fan made game from the developer of 90s Arcade Racer

Kirk

#36

Kirk said:

Some really nice stuff going on in that game.

Why do companies like Sega and Nintendo not just give these guys a few bucks and then use these as proper releases on eShops and whatever?

They'd make an easy fortune imo.

So many basically finished games, that are often just as good as the real thing and sometimes even better, ready for the taking...

B3ND3R

#37

B3ND3R said:

Generations and Colors did a pretty good job capturing the sonic magic... I am also one of those few people who really enjoyed lost world, but going to past games on my genesis makes me want a modern sidescrolling sonic something awful :p

FilmerNgameR

#39

FilmerNgameR said:

Now these games really capture Sonic's real potential: super fast platforming and amazing music not like SAnic LAst Worldz which only got a few stages right like those grinding stages. Hopefully Sonic Team uses the Hedgehog engine again, that Sonic Generations game play is perfect for modern Sonic imo.

JebbyDeringer

#40

JebbyDeringer said:

The sad part is at this point Sonic has been a crap game longer than it was a good game much like Metallica has been a crappy band for longer than it was a good one (for anyone that actually liked them). It makes you wonder if the early years weren't just experimentation and all the games now are the true vision of what Sonic was meant to be.

Oh and if you don't want this to happen, don't put guys in suits in charge of figuring out if a game is good or not. Blackberry has the same issue, they let guys in suits run the company. Business men have no clue when it comes to design, they are good at doing business. When you are running a company and approving projects though it means you approve crap and become really good at selling it.

3MonthBeef

#41

3MonthBeef said:

@noctowl That's the thing I never understood about Sonic fans. Its like they all only played the first level or something and called the whole game great.

I was never into to Sonic but found S4 episode 1 to be quite entertaining, yet the fans disparaged it or at least made it out to be an okay attempt.

Now I will say the design of the Sonic franchise in general never really appealed to me — at least back then — was because I didn't like the fact I couldn't see what danger lay ahead due the screen limitation. You would think converting sonic in 3D would help this but then the problem is judging the speed at which objects headed toward you and reacting accordingly.

I forget which Sonic introduced it but the homing attack is what made the difference and Sonic 1 and 2 definitely didn't have that feature.

ecco6t9

#42

ecco6t9 said:

These games look like the 2D Sonic games I always pictured for the 32 Bit era and beyond.

JuanitoShet

#43

JuanitoShet said:

While I don't agree that Lost World is a disappointing disaster, I can't say I liked it much either. I own the 3DS version and really could never get into the game - I don't know what it was. The flow, maybe the level designs, the fact that I had to use the Colors Powers I didn't care for.

Eh. These fan-made games look great though. I love the classic Sonic titles, and having more of them is always a good thing. :B

PrincessSugoi

#44

PrincessSugoi said:

Never heard of this project. Don't like playing games on the computer but will have to give this a spin.

SilverArrow

#45

SilverArrow said:

The only reason Nintendo took down Fullscreen Mario was because the guy had donation buttons on it. I don't see this guy making money from these three games so they're safe.

Bolt_Strike

#48

Bolt_Strike said:

Never played these games, but they look like good Classic games. Freedom Planet has pretty much caught my interest in that style of gameplay, so maybe I'll give it a try.

I usually prefer Unleashed/Generations style, though, it's better tailored to speed.

Genesaur

#49

Genesaur said:

Eh, they look okay. I wouldn't say amazing, but it's often nice to see fan-made games. I am a little sick of the modern Sonic hate bandwagon. It's gotten to the point where sites like Screwattack look back with loving nostalgia on Sonic Adventure. You know, that game everyone hated when it came out because it wasn't exactly like Sonic's original outings? It's all come full-circle.

Excep7ional

#51

Excep7ional said:

My favorite sonic game will always be Sonic Heroes, so many great memories with that game. Sonic Adventure 1&2 tie for second favorite..

Janfeae

#52

Janfeae said:

Because there is such a thing as Sonic 06, fans will never get the game we truly want...Sonic Adventure 3. I so miss playing as other characters, and following an interconnecting story (That doesn't involve kissing humans and other uh..yea...)

tabris95

#53

tabris95 said:

Hmmm. Not enough random death pits. Also needs at least 12 more side characters. :P

GreatPlayer

#56

GreatPlayer said:

Only Nintendo life staff were disappointed. Many sonc fans welcome the change in Sonic Lost World. I found it better tham previous 3D sonic.

Sonic 1 was not about speed as much as exploration. Sonic Lost World stays true to the earliest root of the sonic history.

mjc0961

#58

mjc0961 said:

So, I played Before the Sequel after this article, and all I have to say is...

That crap was absolutely NOT the game I wanted to play. Especially the uninspired bosses. Who thought putting Robotnik in brightly colored blobs instead of machines and having you chase him down like in Sonic Advance 2 was a good idea?! Because I'm here to say it wasn't.

Also, three levels that are 100% underwater? Terrible. Underwater physics in games like these are generally terrible, which is why when you play the actual classic games, you see that they kept it to a minimum with even the few underwater stages not being 100% underwater. But in this game, three levels full of slow walking, slow jumping, and lots of boredom. The "dodge spike things in the current" parts were bad too as they didn't put you far enough to the other end of the screen to have enough time to move out of the way.

mjc0961

#60

mjc0961 said:

@noctowl I dunno, I always remembered that the old games were about platforming and not just about holding left and watching Sonic run really fast with the help of speed boosters everywhere.

On that note, anyone looking for a laugh should check out Sonic 2 Dimps Edition.

khululy

#61

khululy said:

@mjc0961 That's what i like about the 3D sonic, the senseless speed but i also love good platforming that made sonic generations so much fun for me plus it looks amazing. (Yes the forced challenges are a forced way to get us to play them and it's cheap but so was sonic generations on steam)

The fan game looks nice but some parts have hard to spot platforms and weird spikes in that cave thing are weird.

chiefeagle02

#62

chiefeagle02 said:

I've played "Sonic Robo Blast 2" on the Sega Dreamcast a few years back. It's a 3D platformer based on the Doom Engine and it actually wasn't all that bad. It wasn't as good as, say, Sonic Adventure, but for what it was (a free 3D Sonic game), it held up really well against other 3D Sonic games.

PS: Did I mention it's free? https://www.srb2.org/download/

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