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Sonic the Hedgehog made his Mega Drive debut 26 years ago today.

On June 23rd 1991, Sega's answer to Super Mario arrived on North American store shelves, with the Japanese and European releases following in July. With its incredible visuals and astonishing speed, the game was hailed as an instant classic, and went on to establish a franchise which continues to this very day.

Sonic is no longer Mario's deadly commercial rival, however; since Sega exited the hardware arena, the two mascots have shared screen time with one another in Sega's range of Olympic Games titles, and Sonic is part of the Smash Bros. roster. His next outings are Sonic Mania and Sonic Forces, both of which are Switch-bound.

Which Sonic title is your favourite? And are you old enough to recall when he took his first bow on Sega's 16-bit console? Let us know with a comment. 

Thanks to King Monkey for the tip!