No, I agree, he did create a lot of new ideas and characters over his time. I respect any author who works hard to create an interesting world and clearly cares about what they're doing. Yeah he wrote plenty of turkeys and I never liked his art, but overall it was a good run. People like to joke about 'original characters', but that's what happens when your plot centers around the goings-on of one race. They look original enough... for echidnas.
Can anyone fill me in on the background for this?
Knuckles' dad gets a premonition that his son will be screwed in a doomsday future, so endeavors to make him a super-echidna by, among other things, zapping the unhatched egg with chaos energy.
and then completely destroyed it by ensuring no other writer could ever use them for the Sonic Comic ever again.
Half of them were already dead or reduced to eternal butt monkeys by that point, there was nothing left to lose.