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1996

    January 26:
    • "Sonic the Hedgehog", a 2-part direct-to-video animation, is released in Japan: "Eggmanland he Mukae" (meeting at Eggmanland) and "Sonic vs Metal Sonic". Initially, the videos were available on a rental-only basis, but were made available for purchase several months later. The animation is produced by Taki Corporation and directed by Kazunori Ikegami. It features the voice talents of Masami Kikuchi as Sonic, Hekiru Shiina as Tails, Yasunori Matsumoto as Knuckles, Mika Kanai as Sara, and Junpei Takiguchi as Dr. Eggman. Yuji Naka and Naoto Ohshima are credited as supervisors.

      The long-abandoned surface of the earth lies in ruins, while society thrives on an archipelago of aerial islands. Dr. Eggman plans to resuscitate the dark core by blowing the archipelago apart: this can be achieved by destroying a thin peninsula in the arctic region of the planet. Toward this end, Eggman whips up plans for a robot duplicate of Sonic: Hyper Metal Sonic. However, he needs Sonic's biological data to complete the design, and the only way to obtain that is to lure our hedgehog hero into the right place. The Doc fabricates a story about a mysterious Black Eggman and holds the President's daughter, Sara, as a hostage until Sonic agrees to help eliminate the threat. Despite Sonic's apprehension, he and Tails journey to the dark surface of the planet where they encounter wandering treasure hunter Knuckles. The red ronin decides to tag along, and the trio soon fall right into Eggman's trap.

    May 31:
    • The 2-part Sonic the Hedgehog animation is released for retail sale. The cassettes sell for 3,980 each.

    June:
    • Title: Sonic the Fighters
      Region: Japan
      Platform: Sega Model 2B CRX (arcade)
      Developer: Sega AM2
      Publisher: Sega Enterprises
      CERO Rating: n/a
      Retail: n/a



      Producer: Yuu Suzuki
      Director: Hiroshi Kataoka

    July:
    • Title: Sonic Championship (Sonic the Fighters)
      Region: North America
      Platform: Sega Model 2B CRX (arcade)
      Developer: Sega AM2
      Publisher: Sega of America
      ESRB Rating: n/a
      Retail: n/a



      Producer: Yuu Suzuki
      Director: Hiroshi Kataoka

    August 9:
    • Title: Sonic the Hedgehog CD
      Region: Japan
      Platform: Windows PC
      Developer: Sonic Team
      Publisher: Sega PC
      CERO Rating: n/a
      Retail: 7,800



      Producer: Minoru Kanari, Makoto Oshitani
      Director: Naoto Ohshima
      Notes: This is a direct port of the Mega-CD original. The opening and closing animations are higher quality due to lighter compression. Curiously, the original Japanese soundtrack is replaced with the Spencer Nilsen score originally produced for the US version.

    August 26:
    • Title: Sonic the Hedgehog CD
      Region: North America
      Platform: Windows PC
      Developer: Sonic Team
      Publisher: Sega Entertainment
      ESRB Rating: K-A
      Retail: ???



      Producer: Minoru Kanari, Makoto Oshitani
      Director: Naoto Ohshima

    October 3:
    • Title: Sonic the Hedgehog CD
      Region: Europe
      Platform: Windows PC
      Developer: Sonic Team
      Publisher: Sega PC
      PEGI Rating: n/a
      Retail: ???



      Producer: Minoru Kanari, Makoto Oshitani
      Director: Naoto Ohshima

    November 14:
    • Title: Sonic 3D: Flickies' Island
      Region: Europe
      Platform: Sega Mega Drive
      Developer: Traveller's Tales
      Publisher: Sega Europe
      PEGI Rating: n/a
      Retail: ???



      Producer: Katsuhiko Sato
      Director: Takao Miyoshi

    November:
    • Title: Sonic 3D Blast (Sonic 3D: Flickies' Island)
      Region: North America
      Platform: Sega Genesis
      Developer: Traveller's Tales
      Publisher: Sega of America
      ESRB Rating: K-A
      Retail: ???



      Producer: Katsuhiko Sato
      Director: Takao Miyoshi

    November:
    • Title: Sonic 3D Blast (Sonic 3D: Flickies' Island)
      Region: North America
      Platform: Sega Saturn
      Developer: Traveller's Tales
      Publisher: Sega of America
      ESRB Rating: K-A
      Retail: ???



      Producer: Katsuhiko Sato
      Director: Takao Miyoshi
      Notes: A port of the Mega Drive original with enhanced graphics, a new soundtrack, and completely redesigned Special Stages.

    November:
    • Title: Sonic Blast (G Sonic)
      Region: North America, Europe
      Platform: Sega Game Gear
      Developer: Aspect
      Publisher: Sega of America
      ESRB Rating: K-A
      Retail: ???



      Producer: Hiroshi Aso
      Director: Ryushin Hamada

    November:
    • Title: Sonic the Hedgehog's Gameworld
      Region: North America
      Platform: Sega Pico
      Developer: Aspect
      Publisher: Sega of America
      ESRB Rating: EC
      Retail: ???



      Producer: Hiroyuki Saigusa
      Director: ???
      Notes: A number of casino-themed minigames were removed from this version. A simple drawing program was added to compensate.

    November:
    • Title: Sonic's Schoolhouse
      Region: North America
      Platform: Windows PC
      Developer: Orion Interactive
      Publisher: Bap Interactive
      ESRB Rating: EC
      Retail: ???



      Producer: Matt Wolf
      Director: Bruce Austin
      Notes: A PC edutainment title only released in the US.

    December 7:
    • Title: Sonic the Fighters Sound Tracks
      Source: Sonic the Fighters
      Artist: Maki Morrow, Takenobu Mitsuyoshi
      Publisher: Toshiba-EMI
      Retail: ???
      1. K.I.Y.O.
      2. Get Into The Wave 2
      3. Are You Ready?
      4. Lovers
      5. Back To Soul
      6. Black Bed
      7. Come On, Mr. Sonic
      8. Blue Garden
      9. Here We Go
      10. Try Again
      11. Fire Stone
      12. Emerald
      13. Never Let it Go
      14. Hurry Up
      15. Egg's Fanfare
      16. Everything
      17. North Wind
      18. Winner's Fanfare
      19. What's Your Name?
      20. Take Me Away
      21. Continue
      22. Game Over
      23. Bonus Track 1
      24. Bonus Track 2

    December 13:
    • Title: G Sonic
      Region: Japan
      Platform: Sega Game Gear
      Developer: Aspect
      Publisher: Sega Enterprises
      CERO Rating: n/a
      Retail: 4,800



      Producer: Hiroshi Aso
      Director: Ryushin Hamada
      Notes: This was the last commercial Game Gear title released in Japan.

    ???:
    • Sonic the Hedgehog becomes the first videogame ever to be included in the National Film and Television Archive by the British Film Institute.

    ???:
    • Title: Virtual Sonic
      Source: n/a
      Artist: Howard Drossin
      Publisher: Delta Music
      Retail: ???

      Notes: Contains enhanced music from Sonic Spinball, Sonic 3, and Sonic & Knuckles as well as a few original tracks.
      1. Chaos Jam
      2. Knucklemania
      3. Battle of the Badniks
      4. Boss Opera
      5. Return to the Toxic Caves
      6. Sonic and Knuckles Theme
      7. Robotnik's Revenge
      8. Metal Sonic
      9. Sandopolis
      10. Spinball Theme
      11. City in the Clouds
      12. Sonic Triumphant

Written content and original graphics copyright 1997-2009 Jared Matte. Hosting and administration thanks to Nathan Tsui. Sonic the Hedgehog characters, logos, and images are trademarks of SEGA Corporation. The GHZ is an independent fansite and is not affiliated with SEGA Corporation.