Sonic the Hedgehog 2 (8-bit)
Sonic the Hedgehog 2 (ソニック・ザ・ヘッジホッグ２ Sonikku za Hejjihoggu Tsū) is a 2D platforming game in the Sonic the Hedgehog series developed by Aspect and published by Sega. It was initially released on October 16, 1992, for the Sega Master System, and later ported to the Game Gear between October 29, 1992, and late November 1992, with the former version being exclusive to PAL countries. Launching just a month before its 16-bit counterpart for the Sega Mega Drive, this game introduces Miles “Tails” Prower, Sonic the Hedgehog’s loyal friend, who would later become a prominent character in the series.
Despite sharing the same title, Sonic the Hedgehog 2 for the 8-bit platforms is a distinct game from its 16-bit counterpart. It features entirely different Zones, a unique storyline, and additional gameplay elements. The game’s narrative revolves around Sonic’s mission to rescue Animals and Tails, who has been captured by Dr. Robotnik. Much like other titles for the Game Gear and Master System, Sonic the Hedgehog 2 has been re-released in various compilation packages and included as an unlockable mini-game. Some of these re-releases are available on platforms like the Virtual Console for the Wii and Nintendo 3DS.
- Console Differences
- Cheat Codes
- Archive Links
- See Also
- Related Articles
Sonic the Hedgehog 2
The Sega Game Gear cover of Sonic the Hedgehog 2.
- Masafumi Ogata
- Naofumi Hataya
- Tomonori Sawada
Video Game Overview
SeriesSonic the Hedgehog
Sega Master System:
EU 16 October 1992
SA 16 October 1992
Sega Game Gear:
JP 21 November 1992
NA 17 November 1992
EU 29 October 1992
Wii Virtual Console:
JP 18 November 2008Virtual Console, page 9 (Japanese). Nintendo. Archived from the original on 28 January 2018.
NA 8 December 2008Sonic the Hedgehog 2. Nintendo. Archived from the original on 22 November 2010.
EU 26 December 2008Sonic The Hedgehog™ 2. Nintendo. Archived from the original on 22 January 2019.
AU December 2008
3DS Virtual Console:
JP 31 October 2012
NA 27 June 2013Game Gear Titles on Nintendo 3DS eShop: Three More for the Road!. Sega Blog. Sega (27 June 2013). Archived from the original on 3 July 2013. Retrieved on 17 August 2016.
CERO: All Ages
- ROM cartridge
- Digital download
|Sonic the Hedgehog|
Following the previous events, South Island has enjoyed a period of tranquility, prompting Sonic the Hedgehog to seek new adventures elsewhere. However, upon his return, Sonic discovers an unsettling absence of his Animal companions. Perplexed by this discovery, Sonic heads back home, where he finds a written message left behind by his dear friend, Miles “Tails” Prower. The note reveals the distressing news that Dr. Robotnik has captured all the Animals from South Island, and Tails himself is held captive within the Crystal Egg – the very place where he penned the note. Tails further explains that accessing the Crystal Egg requires Sonic to possess all six Chaos Emeralds. The note also reveals that Dr. Robotnik has devised six formidable Master Robots, each stationed in different Zones, and warns Sonic to exercise utmost caution, as the doctor harbors specific intentions of eliminating him. Determined to counter Robotnik’s malicious plot, Sonic embarks on a mission to thwart his sinister plans and rescue his friends.Sonic the Hedgehog 2 (Sega Game Gear) Japanese instruction booklet, pgs. 4-5.
As Sonic traverses South Island, he overcomes the challenges and traps set by Robotnik, all the while on a quest to locate the Chaos Emeralds. His journey leads him to the Scrambled Egg, where he faces off against Mecha Sonic, the formidable Master Robot. Upon emerging victorious against this mechanical foe, the outcome of the game’s ending is determined by the player’s progress:
- If the player has not acquired the first five Chaos Emeralds prior to the Mecha Sonic encounter, a cutscene depicts Sonic running across a simple landscape, transitioning from day to night. The scene concludes with Sonic gazing at the night sky, revealing a constellation resembling Tails.
- If the player has successfully gathered the first five Chaos Emeralds before facing Mecha Sonic, they will be transported to the Crystal Egg for a final showdown with Dr. Robotnik. Following the climactic battle, Robotnik retreats, and Tails is freed from captivity. Sonic and Tails then depart together, eventually pausing to contemplate the night sky, where constellations resembling themselves come into view.
|Miles “Tails” Prower||A boy who adores Sonic. His two tails are a sign of his vitality.|
|Doctor Robotnik||The evil genius scientist. His goals: world domination and overthrowing Sonic.Sonic the Hedgehog 2 (Sega Game Gear) Japanese instruction booklet, pg. 29.|
|Mecha Sonic||Doctor Robotnik’s super secret weapon. A formidable enemy?|
Sonic the Hedgehog 2 follows a side-scrolling platforming gameplay style akin to Sonic the Hedgehog (8-bit). The primary goal is to guide Sonic through each Act of a Zone within a ten-minute time frame. Players commence the game with three lives, which can be augmented by acquiring 1-Up Monitors or amassing 100 Rings. Sonic retains his fundamental actions from the previous game, including the Super Spin Attack for jumping and attacking (with jump height determined by the duration of the trigger button press) and the Spin Attack for obliterating obstacles and enemies.
Rings serve as a protective buffer against harm, though they are unable to safeguard against hazards such as drowning, bottomless pits, or Time Overs. When Sonic takes damage, a substantial number of Rings scatter around him, of which a portion can be recollected. Sustaining damage without any Rings results in Sonic losing a life and the player restarting the current Act. Exhausting all lives concludes the game, although Continues, awarded through Bonus Panels, provide additional attempts. Throughout the game, Monitors yield various power-ups upon being shattered.
Unique gameplay features are introduced in each Zone of Sonic the Hedgehog 2, including Railcarts, Hang-Gliders, large air bubbles, and Flywheels. The game boasts larger and more intricate maps compared to its predecessor, complete with heightened challenges and obstacles like Spikes. Notably, each Zone’s second Act conceals a single Chaos Emerald. Achieving the goal of amassing the first five Emeralds and triumphing over Mecha Sonic in the sixth Zone leads to earning the sixth Emerald and gaining access to the final Zone (Crystal Egg Zone). Successfully acquiring all Chaos Emeralds culminates in the game’s “good ending,” while those who fall short witness a less uplifting credits sequence (where Tails remains unreleased).
- Defeating Master Robot: 5,000 points.
- Defeating Mecha Sonic: 10,000 points.
- Defeating Dr. Robotnik: 20,000 points.
- Hitting Badniks: 100 points.
- Ring Bonus: 100 points per Ring.
- Time Bonus
- < 0:20: 300,000 points
- 0:21: 250,000 points
- 0:22: 200,000 points
- 0:23: 150,000 points
- 0:24: 100,000 points
- 0:25: 90,000 points
- 0:26: 80,000 points
- 0:27: 70,000 points
- 0:28: 60,000 points
- 0:29 – 0:59: 50,000 – 10,000 points.
- 1:00 – 1:59: 9,900 – 9,000 points.
- 2:00 – 2:59: 8,900 – 8,000 points.
- 3:00 – 3:59: 7,900 – 7,000 points.
- 4:00 – 4:59: 6,900 – 6,000 points.
- 5:00 – 5:59: 5,900 – 5,000 points.
- 6:00 – 6:59: 4,900 – 4,000 points.
- 7:00 – 7:59: 3,900 – 3,000 points.
- 8:00 – 8:59: 2,900 – 2,000 points.
- 9:00 – 9:59: 1,900 – 1,000 points.
|/||Super Spin Attack|
|left/right + down||Spin Attack|
- Air Bubble
- Chaos Emerald
- Power Sneakers (Master System version)
- Super Ring
Gimmicks and Obstacles
- Bonus Panel
- Conveyor Belt
- Hang Glider (first appearance)
- High-speed warp tube
- Prison Egg
- Railcart (first appearance)
Bonus Panel Rewards
Similar to its predecessor, Sonic the Hedgehog 2 (8-bit) features a Bonus Panel located at the conclusion of Acts 1 and 2 within each Zone. Successfully navigating this panel triggers its spin, and upon its cessation, the player is rewarded with a bonus corresponding to the emblem depicted on the panel’s face:
- Sonic the Hedgehog
- Dr. Robotnik
- Miles “Tails” Prower (first appearance)
- Buton (first appearance)
- Burrowbot (first appearance)
- Flying Chopper (only appearance)
- Game-game (first appearance)
- Mecha Hiyoko (first appearance)
- New Motora (first appearance)
- Taraban (first appearance)
- Zaririn (first appearance)
Sonic the Hedgehog 2 encompasses a total of seven distinct Zones, each divided into three Acts. Within the third Act of a Zone, the player confronts one of the Master Robots without any Rings for protection. After overcoming a Master Robot, the player must then liberate Animals from a floating Prison Egg in order to advance to the subsequent Zone. To gain access to the Crystal Egg Zone, the player must collect the initial five Chaos Emeralds and subsequently defeat the sixth Master Robot. Each Act’s title card features Sonic and Tails in varying scenarios, even though Tails does not function as a playable character in the game. The sequence of Zones is as follows:
- Under Ground Zone
- Sky High Zone
- Aqua Lake Zone
- Green Hills Zone
- Gimmick Mountain Zone
- Scrambled Egg Zone
- Crystal Egg Zone (Extra Zone)
- Pit Master (Under Ground Zone) (only appearance)
- Hiyoko Master (Sky High Zone) (only appearance)
- Balance Master (Aqua Lake Zone) (only appearance)
- Dohyo Master (Green Hills Zone) (only appearance)
- Charge Master (Gimmick Mountain Zone) (only appearance)
- Mecha Sonic (Scrambled Egg Zone) (only appearance)
- Crystal Egg Zone boss (Crystal Egg Zone) (only appearance)
Sonic the Hedgehog 2 for the Sega Master System and Game Gear has garnered widespread critical acclaim since its launch. The Master System version was highly praised by Mean Machines Sega, which deemed it superior to its predecessor and labeled it as “one of the greatest Master System games of all time,” bestowing it with an impressive overall score of 95%. Mega Zone also lauded the game, awarding it an overall score of 93% and describing it as “radically different from the Mega Drive version,” yet still a “classic in its own right.” The reviewer, Steward Clark, commended the “superb gameplay” and hailed it as another triumph. Sega Force echoed this sentiment with a 92% score, commending the decision to create a distinct game rather than merely scaling down the MD version, resulting in a compelling and enjoyable experience.
The Game Gear version received acclaim from GamePro, specifically the praise went to the engaging gameplay and impressive graphics considering the handheld’s limitations. The score breakdown included 5 for graphics, 4 for sound, 4.5 for controls, and 5 for overall enjoyment. Sega Force awarded the Game Gear version a score of 93%, highlighting its challenging nature and being the toughest iteration of Sonic 2. The French magazine Mega Force also provided a positive review.Sonic 2 (January 1993). Retrieved on 9 February 2012. Sega Power was effusive in its praise, rating Sonic the Hedgehog 2 with a perfect 5 out of 5 stars and deeming it the best handheld cartridge available anywhere.
In 1993, the game was recognized as the Best Portable Game of the year by Electronic Gaming Monthly.
Upon reviewing the Master System version for its release on the Wii Virtual Console, IGN assigned a score of 8.0 out of 10. The reviewer, Lucas M. Thomas, emphasized that the game is distinct from the Genesis classic with the same name and lauded its uniqueness, including features like mine carts and hang gliders. Thomas concluded that Sonic the Hedgehog 2 is a hidden gem from Sonic’s early years, deserving of recognition.
|Computer and Video Games||93% (SMS)Rand, Paul; Boone, Tim (November 1992). “World Exclusive: Sonic 2“. Go! (Computer and Video Games) (132): 24-25. Archived from the original.|
92% (GG)Rand, Paul; Anglin, Paul (December 1992). “Review: Sonic 2“. Go! (Computer and Video Games) (14): 12-13. Archived from the original.
|GamePro||18.5/20 (GG)The Unknown Gamer (March 1993). “Game Gear Pro Review: Sonic the Hedgehog 2“. GamePro (44): 164. Archived from the original.|
|IGN||8/10 (Wii)Thomas, Lucas M. (9 December 2008). Sonic the Hedgehog 2 (Master System Version) Review: The name’s the same, but it’s a totally different game. IGN. Retrieved on 9 February 2012.|
|Mean Machines Sega||95% (SMS)Master System Review: Sonic the Hedgehog 2 66 (November 1992). Retrieved on 3 February 2012.|
|Mega Zone||93% (SMS)Sonic the Hedgehog 2 31 (January 1993). Retrieved on 3 February 2012.|
|Nintendo Life||7/10 (Wii)Nintendo Life Staff (9 December 2008). Sonic the Hedgehog 2 Review (SMS). Nintendo Life.|
|Sega Force||92% (SMS)Reviewed: Sonic the Hedgehog 2 (Master System & Game Gear) 30 (December 1992). Retrieved on 3 February 2012.|
|Sega Power|| (SMS)“The Hard Line“. Sega Power (24): 101-102. September 1993. Archived from the original.|
|Sega Force Mega||93% (GG)“Game Gear Guide”. Sega Force Mega (7): 78. January 1994.|
92% (SMS)“Master Market”. Sega Force Mega 2 (7): 79-80. January 1994.
|Sega Master Force||92% (SMS)“Master Market”. Sega Master Force (1): 62–65. August 1993.|
Three years subsequent to its initial release, the Game Gear rendition of Sonic the Hedgehog 2 underwent repackaging, joining forces with Sonic Spinball (8-bit), resulting in the compilation title “Sonic 2 in 1,” released in October 1995.
In a manner akin to other titles for the Game Gear and Master System, Sonic the Hedgehog 2 has made appearances in several compilation releases. For instance, in Sonic Adventure DX: Director’s Cut for the Nintendo GameCube and PC, the Game Gear iteration of the game was incorporated as an unlockable mini-game, attainable after amassing 120 Emblems or fulfilling specific Missions. Furthermore, the Game Gear version found its place in the compilation Sonic Gems Collection, available for the Nintendo GameCube and Sony PlayStation 2.
The Master System adaptation of Sonic the Hedgehog 2 was introduced to the Wii’s Virtual Console lineup in 2008. Similarly, the Game Gear version was integrated into the Nintendo 3DS’ Virtual Console offerings, first in Japan in 2012 and then internationally in 2013.
Sonic Origins Plus features the playable inclusion of the Game Gear version of Sonic the Hedgehog 2.
Due to the Sega Game Gear’s handheld nature and its lower screen resolution, Sonic the Hedgehog 2 had a reduced screen width compared to its Sega Master System counterpart. Unlike the previous 8-bit installment, the character sprites for Sonic, Tails, and Robotnik were not adjusted to accommodate the smaller resolution. This resulted in a tighter reaction time for players. The arenas for all boss battles were also scaled down, which posed particular challenges, especially evident when confronting the Under Ground Zone boss. This design choice impacted battles across the board; the Green Hills Zone confrontation, for instance, unfolded in a smaller and steeper arena, and the escape chute during the Crystal Egg Zone encounter was rendered invisible. Moreover, some bosses exhibited more aggressive behavior, such as Pit Master’s variable rock-fall patterns, Balance Master’s constant forward movement to compel Sonic to jump, and Dohyo Master’s new sweeping attack motion.
These factors have led many to perceive the Game Gear version as excessively demanding and, to some extent, unfairly challenging.
Alterations extend to the introductory sequence as well. In the Game Gear rendition of Sonic the Hedgehog 2, Robotnik is depicted kidnapping Tails in Sonic’s presence, while the Master System version merely illustrates Robotnik’s escape with the captive Tails. The Scrambled Egg Zone’s theme replaces the music of the introduction, with the latter’s melody being used on the Master System’s title screen. Furthermore, the Game Gear edition presents dark blue water, as opposed to green, in the second act of the Aqua Lake Zone. Notably, this version depicts the water level rising at the beginning of the act, a departure from zone continuity, since the preceding act concludes underwater. Additionally, despite being referenced in the manual, the Game Gear version entirely omits the Monitors with Power Sneakers, which are replaced by Monitors featuring Super Rings.
Furthermore, the two versions of Sonic the Hedgehog 2 incorporate distinct music tracks, including variations on boss themes. Notably, the Game Gear’s good ending features an upbeat tune, while the Master System’s good and bad endings share a somewhat melancholic melody. The Master System edition also includes an extra musical composition absent in the Game Gear release—the “High Speed” theme.
- In the Sega Master System version of the game, a secret Level Select feature can be accessed during startup. To activate it, the player must simultaneously hold the left direction on the first controller’s Control Pad and + on the second controller. Once the screen transitions to blue and the introductory animation initiates, the player should proceed to start the game using the main controller as usual. This will reveal the Level Select option.
- In the Sega Game Gear version, a similar hidden Level Select can be accessed during startup. To activate it, the player needs to hold the southwest direction and simultaneously press + . The player should wait until the title screen emerges, and when Tails blinks twice on the title screen, they should press the START button while releasing the other held buttons. This action will grant access to the Level Select feature.
- Compose: Tomozou Endo (“Tomozou”), Simachan, Ray
- Program: Ko.Ko, Semimaru,[note 1]Sega Game Gear version Hiro SSS,[note 2]Sega Master System version Tea Tea, Tosiyan
- Art: Hisato Fukumoto (“Jly King”), Nobuhiko Honda (“Noburin”), Tez, U.D.K
- Edit: Raizou, M. Shima, End, Mariyuri
- Sound: Masafumi Ogata (“Gatao”), Naofumi Hataya (“Nao Chan”), Tomonori Sawada (“Dawasa”)
- Thanks: Hiroshi Aso (“Asohy”), Takashi Shoji (“Taku. S”), Katsuhiro Hasegawa (“The Hase”), Takashi Yuda (“Thomas Y”), Ryu, Okusan, Kenji Shintani (“Lunarian”), Hitmen, Aspect, and You
In the Post-Super Genesis Wave timeline of the Sonic the Hedgehog comic series published by Archie Comics, the storyline of Sonic the Hedgehog 2 was integrated with some changes. Notably, the Super Special Sonic Search & Smash Squad and Breezie the Hedgehog were added to the narrative. Furthermore, the conclusion of the game’s events in the comics was modified to seamlessly transition into the events depicted in the comics’ adaptation of “Tails’ Skypatrol.”
- The title cards for the Acts in Sonic the Hedgehog 2 utilize sprites of Sonic and Tails that are derived from their counterparts in the 16-bit version of Sonic the Hedgehog 2.
- Sonic the Hedgehog 2 introduced the concept of a robotic version of Sonic. This idea was also utilized in the 16-bit version of Sonic the Hedgehog 2 with the inclusion of Mecha Sonic in the Death Egg Zone. These robot characters preceded the introduction of Metal Sonic, who later appeared in Sonic the Hedgehog CD.
- In Sonic the Hedgehog 2, the color of Springs and spikes varies based on the Zone. Notably, diagonally-aligned Springs made their debut in this game before appearing in the 16-bit version.
- The Western box art of the game features skeletal bee/bird-like enemies called Badniks. Interestingly, these enemies do not appear during actual gameplay.
- It’s worth noting that the Western box art seems to depict Sonic and Tails in what resembles the Emerald Hill Zone from the 16-bit version of the game. While it could be intended to represent Green Hills Zone, the artwork more closely resembles Emerald Hill Zone, characterized by palm trees and bridges, which were not present in Green Hills Zone.
- A prototype version of Sonic the Hedgehog 2 existed, featuring only one track, three Zones, no Badniks, and no bosses. The physics in this prototype were very similar to Sonic the Hedgehog (8-bit).
- Sonic the Hedgehog 2 was the first handheld Sonic game to incorporate functional loops within its Zones.
- This game also marked the introduction of a secret final boss, adding an extra layer of intrigue to the gameplay.
- Interestingly, the music for Green Hills Zone in Sonic the Hedgehog 2 was used as the theme song for the Japanese and European versions of Sonic the Hedgehog CD. This musical connection was facilitated by the involvement of composers Masafumi Ogata and Naofumi Hataya in both games. A remix of this tune was employed for Mecha Green Hill Zone in Sonic Chaos, and a faster variation was used as the Invincibility theme in Sonic Drift. Furthermore, the music received a remix treatment as part of the Invincibility theme in Sonic Adventure and Sonic Adventure.
- The intro and title music of Sonic the Hedgehog 2, depending on the version of the game, was repurposed as the title music for Sonic Chaos.
- ↑ Virtual Console, page 9 (Japanese). Nintendo. Archived from the original on 28 January 2018.
- ↑ Sonic the Hedgehog 2. Nintendo. Archived from the original on 22 November 2010.
- ↑ Sonic The Hedgehog™ 2. Nintendo. Archived from the original on 22 January 2019.
- ↑ Game Gear Titles on Nintendo 3DS eShop: Three More for the Road!. Sega Blog. Sega (27 June 2013). Archived from the original on 3 July 2013. Retrieved on 17 August 2016.
- ↑ Rand, Paul; Boone, Tim (November 1992). “World Exclusive: Sonic 2“. Go! (Computer and Video Games) (132): 24-25. Archived from the original.
- ↑ Rand, Paul; Anglin, Paul (December 1992). “Review: Sonic 2“. Go! (Computer and Video Games) (14): 12-13. Archived from the original.
- ↑ The Unknown Gamer (March 1993). “Game Gear Pro Review: Sonic the Hedgehog 2“. GamePro (44): 164. Archived from the original.
- ↑ Thomas, Lucas M. (9 December 2008). Sonic the Hedgehog 2 (Master System Version) Review: The name’s the same, but it’s a totally different game. IGN. Retrieved on 9 February 2012.
- ↑ Master System Review: Sonic the Hedgehog 2 66 (November 1992). Retrieved on 3 February 2012.
- ↑ Sonic the Hedgehog 2 31 (January 1993). Retrieved on 3 February 2012.
- ↑ Nintendo Life Staff (9 December 2008). Sonic the Hedgehog 2 Review (SMS). Nintendo Life.
- ↑ Reviewed: Sonic the Hedgehog 2 (Master System & Game Gear) 30 (December 1992). Retrieved on 3 February 2012.
- ↑ “The Hard Line“. Sega Power (24): 101-102. September 1993. Archived from the original.
- ↑ “Game Gear Guide”. Sega Force Mega (7): 78. January 1994.
- ↑ “Master Market”. Sega Force Mega 2 (7): 79-80. January 1994.
- ↑ “Master Market”. Sega Master Force (1): 62–65. August 1993.
- ↑ Electronic Gaming Monthly’s Buyer’s Guide. 1993.
- ↑ Sonic the Hedgehog 2 (Sega Game Gear) Japanese instruction booklet, pgs. 4-5.
- ↑ Sonic the Hedgehog 2 (Sega Game Gear) Japanese instruction booklet, pg. 29.
- ↑ Sonic 2 (January 1993). Retrieved on 9 February 2012.