Sonic Origins is intended to be an authentic celebration of the classic 2D Sonic the Hedgehog games, but not quite all of the content will make it to the compilation that launches later this week.
The game, which includes remastered versions of Sonic 1, 2, 3 & Knuckles and CD, also features new animated cutscenes, bonus objectives and more. However, fans are not happy that the game does not include the original, authentic soundtrack for Sonic the Hedgehog 3.
The soundtrack of Sonic the Hedgehog 3 has a complicated history† It’s a well-known piece of video game trivia that Michael Jackson apparently worked on the Sonic 3 soundtrack, leading to years of speculation about what legal rights Sega may or may not have to re-release the game with its original music.
For years, Sega re-released emulated versions of Sonic 3, including the original music. But now that version of the game is not available as Sega removed classic Sonic games from digital storefronts ahead of Origins release†
Now, with Origins, it appears to have been confirmed that Sega will not reuse the original music in Sonic 3. Earlier this month, Sonic social media manager Katie Chrzanowski confirmed the full original soundtrack. wouldn’t return for Sonic Origins?†
“We can’t use all the original sounds [from S3&K]† Jun Senoue has worked very hard to adapt the original music composed for Origins in 1993,” said Chrzanowski. She also said that Senoue used the same sound chip from the Genesis to faithfully reproduce parts of the Sonic 3 & Knuckles .soundtrack.
— Sonic the Hedgehog News and Updates Tails’ Channel (@TailsChannel) June 9, 2022
The 1993 music that Chrzanowski refers to is by a Sonic the Hedgehog 3 prototype that surfaced in November 2019† The unearthed version of the game featured unused music tracks that were eventually replaced in the final version that fans know today. The prototype includes music for Carnival Night Zone, Ice Cap Zone, Launch Base Zone, the Knuckles theme, the match menu and the credits.
For Sonic Origins, it looks like Senoue took that prototype music and recreated it for use in the compilation version of Sonic 3, and fans aren’t too happy with the results.
Senoue has worked on the Sonic the Hedgehog series since 1994’s Sonic 3 and is also working on the upcoming Sonic Frontiers. You can get an idea of what his work on the prototype tracks sounds like in an analysis video from GameXplain†
As expected, Origins’ replaced Sonic 3 tracks are, frankly, absolute pants.https://t.co/rwxCvO4cxg
— Andy Robinson (@AndyPlaytonic) June 21, 2022
I fully accept the lack of Jackson tracks in Sonic 3. It is what it is
but oh no why does it sound worse than the Prototype
— Jon Cartwright (@JonComms) June 21, 2022
Sega needs to get the license for the Sonic 3 music back fr. I’m sorry, but the prototype tracks are worthless.
— LonelyGoomba (@LonelyGoomba) June 21, 2022
They ruined the prototype music for Sonic 3 pic.twitter.com/U3iOgis1S7
— pause until July (for real this time) (@_WarpFormat_) June 21, 2022
As someone who loves Sonic 3’s prototype songs, I’m baffled that Sonic Origins makes them sound worse. Especially carnival night. pic.twitter.com/yQVef3q8iy
— Tuna “Tuner” Fish (@TunaTunerFish) June 21, 2022
NO WHY DO THE PROTOTYPE SOUND LIKE THE ORIGIN
— Cherribun (@ghostbunbun) June 21, 2022
About ReseteraSonic fans aren’t happy with this element of the final product either, with the conversation about Sonic 3’s missing music dominating the conversation in the Sonic Origins review thread. Some fans say they plan to pass the collection on for that reason, while others say they’ll pick up the Steam version and wait for modders to have the original music in the game.
Sonic Origins – Screenshots
This isn’t the first controversy Sonic Origins has faced either. When the game was announced, fans were angry and confused about Sonic Origins’ Complicated DLC Strategy†
Sonic Origins launches on June 23 for PS5, PS4, Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, and PC. For more, you can check out the first 18 minutes of gameplay on PS5†
Logan Plant is a freelance writer for IGN. You can find him on Twitter @LoganJPlant.