Definite Canon Games

These games are definitely part of the canon:


Sonic the Hedgehog

  • (Mega Drive, 1991)

Status of Knowledge: Manual story: translated || Character profiles: don't exist || Strategy guide: partially checked

Why is it a definite canon game? It was directly created by Sonic Team.

Where does it come in the series time line? It most likely occurs at the start, as it features none of the characters introduced in later games (although note that both Sonic and Eggman are depicted as established characters).


Sonic CD

  • (Mega CD, 1993)

Status of Knowledge: Manual story: translated || Character profiles: translated || Strategy guide: partially checked

Why is it a definite canon game? The Japanese packaging suggests it was directly created by Sonic Team (even though Yuji Naka was not involved with it). Amy and Metal Sonic were introduced in the game and have appeared in later titles as established characters.

Where does it come in the series time line? Although, Sonic CD was released in the gap between Sonic 2 and Sonic 3, it is unlikely to take place between these titles as the Sonic 3 story occurs shortly after the events of Sonic 2. Visually, Sonic CD appears to have been conceived before Sonic 2 as the sprites used in the game strongly resemble those from Sonic 1.

It is also worth noting that Sonic’s Spindash attack in the game is not as advanced as the Sonic 2 version.

Spindash in Sonic CD Spindash in Sonic the Hedgehog 2
scd_spin.JPG
scd_spin.JPG

Placing the game before Sonic 2 would help to explain Tails’ absence. (Tails has appeared in every single canon game since his Sonic 2 debut). Amy’s absence from Sonic 3 does not need explaining, as she has been absent from many adventures.

Metal Sonic poses a small problem with this placement, as Mechanical Sonic (the robot Sonic from Sonic 2 and Sonic & Knuckles) appears to be less advanced compared to the Sonic CD robot. This might suggest that the creators planned for Sonic 3 & Knuckles to come before Sonic CD. The beta screens of Sonic Mega Collection also placed Sonic CD after Sonic 3 & Knuckles on the game list menu. (It seems likely that the menu orders games by story continuity - Sonic 3D is listed before Spinball and Mean Bean Machine (both non-canon games) even though it was released after both these titles).

sonic_mega_collection_beta.jpg

Mega Collection Beta Menu screen taken from a Sonic Cult video

Conclusion: the majority of evidence suggests that Sonic CD occurs before Sonic 2.


Sonic the Hedgehog 2

  • (Mega Drive, 1992)

Status of Knowledge: Manual story: translated || Character profiles: untranslated || Strategy guide: partially checked

Why is it a definite canon game? It was directly created by Sonic Team. Events in this game were explicitly referenced in Sonic the Hedgehog 3 and subtly referenced in Sonic Adventure.

Where does it come in the series time line? Some time after Sonic 1. (It cannot occur after Sonic 3/later games, as it features the formal introduction of Tails, who appeared in later games).


Sonic the Hedgehog 3 & Knuckles– Sonic’s game

  • (Mega Drive, 1994)

Status of Knowledge: Manual story: translated (S3) (S&K) || Character profiles: partly translated (S3) (S&K) || Strategy guide: checked

Background info: This is, according to Sonic Mega Collection, the complete version of Sonic the Hedgehog 3.
The games of Sonic and Knuckles represent individual stories.

Why is it a definite canon game? It was directly created by Sonic Team. Events in this game were explicitly referenced in Sonic Adventure.

Where does it come in the series time line? According to the story provided with Sonic 3, it occurs shortly after Sonic 2.


Sonic the Hedgehog 3 & Knuckles– Knuckles' game

  • (Mega Drive, 1994)

Status of Knowledge: Manual story: translated (S3) (S&K) || Character profiles: partly translated (S3) (S&K) || Strategy guide: checked

Background info – This is Knuckles’ story.

Why is it a definite canon game? It was directly created by Sonic Team.

Where does it come in the series time line? Shortly after Sonic’s game.

**How do we know that Sonic’s game comes before Knuckles? **
1. In Sonic’s game, Angel Island is clearly in the sea, whereas in Knuckles’ story, it is floating in the sky.

ai_sonic.jpg

Thanks to Crazy Penguin for this observation

2. In Sonic’s game, Sonic & Tails encounter and destroy an army of Eggrobo robots in Sky Sanctuary. At the end of Sonic’s game (in Sonic & Knuckles or in Sonic 3 & Knuckles when only the 7 Chaos Emeralds have been collected), an Eggrobo rises from the scrap heap. As only a single Eggrobo appears in Knuckles’ game (taking over the role of Dr Eggman), this Eggrobo must be the one that appeared at the end of Sonic’s game.

The Eggrobo rises in Sonic & Tails' ending The Eggrobo takes over the role of Eggman
eggrobo_st.jpg
eggrobo_k.jpg

3. The Death Egg is completely destroyed in Sonic’s game. It does not make an appearance in Knuckles’ story.
4. Sonic and Knuckles are enemies in Sonic’s game and do not become friends until the end. Sonic doesn’t appear in Knuckles' story until the ending, where he is depicted as the echidna’s friend.

Sonic's game Knuckles' ending
friend_stk.jpg
friend_ks.jpg

Sonic Adventure

  • (Dreamcast, 1998; Updated as "Sonic Adventure DX" Gamecube, 2003)

Status of Knowledge: Manual story: translated (US) || Character profiles: untranslated || Strategy guide: translated

Why is it a definite canon game? This game was directly created by Sonic Team. It also references (both explicitly and implicitly) to the events of the Mega Drive games.

Where does it come in the series time line? The presence of Knuckles and Amy as established characters places it after the Mega Drive series. As the game contains subtle references to Sonic the Fighters (such as Amy’s Piko Hammer and Tails’ Workshop/Tail Whip) it probably also occurs some time after this title. Based on the release date, the most likely placement is after Sonic 3D.


Sonic Adventure 2

  • (Dreamcast, 2001; Updated as "Sonic Adventure 2 Battle" Gamecube, 2002)

Status of Knowledge: Manual story: translated (US) || Character profiles: untranslated || Strategy guide: translated

Why is it a definite canon game? This game was fully created by Sonic Team. It explicitly references to the events of Sonic Adventure.

Where does it come in the series time line? In the game, Rouge presents a newspaper that confirms that Tails was presented with a Chaos Emerald shortly after the events of Sonic Adventure 1. In order for the newspaper to be a valid confirmation of Tails’ possession of an Emerald, it must have only been written a few days before Rouge obtained it. Therefore, the game takes place soon after Sonic Adventure.

sa2_1.jpg
sa2_2.jpg

Sonic Advance

  • (Gameboy Advance, 2001)

Status of Knowledge: Manual story: translated|| Character profiles: untranslated || Strategy guide: checked

Why is it a definite canon game? Although developed by Dimps, the game was produced under the supervision of Sonic Team. Sonic Advance 2 is a definite canon game as it formally introduces Cream the Rabbit. Many of the boss robots from Advance 2 have prequels in Advance 1, thereby making the game a definite part of the canon.

Where does it come in the series time line?
As Sonic Advance was released in 2002, the story line initially appears to occur after the events of Sonic Adventure 2. The Chaos Emeralds were last seen in outer space in Adventure 2 and Sonic Advance continues with this location. A problem with this placement is that the moon was partly destroyed in Adventure 2, yet is shown to be complete in Sonic Advance. This problem has become less of an issue with the release of Sonic Heroes and Sonic Advance 3, both of which show an un-destroyed moon, suggesting the natural satellite was ‘repaired’ at an unspecified point.

The release of Sonic Adventure DX in 2003 (an update of the original Sonic Adventure from 1999) slightly disrupted this placement. In the game, the appearance of the Ice Stone is always followed with a cut-scene of Cream flying past. This strongly indicates that the story of Sonic Adventure has been re-written to suggest that Cream provided the Ice Stone to help Sonic, Tails and Big gain access to Ice Cap. As Sonic Advance 2 is the first game where Sonic meets Cream, three possibilities are raised for the placement of Advance 1 & 2 in the time line of the Sonic series:

1. Advance 1 & 2 come before Sonic Adventure. As Cream is friends with Sonic, she drops the Ice Stone to help him.

2. Advance 1 & 2 come after Sonic Adventure. In Advance 2, it is clear that although Sonic had not met Cream before, she was fully aware of his reputation and so, due to her sweet nature, left him the Ice Stone even though she did not know him personally.

Sadv2_1.JPG
Sadv2_2.JPG

3. Cream’s appearance in Adventure DX is nothing more than a meaningless cameo that should be discounted, which places Advance 1 & 2 after Sonic Adventure.

All three of these possibilities are equally valid.


Sonic Advance 2

  • (Gameboy Advance, 2002)

Status of Knowledge: Manual story: translated (US) || Character profiles: partly translated || Strategy guide: unchecked

Why is it a definite canon game? Although developed by Dimps, the game was produced under the supervision of Sonic Team. The game formally introduces Cream, who later appeared in the definite canon game Sonic Heroes without an introduction.

Where does it come in the series time line? It comes shortly after the events of Sonic Advance. However, the exact placement of both these titles in the series is unknown (See Sonic Advance 1).


Sonic Pinball Party

  • (Gameboy Advance, 2003)

Status of Knowledge: Manual story:untranslated untranslated || Character profiles: unobtained || Strategy guide: doesn't exist

Why is it a definite canon game? Although developed by Jupiter, the game was produced under the supervision of Sonic Team. In the definite canon game Sonic Heroes, Amy makes a comment about the similarity of Casinopolis and Casino Park. Pinball Party is the only game where she is shown entering Casinopolis, which thus confirms its validity.

heroes_casinopolis.jpg

Where does it come in the series time line? Both Shadow’s name and Cream make minor cameos in the game. Although it is not clear if these cameos are a valid part of the storyline, it seems to suggest that the creators intended for the game to come after the second installments of the Advance and Adventure series.

pinball_party_cream.JPG

Cream and Cheese host the games held in Casinopolis
(However, this doesn't appear in story mode)

pinball_party_shadow.JPG

Shadow is in the pinball tournament
(but so is NiGHTS, so it might not be a valid part of the story)


Sonic Heroes

  • (Gamecube (and PS2/X-Box), 2003) Status of Knowledge: Manual story: translated (US) || Character profiles: translated (US) || Strategy guide: translated

Why is it a definite canon game? It was directly created by Sonic Team and partly continues the story line of Sonic Adventure 2.

Where does it come in the series time line? The presence of Cream and Shadow as established characters places this after the events of Adventure 2 and Advance 2.


Sonic Battle

  • (Gameboy Advance, 2003) Status of Knowledge: Manual story: translated (US) || Character profiles: unobtained || Strategy guide: obtained

Why is it a definite canon game? Although developed by Jupiter, the game was produced under the supervision of Sonic Team. The game makes several explicit and implicit references to previous games and the story of Sonic Adventure 2.

Where does it come in the series time line? Although released before Heroes due to the delayed release date of the latter, Rouge’s knowledge of Omega (who was formally introduced in Heroes) places the game after the events of Sonic Heroes.

sbattle.JPG

Sonic Advance 3

  • (Gameboy Advance, 2004) Status of Knowledge: Manual story: translated (US) || Character profiles: translated (US) || Strategy guide: partly translated

Why is it a definite canon game? Although developed by Dimps, the game was produced under the supervision of Sonic Team.

Where does it come in the series time line? After the events of Sonic Battle, as it features the robot Gmerl who was an evolution of Emerl (who was introduced in Battle).


Shadow the Hedgehog

  • (Nintendo DS, 2005)

Status of Knowledge: Manual story: translated (US) || Character profiles: translated (US) || Strategy guide: unobtained

Why is it a definite canon game? The game was produced by Sonic Team.

Where does it come in the series time line? After the events of Sonic Heroes but before Sonic battle, as Shadow is still suffering from amnesia (in Heroes Shadow had lost his memories, which were restored in Sonic Battle).


Sonic Rush

  • (Nintendo DS, 2005)

Status of Knowledge: Manual story: translated (US) || Character profiles: translated (US) || Strategy guide: unobtained

Why is it a definite canon game? Although developed by Dimps, the game was produced under the supervision of Sonic Team.

Where does it come in the series time line? Most likely after the events of Sonic Advance 3. It makes references to elements that were first appeared in Advance 3, such as the new look flickies and Cream's house.

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