Watch a Sonic fan try to perfect-run the glitchy, obscure, handheld Sonic 1 in front of a Sonic skeptic. What could possibly go wrong?

OK, so Sonic Week was only one day during our actual Mario Week. And that single day was last Thursday. Needless to say, we intended to post this then, before Gamescom and technical issues meant it didn't happen on time. But that's actually quite fitting - this 'perfect run' attempt is anything but perfect, so let's just classify it as a 'catalogue of errors' and accept it for what it is: A video with us in it, as I try to finish an ancient Sonic game without getting hit.

So here it is: The whole 1991 classic from start to finish, with myself and Sonic skeptic Dave Houghton providing commentary:

A little background, if anyone actually cares. The game in question is Sonic The Hedgehog on Game Gear - a different game entirely than the Genesis/Mega Drive version, though sharing some level themes and music. It was the second Sega game I personally owned (Super Monaco GP was the first) and, as such, much of 1991 was spent learning this game's ins and outs.

The game is probably the best of the 8-bit Sonics, with a superb structure and exceptional replay value thanks to the hunt for the emeralds. The 'perfect run' attempt was meant to emulate what I had achieved the weekend before on an actual Game Gear - getting all the way through the game with all 6 Chaos Emeralds, all extra lives hidden in the levels and bonus stages... without getting hit even once by an enemy. Just to prove it happened:

But alas, this time it didn't quite pan out that way. Still here are...

Some things to look out for

On our 'preview window' during recording, the alternate frames of Sonic and his shield meant that we were stuck looking at only the shield sprite for most of the time, but the final video is fine. So sorry that we lost the shield deliberately, but it had to be done.

5:17: Witness a rush for every single ring in the special stage that ends with three seconds left on the clock. Skill.

14:50: We break the game by rolling across the long bridge before the second boss, resulting in the game's memory screwing up and the boss and end of level cage behaving in an 'interesting' manner...

17:25: Dammit.

26:20: A glitch in the Gamecube emulator (not in the original game) that causes the entire level to flood, drowning Sonic. Poor little mite - never stood a chance.

40:40: A strange glitch that makes sonic suddenly be running at full speed for no reason, at exactly the point of the game that you need that not to happen. Meh.

42:00: Winess Dave's explosion of incredulous rage as he sees a bit that's like Super Mario Bros 3. Hehehe.

And... that's that. It's surprising just how many glitches and bugs are actually in there when I play it through for someone else. To me, they're just quirks to work with or avoid. But I maintain it's still a great game, and I hope it comes to 3DS soon (minus the Gamecube's water glitch of course). Do you? Let us know what you think in the comments.


Sonic Week


  • helen-tyler - August 22, 2012 8:51 a.m.

    as Antonio replied I'm surprised that a mom can earn $4758 in 1 month on the computer. have you seen this web site (Click "Home" on the menu bar)
  • Apastron - August 21, 2012 3:37 p.m.

    A good watch. Reminds me of the full-access previews of old. *sob*
  • Clovin64 - August 21, 2012 11:54 a.m.

    More of these vids please! Make Cundy play through Heavy Rain while Hooters praises David Cage's genius.
  • TheWoolyMammoth - August 21, 2012 7:43 a.m.

    I must admit I've watched this a couple of times now. I had the Master System version when I was younger, which to be fair is somewhat harder, especially the final boss. Playing it on the Wii Virtual Console is cool and all, but it's hard going back to the PAL version's 50hz. Can't wait to play the GG version, I've just bought a copy of it on eBay for my newly acquired Game Gear :D
  • ultimatepunchrod - August 21, 2012 7:30 a.m.

    This is awesome. I enjoy these little slices of gaming history with someone who grew up playing the game, especially since the Game Gear was not a popular item here in the US.
  • SDHoneymonster - August 21, 2012 7:17 a.m.

    Houghton's like that annoying mate of yours who is desperate to point out plot holes in all your favourite films, isn't he? If you don't know that guy Dave H, IT'S YOU.
  • GR_JustinTowell - August 22, 2012 8:17 a.m.

    Sometimes I really wish we had a 'like' button...
  • PistonTwister - August 21, 2012 7:07 a.m.

    That was great. You should make it regular guys. Maybe not 50 mins long, but one of you should pick a game you like that the other is unsure about and do a playtest.
  • fourteenaha - August 21, 2012 6:19 a.m.

    Please do another of these! Preferable with another glitchy game that one of you doesn't like,
  • ObliqueZombie - August 21, 2012 6:15 a.m.

    HAHAHA, I laughed at David's rant. Good run, though, Justin. I couldn't do that even after years of practice.

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