AdventureGamebook 5: Sonic the Hedgehog

When I first started gaming, all I had was a Sega Mega Drive (or Genesis for our international readers!) and my first game was Sonic the Hedgehog.

I loved it. I could spend all day running and collecting rings, stopping the evil Robotnik and just having fun with Sonic. It wasn’t until 1996 that I first played a Mario game, so between 1992-1996 I was obsessed with Sonic. I had all the books, clothes, games and other merchandise and it even got to the point where I started to make my own books.

My mum has recently been collecting old photos of my brother for his 21st birthday and she’s struck upon some gems that I had totally forgotten about. Old diaries from school about me really enjoying school, about my exciting weekends of going to McDonalds and Hungry Jacks (highlights apparently!) and talking about Sonic. But she also found my old Sonic books that I use to make. They weren’t guides, they were more those puzzle and activity books where one page would be “Help X get out of Y!” or a variation on the Where’s Wally/Waldo thing. Even in fear of embarrassment and ridicule, I’ve decided to share these pages. Here we go!

“YO LOOK FOR EMERALDS!”

I always knew the main thing that Sonic did, apart from the ring collecting and boss battling was collect the Chaos Emeralds, clearly an inspiration for what was going to be in the book…

“Help Sonic through the maze to the emerald”

When I looked at this after all these years, I laughed. I laughed because I’d made this maze, but there’s no possible way to get to the end! There’s different sectors but they’re cut off so there’s absolutely no way to beat it! What an idiot I was.

“Knuckles is trapped in jail”

“Where’s Knuckles?” was the first thing I said when I got to this page. And something I just noticed, the only entrance to the maze is the exit to the jail…so…yeah…kids right?

“Help Sonic through the maze to the caos emerald”

At least this page here, there is a way to finish the challenge my 5 year old self created, but also multiple ways! See? This thing predates multiple choices in gaming. I’m a pioneer!

“This “is” a special stage and Sonic is in his own flying robot and look for emerald”

I always loved the special stages in the Sonic games and the ability to use objects not usually available to the hero, like the cloud in Mario Bros or the mine carts in Donkey Kong Country, this was my own tribute to both of those things. I’m not sure how this one entirely worked, but I love the idea of it all.

“This is a bonus stage, blue stars go 1 space forward, pink stars go back 1 space, red spears miss a go”

I always loved games like Snakes and Ladders and those style board games, this was my little go at doing my own, while having a Sonic influence on it all. I never got around to playing it, plus I’m not sure what the arrows do, or the rings…might have to add some rules first!

“Emrod Power”

This was the back page, with Sonic and the chaos emerald, apparently celebrating with a party hat on, the fact he has the “emrod”. What a great ending am I right?

So this was such a nice and pleasantly innocent thing to read when my mum handed it to me. I was surprised at how much effort I put into it. The drawings and mazes maybe not so much, but the stapling and piecing together to make an actual book surprised me greatly. I hope you guys enjoyed my little trip down memory lane, and if you got something similar, show us! It’d be great fun to see!

3 comments

  1. You have better level design than Sonic Team these days! I totally agree too, Emrod Power FTW!

  2. Awesome! Reminds me that my first rejection letter came from a publisher who wasn’t interested in my Super Mario choose-your-own-adventure book. GAMES, amirite.

  3. girl-germs · · Reply

    I hope you sign off on your emails with EMROD POWER! now

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