- Gebundene Ausgabe: 300 Seiten
- Verlag: Udon Entertainment Corp (Januar 2013)
- Sprache: Englisch
- ISBN-10: 1926778561
- ISBN-13: 978-1926778563
- Größe und/oder Gewicht: 2,8 x 21,3 x 23,4 cm
- Durchschnittliche Kundenbewertung: Schreiben Sie die erste Bewertung
- Amazon Bestseller-Rang: Nr. 207.833 in Fremdsprachige Bücher (Siehe Top 100 in Fremdsprachige Bücher)
The History of Sonic the Hedgehog (Englisch) Gebundene Ausgabe – Januar 2013
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The History of Sonic Hedgehog is a befitting book that celebrates Sonic's 20th anniversary. It was originally published by Pix'N Love Editions in French and this English edition is published by Udon. It's a handsome 300-page hardcover with a nice cover. I really like the cute 2D art of Sonic on the cover as compared to the 3D version on the back cover.
The book covers roughly three main parts. The first looks at the history, the second on the games and the last part on characters and extras.
The history of Sonic is intermingled with the story of SEGA, before it was even known as SEGA (it was called "Service Games"). It's an interesting flashback to the creation of the Sonic through the accounts of the developers, and to the rise and fall of SEGA as a console maker, and the transformation into a multi-platform publisher.
The pages are beautifully laid out with wonderful photos and screenshots. There are photos of consoles I never knew existed. Three lengthy interviews included are with the creators Yuji Naka the programmer, graphic designer Naoto Oshima and producer Takashi Iizuka of Sonic Generations (2011).
The second part focuses on the games. There are eight 2D games, ten 3D games, sixteen handheld ones and 23 spin-offs over the span of two decades. I only played the first three games so I'm reading about the rest for the first time. Each game has a short but informative writeup. The screenshots are a bit small though. I wished there were more and bigger. Stage designs for the games are gorgeous.
The last section has all the main characters and their profiles. The interesting bits are the Sonic cameos in other games.
This book is a nostalgic trip into the history of Sonic and SEGA.
Highly recommended for fans of the game.
(There are more pictures of the book on my blog. Just visit my Amazon profile for the link.)
The book is broken down into several big sections with quite different focuses for each one. The first hundred pages or so goes into great detail about Sonic's real life history. Starting all the way back in the 1960's when Sega Enterprises was formed, to Sonic's inception as a character, all the way until the present, the book goes into great detail. It's a really fascinating read that gives a lot of insight into Sonic's history in the context of the bigger Sega picture, and the even bigger picture of the video gaming industry as a whole. Sonic is a trailblazer in many ways, and the history section of this book really makes you appreciate that. To end the history section are a series of really interesting interviews with some of the most important people behind Sonic, such as the ingenious Yuji Naka, arguably the father of Sonic, Naoto Oshima, the man who gave him his iconic look, and Takashi Iizuka, who has been his artistic director since Sonic Adventure. I love these kinds of interviews in books of this nature, and the quality of writing and information in this book is fantastic. I love it all. Great start.
After the history section, there are four big sections that are all about Sonic's games. They are broken down into 2D, 3D, handheld, and spin-off categories respectively. Some games get a lot of page space, such as Sonic the Hedgehog 2, which has about five or six pages. Other, more obscure titles, such as Sonic Shuffle, has only one or two. Some get less than that. The majority of the info is a summary of the game itself, its content, its innovations, a little real life history, features, a bit about the story, some really interesting trivia, etc. Each game also features a lot of great visuals, ranging from concept/official art to actual screen shots of the games they're from. It's all really well-done and classy. Even screenshots from the older systems and handhelds look very crisp and colorful. It's great.
Next is a rather large section about the characters of the Sonic universe. From the obvious like Sonic, Tails, and Knuckles, to the totally obscure like Jet the Hawk, there's quite a few characters represented. I was saddened, however, to see some of the more obscure ones don't get their own page, such as Fang the Sniper (aka Nack the Weasel), Ray the Flying Squirrel, or Mighty the Armadillo. Characters as obscure as these are thankfully referenced in the entries regarding the games they appear in (Sonic the Fighters in Fang's case, and SegaSonic the Hedgehog for Mighty and Ray). Each character that does make the cut in this section gets some history and in-universe information, as well as lots of beautifully printed pictures ranging from concept art, to official art, to actual screen shots. Again, as is the case in the entire book, all of the pictures are beautiful to look at, and the information is quite intriguing. The only let-down is the entry for the "Badniks and Bosses," where each game only gets about three pictures to show, and only 11 (with most being totally obscure or downright horrendous in the case of Sonic 06').
The book ends with an "Extra Zone" section that just boils down to a list of all the obscure, bizarre cameos that Sonic has made in other games over the years, like being able to use Sonic as bait in Sega Bass Fishing, or having him appear as a map shape in Shining Force II (A real classic). This part is quite silly and and enjoyable, but nonessential if you ask me. I would have preferred they ditched this section in favor of putting more pictures and info in the "Badniks and Bosses" part of the character section, but oh well.
All in all, this is an awesome book for a Sonic fan. Seeing as how Sonic the Hedgehog 2 was my first video game as a child and is still one of my all-time favorites, and given that I spent years of my life obsessing over Sonic's next adventure for years as a kid even into my teens, I think it's safe to say I'm a massive Sonic fan. I've been with him in the best of times, and endured his worst of times. That been said, this book was a real treat for me to read. The information is fascinating and full of insight, the art and pictures in the book scream high-quality and attention to detail, and that cover, featuring Classic Sonic on the front and Modern Sonic on the back, is just downright rad. The whole book is just awesome, and really captures Sonic's trademark "coolness" and attitude. Go ahead and add this book to the ever-growing list of fantastic publications from Udon (this book actually was made by the French comapany "Pix'N Love, and localized and published here by Udon). So whether you yourself are a big fan of the blue blur, or you have one in your life that you want to buy a gift for, look no further than this book.
Highly recommend if you're a longtime Sonic fan like me or you're a new Sonic fan and you want to know all about Sonic and some of SEGA's history then you should pick this up.
Here you have almost everything you might ever want to know about the Blue Blur. I enjoy reading the background information about the development of the games. My personal favorite section (so far) is the "Bonus Zone" of the history section. It features interviews with three of the developers of Sonic, including his designer who says "Dragon Ball" and Akira Toriyama were big inspirations in his life. If you quickly flip through the pages, you'll even notice it's like a flip book and Sonic does some of his signature moves!
Boasting aside, there are some setbacks. I have come across some minor punctuation errors (missing periods, etc.), but that can happen in any book. I'm a little disappointed that the first two games feature some screenshots at the top of their respective pages with the zones of the games, but this stops after Sonic 2. I know it would be troublesome to fit them in, since games like "Sonic and Sega All-Stars Racing" only have half a page of information, but an index of some sort in the back with all of the levels would have been nice. Lastly, this being a translation of a French book, it says nothing about the American comics or television series. The Japanese OVA and "Sonic X" aren't even addressed. This encyclopedia should definitely mention something about Sonic's crossing over into other forms of media, especially since it repeatedly mentions that he isn't just a video game icon, but a pop culture icon of this generation.
Overall, if you have more than two Sonic games, or one of the compilation games, you should buy this book. You'll find out so much information that's quite enjoyable! I even showed this to my friends. I feared I'd be seen as a nerd, but they actually enjoyed reading along, too!
P.S. My favorite part of the book is when an interviewee is asked if Michael Jackson really did work on the music for Sonic 3. His response is simply that he knows Sega wouldn't want him to share that information, so it will always be a rumor.
The flaws here are two main things. The first is that this book repeats itself quite a bit, space and text that could have been used better, since there is so much that could be said about Sonic. The second is that it is actually missing a few details, nothing major, but it still disappoints me to a minor extent.
If your looking for more in depth summaries of the book's contents, the other reviews all do that quite well in my opinion.