Sonic: Mega Drive
- Sonic spins into a brand new, Classic-styled, SUPER SPECIAL one-shot “Mega Drive”! Join Sonic, Tails, Knuckles and Amy Rose on a brand new adventure—set after the fall of the Death Egg! The nefarious Dr. Eggman is trying to build a new engine of destruction: the MEGADRIVE, and it’s up to Sonic and his whole crew to stop the mad doctor and save the day! Join Sonic and his friends in this special commemorative issue celebrating the 25th Anniversary of the Blue Blur!
Mega Drive Act One
- Writer: Ian Flynn
- Line Art: Tyson Hesse
- Colors: Matt Herms
- Letters: Jack Morelli
- Editor: Vincent Lovallo
- Editor-in-Chief: Victor Gorelick
- President: Mike Pellerito
- Special thanks to: Sandra Jo, Mai Kiyotaki and to the Character Business and Licensing Department at SEGA Corporation
In Green Seaside Zone, Sonic the Hedgehog rescues Miles "Tails" Prower from a giant Crabmeat and Tails explains to him that he heard a rumor that Dr. Eggman was searching the Eastwatch Islands for items called "Ancient Gears" to use them for a new super-weapon. With this, Sonic and Tails set off to stop Eggman once again.
When the two find him, Eggman was already in the possession of an Ancient Gear. Tails helps Sonic fly up to perform a homing attack on Eggman's Egg Mobile, defeating him. This allows the duo to release the mobini that were contained in a Prison Egg and to take the first Ancient Gear that Eggman had accidentally left behind.
In Flower Park Zone, Sonic and Tails save Amy Rose from a gardening-styled Badnik with the ability to grow large spiked-weeds from normal grass. Amy tells Sonic that she wanted to join him on his travels but Sonic did not want her to get in the way. After being able to prove herself by catching a ring and by presenting her new Piko Hammer, Amy was allowed to join the boys on their adventure, allowing Sonic to be sure that she would not be kidnapped again.
Eggman appears out from the ground in a new snake mech but Sonic, Tails and Amy are able to defeat him easily due to their combined strength. Sonic collects the second Ancient Gear that Eggman dropped and Amy frees the mobinis from their prison.
In the Cascade Temple Zone, Tails expresses his inability to fly Sonic to the far side of the ruins due to the long distance and Sonic's weight. Amy tells the two to hop into bubbles and they float to the other side, only to be popped by a wall of spikes. A nearby idol starts to produce water, prompting Amy to start smashing the spiked wall to prevent drowning. Tails flies Sonic upwards to pull apart the ceiling stones as they looked loose. Tails is almost blasted away by a surge of water but Amy manages to prevent any large impact with the spiked wall. Sonic then pulls apart the ceiling stones, opening up a new room in which Knuckles the Echidna is hiding in, revealed to be controlling the traps all along.
Knuckles angrily tells Sonic to give the Chaos Emeralds to him as Eggman explained that the former was out of control as Super Sonic and Knuckles was the only person who could stop him. Eggman showed Knuckles where to set the trap and "looked after" the Master Emerald for him since Knuckles now trusted his word when he said he was reformed. Sonic tells Knuckles that he did not have the Emeralds and if he did, he would have turned into him by now. Tails then adds that Eggman was currently collecting Ancient Gears to run his new machine and he probably wanted to use the Master Emerald to power it.
Knuckles angrily sets off to find Eggman only for the mad scientist to find them first. The four race down platforms as Eggman chases them with a spiked and spinning machine until he crashes between two obstructing platforms. Sonic, Tails, Amy and Knuckles all hit Eggman at the same time, forcing him to retreat. Amy collects the third Ancient Gear, Sonic frees the contained mobinis and Knuckles joins the group in search of more adventure.
- Amy Rose
- Badnik Horde
- Dr. Eggman
- Knuckles the Echidna
- Miles "Tails" Prower
- Sonic the Hedgehog
- Super Sonic (mentioned)
- Little Planet (mentioned)
- Sonic's World
- Ancient Gears
- Chaos Emeralds (mentioned)
- Emerald Shards (mentioned)
- Master Emerald (Flashback)
- Mega Drive (mentioned)
- Piko Hammer
- Power Rings
- Prison Eggs
Off Panel "Secret Origins: & Knuckles"
Knuckles summons the Game Shark Genie by blowing on a game cartridge and the latter tells the trio that he will grant three wishes but his power diminishes with each wish. Sonic wishes for at least one Ring at all times, causing a fairly large Ring to be round his torso. Tails wishes to be able to keep up with Sonic, causing a rope to be tied to Tails' torso and Sonic's Ring, which annoys the hedgehog. Lastly, Knuckles wishes for his own game but the genie only badly pastes the words "& Knuckles" beneath a boldly polished logo for Sonic the Hedgehog 3.
- Sonic the Hedgehog 3 & Knuckles (mentioned)
- Sonic: Hit the giant enemy crab in its weak spot for massive damage, huh? Timeless.
- Tails: Yay! I wanna hear all about what you two did!
- Amy: Hee! It all started when Dr. Eggman chained Little Planet to a mountain--
- Tails: Haha--what?!
- Sonic: There you are! Glad you caught up. Think you can fly me up to the far side of the ruins?
- Tails: Ugh...it looks a bit too far for me, especially carrying your weight.
- Sonic: Excuse me?
- Sonic: Take it easy! Flying off the handle won't get the Master Emerald back!
- Knuckles: But what if he--I dunno--drops and shatters it? How would I find all the pieces?! It'd be next to impossible.
- Sonic: It's a pretty resilient rock, dude. I don't think it can be broken. So just chill a second and--
- The story takes place in the past of the Post-Super Genesis Wave timeline (before Sonic the Hedgehog #252 and Worlds Collide), and at some point after Sonic & Knuckles.
- Sonic's quote about the giant crabs' weak point is a reference to the Giant Enemy Crab meme.
- The cover artwork for this issue is a homage to the original Japanese boxart of Sonic Jam.
- The comic's title, as well as the name of Eggman's new weapon in the story, are a reference to the Sega Genesis console's Japanese and European name, the Sega Mega Drive.
- Ian Flynn's Twitter confirms that although the issue is stand-alone, it is canon to the mainstream continuity.
- The issue's art style draws heavy inspiration from the art style of the opening and ending animations of Sonic the Hedgehog CD.
- According to a tweet by Tyson Hesse, the idea for Knuckles' flashback to be done in scribbles was an idea Tyson had in the shower in the morning before the page was due.
- This is the first Archie Sonic comic since Sonic the Hedgehog #247 to not be printed with a comic shop-exclusive variant cover. The variant covers it did receive were only distributed through other means.
- The first two variant covers were distributed exclusively at the 2016 San Diego Comic-Con. The first was distributed at the Archie booth, while the second was included in the goodie bags given away at the Sonic 25th Anniversary Party event.
- The third and final variant cover was for the comics' second printing, as it was the first Sonic comic from Archie Comics to sell out.
- The 25th Anniversary Party and second printing variant covers feature variations of the main covers artwork. The Archie booth variant is the only one to feature completely different artwork.
- The Game Shark Genie is based off of two cheat cartridge lines, GameShark and Game Genie.
- Knuckles worrying that Eggman could break the Master Emerald and Sonic reassuring him that the gem is likely impossible to break is a foreshadowing of how it would do just that, three times over, during the events of Sonic Adventure, Sonic Adventure 2 and the comic's own Shattered World Crisis.
- Coincidentally, the issue was released during the time the Sonic Universe arc, "Shattered", was taking place.
- Sonic: Mega Drive has a defining feature in the fact that a second printing of the comic was made due to the high amount of copies sold of the first printing, making it currently the only Archie Sonic the Hedgehog comic book to ever achieve this feat.
- The order in which Tails, Amy, and Knuckles join Sonic is the order in which they first appear in the games.
- Ian Flynn on Twitter. Twitter (28 June 2016). Retrieved on 1 July 2016. “TheRealFTA: Mr Flynn, will 'Sonic: Mega Drive' be canon to the Archieverse? Or is it a 'In Another Time, Another Place...' kinda thing? / Ian Flynn: Canon, but sufficiently stand-alone”
- Tyson Hesse on Twitter. Twitter (6 July 2016). Retrieved on 8 July 2016. “Tyson Hesse: BTW, the idea for the Knuckles flashback to be done in cruddy scribbles was an idea I had in the shower the morning that page was due, loll”