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Sonic News Network
Sonic News Network

It’s time to usher the past into the future in this enhanced recreation of Sonic CD!

— Tagline

Sonic the Hedgehog CD, also known as Sonic CD Classic, is an enhanced remaster of the original Sonic the Hedgehog CD released for the Sega CD. The game was developed by Christian Whitehead and published by Sega in December 2011. It was released digitally on multiple platforms, including the PlayStation 3 through PlayStation Network, the Xbox 360 through the Xbox Live Arcade, and iOS and Android mobile phones, along with being available on PC through Steam in January of the following year.

The port was later added to the Sega Forever service on 1 February 2018 for mobile platforms. Following the announcement of the Sonic Origins compilation, Sonic the Hedgehog CD was delisted as a standalone title on 20 May 2022,[14] except on mobile devices.[15]


Spoiler warning: Plot, ending details or any kind of information follow.

The title screen of the 2011 remaster of Sonic the Hedgehog CD.

Little Planet is a tiny planet filled with beauty and mystery. Appearing over Never Lake for one month per year, it is a place where the past, present and future collide, thanks to the Time Stones that lie within the planet.[16]

Not too long after Little Planet makes its annual appearance over Never Lake, Sonic travels to Never Lake, hoping to see this cosmic event. Along the way, he is followed by Amy Rose. However, upon arriving in Never Lake, he finds Little Planet chained to a mountain and covered in a mechanic shell. As it turns out, Dr. Eggman has captured the planet to find the Time Stones, with which he will be able to conquer the world.[16]

Wasting no time, Sonic runs across the chain that keeps Little Planet tied to his world, and lands in Palmtree Panic, where he learns that he must use Time Warp signs to travel to the past, where he will be able to destroy robot teleporters and secure a bright future for Little Planet's different regions. Eventually though, he meets Amy Rose, who falls in love with him and tries to hug him. Ignoring her, Sonic continues his adventure.

After encountering and defeating Eggman in Palmtree Panic, Sonic continues onward to Collision Chaos, with Amy following him. Suddenly however, Metal Sonic, a robot built by Eggman to replicate Sonic's abilities, appears out of nowhere, grabs Amy, and escapes with her. Now having to save Little Planet and Amy at the same time, Sonic continues across Little Planet, destroying Eggman's various contraptions and defeating Eggman repeatedly along the way.

Eventually, Sonic ends up in Stardust Speedway. There, he meets Eggman and Metal Sonic, the latter of whom challenges him to a deadly race, with Amy being tied up at the finish line. After Sonic wins, Metal Sonic is destroyed and Eggman is forced to retreat while Sonic frees Amy. Afterwards, Sonic goes to Metallic Madness, where he finds Eggman in the Egg Spinner. After the doctor is defeated, a chain reaction is triggered, causing the shell that covers Little Planet to break apart and prompting Sonic to leave Little Planet with Amy. After he leaves Amy in a safe place, Sonic runs away and sees Little Planet get freed. After that, the game's ending will depend on the player's progress:

  • If the player has not been able to secure a good future for all the Zones in the game, Eggman will escape using a hovercraft of his with the blue Time Stone in hand. Spotting him, Sonic throws a rock at him, causing his vehicle to explode. After the credits roll, Little Planet is seen being restored to its mechanized state while the text "TRY AGAIN" appears.
  • If the player has managed to secure a good future for every Zone in the game, Little Planet will disappear in a trail of glowing blue particles that resemble Sonic's face. In a post-credits scene, various seeds are thrown from the sky, causing many Little Planet flowers to grow on Sonic's world. The text "YOU'RE TOO COOL!" will be shown.


Image Character Biography
Sonic and Amy 1.png Sonic the Hedgehog With a spirit like the wind, Sonic is the world's fastest hedgehog who lives for adventure. Despite his carefree attitude, he has a strong sense of justice and is always ready to help those in need.[17]
Amy Rose A bright and energetic girl who likes fortune telling and mystic things. Amy is drawn to Little Planet after a tarot card reading which tells of a destined encounter with Sonic.[17]
CD Eggman.png Dr. Eggman (aka Dr. Ivo Robotnik) With an IQ of 300 and a love of machines, Eggman dreams of world conquest in order to create his own robotic utopia "Eggmanland". He sees the Time Stones as the perfect tool for world conquest and will stop at nothing to get them.[18]
Metal Sonic 1.png Metal Sonic The ultimate robot doppelganger, Metal Sonic was built by Eggman to rival Sonic's power and speed in every way. Programmed to follow Eggman's agenda, he's out to cause trouble for not only Sonic, but poor Amy too![18]


Sonic in Palmtree Panic, the first Round in the game.

Sonic the Hedgehog CD is a 2D side-scroller video game with the same gameplay as the original game. Here, the player takes control of either Sonic or Tails. While their core movements, which are running and jumping, are the same, Sonic can perform a Super Peel Out to gain speed in an instant, while Tails is capable of flight and swimming underwater. To move their playable character in the mobile versions, the player is provided with a virtual Controlpadds.png on the left and a jump button on the right.

As with the original game, Sonic the Hedgehog CD is divided into seven Rounds, each split into three Zones, the third of which features a boss fight. The player has to beat these Zones in less than ten minutes to progress in the game.

New features

  • With the capabilities of the Retro Engine, the game runs at a consistent 60 frames per second (FPS), supports widescreen and online leaderboards.
  • A pause menu is featured while the game is being paused. In the mobile versions, there is a Restart option for the player to restart a stage at the cost of one life (with the Restart option disabled if the player is on their last life).
  • Miles "Tails" Prower is an unlockable playable character featuring his moveset from Sonic the Hedgehog 3. He is unlocked upon beating the game as Sonic for the first time.
  • Both the Japanese and American soundtracks of the game are included, with the player having the option to switch from one soundtrack to the other. All stage tracks loop properly.
  • The player can switch to using the Spin Dash from the Sega Mega Drive games. This also changes the camera from the original version's speed-based camera with the original Spin Dash and the character-centered camera as with other Mega Drive games for the more common Spin Dash. It also toggles the air speed cap mechanic, where the playable character will not lose speed upon running off the edge by any means (whereas in the original game and the earlier Sonic games, they would slow down upon running off the edge and could only maintain speed while they were using the Spin Attack).
  • Entering the code "PCM: 32, DA: 8" on the Sound Test briefly shows a mock-up image of "Desert Dazzle", a stage that was once planned for the remake. It also enables Tails while choosing a stage from the Stage Select menu.


  • The Japanese tracks use sound files from the 510 prototype of the Sega CD version between loops.
  • The Japanese themes "Sonic - You Can Do Anything" and "Cosmic Eternity - Believe in Yourself" are replaced with instrumental versions due to Casey Rankin's death in 2009, making Sega unable to obtain the rights to the lyrics in time for the game's release.
  • When the score is tallied after completing a stage, the score tallying occurs after the music track finishes playing rather than occurring at the same time.
  • In Palmtree Panic, the floating platform at the beginning with Rings on it falls down after the player stands on it, whereas in the original, it stays in place.
  • In Collision Chaos, sound effects have being added when using the pinball flippers.
  • There is a chime before the underwater countdown begins.
  • In Tidal Tempest, the air bubbles spawn slightly higher.
  • In Stardust Speedway, the spotlights in the background in the present move fluidly and do not flicker.
  • During the Metal Sonic race at Stardust Speedway, the bad future theme always plays in the background, regardless of which soundtrack is chosen.
  • During the Time Attack mode, Amy Rose does not show up at the end of Stardust Speedway; she is instead replaced by a Capsule.
  • During the Egg Spinner boss battle, two light beam barriers have been added to each side.
  • The Egg Spinner now has smooth animation sequences, most notably during the attack with only three blades left. In the original, it jumped between still frames while a loud mechanical sound played with each shift as it rotated.
  • The UFOs that carry the Power Sneakers power-up in the Special Stages have been recolored blue, most likely to better differentiate between the purple ones, which carry the Super Ring power-up. In the original, this difference was only visible from a short distance, with gold stripes indicating rings and silver having the Speed Shoes.
  • In the Special Stages, the "warning" sound effect signifying low time starts at four seconds remaining, as opposed to the original's fourteen seconds.
  • Sonic kicks up dust clouds when he skids, as he does in Sonic the Hedgehog 2 and future games.
  • The time taken for passing through the Time Warp is actually a bit longer. Some objects that activated warping in the original Mega CD game do not do so in this remaster.
  • The Level Select menu and Sound Test can no longer be accessed by code. Instead, they have to be unlocked in the same manner as the D.A. Garden and Visual Mode.
    • The FM portion of the Sound Test is now PCM. All "past" tracks have been moved to "D.A.", along with the rest of the soundtrack.
  • While the debug mode is enabled, power-up monitors can be used more than once.
    • Ring objects are now available to be placed, unlike the original.
    • There is no background music that plays after the "S" monitor has been struck.
  • When the Japanese soundtrack is enabled, the track that plays in the Time Attack menu is an instrumental version of "Brand-new World" from Sonic the Hedgehog - Remix.
  • Rather than the Time Attack theme being used after entering the code for accessing hidden pictures, the Quartz Quadrant good future theme plays instead.
  • In order to access the Special Stage Time Attack, the player has to select the "Next" icon, rather than pushing left.
  • Certain mobile versions of the game have haptic or "rumble" feedback, while certain others are missing certain sound effects, like "skid" and "spin" (the latter's case does not apply when releasing a Spin Dash or Super Peel Out).

Tails gameplay differences

  • Tails cannot use the Super Peel Out.
  • The opening and ending cutscenes have been removed.
    • The ending cutscene was replaced with a credits screen which lists the staff who worked on the remastered version.
  • Rather than a voice clip being used after getting a 1-Up, the Time Stone and destroyed robot transporter sound effect is used instead.
  • Amy Rose is entirely absent from Tails' gameplay.
    • As such, neither she or Metal Sonic will show up at Collision Chaos Zone 1, and the Winding Tunnel path will be opened by default.
    • She has been replaced by a Capsule in Stardust Speedway Zone 3, much like the Time Attack mode.
  • There is no penalty for standing idle for three minutes as Tails.

Other modes

Intro Movie

Intro Movie plays the intro cutscene of the game.

Time Attack

Main article: Time Attack

Time Attack is an extra mode in which the player has to beat Zones and Special Stages in the least amount of time possible. In addition, many extras can be unlocked after beating certain records in the Special Stages in this mode.

Help & Options

  • Instructions: Gives the player a short summary of the story, the characters, and the main gimmicks and features of the game.
  • Options: This mode includes the following options:
    • Music: Allows the player to set the volume of the background music of the game.
    • Sound FX: Allows the player to set the volume of the sound effects of the game.
  • Spin Dash: Allows the player to choose one of the two types of Spin Dashes: "Genesis", the one featured in Sonic the Hedgehog 2 and Sonic the Hedgehog 3 & Knuckles; and "Original", the one that appears in the original Sonic the Hedgehog CD. The only difference between these options is the shape of the Spin Dash, with the "Genesis" form being a tilted oval and the "Original" being a circle. There are no gameplay changes between the two.
  • Staff credits: Shows the staff involved in the remaster of the game.
  • About: Shows the current version of the game and allows the player to read the terms and privacy of the re-release.


Soundtrack allows the player to switch between the Japanese (JP) and American (US) soundtracks of the game.


Extras contains the following modes:

  • D. A. Garden: The player can listen to the present, bad and good future tracks of the game and show a view of Little Planet throughout these timelines. Various characters can appear on the screen as well. The player can also interact with Little Planet by changing its rotation, moving it across the screen, and changing its size. To unlock this feature, the player has to have gathered a total of twenty-five minutes or less in all Special Stages in the Time Attack mode combined, or have collected all seven Time Stones.
  • Visual Mode: This mode allows the player to see the intro and ending sequences (bad and good), as well as a "Pencil Test" animation. Visual Mode is unlocked alongside D. A. Garden.
  • Sound Test: The player can listen to all the tracks in the game and play every sound effect. This mode is unlocked when a total of four minutes or less have been gathered in all Special Stages in the Time Attack mode combined.
  • Stage Select: The player can play any Zone in the game at any timeline: "A" represents present; "B" takes the player to the past timeline; "C" is for the good future; while "D" is for the bad future. They can also play with the progress they had in the save file used prior to entering this mode, including Time Stones collected and playable character. This mode is unlocked after having gathered five minutes or less in all Special Stages in the Time Attack mode combined.

Exit Game

Exit Game allows the player to leave the game.


These are the achievements and trophies for the Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, Steam, Android and iOS versions of Sonic the Hedgehog CD.

Image Name Description Trophy Class Gamescore
Sonic the Hedgehog CD achievement - 88 Miles Per Hour.png 88 Miles per Hour Travel through time.
PSN Trophy Bronze.png
Sonic the Hedgehog CD achievement - Just one hug is enough.png Just one hug is enough Get a hug from Amy.
PSN Trophy Bronze.png
Sonic the Hedgehog CD achievement - Paradise Found.png Paradise Found Complete a zone in the Good Future.
PSN Trophy Bronze.png
Sonic the Hedgehog CD achievement - Take the High Road.png Take the High Road Pass the upper Signpost in Collision Chaos Zone 2.
PSN Trophy Bronze.png
Sonic the Hedgehog CD achievement - King of the Rings.png King of the Rings Collect 200 Rings.
PSN Trophy Silver.png
Sonic the Hedgehog CD achievement - Statue Savior.png Statue Savior Find the angel statue in Wacky Workbench.
PSN Trophy Bronze.png
Sonic the Hedgehog CD achievement - Heavy Metal.png Heavy Metal Defeat Metal Sonic without getting hurt.
PSN Trophy Bronze.png
Sonic the Hedgehog CD achievement - All Stages Clear!.png All Stages Clear! Finish the game.
PSN Trophy Silver.png
Sonic the Hedgehog CD achievement - Treasure Hunter.png Treasure Hunter Collect all the Time Stones.
PSN Trophy Gold.png
Sonic the Hedgehog CD achievement - Dr. Eggman Got Served.png Dr. Eggman Got Served Destroy Dr. Eggman's final machine.
PSN Trophy Bronze.png
Sonic the Hedgehog CD achievement - Just In Time!.png Just in Time! Complete the Time Attack mode in under 25 minutes.
PSN Trophy Silver.png
Sonic the Hedgehog CD achievement - Savior of the Planet.png Savior of the Planet Destroy all the robot teleporters and Metal Sonic holograms in the past.
PSN Trophy Silver.png


When Sega announced which of their games they would like to release in the iOS App Store, Christian Whitehead showcased a concept demo of the game being played on his iPod touch in 2009.[19] The port is not a direct emulation of the original Sega CD version, but rather it was developed from scratch using Whitehead's Retro Engine. He then contacted Sega to tell them about his release plans.


Aggregate scores
Aggregator Score
GameRankings 84% (X360)[20]
78% (PS3)[20]
Metacritic 82% (X360)[21]
80% (PS3)[22]
93% (iOS)[23]
Review scores
Publication Score
Destructoid 9.0/10 (X360)[24]
GameSpot 8.5/10 (PS3)[25]
GamesRadar 9/10[26]
IGN 8.5/10 (X360)[27]
9.0/10 (iOS)[28]
Official Xbox Magazine (US) 9.0/10 (X360)[29]
Entity Award
Pocket Gamer Windows Phone Game of the Year[30]

The 2011 re-release of Sonic the Hedgehog CD received positive reviews with Metacritic assigning the PlayStation Network version an 80% (based on 12 reviews),[22] the Xbox Live Arcade version an 82% (based on 20 reviews)[21] and the iOS version of the game a 93%.[23] The iOS version became the highest rated Sonic game on the website as well, along with being the website's second-highest rated iOS game of 2011 (losing only to World of Goo);[31]

IGN praised the 2011 remaster, scoring 8.5/10 for the Xbox 360 version[27] and 9.0/10 for the iOS version.[28] GamesRadar gave the game 9/10, mentioning that the iOS version in particular is "incredible".[26] Sonic the Hedgehog CD hit the number one spot on the "PlayStation Network Top Sellers" list for December 2011.[32] In March 2013, the game was nominated for and won the "Windows Phone Game of the Year" award at the the Pocket Gamer Awards.[30]


  • Some of the achievements for this game bear distinct references:
    • The achievement name "Paradise Found" is a parody of the 17th Century poem, "Paradise Lost", by John Milton. When Sonic achieves a Good Future in any of the zones, he is essentially "founding" a paradise for the future of that zone.
    • The achievement "88 Miles Per Hour" is a reference to the 1985 film Back to the Future, in which the DeLorean time machine needed to go at a speed of 88 miles per hour in order to travel through time.
    • The achievement named "King of the Rings" could be a reference to the song "King of the Ring" from the 1996 album Sonic the Hedgehog by Arcade Music Company.
  • The animated cutscenes are cropped to have a 16:9 appearance on console/PC version. However, on mobile (even 16:9 phones), the cutscenes will appear in their original 4:3 format.
  • There was originally going to be an extra boss that would have only been accessible after the player had collected all of the Time Stones, but it was ultimately scrapped.



  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 Sonic CD Arrives In Time For the Holidays. Sega Blog. Sega (13 Dececmber 2011). Archived from the original on 5 March 2017. Retrieved on 4 January 2022.
  2. Xbox LIVE Marketplace - Sonic CD. Xbox Store (US). Microsoft. Archived from the original on 10 July 2012. Retrieved on 13 February 2022.
  3. Xbox LIVE Marketplace - Sonic CD (French). Xbox Store (FR). Microsoft. Archived from the original on 19 July 2012. Retrieved on 13 February 2022.
  4. Xbox LIVE Marketplace - Sonic CD. Xbox Store (AU). Microsoft. Archived from the original on 11 July 2012. Retrieved on 13 February 2022.
  5. Android (Japanese). Sega (JP). Archived from the original on 5 March 2017. Retrieved on 4 January 2022.
  6. ソニック CD (Japanese). Archived from the original on 23 June 2014. Retrieved on 5 January 2022.
  7. Sonic CD Arrives In Time For the Holidays. Sega Blog. Sega (13 December 2011). Archived from the original on 7 June 2017. Retrieved on 5 January 2022.
  8. Sonic CD. PlayStation Store (AU). Sony. Archived from the original on 4 April 2018. Retrieved on 12 February 2022.
  9. Sonic CD. SteamDB. Archived from the original on 23 December 2017. Retrieved on 3 January 2022.
  10. Sonic CD (Japanese). Windows Phone Marketplace. Archived from the original on 18 December 2012. Retrieved on 27 December 2021.
  11. Sonic CD. Windows Phone Marketplace. Archived from the original on 17 November 2012. Retrieved on 27 December 2021.
  12. 12.0 12.1 Sonic CD Now Available on OUYA. Sega Blog. Sega (1 August 2013). Archived from the original on 5 August 2013. Retrieved on 29 December 2021.
  13. Usher, William (6 January 2015). PlayStation Now Game List: Here's Every PS3 Game You Can Stream. Cinema Blend. Archived from the original on 9 January 2015. Retrieved on 11 February 2022.
  14. Wales, Matt (26 April 2022). Sega delisting standalone versions of Sonic 1, 2, 3, and CD ahead of Sonic Origins' arrival. Eurogamer. Archived from the original on 26 April 2022. Retrieved on 27 April 2022.
  15. SEGA Forever on Twitter. Twitter (26 April 2022). Archived from the original on 26 April 2022. Retrieved on 27 April 2022.
  16. 16.0 16.1 Sonic the Hedgehog CD (iOS) English instruction menu, "A World That Defies Time."
  17. 17.0 17.1 Sonic the Hedgehog CD (iOS) English instruction menu, "Characters."
  18. 18.0 18.1 Sonic the Hedgehog CD (iOS) English instruction menu, "Characters (Cont.)."
  19. Sonic CD Demonstration. YouTube.
  20. 20.0 20.1 Sonic CD. GameRankings. Retrieved on 10 September 2012.
  21. 21.0 21.1 Sonic CD - Xbox 360. Metacritic. Retrieved on 10 April 2015.
  22. 22.0 22.1 Sonic CD - PlayStation 3. Metacritic. Retrieved on 10 April 2015.
  23. 23.0 23.1 Sonic CD - iOS. Metacritic. Retrieved on 10 April 2015.
  24. North, Dale (2011-12-15). Review: Sonic CD. Destructoid. Retrieved on 2011-12-21.
  25. Kemps, Heidi (3 January 2012). Sonic CD Reviews. GameSpot. Retrieved on 23 January 2012.
  26. 26.0 26.1 Sonic CD Review. GamesRadar (16 December 2011). Retrieved on 9 January 2013.
  27. 27.0 27.1 DeVries, Jack (16 December 2011). Sonic CD Review - Xbox 360 Review at IGN. IGN. Retrieved on 21 December 2011.
  28. 28.0 28.1 Sonic CD Review. IGN. Retrieved on 9 January 2013.
  29. Rudden, Dave (19 December 2011). Sonic CD review. Official Xbox Magazine. Retrieved on 21 December 2011.
  30. 30.0 30.1 Pocket Gamer Awards 2013. Pocket Gamer. Archived from the original on 7 March 2013.
  31. 25 Best iPhone and iPad Games of 2011. Metacritic (31 December 2012). Retrieved on 9 January 2013.
  32. PSN Top Sellers: Sonic CD Races to the Top in December 2011 – PlayStation Blog. PlayStation Blog. Retrieved on 9 January 2013.

External links

Sonic the Hedgehog mobile games