New Sonic Adventures was a series of sprite comics I made between 2002 and 2006 and published online using Tripod and Angelfire sites. As a life-long fan of the Sonic the Hedgehog franchise, I had always yearned to tell my own Sonic stories and to present my own version of events surrounding Sonic and his ever-growing cast of characters. As a child, this was realised through numerous crude-to-mediocre drawings and comics but, after seeing the wide variety of sprite comics out there, I eventually turned to using sprites to realise my vision.
Making a sprite comic isn’t easy, and I learned more tricks and became better at it with each comic I made. My earliest attempts were hampered by my limited knowledge of picture software and limited tools. As a result, I would type up scripts in Word and then use Paint to put everything together.
My first comic was restricted by the fact that I was new to the process, young, and stupid (I didn’t even know about the transparency function in Paint, meaning that I had to fill in the blank white spaces around every sprite!)
However, as I progressed, the process became faster and easier and I ended up using Word tools and Jasc Paint Shop Pro to create more complex effects and flourishes to subsequent entries. I also started to piece together my own backgrounds and sprite art; as new Sonic characters were being introduced faster than the sprite community was willing to create new sheets of sprites, I would be forced to create sprite characters from very limited work available in order to progress my narrative.
What began as quite a simple concept that sought to mash together all aspects of Sonic’s complex different interpretations soon spiralled out of control into an entirely different interpretation of the character, one that became far removed from the source material despite my initial aims to be more true to it than other adaptations. My comics became influenced by anime (particularly Dragonball Z and the first Pokémon movie), movies (the Matrix trilogy and Star Wars saga, for instance), and other sources to eventually take on a life all of its own.
Eventually, as time wore on and my priorities turned elsewhere, I drew my series to a close with one final comic. However, I had ideas mapped out for a whole series of spin-offs and continuations and even completed two whole parts and a sizeable third of a whole new entry in the series, including a website and commentary, but never finished the project or made it available online as I focused on my academic achievements.
Still, I was able to finish the series with a conclusion and even revisited my first two entries and applied some of my more advanced techniques to make them more professional and presentable and to address some continuity issues in those early entries. Although I don’t promote the series at all any more, I’d still like to use this page to showcase what was once a big project in my life.
The first entry in the series, Battle for the Chaos Emeralds, provides a unique origin for Doctor Ivo “Eggman” Robotnik and, drawing from Sonic the Hedgehog, Sonic the Hedgehog 2, Sonic the Hedgehog 3, and Sonic & Knuckles, tells the first adventure of Sonic and Tails as they meet Knuckles for the first time and team up to stop Robotnik from turning his Death Egg against their home.
Some time later, I produced a revamp of this comic with the Remastered Emerald Edition, in which I applied my now-well-crafted sprite comic techniques and made the comic far more presentable.
This was followed by the four-part Time Stone Saga, which was inspired by Sonic the Hedgehog CD, Knuckles’ Chaotix, Sonic 3D: Flickie’s Island, Sonic the Hedgehog: Triple Trouble, Sonic Advance, and Sonic Advance 2. This comic saw me switch to using the Advance sprites for the main characters, which were much easier to edit and allowed for far more emotions and actions, and utilise a sequential narrative format that saw Sonic, Tails, Knuckles, and their friends split up into four separate quests to retrieve the legendary Time Stones before Robotnik can use their power for evil.
Again, I later revamped all four parts with the Remastered Time Stone Edition, which, again, corrected many of my earlier errors and also provided additional material.
The third entry, Perfect Chaos, was where my series really started evolving into its own entity as I mashed together the narratives of Sonic Adventure and Sonic Adventure 2 to introduce Shadow to the series. Faced with the team-up between Robotnik, Metal Sonic, and Shadow, Sonic and his friends must attempt to stop them from resurrecting an ancient evil, Chaos, and destroying the world.
I then returned to the sequential format with the four-part Chaos Ring Saga, which is where the Dragonball Z influences really start taking prominence. After learning of the ancient Chaos Rings, Robotnik seeks to gather them and regain control over the planet with their power. Sonic, Tails, and Knuckles race to find them first and awaken their latent Chaos Emerald powers before running a deadly gauntlet of Robotnik’s most fearsome creations.
The five-part Sonic Heroes saga sought to return the series to a more simplistic, less-convoluted narrative that was closer to the videogame source material. In this loose adaptation of the titular videogame, Team Sonic, Team Rose, Team Chaotix, and Team dark are each lured into a trap by Robotnik that sees them come face-to-face with the deranged robotic menace, Metal Sonic.
Sonic Battle: Metal Ragnorak continues and ultimately concludes this narrative; inspired by Sonic Battle and Sonic Advance 3, with strong influences of the Matrix trilogy, Sonic is forced into a final confrontation with his metallic doppelgänger that sees an army of Metal Sonics lay siege to his home and the fate of the planet placed in an intense confrontation between Super Metal Sonic and Super Sonic.
Finally, the series draws to a close with Sonic: Liberty where, in true Return of the Jedi fashion, Eggman has rebuilt his Death Egg satellite and is preparing to transform the entire planet into a mechanical monstrosity. Faced with this world-ending threat, Sonic, Tails, and Knuckles must align with some unlikely allies to realise their destiny and end Robotnik’s threat once and for all.
But it doesn’t end there! A series of spin-offs expand the series beyond the main entries and bring life to this unique Sonic continuity:
After being introduced in Perfect Chaos, the backstory and continued adventures of Shadow are explored in the Tales of Shadow series: Chaos Control explores how Shadow first came to be in ancient times and his first confrontation with the unstoppable Chaos; Marooned details how Shadow has been operating between the events of Battle for the Chaos Emeralds and the Time Stone Saga to orchestrate some key events in the series; The Return of Chaos details the discovery and devastating first appearance of the mysterious Gizoid, Emerl, and sees the immortal Shadow team up with his biomechanical clone to tackle the renewed threat of Chaos and its disastrous confrontation with Emerl; finally, Residual Chaos sees Shadow battle the merciless Wechidna and tells the final tragic story in Shadow’s life.
Probably the comic I’m least proud of, Chaotix: Roots explores the origins and first meetings of the Chaotix Detective Agency as Vector, Espio, Mighty, and Charmy team-up with Ray to escape the clutches of a renegade bounty hunter.
Finally, Sonic Battle: I, Metal tells the story of the series up to the point of Sonic Battle: Metal Ragnorak entirely from the perspective of Metal Sonic, allowing for not only a unique take on the events that have transpired but also an in-depth look into exactly how Metal Sonic gained sentience and formulated a complex plan to finally gain the power needed to face his biological counterpart equally.
If you’d like to learn more about sprite comics, or even create your own, try visiting websites like the Spriter’s Resource or the Shyguy Kingdom. I’m not sure how active the community is any more; back when I first started, it was really vocal, busy, and rampant but progress on new sprites and sprite projects seemed to die out over time. However, the resources are out there if you look hard enough.