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Sonic the Hedgehog co-creator reveals original concept art for 'Twin Stars'

Sonic the Hedgehog started off as a much different game, as revealed in new concept work.

Naoto Ohshima

The Sonic the Hedgehog franchise transcends gaming as one of the most recognizable properties in entertainment. With its massive status, it’s hard to imagine that the franchise originally began as something quite different. Well, that’s exactly the case, as series co-creator Naoto Ohshima has shared some early concept art for the game. With the new art, he shares that originally, the series wasn’t going to be Sonic the Hedgehog at all.

Naoto Oshima took to his personal Twitter account this past weekend to share some old concept art that he created during the early development days of Sonic the Hedgehog. In the art, we see sketches of Sonic, a human woman, a couple of children, and various creatures. Before the game was even given that iconic title, it would be called Twin Stars. Oshima provides additional details on what the original plan for the game was.

Original concept art for Twin Stars

Source: Naoto Ohshima

“I made a draft of the game. An action game about twin brothers who protect the dream world from Nightmare World's boss ‘Thirteen’. It evolved into Sonic.” This game would have been called Twin Stars. From the concept art, it looks like Sonic wouldn’t have even been the main character of the game, with the spotlight instead being on the two brothers.

Although the game changed quite a lot by the time it became Sonic the Hedgehog, it’s interesting how many pieces of the concept art became staples of the franchise. In a reply to the tweet, an ex-Sega lead shared some additional concept arts from Twin Stars’ original pitch. This included one of the brothers running through a circular loop, as Sonic does in Green Hill Zone Act 1, and many times after.

The team at Sega certainly made the right call in making Sonic The Hedgehog the game it became, as evidenced by its ongoing success throughout the years. Its last outing, Sonic Frontiers, was a great return to form for the 3D series of games according to our Shacknews review.

News Editor

Donovan is a young journalist from Maryland, who likes to game. His oldest gaming memory is playing Pajama Sam on his mom's desktop during weekends. Pokémon Emerald, Halo 2, and the original Star Wars Battlefront 2 were some of the most influential titles in awakening his love for video games. After interning for Shacknews throughout college, Donovan graduated from Bowie State University in 2020 with a major in broadcast journalism and joined the team full-time. He is a huge Scream nerd and film fanatic that will talk with you about movies and games all day. You can follow him on twitter @Donimals_

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