Glossary of Key Terms & Faq

Glossary of Key Terms


A set of texts that are regarded as being authentic. Many different development teams have created Sonic games and some of their titles may ignore the events and universes of other games. Hence, such games are 'not canon' as they contradict the events of previous stories.

The formal introduction of a character

In a story the characters will either know each other or have never met each other. The formal introduction of a character shows how the other characters first meet or learn of the new character.

Depicted in the game as an established character

In the game, the other characters know who the specified character is (i.e. (most of) the other characters have previously met the specified character). All stories that depict the specified character as an established character come after the story that provides the formal introduction of the character.


What does "Status of Knowledge" mean?

Sonic the Hedgehog is mainly a Japanese-created series and most of the original stories were drastically altered when released in the West. Not all of the original Japanese stories have been translated into English yet, preventing Western fans from fully understanding the stories of the series. The "Status of Knowledge" bar shows how much of the original story has been translated.

Key to Status of Knowledge information:
Checked - The sources has been checked, but no significant information was found.
Translated(US) - The information provided in the Western manuals was not significantly different from the Japanese original.
Not Obtained - The specified source has not yet been obtained

Note that information relating to stages, Zones etc of each game, has not been translated, so even if we have translations of the story, character profiles and strategy guide for a particular game, we may still not know everything there is to know.

Why use the release dates of games to determine their placement in the timeline?

When creating a new game, developers usually take into account the events and characters that were introduced in previously released games. This will cause the new game to be placed after the events of the already released games.

There are two instances where this may not hold true. The first is when the development process of a new game is very lengthy, causing other games to be released before the new game is completed. For example, work on Sega Sonic Arcade started at the same time as Sonic 2 (preventing the game from taking into account the events of Sonic 2), but the game wasn't released until after the launch of the Mega Drive sequel. The second instance is when a development team wishes to make a prequel (as was the case with Tails' Adventures).

What's the point of creating a Sonic Canon and theorising their placement in a time line, do the developers even care about the order of the games in the story line?

Sonic Team do give some importance to order, as new games frequently refer to the events of old ones. Sonic Battle is a good example of this - it ended up being released before Sonic Heroes, but does make an effort to show that it takes place after Heroes.

Isn't a Sonic Canon going to be based on speculation?

Until Sonic Team release an official time line of canon games, theories about their order will always be based on speculation. However, by drawing on facts and unbiased observations, we can ensure that our theories are educated.

Some of the Sonic games are of a poor quality - why include them in the Canon?

A canon isn't a list of the best Sonic games or the best Sonic stories, as the term 'best' is very subjective.

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