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Sonic the Hedgehog 3

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Sonic the Hedgehog 3 is a 2D action platformer for the Sega Mega Drive in the Sonic the Hedgehog series and is a remake of Sonic 3 & Knuckles. It's developed by Metal Chaos Inc. and Sonic Team, while SEGA published the game. This game was released in June 21st, 1995.

Story

At the end of Sonic the Hedgehog 2, the evil Dr. Robotnik had his Death Egg downed from orbit by the heroes, Sonic the Hedgehog and his companion Miles "Tails" Prower. Having not been completely destroyed after all, the Death Egg has crash-landed on the Floating Island, taking it to the ocean below. This island has special properties - not least of which being the eponymous ability to magically float. When Dr. Robotnik detects the presence of a massive Chaos Emerald within the island, he decides to once again seek out the Emeralds so that his fallen Death Egg can regain orbit in space. Turning his crushing defeat into a surprise advantage yet again, he kidnaps animals to convert into Badniks and created a new line of weapons such as an environment-changing device.

On an island some distance away, Tails detects a strong Chaos Emerald reading with his invention, the Jewel Radar. Thinking that it had to do with the sudden tidal wave that occurred after the Death Egg's defeat, he decides to consult with Sonic to investigate. Meanwhile, Sonic woke up from his nap on the beach to find a ring engraved with ancient letters washed ashore, which reminded him of a legend - an ancient civilization once tried to take a prosperous stone for its power, but were wiped out in an instant. It is said that the Gods reshaped their territory as an island isolated in the sky, along with the mighty stone of power. With a renewed sense of adventure, Sonic joined Tails to take the Tornado to the ocean.

They found the landmass previously known as the Floating Island resting on the ocean. Excited, Sonic hops off the Tornado prematurely and uses the power of the Chaos Emeralds he found during his previous adventure to transform into Super Sonic, showing off as he glides across the surface of the water. Unfortunately, he is caught off guard with the spiked glove of an echidna named Knuckles. Knuckles is the guardian of the island who was tricked by Dr. Robotnik into thinking that Sonic and Tails are thieves, so he quickly took Sonic's Emeralds and hid them. Tails soon joined Sonic and they set off to explore and stop the nefarious Dr. Robotnik while evading Knuckles' cunning traps. In the end, Robotnik gets the Death Egg briefly flying again, but is defeated by Sonic and Tails, causing the Death Egg to fall again.

After Dr. Robotnik's defeat at his Launch Base, the revived Death Egg fell back onto the Floating Island and crashed on top of the Lava Reef's volcanic crater. The evil doctor resumes his goal of restoring the Death Egg, this time by stealing the Master Emerald to limitlessly fuel its engines. This all-powerful jewel, upon which the other Chaos Emeralds base their powers, is guarded by Knuckles. Dr. Robotnik was able to fool the echidna into working for him and against Sonic and Tails. Upon landing in Mushroom Hill, Sonic and Tails discovered a Giant Ring that took him to the Master Emerald. Realizing that this is the object of legend that Dr. Robotnik must have set his sights on, he rushes to prevent Robotnik from taking it.

In the underground Hidden Palace, Robotnik takes advantage of the confusion between Sonic, Tails and Knuckles in order to obtain the Master Emerald. Knuckles then realizes that Dr. Robotnik has been tricking him all along, and he is injured while trying to stop Robotnik from stealing the Emerald. Knuckles helps Sonic and Tails to get to Sky Sanctuary, then leaves them to defeat Robotnik and trusts him to return the Master Emerald. Sonic takes on the Death Egg and defeats Robotnik's escape mech to bring back the Master Emerald, making the Floating Island regain its namesake. However, a lone EggRobo takes up the Doctor's mantle.

A while after this event, Knuckles is seen relaxing with the animals in Angel Island. Suddenly, the remaining EggRobo throws a bomb. Knuckles becomes angry at the EggRobo and chases after him, starting Knuckles's storyline in the game. As Knuckles races through the zones, Knuckles accesses new places Sonic could not access. After Knuckles exits Hidden Palace through the teleporter, the EggRobo grabs Knuckles and is faced with Mecha Sonic. Knuckles glides out of the way (as Mecha Sonic destroys EggRobo), and the two fight. After defeat, Mecha Sonic goes to the Master Emerald and uses it to turn into Super Mecha Sonic. Knuckles defeats Mecha Sonic, which makes the platform collapse. However, Sonic arrives with the Tornado, saving Knuckles. Knuckles returns to the Floating Island with the Master Emerald, making it maintain its flight.


Characters

Playable

Name Sprite Description
Sonic the Hedgehog Sonicsonic3 The main character of the game. Sonic runs slightly faster and jumps slightly higher than Knuckles and Tails, but lacks Knuckles' and Tails' special abilities to glide, climb, fly, and swim. Sonic can use the W spin attack and all the special attacks associated with Barriers.
Miles "Tails" Prower Gf Sonic's partner. Tails is slightly slower than Sonic, but he has the ability to fly and swim for short lengths of time. He can't use any of the special Barrier attacks. His ability to fly gives him access to areas that Sonic can't reach and makes for an easier game in general. The majority of his sprites were recycled from Sonic 2, with a notable exception being the flying sprite.
Knuckles the Echidna Sdds Knuckles is slower than Sonic and doesn't jump as high, but he can glide through the air, climb up walls, and punch through barriers Sonic and/or Tails would not be able to spin dash through. Knuckles' story is shorter and comes after Sonic's and Tails', but it is more difficult than Sonic's and Tails'.
Sonic and Tails Fhf As Sonic and Tails, Tails will follow Sonic throughout the entire game. If Tails dies or gets left behind, he will respawn by flying down to Sonic and continue where Sonic is going. A second player could control Tails and make him fly directly over Sonic. He'll latch on and give player 1 a lift. Tails' basic flight control is retained, though the speed of ascent is lowered due to the extra weight.

NPC

Name Sprite Description
Dr. Robotnik Eggyxm4 At the end of Act 2 in any zone, Robotnik is encountered with all sorts of different contraptions attached to his newly designed Eggmobile. As in the first games, eight hits are required to defeat Robotnik's machines.
Mini Bosses Sonic3MiniBosses For the first time when released, two bosses would be confronted in the entire level. In Act 1, a machine of Dr. Robotnik's will be encountered at the end. Unlike the main bosses, a sub-boss would only take 6 hits before exploding into flames.
Knuckles the Echidna Laugh In Sonic's and/or Tails' story, Knuckles adds to the experience as he occasionally shows up to try and hinder Sonic and Tails' progress.

Gameplay

Changes

The game gave Sonic a new look and approached the Sonic-style with a new attitude in mind. Levels are now three times larger than those found in the previous games and contain more secrets and different routes to take. Both Sonic and Tails have new abilities and new shields give Sonic additional powers. The game pays much closer attention to the plot than previous titles in the series, as small "cut-scenes" are played to show the story's progress, and acts beginning exactly where the last act ended. The addition of Knuckles, who was destined to become a recurring character in the series, adds to the experience as he occasionally shows up to try and hinder Sonic and Tails' progress.

Character Abilities

Sonic the Hedgehog

Name Description
Walk Push left or right on the D-pad to initiate Sonic's movement in either direction. As you hold the button down, Sonic gains speed.
Run Begin walking and hold down the button to make Sonic gain speed. After a few seconds, he'll break into a run.
Screech halt While running, quickly press and hold the opposite direction on the D-pad to make Sonic screech to a halt. He'll skid for a short distance, based on how fast he was moving.
Look up While standing still, press up on the D-pad to make Sonic gaze to the heavens. As you hold up, the camera pans upward, giving you a view of Sonic's overhead surroundings.
Crouch While standing still, press down on the D-pad to make Sonic duck. As you hold down, the camera pans downward, giving you a view of the stage beneath where Sonic stands.
Spin While moving, press down on the D-pad to make Sonic curl into a rolling attack. He'll remain in this position until you jump or slow down. The speed of Sonic's movement while in spin form is based on how fast you're moving when you launch it, and also on the terrain Sonic rolls along.
Jump Press A, B, or C at any time to make Sonic leap into the air with a spin attack. The height of the jump is proportional to how long you hold the button down.
Push Certain objects can be pushed by running up against them. Continue holding the D-pad against the offending cube to have Sonic push it along the ground.
Super Spin Dash While crouching, tap any of the jump buttons to have Sonic rev up with a stationary spin. Keep tapping the jump buttons to build up momentum, and let go of the D-pad to dash off with a full speed rolling attack.
W spin attack/force field/insta-shield Jump, then tap any of the action buttons while in midair to initiate a 360° slash that momentarily extends the radius of Sonic's spin attack and makes him immune from damage.

Miles "Tails" Prower

Tails is slightly slower than Sonic, but he has the ability to fly and swim for short lengths of time. He can't use any of the special barrier attacks. His ability to fly gives him access to areas that Sonic can't reach and makes for an easier game in general. The majority of his sprites were recycled from Sonic 2, with a notable exception being the flying sprite.

Name Description
Walk Tails' basic movement. Push left or right on the D-pad to initiate Tails' movement in either direction. As you hold the button down, Tails gains speed.
Run Begin walking and hold down the button to make Tails gain speed. After a few seconds, he'll break into a run.
Screech halt While running, quickly press and hold the opposite direction on the D-pad to make Tails screech to a halt. He'll skid for a short distance, based on how fast he was moving.
Look up While standing still, press up on the D-pad to make Tails gaze to the heavens. As you hold up, the camera pans upward, giving you a view of Tails' overhead surroundings.
Crouch While standing still, press down on the D-pad to make Tails duck. As you hold down, the camera pans downward, giving you a view of the stage beneath where Tails stands.
Spin While moving, press down on the D-pad to make Tails curl into a rolling attack. He'll remain in this position until you jump or slow down. The speed of Tails' movement while in kaiten form is based on how fast you're moving when you launch it, and also on the terrain Tails rolls along.
Jump Press A, B, or C at any time to make Tails leap into the air with a spin attack. The height of the jump is proportional to how long you hold the button down.
Push Certain objects can be pushed by running up against them. Continue holding the D-pad against the offending cube to have Tails push it along the ground.
Super Spin Dash While crouching, tap any of the jump buttons to have Tails rev up with a stationary spin. Keep tapping the jump buttons to build up momentum, and let go of the D-pad to dash off with a full speed rolling attack.
Fly Jump, then press any of the action buttons while in midair to have Tails whirl his two tails together and take to the sky. Continue tapping the action buttons to ascend, or let go to descend. While airborne, Tails can be maneuvered with the D-pad. Damage can be inflicted upon enemies or bosses by flying upwards into them with your deadly whirling tails. After a short while (eight seconds on the game timer), Tails will get tired and fall to the ground.
Swim While underwater, jump and press any of the action buttons to begin swimming. Swimming is basically identical to flying except that you can't damage enemies or lift Sonic.
Lift In a "Sonic & Tails" game, have a second player control Tails and make him fly directly over Sonic. He'll latch on and give player 1 a lift. Tails' basic flight control is retained, though the speed of ascent is lowered due to the extra weight.

Knuckles' abilities

Newcomer Knuckles is slower than Sonic and doesn't jump as high, but he can glide through the air, climb up walls, and punch through barriers Sonic would not be able to spin dash through. Knuckles' story is shorter, but it is more difficult than Sonic's.

Name Description
Walk Knuckles' basic movement. Push left or right on the D-pad to initiate Knuckles' movement in either direction. As you hold the button down, Knuckles gains speed.
Run Begin walking and hold down the button to make Knuckles gain speed. After a few seconds, he'll break into a run.
Screech halt While running, quickly press and hold the opposite direction on the D-pad to make Knuckles screech to a halt. He'll skid for a short distance, based on how fast he was moving.
Look up While standing still, press up on the D-pad to make Knuckles gaze to the heavens. As you hold up, the camera pans upward, giving you a view of Knuckles' overhead surroundings.
Crouch While standing still, press down on the D-pad to make Knuckles duck. As you hold down, the camera pans downward, giving you a view of the stage beneath where Knuckles stands.
Spin While moving, press down on the D-pad to make Knuckles curl into a rolling attack. He'll remain in this position until you jump or slow down by moving in the opposite direction. The speed of Knuckles's movement while in spin form is based on how fast you're moving when you launch it, and also on the terrain Knuckles rolls along.
Jump Press A, B, or C at any time to make Knuckles leap into the air with a spin attack. The height of the jump is proportional to how long you hold the button down.
Push Certain objects can be pushed by running up against them. Continue holding the D-pad against the offending cube to have Knuckles push it along the ground.
Super Spin Dash While crouching, tap any of the jump buttons to have Knuckles rev up with a stationary spin. Keep tapping the jump buttons to build up momentum, and let go of the D-pad to dash off with a full speed rolling attack.
Glide Jump and press any of the action buttons while in midair to have Knuckles glide slowly to the earth, extending the horizontal distance he would cover with a normal jump. The glide can also be used as an attack to destroy enemies in midair.
Climb Glide into a wall to have Knuckles latch onto it. Press up or down on the D-pad to scale the surface, and jump to let go.

Zones

  1. Angel Island Zone: A tranquil jungle that is set ablaze by Dr. Robotnik after Sonic and Tails arrive. The mini-boss is one of the hovering flame drones that burned the jungle. Sonic and/or Tails faces off against Dr. Robotnik's own flame-wielding vehicle at a waterfall.
  2. Hydrocity Zone: The inner workings of a complex hydroelectric dam. After tangling with a mini-boss that can spin Sonic and Tails in a whirlpool, Dr. Robotnik tries to stop them with his own whirlpool inducer as well as depth charges.
  3. Marble Garden Zone: The marble ruins of an ancient civilization. The mini-boss uses a pair of drills to attack Sonic and Tails, both directly and by drilling into the rock above and raining debris on their heads (reminiscent of Dr. Robotnik's own vehicle in the Mystic Cave Zone of Sonic 2). Dr. Robotnik attempts to crush the pair under the collapsing ruins, and when Tails airlifts Sonic out of danger, charges at them directly with his drill. This is the only zone without any water to drown Sonic or Tails, though tar pits can still drag the heroes down and kill them.
  4. Carnival Night Zone: Tails drops Sonic into a playful carnival filled with balloons, pinball bumpers, and cannons to launch from, although unlike Casino Night Zone in Sonic 2 there are no slot machines. After Sonic and Tails survive the mini-boss on a slowly eroding platform, they face Dr. Robotnik, who this time drops a large sphere and uses it to create an electric storm that draws the pair towards its discharge. Halfway through Act 2, Sonic must push a rotating cylinder down through a slot low enough for him to escape through. This is completed by pressing up and down on the D-pad, essentially frustrating many players who didn't figure out the tricks at first. Carnival Night Zone is the longest of all zones available in Sonic the Hedgehog 3.
  5. Flying Battery Zone: The player is propelled to this flying fortress with electrified robots. The mini-boss looks like the Flicky-capsule and must be tricked into hitting itself. Robotnik is fought twice: first, he traps the player in an arena with a moving laser blaster on the ceiling, very similar to the Wing Fortress boss. Then, it goes to an exterior platform which Robotnik latches onto from below and crawls along, spouting flame from the top of the pod every time the character attempts to jump over, and swinging upwards to be hit.
  6. IceCap Zone: Sonic is shot from a cannon and lands on a snowboard in the snowy mountains. The level contains vents that shoot out cold bursts that freeze and harm Sonic. At the end of Act 1, a snow machine that spins snow at Sonic or Tails tries to crush them. Robotnik attacks in Act 2 in a machine that that has a spiked platform drop down and fires the freezing bursts in a pattern at Sonic.
  7. Launch Base Zone: Dr. Robotnik's site that houses the stricken Death Egg, with spinning elevators for facilitation of travel and alarms to keep out intruders. The mini-boss uses two flailing arms. Dr. Robotnik uses three different weapons to stop Sonic and Tails: first, a static projectile launcher at the foot of the Death Egg. When that fails, Robotnik flees to the Death Egg and Sonic chases after, leaving Tails behind. After boarding, Dr. Robotnik employs a rocket armed with lasers to fight Sonic, and then finally resorts to a large pair off arms to grab Sonic in a ball and slam him into the floor.
  8. Mushroom Hill Zone: A lush forest, with pump elevators, sticky vines, and filled with mushrooms that also serve as trampolines or parachutes. The miniboss is a woodcutter robot, and for the fight with Robotnik, the player must avoid the spiked bars and cannon shots while hitting the satellite-enhanced Egg Mobile.
  9. Sandopolis Zone: The heroes fall in this desert zone, which houses a haunted pyramid which the character enters after beating the Guardian mini-boss. The boss, Egg Golem, must be hit in the face so Robotnik is exposed.
  10. Lava Reef Zone: The interior of a volcano, on which the Death Egg had crash-landed. The miniboss consists of mechanical hands that hit the player and orbs that shoot fireballs. Knuckles doesn't face a boss, but Sonic faces Robotnik in an invincible machine, which is only harmed by the landmines it drops.

The next two zones each have just one act, and have their own special bosses, as detailed below. Technically, Death Egg Zone has three acts, but there is no screen to say that Act 2 has been cleared.

  1. Hidden Palace Zone: The old Echidna temple. Knuckles just traverses the zone. Sonic and/or Tails however, has to fight the guardian - Knuckles. After he is defeated, Robotnik steals the Master Emerald and causes Knuckles to help the heroes instead.
  2. Sky Sanctuary Zone: A secret passage leads to these crumbly aerial ruins. Knuckles just faces his final boss, Mecha Sonic, which uses the Master Emerald to go Super. Sonic and/or Tails has to climb the zone facing Mecha Sonic three times - one in a flail-swinging Egg Mobile, another in a "Flying Eggman", and once on foot.
  3. Death Egg Zone: Robotnik's space station, with electric traps, a vacuum chamber and sections with altered gravity. Two minibosses - Red Eye, a vulnerable laser shooting eye surrounded by spiked orbs, and Death Ball, which is only hit when the rotating shield bumpers are away - before facing a Robotnik-shaped mecha, Kyodai Eggman Robo.
  4. Doomsday Zone: Only accessible as Super Sonic, this zone has Sonic chasing Robotnik through space, avoiding meteors and missiles, and trying not to get his rings depleted.


Bonus Stage

As in previous Sonic games, Star Posts are scattered throughout each act to save the player's progress. Furthermore, if Sonic has collected at least 50 rings and he hits a check point, a bright halo of stars will float above it, which Sonic can then jump through to access the bonus stage. The bonus stage is a large gumball machine in which Sonic constantly falls down. Spring bumpers on the side of the walls make sure he stays in the air, but whenever he hits one it disappears. Each time he passes the slot of the gumball machine it releases a gumball with a bonus item in it which Sonic can then grab. Bonuses include shields, rings and lives. Additionally, black balls bump Sonic down while transparent balls contain nothing. The stage ends when Sonic falls to the bottom of the stage off screen.

Special Stages

Special Stages are entered by jumping through Warp Rings hidden in the scenery, and multiple of these large, golden rings can be found in each act. In addition, the player is not required to collect any amount of rings to enter the stage.

The stages themselves are 3 dimensional and spherical in lay-out. Sonic moves across the surface of a giant, checkered orb and has to hit a set amount blue spheres while dodging bumpers and red spheres. Sometimes blue spheres are found in a square formation. If Sonic checks all blue spheres around the sides of a square, the field turns into rings. Collecting 50 rings gains a continue, and collecting all possible rings in the stage gains a "Perfect" bonus of 50,000 points (equal to an extra life).

Sonic is rewarded with a Chaos Emerald when he collects all blue spheres in the stage. Should he touch any of the red spheres, however, the stage ends and he is transported back to the zone.

Enemies

See here.

Gallery

Screenshots

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