Living more than 5000 miles away, it’s hard for me to imagine the tragedy that struck Japan this past week. A devastating earthquake rocked the country from top to bottom, followed by a tsunami that reached practically every Pacific Ocean coastline. Many different organizations have set up channels to offer relief to Japan, and even in our tiny iOS corner of the world two Japan-based developers are doing their part as well.

Sega has dropped the price of every Sonic the Hedgehog game from now until March 20th, with 100% of the proceeds going to the Red Cross Disaster Relief in Japan. 3 of these 4 Sonic titles are emulated Genesis games, with Sonic Spinball being the one that works the best with virtual controls. Sonic 1 and Sonic 2 don’t fare as well, as they require the precision of physical controls, but honestly they work good enough to give you a quick nostalgia fix if you were a fan of the original titles. Sonic 4, on the other hand, is a brand new Sonic game which has been tailored for the touch screen. It’s a bit short overall, but we really liked Sonic 4 a lot in our review.


Capcom has also lowered the price of one of their flagship titles, Street Fighter IV. From now until March 22nd Street Fighter IV for iPhone will be just 99¢ with all sales going to charity. This version of Street Fighter impressed everybody when it released a year ago with how well it translated to the touch screen for a game that has traditionally relied on physical button controls. Our original glowing review doesn’t even tell the whole story, as the game has been updated many times since then adding new characters, modes, and functionality. It’s practically twice the game it originally was, and if you’re even remotely a Street Fighter fan, this needs to be in your collection.

It’s not always easy to offer support to tragedies like this, especially when many iOS gamers are too young to have a reasonable means of donating to a relief fund. This special promotion gives an easy way to do a small part towards helping, even if all you have is a spare few dollars of iTunes credit to spend. In fact, last month Street Fighter IV dropped to 99¢ for the first time ever and claimed the #1 spot in the App Store charts, so there is definitely potential to rack up a good amount of donation money for Japan. And it’s not such a bad deal for yourself, either, as all of these games are worth owning anyway. If you happen to already have them for yourself, now would also be a great time to gift them to family or friends with iOS devices.

  • http://twitter.com/AhiruDuck Ahiru Nakamura

    cool stuff for those who don't have these... and for a good cause too...

    • Generalcf

      wait so they couldnt keep the games at the regular price to give even more proceeds to the cause? ha wow. cheap fucks.

      • Paco

        What are you talking about, jackasss... if they have kept the same price very few people would've bought the games. D'oh.

  • Anonymous

    Thanks. Informing people right now!

  • Anonymous

    Does it include the Apple's cut?
    I'm sure not! Jobs loves his dollars..

    • http://www.traplightgames.com Hiipi

      That's a fair question... Otherwise a great idea, but that little detail is bugging me.

      I would be ready to buy games worth 20 bucks if I knew it all went to charity - but if Apple takes their cut it is very questionable. Profiting with charity campaigns sounds dirty to me.

      • Anonymous

        Apple has the capability to set aside money for charity, as they are doing with their Red Cross donations through iTunes. However, unless Sega has worked closely with Apple to set this up, I'd imagine these will be pulled from the Store before long. It is against the rules to mention charity drives in your app descriptions for the exact reason you brought up - it would be weird to take a cut from the top, but unless special provisions are made, that's going to happen automatically.

      • Anonymous

        Seriously? There's been dozens of charity drives from apps.

      • Anonymous

        On second consideration, most of Apple's rules seem to be about apps themselves allowing for donations, particularly through IAP. While I could have sworn they've frowned on talking about donations in descriptions in the past, I might be wrong. It's possible that since Sega specifies "100% of Sega's proceeds", that it's okay.

  • Deacon

    Was going to donate but just ive seen one guy with two boats in his driveway.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Andrzej-Raczynski/668591493 Andrzej Raczynski

    maybe some ipad games will get in on the donation thing. can't say i've ever cared for sonic or street fighter.

  • INSMisaHyprocrite

    It's so high tech in Japan.........The beaches come to them.

    • http://twitter.com/AhiruDuck Ahiru Nakamura

      it's so full of sh*t in your head....... poop comes out of your mouth.

    • Thebeast

      Japan and Howard stern have something in common..........they both are radioactive.

  • http://www.mooedia.co.uk Tom - mooedia

    Its awful what has happened. I'm going to gift app a few mates..and now its time for Sonic 4 me thinks as already have Streetfighter 4. (most excellent it is to!)

  • Art Vandelay

    Japan was seriously wounded, but the soul still burns.

  • Anonymous

    This is great and if I didn't have SFIV already I'd buy it now for sure. It's a great game. I want to buy one of the sonic games because of this, but I haven't been able to pull the trigger yet. I didn't like Sonic 4 much on the Wii, so I don't really want that on the iPhone, and while I'd love to have a good version of Sonic 1, it sounds like it's pretty half-assed, without even a save state, which would make the game pretty unplayable IMHO. So now I don't know what to do. I'll definitely get one of them, but I'll think about it more before picking one.

    • http://www.mooedia.co.uk Tom - mooedia

      I already have Sonic 1 which I quite enjoy. Cannot comment on Sonic 2 as dont have that (yet!)

      Controls can be a bit fiddly on Sonic 1 but I get along ok with it.

      • Anonymous

        Ok, I just bought Sonic 1. If I don't care for, at least I know the proceeds are going to a good cause.

      • Anonymous

        I haven't played it much yet, but so far it plays a lot better then I was expecting. No major problems with the controls so far. Glad I bought it. I might pick up Sonic 2 as well.

  • YoureAMessy

    It's a shame I already bought SF4. :(

  • Paco

    Bought Sonic 2 and Street Fighter 4 (although I don't know if I will ever play the last one) just to help, thanks TA!

  • GodSon

    Too bad I own most of these titles, but I've been holding off on Sonic 4 for the longest. I will be picking it up today GLADLY to support the cause.

  • Jwl

    I have tried downloading SFIV for the last hour now, and every times it says that the file is corrupted and I need to try again, when it has downloaded about 1/3. Do anyone else experience this?

  • Anonymous

    I don't want either game, but I downloaded them just because I support developers who want to help.

  • Bflatt

    anyone have any comments on Sonic Spinball?

  • Patrickd3

    http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/floofattack/id421788397?mt=8

    http://d3gamestudio.com/floof-attack-suport-japan/

    50% of all money raised at the sale of Floofattack will be donated for the Red Cross to continue humanitarian work in Japan.

    Why 50%

    Our agreement with Apple iTunes guarantees them 30% of the sales. we will be contacting apple to see what can be done at this time.

    After all bank charges and taxes, we will donate 50% of this Money.

    We hope everyone will cooperate with this campaign!

    Since we are already very grateful to all the support that you all have given to our game!

    Thank you so much!

    Patrick Haraguti

  • Sf

    Sweet thanks for sharing; I'm a huge sonic-fan and didn't know about this. I've purchased some new, fun games and I feel excellent because I've helped Japan.