Last week at GDC, Sega announced that the original Sonic the Hedgehog [$2.99] port on iOS would be getting a special remastered version, featuring Retina Display graphics, widescreen support, and additional cool features. The best part? It was later confirmed on the Sonic Retro forums that Christian Whitehead, the master behind the brilliant Sonic CD [$2.99] conversion on iOS, would be tag-teaming the project with fellow "hobbyist programmer" and Sonic fan Stealth. So basically like a dream team of Sonic porting mastery.

The remastered Sonic the Hedgehog will use the same Retro Engine that Whitehead developed when he originally ported Sonic CD to iPhone as a fan project back in 2009, a project that two years later Sega officially partnered with Whitehead to bring to iOS and other platforms. (Good job, Sega.) With the Retro Engine, we'll be getting a Sonic 1 with all the bells and whistles of Sonic CD on iOS, including 60fps, tight virtual controls, a Time Attack mode, and more.

As a big Sonic fan and an even bigger fan of the quality of Christian Whitehead's Sonic CD remaster, the prospect of the original game getting that same treatment is really exciting. Even crazier is that Sega is releasing this remastered version as a free update to the existing iOS game. I've probably bought the first Sonic a dozen times over the years, so an update sounds like a nice gift to the fans. Not just that, but Whitehead states that Sega has commissioned them to do a similar remastered version of Sonic 2. Sega: keep doing things like this, please.

The remastered Sonic the Hedgehog is set for release this spring as an update to the currently available version of the game. Oh and not to sound greedy, but while you're at it Sega, let's get some widescreen love for Sonic CD and a Retro Engine version of Sonic 3 & Knuckles, mmmkay?

[Sonic Retro]

  • MidianGTX

    I'm really lazy, so can someone else please work out if "widescreen" means they've just cropped the top and bottom of the image? Thanks!

    • http://youtube.com/peter Peter Coffin

      No, with the Retro Engine, the viewport is scalable to the programmers. It's true, uncropped widescreen.

  • Ahiru Nakamura

    nice!! I loved the fact that Sega actually partnered with Whitehead and wasn't an a$$ about copyright and whatnot... and to @MidianGTX:disqus it looks like a wider view instead of a cropped screen (compare these http://media.tumblr.com/tumblr_lyurk9XqX71qkyx0i.jpg and http://cdn.toucharcade.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/04/sr.png)

  • HeroComa

    For the love of God just update Sonic CD for iPhone 5 optimization it's frustrating mistouching the movement buttons T^T

  • jindofox

    This is awesome news. The Sonic CD "port" was better than the original game ever was. The widescreen version is new, not a cropped screen, and it works wonderfully.

    • http://youtube.com/peter Peter Coffin

      This Sonic 1 port will be literally thousands of times better than the original due to the ability to play some zones - particularly Labyrinth Zone - without absolutely crippling slowdown.

  • http://twitter.com/klouud Timothy Polumbo

    The more I game - specifically on iOS - the more I realize that its all about frame rate. Take Sonic 4 Ep2 for instance - great game mechanics, great graphics, smooth as butter, but the frame rate makes the experience jarring, out of control, and just weird. If it is updated to support 60fps then it would be an amazing game - but it is held back quite a bit because its only in 30 or 40 fps.

  • ios gamer365

    As a true sonic fan I am unbelievably excited I hope sonic 3 & knuckles comes thru!!!

    • http://twitter.com/klouud Timothy Polumbo

      Sonic and Knuckles is my favorite sonic game of all time. I'd really like a port of the Sonic games for DS, they were solid additions to the Sonic franchise.

      • Sammy Thomas

        They already did that... it's called Sonic Classic Collection! Buy it!

  • garret44

    Sounds cool, hats off to these guys 4 doing something sega won't take time to do. Hopefully sonic cd, sonic 2 and sonic 4 will get the same treatment

    • http://twitter.com/klouud Timothy Polumbo

      Sonic 4 Ep2 is still broken!! Metal Sonic level 1 crashes at first check point!! ermahgerd!!

  • gryphonofmight

    I wouldn't mind seeing this done for other sega games like streets of rage and golden axe on the appstore.

  • Sammy Thomas

    Sonic 3 & Knuckles remastered for iOS and Android in 2014 anyone? Sonic 3 & Knuckles is celebrating its 20th anniversary next year, so why not?

  • Thawkk

    This is great news, I was hoping Sega would keep Whitehead around after the awesome job he did with Sonic CD.

  • oldschool gamer

    I remember playing this on my sega then it broke

  • http://profiles.google.com/ahainen Andrew Hainen

    Sonic 3 & Knuckles. Sonic 3 & Knuckles. Sonic 3 & Knuckles. Sonic 3 & Knuckles. Sonic 3 & Knuckles. Why the hell has it not happened already???

    • Decoy_Octopus

      Agreed, I'd much rather see an HD remake of Sonic 3 & Knuckles

  • Emanuel Vargas

    By widescreen, they mean iPhone 5 support right? I've been waiting for that for months. Please Sega?

  • http://www.facebook.com/BrentJoC Brent Joseph Cornils

    Sonic CD wads already made in widescreen by Whitehead.

  • Kane

    Amazing port! SEGA & Christian, if you're reading this.. Please give Streets of Rage 1,2,3 the same treatment! Please :)