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A number of previous cut stages from Sonic the Hedgehog 2 have been partially shared online.
The Video Game History Foundation (VGHF) has shared some previously unseen content from zones that were cut to ensure the game would be completed in time.
The first of these stages, Cyber City Zone (also known at one point as Genocide City Zone), has been partially reconstructed after the VGHF scanned a number of design documents from the collection of Sonic 2 artist Tom Payne, including sprite art and colour palette information.
The VGHF also had access to Sonic 2 game designer Hirokazu Yasuhara’s map for the stage, as well as sketches of his individually designed ‘chunks’ for the stage (the idea is that the chunks would be arranged on the map, like a jigsaw, to form the basic level structure).
By combining Yasuhara’s map with the new content provided by Payne’s documents, the VGHF was able to create a partial reconstruction of what a completed Cyber City Zone would have looked like.
The footage can be seen at 14 minutes in the VGHF’s new video about the cut content, which can be seen below:
The VGHF also shared another unseen stage from artist Brenda Cook, who had explained in previous interviews that she had worked on three zones that were cut from the game – a tree-based stage called Wood Zone, a desert stage called Sand Shower Zone and a winter stage.
While Wood Zone and Sand Shower Zone had already been seen before in early screenshots and leaked prototype builds of the game, the winter stage had never been seen, until the VHGF acquired Cook’s VHS portfolion, which showed off some of her work.
As well as some animated sprites from other cancelled games, Cook’s portfolio shows an animated version of Sand Shower Zone and the first ever look at the winter stage, all of which can be seen from 17:10 in the above video.
The Video Game History Foundation has shared the Sonic 2 content as part of its annual Winter Fundraiser donation drive, where it asks those interested in the preservation of video games to donate to keep the Foundation’s work going.
During the Winter Fundraiser period, a selection of sponsors will double any donations made, enabling the VGHF to earn more funds.