#retro is the official IRC channel for Sonic Retro (formerly Simon Wai's Sonic 2 Beta/The Sonic 2 Beta Page). Its current home is irc.badnik.net a.k.a. BadnikNET, the dedicated community IRC server run by Sonic Retro's owner, Scarred Sun. The channel's original incarnation, #sws2b on AfterNET, was registered in mid-2005.
At first, the forum's Tech Members were automatically given op status within the channel, a power structure that often resulted in more ops than 'ordinary' members. It also rendered op powers essentially meaningless, since a majority of the regular users had them. This structure was abandoned in 2006, and the channel currently has four or five ops and a couple of half-ops. Currently, Tech Members, Oldbies and Wiki Sysops are given voice.
#retro used to have a far more informal nature than the Sonic Retro forums, almost to the point of having a completely different personality: frequent meme usage, CAPS ABUSE, non-sequitur conversations, and so on. Nowadays the channel has changed personality – rules are stricter and enforced a lot more, with a consequent increase of kicks and bans; with the addition of some filters, CAPS ABUSE is no longer possible; the flood limit has been increased, to a new threshold of 5 lines in 2 seconds; and so on.
Those banned or PAed on the Sonic Retro Message Board can still join #retro freely.
The channel was originally registered to voice on the AfterNET IRC Network in early May 2005, under the name #sws2b for Simon Wai's Sonic 2 Beta. It was actually an offshoot of #randomsonicnet on the same network, and the first regular users were regulars in #rsn; however, #sws2b quickly grew much larger than the (still-inactive) #rsn. AfterNET's open-proxy blacklist scans caused too much trouble for the channel, and in April 2006, voice decided to move it to CulTNET, the server for Sonic CulT. Sazpaimon set up a special sub-server for #sws2b that lacked fsay capabilities.
On June 12, 2006, the channel moved to the Tetraq IRC server. In September 2006, it was given official status as part of SWS2b and was moved back to the Sonic CulT server. December 2006 saw the channel move to its own server at s2beta.com in an apparent attempt to stop rampant IRCop abuse.
In September 2007, the channel was renamed to #retro to reflect The Sonic 2 Beta Page becoming Sonic Retro. #retro is hosted on BadnikNET, Retro Administrator/owner Scarred Sun's dedicated IRC network for various “tech, pop culture and video game-related sites”.