Sonic the Fighters

From Sonic Retro


Sonic the Fighters title.png
Sonic the Fighters
Publisher: Sega
Distributor: Deith Leisure (UK)[1]
System(s): Sega Model 2B CRX, PlayStation Network, Xbox Live Arcade, PlayStation Now
Genre: Fighting
Release Date RRP Code
1996-05 ¥? ?
1996-07 $? ?
1996-08 €? ?
Microsoft Xbox 360
2012-11-28[2] $400[2] ?
Microsoft Xbox 360
2012-11-28[2] €400[2] ?
Sony PlayStation 3
2012-11-28[3] ¥762 (800)[3] NPJB-00250
Sony PlayStation 3
2012-11-27[4][5] $4.99[4][5] NPUB-30927
Sony PlayStation 3
2012-12-05[4][6] €4.49[4][6] NPEB-01162
Sony PlayStation 3
2012-12-05[4][7] £3.69[4][7] NPEB-01162
Sony PlayStation 3
2012-12-05[8] $6.75[8] NPEB-01162
Sony PlayStation 3
2012-12-18[9] ₩6,000[9] NPHB-00515
Sony PlayStation 3
2012-12-18[10] NT$160[10] NPHB-00515
PlayStation Now
2015-09-16[11] ¥? ?


|og:site_name=Sega Retro
|title=Sonic the Fighters
|twitter:[email protected]

Sonic the Fighters (ソニック・ザ・ファイターズ), originally released as Sonic Championship in North America and Europe, is a versus fighting game developed for Sega Model 2B CRX arcade hardware by Sega AM2. It was released in relatively small numbers across the world during 1996.

To date, Sonic the Fighters is the only Sonic fighting game of its kind.



Sonic the Fighters is a one-on-one versus fighting game similar in design to AM2's previous arcade fighting game outings; Virtua Fighter (and Virtua Fighter 2) and Fighting Vipers. Like these games, the objective is to attack the opposing player until a health bar depletes to zero over the best of three rounds. Rounds are also time-limited, meaning if nobody is defeated after a time counter reaches zero, the player with the most energy remaining is declared the winner. If both health bars are at the same value at the end of the round, a "draw" is called and the round is played again.

As one of eight selectable fighters, the player is tasked with completing ten matches in succession to beat the game. There are also three buttons, "barrier" (Block), "punch" (Punch), and "kick" (Kick), which along with a joystick for movement, can combined to perform more complicated moves and inflict more damage. Taking cues from Fighting Vipers, each of the arenas is enclosed by walls, although unlike that game, it is not possible to slam opponents through them at the end of the match.

Like other Sega fighting games from this period, the world is presented in 3D, but characters still fight on a 2D plane (albeit one that "rotates" depending on which moves are used)


Under normal circumstances, Sonic the Fighters contains eight playable characters, with a further two being controlled exclusively by the computer.

When two similar characters face each other the second player will be replaced with a grayscale version. If a character defeats the first eight opponents, he or she will face Metal Sonic and Doctor Eggman,

Move list



While likely not intentional, Sonic the Fighters started its development during the creation of Fighting Vipers. During his spare time, an unknown AM2 developer added crude, but playable versions of Sonic and Tails to the Fighting Vipers codebase. Neither were finished and cannot be selected during normal play, but it was enough to attract AM2 head Yu Suzuki, who delivered the Sonic the Fighters concept to Hiroshi Kataoka.[12]

At first, Kataoka was worried that Sonic characters beating each other up wouldn't be approved by Yuji Naka, however Naka was actually very receptive to the concept. A decision was then made to continue working with the Fighting Vipers engine, modifying it to better represent the world of Sonic, and simplifying the gameplay. Sonic the Fighters remains very close to Fighting Vipers in terms of style, with one of several unused characters even resembling Honey from the aforementioned game.

Sonic the Fighters was the first game to render Sonic the Hedgehog as a 3D polygonal model in real time. Many teams at Sega struggled at the time to convert what was then a predominantly 2D character into the third dimension, and AM2 were initially no exception, however Sonic is unique for having been partially designed in 3D from the outset. A physical 3D model of Sonic, used by the artists of the original Sonic the Hedgehog to better understand how the character should aniamte, was reportedly given by Naka to the team for reference.


From the moment of its announcement it was expected, and later confirmed, that Sonic the Fighters would be ported to the Sega Saturn in the months that followed, however no such version ever materialised. Sonic and Tails are not present in the Saturn version of Fighting Vipers either, however Bean and Bark would make an appearance in the 1997 release of Fighters Megamix.

Sonic the Fighters would not make it to the home until the 2005 release of Sonic Gems Collection. It was at this point where the "Sonic Championship" name was dropped from international versions and has never been used since. Sonic the Fighters would then be brought to the PlayStation Network and Xbox Live Arcade as part of Model 2 Collection, with online play and the ability to play as the boss characters, Metal Sonic and Dr. Eggman, as well as unused character Honey the Cat.

While a fighting game of this style has not been attempted since Sonic the Fighters' original release, Sonic Battle for Game Boy Advance offers an alternative style of Sonic fighting game, and Sonic was added as a selectable fighter in the Wii game Super Smash Bros. Brawl and its two sequels; Super Smash Bros. for Wii U and Super Smash Bros. for 3DS.


Production credits

Promotional material


Photo gallery

Physical scans

External links


Sonic the Fighters

Sonic the Fighters title.png

Main page

Magazine articles


Sonic games for the following systems
 1991  Waku Waku Sonic Patrol Car     1993  Sonic the Hedgehog | SegaSonic Cosmo Fighter Galaxy Patrol | Sonic the Hedgehog 2 | SegaSonic the Hedgehog     1996  Sonic the Fighters     2011  Sonic & Sega All-Stars Racing    
 1992  UFO Mini: SegaSonic     1993  Sonic the Hedgehog | SegaSonic Popcorn Shop     1994  Sonic's Space Tours     1997  Sonic the Hedgehog AWP     2002  Sonic & Tails Spinner     2003  CR Sonic     2007  Sonic Spinner     2008  Sonic Live!    
Sony PlayStation 3 PlayStation Network
 2010  Sonic the Hedgehog 4 Episode I | Sonic Adventure     2011  Sonic the Hedgehog | Sonic the Hedgehog 2 | Sonic the Hedgehog Anniversary Bundle | Sonic the Hedgehog CD     2012  Sonic the Hedgehog 4 Episode II | Sonic Adventure 2 | Classic Sonic Bundle | Sonic the Fighters     2013  Sonic the Hedgehog Master Collection    
Microsoft Xbox Live Arcade
 2007  Sonic the Hedgehog | Sonic the Hedgehog 2     2009  Sonic the Hedgehog 3 | Sonic & Knuckles     2010  Sonic the Hedgehog 4 Episode I | Sonic Adventure     2011  Sonic the Hedgehog CD     2012  Sonic the Hedgehog 4 Episode II | Sonic Adventure 2 | Sonic the Fighters