<forumuser name="MattATobin" />
Matt A. Tobin (Known Aliases/Screen-names 'mattatobin', 'binaryoutcast', 'mattcast_webmstr', 'captain_culex', 'Elkern4926') is a long time "spectator" of the Sonic Community. Staying out of the public eye of the sonic community for most of his tenure in the sonic community. Until February 5, 2010 when he signed onto #retro for the first time.
You can usually find him in Sonic Retro's IRC channel as well as numerous other channels and networks on the internet. He also is registered on the 5 major instant messaging protocols and Skype.
Matt A. Tobin’s obsession with Sonic can be traced back to when his family got their first Sega Genesis bundled with Sonic 2 in 1993. He instantly fell in love with the video game; as well as with each zone’s music. When he was not playing the game, he would often go into the options menu and listen to the sound test for hours on end. It is no secret that Tobin’s favorite zone music is Metropolis Zone. So, there could be hours upon hours when this zones music could be heard playing in an infinite loop as only the Genesis could play it.
By 1999 he found his first Sonic related site, The Sonic Foundation (tSf), which subsequently satisfied his thirst Sonic music. tSf not only had a lot of information on all the Sonic games for the genesis, but some of the more modern games Tobin had not had a chance to play. The Foundation also had a music section on their website which used the Real Player plug-in. He found a way to download all the zones music from genesis games to his computers hard drive. Because of the fact that the Real Audio format was a horrid format with a lousy player, he even managed to find a program to convert the audio format to MP3. Tobin still has and listens this same Sonic music library today!
Sometime in early 2002, Matt A. Tobin was downloading and emulating the Sonic games for Genesis on his personal computer. He was intrigued at the fact that there was also a prototype for Sonic 2 also. In addition, Tobin was also fascinated with the fan hacked versions of sonic games; especially with one in particular . Sonic 2 Ultima was the hack in question. Tobin found it to be refreshing and in the spirit of the unmodified version. Though largely in complete at the time, he felt that S2Ultima’s professional level layout was as good if not better than the original. Wanting to learn how it was created, he found met Ultima on AOL Instant Messenger. Tobin told Ultima how much he enjoyed his hack and expressed an interest in hacking Sonic roms himself. At Ultima's suggestion Tobin bought SonED from Stealth for a very reasonable $15.
From Mid 2002 to Early 2004, Using SonED and various resources on the internet and help from Ultima, Tobin attempted to create his own hacked version of Sonic 2. Besides SonED, Tobin also used other rom hacking tools including Gerbilsoft ROM Hacking Studio and Sonic Tweaker (not to be confused with the long time community member of the same name). He had decided to make his hack a frozen/winter/arctic themed hack because it had never been done. During early development of the hack of EHZ Act 1's layout, he sent an IPS patch to Ultima who had told Tobin that he showed a lot of potential. Tobin would work on this hack off and on for quite a while and completed level layouts for EHZ and Object placement for EHZ Act 1 and started working on other zones. By the end of its development, Level order and names, as well as palettes for each level was altered; with Ultima's help he even restored HPZ in a glitchy form. (Collision Data and some object data were not yet restored).
By Mid to Late 2004 - By this time Tobin had lost touch with Ultima and eventually shelved his hacking attempt. He also visited the Sonic Community and less and less.
In late 2006 / Early 2007 - Matt A. Tobin got a "sort of weird feeling" and a "strange desire" to check out what was happening in the Sonic Community and went on to rediscover the Sonic 2 Beta website and Sonic CulT and read that the Sonic the Hedgehog 2 (Nick Arcade prototype) had been found and dumped. For a short time he routinely kept up on the events of this release and the Sonic Community in general. However, this revisit to the community did not last for more than a few months. Tobin became bored with Sonic again and focused on his other projects such as his content depraved website.
Sometime in 2008, He got an inkling to once again venture into the Sonic Community and found that a MAJOR event had occurred, namely the February 23, 2008 Proto Release. From then on he lurked about Sonic Retro, Sonic CulT, and several other Sonic Sites on a regular basis.
On February 5, 2010 - He signed on and registered his name (MattATobin) on #retro (The Sonic Retro IRC channel) On February 6, 2010, He registered on Sonic Retro Forums under user name 'MattATobin'. He wrote a relatively lengthy validation request post using the validation guidelines. Tweaker who was impressed that Matt A. Tobin took the time to read the validation guidelines validated his account and Matt A. Tobin was moved to the members group.
Late February 20, 2010, Tobin was talking to Iron Sonic on Skype about the history of the Sonic Community and Matt A. Tobin noted that he remembered a number of events in the community. After a few hours of digging around his own memory, he traced his "spectator" status in the Sonic Community farther and farther back in time remembering that the first sonic related website he found on the internet around 1999 was The Sonic Foundation (tSf). Amazed and scared at the fact that even though Tobin was not in the public eye or participated in many of the communities historical and controversial events, he was quite aware of them. This resulted in his brain almost exploding.
After Tobin recovered his sanity from this realization Iron Sonic suggested that he should send a message to Tweaker and see if he can find any documented proof of his affiliation with the community beyond knowing Ultima. Tobin asked Iron Sonic if he would mind doing that. Iron Sonic agreed and sent the message off to Tweaker who had apparently gone to sleep for the day.
The next day at 9:37 AM - Tweaker Messaged Tobin via AOL Instant Messenger about Iron Sonic's request for information from any archives Tweaker had access to. Tobin explained the whole deal to Tweaker and a short search began. By 9:47 AM - Tweaker had found the proof of a registration on an Sonic 2 Beta forum under the user name 'Binary Outcast' and with that Tobin became a "New Oldbie" as Tweaker and Tobin coined it.
By the end of 2010 and in 2011, Tobin has been making cryptic references to something he calls the "New Tobin Paradigm". What this all entails is sketchy at best. So far it has been discovered that the "New Tobin Paradigm" is an important part to Tobin's future involvement in the "WASHINGTON?!" plans in which several members and one admin of retro are planning a move to the Seattle area of Washington State.
The paradigm includes his new found ability to abstain from drinking massive amounts of alcohol and/or drinking in a responsible manner. It has also been identified as some forced changes in Tobin's core personality regardless of what various persona's have already established. In day to day life Tobin has enacted several "protocols" of the paradigm to prepare him self for the move to Washington state and the chance for a better life.
On February 12, 2011 for unknown reasons Tobin and several people were suddenly kicked out of the wiki mainspace. Later he found out that a new (old?) policy had been enacted by Hivebrain and later approved by the Administration to only allow people of notoriety to be in the wiki's mainspace. So far Tobin has not demonstrated such notoriety, except of course in his own mind. This has enviably lead him to find more ways to contribute to Retro, and to that end actually did so on May, 8th of 2011 by contributing to the SCHG_How-to:Expand_the_music_index_to_start_at_$00_instead_of_$80_(Sonic_2_Clone_Driver_version) .
This of course is small in comparison to what others have done but it may be a start for Tobin to reclaim his mainspace status that he, albeit undeserving so far, feels was wrongfully taken from him.
As previously mentioned Tobin has been around for years just not in the public eye. Following his participation in the 2011 Sonic Amateur Games Expo Tobin has decided to use his privileges as an Oldbie of Sonic Retro to move his page back to mainspace and reclaim his scener status. It is currently unknown at this point if this change will go unchallenged.
Tobin's page was moved once again to the user namespace. He has since moved his page back and has started a discussion about it on the Discussion feature of this wiki. There he lines out the reasons he should be considered a scener and wishes to get a response from Hivebrain this time instead of just a ban from editing the wiki.
The battle continues!