The Winter Zone is a scrapped level in Sonic 2 that was supposed to reuse many recolored graphics taken from Brenda Ross' Dust Hill Zone, but with the desert elements replaced by christmas trees and other such items.
The Winter Zone was supposed to be a palette swap of Dust Hill according to an interview with Brenda Ross. Her answer to question 20 is as follows:
|“||The desert zone was as you see in that image, with cactus and assorted plants. It was designed to have a palette change, which turned the sand into snow, and you’d have a winter scene. We had to be fairly ingenious with such a limited palette. In the winter zone, (that’s what I call it), instead of cactus, I had created Christmas trees, which I thought looked kinda cool.||„|
According to Tim Skelly, not many of the winter-exclusive items were completed before it was canceled.
|Sonic the Hedgehog 2 (16-bit)|