Sonic Drift

From Sonic Retro


Sonic Drift title.png
Sonic Drift
System(s): Sega Game Gear
Publisher: Sega
Peripherals supported: Gear-to-Gear Cable
Genre: Racing[1]
Number of players: 1-2
Release Date RRP Code Rating
Sega Game Gear
1994-03-18[1] ¥4,800 G-3415

Sonic Drift (ソニックドリフト) is a kart racing game for the Sega Game Gear initially released only in Japan. It features Sonic the Hedgehog, Miles "Tails" Prower, Amy Rose, and Dr. Eggman, and is a typical racing game of the early 1990s. The game's racetracks and order they are played in are the same as the original Sonic the Hedgehog. It also had a sequel, Sonic Drift 2.


Drift Green Hill.png
Gameplay screenshot.

The objective of the game is to win the three different Chaos GPs (green, yellow and red Chaos Emerald). Each Chaos GP has six different tracks based on the original Sonic game levels' design. The players will race around a track against the other three characters for a top position, using 2 to accelerate, 1 to brake and the latter combined with a direction allows to drift corners, though abusing it will send the character into spinning out of control. Going out of the asphalt track drops the speed immediately and in the sidelines there are several obstacles that will stop the character altogether if they are hit. The Up direction on the directional pad can use Rings collected on the track as a special move, unique to each character.

Each track is composed of a closed circuit with three laps. At the end of the track, points are awarded based on the finishing positions: 1st place - 3 points, 2nd place - 2 points, 3rd place - 1 point and 4th place - 0 points. At the end of each tournament, the character with most points naturally wins. There are two difficulty settings for the game, Normal or Hard, which can be chosen via the options menu.

Additionally, there are two other modes to play: Free Run is a practice mode in which the player can race alone on any course as well as view the best times for each course. The player can end a Free Run at any time during gameplay by pausing the game and pressing 1+2 simultaneously. Versus is a standard 2-player mode using the Gear-to-Gear Cable in which both players race each other on any course, with a win/loss record kept only for one session.


Character Vehicle Special Move Gameplay
Drift Sonic.png Sonic Cyclone Speed dash (same as red monitor power-up) Good speed and acceleration, poor handling.
Drift Tails.png Tails MTP-01 Whirlwind Jump over (same as spring power-up) Good handling, poor speed.
Drift Eggman.png Eggman Egg Typhoon Drop mine (same as collision) Good speed, poor acceleration.
Drift Amy.png Amy Breeze Toss heart (reduces others' speed) Good acceleration, poor speed


There are several power-ups scattered throughout each course. The power-ups can be accumulated and they respawn in each lap.

Drift ring.png
Ring (リングMedia:SonicDrift GG JP manual.pdf[2])
Collect two Rings allows the player to perform the character's Special Move. Rings can be lost due to using them, abusing the drift or obstacle collision.
Drift redmonitor.png
High Speed (ハイスピードMedia:SonicDrift GG JP manual.pdf[2])
Makes the player dash down the track with a momentary burst of speed.
Drift bluemonitor.png
Muteki (無敵Media:SonicDrift GG JP manual.pdf[2])
Makes the player invincible for a short period of time. The BGM during invincibility is based on "Sonic - You Can Do Anything" from Sonic the Hedgehog CD.
Drift spring.png
Jump Bane (ジャンプバネMedia:SonicDrift GG JP manual.pdf[2])
These all launch the player up into the air, increasing the speed.



Sonic Retro emblem.svg Main article: Sonic Drift/Development


Also released on

Production credits

  • Main Programmer: Wa-Da
  • Programmer: Shinchan
  • Designer: Choko, Gen, East
  • Sound Creator: N.Gee
  • Planner: K'
  • Director: Hase
  • Producer: Asohy
  • Special Thanks to..: Wahaha, T.D.H
  • Presented by: Sega
Source: In-game credits[3]


Sonic Retro emblem.svg Main article: Sonic Drift/Manuals

Magazine articles

Sonic Retro emblem.svg Main article: sega:Sonic Drift/Magazine articles

Promotional material

Sonic Retro emblem.svg Main article: Sonic Drift/Promotional material


Physical scans

Segaretro-round.svg Reception »
Game Gear, JP
Sonicdrift back cover.jpgNospine-small.pngSdrift-box-jap.jpg
Game Gear, ZA
Sdrift Box ZA.jpg
Drift gg jp cart.jpg

Technical information

ROM dump status

System Hash Size Build Date Source Comments
Sega Game Gear
CRC32 68f0a776
MD5 8093ef0eeb147f2a938fae3e5a26d8b3
SHA-1 fef5d69093df2d774ed274a4079790f8778577fc
512kB Cartridge (JP)
Sega Game Gear
CRC32 baac1fc0
MD5 db3e87dc719c5d6f13859eee81cca297
SHA-1 462bdf9bfac3eb9b389142b55be39608c3343223
512kB Cartridge (JP) Demo Download.svg (180 kB) (info) Page


Sonic Drift
Sonic Drift title.png

Main page

Promotional material
Magazine articles

Hidden content

Sonic the Hedgehog games for the following systems
Sega Master System
Sega Game Gear
 1991  Sonic the Hedgehog     1992  Sonic the Hedgehog 2     1993  Sonic Chaos | Dr. Robotnik's Mean Bean Machine     1994  Sonic Drift | Sonic Spinball | Sonic the Hedgehog Triple Trouble     1995  Sonic Drift 2 | Tails' Skypatrol | Tails Adventures | Sonic Labyrinth | Sonic 2 in 1     1996  Sonic Blast    
 Unreleased  Sonic's Edusoft