VI. The Dark Age of Light

From Sonic Retro

This article is part of
Hidden Palace Zone: ACLA-ATD4
by Nayr T'nargh.
Individual pages...
I. Introduction
II. Dawn
III. Ethiopia
IV. “The Golden Age”
V. Hackers
VI. The Dark Age of Light
VII. The Cleansing
VIII. A New Start
IX. Deception: The Hacker
X. Astray and Confusion Abounds
XI. Conclusion
XII. Versions
XIII. Credits
See also...


VI. The Dark Age of Light -- while the hacking scene was thriving, the basis of the golden age had been nearly forgotten

Remember 12,000BC in Chrono Trigger? This was the SSC's variation on that theme. With all the hacking stuff that had been happening, people got very wrapped up in it making MAJOR discoveries. Behind the scenes, however, there were numerous scandals and deceit occurring... People were getting way too serious about their work and the shift towards politics began. The golden age was being forgotten by the newer members...

Overall happenings and history

A lot of good things happened. All to do with hacking! Of course, there was one huge scandal that still remains the bane of my existence to this day...


This was the very first hacking group. Started by Metal X, it was supposed to make hacking faster and better by having several people branch off like a game organization to do separate parts. It’s just that support was lacking and it slowly died. While we had betas for every one of our games, none were released and Andy quickly scrapped the site.

Sonic 2 Delta HOAX

Hacker extraordinaire, Esrael L.G. Neto, found all sorts of hacking info and released something which to this day is often referred to as the best Sonic hack of all time. Sonic 2 Delta had missing art, completed levels, new levels and much more. Certainly a break through in Sonic hacking.

Wrapping up loose ends: Nemesis

Nemesis, who had mostly been lurking all this time (with the exception of a few hoaxes given to SoSth back in the Ethiopia era) finally came in and broke the ROM down into pieces and nearly FULLY MAPPED every Sonic game from Sonic 1 through 3. He is responsible for much more as well, which will be covered in just a few paragraphs.

The “Epsilon”

Probably the third biggest scandal of the SSRG at this time. It started when Nayr borrowed a game from Jordan Haddock, a friend of his in Longmont, CO. On Jordan’s megadrive, the game had what Nayr thought was a new special stage that he hadn’t seen before which was the fourth special stage up until the last checkpoint and the rest was the scattered ring layout of the seventh special stage. Glitches occurred all over the place. Nayr, without thinking, posted that he had found a pre-release Sonic game which he dubbed Epsilon (following Cyan’s beta document of the Golden Age era). When Nayr got home, the game didn’t produce what his friend’s had. It just had a checksum error. It still worked on his friend’s, however, so he kept posting about it. It’s just that the special stage wasn’t glitchy anymore and they got different glitches every time they turned on the game. It wasn’t long before both Jordan and Nayr figured out that the game had to be dusty. This was no beta. Being scared, Nayr continued to lie about the game for another three weeks before he finally revealed what had happened to Wetflame on ICQ. The next day, he told the S2B message board. Nayr has been ridiculed by many for this ever since. It has now evolved into a “fake beta” post like several others that had occurred. For the record, this was not the case.

UPDATE: I wasn't completely honest here the first time around, so I'm going to set the record straight. The cartridge was glitchy on my friend's megadrive.. but when I tried it on mine I got multiple checksum errors before it finally worked on mine and played just fine with nothing weird at all. I knew it wasn't a beta a lot longer than I claimed in the above paragraph.


The achievements were major here, all! Mainly in the area of sprites...

Alpha sprite location found

While searching through Damian’s Sonic 2 Hacking Guide, I noticed that two sprite areas were unknown, following the beta HPZ enemies. I went into the beta’s sprite array and entered in these sprites in place of some HPZ areas. The two enemies acted remarkably like the alpha enemies were presumed to. These were thought to be the Tricerabot and Crocodile, which was later confirmed by Esrael...

Alpha sprite art found through location

Esrael figured out that the level was loading the wrong art for those sprites and corrected it. When he did, the two sprites found by Nayr were indeed the Tricerabot and Crocodile. Esrael went on to discover a three-eyed fish (“Blinky”) and a bubble badnik...

Even later a few other minor ones were found. All (save the bubble badnik) are included in the delta hoax.

Sonic 2 Delta HOAX

The Delta hoax, discussed earlier, was a major breakthrough as it showed off the missing alpha art in action. It also displayed the areas covered in the alpha hoax with more “flair”.

Message Boards

The message boards underwent seriously hard times...

Area 51

The second biggest scandal that had happened, Pachuka took down Area 51 with some friends for “revenge”. More info on this coming later...

Pelord’s “Sonic 2 Beta”

Became what the scene (other than a few that only visited that MB and a few that visited others) thought was an embarrassment. It was a more “fun” board: too zany for the Golden Age, yet not serious enough for the “new” scene. It became an outcast and another scandal almost emerged from it because of Sonic Cult... again.

Sonic Cult

Steadily gaining membership, it was referred to as a disease / virus by A51ers. Sonic Cult still stuck to its same method, but because of this got in even more trouble... whether it was their fault or not. They got the “bad boys” label and everything is always blamed on them whether it was them or not.

“SHC Boards 1 & 2” / Sonic Cult SHC

Because of the impostors and stupidity occurring on the Anyboard, Damian moved his boards to Sonic Cult. This was protested by many at first, but soon people came on over and raised Cult support even more...


† - not very active