Sonic's First Design: A Look Back

Sonic the Hedgehog movie sequel hopes to start production in March 2021
Sonic the Hedgehog movie sequel hopes to start production in March 2021 from

The Birth of Sonic

In the early 90s, video gaming was at its peak, and the world was hungry for a new mascot to rival Nintendo’s Mario. Enter Sonic the Hedgehog, a spiky blue speedster who would go on to become one of the most iconic characters in gaming history. But before Sonic became the sleek, modern design we know today, he had a very different look.

Sonic’s First Design

The original concept for Sonic was created by Naoto Ohshima, a designer at Sega. His first design featured a character that was much more human-like, with elongated limbs and a more realistic appearance. This early version of Sonic was also much taller and thinner than the character we know and love today.

Ohshima’s first design featured a character that was meant to be cool and edgy, with a leather jacket and a rebellious attitude. The initial design also featured a bandana instead of Sonic’s trademark red sneakers.

The Evolution of Sonic’s Design

After the initial design phase, Sonic underwent several changes before settling on the design we know today. One of the biggest changes was the decision to make Sonic shorter and rounder, which made him more appealing to younger audiences.

The iconic red sneakers were also added to the design, which gave Sonic a more distinct and recognizable look. The bandana was removed, and Sonic’s spiky blue hair became one of his most defining features.

The Impact of Sonic’s Design

Sonic’s design was a huge part of his success, as it set him apart from other video game characters of the time. His cool, edgy look and lightning-fast speed made him an instant fan favorite, and his popularity only continued to grow.

The success of Sonic’s design also paved the way for other iconic video game characters, such as Crash Bandicoot and Spyro the Dragon. These characters all had their own unique designs that made them stand out in a crowded market.

The Future of Sonic’s Design

As technology continues to advance, it’s likely that Sonic’s design will continue to evolve. We may see new versions of Sonic that feature even more realistic graphics, or we may see a return to his classic design for nostalgic purposes.

Regardless of how Sonic’s design changes in the future, one thing is for sure: he will always be one of the most iconic video game characters of all time, and his design will continue to inspire and influence future generations of game designers.


Sonic’s first design may have been vastly different from the character we know today, but it was an important step in the evolution of one of gaming’s most beloved icons. From his rebellious bandana-wearing days to his sleek and speedy modern design, Sonic has always been a character that captures the hearts and imaginations of gamers around the world.

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