English manual transcript
Japanese manual translation

Background Info


Unique Features & Innovations

Red Herrings
Team Radical
Spunkie, Bunkie, and Ted, 3 wannabe heroes, were supposedly posing as a 5th team in the game. Rumors of a 5th team came from several sources, and the names are from the official Playstation magazine. Many guessed that the names were fake, but the magazine offered no hint that they were joking.

Version changes
The English PS2 version and the Japanese versions include both English and Japanese voice acting, but the English GC and X-Box versions include English voice acting only.

5/12/03 Sega E3 Press Release 1
PlayStation®2 computer entertainment system
Xbox® video game system from Microsoft
Nintendo GameCubeTM
Category: Action Platform
Developer: SONICTEAMTM, LTD., a SEGA® development studio
Ship: North America: Q1 2004
Europe: Q1 2004
Japan: Q4 2003
SEGA's legendary mascot Sonic The Hedgehog® makes his historic multi-platform debut and embarks on his biggest adventure ever, with his trademark blazing speed and a new gameplay twist in "Sonic Heroes." Sonic and his friends have evolved, adopting a configuration feature that lets gamers control three playable characters simultaneously, using Sonic's speed, Knuckles' power, and Tails' ability to fly, to conquer massive worlds. This team-based gameplay marks the next evolution in Sonic's gaming career, taking platform gaming to a completely new level. Using the three formations and the powerful moves that each team member has, Sonic and his friends combine forces to battle the ultimate evil.
Play as one of four teams for a total of 12 playable characters - Team Sonic, Team Dark, Team Rose, or Team Chaotix - each with their own unique signature moves and story line

Each team boasts multiple specialized stages with unique missions and CG movies driving each "team" story forward

Experiment with team formations to learn the best way to defeat enemies, solve puzzles, and navigate massive environments
5/12/03 Sega E3 Press Release 2
LOS ANGELES – Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) – (May 12, 2002) – SEGA ® today announced that it will deliver its top-selling franchise of all time – Sonic The Hedgehog ® – to the largest audience of gamers worldwide, launching four new Sonic The Hedgehog games on all next-generation console and handheld platforms this fiscal year. The highly-anticipated “Sonic Heroes, ™ ” an all-new title in the Sonic The Hedgehog series, will debut on the PlayStation ® 2 computer entertainment system, Nintendo GameCube ™ and the Xbox ® video game system from Microsoft. Additionally, building off the success of the Sonic franchise on Nintendo GameCube, SEGA will release “Sonic Adventure ™ DX Director’s Cut” exclusively for Nintendo GameCube. Finally, Sonic will return to the Game Boy ® Advance with the release of “Sonic Pinball Party ™ ” and “Sonic Battle ™ .”

“Sonic The Hedgehog is one of the most popular video game characters of all time,” said Shinobu Toyoda, executive vice president of content strategy and business development, SEGA of America, Inc. “Bringing Sonic The Hedgehog games to all next generation platforms provides SEGA with unprecedented potential for the franchise as the company builds to become a leading independent content publisher.” Debuting on PlayStation 2, Xbox and Nintendo GameCube, “Sonic Heroes” marks Sonic’s first simultaneous multi-platform launch in history, as well as his first-ever appearance on PlayStation 2 and Xbox. Sonic’s biggest adventure to date, “Sonic Heroes” introduces an innovative new squad-based game style, where players control a team of three characters, taking advantage of each member’s unique abilities and skills to thwart the plans of Sonic’s nemesis, the evil Dr. Eggman .

“Sonic Adventure DX Director’s Cut” is the definitive version of the blockbuster SEGA Dreamcast ™ classic, featuring more than 50 bonus missions and enhanced graphics and audio to take full advantage of the Nintendo GameCube. “Sonic Pinball Party” delivers hours of on-the- go pinball fun with themed boards based on classic SONICTEAM games, including “Nights ™ ,” “Samba de Amigo ™ ” and “Sonic The Hedgehog ® ” for the Game Boy Advance. Also for Game Boy Advance, “Sonic Battle” delivers thrilling head-to-head battles between some of the best-known Sonic The Hedgehog characters, including Sonic, Tails and Amy Rose.

One of the most recognized and celebrated video game characters of all time, Sonic The Hedgehog has appeared in numerous video games across multiple console, handheld and wireless platforms over the past 10 years. Consistently a top-selling franchise, Sonic The Hedgehog continues to be a popular icon worldwide in 2003 and beyond. This summer, Sonic The Hedgehog will come alive in interactive electronic handheld games included in McDonald’s ® Happy Meals ® at participating McDonald’s restaurants throughout North America. Additionally, Sonic The Hedgehog will soon explode onto television in the all-new animated series Sonic X ™ .

Recently debuted in Japan and coming soon to North America, Sonic X features 52 exhilarating episodes including a new character named Christopher and exciting new adventures sure to captivate Sonic fans around the world. Finally, Sonic will debut on the Nokia N-Gage ™ mobile game deck in “SonicN ™ ,” a side-scrolling action game packed with the charms and characters of the Sonic series.

5/21/03 Interview
E3 Interview:
Sonic Heroes: An Interview with the Creators

By Ben Barker

"We want to make this year the year of Sonic," says Yuji Naka, the legendary game designer who created Sega's classic console character for the Genesis game Sonic the Hedgehog over a decade ago. Currently he is president of SONICTEAM, LTD., the SEGA development studio that produces exciting, action-packed console hits featuring Sonic and other cool original characters.

Sonic will be everywhere in the coming year (and beyond) as SEGA and SONICTEAM celebrate the blazing blue Hedgehog's twelfth anniversary with the most ambitious Sonic game yet, the multiplatform release Sonic Heroes™—an all-new 3-D platform adventure that brings Sonic to Xbox for the first time ever. Yuji Naka and Takashi Iizuka, the director of SONIC TEAM USA and leader of the group working directly on Sonic Heroes, kindly granted an interview on the final day of E3 2003.

"For Sonic's twelfth anniversary, we've decided to release an animated series and a new game," Naka explained, "We really want to extend our audience for Sonic to the Xbox and multiple platforms." Sonic Heroes should have no trouble winning over both fans of the classic character and newcomers to the Sonic universe. "Through 12 years of Sonic history, our themes have been speed and cool gameplay," said Iizuka, "The Xbox is a very high-performance console. I would like Xbox users who have never experienced Sonic to experience two things: the speed, and the cool comfortable feeling you get when you really catch [how to play] the game."

The simultaneous use of three characters presents perhaps the most stunning new development in Sonic Heroes: team gameplay. Players can switch between team leaders at the touch of a button, tailoring play style to fit any situation. For example, the Sonic Heroes E3 demo featured Team Sonic. With Sonic in the lead position, the team relies on speed, barreling ahead in a fast-moving single-file formation; Knuckles leads with his fists, giving the team a powerful arrowhead formation; and the aerobatic Tails leads the team in a tall, light formation good for clearing long jumps and avoiding enemies on the ground.

But, that's just the tip of the iceberg, Iizuka told us. "Collaborative, group play really enhances speed, power, and freedom. At E3, we just wanted to present team action and intentionally introduced Team Sonic alone," he explained, "But, we have three more teams, 12 characters altogether. Team Rose is designed for beginners and is very easy for anyone to access. Team Dark is for those who really want to break something and knock back the enemies—the power makes gameplay feel really cool. Team Chaotix is incredibly unique: Depending on the stage, you have different objectives and play styles. You might need to take time and search for something, get somewhere very quickly, or even use stealth and hide." Multiple teams add great replay and multiplayer value, since the teams have separate starting points, exclusive levels, and plot lines. "Each team has an independent story, but they can merge very subtly at certain points," said Iizuka. "You can enjoy great complexity of interaction between the teams."

The choice of teams (and choices within teams) makes Sonic Heroes a game for every gamer. "The style of play depends on the team and the user. Some people might want to slowly fly, evading the enemies; some will want to aggressively fight," said Iizuka. "In the beginning, you can pick the basic style to play; as you advance, you will figure out what kind of play is the best style for you and how to take advantage of it. For example, you'll learn that if you're in the air, you can change formation as you land and hit the ground running, to keep things fast."

As the year of Sonic builds up to breakneck speed, what does the future hold for the famous blue hedgehog and the powerful green Xbox? "I think Sonic will keep going," said Naka, Sonic's creator. "I hope we can release the next Sonic game on multiple platforms, too." He added, "Sonic has been running for 12 years, and we've kept creating speedy, action-oriented games. But, we could only do this because the users love Sonic. I hope we will obtain a lot of fans."

From my experience playing Sonic Heroes at E3, I can say, without a doubt, this game has made a fan out of this old Genesis user and current Xbox gamer. Watch for Sonic, Tails, Knuckles, and nine more teamed-up characters to spin their way onto Xbox in early 2004!

9/6/03 Rumor (Reported By Super Shadic)
It's time for something new. My friend from GameFAQS received an e-mail from his friend, who is a rep of Sega. This is his exact post:

Now before you all flame me, ROCK BOGARD specifically, I want you to know that this came in an email from one of my reps at SEGA. In the past they have been known to be creative and play tricks in their press releases, one of which was a formal announcement that the original Panzer Dragoon was NOT a hidden feature in Orta, which most of us know to be a true bonus in the game. At any rate, here's the bulk of the email minus some privacy tags deleted to protect myself and my rep...

This email is to alert you to an issue we have recently uncovered pertaining to SEGA's upcoming multiplatform launch of "Sonic Heroes." There have been rumors flying around the industry that a group of three wannabe heroes are posing as a fifth team in the game. As you may know, the game features four teams consisting of heroes from the legendary Sonic The Hedgehog franchise: Team Sonic, Team Dark, Team Rose and Team Chaotix. Apparently this band of hooligans is claiming they are the fifth element, if you will. The rascals have even gone so far as to suggest they are faster than Sonic, can fly higher than Tails and are more powerful than Knuckles.

SEGA obviously views this attempt to join the game as nothing more than fanaticism gone wild, but we wanted you to be aware in the event that the fictitious team contacts you. Should you hear anything regarding this situation, please let us know. We would hate for it to get out of control.

Now I'm not saying that this confirms the possability of a hidden 5th team, but I wouldn't put it past SEGA. As I stated in the past SEGA has made false announcements in hopes of drumming up publicity for their upcoming releases. That being said, I can only assume that this altest report of an additional 5th team to be false, could in fact be truth covered in strategic marketing.

Take it as you will, but I tend to believe SEGA has something more up there sleeves for Sonic Heroes.

Another theory could be uncovered in their description of this new team...faster than Sonic, fly higher than Tails, and more powerful than Knuckles??? All this could mean is that a Hyper version of Team Sonic could be a deffinite card in the stack...who knows.

Anyhow, it's fun to theorize about it. SEGA does have something up their sleeves, my rep isn't talking, and he's having too much fun torturing me with new bits."

What do you think? Due to the e-mail, it doesn't sound like Super Sonic, Super Tails, or Super Knuckles. But it states "these hooligans". Could it be possible? Could it be possible that it would be Eggman's robots? Or, do you think this team can be various Sonic Team characters/characters that have to do with Sonic, or this can be just one lousy rumor. I'm going with the first two choices I made.

SHQ: The wannabe team didn't show up in the game, so it isn’t clear whether this rumor was official or not. The "sega rep" quote also appeared on GameSpot, so maybe this was true and plans for a wannabe team were canceled.


Kikizo Games E3 2003 Sonic Heroes Hands-On Report (5/12/03)
IGN E3 2003 Sonic Heroes Hands-On Report (5/15/03)
Insert Credit E3 2003 Sega Info (5/16/03)
Planet GameCube Sonic Heroes Impressions (5/16/03)
Planet GameCube Sonic Heroes Impressions 2 (5/16/03)
GamerFeed Sonic Heroes Hands-On Preview(8/15/03)
Official Sites
Sonic Heroes @ Sonic Team (Japanese) - Features quite a bit of stuff, including voice clips. Sonic Heroes @ Sonic Team (English) (Opened 5/15/03)
Sonic Heroes @ Sega of America
- Info, wallpaper, screens, and a flash puzzle game by Sega of Europe - Wallpaper, screens, and miscellaneous stuff of interest, including a team quiz. Some of the screens are exclusive.
Sonic Heroes @ Sega of Japan (Opened 5/15/03)
Sonic Heroes Music @ WaveMaster Sonic Central @ Sega of America