Sonic X-treme

Sonic X-treme was a platform game developed by the Sega Technical Institute from 1994 until its cancellation in 1996. It was planned as the first fully 3D Sonic the Hedgehog game, taking Sonic into the 3D era of video games, and the first original Sonic game for the Sega Saturn. The storyline followed Sonic on his journey to stop Dr. Robotnik from stealing six magic rings from Tiara Boobowski and her father.

Sonic X-treme
Conceptual box art
Developer(s)Sega Technical Institute
Publisher(s)Sega
Producer(s)Mike Wallis
Designer(s)
Programmer(s)
  • Chris Coffin
  • Ofer Alon
Artist(s)
  • Ross Harris
  • Fei Cheng
  • Andrew Probert
Composer(s)Howard Drossin
SeriesSonic the Hedgehog
Platform(s)
ReleaseCanceled
Genre(s)Platform
Mode(s)Single-player

X-treme was conceived as a side-scrolling platform game for the Sega Genesis to succeed Sonic & Knuckles (1994). Development shifted to the 32X and then the Saturn and Windows, and the game was redesigned as a 3D platform game for the 1996 holiday season. The plan was disrupted by company politics, an unfavorable visit by Sega of Japan executives, and obstacles using a game engine developed by Sonic Team for Nights into Dreams. Amid increasing pressure and declining morale, designer Chris Senn and programmer Chris Coffin became ill, prompting producer Mike Wallis to cancel the game. A film tie-in with Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer was also canceled.

In place of X-treme, Sega released a port of the Genesis game Sonic 3D Blast, but did not release an original 3D Sonic platform game until Sonic Adventure for the Dreamcast in 1998. The cancellation is considered an important factor in the Saturn's commercial failure, as it left the system with no original Sonic platform game. Elements similar to those in X-treme appeared in later games, such as Sonic Lost World (2013).