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It’s rare that I become so nostalgic over a game I didn’t even grow up with, but that’s just how potent and amazing the Sonic CD intro is. I’ve always thought that it captures the greatest era of Sonic, with a design that makes him look young, spirited, and ready for adventure. It was a simpler time, when Sonic was dashing around unique planets before his 3D outings took him on regular adventures on Earth, and when his only objective was to stop the evil Dr. Robotnik (that’s right, Robotnik — not “Eggman”!)

Thanks to fans Tanks and Quazza from the Sonic Retro forums, Sonic CD’s animated opening looks more incredible than ever. The duo managed to clean up and upscale the video with AI technology, bringing it up to a gorgeous 720p version. A downloadable version is also available via Google Drive.

Of course, Sonic CD fans will know that the game also has a similarly impressive ending animation. Unfortunately, Tanks says that this may be more of a challenge to upscale. “Well sadly, despite being equally as amazing as the intro, the Mega Collection ending suffers heavily from temporal scanline blending, essentially ghosting and blending frames throughout the video.” He continues, “I’m not ruling out work being done on it (there’s a chance we can salvage it depending on what tools we bring in) but truth be told the most ideal solution would be a rescan of the original film master by SEGA/Toei.”

For now, I’m just thrilled to have a new definitive version of this great piece of animated history to revisit.

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Written by Reece Heather

A lifelong Nintendo fan and a longtime editor at Zelda Universe, Reece will forever be grateful that he somehow dodged the Naughty List of Christmas 1998, when Santa delivered the life-changing gift of a Nintendo 64 with Super Mario 64, Banjo-Kazooie, and Mario Kart 64. When he's not playing games, Reece is usually reading Punisher comics, delving helplessly into the weirdest depths of anime and manga, or spending time with his cocker spaniel Gracie -- the goodest girl ever!