Sonic the Hedgehog is a video game for the 16-bit Sega Mega Drive console. First released in the U.K. (and U.S.) on the 23rd day of June 1991, this game marked the debut of Sonic the Hedgehog in any media and kickstarted the craze that would result in Sonic the Comic two years later. The game starred him as a titular character as he sped through Mobius freeing his friends from Badnik shells and stopping the diabolical mad scientist Doctor Ivo Robotnik from taking over the world.
Sonic the Hedgehog is the only playable character in the game and must fight against Doctor Robotnik, his arch-nemesis. Inside the Badniks are Sonic's friends who are being used as an organic battery. These consist of Flicky, Tux, Porker Lewis, Johnny Lightfoot, Joe Sushi, Sally Acorn and Chirps.
- Buzz Bomber
- Moto Bug
- Bat Brain
- Ball Hog
Since Sonic the Hedgehog was released two years prior to Issue 1, there was no direct adaptation of the game as a story. Instead, many aspects of the game were introduced into several stories, the most notable being Sonic and Robotnik themselves. Rabbits and pigs released from Badniks would soon become Johnny and Porker, two important members of the Freedom Fighters. Other animals released from Badniks would be featured as background characters. Power Rings were initially scattered about Mobius but were mostly collected by Robotnik. Springs appeared sparingly while the iconic loops are sometimes featured in Zones but rarely travelled in.
A form of adaptation occurred in Issue 26, when a Sonic's World flasback saw the Kintobor Computer mention the events of the game. After the creation of Robotnik, Sonic was required to travel South Island and free his friends from Robotnik's control.
The Green Hill Zone was the main base of operations for Sonic and his friends until they all left for the Emerald Hill Zone. The Marble Zone appeared a couple of times, largely resembling the game's rendition. The Labyrinth Zone was originally depicted as a series of tunnels but would eventually become more like the ruins seen in the game. Scrap Brain was seen once as a place of industry that Robotnik continued to use even after the game. Outside of the flashback story, the Starlight Zone was only seen briefly in other story, while the Spring Yard Zone didn't even get a mention until Sonic the Comic Online (although it was the location of a story in The Official Sonic the Hedgehog Yearbooks.
The Chaos Emeralds would eventually become seven (and then fourteen before turning seven once more), but were kept in North Cave rather than the Special Zone. South Island also extended further than suggested boundaries in the game, also holding many of the Hill Zones.