don't click here

SAGE 2022 - Demo Sonic X-Treme (SEGA Saturn)

Overview

The latest entry in the numerous Sonic X-Treme fan recreations, this one attempts to bring together levels (with fisheye effect), bosses, menus, smooth gameplay and fun gimmicks into a single package - but is also created for none other than the system that the original game was slated to be released on in 1996 - the SEGA Saturn!

FEATURES
  • 4 colorful main levels, plus 1 boss level
  • Fun interactive levels and gimmicks
  • Traditional Sonic X-Treme platforming as you know it
  • Fisheye/reflex lens (can be toggled in options)
  • Switch between Sonic sprites, Project Condor model, or Jam/R model in options (affects boss level only)
  • 2-player co-op (plug another controller into port 2 while in-game to activate)
  • World rotation (press C while in-game to toggle on/off)
  • Supports the 3D Control Pad
  • Path mechanics
WAYS TO PLAY
Download a program that can burn a disc image file to a blank CD-R (for example, imgburn).
Run it and select sonic-xtreme.cue as the source file, and select the destination drive containing an inserted blank CD-R.
For best results, it's often recommended to burn at the slowest speed that your drive and specific CD-R will allow.
Let the program burn the game to the CD; this could take a few minutes depending on the write speed.
When prompted, close down the program and eject the CD (and don't forget to label it).
Place the CD into your (modified!) SEGA Saturn. Then, boot the game as you would any other burned disc. Have fun!

This demo has been confirmed to run on PAL and NTSC-U model 2 systems. NTSC-J and/or model 1 Saturns should still work fine though.
Download a SEGA Saturn emulator of your choice and set it up (outside the scope of this quick guide, sorry).
For the best experience, it's strongly recommended to use Mednafen. While all aspects of the game run fine in Yabause/YabaSanshiro/Kronos, there are some glaring audio and visual issues that stem from incorrect emulation, not the game itself.
Because Mednafen is a command-line based program, you may want to use MedGUI Reborn, which provides an easier interface to set up Mednafen and run games through it.
Once your emulator of choice is set up, simply open sonic-xtreme.cue and the game should boot. Have fun!
KNOWN ISSUES
  • There are no kill planes. If you fall off, pause and restart the level.
  • Enemies don't move, attack nor hurt the player. You can destroy most enemies by jumping on them though.
  • Some level-specific gimmicks, such as moving platforms or water droplets, aren't functional yet.
  • Placid Plains still isn't a proper level beyond a path and some cacti on a flat ground.
  • There are framerate drops in vertex-heavy sections of certain levels. Although I've tried to keep the gameplay as fluid as possible when that happens, gamepad button input will sometimes not register. Sadly this is a problem with the input implementation in the SEGA libraries used in the framework.
  • As hinted earlier, Sonic will always use sprites in main levels regardless of Sonic type set in options. This is currently a technical limitation and may or may not be implemented in a future version, depending on optimizations and remaining resources left.
  • Load times are quite slow depending on your tolerance. This is currently due to many separate audio clips being loaded from the CD. In a future version, the clips will be packed into single audio banks, which should make loading much faster.
FAQ
Q: How do I get rid of the red (P2) Sonic on emulator?
A: This is usually caused by having the 2nd input pad enabled. When disabled, player 2's Sonic should disappear.

Q: Will you add the Spin Slash and Spin Dash to Sonic's moveset?
A: Yes, they're features I would also like to add at some point.

Q: Why did you do XYZ? You should probably remove/replace it, it's terrible. Maybe add in ABC too?
A: I hear you, and I totally appreciate that some design choices and features aren't everyone's cup of tea. I really try my best to balance what the community want and my own personal choices, but it's near-impossible to fulfill everyone's needs in the vanilla base game. That's what modding is there for.
And speaking of which, yes, totally feel free to mod the game if there were alternative basics like audio or sprites that you wanted to see instead of my provided choices, if you have the technical know-how to do so.

Q: Will you be continuing this, post-SAGE?
A: I hate to be yet another guy who doesn't finish an X-Treme fan project, but unfortunately nope. It was super fun to tinker around with the Saturn and finally get to grips with the hardware/software on the inside, but alas, I'm a modern developer at heart and it's super important for me to keep up with modern programming and tools, especially for university. So to put it simply, I just don't have the time to allocate to it anymore.
screenb3.png
screenb4.png

DOWNLOAD
On desktop view, the demo can always be found attached on the right hand side of this page. However, there's no simple way to grab it on mobile view, so a link to the latest version is also provided above.

Media

DEVELOPER INTERVIEW
Check out my exclusive developer interview with SHIRO! where I discuss some of the more technical, obscure details about the project in greater depth:

SAGE TEASER TRAILER

Updates

29th Aug 2022:
  • Submitted final build.

Credits

@Voxel - Game + framework code
SEGA/STI - Original X-Treme level assets (+ some assets from other Sonic games), SGL/SBL libraries
Thanks to various members of the SegaXtreme Discord for the occasional assistance.

See LICENSES.TXT on the game disc for open-source software acknowledgements.

Latest reviews

Kickstarter, Indiegogo, Patreon!
This project needs to be funded for a good, complete, digital release and... dare I say it? Homebrew physical release!
I'm sure if Voxel were to officially do a crowdfunding the money would be there, and would be there fast!

Voxel's work is really impressive, and despite the technical issues (being this a tech demo) I find myself turning on my Saturn to play it almost every day. I will proceed to give my personal feedback, starting with the negatives and ending with the positives, I think it's nicer than the other way around 🙂

💪
- I think the draw distance should be increased just a little bit more.
- The double jump fortunately saves your skin when falling off the edge in most cases, however I think the design of the original levels should be tweaked to discourage falling off in the first place.
- Personally I don't really like the idea of using assets from post Saturn games, such as sound effects, music or level concepts (such as Placid Plains). Although it is possible they're meant to be place-holders.
- The world rotation is not Voxel's idea, nor is the level design. As it stands it's a really cool gimmick, but it's not complemented by the level design, and it doesn't really do anything apart from putting the player in danger of falling off. I think Voxel should get rid of it, or tweak the level design in a way that takes advantage of the gimmick and makes it fun to explore. Although I can't imagine how long that would take!

👍
- The comparisons with the Unity project are inevitable, and I think both have their strengths and weaknesses. However there's something about how Voxel's game controls that feels so much better. I can't put my finger on it, and it might be just my personal opinion, but I find Sonic to be much more responsive. It'a joy to play.
- Unlike Unity, Voxel's Sonic doesn't die when he touches water. I think it should stay that way. It gives the player more freedom without the constant fear of falling in water and can potentially expand the exploration.
- The boss fight is amazing!
Last edited:
The Fan Game is great, however, this initial version have SOO MUCH GLITCHS, I literally managed to complete the Cristal Frost in FREAKING 30 SECONDS BECAUSE OF THE GLITCHS, but I know that when these bugs are fixed, the game will be perfect (This Review used Google Translate)
Playing this on my actual Saturn hardware is amazing! As a Sega kid growing up, and one of the few in my neighbourhood that stuck with sega through the Saturn era, I spent a lot of time drooling over magazine articles on sonic x-treme. Very disappointing when it ended up being cancelled.
It is incredible to get something very close
to what was shown in the original e3 videos and magazine articles, with fish eye lens, gravity rotation, and the original crazy level geometries. The engine is looking great with good frame rate on real hardware.
I really hope you can find the motivation to continue to work on this. Would be amazing for you to get a few more zones like galaxy fortress and red sands (both maps are in the latest sonic z-treme demo I think) into your game and get it as close to being a complete game as possible, with working badniks and level gimmicks etc.

If you’re looking for extra boss models to use, might I suggest using the Sonic R models. That game had saturn level low poly models for eggman in his eggmobile, eggrobo, metal knuckles and of course the tails doll which might all serve as boss enemies if you’ve run out of actual sonic x treme assets.

Anyway, great work, please keep it up!
  • Like
Reactions: F108_Star

Comments

OHHHHH THIS LOOKS SO SICK, AND IT'S ON REAL HARDWARE oh my god bruh hell yes

It really sucked watching XL2 slowly abandon Sonic Z-Treme, like don't get me wrong Hellslave looks rad as fuck and the technical prowess of the guy is insane to get something that nice running on Saturn with a stable framerate- but manchild brain like sonic
 
Hi, can you tell me what emulator as can't get any to run this game and is able to make an exe file of the game like you did with last Version like to see what new is including as alredy loving what your doing to make it feel classic.
 
For some reason I couldn't navigate the menu, so I couldn't select any level other than Jade Gully (playing using yabause btw) any idea how to fix this?
 
Hi, can you tell me what emulator as can't get any to run this game and is able to make an exe file of the game like you did with last Version like to see what new is including as alredy loving what your doing to make it feel classic.
Hi, sorry to hear you're having problems. Which emulator have you tried? Yabause/Kronos/YabaSanshiro/Mednafen should all able to run it fine. I haven't made an exe/PC version of this project before sorry, are you thinking of something else?

For some reason I couldn't navigate the menu, so I couldn't select any level other than Jade Gully (playing using yabause btw) any idea how to fix this?
Hi, I'd recommend checking if your input settings are okay. Do other Saturn games respond to dpad input okay for you?
 
Alright, this is incredible, so I'm gonna do a big in-depth review/suggestions down here so you [hopefully we] can make this as good as it can be.

Played on a real Japanese Saturn console, using a Pseudo Saturn cartridge

Praise:

That is a FANCY ass title screen OOO I love it

SOMEONE'S FINALLY USING THE REAL MUSIC FOR JADE GULLY AND NOT SPACE QUEENS OR QUARTZ QUADRANT

THE LITTLE ORB GUYS AT THE END OF THE STAGE [I forgot what they were gonna be called]

Having a grace period of like a full second to be able to jump after running off a platform is invaluable in a platformer this fast with such a zoomed in camera, veri naise :emoji_thumbsup:

The Fang fight is insanely cool, all his animations and patterns and attacks, I'm surprised you could keep the frame rate so high. It was genius using one VDP to render the flat arena and then the other to render Fang's awesome model and the treehouses in the background.

Suggestions:


The stage select is SUPER unresponsive, probably due to the FMVs of the stages running in the background. It's a cool concept but the Saturn just can't handle it, maybe replace with an image of concept art of each stage when you select it in the background? Or maybe a scrolling checkerboard background.

Maybe have the sun flare off by default, it's distracting and probably uses extra processing power

Controls become unresponsive when the frame rate drops, meaning the game logic runs at the real frame rate. Having the game logic run at 60fps or tied to a virtual frame rate could fix this issue. Otherwise you might just have to make the stages barren of unneeded objects like the Bonus Stage, since the Bonus Stage runs SUPER smooth and holds at 30 almost the whole time.

You should use more retro sound effects and jingles, it's jarring to hear SA2 or Generations SFX play when everything else is so 1998.

Maybe try using Virtua Cop's SEGA Graphics Library to reduce poly drop out?

Sonic's acceleration feels too fast in the main levels while his top speed feels too low in the boss stage

Slowly walking around the edges of platforms to rotate gravity feels unintuitive and janky. Maybe instead of using the C button to toggle gravity switching, you could hold L or R and then whenever you run over the right or left edge of a platform, gravity could switch, like gluing you to the floor or like the Spike Wisp. Then releasing the L or R button would return gravity to it's normal direction. Additionally, a timer for gravity switching, or only being able to switch gravity in certain areas, would do a lot to help with balancing, as in Jade Gully you can just run up to the series of platforms in front of you, gravity switch -90 degrees, and jump onto the wall that leads to the Auto Path switch, to speedrun the stage super fast.

'GET READY' screen for the boss needs a cooler font, the one you're using looks too fancy, like something out of NiGHTS

Fang's patterns are difficult to figure out, I still haven't beaten him. I assume he becomes vulnerable for like a second after his horizontal tail swipe, just like his vertical tail swipe, but he's in that state for such a short time, and you can't be up close to him or he'll go full auto on your ass, so I can't figure out if you can damage him then. And since all he does is slide and horizontal swipe after the 3rd hit, I straight up can't beat him. There are also way too few rings in the arena, which wouldn't be an issue in traditional Sonic gameplay, but you can't pick your rings back up here so you just have to be super conservative and careful. The hitboxes for his horizontal tail swipe attack and the shockwaves from his bombs go out WAY further than the models for the attacks, so you could be like 6 feet from a tail swipe wave or a shockwave and get hit. His full auto rapid fire attack is a great way from discouraging players to try to hit him when he's invulnerable, a great way to keep them away from him until he does an attack that makes him vulnerable and then having to run up and hit him, but the full auto attack shouldn't take all your rings, it's just too punishing. Maybe have it either just harmlessly throw you back, or take off one ring at a time like the individual bullets in SA2 or Sonic 06

The stage music for Jade Gully, Bonus Stage, and Boss need to be looped properly, which I can actually help with since I used to make music mods for Sonic games. If the file types you're using can be edited in Audacity, I can help with basic audio stuff a bit.

Stuff you probably already know:


Only runs on real hardware when using the JHL loader, the other one just gives you a black screen

It actually feels better to play with a dpad in the normal stages and the analog stick in the bosses, which is interesting...

Thin horizontal flickering lines while on Jade Gully, might only appear on real hardware

1up orb can't be collected, but if you're gonna keep the boss fights as hard as Fang, maybe the game should just have infinite lives

2D objects with alpha transparency being close to the camera causes mad frame drops, like the spinning trees in Jade Gully

"Pedal" platforms in Crystal Frost should work like the see-saws in Wacky Workbench

Sonic's idle animation seems to play a bit too fast, looks like he's out of breath

Auto Paths in Crystal Frost don't spawn

...is Crystal Frost even completeable?

SAGE logo screen is too loud

2nd Auto Path switch in Jade Gully, the one that's supposed to take you to the goal, doesn't work

Victory theme is too loud

Start of the SAGE screen and Stage Select audio peak the audio for like a quarter of a second, like an unintentional jumpscare

Bonus Stage's background doesn't loop properly.

Sonic's shadow on the ground when gravity is rotated 90 degrees is upside down. Like if you were looking at the stage from the normal gravity perspective, if Sonic was standing on the side of a platform and his head was on the right and his feet were on the platform to our left, his shadow would have his head on the left and his feet facing right.

placid plains more like flaccid painis lol haha kek lol lmao

AND FINALLY, it might be a good idea to get in contact with XL2 of Sonic Z-Treme and Hellslave, as well as ShadowJackall of Sonic Ringworlds, since their own knowledge and techniques regarding the Saturn could be a massive help.
 
For some reason I couldn't navigate the menu, so I couldn't select any level other than Jade Gully (playing using yabause btw) any idea how to fix this?
That's just unresponsive controls, likely due to the videos of the stages in the back. Hit up or down a few times to try to move the cursor, you might have to mash the direction. ALSO IMPORTANT: you can only select a stage with the dpad, NOT the analog stick
 
Excellent! Really excellent!
I know it's not complete and a bit glitchy here and there, but I dig how authentic this feels.
I immediately burned a copy on CDR and tried it on my Saturn, played it with my Retro Fighters BrawlerGen pad (so I can confirm the analog stick with this controller works as well).
The Fang fight is the highlight here! But I like seeing these environments being recreated!
For this version of Xtreme (as well as Ztreme before), I think we should take some notes from Bug! and Bug Too! which are pretty similar games actually released on Saturn hardware, that is: set a decent draw distance, use invisible walls on tiny paths to avoid death by jumping off the level.
All in all, this year's favorite for me, for sure.
 
At first glance, everyone thinks that finally Sonic Extreme can be played on Sega Saturn hurrah, but alas there are a lot of bugs and jambs, red Sonics constantly appear here, the physics is just disgusting, you can only die in a boss battle and the boss himself is too complicated!

In short, I am disappointed, you will make and correct all the mistakes and maybe the opinion will change in a different way, but so far I did not like it😫
 
At first glance, everyone thinks that finally Sonic Extreme can be played on Sega Saturn hurrah, but alas there are a lot of bugs and jambs, red Sonics constantly appear here, the physics is just disgusting, you can only die in a boss battle and the boss himself is too complicated!

In short, I am disappointed, you will make and correct all the mistakes and maybe the opinion will change in a different way, but so far I did not like it😫
I know the majority of sonic fans are ungrateful, but this just takes the cake. Why do you expect AAA levels of quality over a single-dev tech demo? I absolutely urge you to reconsider your opinion. If the boot was on the other foot and you knew how long and hard the dev process was for this then I assure you, you wouldn't say all that hurtful stuff. Sure, fixes are coming, but there were so many better ways you could have worded your comment rather than coming off as so rude and offensive about it.
 
Last edited:
I know the majority of sonic fans are ungrateful, but this just takes the cake. Why do you expect AAA levels of quality over a single-dev tech demo? I absolutely urge you to reconsider your opinion. If the boot was on the other foot and you knew how long and hard the dev process was for this then I assure you, you wouldn't say all that hurtful stuff. Sure, fixes are coming, but there were so many better ways you could have worded your comment rather than coming off as so rude and offensive about it.
It's important to remember that even though you and me and a ton of other Sonic fans are adults, a large portion of this fanbase is still kids. I doubt he understands how complicated and time-consuming Saturn development is, or game dev in general.
Don't take this "criticism" to heart, it means about as much as begging for an Android port.
 
For every kid out there who feels like that, there's gotta be an adult like me who thought this tech demo was a dream come true!
 
Wow! I can say I'm very impressed! That boss battle was really something, definitely the highlight. I read some others say it was hard and I agree but I think that's a great thing. Hard but mostly fair. Took I think four tries to beat him, maybe five. So it wasn't like he was egregiously way too hard in my mind. The background and everything looked so good in that particular level. Camera was almost perfect. Dodging his ramming slide attack feels great! Running from the bullets feels just as cool! His attacks were challenging to avoid, but once you learn how do it you can beat him, just like a good boss battle should be. I especially had trouble with the part where he launches "bombs" in the air that have a shock wave. Just keep moving and jumping over the shock wave, and jump early. The first orange "shock wave" attack seemed to hit a little early too, meaning that I had to jump earlier than it appeared I should to avoid it.. The vertical tail wagging shockwave never came close to hitting me. Being strategic with rings is important to last the whole fight, collecting one or two at a time is the way to go. There were some grey pillars moving in the stage that shouldn't have been. A little polish and this thing would be perfect. I would love to play a few more bosses in this style, Metal Sonic, Eggman Robots, whatever.

I liked that the fish-eye could be turned off as I'm not really a fan, but of course it has to be there because that's a big part of sonic X-treme. The levels were an excellent recreation of the feel of what I've seen of the original, and this was no small undertaking. That said I get lost quite a bit and wish there was even just a little more draw distance to get a better bearing on surroundings, or a clearer path/directional sesnse of where to go(no real idea how to do that lol). Camera rotate a la sonic Z-treme would also be great. A double jump gets you far enough from the ground that it disappears. Obviously the Saturn has its limitations, who knows how much is even possible on this system. I spent a lot of time in the bonus stage before I thought to jump to the right as far as I could and eventually found the exit. But the bonus stage has a cool scheme and color setup and was fun to explore. I really liked the looping path in placid plains, feels very sonic when it whips you around. There's a wall climbing trick (just jump and push towards any wall). Its a ton of fun just to run around and mess around in these levels. Messing around with gravity is a blast, but of course makes everything very easy to speedrun. The sonic model looks great and the enemy models look good too.

Can't wait to see a few more enemies moving around. It controls very well with the analog controller in all stages. The music is very good. The menus could be cleaned up and rebooting the game when you change an option is a small inconvenience. There were some flickering lines on a real saturn as someone else mentioned. I'd love to see this thing polished up a little bit more, but its quite the accomplishment already at this point. Loading times are no big deal its a saturn game. I understand that this was a one person job, I'll bet a team could really do some great work just optimizing things if thats the route someone takes things. In summary, I think its amazing and would love to see where it goes next.
 
I think Sonic needs to be faster, and the level design should be tailored for momentum based exploration. That and possibly more characters to play as. Those are my only gripes. I really liked the boss fight with Nack/Fang at the end! I really hope somebody can actually make this into a full-on game and fill the hole in our hearts with the missing sonic game people wanted on the saturn!!
 

Item information

Added by
Voxel
Views
19,795
Comments
15
Reviews
8
Last update
Rating
4.50 star(s) 8 ratings

Downloads

More in Fan Games

Share this item