I remember almost nothing about the Nintendo DS BioWare RPG Sonic Chronicles: The Dark Brotherhood — except that I hated it and thought it was a complete waste of time. The game received a mixed (though admittedly still decent) critical reception and was BioWare’s worst-reviewed game until similar-scoring Mass Effect: Andromeda and worse-scoring Anthem came along. Nonetheless, Sonic Chronicles: The Dark Brotherhood was made by passionate people who cared about it, and animation expert Jonathan Cooper has shared a cut intro cinematic for the game that has never been seen in full before until now.
Sega ultimately decided to cut the animated intro cinematic from Sonic Chronicles: The Dark Brotherhood and apply its song to a gameplay reel instead, and frankly, I understand why it made that decision. Although the animation is indisputably of high quality, the subject matter has nothing to do with the narrative of the game; it’s just Sonic the Hedgehog and Eggman duking it out as usual. Also, Sonic and Eggman look pretty off-model sometimes, which wouldn’t bother most people but may bother Sega as the IP owner looking to a cultivate a specific image. (Eggman’s teeth will haunt our dreams now.)
In any case, Cooper says this cut Sonic Chronicles: The Dark Brotherhood cinematic intro was created by Lead Artist Joel MacMillan and Animator Nick DiLiberto, and now you can enjoy the fruits of their labor at last. It’s better late than never. And if you’re wondering how Sonic Chronicles currently fits into the greater Sonic canon, the answer is — it doesn’t. So you probably shouldn’t expect many nods to it in Ian Flynn’s script for Sonic Frontiers.
Sonic Chronicles (2008) unreleased 2D intro cinematic. This has never been shown before in its entirety. pic.twitter.com/T7wgxKqmb6
— Jonathan Cooper (@GameAnim) December 21, 2021
After this title, BioWare prototyped a Nintendo DS game called Mass Effect: Corsair, but it didn’t get far because the project was deemed to be not profitable enough.