Sonic 1 Out Now on iPhone: Tails & Knuckles Playable

Well this came out of nowhere! Yesterday we told you how the 3DS version of Sonic 1 was released in Japan, in the last hour without any announcement, the ‘Stealth-Tax’ version of Sonic 1 for iOS has been released and it contains two big surprises!


Tails and Knuckles are now playable! Confirmed by both the product description and official screens on the product page, Tails and Knuckles can be unlocked giving you a completely new playing experience.

Also included are time trial leaderboards and a remastered soundtrack. If you already own the game on iOS you can upgrade for free, however, the product description warns that when you upgrade your old saves will no longer work. If you’ve never bought this game before, it costs £1.99 from the iTunes store.


SSMB user Super Spindash was kind enough to upload a short video of the game, so if you want to see and hear what it’s like, check it out.

Download from here. US & Canada release is May 16th.
Thanks to Mark1 for the heads up.

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  1. That’s kinda neat! Like with Sonic CD! I wish they’d release this version on steam also, as an upgrade to the SEGA classics version at least.


    1. Hold up now. I just checked the app store and the old version of Sonic one is still there with no sign of the new version. Plus, all the links you have send me to Sonic 4 episode II instead of Sonic the hedgehog. Was it removed from the app store or something?

      1. All the links work fine for me. I went to the UK store so it might be re-directing you based on region.

        1. It was doing that actually, but it is okay now. I suppose us Americans had to wait until today to get it, but it really wasn’t a painful wait at all. Thanks for the news though! 😉

    1. Are they not? Hmmm I was under the impression they were… Oh well I’ll look into that.

  3. Pretty sure Tails and Knuckles aren’t unlockable from the start. Won’t let me at-least.

    1. All the links work fine for me.

      They’re links to the UK store since thats where the game is currently live, if you live outside the UK region your computer might be re-directing you to a different store and different product.

    2. The redirection of the links are based on Region. I’m assuming that if you are using a North American proxy it will send you to the S4 Ep 2 page.

  4. That’s cool iOS Sonic the Hedgehog tails and Knuckles not sega genesis only for Apple IPod touch.then IPad and I phone

  5. after completing the game once, you unlock Tails Solo and Sonic + Tails a la Sonic 2

  6. Just bought it, but it’s still the old version (I can definitely tell; music, framerate, everything is pretty crappy compared to the original). Is the new version not out in the U.S. yet?
    Thanks for the update though; it’s finally good to hear some Sonic-related news, been a bit of a dry-spell

      1. Awesome! 16th happens to be my birthday (last year got Sonic 4 Ep.2 on it!), so perfect timing! I think I know the answer to this question, but I’m assuming my iPhone will just notify me when the update is available and then it’ll be automatically updated to the new version.
        So excited to finally play Sonic 1 as Knuckles!

  7. Tails and Knuckles playable? Delicious! But i’m not that surprised. This port was done by the same guys who remade Sonic CD and Stealth who made a proof of concept Sonic 1 GBA port “Which is pretty much what this port is btw” and one of the geniuses behind Sonic Megamix. Which makes me wonder!!!

    1. I really want to see this on consoles.

      I can stay satisfied with fan-hacks though, if this doesn’t come to consoles (only way I can buy). I wonder how the leaderboards incorporate other characters?

      1. Yeah playing sonic on IOS with touch screen controls just sucks.

        So Stealth tax, guessing they used Stealth’s knuckles in sonic 1 and taxman’s engine? Anything else either of the two directly contributed?

  8. Is that uncompressed audio? Full quality samples? WOW! I need to get my hands on that somehow!
    Apparently, if the fan base asks enough, there could be a console version. COME ON GUYS! LET’S MAKE IT HAPPEN!! We need a high quality Sonic 1, 2 & 3&K to play!

  9. Still not showing up here in sunny So Cal. Maybe it’s a Thursday thing and it has to show up at midnight in your time zone?

  10. Loving the update. So many new features they added that could of been done a few years ago

  11. I’m loving this little update! It runs so much smoother than the previous version and we get a few new extras, like Tails and Knuckles and a crap tone of Achievements! I really hope they do a Console release for XBLA and PSN! 😀

  12. This sounds amazing. The only thing it lacks… is BUTTONS. Come on SEGA, you have to put this on home consoles!

    1. You just brought up a good point… I sure hope that there is a debug mode in this version. There was one in Sonic CD IOS, but there wasn’t a “b” button or a “c” button so it was practically useless. I hope the guys who made this realized that error on Sonic CD and fixed it here. But still, they proved themselves enough by introducing the extra characters into this game.

    2. You just brought up a good point… I sure hope that there is a debug mode in this version. There was one in Sonic CD IOS, but there wasn’t a “b” button or a “c” button so it was practically useless. I hope the guys who made this realized that error on Sonic CD and fixed it here. But still, they proved themselves enough by introducing the extra characters into this game.

    3. Debug does work in this game and so does the code for Super Sonic.
      on “no save” mode – as the S.E.G.A comes up, tap the letters in order and then press the screen with 2 fingers when prompted – you’ll get to the level select/modification menu.


  13. Frig man. I really didn’t care about this release before today. Another Sonic 1 port? Kill me. But, now it’s got all this fun, cool stuff. STEAM PLZ.

    1. Beat the game with Sonic to unlock Tails. You also can play as Sonic with Tails following you. I don’t know how to get Knuckles. I tried beating it with Tails, but that did not unlock Knuckles. You probably have to get all the emeralds or something.

      1. Yes,i confirm that.I beat the game with all the emeralds and i get all unlockeable characters 😀

      2. Simply beat the game with all chaos emeralds to get Knuckles. I did it with Tails because his flight made Marble Zone much more bearable and there’s a massive shortcut you can access easier in Labyrinth Zone. I think it works with any character as well.

  14. Okay, lets add up all this material we have here. These developers made an amazing off the walls port of Sonic CD to the smart phones, they just released an astounding port of Sonic 1 to IOS devices (and probably other smart phones in the future, but maybe not), and they confirmed that they will be doing the same thing with Sonic 2 soon. The only thing this can possibly add up to is that they can possibly and finally make a mobile version of Sonic 3 & Sonic and Knuckles. These guys really have shown what they can do and I believe they can jump the hurdle of porting Sonic 3 and Sonic and Knuckles to smart phone, and without a doubt they will include the whole lock-on feature thing so we can also get Sonic 3 & Knuckles! (and maybe even blue sphere, but that isn’t required in my book.) Who agrees with me? It is about time that we get a portable version of Sonic 3 & Knuckles! 😀

  15. All I have to say about this update is, WOW! They completely blew past my expectations, this update makes the game look so much better! I love the option to change box art and the addition of Tails and Knuckles is excellent. Multiple save slots is a nice bonus too. A little bit more than wow but still, a great update. Bravo Sega!

  16. Not to mention time attack, and ability to change the box art.
    These guys should make a new sonic game.

  17. If this version of the game makes it to Wii U eShop, I’m sold! Hope there is a discount for owning the Wii Virtual Console version. And another thing, when they were testing out the lock-on technology for Sonic and Knuckles (aka Sonic 3 and Knuckles part 2), they tried to let Knuckles be playable in Sonic 1, but due to color problems, they made Blue Sphere instead. So other than that hack game, fans are finally getting a chance to play as Knuckles in Sonic 1, cool!

  18. Is anyone else having a bizarre glitch where Knuckles dies during the credits (keeps hitting spikes during the labyrinth zone demo)?

    1. yeah i am having the same glitch… and it keeps going until somehow all ur lives are wiped out, causing a game over.. and if thats not enough.. it keeps going until it wipes ur continues out as well LMAO.. better let taxman know about that lol

    2. Yeah, I keep getting that too! I had one life and while the credits I got a game over. I tried to play again, but the characters would not load and it made the game literally not playable. I wrote an email to Christian Whitehead about it.

      Sort of wanna call it the Knuckles never wins glitch.

  19. do you guys think that drx or puto is givin credit for Tails being in Sonic 1? Considering that this version of Sonic 1 is done by Stealth-Taxman and Knuckles in Sonic 1 was also by Stealth.

  20. Anyone else findingt he special stages WAY more tricky than in the mega drive version… seems to spin way way way too fast! makes the game more challenging, but bloody hell!

  21. thanks to the “Super” cheat code you can imput on the “no save” level select – it is possible to play as SUPER SONIC, SUPER TAILS AND HYPER KNUCKLES! – Yes! im “super” serious about this :3
    they really went all out to make this game amazing – best port ever!

    and i can change the boxart to the UK version :3 woo ~
    (japan and europe called it the megadrive but america had to be different and call it the genesis… why?)

  22. This enhanced port is the third Smartphone-exclusive Sonic we get in a row. It feels like a betrayal, considering that the original game was a console game, and the series originated and had the most success in consoles. I’m so sick of Smartphones and casual gaming ruining everything.

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