UPDATE: Sonic CD Becomes Free-to-Play on iOS, Forces Users to Pay to Remove Ads

UPDATE: SEGA has reached out to us with their statement on the error, telling us that the issue has been resolved!

As part of a special promotion, Sonic CD is now free with ads (regularly priced at $2.99) from the App Store. For players who previously purchased Sonic CD, ads were mistakenly added to their game. This was not intended and the issue has now been resolved. Players will need to update to the latest version of Sonic CD (2.0.1) on the App Store. We apologize for the error.

Original story continues below.

“Trouble keeps you running faster, save the planet from… advertisers?” …I don’t think that’s how the original song went.

The 2011 remaster of Sonic CD brought on dual soundtrack options, widescreen 60 fps gameplay, and online leaderboards. Now, a 2016 update has made the game free to play on Apple devices, with a $1.99 in-app purchase removing all pesky advertising. Unfortunately, this change also inadvertently and mistakenly applies to those who have previously purchased the game at face value on the Apple App Store.

Christian Whitehead, who developed the updated version of Sonic CD, denied any involvement of this change on Twitter, as he is currently busy working on Sonic Mania. However, SEGA’s mobile team is aware of the problem, with Sonic social media manager Aaron Webber noting that those who previously paid for the game should not be seeing any ads. The company is currently looking into a solution.


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Unparalleled Canadian greatness! Jeffrey is a writer for TSS and Gamnesia, a pianist obsessed with video game music, and a recent university graduate majoring in Communications. Loves all things Sonic and Nintendo to a fault.


  1. seems like a simple mistake to me. Seems perfect because I have been wanting to play it but did not want to pay for it. I can handle ads tbh

  2. What’s the point of making it free to play then making people pay to remove ads? I could’ve just kept it as a pay to play game with no ads for that.

  3. Good thing I bought CD on my Ps3 xD

    Dont ruin it Sega. You had us with all the good things you were doing to Sonic but this wasnt a good idea

    I personally found it bizzare and a little annoying but i have no problem with it

    Its free Sonic CD for crying out loud! But this does show that Sega is still making money hungry, bad mistakes. It comforts me that Christian Whitehead had no involvement in this tho.

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