Why Bioware’s Sonic RPG Sequel Never Got Made

Despite the fame and popularity of both the studio and the IP in question, not everyone knows that Bioware developed a Sonic RPG prior to them being acquired by EA, Sonic Chronicles for the Nintendo DS, and it was recently detailed in a DidYouKnowGaming video that both Bioware and SEGA were down for a sequel, but it was ultimately canceled for a surprising reason: SEGA was sued for copyright infringement.

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The original Sonic Chronicles, released in 2008, was pretty decently received, and actually sold quite well (about a million copies). The partnership was deemed a success by both parties, and Bioware even had a story outline for the game’s sequel, however, prior to any sort of actual production phase, SEGA was sued by Ken Penders, a Sonic The Hedgehog comic book writer who claimed that the characters featured in Chronicles were too similar to the ones he created in his comic book series.

You may be quick to dismiss the matter, because, of course, SEGA, being the owner of the Sonic IP, has the rights to anything created within its universe. But it apparently wasn’t that simple in court. Due to some unspecified irregularities in Penders’ contract, SEGA was unable to convince a judge of its case, at least not right away, so the lore of Sonic Chronicles was temporarily unusable, and, following the acquisition of Bioware by EA, the sequel was forgotten.

The supposed IP infringement Penders claimed occurred was mostly focused on the antagonists of Sonic Chronicles, the Nocturnus Clan. Penders alleged that the clan was too similar visually and conceptually to his design of the Dark Legion, an enemy faction in the comic book series. He also claimed a similarity between Shade, an echidna character from Chronicles, and Knuckles’ comic book girlfriend, Julie-Su.

DidYouKnowGaming spoke to Miles Holmes, Sonic Chronicles’ lead designer, who revealed the sequel’s never-before-heard plot. Following the first title’s cliffhanger ending, the cast would return to their dimension to see a world completely taken over by Eggman. The game would have revolved around freeing different people around the world in order to build a super army to take Eggman out, but then, the cosmic god from the first game, Argus, would show up, and Eggman and the Sonic crew would be forced to team up to take it out.

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