The once long-elusive SegaSonic Cosmo Fighter Galaxy Patrol has finally been found, dumped, released, signed, sealed, delivered by the good folks of the Dumping Union, a group dedicated to preserving old arcade games that may have otherwise been lost to time. Cosmo Fighter was released in celebration of MAME, a notorious emulator that aims to recreate the hardware of thousands of arcade titles, which turned twenty years old on February 5th. An entire playthrough was uploaded to YouTube by ashthedragon, as seen above. If we’re doing our math correctly, every known, officially released Sonic game has been dumped as of this release, meaning all that’s left are prototypes/tech demos and any rare unreleased games.
Recently, Waku Waku Sonic Patrol Car finally made its way onto MAME thanks to the work and funds of some pretty cool individuals. I ended the article with a little bit of a rib saying that SegaSonic Popcorn Shop should be the next game dumped.
Now that one can be marked off the list because it too has now been dumped and should be hitting MAME. The main notable note is that this game also operates on MegaDrive-type hardware named the SEGA C2. It also curiously comes with an English switch, meaning there is a possibility the game came to the West in limited numbers, or at least was planned to.
You won’t find much of a game here since this was more a little video demo that played as the “player” waited for the selected popcorn to be finished. The cabinet did have button and a crank to distract the player, but it didn’t particularly matter if you played or not. Naturally, emulating it won’t yield much unless you have a microwave near your general vicinity and some flavoring agents (salt, butter or curry, if you want to keep the authenticity of the machine.)
But this could make for a neat arcade board to setup at home for the more dedicated.
The story is pretty simple: Sonic and Tails want popcorn, Eggman wants to bludgeon Sonic with a hammer (because that’s his way of saying he wants some too or something), Eggman steals popcorn as it pops, Sonic blows up the machine and roasts Eggman, because he’s a jerk and doesn’t share. Enjoy those calories.
So that now makes two of the rare three obscure arcade Sonic titles dumped and preserved on the Internet. That basically leaves the most obscure of them left: SegaSonic Cosmo Fighter Galaxy Patrol.
Much like with Waku Sonic, I encourage those that want to or are interested in arcade game preservation to look into sending in donations to the dumpers (as it’s usually not cheap to do this) or join up communities that specialize in preservation.
Full disclosure: I’m not taking any credit for this happening, but it does amuse me.
One of the few remaining Coelacanths in the Sonic series is coming to a PC near you soon. Waku Waku Sonic Patrol Car is a relatively obscure arcade title where the player drives in a car booth and assists a police clad Sonic. It’s also one of the earlier instances of a fully voiced Sonic early in the brand’s life, albeit in Japanese.
Sadly, it has been increasingly difficult to find a working machine in public, with one of the most recent reports being that some friends over at Sonic Paradise found the machine in a Spanish mall, albeit with a broken steering wheel.
Starting with the next release of MAME, you can enjoy this odd bit of Sonic history too, thanks to an effort to secure the board and the generous donations of many people. Further documentation about the game can be found here.
The video below, recorded by Gavin Hugh, shows one such working booth in Japan in 2012 and features game play. Using the steering wheel, the player drives through the busy city streets and avoids traffic until an encounter with Dr. Eggman happens. Regardless if you do well or nothing at all, you’ll reach the Eggman encounter and even if you beat him or not, the game is soon over.
No tickets are dispensed and the player is only awarded a score and a star ranking. It’s pretty basic as far as arcade games go, but that isn’t a big shock. It’s an attraction ride game for kids after all.
It’s not a unique game as there are many others with similar gameplay that remain undumped, but it is another obscure bit of Sonic history down. That doesn’t leave much left to dump, short of someone going crazy and finding/repairing a SegaSonic Popcorn Shop machine.
That said, if trying to preserve and dump old arcade boards interests you, definitely explore MAMEWorld and other preservation and documentation groups.