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Proto:Sonic Heroes/E3 2003 prototype

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This is a sub-page of Proto:Sonic Heroes.

Hiddenpalace.org logo.png  This prototype is documented on Hidden Palace.

This article is a work in progress.
...Well, all the articles here are, in a way. But this one moreso, and the article may contain incomplete information and editor's notes.
Careful, you'll lose an eye.
This page or section needs more images.
There's a whole lotta words here, but not enough pictures. Please fix this.
To do:
  • About everything. For one, the Xbox demo has some files that the GameCube version doesn't and vise-versa.
  • Demo videos for Seaside Hill and Rail Canyon.
  • More object differences.
  • Find any technical differences.
SonicHeroes E3 TitleScreen (GameCube).png

This prototype of Sonic Heroes was displayed during E3 2003. It was recovered in 2014 and dumped in 2016, in a joint effort between English fansite Sonic Retro and Spanish fansite Sonic Paradise. This build is different in that one was made for each of the three consoles, however only the Xbox and GameCube versions are available.


Level Differences
There were some changes to the levels that were seen in later builds, but redone before the final version.
Unused Content
2D artwork from Sonic Adventure 2, and...a Sonic X logo?

Debug Modes

Debug Displays

Camera Info

Action Replay code
041EA220 00000001

This will enable a debug display during gameplay.

General Differences

Startup Screen

  • The Dolby Digital Pro Logic Pro II logo is nowhere to be found.
  • On the startup screen, you can skip all until the stage select screen. This feature was completely disabled in the final.
  • There's no opening cinematic.


To do:
Screenshots for the spheres bug comparison for whenever progressive scan mode is turned on or off, despite going unused.
  • The spheres around the "?" hints don't display if the game is in progressive scan mode.

Reseting the game will result in a crash on the faded Sega logo screen.

Graphical Differences


E3 2003/Final (Windows) Final (Console)
SonicHeroesE3-Sega.png SonicHeroesFinal-Sega.png

The Sega logo lacks "Presented by". For whatever reason, this was eventually used for the Windows version.

Sonic Team

E3 2003 Final
SonicHeroesE3-SonicTeam.png SonicHeroesFinal-SonicTeam.png

There's no "Created by" for the Sonic Team Logo.


E3 2003 Final
SonicHeroesE3-ADX.png SonicHeroesFinal-ADX.png

The ADX logo is present, but it lacks Sofdec.

Logo/Title Screen

E3 2003 (GameCube) Final (GameCube)
SonicHeroes E3 TitleScreen (GameCube).png SonicHeroesFinal-TitleScreen (GameCube).png

One of the most notable differences from the final is the title screen:

  • The background is completely different.
  • The game's logo has a different color for the trademark symbol, in which is white instead of black.
  • In the previous two 3D Sonic games, the "PRESS START BUTTON" graphic was used for the title screen. The final version changes it to just be "Press START".
  • The layouts are placed differently.
  • The GameCube version lacks "Licensed by Nintendo".

This is basically identical to the 10.8 prototype, but without the "E3 Version" logo for obvious reasons.

Menu (Stage Select)

E3 2003 Final
SonicHeroes E3Demo StageSelect.png SonicHeroes Final StageSelect.png

Only two stages are available from the start: "Easy", which is Seaside Hill and "Hard", which is Rail Canyon. The "Stage Select" graphic is also different.

(Source: Sonic Retro)

Loading Screen

E3 2003 Final
SonicHeroesE3Demo-LoadingScreen.png SonicHeroesFinal-LoadingScreen.png

Instead of featuring title cards, the three team rings on the bottom-right corner is seen, which is used in the final version for whenever you boot up the game (although without any spinning animations).


To do:
Crop these two images on the wiki using the CSS image crop template correctly to just show the HUD.
E3 2003 Final
SonicHeroesE3Demo CharacterIcons.png SonicHeroesFinal CharacterIcons.png

Power levels aren't displayed on the character icons and there's no Team Blast.

Hint Box

Text & Hint Differences
With no voice-overs at the time, the game explains how these work instead.
E3 2003 Final
SonicHeroesE3-HintBox.png SonicHeroesFinal-HintBox.png

Every hint rings show a blue semi-transparent rectangle surrounding the text.

Gameplay Differences


E3 2003 Final
SonicHeroesE3 SpeedShoes-Sonic.png SonicHeroesFinal LevelUp-Sonic.png
SonicHeroesE3 20Rings-Tails.png SonicHeroesFinal LevelUp-Tails.png
SonicHeroesE3 Shield-Knuckles.png SonicHeroesFinal LevelUp-Knuckles.png

Instead of getting a level up when passing a checkpoint, you'll get an item depending on which character you're currently playing as. Sonic gets speed shoes, Tails gets 20 Rings, and Knuckles gets a shield.

Object Differences

Floating Item Box

E3 2003 Final
SonicHeroesE3-FloatingItemBox.png SonicHeroesFinal-FloatingItemBox.png

The Floating Item Boxes are a lot smaller compared to the final.

Audio Differences


A total of three stage tracks exist in this build. Interestingly, Sea Gate's music is given the filename STG02 in this build, suggesting it may have been intended for Ocean Palace at this point in development. In the final, it was moved to the file as STG29, which is the last normal stage music in the game. There are also two themes used for the title screen, but the tracks have been finalized and aren't covered here.

Name E3 2003 Final Notes
Seaside Hill
Missing most of the drums, guitar is mixed slightly different.
Sea Gate
Ditto. Unused, as you cannot access Sea Gate in this build. In addition, there's no music in Ocean Palace.
Rail Canyon
Different drums.
  • The Speed Up track doesn't exist in this build, so the stage music continues to play instead. It's also missing the "Round Clear" track from Sonic Adventure 2.


To do:
Rip all Sonic, Tails, and Knuckles' voice clips that are different in this build and compare it to the final.

At this point of development, almost no voice clips are present in this build (as Japanese voice acting was recorded between July 11-20[1]), but there's still changes to note about:

Sonic, Tails, and Knuckles' death voice clips (when getting hit by an enemy with zero Rings) are very different compared to the final.

Character E3 2003 Final Transcript Notes
<-- A very different line.
<-- A completely different scream.
<-- Similar to Sonic above.
  • The voice clip for Tails' Thunder Shoot is different.

"Coming Soon!" Screen

Beating either stages or getting a game over will give you the "Coming Soon!" screen and take you back to the title screen. There are other ways to see this:

  • Likely for demo purposes, the timer counts down for some reason, limiting gameplay sessions to just be 10 minutes.
  • The game will automatically reset after the player is inactive for a short while.