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Sonic the Hedgehog 3

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This page contains changes which are not marked for translation.

Other languages:
English • ‎한국어

Title Screen

Sonic the Hedgehog 3

Also known as: Baramdori Sonic 3 (KR)
Developers: Sonic Team, Sega Technical Institute
Publishers: Sega (JP/US/EU), Samsung (KR), Tec Toy (BR)
Platform: Genesis
Released in JP: May 27, 1994
Released in US: February 2, 1994
Released in EU: February 24, 1994
Released in KR: 1994
Released in BR: 1994


AreasIcon.png This game has unused areas.
CharacterIcon.png This game has unused playable characters.
CodeIcon.png This game has unused code.
EnemyIcon.png This game has unused enemies.
GraphicsIcon.png This game has unused graphics.
MusicIcon.png This game has unused music.
SoundIcon.png This game has unused sounds.
DebugIcon.png This game has debugging material.
SoundtestIcon.png This game has a hidden sound test.
LevelSelectIcon.png This game has a hidden level select.
RegionIcon.png This game has regional differences.


BugsIcon.png This game has a bugs page

Sonic the Hedgehog 3 is the third game in the 16-bit Sonic trilogy and the first game with the redheaded echidna, Knuckles. Originally one big game, Sonic 3 was split into two games due to time constraints and cartridge costs; the second half of the story is its direct sequel, Sonic & Knuckles.

Level Select/Debug Mode

There's some heritage here... and Mushroom Hill is named Mushroom Valley.

To access a level select and debug mode, press Up, Up, Down, Down, Up, Up, Up, Up after the SEGA logo screen fades to black and Sonic begins to move, but before the title screen appears (about 4.31 seconds after boot). You only have about 1.3 seconds to enter it, and due to this screen having an absolutely ridiculous number of lag frames, it may not always work; you'll hear the ring collection sound if you did it right. Alternatively, you can unlock the level select by these alternate methods:

  • You can access the leftover Sonic 2 Options menu (see below) and enter the Sonic 2 level select code in the sound test (19, 65, 09, 17).
  • You can also use Game Genie code AA6T-AAXC to access the level select.
  • If you are playing on a real Mega Drive/Genesis console and don't mind risking the long-term health of your console and cartridges, then another method is to load up Sonic 2, unlock its level select (19, 65, 09, 17 in the sound test), swap the cartridge with Sonic 3 without turning the power off, and then press Reset. This works because the RAM variable that unlocks the level select is preserved when you reset the console (Sonic 3 was built upon the Sonic 2 source code, and thus shares a number of RAM variables).

Level Select

To find the level select on the title screen, simply press Up to reveal "SOUND TEST" and press Start. To activate debug mode, select a file/level, hold A and press Start, and keep holding A until the level begins. You can also hold C and press Start to highlight high-priority background tiles (tiles that overlap Sonic and other sprites).

Debug Mode

While in debug mode, you have access to the following:

  • Invincibility
  • Infinite time
  • Debug coordinates (in place of score)
  • Sprite counter (in place of time)
  • Placement mode: Press B to enter placement mode, which allows you to move Sonic anywhere in the level with the D-Pad and place objects from a predefined list (not all objects may be available in a given level). In this mode:
    • Press A to move forward one object.
    • Hold A and press C to move backward one object.
    • Press C to place the object.
    • Press B again to return to normal gameplay.
  • Character animation viewer: hold C and press B to rapidly cycle through all available animation frames for the current character (pause the game and use frame advance to view individual frames). Press B again to return to normal gameplay.
  • Pause options:
    • Press A to go back to the level select.
    • Hold B to progress the game in slow motion.
    • Press C to advance one frame.

If you die, press B to enter placement mode, and then press B at a safe spot to revive yourself. However, trying to place an object in this death state will freeze the game. Additionally, do not enter debug mode at any point where Sonic's sprite rotates (such as while standing on the red-and-white cylinders in Carnival Night Zone) or the game will crash.

Secrets

The level select menu shows what the level order was at one point. The Sonic 3 Zones are in their normal order, but Flying Battery from Sonic & Knuckles is listed between Carnival Night and Ice Cap. Following Launch Base are Mushroom Valley (an early name for Mushroom Hill) and Sandopolis, but neither of those can be selected.

According to commentary from the Sonic Jam strategy guide, Ice Cap was meant to follow Flying Battery as Sonic was supposed to break down the door at the end of the latter Zone and use it as a snowboard. There's also a variety of unused songs, all from Sonic & Knuckles, in the sound test.

Furthermore, all the graphics here (including the level icons) are recycled from Sonic the Hedgehog 2, and the icons are shown in the Sonic 2 order, such as Emerald Hill's icon for Angel Island and Casino Night's icon for Carnival Night. Interestingly, the second "2P VS" entry shows the unused Hidden Palace icon.

Sonic 2 Menu Leftovers

Sonic2OptionsInSonic3.png

By setting the game's screen mode to $24, you can access the Sonic 2 options menu in Sonic 3! Alternatively, you can use the patch code FFF600:2400 or hack the menu back in yourself.

As all the options here are selectable normally through other means in Sonic 3, the only real benefit of this is entering the Sonic 2 level select code to access it in Sonic 3.

Sonic22PlayerScreenInSonic3.png

It's also possible to find the 2 Player Level Select from Sonic 2 using the patch code FFF600:1C00. However, selecting any of the zones on this screen will send you back to the title screen, so you can't really do anything with this menu.

Knuckles Leftovers

Some data for Knuckles as a playable character seems to still exist in the game. Game Genie codes ASCA-AAHC ASCA-BA9Y or Patch Code FFEF4C:0003 will allow you to "select" Knuckles as your character. You will play as Sonic, but have Knuckles' character select, continue icons, and "level-clearing" text. The end signpost will also feature Knuckles, though the image uses Sonic's blue palette, markers of the scores screen of Special Stages uses color palette to Knuckles. As you might expect, this code will save properly, allowing you to apply the code, create a save, then continue to use "Knuckles" even without the Game Genie. FFFA80:0101 is a patch code that makes a few bosses behave like Knuckles' versions: The Angel Island Act 1 fire breath boss shoots missiles, the Dr. Robotnik Hydrocity boss doesn't fly down when it creates the water spout , and upon defeat, the Launch Base Act 2 laser boss plays a broken version of Knuckles' post-Launch Base Act 2 bomb cut-scene when you defeat it. It appears to carry the garbled art that should be the bomb right out of the laser machine carcass. It also suggests that Knuckles was not meant to fight Big Arms at this point, and was meant to go straight to Mushroom Valley/Hill Zone. This could also mean that even Sonic and Tails were not meant to fight Big Arms as well. After this cut-scene plays, nothing else happens. If you do happen to wait long enough after the cut-scene, the game will crash for an unknown reason.

So, does this mean we can play as Knuckles without Lock-On? Sonic?! What the devil are you doing here?!

Bugs and oddities

  • The cutscene where Sonic arrives on Angel Island is corrupt and Sonic can fall into the ground and lose a life.
  • The Insta-Shield graphics disappear at times.
  • At the start of Ice Cap Act 1 the cutscene is the same as Tails'.
  • The Pit in the beginning of Ice Cap Act 1 does not work correctly and will cause you to lose a life when entering the loop point.
  • In Launch Base Act 1, the cutscene where Knuckles throws a bomb works, but the building does not load.
  • In Launch Base Act 1 when you defeat the mid-boss, a game-ending bug appears that makes you stuck in the room.
  • There is no level select even if you have all the emeralds.

Eighth Special Stage

Sonic3 unused special stage in game.png
Feeling dizzy?

There is an eighth Special Stage with a grey Chaos Emerald (much like the fifth Emerald) that is inaccessible during normal gameplay. To access it, open the level select, set the sound test selection to 07, then hold A and press Start on "Special Stage 2".

The stage is fully playable, although it may occasionally slow to a crawl when collecting a blue sphere, which may have contributed to its removal. The Emerald has no special effect in-game, and does not appear on the end-of-stage tally in any form other than a score increase. The complete lack of rings also makes it impossible to get a Perfect Bonus on this stage.


(Source: Sonic Retro)

Sonic & Knuckles Zones

Hmmm...
To do:
  • Post a save-state here.
  • Is there any way to fully access the other zones?

A few remnants of the Sonic & Knuckles zones are still left in the game. As mentioned earlier, Flying Battery would have been played between Carnival Night and Ice Cap, but when the game was split into two that zone was moved into Sonic & Knuckles to give it more levels. Most of the data that once belonged to these levels either isn't present in the game anymore or isn't currently accessible. Still, there's some leftovers of Flying Battery in Sonic 3: a data select icon, its music, and even its bosses!

You can "access" these zones using the following Game Genie codes:

Zone Act 1 Code Act 2 Code
Mushroom Hill ABZA-ARFL AFZA-ARFN
Flying Battery ABZA-AJE8 AFZA-AJFA
Sandopolis ABZA-ATFR AFZA-ATFT
Lava Reef ABZA-AWFW AFZA-AWFY
Sky Sanctuary ABZA-AYF0 AFZA-AYF2
Death Egg ABZA-A0F4 AFZA-A0F6
The Doomsday ABZA-A2GG AFZA-A2GG
Glowing Spheres Bonus Stage ABZA-BJF8 AFZA-BJGA
Slot Machine Bonus Stage ABZA-BLF8 AFZA-BLGA
Ending ABZA-A4ER AFZA-A4ET
Lava Reef Act 3/boss ABZA-BREW
Hidden Palace AFZA-BREY
Death Egg Final Boss AFZA-BRE0
Hidden Palace (Special Stage Ring) AFZA-BRE2

Each level can be played through the level select. Lava Reef, Sky Sanctuary and Death Egg are accessible using the first, second and third 2P VS options respectively while The Doomsday Zone uses the Sound Test option. The glowing spheres and the slot machine bonus stages can be played by selecting "Bonus" on the level select. "Ending" can be accessed by selecting Angel Island Zone Act 1 and 2. Lava Reef Act 3 and Hidden Palace can be played by selecting Hydrocity Zone. Finally, The Death Egg final boss and Hidden Palace (Special Stage Ring) can be accessed through Marble Garden Acts 1 and 2.

Notice that you need to access these zones in a specific way. Currently, using only these codes will crash the game for most of the stages but it'll still play the correct music. Flying Battery Zone can be fixed using codes W4ZT-LE0R + 3CZT-LJ8W for Act 1 and W4ZT-LE1G + 3CZT-LJ9L for Act 2. It will be corrupted with glitchy collision and Ice Cap tiles appearing all over the place. However, some graphic tiles will not be overwritten and will use whatever was last loaded there which can make this zone even glitchier. Other Sonic & Knuckles Zones such as the Death Egg final boss, Hidden Palace, Lava Reef Act 3/boss, and Hidden Palace (Special Stage Ring) can accessed without the game crashing, although they are very glitched. The Bonus stages will work, but only on a real Sega genesis for some odd reason.

It is possible to use Sonic 3C's savestates to access the remaints of the Sonic 3 zones and for the most part it works the same way as using the codes above.

Flying Battery Zone

I wonder where Tails went?

This zone perhaps, retains the most data out of all the Sonic & Knuckles zones.

  • This Zone uses Icecap graphics.
  • There are some rings near the beginning of each Act.
  • No objects appear here other than Bosses.
  • The debug item list contains the usual ring, super monitor, debug rings, and various facing springs; it also contains the two Flying Battery Zone badniks.
  • This Zone has glitched collision.
  • Both the Act 1 and Act 2 bosses appear in this Zone; for some reason the Act 2 sub boss does not appear here, even though it exists fully functional within the game.
  • You need debug mode in order to reach the bosses as there is no easy way to get to them.
  • Act transitions are broken, after you beat Act 1 it doesn't take you to Act 2 and likewise, it doesn't take you anywhere when you beat Act 2.

Mushroom Valley Zone

Sonic standing atop two monitors, one of them is a Super ring and the other one is a Water Shield.
  • The title card refers to this level as "Zone" followed by an Act 1 or 2 depending on whichever your playing.
  • This zone uses Azure Lake graphics.
  • This zone contains an object layout, consisting of path swappers, monitors, springs, and some deleted/broken objects.
  • There are some rings scattered about in this Zone.
  • The object layout does not match any known layout of this zone.
  • Both Acts 1 & 2 contain objects.
  • This zone has glitched collision.
  • The debug item list contains the usual ring, super monitor, debug rings, and various facing springs; it also contains diagonal springs, and moving versions of the springs.
  • You need debug mode to explore, otherwise you will just fall to your death. (Unless you can make it onto one of the monitors near the start of each Act)
  • Each Act uses a different object layout.

Sandopolis Zone

Yeah Tails, I agree, this place is rather bland.
  • The title card refers to this level as "Zone" followed by an Act 1 or 2 depending on whichever you're playing.
  • This zone has glitched collision.
  • There is a repeating pattern of rings in this zone.
  • This Zone uses Angel Island Zone intro graphics.
  • Act 2 uses Angel Island Act 2's palette.
  • The debug item list contains the usual ring, super monitor, debug rings, and various facing springs.
  • You need debug mode to explore, otherwise you will just fall to your death.
  • Whenever this zone is accessed using the Game Genie up codes above, the game crashes with a purple screen. This is most likely because most of the data that once belonged to this zone is no longer present.

Lava Reef Zone

Where did all of the lava go?
  • The title card refers to this level as "Zone" followed by an Act 1 or 2 depending on whichever you're playing.
  • This Zone has glitched collision.
  • The debug item list contains the usual ring, super monitor, debug rings, and various facing springs.
  • Act 1 of this zone has some palette data; it contains the lava palette cycle and the palette cycle for the dark flashing rocks.
  • There are some rings strewn about the level.
  • The start position array (Where you start in the level) is intact; you start from the top of the level and fall downwards, just like in Sonic & Knuckles.
  • Act 2 does not have any palette data.
  • This zone uses Azure Lake graphics, much like Mushroom Valley.

Sky Sanctuary Zone

I don't even see a sky...
  • The title card refers to this level as "Zone" without any "Act 1" or "Act 2". This is because this Zone didn't use Act numbers in Sonic & Knuckles and Sonic 3 & Knuckles.
  • This Zone has glitched collision.
  • There is a repeating pattern of rings in this zone.
  • This Zone uses Angel Island Zone intro graphics.
  • The debug item list contains the usual ring, super monitor, debug rings, and various facing springs.
  • Act 2 uses Angel Island Act 2's palette.
  • Act 2 uses Death Egg Act 1 music for some odd reason. This could mean there was originally not going to be a second Act of Sky Sanctuary and instead Death Egg Zone would have three Acts. Or, this music oddity might be a result of every zone using different music for each Act. The exception to this rule is Sky Sanctuary Zone, which is supposed to use the same music for both Acts. The unused Sonic & Knuckles bonus stages also have music issues.
  • You need debug mode to explore, otherwise you will just fall to your death.

Death Egg Zone

Is that it?
  • The title card refers to this level as "Zone" followed by an Act 1 or 2 depending on whichever you're playing.
  • This Zone has glitched collision.
  • There is a repeating pattern of rings in this zone.
  • This Zone uses Angel Island Zone intro graphics.
  • The debug item list contains the usual ring, super monitor, debug rings, and various facing springs.
  • Act 2 uses Angel Island Act 2's palette.
  • For some reason, both Acts use Death Egg Act 2 music. This might have something to do with Sky Sanctuary's music oddity. (mentioned above)
  • You need debug mode to explore, otherwise you will just fall to your death.
  • Whenever this zone is accessed using the Game Genie codes up above, the game crashes with a purple screen. This is most likely because most of the data that once belonged to this zone is no longer present.

The Doomsday Zone

Isn't this fight supposed to take place in space?
  • The title card refers to this level as "Zone" without any "Act 1" or "Act 2" This is because this Zone didn't use Act numbers in Sonic & Knuckles and Sonic 3 & Knuckles.
  • This Zone has glitched collision.
  • There is a repeating pattern of rings in this zone.
  • This Zone uses Angel Island Zone intro graphics.
  • The debug item list contains the usual ring, super monitor, debug rings, and various facing springs.
  • Act 2 uses Angel Island Act 2's palette.
  • Act 2 of this zone was never used in Sonic & Knuckles. (This Act is not to be confused with the Doomsday Act 2 that is listed in the level selects of both Sonic 3 and Sonic 3 & Knuckles)
  • You need debug mode to explore, otherwise you will just fall to your death.
  • Whenever this zone is accessed using the Game Genie codes up above, the game crashes with a purple screen. This is most likely because most of the data that once belonged to this zone is no longer present.

Level ID 0D (Ending)

Sonic is spooked, maybe he knows something we don't?
  • The title card refers to this level as "Zone" followed by an Act 1 or 2 depending on whichever you're playing.
  • This Zone has glitched collision.
  • This zone uses Angel Island graphics.
  • This zone contains randomly place rings.
  • The debug item list contains the usual ring, super monitor, debug rings, and various facing springs.
  • Act 2 uses Angel Island Act 2's palette.
  • Act 2 of this zone was used for the ending in Sonic & Knuckles and Sonic 3 & Knuckles, Act 1 was never used.
  • This zone is almost exactly the same as it was in the Sonic 3C 0408 prototype.
  • You need debug mode to explore, otherwise you will just fall to your death.

Level Differences

Flying Battery Zone

Sonic the Hedgehog 3 Sonic & Knuckles
Sonic3 Flying Battery.png SK Flying Battery.png

In Act 1, the mid-boss capsule is in a different position. In the Sonic 3C 0408 prototype, the boss is in the same position as Sonic 3.

Sonic the Hedgehog 3 Sonic & Knuckles
Sonic3 Flying Battery2.png SK Flying Battery2.png

Compared to the final layout in Sonic & Knuckles, we see that a line of rings were removed, suggesting that perhaps that either the object placement and/or the level design for Act 1 was quite different.

Sonic the Hedgehog 3 Sonic & Knuckles
Sonic3 Flying Battery3.png SK Flying Battery3.png

In Act 2, the location of the boss is very different.

Mushroom Valley Object Data

Object data of a zone that is found after Launch Base's data can be found at these ranges:

Act 1: 0x0069A4A to 0x0069B4B
Act 2: 0x0069B4C to 0x0069C0B

The data mostly consists of a repeated pattern of path swappers, springs, and monitors, and an object with the number 93, which deletes itself once it's loaded, suggesting that these acts were once for testing. Interestingly, this zone (ID 07) went through a good bit of layout changes from Sonic 3C 0408 to the final version of Sonic & Knuckles. It could be possible that this is an object layout from a very early version of Mushroom Hill Zone. (Referred to as Mushroom Valley in this game)

Unused Objects

Red Revolving Spheres

I wonder if this is linked to the Red Ring of Death?

A spinning mass of red spheres, which can be placed in the first half of Angel Island Act 1 via debug mode. The spheres resemble those that appear in the game's special stages, but the object itself seems to have no apparent gameplay purpose. When it is placed, many palette and VRAM complications occur in the level, and the game slows down considerably. The object can be manipulated with the second controller.

  • Up - rotates the object vertically.
  • Right - rotates the object horizontally.
  • Down/Left - moves the object up or down.
  • A/C - changes the object's size.
  • B - rotates the object sideways.
  • Start - toggles automatic rotation.

Carnival Night Button

Sonic3-CNZButton.png

A button of unknown purpose. It can be placed in either Act of Carnival Night Zone via debug mode, but it doesn't appear to do anything. Also unused in Sonic 3 & Knuckles.

Ice Cap Breakable Block

Sonic3-ICZBreakableBlock.png

A glowing block that can be placed in either Act of IceCap Zone via debug mode. Jumping on it destroys it like the ice blocks. Also unused in Sonic 3 & Knuckles.

Other Unused Objects

There are objects that are never used that are located in the object pointer list. Objects 8F-98 delete themselves once loaded which is rather unusual. One of these objects is used in the Mushroom Hill object layout, suggesting that these were once objects that belonged to the Sonic & Knuckles Zones.

Unused Surfboard Intro

Sonic3Surfboard.gif

Sprites for an alternate intro sequence in which Sonic surfs onto Angel Island, rather than riding in on the Tornado. Interestingly, Sonic looks like his Sonic 2 incarnation, making this a fairly old leftover. The surfing Sonic sprite can still be placed in Angel Island Zone 1 via debug mode.

Surfboard1.png

The sprites used when Sonic ditches the surfboard.

Unused Sprites

Sprite Description
S3-Sbored.gif
Sonic in his signature "waiting" pose, but instead of pointing towards the direction he's facing, he falls asleep from boredom. Interestingly, this animation was used for the Game.com version of Sonic Jam.
S3-Swhistle.gif
Sonic whistling. This was also used in the Game.com Sonic Jam.
Sonic3leftoverTailsanim1.gif
A leftover animation from the Sonic 2 continue screen.
Sonic3-knuxmini.png
Unused gliding/climbing animations for Knuckles in 2-Player mode, despite him not having these abilities there (he uses Sonic's "temporary shield" ability, much like his single player "slot" uses Sonic). The recombined game, Sonic 3 & Knuckles, does not restore these functions (assuming they existed in the first place).
Sonic3eggmanpanic-running.gif
Sonic3eggmanpanic.png
A set of sprites where Eggman has a panicked facial expression. One of these sprites shows him attempting to jump into a boss machine or Egg Mobile.
Sonic3-eggmanlost.png

Appears to be nothing more than Eggman flying away towards the horizon. There's actually an object that uses these sprites, but it's never called by any routine.

Sonic3Minideathegg.png
A smaller rendition of the Death Egg that seems to be part of a Death Egg hologram projector, which itself was unused in Sonic & Knuckles.
Sonic3pgn.png
Diagonal frames of the Penguinator badnik from Ice Cap Zone. These can be seen for a split-second if you place a Penguinator on the large hill at the beginning of Act 1 using debug mode.
Sonic 3 Flying Battery icon.PNG
A save file icon for Flying Battery Zone before it was re-ordered to be in Sonic & Knuckles, which is different than the corresponding icon in Sonic 3 & Knuckles. You can view this icon in the PC and Genesis versions by hacking the save data to access level slot $04, or by using PAR codes 00C324:601E + 00C338:6002 to view it in a completed game save slot while scrolling through the zones.
(Source: Sonic Retro)
Sonic3-icz1introsprites.png
These graphics are loaded at the start of Ice Cap Zone 1. While the teleporter pad ended up being used in Sonic 3 & Knuckles for Knuckles' transition into the stage, the unusually oversized ice boulder was never used.
Unused Sonic 3 2-Player.PNG
Unused position icons for Competition Mode, most likely would have been used in the unused 2-Player positioning system.
Sonic 3 Unused Bomb.png
While these graphics are later used in Sonic & Knuckles, they go unused in this game. You can see it in a garbled form in Knuckles's broken post-Launch Base Act 2 boss cut-scene.

Act Clear Signs

Early
Sonic3-signpost-proto.png
Final
Sonic3-signpost-final.png

In Sonic 3, the sign frames are uncompressed and loaded dynamically over each other to conserve video memory. This said, also present in the game's data is an unused copy of the same art compressed like in Sonic 2, strongly suggesting it is from earlier in development.

Although Sonic, Tails, and Robotnik are basically the same as their Sonic 2 counterparts, Knuckles appears for the first time, with a slightly different appearance relative to the final art. This early version is still present in Sonic & Knuckles.

Unused Level Chunks

Several chunks of levels are unused during the game, found starting at FF8088:XX. Most of them have no noticeable differences from used chunks.

Angel Island Zone

Act1:D0, D5, E9
Sonic3-AI1-D0.png Sonic3-AI1-D5.png Sonic3-AI1-E9.png

Hydrocity Zone

Act2:1E, 29, D8
Sonic3-HC2-1E.png Sonic3-HC2-29.png Sonic3-HC2-D8.png

Marble Garden Zone

Act2:CB, E3, E9, FA
Sonic3-MG1-2-CB.png Sonic3-MG1-2-E3.png Sonic3-MG1-2-E9.png Sonic3-MG1-2-FA.png

Carnival Night Zone

Act1 and 2:7D, 9D, 50, 51, 59, 90, B2
Sonic3-CN1-2-7D.png Sonic3-CN1-2-9D.png Sonic3-CN1-2-50.png Sonic3-CN1-2-51.png Sonic3-CN1-2-59.png Sonic3-CN1-2-90.png Sonic3-CN1-2-B2.png

Ice Cap Zone

Act1:2C, 2D, 39, A8, BD, BE
Sonic3-IC1-2C.png Sonic3-IC1-2D.png Sonic3-IC1-39.png Sonic3-IC1-A8.png Sonic3-IC1-BD.png Sonic3-IC1-BE.png

Act2:4B, 5C, 6E, 9B, AB, BD
Sonic3-IC2-4B.png Sonic3-IC2-5C.png Sonic3-IC2-6E.png Sonic3-IC2-9B.png Sonic3-IC2-AB.png Sonic3-IC2-BD.png

Act1 and 2:D1
Sonic3-IC1-2-D1.png

Launch Base Zone

Act1:7E, 8F, 56, 88, D6, D7, DB, F1, F9, FD, FE
Sonic3-LB-1-7E.png Sonic3-LB-1-8F.png Sonic3-LB-1-56.png Sonic3-LB-1-88.png Sonic3-LB-1-D6.png Sonic3-LB-1-D7.png Sonic3-LB-1-DB.png Sonic3-LB-1-F1.png Sonic3-LB-1-F9.png Sonic3-LB-1-FD.png Sonic3-LB-1-FE.png

Act2:32, A6, A7, B2
Sonic3-LB-2-32.png Sonic3-LB-2-A6.png Sonic3-LB-2-A7.png Sonic3-LB-2-B2.png

Act1 and 2:24, DA
Sonic3-LB1-2-24.png Sonic3-LB1-2-DA.png

Unused Enemies

Both of these Badniks are curiously listed among all the other Badniks in the US and European manuals for Sonic 3.

  • Technosqueek: This Badnik later shows up in Sonic & Knuckles. For some reason, if you place a sideways one in debug mode, it crashes the game.
  • Blaster: Apparently is the same as in Sonic & Knuckles, but it has a difference. Their projectiles can be destroyed with a spin attack and it frees an animal.

Unused Bosses

  • Gapsule: A boss that takes the look of a capsule, nearly identical to the one in Sonic & Knuckles.
  • Flying Battery Laser Boss: A boss that is similar to the Wing Fortress Zone boss in Sonic the Hedgehog 2. Nearly identical to the one in Sonic & Knuckles, except for missing sound effects. For some reason, this boss doesn't appear in the unfinished Flying Battery Zone.
  • Hang Mobile: Almost the same as the one in Sonic & Knuckles, it is only slightly different (In terms of coding) and is missing sound effects.

Unused Audio

Hmmm...
To do:
Upload any songs that have not been uploaded.

Music

Most of the music from Sonic & Knuckles can be played from the Level Select/Sound Test.

Sound ID Song Comments
$09
Flying Battery Zone Act 1. The loop point in the "echo" track of the lead instrument is set slightly later than the rest of the tracks; as a result, it falls further and further out of sync every time the song loops. This was fixed in Sonic & Knuckles and its lock-on.
$0A Flying Battery Zone Act 2.
$0F Mushroom Valley/Hill Zone Act 1.
$10 Mushroom Valley/Hill Zone Act 2.
$11 Sandopolis Zone Act 1.
$12 Sandopolis Zone Act 2.
$13 Lava Reef Zone Act 1.
$14 Lava Reef Zone Act 2/Hidden Palace Zone.
$15 Sky Sanctuary Zone.
$16 Death Egg Zone Act 1.
$17 Death Egg Zone Act 2.
$18 Sonic & Knuckles Act 1 Boss. This can be heard while fighting any Hydrocity Zone boss if you jump out of the water after the drowning music starts.
$1A The Doomsday Zone.
$1B Glowing Spheres Bonus Stage.
$1D Slot Machine Bonus Stage.
(Source: Sonic Retro)

Sound Effects

Many of these sound effects would see use in Sonic & Knuckles, though some of these sounds would also be unused there.

Sound ID Sound Comments
$3A
This is a shield sound leftover from Sonic the Hedgehog 2.
$40
Unused; sounds like an electric zap. This sound would later be used for the Thunder Shield in Sonic Generations and Sonic Lost World, suggesting that it may have been an early sound effect for the Thunder Shield.
$53
Laser charging sound, used for the Flying Battery Zone laser boss and the jumping spike balls in Lava Reef Zone Act 2.
$54
Laser firing sound, used for the Flying Battery Zone laser boss.
$55
Sound effect used when a brick in Sandopolis Zone goes across a line of black rotating circles.
$5A
Unused; sounds like something revving up. This sound effect would see use in Sonic 3D Blast.
$5C
The sound of Mecha Sonic short-circuiting after it's defeated.
$69
The sound that plays when you push a brick in Sandopolis Zone.
$6B
Unknown, possibly unused; sounds like a higher-pitched version of the sound heard when hitting an R, Up or Down block in the Special Stage from Sonic 1.
$6D
Unused; sounds like a door closing.
$71
Duplicate of $3A; another shield sound leftover from Sonic the Hedgehog 2.
$7A
The sound of the Lava Reef Act 2 boss emerging from lava.
$7C
Used by the magnetized platforms in Flying Battery Zone.
$7D
Unused; sounds like mild rattling.
$84
Unused; sounds like something charging up. Only seems to be referenced in some zone with a high level ID which is composed of garbage data.
$85
Unused; sounds like it would have been used in cooperation with $84.
$87
The sound that plays when you bounce on a mushroom in Mushroom Hill Zone.
$88
Mushroom Hill Zone elevator sound.
$89
Mushroom Hill Zone satellite dish (from Dr. Robotnik's season-changing machine).
$8A
The sound the ghosts from Sandopolis Zone make when they vanish.
$8B
The sound of the Mushroom Hill miniboss chopping a log.
$8C
Unused; sounds like something starting up quickly.
$8D
Unknown, possibly unused; a very quiet sound.
$8E
Unused; another electric rev-up sound.
$8F
The sound the door on the pyramid in Sandopolis Zone makes when it opens.
$90
Door closing sound from Sandopolis Zone.
$91
Door closed sound from Sandopolis Zone.
$92
Ghost sound effect from Sandopolis Zone.
$93
The sound that plays when the armor on Dr. Robotnik's golem machine comes back on.
$95
The sound of the giant hand appearing to attempt to crush you in the Lava Reef miniboss.
$96
The sound the giant spikeballs in Lava Reef Zone make when they roll around.
$97
The sound a Toxomister makes when it sprays its toxic gases.
$98
The sound of a falling stalactite in Lava Reef Zone.
$99
Unused; A small "tick" sound.
$9A
Unused; an alternative door closing sound of some sort. This would also see use in Sonic 3D Blast.
$9B
A loud bang that plays when the Sandopolis Zone Act 2 boss comes closer to you.
$9C
Sound that plays when a Super Emerald regains its color.
$9D
The sound of the missile reticles in the Lava Reef Act 2 boss.
$9E
The sound of a platform breaking upon coming into contact with the Lava Reef Act 2 boss.
$A0
The sound of the Lava Reef Act 2 boss firing a missile.
$A1
Unused. A low-humming, unsettling sound.
$A2
The sound of the speed-up launchers in Flying Battery Zone and Death Egg Zone.
$A3
Death Egg Zone lift platform sound effect.
$A4
The sound that Mecha Sonic makes when he goes super.
$A5
Unused; sounds like something rising or powering up?
$A6
Unused; another dashing noise.
$AE
The sound that the seesaw mushroom from Mushroom Hill Zone makes when the black weight lands on it. This sound is also used in the Bonus Stages in Sonic & Knuckles.
$B5
A leftover from Sonic 1 that was used for the breakable diamonds in the Special Stage. Might have been used for the Slot Machine Bonus Stage which is based off that Special Stage.
$BC
Unused? Possible waterfall sound effect.
$C2
The sound of the flamethrowers in Flying Battery Zone and Lava Reef Zone.
$C4
The sound Red Eye makes when it gets angry.
$C5
Unused; sounds like it would be used in coordination with $C4.
$C6
The sound that the spiked platforms make when they orbit Red Eye.
$CA
The sound of the light beam transportation systems in Death Egg Zone.
$CE
The gusts of wind from Mushroom Hill Zone. Also used in Knuckles' ending after Super Mecha Sonic explodes.
$CF
A louder version of $CE that might be unused even in Sonic 3 & Knuckles.
$D1
Possibly unused; another very faint sound that may sound like static.
$D3
Possibly unused; sounds like a quiet version of $CD.
$D4
Used by the bouncing puzzle room in Death Egg Zone.
$D5
Unknown/unused; sounds like rumbling with some quiet high pitched noises. Repeatedly pressing the C button when playing this sound in the Sound Test makes it play longer.
$D6
Unknown/unused; rumbling/electric sound?
$D7
The sound of the elevators in Lava Reef Zone and Death Egg Zone.
$D8
Unused; sounds like a screeching warning siren. Repeatedly pressing the C button when playing this sound in the Sound Test makes it play longer.
$D9
The sound the electromagnets in Flying Battery Zone and the black gravity spheres in Death Egg Zone make.
$DA
The sound of the wind trap Knuckles activates in Mushroom Hill Zone.
$DC - $DF
All of these sounds are duplicates of $DB (heard when running across water in Hydrocity Zone) and are likely placeholders. Sonic & Knuckles replaces $DC with its credits medley.

Scrolling Credits

The game contains an unused, unfinished scrolling credits routine, which can be activated by setting RAM address FA87 to 2 during the credits sequence. The actual credits were apparently not yet in place when this was abandoned, as it scrolls small and large versions of the letters B-F, and then abruptly fades to the Sonic 3 logo screen. The final staff roll simply fades between static pages of text.

Miscellaneous

  • Like Sonic 2, all versions of Sonic 3 have both English and Japanese content (e.g. "Tails" for US/Europe, Miles for Japan). The content used depends on the console's internal region setting.
  • Knuckles' theme is just a set of drums that lasts for roughly four seconds, and loops forever. However, at around the 34-second mark is a brief voice sample before the next section of drums. This in and of itself isn't particularly interesting, but it should also be noted that whenever the song plays in-game it's always in scripted events; the song only ever plays for a maximum of 10 seconds or so. The only way to listen to this small sample is to use the sound test, jump just before the bridge collapses in the transition from Angel Island to Hydrocity and land on the piece of land that you fought the boss on and listen to it there, or wait after Knuckles bombs the building near the end of Launch Base Act 1.