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Summer of Sonic Past

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Arts from the Past: Summer of Sonic 2009

Saturday, January 8th, 2011

We’ve all shared so many memories over the last three years of the Summer of Sonic convention! Some of the best ones are contained in the fanart that we see every year – the sheer creativity and artistic talent of the community continues to bowl us over without fail. In 2009′s Truman Brewery convention, staff collected most of the discarded fanart drawn at the venue, in an attempt to preserve the great stuff we saw on the day.

It’s taken us a while to find time to scan them all (like a year and a bit!?) but today I’m proud to present a collection of artwork from the 2009 Summer of Sonic event. This post serves to give back said artwork to those who wanted to archive it on their DeviantArt account or elsewhere, and to detail just how much effort and fun is put into these works by fans. Ultimately the Summer of Sonic is more than just the work of myself and the staff who host the event – it’s about your dedication to the Sonic franchise and your expression of that dedication.

I leave you with the gallery below, along with details of the artist, if it was available on the original copy (and their age at the time). Please feel free to contact me directly if you want to have your name listed, changed or your piece removed from this page at

The new Summer of Sonic 2011 site will be arriving soon – along with the beginning of the lead-up to Sonic’s 20th Anniversary! We’re always listening to your suggestions and comments, and now there are several places for you to make your voice heard – on the Summer of Sonic forum on The Sonic Stadium, the SoS Facebook page, or on our DeviantArt group (thanks to SyamingLi for its creation).

SOS 11 Suggestions Box – Merchandise [CLOSED]

Tuesday, November 30th, 2010

A lot of you have suggested merchandise as something you’d like for SOS 11, a fair few complained there wasn’t enough: or, heaven help, the good stuff got taken by people who got in earlier than you. Well, I can’t really solve the latter… because thats kind of the benefit of getting there the earliest isn’t it? A couple even suggeted holding extra things back to sell at different times of the day… so you’d rather have it based on pot luck? Oookay.

I'm with stupid.

Now in 2009 you could buy TRANS//LATION for signage by Bentley and a lot of STC prints from Nigel & Nigel. In 2010 in the shop area we had the Archie comic prints and a vast array of specially printed Crush 40 merchandise. Plus Nigel Dobbyn had his prints of course.

Now I know you guys want this cd or this rare thing not seen since forever, failing of course to note that we would presumably have to buy, store and transport the merch before we even got around to selling it. Now when you get dealing with monies it starts getting very complicated. Our hands are tied a lot of the time by licencing – true story I did actually contact Jazwarez in late 2009 about a possible special Juvi statue for SOS10. Hey, No one can ever accuse me of not thinking big when it comes to this event – alas unless a few thousand of you were going to turn up and then all buy three each it REALLY wasn’t going to be really worth it.

Plus we’d’ve have enough event budget left to maybe buy a swiss roll to share out amongst you. It wouldn’t even be a chaos one.

Now licences will again be a bugbear, and I know this can be got around by possibly getting the licencees down to SOS, other places like Tokyo Toys have been suggested several times, blah blah blah. However I will be speaking with Mr & Mrs SEGA regarding this to see if there’s a way around it. So if specific Summer of Sonic branded merchandise can be created to be sold what would you be interested in?

T-Shirts obviously, but what else? After genuine suggestions here so please engage the reality switch on your brain before typing.


- ArchangelUK -

Summer Of Sonic 2011 – Now Entering Special Stage

Sunday, October 17th, 2010

EDIT: Comments are now closed.

Hi all, its your host with the most ArchangelUK here.  We’re not even out of 2010 yet and we’ve got a vast array of work still to do this year on Summer Of Sonic.

Well, I say we…

In order to progress with Summer Of Sonic 2011 I have to begin thinking about it now. As such we’ve begun talking about it in the SOS war-room and I’d like to open up the floor to suggestions from you guys. These are suggestions at this point only. Some things to bear in mind:

1) Don’t bother to suggest air-con. Ok? We know. As far as we were aware the Pavilion had air-con and you weren’t the only ones who suffered.

2) Please keep your suggestions in the realms of both reality and legality. Stupidity will be dealt with harshly and with a big stick.

3) If we then go to do something suggested within the resultant suggestion that doesn’t mean it’s all your responsibility it happened. There are still people who honestly are convinced Crush 40 happened because of them. You REALLY aren’t.

4) Final decisions are always that of SEGA and the SOS management team.

Otherwise you’re free to ask for whoever. Go on, off you go then.

Vger’s SoS 2010 Roundup

Friday, August 13th, 2010

Okay, I’ve put together some thoughts from this years Summer of Sonic hopefully I’ve covered all the important stuff.


This year it was a minor miracle we managed to pull it off as everything seemed to be working against us on Friday, starting with the venue not being cleaned out, discovering holes in the floor, to suddenly having our people capacity number dropped less than 18 hours before the doors open, and I’m only scratching the surface here. We then had, a faulty Wii, a DS that couldn’t take a dev cart, a stolen laptop and camera, and the less said about the Pavilion staff the better. It is a true testament to the commitment of staff that we managed to overcome these problems.

Tails judges as the Pavilion staff dawdles.

So what did I end up doing? Well to start with not much, getting to the venue and finding it in the state it was, we had to just sit off the side lines and watch the Pavilion staff clean up very slowly. Once most of it was cleaned up it was a case of all hands on deck to get as much done as possible, setting up the stage, tables, pods, chairs, sound checks etc. A couple of hours later and we had something approaching a convention hall.

The next morning went a little more smoothly with everything falling into place, we ended up opening the doors half an hour late, but hey the year we we open the doors on time will be the year where everything goes to plan, and that is never going to happen.

Looks okay from where I am.

My Job

My duties this time round were a bit more varied than normal, starting out with my usual role of door man along with Urtheart, I think I must have got about 200 people through in that first half hour or so, all the time saying, “if you leave you may not be able to get back in,” over and over again, in the end though capacity wasn’t a problem.

Convention hall filling up nicely.

After about half an hour and a case of dry throat later it was to take on my next role… as Wentos… or so I thought, as it was all a clever ploy by AAUK to get me on stage to perform my forfeit for failing this years wrecks factor. Damn him for playing on my willingness to help out! As it turned out it wasn’t so bad as I had feared that I would be forced to sing something… which would have cleared the room faster than suddenly discovering it was really a Mario convention, no instead I had to do Caramelldancin.

Once my humiliation was over with it was on with my third role of the day, Sonic’s helper. Which on it’s own doesn’t sound like much but when your in a convention hall filed with Sonic fans it suddenly turns into a real hassle. In the end it involved me (politely) asking people to move aside, a role my voice seems to be well suited to, and taking photos hopefully most of them didn’t come out too blurry.

The Event

I’ve talked a lot about what I was doing at the event but what about the rest of the event? What was actually going on? Well we had a lot more than last year, for a start the place was bigger which was a good thing however the ventilation wasn’t as good as last time some of those cos-players must have cooked.

The merch cabinet was back with the usual stock of Sonic curiosities old and new including some of mine, and a very special addition from First 4 Figures, after seeing Super Sonic light up for the first time I was glad I’d pre-ordered the special edition. peaking of merch this year we actually had a shop this time round where some of the staff flogged some of there merch and of course there was the magnificent Crush 40 merchandise.

This year we had two new games on show Sonic Colours for the Wii and DS which I didn’t get around to but it will be out soon enough, and the much anticipated Sonic 4 which I did take a few minutes to try out it was okay but I felt it’s a good thing they are taking the extra time to refine it a little more, and lets not forget the Allstars racing contest which was one by someone playing as Tails which pleased me no end.

Then there was the stage where we had me humiliating myself, the Wrecks Factor, Nevermind the Buzzbombers, Afternoon Tea with Jun Senoue, an amazingly busy cosplay contest that I still think Sally should have won, and of course the Crush 40 concert to round off the day (videos of which should be forthcoming soon on my end).

I’m sure I’m forgetting a pile of things but when your dashing around the place it’s hard to keep track of everything that’s going on.

In the End

Overall it was once again an experience that left me mentally and physically drained, with barely enough energy to find the after party, but I wouldn’t change a thing about it, I love helping out where I can making the day the best it can be for you guys. Now I hope everyone will join me in thanking Svend ‘Dreadknux’ Joscelyne for creating the event, Kevin ‘AaUK’ Eva for doing his SEGA magic, Adam ‘T-Bird’ Tuff for all his work organising the stage and the rest of the staff who helped to make this the best Summer of Sonic ever!

SOS 10 Overview: AAUK (Pt 2)

Thursday, August 12th, 2010

Hi everybody, I’m currently (trying) to get some sense of a break – alas things seem to be conspiring against me as usual. It’ll be nice one day to not have to worry about this sort of thing, very nice, as it stands though I’m always going to have to come back and do something. So as I’m here I might as well give praise to a few who should perhaps be getting a mite more credit on top of that issued already by my esteemed co-organisers. Who knows maybe as its me that’ll be worth more – like a double praise-bow. Or a pint of Strongbow.

Incidentally I was going to address things regarding my decision to stop being an active part of SOS after SOS11, but that ended up rather taking over the piece so I’ll leave that for another day – I also want to word it just right. It needs to be worded right… For now lets just shine the spotlight on a few individuals.


Make no bones about it, Adam was frickin’ GOD this year, instrumental in helping me to get Crush 40 over here for you guys be it whispering sweet nothings into Jun and Johnny’s ears to get them to agree in principle to come or helping me sweet talk SEGA Japan into allowing Crush 40 to come down and perform with his awesome proposal writing skills. Adam was also responsible for much more, he (along with Svend) forked out part of Johnny’s plane ticket, covered the hire of the band equipment (which reminds me I owe him £200 towards that) and the organisation of an awful lot over the Friday and Saturday.

Adam was my suave, sophisticated and much better looking wingman this year. He said to me in about May when we were really getting into things that he didn’t realise SOS took as much as it did in organising. Fact of the matter is he handled his side expertly in spite of a lot of surprises and bumps in the way… and on the day he was a tour de force considering a rather unpleasant experience with an unknown agent in his meal the night before.

Kudos and thank you sir.


If you look up the term “unsung hero” in an encyclopedia (because Dictionaries DO NOT HAVE PICTURES IN THEM) you’ll probably find Urtheart. Lewis (Sonic Yoda) posted the following in the SSMB and it sums up my thoughts somewhat.

I need to give a very special message to a particular member of the SoS staff:

There’s been one man who has staffed every SoS so far and has received almost no recognition for what he has done. His name is Josh ‘Urtheart’ Cartlidge and he has volunteered his time and effort to man the doors and deal with security every year. He does this for absolutely nothing and spends the majority of his day on the doors to make sure everyone is checked into the convention following the correct procedure.

Now, this probably sounds a bit dull. “Yeah, so what? How hard can it be to make sure people get in?” Well if you think that you need to wise up and realise that Josh misses everything you get to enjoy. Playing Sonic 4? Forget it. Meeting Nigel Dobbyn? Forget it. Watching Crush 40? Clear off!

What bugs me most about this is that Josh didn’t need to be on the doors all day because he had 2 paid and qualified members of security helping, yet he still fully committed to his role. That’s dedication and as far as I can see, he didn’t even receive a certificate for his 3 years of service.

Seriously, if you were a Sonic fan giving up your time to staff a Sonic convention, you would at least hope you get to enjoy it on the same level as everyone else. Josh puts in some incredible effort to do what he does and he takes all the flak you give him when you’re waiting to get in or end up disappointed that you missed getting a goodie bag.

Next year there needs to be as many people cosplaying as Josh as there was this year as Shadow! Make sure you show Urtheart just how valued he is in the Sonic community at the next possible occasion. Thank you Urth for doing such an amazing job year-in, year-out.

Couldn’t say better than that.


Being Sonic might seem a pretty cushy job, what Lewis does though is BECOME Sonic. Also the Sonic costume is NOT a nice place to be, if we hired an “actor” to play Sonic they’d last about 10-15 mins before disappearing off for a break. What Lewis does every year is do about 5x the amount of time they do, REPEATEDLY. Seriously we beg him to stop and he wants to go back out there for everyone the silly sod.  Not only that he was Wentos this year – and that coat is HOT. When he’s not in a costume he’s keen to help out in any way.

My thanks mate.


You already know Vger very well for being such a great sport with Carameldansen. Blake helped run the ASR tournament with Dale/Shadtzer.  What you don’t know is that in the set-up and closedown these two were EVERYWHERE. Whenever someone needed a team to help with something Blake was there and helping out without complaint – if you needed some help he was at your side immediately. Vger deserves thanks for taking a lead role in the closedown of the event and helping me out in a time of trial.  Both worked like trojans to little fanfare – I’d like to give them such now.


Roarz wasn’t even a member of staff – but was quick to volunteer his services as runner supplying the crew with liquid refreshments and even buying a FREAKIN’ FAN for people.  Ultimately the best joy was just seeing Roarz again for the first time since SOS 08 and seeing him so happy.  I’d like to offer my thanks for his kind offers and for helping out in various ways.

The entire crew deserves your respect and thanks, as they have mine.  That’s all for now.


Shadzter’s Summer of Sonic 2010 Experience

Wednesday, August 11th, 2010

With Summer of Sonic 2010 wrapped up and us staff having recovered (at least a little bit), I thought it time I put my thoughts about the convention out there and share some photos (sorry for crappy DSi quality).

Sonic & SEGA All-Stars Racing World Championship Tournament

I was staffing the Sonic & SEGA All-Stars Racing tournament with Sonic Wrecks’ Blake Draco. Things went O.K. during time trial qualifiers, despite him and I having difficulty monitoring two pods each out of a total of four to make sure everyone kept to the three lap limit, didn’t cheat and helped new players/owners of other console versions to learn the XBOX 360 versions controls.

The 32-player knockout round was a mess since only about half the people showed up but it was more than likely because people had got stuck in queue for other things going on. We didn’t take this into consideration when planning the tournament and I deeply apologise to those who did show up that had to wait while we tried to find your opponents and sort out what to do from this point. The last thing we wanted to do was keep participants standing there wondering what the hell was going on and what you’re doing next.

I also apologize to the few that turned up later and/or didn’t catch our shout outs for you and then had to be disqualified. I felt so bad for you guys having to miss out and wish there was something we could have done.

Despite all of these problems with the tournament, we got our winner and runner-up crowned and their trophies given to them on stage to an applause from the huge crowd of attendees, which made the stress and difficulties all worth it.

The Days Events, Games and Guests

It goes without saying that this year has been bigger and better than ever, with so much to do and see there was plenty to keep any Sonic fan occupied. We had a Cosplay Contest, an Art Contest, a Sonic & SEGA All-Stars Racing tournament, a comics table where Sonic the Comic’s Nigel Dobbyn was present, a merchandise store,
Sonic the Hedgehog 4: Episode 1, Sonic Colours (both Wii and DS), plenty of other game pods, many on-stage events including Nevermind the Buzzbombers, The Wrecks Factor Live, the one and only Crush 40 and more. Now that is a lot of activities and entertainment. All for a whole day and all for free.

The People of Summer of Sonic

The Summer of Sonic couldn’t be what it is without the people behind the scenes who pull it all together voluntarily and the special guests who give up their time to attend. There is a huge team of us staff who work hard for this event and don’t get paid. They give up their free time, money and risk their sanity and health for the love of one spiny blue speedster and his community of fans.

Many of the Summer of Sonic’s guests and activities all come from the event’s main organisers. ArchangelUK, Dreadknux and T-Bird who deserve the highest respect and thanks for their huge efforts. Without these three guys, there was no way we could have had all of the special things we had and no way we would have gotten through the day.

All of the other staff at the event such as Vger, Flyboy Fox, JayZeach, DiscoPonies, Bmn, Roareye Black, Roarey Raccoon, Echo Hawk, Jemnezmy, Blake Draco, Urtheart, Nemain, Turbo, Iceman Etika, Gnasher and others deserve huge praise, too. This is what the true super power of teamwork has made: a large convention for the community and by the community.

The Heart of the Convention

The heart of Summer of Sonic is what keeps people coming back every year and makes the event really some thing special. The heart is within the community who attend this convention every year and it really shows. From every inch of the convention, you can see people socializing and making new friends, sharing each others experiences in their time in the fandom and even their creations in areas like the art tables. I myself got to see a good friend I’ve made in the community outside of the staff here, Doctor MK, who is the founder of the charity event Sonic Relief that I help out with. I also got to meet other folks, too, like Skai5er (on the left of the photo). To see a room full of love, friendship and spirit for our favourite blue dude with ‘tude is why we staff volunteer our energy and souls to this event.

Final Thoughts

I really enjoyed myself! It was good to see familiar and new faces, make new friends and a pleasure to work with my fellow staff. I didn’t get to take part in many of the days events since I was staffing, but it’s worth it to bring you guys the goods. I’m glad all of us, attendees and staff alike, got to enjoy the Crush 40 concert at the end. That’s an experience I’ll always remember and treasure. Johnny and Jun were fantastic! The way they interacted with the crowd who love them so much was absolutely fantastic. I’m sure the rest of the fandom are so grateful to them for coming down to see us all.

All in all, Summer of Sonic 2010 was a blast and I look forward to next years event for Sonic’s big 20th Anniversary. A massive thanks to my fellow staff and thanks to everyone in the community who have supported us. See you all next year!

Check out more photos of the event below -

SoS From The Front Entrance

Tuesday, August 10th, 2010

Another year over for Summer of Sonic for you guys but sadly the SoS work doesn’t quite stop for some of us.
But before we pass the torch there are a few things I want to say.


Dreadknux’s Summer of Sonic 2010 Memories

Monday, August 9th, 2010

The Summer of Sonic continues to astound and amaze me. It was only three years ago that I was paying for a community hall with my own money and arranging a small-time gathering for Sonic fans in Covent Garden. In a very short time, it has ballooned into a major event on every Sonic fan’s calendar, and has a tonne of backing from Sega itself. But the one thing that surprises me (in a good way) the most, is you guys.

I had the pleasure of speaking to some awesome Sonic fans inbetween my epic sprinting from one end of the venue space to the other. You guys were there to enjoy Sonic 4, Sonic Colours and Crush 40, but you also understood what the point of the Summer of Sonic was all about – making new friends and chatting about Sonic with one another. And I was more than happy to chat to each and every one of you. I’m just sorry I didn’t have the time to stick around for longer than five minutes.

The scary thing was just how many people we ended up fitting in that venue. You guys arrived in droves, and that’s what truly knocked me for six. Standing on stage at the start of Summer of Sonic 2009 and seeing 400 people cheer is one thing, but welcoming 2010′s event with ArchAngelUK in front of 800 fellow Sonic fanatics, all screaming their heads off, was actually insane.

The crowd really got into it, and even though we had heat problems you all trucked on. As ArchAngelUK said, SoS10 really was a victory in the face of adversity for the organisers, but this was just as true for the attendees as well. So a big thank you for sticking around and understanding the issues we were facing.

As has already been said, the heat was only the last in a long laundry list of issues with the venue we chose. You might remember back in May I posted a ‘behind the scenes’ video of The Pavilion in all its open glory – albeit with a ton of furniture and other rubbish littered about the space. All of that stuff was still in there by the time the team arrived to set up on Friday 6th.

And adhering to the floorplan straight away proved difficult – for example, the desks for the Shop Stop and Signing Booth were on the second tier, but we couldn’t move them because we had to wait for the top tier to be cleared of rubbish. But we couldn’t move that stuff ourselves, so were at the mercy of the venue’s furniture removals people, who decided that they would happily take their time doing so, even though we sort of paid them to take all this stuff away a week ago.

Some of the staff were genuinely very helpful however and wanted to ensure we had everything we needed. Overall though it was a total nightmare, given we booked the Friday specifically to arrange furniture and set up tech.

It wasn’t just the furniture people that were tardy either. Despite paying for his attendance for a day and a half, our hired sound technician decided not to appear on Friday, meaning we had to coerce the venue’s management to get backup people in order for Crush 40 to do a sound check. You might have noticed actually, during Crush 40′s performance, that the sound dipped a little bit before reaching rather high levels at one point. That was because our sound technician decided to leave his post and enjoy the gig in the crowd. Needless to say, we weren’t impressed. And he took a nap an hour before we opened the doors! We don’t like paying the wages of lazy people, frankly.

The icing on the cake was the missing equipment, which was one of the main reasons we opened late – along with a few other last-minute requests that I wished we were asked about sooner – and nearly knocked the whole operation off-kilter. Luckily, Rory/Roareye’s resolve was absolutely fantastic, and together we all clubbed up and improvised. I was also asked by the management if there was a way to cut the number of people we would let in to around 500. That didn’t get a very pleasant response from me – we hired a 1000-strong space, we intended to use it.

Because we were blindsighted by these issues, we missed some obvious things that would have been helpful during the day – organised queue ropes and people looking after the new games, the placement of Sonic Colours (in retrospect, not a good idea to allow a queue to form across the stage crowd) and a better handling of Crush 40′s signing period (thrust upon us by last-minute stage requests as well).

In fact, I can tell you exactly the worst moment of Summer of Sonic 2010 for me – it was trying to pull Johnny Gioeli and Jun Senoue away from a massive line of fans wanting photos and signed merchandise. It was a horrible thing to experience on my side. If I was just an unconnected member of venue staff, telling people ‘no more signings,’ it wouldn’t be so bad. But being a massive Sonic fan myself, looking at other massive Sonic fans pleading with me ‘just one photo, please’… it cuts a guy up.

Despite all of this though, I couldn’t have been happier with how Summer of Sonic 2010 went. All of the volunteers (these guys don’t get paid – big them up!) really stepped up their game to ensure all the attendees had a Way Past Cool time, and it seemed like you guys really appreciated the effort we went into to make this day happen. Which is all the thanks I need. Sure, there are things to learn from every convention – it’s the side-effect of having fans organise a fan event, after all – but I feel we really pulled a rabbit out of the hat and staged the greatest Summer of Sonic yet.

Jun and Johnny were absolute stars, looking after as many people as they could, and Jun even went back to the queue later in the day just to carry on signing! They were meant to be on stage performing at that time! They were super stoked to attend and perform for everyone on Saturday, and they seem very keen on coming back at a later date. Make of that what you will. I spoke with Jun whilst collapsed on a sofa and he was very excited to look into his goodie bag and find a First4Figures Metal Sonic model. Johnny seemed ultra-tired afterwards, but was still as enthusiastic and chipper as he was on the Friday. Two awesome guys.

Nigel Dobbyn was also an absolute star, and I’m slightly gutted that this was the second time he’s attended SoS and I’ve not been able to spend some proper time with the chap. Being a huge Sonic the Comic fan, I kicked myself for that one. I did manage to hang around long enough to help kick-start his Art Surgery – his intended table had been understandably taken by eager fans wanting to take part in the art contest. It was a struggle to ensure those guys had alternative places to sit, while Nigel could get on with his day, but it was worth the effort. It’s good when you’re able to please as many people as possible in a bad situation.

There are so many stories, anecdotes and special moments for me from the Summer of Sonic 2010 that I fear I will be here all day if I recounted them all. So I’ll start from the ones that had the biggest impact to me. Watching nearly 800 people flood The Pavilion after a mere seven minutes of opening the doors was simply jaw-dropping.

At the time, I was sat in the crow’s nest/technical area trying to desperately fix our internet connection to provide some sort of video or radio stream. At first glance there were about 400 or so attendees (our rough visit count last year), and I had been somewhat desensitised to that number. But then when I looked up again two minutes later the upper and second tiers were swarming with people. Eek. Not entirely sure how I didn’t get stage fright.

Never Mind the Buzzbombers was a hit as always, and Dave Luty (or Hogfather/Gnasher on SSMB) was an excellent host as always. Aaron ‘RubyEclipse’ Webber (of Sega of America fame) and Johnny Gioeli helped us try to win some audience members fantastic prizes, but the highlight came when Johnny had to answer quick-fire questions on Jun Senoue’s career. Nobody had seen Jun at this point of the day, so to see him slowly pop his head from the VIP balcony shortly after Johnny was placed on the spot was a truly special moment, purely to see the reaction from the crowd once they spotted him. I hope Johnny and Jun are still friends after that final score.

Jemnezmy brought to my attention that there was an attendee who had unfortunately reacted quite badly to the humidity and heat. As a result, the poor guy was sat outside for most of the day while his friend dashed around to help him get better. Jem was able to grab a couple of Crush 40 T-Shirts, have them signed by Jun and Johnny along with some other freebies, as a consolation for missing out on the day. I wasn’t able to give him the gear myself, but I heard that he was blown away by the gesture, and was able to later come in and enjoy some of the event before Crush 40 took to the stage. That generosity suggested by others was a major highlight for me.

Other high points include hosting the cosplay contest – all of them fantastic and I wish we could have let them all win – receiving some great gifts from fellow fans such as a homemade CD from a great girl called Kati with a song called ‘Come On Shadow’ along with some awesome artwork, and Ian ‘Bmn’ Bennett working the crowd before Crush 40, getting everyone to yell ‘PINGAS’ in unison.

One of my all-time favourite moments was the countdown however, where Kevin and myself got the whole crowd of ~800 to clap for an insanely prolonged period of time, before taking a full force of excited cheers as we came to the stage. Thank you guys so much for welcoming our hard work and efforts in this way, it really means a lot to us and makes the blood, sweat and tears we all pump into this event truly worth it.

As Kevin said, we’ve already got the date locked down for Summer of Sonic 2011 – 25th June 2011. Initial planning between myself, himself and Sega starts very very soon, and we will be able to share more thoughts at a later date. Ideas, comments and (constructive please – understand that you did come to a free event after all) criticisms can be laid at Kevin’s post here (or here if you’d rather, but best to keep it in one place eh?). We will read them all and take them on board, as long as you’re not a big fat meanie! :)

By all means, share your pictures and video links in this comments thread if you fancy. I love seeing all of the memories being recorded here – it’s no secret that I have a very big folder collecting every single related SoS photo and video, after all. Thanks again for experiencing the Summer of Sonic 2010 with us, we’ll see you at Sonic’s 20th Anniversary!

SOS 10 Overview: AAUK (Pt 1)

Sunday, August 8th, 2010

And that Ladies and Gentlemen was Summer Of Sonic 2010. Over, done with and out. What I’m going to suggest to everyone in terms of the main staff is that they when they have the chance write down an overview of the event from their own perspective.  I’ve a few things to address, many of you are probably wondering “FOR THE LOVE OF TIKAL AAUK, wtf are you doing even up right now?” All I can say is I actually got up at 8am – I have things to do.  Perhaps we can say that my biggest achievement at SOS 10 was to actually make it home, make myself a drink, sit down and watch TV for a good half hour before taking myself to bed. Not having Echo Hawk having to physically drag me in a state of delerium up a flight of stairs like last year.

Discoponies just collared me on msn funnily enough about this.

“I’m glad this year u seemed to think about ur own well being too. U seemed less prone to a stroke.”
“You missed some s***.”
“Oh god.”

Firstly thanks to all the staff, too many to name here, for their hard work and their dedication to the cause. Whether you enjoyed the heck out of Summer of Sonic 2010 (the majority) or thought it was really boring and run by “nerds with egos” (Christ, what else do we have to put on to make you lot not “bored”?!?) the team worked like Trojans under some very difficult circumstances which I’ll get into in a sec. Anyone who thinks “oh its been organised really poorly” doesn’t know the whole story.

We actually had an absolute nightmare with the setup, as all of us arrived Friday to find that the venue had very kindly not yet been cleared out of all the other furniture which rather prevented us from doing much for many hours.  Amazingly we did actually manage to get everything up and working, the net was a bit fragile but working, we had all the audio and video ready and set up, the furniture was in place, C40 had done their mini-rehersal and we left late on Friday night with myself, Blake, Echo and bmn being the last to go, ready to finalise making things pretty in the morning due to the lack of time for it with the clean out leaving venue staff to finalise the tidying.

When we came back in the morning… our tech kit was gone. The laptops, and HD camera which were left in the “secured” venue and belonging to Rory/Roareye had vanished without a trace. You can imagine how we felt at this point; Rory despite being devastated insisted the most important thing was we somehow got everything set up again. And it’s that kind of attitude that shows you what a cool guy he is – caring more about the greater good of the con. So how Ian/bmn, Jay/Discoponies (who created all the snazzy video idents and things) and a couple of others somehow managed to get things set up again with a borrowed computer that was frankly rubbish in the time we had I have no idea. Because of all this we didn’t have the opportunity to make the venue as pretty as we’d’ve liked. I had some awesome ASR wall banners that never saw the light of day and a bunch of posters that should’ve been out and around.

Speaking of The Pavilion itself…don’t get me started on air-con situation and trust me we were just as hot.

Regarding Sonic 4 and Colours – unfortunately those were all the machines we could get, S4 and Colours Wii were on special machines and those were all that were available, the fact that the sync button on the Wii apparently was broken facilitating an emergency Gamecube controller backup didn’t help matters but the vast majority of people I think that played it really enjoyed the experience.

So perhaps we can say that SOS was a triumph in the face of some extreme advercity? For Sonic The Hedgehog 4 Episode I there was certainly a BIG reaction to it, and hey that was the E3 build so didn’t have the tweaks done to it. People were really enjoying Colours, the shop did a very steady turn over – and if you think I see a penny of that boy are you wrong! The art corner was VERY busy as before, lots of the more serious artists were very interested indeed in Nigel Dobbyn’s clinics. The cosplay was off the hook this year, how many people did we have in the end? 20-ish? Who’d’ve thought Shadow would be the most cosplayed character?! And can people now drop last years “you don’t know who Purge is” nonsense on the basis I twigged Sketch Turner and Roadkill before you. :P Incidentally there was an additional prize to that which I shall have to get to the devious Dr. Eggman.

I think I won the battle of the t-shirts this year, though only because no one saw Jay’s sparkly Tails sprite t-shirt until the end.

The Tails Doll made a spectacular return of course, Vger/Wentos was surprised with his forfeit, the Buzzbombers quiz proved very entertaining: if proving that T-Bird and Dreadknux are dirty liars and that Johnny Gioeli doesn’t know as much about Jun Senoue as he should. The Wrecks Factor Live had some rather rousing performances, including Mini-T surprising everybody with a heck of a performance of the Sonic Underground theme. An All-Stars Racing World Champion was crowned and people enjoyed playing 8 player networked games, Sonic 1, Sonic 2, Sonic Heroes, Sonic Unleashed and just generally interacting with other Sonic fans.

Okay, so the hermit crabs went up the spout. Yeah, considering how much effort it took to actually get hold of those my heartfelt thanks to you all for promptly nicking them all. :P

Oh yes, and HELLO – we had CRUSH FRIGGIN’ 40? Jun and Johnny had a superb Q&A hosted by T-Bird, which was actually very revealing. Jun treated everyone to some “Afternoon Tea”, a 20 minute individual set with the surprise addition of Sonic The Hedgehog 4 Japan Trip competition entrants Freya and The Divas singing Escape From The City before C40 TORE DOWN THE HOUSE with their set. Gotta say, as being partly responsible for writing that set it sounded great. I say sounded as I never got to see it. *Sob* Hey, someone had to start de-rigging everything. So where’s the YouTube videos guys? Some of us want to see. :(

More individual stories from the event to follow, including a video from Frobman we were not able to show due to the kit theft – we’ll let you know more on what happens with that. In the future I’ll also be asking you guys what you want for Summer of Sonic 2011 – yes, 2011. As if you missed myself and Svend’s last announcement its going to be held on the first Saturday after Sonic’s 20th Birthday on June 25th 2011! Have a think of what you might want, keep an eye out for the post then when we ask tell us what you’re after (besides the obvious… bigger, cooler, refreshments) that’ll go up Monday I think.

For now… I’m off to have a lie down and rest the laundry list of injuries I picked up.

Travel updates

Thursday, August 5th, 2010

First off I want to thank syaming-li for this awesome travel guide, this is more of an update from Vger’s earlier guide as there have been some changes to the underground maintance.

  • West London Line Overground: Sunday only: NO SERVICE BETWEEN RICHMOND AND STRATFORD. This means that Shepherds Bush cannot be accessed on the West London Line.
  • Hammersmith & City (Pink): NO SERVICE ON THIS LINE. Replacement Bus service: Hammersmith and Paddington, calling at Goldhawk Road, Shepherds Bush (Central), Latimer Road, Ladbroke Grove, Westbourne Park and Royal Oak.
  • Circle Line (Yellow): No service between Hammersmith and Edgware Road. (This was unannounced before and changed this weekend)
  • Jubilee Line (Grey/Silver): no service between Stanmore and Waterloo. Rail replacement buses operate. (extended from West Hampstead. The Jubilee Line is no unusable but is thankfully connected to other major lines [see guide!])
  • Metropolitan Line (Purple): Saturday 7 August, no service between Harrow-on-the-Hill and Aldgate. Rail replacement buses operate.
  • Waterloo & City Line (Aqua): Completely closed.

Jubilee Line’s maintenance has been extended across a few more stations, so now Waterloo becomes an obstacle, and Northern Line now no longer has any maintanance work going on, so it should be working as normal (slightly delayed and pretty warm.)
Thankfully, Waterloo is well connected on other lines, so please use the Northern (Black) and Bakerloo Line (Brown) lines Northbound from that station.

Stations Closed:

  • King’s Cross St. Pancras: Closed to Northern Line (Black) trains.
  • Latimer Road (Hammersmith & City Line): Closed westbound from Saturday 3 July until Saturday 4 December, inclusive. London Underground tickets are valid on any reasonable local London Bus route between Ladbroke Grove, Latimer Road, Wood Lane and Shepherd’s Bush Green.
  • Blackfriars; Circle (Yellow) and District (Green): Closed until late 2011. Please use Temple and Mansion House stations. Tickets are also accepted on bus 388 between Mansion House and Embankment.
  • Cannon Street; Circle (Yellow) and District (Green): Closed on Saturdays and Sundays until mid 2012. Please use nearby Bank, Mansion House or Monument stations. Cannon Street Overground should be operating as normal on weekends.

Station Maintenance: Please note that the following stations are not closed to the public, but building work will be taking place there, which will make navigating those stations take a little longer than usual;
Bank, Bound’s Green, Camden Town, Canary Wharf, Covent Garden, Heathrow Central (1,2,3), Marylebone, North Greenwich, Oxford Circus, Piccadilly Circus, Queensway, Tottenham Court Road, Warren Street, Waterloo.

If you’re going to and from the event on the day, you should be fine. But those of you who are staying for the weekend will notice that you will not be able to use the West London Line- at all, for the most part- on Sunday 8th August. If you need to get back, I suggest the following:

Watford Junction: Ignore all bus replacement services and those will take you out of the way. Instead take the regular 220 bus service (from outside The Pavilion) to Willesden Junction Station. You should be able to jump on a regular rail service from here to Watford Junction.

Clapham Junction: There should be a rail replacement service from Shepherd’s Bush Green. If you cannot find one, then jump on the 295 bus service, which should take you to Clapham Junction station.

For anyone using the tube- it is, in all basics AIM FOR THE RED LINE. It’s the only one that works! If you are stuck and need help with your travel stuff, feel free to ask me here, or PM me, or use my deviantART account to contact me, and I’ll be happy to aid you as quickly as I can. Everybody knows that one of the key components to having a good day is having an easy journey!

Need more information? A much bigger guide is available from his Summer of Sonic journal.

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The Summer of Sonic is a convention based in Central London, UK. Event created by Svend Joscelyne, presented by The Sonic Stadium and Sonic Wrecks. Supported by SEGA Europe and SPOnG. Attendees of all ages are welcome, but visitors under 15 years of age should be accompanied by a suitable parent or guardian - the organisers accept no responsibility for those attending the event. Anything brought in by attendees to showcase are the sole responsibility of their owners. Be careful when meeting strangers you know online elsewhere; The Summer of Sonic is a safe neutral location for fans of Sonic the Hedgehog to meet up. All content copyright © The Summer of Sonic 2010, fan content published is the copyright © of respective artists and fans. Sonic the Hedgehog and all related characters are copyright © SEGA. All Rights Reserved. Website powered by WordPress.