Hey there! I’m Tom’s best friend, Kyle, and just like him, I was a big fan of Sonic the Hedgehog games. Well, actually, I USED to be… I stopped being a fan of those games because of that one other game… I can’t remember… I think it had something to do with… God? Yeah, maybe. Not the good kind, though.Anyway, it all started with me having some fun with good old Sonic Adventure when I heard a doorbell noise on the front door. I paused the game to take a look at who it was at my door. There was no-one there, but instead, there was a single package, and it had a little piece of paper attached that said “A gift from God, to you.””Hmm… that’s weird…” I thought to myself. “I know there is such a thing as ‘A gift from God’, but I didn’t think he would ACTUALLY send me a gift… right?” I shrugged to myself later and brought the package inside.I opened it up with a pair of scissors after getting near my computer. Inside was a CD, perfectly unharmed nor scratched in anyway possible. On the back of it, there was a clean piece of writing in marker that said “SONIC” in all caps. I raised an eyebrow, and thought, “Wait… didn’t I get that game before for my Genesis? I mean, that’s a nice offer to give to me, but really, I don’t really need it again… Eh, why not? Let’s give this baby another try.” And I smiled with confidence as I put the CD in my computer.A window opened up, and it only showed one file that was named SONIC, in all caps like the writing on the CD. Being curious about that file, I decided to right-click on it and go to properties. It said it was an application (.EXE), and had no info about it, all being question marks. The other tabs were locked as well, so I couldn’t figure out what to do with it. Not like I would’ve wanted to edit the file, anyway.I decided to open up the file in full-screen mode.As soon as it appeared, the title screen appeared with good ol’ Sonic on the right, and his sidekick, Tails next to him, both in orange background. One word in a font I couldn’t recognize said SONIC and below that were two words in Times New Roman that said respectively “Press Start”, and the whole screen had cheery music.I thought later, “Hmm… a homebrew? I didn’t know there was a homebrew featuring Sonic… I wonder what this game’s about… Let’s check this thing out!”As told, I pressed Start, but unfortunately, I also saw a disturbing image for a split-second, and heard the screen make a static noise at the same time. It later cut black.I couldn’t remember what it was, but it seemed to be more corrupted with bloody red colors. That kinda made me want to cringe.”What the?” I told myself. “Was it somehow hacked or something? This is creeping me out…”A little later, in the bottom right corner, I saw blue text in yellow outline that said “Now Loading…”. I was guessing the first level would’ve taken some time to be built. I waited for a few seconds for the level to load, and another disturbing image appeared on my screen that looked like a red demonic Sonic for a split second, and then the title card appeared, having read “Not Special Act 0”.Sonic appeared later on grass like in Green Hill Zone, but the background, oddly, was all pitch black.On the opposite side of Sonic, there was a huge ring, but it wasn’t solid gold, like in the original. It was actually sort-of white/grayish.I tried to find a few hidden rings, monitors, anything that would help me before I enter the grey ring by moving Sonic to the right, and then to the left. Nothing. Not even a secret path. I then moved Sonic next to the gray ring, and then made him jump into it.The screen faded into white, and then into a space-age background I couldn’t recognize, with incredibly distorted music. Then Sonic appear on 4 peppermint blocks, which made me realize I’m in a Special Stage like the ones in first Sonic the Hedgehog. I made him hop immediately to the right, and did it again to keep him in balance. The blocks kept spinning to the left, so I had to hop Sonic onto them again, but unfortunately, gravity physics shifted me ahead to a goal wall. The whole stage spun normally for a few seconds, but stopped abruptly, corrupting the whole game’s palettes and causing an incredibly loud static! The background turned red and Sonic and the goal spheres turned into a green and blue mess, and what’s even more tragic, I heard a tragic scream that possibly came from a Disney character!After a few seconds of that awful first act, the background turned to red static for a split-second, and the whole screen blacked out into another “Now Loading…” text on the bottom right, but this time, it was more green than blue and yellow, possibly from that corruption earlier.”Oh my gosh…” I gasped. “Why would you do such a thing to this precious hedgehog?! Just why… Wow. Okay, let’s see who I’m controlling next…”There was no disturbing image, like before, a few seconds later. Another title card appeared, but it had no zone name. Instead, it just had “Act 1”.To my surprise, Sonic appeared on Chemical Plant background, associated with a background that looked similar to the SEGA CD startup and slower Green Hill music. What I didn’t notice was that he had 3 lives to start with, according to his life counter on the bottom left corner, and just lost one after that first level, now only having 2 lives left. I observed the level on my screen, and I noticed on the right a monitor with speed shoes inside.I made Sonic crouch and spin-dash to the monitor, crashing it and going faster along the way. But unfortunately, he crashed into a few more speed-shoe monitors, going faster and faster. What worried me now was that the music was going so fast it got out of sync, and then a few seconds later, Sonic crashed into a wall of spikes with a load *SPLAT!!* That knocked me out of my chair, but I got back up quickly. Sonic’s lives were down to 1, and a lot of blood was dripping from the spikes, and the background and ground were melting… poor Sonic…After a few tragic seconds of blood dripping, a white Sonic appeared for a split-second, then cut to the same “Now Loading…” screen, but now it’s a bit distorted as well, with a new color of purple. It even glitched itself out a couple of times while it was loading the next act. Gosh, did I want to cry.