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There is a giant Sonic statue lurking in the woods in Japan. "Location published on Page 4"

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1 minute ago, Tracker said:

No. Don't go bugging the dude. That's the last thing I want folks nagging him about.

Dude's a regular biker who saw something cool and he's already replied to one chap saying he can't remember exactly where he saw it. 

Aw, darn. oh well, guess all we have is the images he took to get an idea of where it is exactly.

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Huh.

I find it hard to believe that this is something that has been around from the classic era. As rabid as this fanbase is at times, there is no way something like this could get lost to history for 20 odd years without anybody saying anything.

This has to be the remnants of something much more recent. Possibly a promotional item for Gens, or one of the re-releases of the past few years. I'd put money on it.

Still pretty cool though. I swear if I had a flat bed truck and lived in Japan, that thing would already be in my backyard. Someone should give those Sega peeps a heads up before someone over there gets the same itch I got right now.

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4 minutes ago, Sega DogTagz said:

.

I find it hard to believe that this is something that has been around from the classic era. As rabid as this fanbase is at times, there is no way something like this could get lost to history for 20 odd years without anybody saying anything.

This has to be the remnants of something much more recent. Possibly a promotional item for Gens, or one of the re-releases of the past few years. I'd put money on it.

 

Someone on retro says that it dates back to at least 2009?

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So I had an idea. 

This guy doesn't remember the exact location right? Well... we can probably figure it out. How? He tweets a lot. So let's do some actual detective work Detective SSMB.

Check out all the tweets from December 20th. Odds are we can find clues as to the location which might narrow it down for Google Street view or a possible location based on the images.

(Road sign on this one)

He also has a youtube channel and uploads his rides. There might be a video of the statue.

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCGl-2aIMsL_3C3k_Imq7WUQ/videos

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3 hours ago, Sega DogTagz said:

If memory serves correctly, 2009 was a big year for those compilation games. I think genesis collection came out that year for one and there were a lot of VC games too. 

Maybe this got put out in 2008 to promote those?

Again, rule Generations or anything current out its been known about since at least 2009 but from the weathering it looks like it dates back allot farther then that, SEGA Japan first stopped using Classic Sonic as a main promotional tool back in 1998 when Dreamcast era Sonic took over so we can assume its at least from 1997.

And no(?) you won't find anything much on his Youtube, I already checked the video of the bike he was riding and saw no real hints but I don't know Japanese so what hes saying is another matter but mainly from my guess it sounds like allot of Bike Talk.

@Mikyeong would be the only one to tell us since shes our only resident Japanese to English translator atm. I'm gonna follow that lead Black Squirrel found on Retro I suggest someone doing the streetview thing Tracker suggested.

EDIT: From the tweet times, this tweet was the closest from the Sonic tweet Moriyuki took:
https://twitter.com/250moriyuki/status/678494980340473856

He ended up in 'Soni Village'. so its a route that leads to Soni Village.

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http://yaplog.jp/konrmk1971/archive/285#ct

This was the blog post Black Squirrel found, @Mikyeong Is their anything on this page that would grant us a clue as to where he is exactly? Google Translate isn't helping too much but it sounds like the blog poster was just as confused back then but I'm thinking maybe 1 of the 4 comments may hold something.

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3 minutes ago, goku262002 said:

From a quick wikipedia search its a little remote town in the mountains. from the looks of it, it gets some tourism from the fact its nearby allot of popular mountains and a river.

@Soni, I dare you to go there 1 of these days lol.

Bruh, don't even.

I ain't gonna grind crap to get the Soni Armour despite how OP it is.

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On 31.12.2015 at 0:54 AM, Sega DogTagz said:

If memory serves correctly, 2009 was a big year for those compilation games. I think genesis collection came out that year for one and there were a lot of VC games too. 

Maybe this got put out in 2008 to promote those?

Sonic's Ultimate Genesis Collection was released in 2009.

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Edit: I just wrote a huge post with some information, however thanks to an annoying new forum feature I've lost that now, so here is the abridged version.

If someone can cross post this at retro since we both seem to be looking for this but we're not sharing information at the moment and I think we might be able to find this thing or at least try and agree on a search location.

What we Know

So the biker made a number of tweets on December 20th, some of which gave clues to his route. 

https://twitter.com/250moriyuki/status/678441153167884288 This one has a few road signs by the side of the road.

https://twitter.com/250moriyuki/status/678494980340473856 In this tweet he mentions Soni village and the Mie Prefecture as well as a ride time of 3 hours long.

====================

EDIT: Don't take the map seriously, google messed up, I didn't realise the Mie Prefecture was so huge, this map is VERY misleading.

However if you check google, they estimate it should only take around 1.5 hours if you go by the motorway/highway, suggesting he must have taken scenic routes.

hThNQcq.png

===================

Now nearly a week later he made another tweet which I found very interesting.

https://twitter.com/250moriyuki/status/681355281381470208 On December 28th he posted this image which contains a map! Now yes this is over a week later, but notice he's riding around the same region. Meaning a lot of these pics have got to at least be around the same area, this can help us narrow down the search. in his description he says How many times repeated the comings and goings of Mie and Nara

I think he's making this trip/riding around this area a lot meaning most of his pics are probably from around the same area. 

We also have the blog from 2009. http://yaplog.jp/konrmk1971/archive/285#ct And again, the guy who ran that blog says he's into driving/bike. 

So I checked the blog for posts around the date of the post which has the image,

http://yaplog.jp/konrmk1971/monthly/200904/

These are the posts but I don't see any clues, anyone else want to try? 

We also know that this has been there since at least 2009, however I am more than certain it's been there for A LOT longer, basing that of the condition of the statue in the pic and the fact that there was no major game being promoted then.

 

So where do we search?

We know that it's in the Mie Prefecture, we also have from the bikers tweet the mention of the Soni village, so it's likely an area between the two. 

However, given the time it took this guy to ride from Mie to Soni, he must have taken a rural route, this is further supported by the pics he took. 

Also, given how this has been there for at least 6 years (possibly a lot more), it MUST be in a very very rural route, we're talking the only people who take it are bikers and people who are on vacation out to enjoy the scenery. This isn't a popular route or a route which is taken by tourists on trips, certainly not foreign ones.

If it were... frankly we would have so many more photos of this and we'd have found out about it years ago. 

So we don't want to be searching major routes, we want to be searching for bike friendly routes or ones which take a longer time to reach a destination. Off motorways/highways.

 

What do we do when we find it?

Ok, we're hoping that google street view has this somewhere in its database. Which is our primary search tool right now. 

That's great but... what happens when we find it? Do we openly post the information? Or wait until someone who can visit it can go an take some high def pics of it? 

This is the reason why.... The Wicker Man's Legs.

Basically, I'm slightly concerned that once it's found and we say 'it's here!' unless we can find someone to go for us in that moment, there is a time limit between when someone of interest in documentation finds it, and someone who is more interested in vandalising it or even stealing it. The moment we give detailed instructions on where it is, some people are going to go to it and odds are one day it will be vandalised or even removed. 

Do we take that risk? Or withhold that information until someone can go check it out?

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This is a public forum, so the minute someone posts the location its all over twitter that then thats it, so if we are going to keep the location a secret until we can someone like @Mikyeong go and check out the statue for us, we can't post anything about the location whatsoever.

I'll go ahead and crosspost that on Retro.
but Overlord made in interesting point:
 

Quote

 

A quick search on Streetview for roads in Mie prefecture - even limiting it to Nabari - reveal it's something of a needle in a haystack. We're going to need some more info if we've got any chance of finding this.

 

It does look like an Expressway though, here's an example of the E368:

https://www.google.co.uk/maps/@34.6027703,136.1698894,3a,75y,235.29h,73.45t/

 

(drag and drop onto it)

 

So we need to find a road thats commonly used by motorcyclists but its also scenic, he was out there to not only test the endurance of his bike in those mountainous conditions but to do some scenic driving.

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Got a reply back From Overlord:
 

Quote

 

Most of that's sensible but I'm not so sure on the avoid-major-roads thing - if you look at a lot of Japanese minor roads they're single track, and the one in the shot plainly isn't.

 

CWp_8NJUEAAK2u0.jpg:large

It does look like it's by a valley or large dip, so a road that runs around the edge of one?


A very good point there about keeping the location secret if it IS found - I suggest if anyone does somehow luck onto it they PM staff about it rather than post publicly, at least until such time as we can figure out what to do with the information.

So its agreed we'll keep it secret at Retro if we do find it.

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15 hours ago, Chris Knopps said:

Just noticed the string behind the statue.

A banner probably used to hang there for an event.

But weird... They took the banner but left the statue...?

Given the evident age of the statue, it's possible that any banner was damaged and blown away long ago.  Alternatively, it was easier to remove the banner than the statue, and they never got around to the latter.

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