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Sonic Adventure: JP 1998 VS 1999 International


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You probably all know the early release history of Sonic Adventure already, right?

...well, for those few people who may not:

Sonic Adventure was first released in Japan in December 1998. It was finally released 9 months later across the rest of the world...but it wasn't the exact same game that Japan got.

The original 1998 release was a slightly less polished game that had a few extra bugs here and there amoung other differences. The worldwide release fixed a few of these bugs, added certain features...and removed a couple too. This updated release was also released in Japan under the title "Sonic Adventure International".

This is where we try to document all these differences.

First the features:

-The original only contained a Japanese voice track and Japanese subtitles. The international version added the English voice track and subtitles, as well as subtitles in other languages (French, Spanish, etc.)

-Compatibility with the Dreamcasts internet functionality.

Cosmetic Differences:

-The most well-known of the cosmetic changes is the neon cowgirl.

(The international version, including the Japanese rerelease and all subsiquent ports, replaced it with a generic sign).

Misc glitches/cutscene kwirks:

-In the cutscene where Gamma releases Amy from the prison cell on the Egg Carrier, the giant botton he presses doesn't push down, instead his hands go straight through it. In the international version this is fixed. The original version of the cutscene can briefly be seen in one of the Japanese commercials.

Apparently there are other cutscene kwirks that occur in the Japanese game, but I've not seen or heard of any other examples.

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The original version also had motion blur applied to Sonic's top-speed running animation, sort of like how the Classic games did it. Kinda hard to find a video of it, but you can probably see it around 6:40 in this video:

 

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Ah, I even noticed a couple of cutscene differences in that clip too.

-The shot of Sonic on top of the police car zooms in a lot faster than it does in later versions.

-The close-up shot of Tails in the plane is at a different angle and you can actually see his worried expression.

-Sonic's "Watch out, you're gonna crash, AHHH!" expression changes to...a shocked smile(?), instead of just turning back to his normal face.

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Original Japanese:

- The camera works differently to the other versions of the game. (It's hard to describe. I think it's a lot looser and easier for it to clip through things)

- There are lots of different camera angles such as this or these two.

- The Level list in Trial mode is ordered by the internal IDs of the levels rather than the order they're played in.

- Sonic has a blur effect around his feet when running. (You can see this in Goin' Down pretty well. You can also see it in the credits to Generations too.)

- There's no Emblem results menu.

- The lip syncing is slightly different. (Limited Edition also has this)

- You can stand on the burger guy's head.

- No Language options.

- Cowgirl.

- The title screen is completely static. It doesn't even have an animated "Press Start" text.

- Two Omochao in the racing stadium are in slightly different positions to the other versions. Ironically, the changed version actually lets you clip through the side of the door, making that one the more buggier version.

- No Ball counter in Casinopolis' Pinball games.

- This path in Lost World is narrower.

- Two springs at the bottom of Final Egg 2 are placed differently.

 

International:

- All the changes from the US version have been carried over.

- Title is animated and has an added part saying "International".

- Some bugs have been fixed. Notably collision-related ones: For example, you can't jump into Big's sewer area as Sonic in this version.

- The burger guy rebels now. You can't use him to clip through the Emerald Coast gate because he slides up the stairs when you put him down.

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