The Sonic Archives is an ongoing series of graphic novels published by Archie Comics featuring reprints of stories from the main Sonic the Hedgehog comic series. They are typically collected in a four-issue format, whereas each volume contains four full issues of the selected Sonic the Hedgehog comics. However, there are several volumes that contain only three or even less. Since being published, the series has inspired to branch out into Knuckles the Echidna archives.
List of Sonic Archives volumes
- The series was launched to coincide with Sonic's 15th Anniversary in 2006.
- The covers for the series are drawn in the style of the classic Japanese Sega Sonic illustrations. Archie Comics-exclusive characters, such as the Freedom Fighters, while keeping their distinctive look, are slightly altered to resemble the Animals in the games, of which they are based (For example, Sally is made to resemble Ricky). Many other cameos and Easter-eggs relating to the classic games are also present on these covers, such as backdrop designs being based heavily on levels from the games, and the inclusion of the original Japanese design of Eggman appearing in some form (though Robotnik himself retains his comic and Sonic the Hedgehog design).
- Despite the transition to the modern "Sonic Adventure" era from Volume 19 onwards, the cover art still retains the classic Japanese Sega art style from previous covers. However elements of characters modern day looks are still added: Sonic has been given his green eyes, updated shoes, and made taller, while overall he still resembles his classic look. Interestingly, this also allows game characters who did not exist in the classic era to appear in this style, for example, Big the Cat appears on the cover of Volume 21, drawn in the same style, the first time this has ever been seen in any official media.
- A number of canon discrepancies are included on the Sonic the Hedgehog Archives covers as the result of artistic license. For example, Buns Rabbot appears on the cover of Volume 6 despite not appearing in the comics until issue Sonic the Hedgehog #151.
- There are at least two editions of Sonic Archives Vol. 1 and 2. The originals were printed with glossy covers and the newer versions had updated the back page with an extended list of the entries in the series.
- Volumes 13, 17, 22 and 23 are currently the only volumes to include stories from other Archie Sonic titles outside the main series. Being dedicated entirely to the finale of Endgame, Volume 13 contains the "Directors Cut" edition of Sonic the Hedgehog #50 as printed in Sonic Super Special #6, "Down and Out in Downunda" from Sonic Super Special #4, and "Total Re:Genesis" from Sonic Super Special #5. Volume 17 contains "Spin City" from Sonic Super Special #15 as an extra feature. Volume 22 includes all of Sonic Super Special #13 as part of the Sonic Adventure storyline. And finally, Volume 23 features "Best of Times, Worst of Times" from Sonic Super Special #14.
- If you can look closely at the cover-art (for volumes 1-18) you can see that Sonic's eyes are brown. This is actually correct due to the amount of issues showing Sonic's eyes either black or brown. Some of the issues that mention back to older issues prior to Sonic's transformation have Sonic with brown eyes.
- Several volumes covers show the events of the comics in the volume:
- Volume 0 features Sally's three forms.
- Volume 7 features Sonic racing against Metal Sonic, which is chronicled in that volume in StH #25.
- Volume 10 features Sonic turning into Mecha Sonic on the cover.
- Volume 12 shows Sonic running away in chains, setting in the events between StH #47 through StH #50.
- Volume 13 is based on the last panel on StH #50.
- Volume 19 features Sonic's redesign in the comic series.
- Volume 20 features Eggman's redesign.
- Volume 22 features Super Sonic and Knuckles facing Perfect Chaos, which is chronicled in StH #83.