Out of nowhere, former head of Sonic Team Yuji Naka has confirmed that Michael Jackson did in fact have a hand in the creation of the Sonic 3 soundtrack - following years of SEGA officially denying his involvement. Since Michael Jackson’s involvement was never formally confirmed, Yugi Naka has basically confirmed one of the biggest rumours surrounding the franchise.
This casual confirmation came via Yuji Naka’s own twitter account, where he expressed shock at the change in soundtrack in the classic Sega platformer. This, as you can imagine, has left plenty of gaming trivia heads, speculators, or just plain old fans of the fastest hedgehog in gaming stunned.
Oh my god, the music for Sonic 3 has changed, even though SEGA Official uses Michael Jackson's music.— Yuji Naka / 中 裕司 (@nakayuji) June 23, 2022
The reason all of this is popping up now is thanks to the recent release of Sonic Origins. This compilation of classic Sonic titles features many retro titles belonging to the series - including Sonic 3. However, Sega previously confirmed that the version of Sonic 3 present in this collection would not have its original music.
Our very own assistant editor Alex Donaldson wrote about why the original music would be absent from Sonic 3 earlier this month, and as you might be able to guess, the crimes Michael Jackson was accused of during the development on Sonic 3 back in the 90s resulted in his contributions being downplayed and removed completely in future version of the game.
By the time that feature was published, those invested in the mystery had found a prototype of the game featuring original music tracks that didn’t make it to the official release. This, in the mind of those investigating the topic, was Michael’s contribution. All that was left was an official confirmation from SEGA, and the case would have been essentially cracked.
All this is what makes Yuji Naka’s tweet so spectacular - as it suddenly confirms the suspicion that fans had been digging at for years totally out of nowhere. It’s a bizarre conclusion to one of gaming’s most intriguing celebrity stories - thrown out there randomly on social media.
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