The Sonic Nazo Sage is an ongoing series of Flash animations by animator Chakra-X that were first uploaded in 2004. There are four entries in the series to date, with more coming in the future. They all, in some format, revolve around the character, Nazo, a mysterious hedgehog-like being who's based on an odd picture of Super Sonic in the pilot advertisement for the anime, Sonic X. Said image was titled, "Nazo.jpg". Nazo, in Japanese, means "mystery" of "mysterious" which further added to the mysterious nature of the character. In all of his appearances, he has been portrayed as a villain.
Sonic: The Power of Nazo Edit
The Power of Nazo is the first rendition of Chakra X's story, which premiered in 2004. It is an eight-minute flash animation that tells the tale of Nazo, a being made of negative Chaos Energy looking to absorb as much power as possible to become as powerful as possible. It features several crudely-animated fight scenes that resemble those of Dragon Ball Z, a direct inspiration, according to Chakra X himself.
The flash animation itself receive fair amounts of critical praise for it's quality and preference of frame-by-frame techniques over tweens and other shortcuts.
The movie is unique in that it had no voice acting, aside from a single line spoken near the beginning bythe character, Knuckles. Instead, all the speech is displayed as colour-coded text near the character who's supposed to be speaking.
The creator would eventually go on to remake this animation with higher production values.
Sonic: Nazo Unleashed Edit
Nazo Unleashed was a 3-episode remake of the original Power of Nazo movie, uploaded in 2006. The remake greatly upped the quality of the original and included voice acting. The voices were made up of spliced lines taken from the video games, with the exception of Nazo himself, whom was voiced by Edwyn Tiong, a prolific indie voice actor from Australia.
The plot is identical to the previous animation barring a few new additions. That aside, the animation itself has been cleaned up and overhauled, forcing the movie to be divided into 3 segments that totalled out at about thirty-two minutes.
This animation would go on to be one of the most critically acclaimed Sonic-related flashes on Newgrounds for it's quality alone. Chakra-X was frequently requested, by fans to make a sequel, which he initially turned down. However, in 2015, he announced that he would be crowd-funding a sequel on Patreon.
Special Edition Edit
In 2009, Chakra-X began uploading segments of the third episode to Youtube under the title, "Sonic: Nazo Unleashed Special Edition". These uploads were slightly modified versions of the original flash that contained new special effects as well as trivia blurbs in the form of the Youtube annotations. After uploading two segments to Youtube, he quietly cancelled the idea, leaving only the third episode updated. Interestingly, he planned to upload the episodes in reverse order, starting off with the third episode.
Director's Cut Edit
While his plans for the Special Edition didn't work out, he came back in 2014 with Sonic: Nazo Unleashed DX. This version, considered by many fans to be the definitive version, is rescaled and remastered in HD, contains newer special effects, and contains all three episodes mashed together into a single, half-hour movie. The positive reception of this reupload is rumored to be the cause behind Chakra-X deciding to do a sequel.
Sonic: Wrath of Nazo Edit
Wrath of Nazo is an upcoming multi-episode flash animation by Chakra-X that was announced in late 2015 and is currently being funded via Patreon.
Not too much is known about this particular film beyond what was already told to us by Chakra-X himself.
It is known that the animation will be a large step up from the previous entry, being much more fluid and active. Characters will be more humorous and talkative than before, as well as now possessing a full-on voice cast, with Tiong reprising his role as Nazo. While the previous animations used music from the Sonic games, this one, however will be using an original score. Also worth noting, is that the animation will be less influenced by Dragon Ball Z than its predecessor was.
The plot will revolve around Nazo being resurrected by Dr. Eggman. Not much else is known about that. What is known, however, is that Nazo will not be trying to gain power like before, and that he will be gaining it right from the start, and that Sonic and his friends need to find a way to put an end to it.
The film will not be as long as the previous entry, totaling at only about 15 minutes in length. While Chakra-X had initially slated the film for full release in 2019, he he later decided to segment the film like the previous one in order to lessen the wait for fans, with a projected 2018 release date, at least for the first part. However, as of March 2018, he decided to retract the projected release date, as the project proved a bit too strenuous when under a deadline.
Other Projects Edit
While Chakra-X is known as the forefather of the series, several other animators have tried their hands at making a sequel to his work.
Sonic: The Return of Nazo Edit
Return of Nazo was a shortlived sprite "animation" that was uploaded to Youtube in 2007. It is notable in that it was one of the first of its kind and garnered decent amounts of attention. In this two-part movie, Nazo spontaneously respawns and and goes on a hunt for the Chaos Emeralds once more. Notable for having several illogical discrepancies, such as the presence of characters, Manic and Sonia from Sonic Underground as well as Silver and Blaze, along with various goofy sound effects ripped from old Warner Bros. cartoons. Despite its attention, it was otherwise panned for its lack of quality, as well as the use of Windows Movie Maker as opposed to Adobe Flash.
Sonic: Nazo Returns Edit
This was a cancelled project made by Fernistudios. Intended to be a fully-voiced sequel to the original film, it fell underway when it proved to be too much of an undertaking for Ferni. What does exist of it is a title screen as well as a brief opening. Following the title screen, the opening consists of Eggman resurrecting Nazo, who returns the favour by killing the Doctor. The scene jumps to the main characters at the beach, where Nazo spontaneously appears, shocking everyone. The movie ends following Nazo's only line, and gives previews of future events, had it not been cancelled. Fernistudios has shown interest in continuing the film, but it's unlikely it will happen. It has received praise for it's overall presentation, but has also received sharp criticism on the voice quality, general lack of pacing, and unfinished state.
Sonic: The Return Of Nazo Edit
This is a fully completed project by SolarFoxProductions with Chakra-X's own approval. The animation is of decent quality, and voice acting is absent. The plot follows Eggman reviving Nazo and fitting him with cybernetic implants to enhance his skills. Sonic and Shadow must, once more, defeat the newly powered-up Nazo before he wreaks havoc on the Earth. Similar to the original Power of Nazo film, this one lacks dialogue, instead opting for colour-coded text to appear on-screen. (Similar to the Super Mario Bros. Z series by Alvin-Earthworm) The flash is notable for having the approval and admiration of Chakra-X, himself, who is said to enjoy the concept and story, and states that, if he were to make a Nazo sequel, that he'd go in the same route as SolarFox. The animation is among the most popular of the Nazo sequels with over 10 million views across the internet, being praised for it's premise, animation quality, and story, while also receiving criticism for it's length and lack of voice acting.
- Chakra-X actually works on high-profile cartoons, such as DreamWorks' Turbo F.A.S.T. on Netflix.
- Edwyn Tiong, also known by his alias, Omahdon, has become quite a prolific voice actor in many video games since his appearance in Nazo Unleashed.
- The new voice cast for the Wrath of Nazo consists of:
- Spiritoftheblue as Sonic the Hedgehog
- Theblueeyedfox as Miles "Tails" Prower
- Mickwhitefire28 as Knuckles the Echidna
- Connor McKinley as Shadow the Hedgehog
- Kyle Boyle as Dr. Eggman
- and Edwyn Tiong (a.k.a. Omahdon) reprises his role as Nazo from the previous installment
- The archival voice recordings in Nazo Unleashed are taken from various Sonic games. These consist of:
- Ryan Drummond as Sonic [Clips taken from Sonic Adventure, Sonic Adventure 2, and Sonic Heroes]
- Michael McGaham and Scott Dreier as Knuckles [Clips taken from Sonic Adventure 1 and 2]
- Corey Bringas as Tails [Clips taken from Sonic Adventure]
- David Humphrey and Jason Griffith as Shadow [Taken from Sonic Adventure 2, Sonic Heroes, and Shadow the Hedgehog]
- Elara Distler as Tikal [Taken from Sonic Adventure]
- Jennifer Douillard as Amy [Unknown source]
- and Deam Bristow as Dr. Eggman [Taken from Sonic Adventure]
- Interestingly, of all the actors listed, Shadow is the only character to use a voice actor from a different lineup.