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This is a "Wild Mass Guess" entry, where we pull out all the sanity stops on theorizing. The regular entry on this topic is elsewhere. Please see this programme note.
Sonic 3 & Knuckles
Sonic & Knuckles is an unauthorized sequel.

  • Alledgedly, Sonic 3 was concieved as a standalone game, but far up north, two midgets somehow programmed a flawless imitation of Sonic's game engine and used it to create Sonic & Knuckles. They tried to pitch it to their boss, who thought it would never catch on. Fortunately, these two guys successfully sold the idea to Sega, and got rich off of it, despite Sonic Team taking credit for the game. A rare mini-documentary talking about it can be found here.

Amy could have been playable in these titles
She was meant to be playable in Sonic CD

Sonic's modern look and powers are side effects of turning Hyper Sonic.
As Hyper Sonic, his eyes turned green, just like his modern look. Sonic 4, taking place after this, is the first canon appearance of the modern look and the homing attack. The biggest evidence is that as Hyper Sonic, he could unleash a double jump attack the propelled him further and destroyed any minor enemies on screen, and with the general ability to direct his momentum, and now the boosting he's clearly growing in power.
  • As an add-on, exposure to Chaos energy is probably what turned his eyes green. The height could be explained by puberty.
    • The Archie comics confirmed this.
  • This also explains Eggman's growth spurt between this game and Sonic 4, despite being an adult. In Doomsday Zone, you ram his final robot to destroy it and win the game. Eggman somehow absorbed some of Sonic's energy from the hits, causing him to grow.

The asteroids in the Doomsday Zone are chunks of earth and pieces of the Sky Sanctuary that the Death Egg kicked up during its ascent.
How else does one explain asteroids in orbit above the earth?

In the Special Stages everytime you do the Orb Turns Into Rings thing someone is getting hit and losing rings.
Exactly what it says on the tin
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