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Sonic R (2004)

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Sonic R
Sonic R cover
Traveller's Tales
Release dates
Windows 2004
Sonic R (2004) guide on StrategyWiki
Sonic R (2004) on Wikipedia
Sonic the Hedgehog
Sonic CD (1996) 1996
Sonic's Schoolhouse 1996
Sonic 3D Blast 1997
Sonic & Knuckles Collection 1997
Sonic R (1998) 1998
Sonic R (2004) 2004
Sonic Adventure (series)
Sonic Heroes 2004
Sonic Mega Collection Plus 2006
Sonic Riders 2006
Sonic Racing (series)
Sonic 3D Blast (2010) 2010
Sonic the Hedgehog 2010
Dr. Robotnik's Mean Bean Machine 2010
Sonic Spinball 2010
Sonic the Hedgehog 2 2011
Sonic 3 & Knuckles 2011
Sonic Generations 2011
Sonic CD (2012) 2012
Sonic the Hedgehog 4: Episode I 2012
Sonic the Hedgehog 4: Episode II 2012
Sonic Dash 2014
Sonic Lost World 2015
Sonic Mania 2017
Sonic Forces 2017

This page is for the rare 2004 re-release. For the original 1998 release, see Sonic R (1998).

Key points

Improved compatibility with newer operating systems with a larger modding community than the 1998 version.
The network mode is almost completely removed.
The graphics settings menu is made inaccessible and when manually accessed, many functions are disabled.

General information

Sonic News Network - A massive wiki for the Sonic the Hedgehog universe
Sonic Retro - A huge fan site for everything Sonic the Hedgehog.


Source DRM Notes Keys OS
Disc check (requires the CD/DVD in the drive to play)
Use launch command "ignorecd" or install Sonic R Updater to bypass disc check.
This game is not available digitally.
This port is exceedingly rare and release information is poorly documented. It is currently thought that it has been released only in Portugal, UK and Australia. Copies of it are also not clearly labeled, instead appearing as a reprint of the original 1998 game.[1]
It is possible to upgrade the 1998 version to this 2004 re-release with by using Sonic R Updater.

Essential improvements[edit]

Sonic R Updater[edit]

Fixes a runtime error that causes poor frame-rate on modern hardware, removes the disc check, adds modding support thanks to Sonic R Mod Loader, custom resolutions and widescreen support, windowed/borderless fullscreen modes, and loading music from the installation folder instead of the disc.
How to install Sonic R Updater[2]
  1. Install Sonic R from the disc or copy the contents of the disc to a convenient location on your computer.
  2. Download Sonic R Updater from the link above or its Github page.
  3. Run sonic_r_updater_*.exe and follow its instructions. If the patcher does not auto-detect the game's installation folder, point it to <path-to-game> manually.
  4. Adjust graphics settings from the Graphics tab of Sonic R Mod Loader and enable desired mods from the Mods tab, then click Save & Play to save your settings and launch the game.

Featured mods[edit]

Some of the featured mods are included with Sonic R Updater.
Included in Sonic R Updater[edit]
  • ADX Music - A mod to use more efficient looping ADX format audio for music instead, opting for improved version of tracks from the Sega Saturn version in some cases.
  • RemoveStrays - A fix for various graphical bugs tied to how the game maps textures for the user interface.
  • Sega Saturn Style Colors - A mod that fixes and restores vertex colors. This makes the game look more lively and colorful than it did before, as well as more accurate to the Saturn version. Additionally it makes Radiant Emerald translucent like it's Saturn counterpart.
  • EggRobo Texture Fix - Fixes a texture error where EggRobo's gun shows part of Tail's eye.
Additional notable mods[edit]
  • Widescreen Assets - Readjusts and crops the original 4:3 GUI assets to properly fit in 16:9 instead of stretching them. This also fixes banner in menus so they don't abruptly cut off when playing in widescreen.
  • Resort Island Fix - Fixes out-of-place floormaps of Resort Island.
  • Gems Collection Textures - Ports over the textures featured in the Sonic Gems Collection version of the game.
  • Music R - A mod that changes most if not all of the music in the game.
  • Gentle Ring Sound - Replaces the loud and grating stock ring pick-up sound effect from the 2004 version that can cause audio clipping issues with a softer, sound-balanced one.
  • Improved SFX - A sound effects enhancement mod that replaces the default sound effects with higher quality ones.
  • Sonic 3D Blast Sounds - Replaces the default sound effects with ones from the Sega Saturn version of Sonic 3D Blast.

Game data[edit]

Configuration file(s) location[edit]

System Location
Windows <path-to-game>\sonicr.inf[Note 1]

Save game data location[edit]

System Location
Windows <path-to-game>\save\[Note 1]
Saves are stored in <path-to-game>\save
Time Attack Ghosts are stored in <path-to-game>\ghost
Recorded Replay Demos are stored in <path-to-game>\bin\demos

Video settings[edit]

Graphics feature State Notes
Widescreen resolution
See Sonic R Updater.
See Sonic R Updater.
4K Ultra HD
See Sonic R Updater.
Field of view (FOV)
See Sonic R Updater.
Borderless fullscreen windowed
See Sonic R Updater.
Anisotropic filtering (AF)
See the glossary page for potential workarounds.
Anti-aliasing (AA)
Force in GPU control panel or use Sonic R Updater for SSAA. Set display mode to Windowed Fullscreen, then select 2x Native resolution.
Vertical sync (Vsync)
Always on by default.
60 FPS and 120+ FPS
Game is capped at 30 FPS.
High dynamic range display (HDR)

Input settings[edit]

Input settings
Input settings

Controller support[edit]

To use XInput-based controllers, using XInput Plus is required.
Use XInput Plus[3]
  1. Download and run XInput Plus.
  2. Set the Target Program to Sonic R.exe.
  3. Go to the Key Assign tab, then go to Left Stick and assign it to Multiple Key, then check Left Stick and DPAD.
  4. Go to the DirectInput tab, and check Enable DirectInput Output, then go to its Advanced sub-section tab then click Detect under DeviceID to identify each controller for multiplayer by following the on-screen instructions.
  5. Click Customize, then assign Left/Right Trigger as Button 7/8, Back/Start as Button 9/10, Left/Right Stick Button as Button 11/12, and Guide button as Button 13.
  6. Click Apply to save settings and install DLLs into the installation folder. The game should be able to register XInput D-pad and analog triggers as DirectInput buttons.

Audio settings[edit]

Sound settings
Sound settings
Audio feature State Notes
Separate volume controls
Music volume is new to the 2004 port.
Surround sound
Game audio is always stereo.
Closed captions
Mute on focus lost
Sonic R Updater changes this so the music is audible when focus is lost due to bass_vgmstream support being added.


Multiplayer types

Type Native Players Notes
Local play
2 Versus
LAN play
Online play
Asynchronous multiplayer

Issues fixed[edit]

Game runs at unstable frame-rate on modern hardware[edit]

Patch the game with Sonic R Updater.[4]

Other information[edit]


Technical specs Supported Notes
Direct3D 7, 9 For Direct3D 9 support, install Sonic R Updater.
Shader Model support 2
Executable 32-bit 64-bit Notes

Change Draw Distance[edit]

Use hidden hotkeys[5]
Reportedly has unlimited draw distance valves compared to the 1998 version, however, increasing the draw distance above 6 can cause minor transparency graphical bugs with shield power-ups.

Use F1 to decrease draw distance or F2 to increase it.

System requirements[edit]

Minimum Recommended
Operating system (OS) 95, 98, ME, XP
Processor (CPU) Intel Pentium 90 MHz
System memory (RAM) 16 MB
Hard disk drive (HDD) 20 MB
Video card (GPU) DirectX 7 compatible
Sound (audio device) DirectX-compatible sound card


  1. 1.0 1.1 When running this game without Administrator elevation, activity in %PROGRAMFILES%, %PROGRAMFILES(X86)%, and %WINDIR% might be redirected to %LOCALAPPDATA%\VirtualStore\ (more details).


  1. Sega PC Reloaded - Sonic and Sega Retro Message Board, Page 5 - last accessed on March 27, 2019
  2. Verified by User:AmethystViper on March 27, 2019
  3. Verified by User:AmethystViper on April 6, 2018
  4. Verified by User:AmethystViper on March 27, 2019
  5. Sonic R (Windows)/2004 Release Differences - The Cutting Room Floor - last accessed on March 27, 2019