Google accused of using AI for embarrassing Sonic history lesson

Google accused of using AI for embarrassing Sonic history lesson
Images via Google | Sonic Team

Written by 

Tom Chapman


29th Apr 2024 09:50

When it comes to gaming icons, who do you tend to think of? Mario, Lara Croft, Master Chief? Each gaming giant has its own mascot, whether official or not, and when it comes to SEGA, Sonic reigns supreme. The Blue Blur has been a staple of the scene since 1990, but it seems not everyone knows that. 

First appearing as a cameo in 1990's Rad Mobile, Sonic is best known for his standalone Sonic the Hedgehog in 1991. After we first stepped into the Green Hill Zone, there was no stopping the series from spawning sequels, Olympic Games crossovers, and live-action movies. If only Google knew any of this.

Google Play accused of using AI for Sonic history lesson

In terms of search engines, Google is the go-to for many, serving as a fountain of knowledge for anything we might need to know. However, when Google Play recently tried to honour the past 34 years of Sonic's history, it got things disastrously wrong.

The official Google Play X/Twitter was supposed to give us a slice of Sonic's history in a thread that was supposed to show him getting older as we scroll. We assume it was meant to chart Sonic from his original appearance through to his most recent release in 2022's Sonic Frontiers, but soon, it became a bloodbath.

For a start, the first post misses his Rad Mobile origin and jumps to his 1991 standalone. Well, it should do. instead, it used a screenshot from a later port of the game that features Tails. The Community Notes are hard at work, with the next post supposedly using a shot from 1993 but actually featuring 2014's Sonic Boom.

His 2003 years miss giants like Sonic Heroes, 2018 is confused for 1991, and 2020's Sonic movie gets confused with its 2022 sequel. Aside from the hundreds of replies about the Google Play app not working, others have assumed AI of writing the thread. We're not sure what's going on, but Sonic himself isn't happy.

Even Sonic himself hates Google's strange gaming history tweets

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The embarrassing thread even caught Sonic's attention. The official Sonic account simply writes, "What are you doing?" Replying to Sonic, someone said, "Please pull a Superman and run around the earth to reverse time and figure out a way to remove Google's existence."

Someone else wrote, "You know your thread is trash when your subject steps in," and a third said, "Get ‘em Sonic!" Whether this is embarrassing for whoever is running the Google Play account or proves that AI isn't quite the future you think it is, Google is left looking more than a little red-faced right now.

Tom Chapman
About the author
Tom Chapman
Tom is Trending News Editor at GGRecon, with an NCTJ qualification in Broadcast Journalism and over seven years of experience writing about film, gaming, and television. With bylines at IGN, Digital Spy, Den of Geek, and more, Tom’s love of horror means he's well-versed in all things Resident Evil, with aspirations to be the next Chris Redfield.
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