The Google Play Store posted a very confusing Sonic the Hedgehog tribute

Google Play Store on OnePlus 9
(Image credit: Chris Wedel/Android Central)

What you need to know

  • In what was supposed to be a fun look back at an iconic video came character, the official Google Play Store account revealed it doesn't know anything about Sonic the Hedgehog on X (formerly Twitter).
  • Every single post in the X thread was hit with a Community Note pointing out the glaring and obvious inaccuracies. 
  • By the end, we heard from Sonic himself, who joined in with X users poking fun at the original Google Play Store thread.

The official Google Play Store account on X (formerly Twitter) frequently highlights video games, characters, and pop-culture moments on its page. But something that was supposed to be a fun look back at one of the most iconic video game characters ever ended up backfiring for the Play Store's social team. In a thread about the history of Sonic the Hedgehog, the Google Play Store account got everything wrong, and we literally mean everything.

The original premise was this: "Sonic, but as you scroll he gets older and older." Seems simple, right? All you had to do was find images of Sonic throughout history and list them in chronological order. For the Play Store, it was anything but.

Things started off on the wrong foot when the Play Store tried to show an image of Sonic from 1991, but there was just one problem. Tails was in the corner of the image, and Tails wasn't introduced as a character until the following year. The Play Store actually showed a 2013 version of the original game, which was referred to as "8-bit glory." In fact, the original Sega Genesis version of Sonic from 1991 was a 16-bit game.

Think the errors stopped there? Think again. When trying to find a picture of 1993's Sonic, the Play Store shared one from 2014 instead. It's pretty obvious to anyone, even those without a knack for Sonic, that the Sonic design in this post was not from 1993. 

Instead of showing the 1996 Sonic, the Play Store posted a 2013 iteration. In place of a 2003 version of Sonic, we got a 2005 version. When trying to show the 2006 character, a post shared 2017 Sonic. And in a truly-remarkable error, the Play Store ended up correctly showing the original 1991 game — but called it a "2018 Sonic" that "weirdly looked like 90's Sonic." 

Originally, we thought the Play Store finally got one right when it shared a screengrab from the Sonic the Hedgehog movie, claiming it was an example of "2020 Sonic." But as it turns out, this frame comes from the second Sonic film, which was released in 2022. Wrong again.

Of course, Community Notes had a field day with all these mistakes, covering the entire thread with corrections. By the end, the official Sonic the Hedgehog himself chimed in:

Brady Snyder

Brady is a tech journalist covering news at Android Central. He has spent the last two years reporting and commenting on all things related to consumer technology for various publications. Brady graduated from St. John's University in 2023 with a bachelor's degree in journalism. When he isn't experimenting with the latest tech, you can find Brady running or watching sports.

  • Shadnic
    I .... genuinely think Google may have an AI running this account based on the types of errors made here. It truly feels like just raw data misinterpreted without any human processing what-so-ever. Also all the people replying to it are just getting generic bot-responses from the same account.