Sonic the Hedgehog has seen his fair share of spinoff titles and cameo appearance in later years. While many would believe that these started in 2000, it actually started in 1993 with Sonic Spinball in 1993. However, it seems that there were other plans very shortly after the launch of the original Sonic the Hedgehog.
In 1991, there was an educational game in development for the Sega Master System called Sonic’s Edusoft. This was being developed by Tiertex and would have been published by U.S. Gold, whom were both based out of England where the Master System had an overwhelming majority share of the console video game market.
This game was unknown for several years until one day an anonymous person made a Wikipedia page about the game with information regarding the license. It was later discovered that the person who created the Wikipedia page was a former programmer of the game and would later provide information on the SMSPower forums.
So when did development start? Well it seems that development started in 1991 shortly after the release of Sonic the Hedgehog and is believed to be the first Sonic game to not be developed by the Sonic Team, but that has never been confirmed. The game did get tested out by some students in a undisclosed primary school in the U.K. as the target market for the game was children around the age of Kindergarten.
The game was ultimately cancelled by Sega themselves as the studio never asked for permission to use Sonic in the game. This resulted in the game never being published. This doesn’t mean that it can’t be played as a prototype leaked online in April 2008 and is downloadable here.