|Sonic the Hedgehog Modern Pins & Keychains of the USA 7|
|This page of USA Sonic Pins & Keychains will have only modern items. For actual classic items, see Pins/Keychains pages 1 and 2. Because they're not that big, some of the older ones may be harder to find. There was a dry spell for pins and keychains in the early 2000s, then again during the Boom-ban. Some of these keychains may be available in the Sonic Gear Store.|
|Sonic Gear Main Merchandise Page * Sonic Pins & Keychains 1 * Sonic Pins Keychains 2 * Sonic Pins Keychains 3 *
Sonic Pins Keychains 4 * Sonic Pins Keychains 5 * Sonic Pins Keychains 6 * Sonic Pins Keychains 8 *
|Now here's a stylish set of pins from Zen Monkey! These are called the "Sonic Golden Pins", but really they should be called the Emerald Shape Pins or something because the emerald shape seems to be the real theme here.|
|(As pin metal when it's plain is either always goldtone or silvertone--"Chaos Emerald" is more distinctive for a descriptive, in this case). But, whatever they're called, they're a fun idea. Each has a modern character art with a cool glitter enamel background. Sonic on dark blue, Tails on yellow, Knuckles on green, Shadow on light blue (for some reason), Amy on Purple and Eggman on sort of reddish orange. The glitter colors are fairly appropriate, like Amy looks fine on purple instead of pink. The art they've chosen is fun as well, notice how it was all picked so that part of the character looks like it is popping up off of the pin. The poses are some of the less-freqent oes too which is also nice. These are sold seperately and EACH pin is 10 dollars. (So, they're probably not tiny--which is fine) These ARE on Amazon, but because it's Zen Monkey they should be sold elsewhere too. Very stylish, well thought out, and quality looking, an A+ set.|
|Here's the last pin to the set, to total 7 emerald shape pins with characters, for the 7 Chaos Emeralds....sorta. (They didn't use all emerald colors for the glitter) The chao for whatever reason, the photo for it appeared after the other 6 characters. It is a neutral chao, shown in a cheering pose. The background for that emerald is quite a bright blue. (It IS 'chao blue' so that's a nice choice) The set is nice, with all 7 pins present.
You CAN get these pins as a set in 2021, at Zenmonkeystudios.com for about 55 dollars
|Here are 2 classic style pins from Zen Monkey for 2021. There's getting ready to run Sonic and neoclassic fists-together Knuckles. These pins may be slightly larger than normal size, but still within the standard for metal and hard enamel pins. They use silvertone metal for the line art borders. Both are quite good looking, with every small detail exactly in place, just like the art. Each pin should be 9.99 if you can find it, and while they last, can be gotten at Zenmonkeystudios.com|
|In spring 2021, Zen Monkey Studios releases a limited edition pin.
This is called the Modern Sonic Emblem Pin. It is limited to 150 of it only, and it is numbered on the back. It's fairly large, at 1.5 inches in diameter for the circle. The background texture is 'sandblasted' metal so it is sort of rough and holds the dark patina. This helps make the Sonic art look 3d/popping up off the pin, which is a neat effect.
The looking back/jump pose is a good choice here, it's nice and active, but does not become confusing or jumbled on the monotone metal of the pin. This is 16 dollars, and only sold at their website until it runs out. Which means it will likely be an uncommon pin in the future.
|A Blast from the Past?
Well...with Great Eastern activating Sonic stuff again...it seems to be. This is not a duplicate entry, it's actually a key chain re-release. The actual item, a flat rubber/layered thumbs-up modern Sonic in a circle seems unchanged. The original was probably out at or before the time of Sonic X, to give you an idea of how old it was. The back-card is probably the same too, with the modern cast in front of some rays/the logo.
It's an ok design, but it does leave the 'shine dot' off of the eye which makes it look a little odd/'off'. It has the usual key ring and claw clip. The package back is updated for 2021 though, so you can tell it's not just an old product. The MSRP seems to be 7.99. This was found at Books a Million. Photo by Taaron
|In 2022, a new company steps onto the scene and it's the "Pin Kings"! (Which, of course, is a joke off of 'king-pins'...naturally) And, right away, they start living up to the name by producing quality enamel and metal Sonic pins at all-right prices.
Here are 4 from their first selection. They start here with the anniversary for both Sonic (30th) and Sega (60th) Each set of 2 is carded with nice card art that's embellished with foil accents.
|The Sonic 30th pins have the usual silouette running Sonic where the "0" from the 30 is the feet/red shoes/spin and it has Anniversary written at the bottom. The second is modern Sonic in full color jumping over the 30th Logo with a yellow moon shape and some stars/invincibility stars in the background. Notice how this one is based exactly upon the CG art featured in the corner of the card.
The 60th Sega pins are silver/steel color with only dark blue enamel for the details. One is mostly square with diecut edges around the font for "Go Sega 60th Anniversary", the second has a Sonic face (modern) at the top, and Go Sega at the bottom, so it is more of a tall rectangle. *With how this font is set up it is impossible to tell if it is a G or a 6*
|After their Anniversary pins above, Pin Kings continues with these somewhat trapezoid shaped classic style character/name pins. There are 2 pin cards, one with nose-touch Sonic & arms-cross Eggman, and another card with fists-together Knuckles and waving hi Tails. Each one has the character's name at the top or bottom, and a different fun background. Sonic has spirals, Eggman is on white/black stars, Knuckles has screentone dots & Tails has blue/silver stars. The art is well chosen and all neoclassic.|
|Notice how the design choices have parts of the characters that stick off the edge of the pin like a die-cut, and parts that are 'within' the borders of the pin. This makes them have the design-feel of a comic book panel, and it adds fun and interest. With quality metal, good art, and nice design, this is a good set of pins to get in 2022 for the pin collector.|
|Pin Kings continues to be 'on a roll' with Sonic, as they add 2 basically round pins, each with a different slogan. As before, these are carded and classic style metal/enamel pins.
The first pin has Sonic & Tails standing in a ring of stars with some regular rings scattered around. The slogan here is "Let's Roll!" The other pin has neoclassic art for jumping side Sonic and fist down Knuckles. The background here is cracked/gray, and the border is a red circle. There are a few rings and the slogan is "Sonic Speed". These pins also use a bit of 'over the edge' detail for some of the letters, and the first/shoe of the characters. This adds interest to the pin edges.
|Pins specifically for Halloween?
Pin Kings says 'yes' and creates this pair of all green and black metal and enamel pins. These use the uncommon art (Sega Channel, most likely) with the characters in costumes. Sonic is dressed (sort of, it's just a cape) as a vampire with a big cape. He's shown hopping out of a coffin. The cape has "Scary" and the coffin has "Fast" to make up the slogan. The Tails pin is just him, but he is dressed as a "mad scientist" with goofy goggles and tools. The font is (as expected) that 'spooky drip' font often found around the holiday.
This is a bit of an odd choice because Halloween is not particularly associated with pins? However, pin-collectors will make the decision.
|Cute pins for seasonal sparkle and fun!
These pins are actually pretty adorable. They use glitter for the snow shapes of the snow-angels that Sonic & Tails are doing / also the background for the pin itself. These use all new art for them, with each one in a puffy coat and scarf. This is a cute winter activitiy/art for classic style Sonic and Tails.
The art is also really good, notice the perspective on the shoes, the detail for the coats and the fun expressions despite being at an uncommon angle to be 'drawn from'.
Out of the Pin Kings pins so far, this is their most unique pair.
|This is called the 3 Chao Characters Keychain.
However...only 1 of them is a character. (That being Omochao) The other 2 are just a generic neutral chao and a generic dark chao. None the less, it's still an all right metal and enamel keychain, a sturdy item for chao lovers. The addition of Omochao is nice because it looks different, and is rarely on merch. (The fans 'hate' him and 'throw' him in the games because the meme is that 'his tips are annoying'--so it became a little self-referential)
This is a SegaShop item in 2022, and should be about 13 dollars. (A tad steep for a keychain, but it is all metal and enamel, and seems to be fairly large)
|The Sega Shop Online added 'monthly pins'. They release 1 new character pin each month, but you have to keep going back to the store to order it--and that's before the pin sells out. The pins of the month seem to be a popular thing, but of course, the more popular characters|
|sell out first/quickly so you have to keep an eye on the shop page. With this, you can see July Charmy, August Cream with Cheese, September Rouge and June Big the Cat. The pins are slightly textured, but it's unknown what they're made of. (Probably not rubber or enamel) You can write in for credit if you know.|
|After the first (presumably) success of the first line of JUST-Toys Backpack Hanger keychain figures, they release a 2nd set, but this time only with 6 characters.
This line is modern rather than classic, and the hang toppers are a teardrop shape with a few spikes along it. The figures are nicely detailed, and the poses they have chosen are uncommon, which is a nice touch. (Ignore duplicate images here, the factory photo duplicates Sonic & Tails) You can get hand up Amy, jumping fist Knuckles, finger waving Shadow,
|pointing away Sonic, leaping Tails and hovering Metal Sonic.
What's NOT great about these are that they are blind bagged AND expensive. They're about 8 dollars a bag which makes it very costly/annoying to try and get all 6. It's better than their 11 or 12 or whatever the first line had (Seen on Sonic Pins Keychains Page 5 here) but it is still frusterating. At least make an option to "Buy 6 be guarenteed to get 1 of each".
|And here, at the end of 2022 is a look at every "pin of the month" released at the Sega Shop online for that year. Super Sonic was the final pin, and he appeared in December. It's a fitting selection of most main line characters to start off their pin series right.|
|The pins all use a stock art, but they did choose some less-common ones to keep the pins looking fresh. The odd ones out would be Big and Charmy (as Espio is more popular than Charmy and Blaze is more popular than Big) Hopefully 2023 will bring more characters to the line up. Pins seem to release on the last week of each month.|
|Here is a closer look at the Super Sonic pin. There's not a lot of official stock art of him, so the floating/aggrivated pose is used.|