SA2 PREVIEW: Meet the Characters!

Oh my God! Just when you think Sonic Team can’t do any better, they spill more details on the biggest game of the year – Sonic Adventure 2! Get ready to wipe your chins, people, ‘cos you’re gonna be drooling for a long time!

Sonic Team have dished the dirt on all the characters,  even though they cleverly kept four of them out of our knowledge for quite a while. Yes, you guessed it, there are SIX characters, contrary to popular belief of only Sonic and Knuckles being playable.

The twist in the game is in the Good/Evil concept. Remember the Light/Dark business revealed earlier? There are three characters that are on the ‘Hero’ side, and three on the ‘Dark’ Side. On top of that, if you thought that Sonic Team couldn’t fit anything else on the GD, you’ll be happy to know that SA2 comes with a 2-PLAYER MODE! Yes, the Heroes and Villains will battle it out in unique modes, adding more enjoyment to an already epic game. This is a rundown of all the playable characters, their enemies (each ‘Hero’ has a ‘Dark’ rival out to hinder their progress), their story details, what the 2-Player gameplay consists of and more.

HERO SIDE

Sonic the Hedgehog

As you have guessed, Sonic Adventure 2 features the blue blur front and centre. At the beginning of the game, we see Sonic breaking out of captivity from the clutches of the mysterious ‘GUN’ military. The scene has the pilot of Sonic’s prison plane realising that the hero has taken out all the guards and has escaped. Sonic then appears on the wing of the plane and skyboards down into his first level, City Escape.

His Dark nemesis in the game is a genetic hedgehog being called Shadow, and just like Sonic Adventure before this, the stories and cut scenes for different characters all cross over multiple times, so expect to see Sonic and Shadow duke it out. Sonic faces a boss called Big Foot in his travels, which, funnily enough, is a robot working for ‘GUN’. In the 2-Player Mode, Sonic and Shadow battle it out in a race for the faster and fittest.

Miles ‘Tails’ Prower

Now you know that Tails is a playable character in Sonic Adventure 2! Hooray! As these new screenshots show, in Tails’ stages he is controlling a mech, which I believe is the Tornado 2 from Sonic Adventure! He does love his old plane, does our Tails. His enemy in the game is none other than the big (fat) cheese, Dr. Eggman himself.

As the details were in Japanese I could speculate a guess (hey, I was right with… oh, I won’t spoil it!) that Tails was captured by either Eggman or GUN, and it may be Tails’ job is to escape with the help of his trusty Tornado transformer, mechbot in disguise! ^_^ The 2-Player consists of Tails facing off against Eggman, in an all-out mech war! Ouch, I’ve said too much too soon, haven’t I? -_^

Knuckles the Echidna

As was discovered before, Knuckles is a playable character in Sonic Adventure 2. This time around he has new abilities and he can swim, which most people knew about anyway. His whole story is again based on finding missing pieces of the Master Emerald, but it now seems as if there is a competitor for the shards. A female bat that is allied to the Dark side, Rouge, is also after the Master Emerald, and it is this character who becomes Knuckles’ rival. The 2-Player mode has Knuckles and Rouge racing for the emerald shards.

DARK SIDE

Shadow

Oh yes. Sonic’s biological enemy, Shadow, is now playable on the Dark side. Although not the physically the same, Shadow’s type of levels appear to be the same as Sonic’s – big loops found once before in Speed Highway can be seen in this new batch of screenshots, and it appears that Shadow inherits Sonic’s move set as well, as we see him doing a bit of grinding across a bridge. His boss is also a ‘GUN’ robot, like Sonic. This robot is called Hot Shot, and looks to be a lean mean piece of cheese. As announced before, the two-player is against Shadow and Sonic.

Dr. ‘Eggman’ Robotnik

Hah-hah! WHAT did Dreadknux say, eh? Loyal readers of the Sonic Stadium would have seen before the ‘Dreadknuxster’s First’ theory of Eggman being playable, with the item box in the screenshot and blah blah blah. But now it’s been confirmed that you can play as him! Eggman has to resort to battle tactics in his story, as he is rudely invaded by a wave of ‘GUN’ robots. So, controlling a mech similar to Tails’ convertible Tornado 2, he sets out for revenge. Finally, some ‘rotten egg’ action in a Sonic game. Nice!

Rouge the Bat

Suddenly, from out of the blue, a mystery character appears. Sonic Team are definitely looking for some female diversity here – this feisty female bat is after the shards of the Master Emerald, so she’ll be spending most of her story treading on Knuckles’ toes. The reason for Rouge wanting the shards is anyone’s guess, but this means that there may be more to the plot. Knuckles will certainly have a bit of a cat-fight… er, bat-fight on his hands.

Well, well, well. Sonic Adventure 2 eh? The timeline of events seem spectacular for it. Sonic Team being famously tightlipped about new Sonic Team games, but was the world ready for them to blurt out that they could pull off two Sonic chums facing off, on the same screen, in 30Hz? Was they ready when they said they could pull off a crisp 60Hz in the 1-player adventure? And what about the six characters, the ‘revival’ of Tails (it was rumoured he was not to appear), the appearance of Eggman etc?

Well, I don’t know what the world would have thought, but one thing is for certain. They were surely impressed. Jesus, the world should have been impressed. Sonic Adventure 2 has already landed in Japan, and is arriving on good old USA shores by 22nd June, 8 days before Dreadknux’s birthday and 8 days before the planned re-opening of the ‘Stadium.

Of course, as soon as the European SA2 GD arrives this side of the pacific, I’ll buy it right away, and have a review with you as soon as I have found every last detail. That could take a while, considering everything that has been announced already. Well, just wait for 22nd June you Americans. It WILL be worth it. Believe you me.

To finish off now, for your entertainment, are pictures of the bosses mentioned in Sonic, Tails and Shadows’ adventures:

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Dreadknux

Sexy founder of The Sonic Stadium, and creator and co-organiser of the Summer of Sonic fan convention. By day, I'm a super-fantastic games journalist, el professionale. By night, I'm the mother-loving Sonical Batman. I keep the site ticking, look after the TSS Network, and get all excited about Sonic games so that you can too. May contain nuts.