Some days ago TSS reported on a confirmed Sonic online project, although it was not to be revealed by SEGA or SONICTEAM, but rather a small starting company called Panovation Studios.
A special interview on the SEGA Boards, a complete denial of a project existing by SEGA themselves and masses of rumours fired up by fans turned what was assumed as an “official” title to be slammed as nothing more than vapourware, and even stating that such a project does not exist.
Panovation have personally addressed the issue on their website, and has set the record straight. SEGA does not know about Panovation Studios, but they know about their previous ‘company’, The Blue Hedgehog Network, LLP. ‘TBHN’ was allowed the use of the Sonic license last year, for the purposes of making an interactive ‘official’ website for fans. However, it appears the project was canned and was reborn in ‘Sonic ORPG’ – Panovation’s current venture – of which SEGA know next to nothing about. Hence the company’s denial yesterday. Check out the website to view the statement.
Mark Greig, chairman of Panovation Studios, has talked to TSS personally on the issue as well, commenting directly to the rumours and debunking that has been happening over the last few days.
“What caused all of this hype to happen? Quite honestly there is many factors that played into it and mostly it was caused by a truly devoted fan which will be receiving the choice of either the rarest Chao or Rarest Item in the game on release.”
Speaking about the original interview itself, and why so much was revealed when it was, Greig states that it was a matter of still letting fans know the project existed in the face of an unreleased company website. “(I) thought the people deserved to know since a promise is a promise, and the memo I have received was miss read [sic] and I got in trouble for doing that interview. Regardless it cleared many things up and amazingly got a lot of attention.”
Finally, he was adamant to dispel rumours from fans that the Sonic ORPG was in fact a hoax. “This is not a hoax, or a rumor, or anything that is not real. This is as real as it gets…“. In fact, it was revealed to TSS that a public beta is in the planning stages and could be released sooner than expected.
So there you have it. An ‘official’ Sonic game that SEGA may yet not even know about. It is assumed Panovation will develop this game but use the previous “Blue Hedgehog Network” name to support their legal use of the Sonic license, but however way it happens, Sonic ORPG is happening.
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