GamesRadar On Needlemouse: Highly Anticipated & Doomed To Fail

GamesRadar On Needlemouse: Highly Anticipated & Doomed To Fail

GamesRadar may be familiar to some Sonic fans thanks to their extremely harsh treatment of SEGA’s mascot. Staunch supporters of older Sonic games writers for the site have documented the hedgehogs fall from grace in graphic detail, labeling his kiss with Elise in Sonic 06 as their reason for taking a swing at Sonic and his friends every chance they get.

Their viewpoint on Sonic isn’t an unusual one in the mainstream gaming press, but while some persecute without remorse, reading thorough the various lists compiled on GamesRadar you can’t help but feel that at least a small part of them yearns for an exceptional Sonic game. Over a year ago now one of their writers stated the only way for SEGA to remedy the problem would be to “Take a cue from Mega Man 9 – make Sonic 4 and bring back Blast Processing.”

Capcom's revival of Mega Man has been so successful it's spawned another retro sequel. It's not a stretch to think SEGA saw this and started work on a classic revival of their own.

Over a year later and GamesRadar aren’t getting exactly what they asked for but it’s close enough and what little we know about Project Needlemouse has them excited,

“So we know it’s 2D. We know it’s HD (which rules out Wii). We know it’s clearly focused on speed and old-school feel based on the sound effects and specific blue-blur animations. By all accounts, this is it folks, the game we’ve been asking for since the late ‘90s. And you know what? We’re ready to bite… almost.”

It’s with that in mind I want to bring your attention to two of their newest lists. The first details their top 100 most anticipated games of 2010. Project Needlemouse sits pretty at number 50.

“The very name sends shivers down our spines. Why? Because Sonic was called Mr Needlemouse internally at Sega before he was called Sonic. This is it – the game where they make Sonic like it’s 1991, only now they’ve got Xbox 360 and PS3 hardware to do it with. Time and time again, our hopes are dashed, but if ever one last fragile hope burned in the void, it’s in the shape of this game. And it has to be perfect. Nothing less will do.”

The well wishing doesn’t last very long. Only a few days later Project Needlemouse appeared on a very different list; Games that are doomed to die in 2010.

“Sonic is historically an automatic seller. After years of slow franchise death, does anyone really give a crap about the little blue bugger anymore? At this point, anyone who does care probably isn’t interested in the Sonic of yesteryear, and anyone who cared about Sonic when he was at the top of the industry has had his passion destroyed by this:

The worst moment in a Sonic game? The worst game in the Sonic series? Many think so.

Claiming Needlemouse is doomed to fail strikes me as being a very premature statement. Firstly there are precious few actual facts to base an opinion on and secondly, dismissing a legion of loyal Sonic fans is a very dangerous thing to do. GamesRadar may end up eating their words with this one. What do you lot think, let me know on the comments!


  1. Hm, I guessing those GamesRadar folks are really quite sad. lol.
    They are just so quick to judge, but I for one cant wait for the game.

    plus, Sonic nextgen wasnt all that bad, really. I quite enjoyed the game and the storyline.

    So, I guess Im saying, Weather Needlemouse is good or bad, its sure to roxors our boxors. xD

  2. As much as I hate Elise and pretty much the entirety of Sonic’s plot in Sonic 06, I just find it stupid that major game journalists seem to use it, along with the other cast members, as the go-to example for the series’ downfall. There are so many worse problems to rant on. Gameplay, level design, etc. But no, they cut straight for the characters and plot. I can understand where one would hate them, but it just seems shallow and dismissive to complain about that before core gameplay elements.

    As for Needlemouse, I understand the skepticism, but for the love of God, can we at least wait until they show us, you know, ANYTHING to start making strong judgments?

  3. Well, Sega has always dose really well with there 2-D games and putting this one on a console makes it even better. in the end i think gamesradar will be having sonic fans banging on there door asking for there apology once they play project needlemouse

  4. “After years of slow franchise death, does anyone really give a crap about the little blue bugger anymore?” umm yeah hi one of the thousands of loyal fans here, how ya doin? XD

  5. Anyone who has played “Sonic Blast” should know that Sonic the Hedgehog (2006) was FAR from the worst the series had to offer. I wouldn’t even rank it as part of the bottom 5.

  6. @ Brianzilla2004

    Actually the title worst Sonic game ever belongs to Sonic Jam for the If you haven’t had the pleasure of playing it, consider your self lucky. That was the main reason I bought the and now regret it every day. I actually had to beg my local game store to take the system and the game back (they would accept as a trade in). Not only were the levels horribly ported, almost unplayable, and who knows how they messed up the physics during the port, but for something that was supposed to collect the best of Sonic 2, S&K, lets just say this game would make you flock to the GBA Sonic 1 remake.

  7. um….
    is it just me or is it that every time a new Sonic game is coming people say, “REMEMBER SONIC’06!!!” and “The Sonic Cycle…”

    I’m tired of people already hating Needlemouse if they know nothing about it…

    another loyal Sonic fan here…and I say…BRING IT ON, SEGA. *shot*

    Besides…I enjoyed Sonic ’06 *shot and eaten*

  8. “After years of slow franchise death, does anyone really give a crap about the little blue bugger anymore?”

    Attendees at Summer Of Sonic, fans on fansites, the rest of us hereX100 says “hi”.

    Because, hey GamesRadar, just because you know little about a game, doesn’t give the right to doom it from the start.

    It’s a strange turn of events that’s happening in the world of Sonic, in the beginning, this is practically what they’ve been… what’s that word? I know it, it’s at the tip of my tounge, oh, yeah, BEGGING TO HAPPEN FOR AGES! And despite numerous of success with the 2D handhelds and seeing this… it really defies all belief, I don’t know how I put up with it, it’s simply… staggering…

    I know alot of people didn’t like 06, but can’t you try making an example a bit more recent, I mean what the hell does that kiss have to do with the quality of the DAMN FRANCHISE, we just got word that Sonic’s going to be only playable character, what’s the point of pulling this shit on us?

  9. I’m one of the many loyal sonic fans out there. Does anyone really care what these idiots at gamesradar have to say anymore. One minute they want an old school sonic game the next minute they don’t. Project needlemouse is going to be awesome.

  10. Yes, unfortunately a great many review sites have lost the ability to judge things – Sonic or no – on individual merits.

  11. Well, GamesRadar aren’t the first ones to take a swing at our most fav’ed hero. It seems nearly every reviewer on the net has given their thoughts on what is and should be a Sonic game. Its not uncommon to express your opinion whether you like the game or not, but to repeatedly bash Sonic on every game thats released and bring up the same argument:
    “It should be 2D!”, “Where’s the speed?”, “Bring back SatAM!”, “Sonic should never kiss a human!”

    It’s tired, redundant and quite frankly; it makes my ears bleed! What ever happen to just enjoying the damn games and realising yourself whether it a good game or not? Sega are trying to redeem themselves since the release of Sonic Unleashed and more recently Bayonetta. It’s not the time yet to say Project Needlemouse is going to fail, they didn’t do that to other games before their release.
    All I can say is ‘wait and see’. I, myself, can’t wait for its release, as I do with any new Sonic game whether it 2D or not.

  12. I really didn’t think Sonic 06 was the worst Sonic game ever. I still play it. Yeah it’s glitchy and lags but for me, it’s fun, and I liked seeing Sonic being presented so realistically. Now all they need to do is present Sonic realistically in his own world, rather than in bloody Venice.

    And yeah GamesRader are clearly beyond logic.

  13. Hey, name’s Lobo. Big fan. Really hoping for Needlemouse to shine. SEGA can’t POSSIBLY eff this up…can they?!?! And after all the things I’ve heard about ’06, I’m sad to say that I refuse to play it…

  14. Not much doubt left to be seen here that GamesRadar does not hire people who give a damn about either what they write or keeping their own stories straight, though this begs the question of why an article bringing more attention to their stupidity is really necessary. But I suppose they’re a decent pincushion for pointing out crap journalism at work, so pay attention now, because it’s not merely about the criticism:

    a) The first quote contains someone rambling on about “clues” from a teaser trailer that is now known to be based entirely on the imaginations of the teaser creators, so that better have been written before this came to light

    b) The person in quote #2 is so frothing at the mouth with his own fanboy excitement that he **completely makes up a fact about the game** (in lieu of actual information that hasn’t remotely become clear yet) and keeps on raving anyway as though everybody knew it were the god’s honest. This nicely illustrates people letting their most ridiculous expectations run wild and letting hype spin way the hell out of control.

    BTW, for what it’s worth, the teaser’s title logo is very likely lifted straight off the Sonic 1 title screen since Integrated Alchemy were given no game assets to work with whatsoever – i’m inclined to believe that some of these very high hopers (or shall we say “high rollers”) will have a heart attack if the player character is not revealed to be 90’s Mega Drive Sonic!

    c) “And it has to be perfect. Nothing less will do.” As if this were any less pompous than “doomed to die”. So if the fella’s not positively creaming his pants within (x) amount of time of pressing start, he’s gonna…what? Type something else mean and arrogant? My, such pent up rage at this outfit!

    d) But for good measure: Yeah sure, your passion is so utterly destroyed, that’s why this is the 500th reminder of why… over 3 years after the fact and going… whatever…

    While i’m taking the opportunity, “It’s not a stretch to think SEGA saw this and started work on a classic revival of their own.” NO. REALLY? Bet you also think “they” (always that magnanimous “them”…) didn’t have Sonic Shuffle use cel-shaded character models because it wasn’t trendy then.

  15. It seems all game reviewers are haters now a days. So Sonic ’06 was pretty sub par…big deal, that game was over 3 years ago; just because you don’t like one game, doesn’t mean you should judge the future of an entire franchise by just that. Some people learn from their mistakes eventually. That’s like saying all the Spider-man related media that comes out after ‘Spider-Man 3’ is terrible just because the film ‘Spider-man 3’ sucked.

  16. @Niko-Plus: Do what any Wii owner would do if Needlemouse was shunning the Wii:
    -A. Buy up Sonic Mega Collection. It’s remotely the closest thing to Needlemouse, sans HD graphics.
    -B. Emulate.
    -C. Buy an Xbox 360 or a PS3.
    -D. Come up with the world’s first Xbox 360/PS3 emulator.
    -E. Do none of the above.

  17. Gah, curse these comments lacking the editing feature!

    @Niko: Oh, and there’s always the VC.

  18. For some reason, GR has been restricting mentioning Wii in their PN articles because of the HD announcement. Being a Wii only owner, I know how upset others like me are going to be if it doesn’t come out on the Wii. And correct me if I’m wrong, but aren’t some of the articles written by a different person/ some of the staff contribute to a big article?

  19. I hope GamesRadar ends up eating their words.
    SEGA won’t fail at this game. It may not be as good as we’re all hoping, but just the fact it’s 2D and it’s some species of New Super Mario Bros is a really cool thing. The badniks are returning and all. There probably won’t be any voice acting. And I’ve been wishing for SEGA to dare and do something like this since I knew about Super Paper Mario. Now, will Sonic’s look resemble his from the old days. I’d like so.
    There could also be 2D animated cutscenes or ones like in Sonic 3 and Sonic 3 & Knuckles, right within the levels.

  20. well according to them i do not exist.
    They say there are no sonic fans of the mordern games who care about the classics…. well I do. Is my entire life a lie?!

  21. Blah blah doomcrying blah blah.

    To say this game has to be simply “perfect” is a great way to set your hopes up too high. Right alongside the kids and teens who’re all like “OMIGOD THIS’LL BE SO FREAKING AWESOME!”

    Can this just be a game I can play? Perhaps even enjoy? I really hope I can do that.

  22. Let us not forget that there are different staff members at gamesradar, some of wich, tend tend to be more opinionated than others. If you look at other sites such as gamespot, screwattack, etc., you’re bound to find critics who-despite having a strong loath towards alot of recent sonic games- still know that he still has the POTENTIAL to have a good game, and they get just as exited as we are(if not more).

  23. Does anyone actually take Games Radar seriously? Anyone at all?

    I doubt this game will magically fix the series, but at least it’s aiming to please those of us who prefer the pre-SA games. I hardly think it’ll beat the Megadrive games, but then I don’t expect it to. I expect it to be good in its own right.

  24. You hate Sonic now? Fine, no one’s stopping you. You don’t believe in the games anymore? K. But for the love of God could you just stop acting like you are the poster child of all Sonic fans today?! Kthxbai.

  25. It’s just stupid to say stuff like this before you haven’t tried teh game and absolutely not before you haven’t even seen a screenshot! Well, I do as I always do! Say what I think about the new Sonic game, but I’m not going to say it’s going to be bad.

  26. Wow, I’m not suprised to see another game review company jump on the Sonic hating bandwagon along with the likes of IGNorant.
    For shit sake, get over 06. I actually enjoyed that game, even though it is flawed,it was still alright to play. They seem to forget that it was NOT Sonic Teams fault. It was Sony’s and XBox’s.

    Why are they trying to form an opinion of something they have minute detail on? It just plain shows how close-minded they are. I’m wondering if when it is released and it turns out to be an awesome game, it will still be shunned by those Nintendo-praising reviewers.

  27. I don’t get why people bash the whole damn Sonic series ’cause of Sonic ’06.
    That’s pretty much saying that the Killzone series sucks because of Killzone 1. (I know Killzone 2 was met with great reviews, just trying to project and analogy here.)

    Other things I’m wondering:

    Why is Needlemouse doomed to fail when SEGA’s released little about it?
    Why does it have to be “perfect?” Hell, I’ll settle for a 7/10.

    And another thing, in comment 3, why is he even saying stuff like that? I’ve played and like Unleashed, Secret Rings, and even Sonic Heroes, but I still have Sonic 3&K for my PC. God, this whole Sonic-Hating-Bull is pissing me off.

    *sits on bed angrily and waits for more P:N info*

  28. They can’t doom Needlemouse just because Sonic06 got a bad review. I’ve only watched videos of it and it looks great.

  29. I think it’s flat out weird to doom “Project Needle mouse” anyway, when we’ve seen 0 gameplay footage of it. Only a “Teaser” trailer and concept art.

  30. You’ve gotta love the lesson this teaches us: “Hey guys! If you’ve done something good, never try to do anything different! Remember, if it’s not an exact replica of your glory days, it’s bad and you should be killed, because new things are always terrible no matter what!”

    You know, that’s not a lesson you’ll ever teach your kids.

  31. But here’s the thing: new things are terrible if they’re terrible, which a great many, but not all, of the new things introduced into the Sonic series of late *are*.

    Just because something is new doesn’t make it terrible, you’re right. But just because something is new doesn’t make it not terrible.

  32. @Matt: Yeah… But apparently still, the only way to make Sonic respectable is to just remake Sonic One on a Next-Gen console. Even if there are new ideas that work perfectly fine or ideas introduced previously that just weren’t implemented correctly but had all the potential to be made brilliant if they were just messed around with a little, people HAVE to toss them out to make Sonic like the ‘Glory Days’ again. 😐 At the end of the day, it just seems kind of twisted.

  33. I don’t care how the game plays, I’m in it for the music! I just hope the new composer doesn’t screw things up….

  34. Yeah, the people at Gamesradar engage in ‘journalism’ of a very specific sort – let’s say shocking and disparaging things about games to get people’s attention and possibly a cheap laugh. It’s in vogue to bash Sonic, and they’re just on the bandwagon.

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