Aaron Webber Talks Level Design, Game Mechanics, and More on NeoGaf and Twitter

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Sonic PR man Aaron Webber has taken to NeoGaf and Twitter to answer the burning questions fans have for the upcoming Sonic Boom sequel.

The first thing he’s made sure to address is the game’s quality. “We’re putting a Big effort into improving the game based on feedback from last year!” Big puns aside, Webber has elaborated on what’s been improved.

First of all, the level design has been streamlined. Shattered Crystal’s stages were criticized for being too large and taking too much time, but in Fire and Ice the levels will allow for a faster experience. The collectibles that forces players to replay stages in order to progress have also been repurposed. Now, stages only need to be completed once and collectibles only serve to unlock “neat things” according to Webber.

The titular “fire and ice” powers are toggled on the fly with the shoulder buttons and affect how the player progresses through a level. Webber spoke in-depth about how these powers work on NeoGaf, which I’ve posted below:

Within the levels, you’ll find elemental blocks and interactable components that you can adjust depending on which of the elemental powers you have on. As you can see in the trailer, you can melt ice blocks with fire, or freeze water blocks with ice, etc. It’s all pretty simple early-on, and gets more complex as you progress.

The game’s music is being composed by none other than Richard Jacques, who’s best known within the Sonic community for his work on the Saturn version of Sonic 3D Blast, Sonic R, Sonic & All Stars Racing Transformed, and both of last year’s Sonic Boom games.

Finally, when asked whether or not the game might be ported to the Wii U, Webber said that there are currently no plans to release the game on any other platforms. So if you don’t have a 3DS, I’m afraid you’re out of luck!

Those are all the details Webber has revealed today, but be sure to stay tuned as we continue to bring you all the latest on Sonic Boom: Fire & Ice!

39 Comments

  1. I only own a Wii U! Guess I’ll be missing out on what will no doubt be a real masterpiece! Ok, all jokes aside, I really do hope this game is good. I’m trying to stay optimistic, but it just feels like Sonic fans are getting the short end of the stick lately.

  2. Wow! Well, already, this game is looking to make solid improvements.

    – Not forcing the player to explore, which was the last game’s main problem. Good!
    – Bosses! … Who aren’t just Lyric! And might I say, they look really creative.
    – Multiplayer!
    – Even more abilities, along with Amy!
    – The graphics and environments seem better too!

    If this game is intended as an apology, I gladly accept it so far.

      1. It actually is refreshing to see people willing to give upcoming games a chance before they come out. No matter how this game turns out later, it’s nice to know that there are people out there that are interested and optimistic. :3

    1. You have no idea how glad I am to see someone else be as optimistic as you and myself after yesterdays explosion!

      1. I’m really thankful that I’m not the only one. There has been a good bit of support I have seen, which is a great thing after the complete meltdown I saw with several other fans.

      2. Pretty much this, Kami. I’m finding it hard to be a Sonic fan these days, what with all the negativity left right and center. So it’s nice to see some people having some optimism and giving this a chance.

      3. Amen. Judging by people’s reactions, you’d think Boom Sonic had killed a beloved family member or something. This is seriously nothing to get hyped up over.

  3. Wow, from what I only played of the demo of Shattered Crystal, that was the only issues I had with the game. Maybe this’ll actually turn out for the better.

  4. Richard Jacques also did a lot of the music in Sonic Generations, a lot of people don’t seem to realise. Including the brilliant final boss theme.

    1. I hope it doesn’t suck cause most sonic music is catchy and memorable and something to keep listening to but in boom its not so catchy or memorable. I even hate to say it but sonic 06 has a much more memorable songs even though no one wants to remember the bad things about it.

  5. Wow, I can’t believe people are still falling for this bullshit. I mean, fair play to the guy – he has a thankless job and is doing the best anybody can do in his shoes – but no amount of back-handed PR speak (“As long as your question isn’t “Sega y u do dis”, and I can respond, I’ll do my best to jump in!”) will convince me that this will be any better than the previous games. Shattered Crystal was the worst Sonic game I’ve ever played – and that includes the “usual suspects” – and I still feel that SEGA is making a momumental mistake in making this game, regardless of any alleged “improvements” they boast.

    1. Well, what is he supposed to say? “We know you all hated the last game, which is why we’re just releasing the same game again with no changes! Nya nya!”

      Not exactly good for business, is it?

          1. I’ll believe it when I play it.

            And really, after all the bullshit this pathetic sub-franchise has gone through since it’s release, isn’t pessimism somewhat warranted?

    2. Yeah, I understand how you feel. But hey, nowhere to go but up. I doubt this is going to be good as the other 2D Sonic games, but I’m willing to wait to see how it goes. Even then, though I hope this succeeds, I’m still going to approach with caution any Sonic Boom game until I get further proof.

      1. I’m with you ReggieLan. I am cautiously optimistic. I’m more than aware that nobody is more biased towards a product than the people marketing it. Obviously, they’re not going to out and say “Rise of Lyric is a broken mess and nobody will remember Shattered Crystal in a few years unless we act now!”, because that’s poor advertising. Instead, they’ve played up the improvements on the game. At the same time, there is an effort to improve Shattered Crystal. Haven’t fans asked for years for Sega not to just abandon everything from bad games, but rather look at what the games did right and build off of that?

        Also, despite knowing that PR folks are biased, I’m not going to automatically assume that Woodley and Webber are lying. If I see contradictions, then I will conclude that they are either lying or got bad information about the game. For now, what they’re saying lines up with what we saw in the trailer. Furthermore, although never said directly, they do acknowledge that the previous games were failures. Thus, I don’t have much reason to be anything more than a tad skeptical but mostly optimistic about this.

    3. Hey everyone look its another pissed off sonic fanboy all of this because the first one failed jeez get a life man

  6. Thought Aaron left because he kind of knew how Boom would turn out.. Now he’s back promoting this .. future disaster 🙁

    1. I thought he left because he wanted to pursue things outside of video games. He never said this directly, but I think he came back because he knew Sega needed him right now.

  7. The music in the last two games was so bland and forgettable I still have trouble believing that Jacques himself composed it.

  8. No, no NO, AND NO

    Not again. Uh-uh, not this time Aaron. Nope.

    You’re NOT going to use your fan-favorite personality and friendly disposition to win me over again.

    You’re NOT going to bump into me at NYCC when I visit the Archie booth.

    You’re NOT going to offer me a chance to play the demo of this latest Sonic and give my impressions of it.

    You’re NOT going to impress me with feedback improved gameplay, a thorough understanding of Sonic culture and a fancy soundtrack.

    And you’re definitely NOT going to convince me to buy this game based on these impressions and how great you interact with all of the Sonic fans.

    …..which what I always say every time there’s a new Sonic game that he’s the public relations for and yet I never learn! Somehow, Aaron to magically convince people to buy a Sonic game, no mater how good or bad it is! He does this for Yakuza too! How the hell does he do it!

    WEBBBBEEEERRRRR!!

    1. Maybe that’s why Rise of Lyric and Shattered Crystal sold poorly. No Aaron Webber to promote it!

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