SEGA AGES developer M2 has expressed a desire to include originally-cut features in its upcoming re-release of Sonic the Hedgehog 2 on Nintendo Switch.
During a lengthy interview with Japanese website Game Watch (translated and interpreted by DualShockers), M2 CEO Naoki Horii discussed Sonic 2, which was originally released on Sega Mega Drive in 1992 and announced as a SEGA AGES title around Tokyo Game Show 2018.
Relating to Sonic series programmer (and Sonic Team studio head until 2006) Yuji Naka, Horii mentioned that throughout the years, Naka had contributed heavily to SEGA’s general hardware and software development, owing to his desire to constantly push the boundaries of what was possible. This was evident in the Master System game Phantasy Star, a game he programmed and is the latest in the SEGA AGES lineup. But it was also true of Sonic 2, with reportedly a lot of planned content (such as Hidden Palace Zone and Genocide City Zone) on the cutting room floor.
Horii jokes that, due to Naka’s advanced programming work on each of his titles (and perhaps alluding to the fact that he was something of a perfectionist developer), M2 will “probably have the hardest time” remastering titles that the former Sonic Team head worked on. “Speaking of that, [Horii] teases that [M2] might include in Sonic 2 for [Nintendo] Switch things that Yuji Naka wanted to do in the original game, but couldn’t because of the Megadrive’s limitations,” reads the DualShockers report.
If they manage to pull it off – hopefully with some direct input from Naka-san himself? – it would make for a super-interesting re-release indeed. Wood Zone, maybe? Would Christian Whitehead’s Hidden Palace Zone make the cut, or would a brand new interpretation of the hidden stage be created? It’s a lot to think about!
While we’re here, following on from our previous report that M2 was close to bringing Dreamcast games to Nintendo Switch… this same interview confirms that games originally released for SEGA’s last home console will ‘definitely’ be released as part of the SEGA AGES series. “There’s a particular [Dreamcast] game that [Horii, Sega producer Kagasei Shimomura and director Rieko Kodama], especially Shimomura-san, love and want to replay, so they’re currently working it too. The game is a secret for now though.”
Sonic Shuffle, here we come!