IGN Frontiers Footage Shows Old Moves in a New Context

This morning, IGN premiered their new Sonic Frontiers footage, noting that the month will see further updates, but for now, we’ve got 6 minutes of edited gameplay footage:

The video shows off Sonic running through the rocky grasslands area we’ve seen, but there’s much more interaction with the environment. In fact, unlike yesterday’s 30 second clip, this one has no combat whatsoever, just world traversal.

Sonic doesn’t have many new moves, but the one that is shown off is the ability to draw circles by running, causing an updraft. Meanwhile, Sonic maintains his standard 3D moveset of running, boosting, grinding, air dashing, air dropping, sidestepping, and wall running for good measure. While Sonic seems to only be able to run (and climb, apparently) on vertical surfaces with a specific glowing texture, he can take rock slopes and ridges with ease by maintaining speed.

If you were worried (as I was) that moving to an open world might mean less actual level design, the video is full of small instances of speed and platforming challenges, be it scaling a tall tower dotted with springs and homing points, or just finding paths made of boost rings and grind rails. There’s even a few simple puzzles thrown into the mix.

Rest assured, we’ll be picking this apart over the next few days, but for now, go enjoy some tranquil vistas at intense speed.

Published by

GX

A podcaster since 2008, GX originally founded The Spindash podcast, until joining Sonic Stadium's monthly Sonic Talk. He currently co-hosts the show and runs weekly streams on Stadium's Twitch channel at https://www.twitch.tv/sonicstadium

16 Comments

  1. This looks good and all but while I get that Sega and ST wants to show off the “openess” of the open-world here right now, tbh this is one of the issues I have with most open-worlds in general, near emptiness of “life” besides the player character.

    Also, am I the only one who thinks they should have used some other kind of music? Not saying the actual music here is bad, I like it but I would have prefered something that actually makes you feel like that this is a Sonic game.

    1. Maybe that will be part of the plot. Sonic is sent to a post-apocalyptic world ala Kirby and the Forgotten Land where nature is reclaiming everything and everyone is dead. Perhaps the goal will be to figure what happened to the world’s people

  2. Visually it looks amazing, movement wise it looks amazing, however gameplay wise is a different story. Sonic feels too slow and it seems like whoever was playing had to boost multiple times to keep up speed. At the same time, they should’ve shown off the combat first because that’s what mainly differentiates this game from others. I’m excited for future updates throughout the month but I don’t know I wish they would’ve just dropped a trailer or something.

  3. I’m liking some of what I see, but there is an extremely worrying amount of jank in this preview. The first jump doesn’t even work without some glitchiness. Here’s hoping it gets some major polish.

    1. If you notice, the music has actually been added on in post.
      I’m sure that song will still be in the game in this area, but there could be more to it. Usually, these open world games make use of some form of dynamic music, or seemless transitions to other tracks… Well, but maybe I’m expecting too much of a Sonic game, haha.

  4. Very mixed here. Visuals are great but I want to see more biomes. The amount of pop in and frame rate dips were concerning. I think I’ll have fun with this game but those puzzles look so basic and aren’t designed to use Sonic’s speed. Game would probably look more fun if instead of boost, it was momentum based. Something like Adventure or Speed Simulator. I wonder how much variety in combat there will be. I’m not sure what to think here.

  5. Who chose this footage? Like a major element of your game is the combat, and you don’t show it. A major element of your game are these unleashed-esque cyberspace levels, and you don’t show it. A major element of your game is the minimalist story with a focus on the new female character, and you don’t show it. Of course people are saying it looks like a tech demo, all you did was traverse the environment. I hope Sonic gets more movement abilities and they just dont want to spoil us on late game, but this was poor footage choice.

    1. IGN will be showing off Sonic Frontiers all month long. The gameplay here was specifically showing off the world, traversal, and some puzzles. On Friday we’re getting showcase of combat, and interviews have been confirmed to be coming soon. If you were to ask me I’d say a story/character trailer & a cyberspace gameplay will probably be around the end of June.

  6. Honestly, after Sonic Froniter, I’d like to see Sonic in a different gaming spin-off. Examples include

    A Metroidvania(Focused on Amy Rose)
    A Musou game similar to Hyrule Warriors(Along with other Warriors games)
    A LEGO video game(After LEGO Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga, I welcome new era LEGO Games, and the entire Sonic Legacy would be perfect)

    1. Two quick things:
      1. Warner no longer has the LEGO license. Skywalker Saga was the last TT LEGO game unless business agreements change.
      2. I would love the hell out of a Sonic Musou. It would be the most beautifully dumb project and I support this idea wholeheartedly.

      1. 1. Who even has the rights to LEGO (that can be negotiated with)? Because I want to play Sonic’s LEGO Dimensions campaign without buying the entire device needed to play the game and reach that point.
        2. I in good faith cannot support “dumb” projects. I focus more on unironically thought-out passion projects.

        1. I might be mistaken, WB no longer has exclusivity on the brand. That said, fairly recently 2K is apparently publishing several LEGO sports games, including one from Sumo Digital.
          Also, I can comfortably say, the Musou series has an incredible amount of thought-out passion for the most dumbass anime nonsense out there. They do good work.

  7. There’s something really amusing of seeing lots of random ass grind rails and platforms floating far above half-empty open-world island.

  8. I’m finding this gameplay very underwhelming. It doesn’t feel very Sonic-like at all, and the pacing seems really awkward. Sega is clearly trying to make “Breath of the Wild, but Sonic” here, but this gameplay video looks like the type of thing that I would expect to see from a 3D tech demo at Sage instead of a AAA Sonic game. If Sega wanted to do something open-world like this, they should have made a new IP or pitched it as a spinoff because right now I’m experiencing flashbacks of the same jarring “wait, this doesn’t feel like Sonic” feeling that I experienced when I watched the first Sonic ’06 demo footage.

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