See Sonic Racing and Chu Chu Rocket! Universe in Action Here!

So, with Apple Arcade launching today, we’re finally getting our first in-depth looks at both Sonic Racing and Chu Chu Rocket! Universe. With no official footage being released, we decided to record our own footage of these games.

It should be noted that both of these games are being recorded off of an iPhone 7, which could only achieve medium graphical quality for either game. This footage is not representative of how the games will look on more advanced hardware.

For Sonic Racing, I recorded the tutorial and a few races in the default vertical orientation, before later recording some footage horizontally. Check them out below:

I actually found it more difficult to play this game with the landscape orientation. Here’s hoping the Apple TV version has controller support:

For Chu Chu Rocket! Universe, I recorded the opening minutes of the game, including some bits of story mode, then recorded another puzzle separately to show off how arrows are selected (and because it was the first puzzle I had some trouble with).

You’ll find those recordings below:

Be sure to stick around for more news on these and other games!

Sonic Racing & Chu Chu Rocket! Universe Launch Today as Part of Apple Arcade (UPDATED)

Two Sonic Team franchises have launched new entries today as part of Apple Arcade’s launch line-up. Sonic Racing brings a version of Sumo Digital’s Team Sonic Racing to Apple’s platforms, letting players race as a variety of Sonic characters in a team-based racer. Chu Chu Rocket! Universe brings back the classic puzzle action of the Dreamcast original, where the player has to direct mice through a course to their rocket ship, without letting the cats eat them. Both games were made by SEGA HARDlight, the same developers behind the Sonic Dash games.

Apple Arcade is a subscription-based game service for Apple platforms, including iPhone, iPad, Apple TV and Macintosh. For $5 a month, you gain access to every game on the service, without needing to deal with ads, in-app purchases, or other kinds of micro transactions. Every game on the service is exclusive to it, so it’s unlikely these games will be appearing on other platforms (or at least mobile platforms) any time soon.

If you want to try the games now, you can take advantage of a 30-day free trial after downloading iOS 13 for iPhone. Unfortunately, only iPhone users can currently access Apple Arcade, as the updates for Apple’s other platforms are arriving until September 30.

UPDATE: We have been able to confirm that both games boast controller support, including support for PS4 and Xbox One controllers. To sync a PS4 controller, hold the share and home buttons to put it into pairing mode. For Xbox One, hold the sync button. Afterwards, each controller can be linked to your iPhone from the phone’s Bluetooth menu.

SEGA has also released a trailer showing off both games, which you can check out below:

SEGA Live-streams Footage for Three New Mario & Sonic 2020 Events

SEGA showed game play from three new events in their Tokyo Game Show livestream earlier today. Twitter user SonicWindBlue ripped the footage and posted it to showcase the new modes.

Two new dream events and a new retro event were shown. To see the footage, check out SonicWindBlue’s tweets below:

If you want to watch the Japanese-language livestream, you can check it out in the embedded Youtube video below. The Mario & Sonic stuff starts at around the two-hour forty-minute mark:

SAGE Shows Off Its 2019 Lineup with New Trailer

Every year, SAGE gives Sonic fans around the world a stage to show off their game programming and design chops to the community. This year will be no different, and they’ve dropped a little trailer to whet our appetites for what this year’s exhibitors have in store. Check it out below!

SAGE, or the Sonic Amateur Game Expo, is an online exhibition held every year by Sonic Fan Games HQ. The expo gives creators a chance to show-off Sonic fan games, hacks, and original games inspired by the franchise. SAGE 2019 is being held on September 27th through October 4th.

Chu Chu Rocket! Universe coming to Apple Arcade

A new entry in Sonic Team’s long-dead Chu Chu Rocket franchise made a surprise appearance in an Apple press release today: Chu Chu Rocket! Universe.

The game is being developed by Hardlight, and is slated to come to the Apple Arcade service, a video game subscription service for Apple Devices that will let subscribers play a variety of games for $4.99 a month on iPhones, iPads, Apple TVs and Macs. It’s important to note that Apple’s press release specifies that it is a “mobile and subscription service” exclusive which doesn’t necessarily rule out console ports of the game, although devices that support Apple Arcade are the only confirmed platforms.

The game has 100 3D puzzle courses, and features gameplay that appears pretty faithful to the Dreamcast original: direct your mice to rocket ships without letting cats devouring them all. Chu Chu Rocket! Universe is slated to launch alongside the debut of the Apple Arcade service on September 19. Chu Chu Rocket! won’t be the only Sonic Team series hitting the service either: as we reported earlier this year, Sonic Racing will also be coming to Apple Arcade.

The Dreamcast original was the first game on the system to feature online play, so a sequel being announced a day after the system’s 20th anniversary is neat timing. This will be the first new entry in the franchise since the Dreamcast game was ported to iOS and Android back in 2011.

Nothing else is known about the game. Check below for a screenshot and game play footage:

 

 

Happy 20th Anniversary, SEGA Dreamcast!

Back in 1999, SEGA was on the ropes. Their 32-bit console, the SEGA Saturn, had been a failure everywhere but Japan. The SEGA Mega Drive/Genesis was long dead. The arcade market was struggling. Japan was in the midst of a decade-long depression. The SEGA Dreamcast was its last hope at remaining a contender as a console maker.

Of course, we all know how that went by now. The Dreamcast struggled in Japan, initially selling out when it launched on November 27 1998, but then failing to meet subsequent sales targets. The Dreamcast had a record breaking launch in America, where it sold 500,000 units in just two weeks. The system also did very well in Europe, where it managed to sell 400,000 units in about 5 weeks. Unfortunately, this success would not last, and on January 31, 2001, SEGA announced that the system would be discontinued.

Despite its short life, the Dreamcast has become something of a cult hit among hardcore gamers. It saw many acclaimed releases, like Soul Calibur, Skies of Arcadia, Jet Grind Radio, Grandia 2, and Shenmue. It pioneered console online gaming, becoming the first system to feature a built in modem, which allowed many developers to inject online functionality into their games, including DLC, leaderboards, and online multiplayer.

Around here, the system is probably best known for being the machine that powered Sonic’s first true 3D outings, permanently changing the franchise forever.

Today marks the 20th anniversary of the system’s iconic 9.9.99 US launch. Do you have anything memories of that launch? Or the system? Or its games? Feel free to share them in the comments below!

This won’t be our only Dreamcast article marking the occasion. Keep an eye out for a few more articles over the next month!

The Official Sonic Art & Design Book To Be Updated With 32 New Pages In Next Reprint

Video game art dealer Cook & Becker have announced that the next reprint of the Official Sonic the Hedgehog Art & Design Book will feature 32 pages of new content from Sonic Mania, Sonic Forces, and Team Sonic Racing. First released in 2016 as part of Sonic’s 25th anniversary, the book originally only went as far as releases from that year.

Cook & Becker hinted at this last week, leaving many to speculate that Sonic Mania would be receiving its own art book. However, according to the company’s twitter account, there would not have been enough content from the game to fill out its own art book, so they decided to update their 25th anniversary art book instead.

The updated book can be pre-ordered off of their website for $39.99 (plus $12.50 for shipping), and is currently scheduled to ship sometime in November.

They released some samples of the new pages, which you can check out in the gallery below:

Mario & Sonic 2020’s Complete Character Roster Appears To Have Been Revealed

A SEGA site for the upcoming Tokyo Game Show lineup includes sample imagery that appears to show the total character roster for Mario & Sonic at the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020.

Continue reading Mario & Sonic 2020’s Complete Character Roster Appears To Have Been Revealed

Cover for Sonic #25 Released

Comic books, especially Sonic comics, traditionally have major events, special stories, or cool covers every 25thissue. By the looks of things, IDW’s iteration of Sonic looks to continue that tradition with this new cover from Tyson Hesse featuring every major character from the series. Hesse has done work on various Sonic comics in the past and recently directed the Sonic Mania Adventures animated web series.

There’s no solicitation to go with this one. Check out the cover below!

Previews for Sonic #20, Tangle & Whisper #2 released

IDW has released three-page previews of their next few upcoming Sonic comics through Apple Books. Both Sonic the Hedgehog #20 and Tangle & Whisper #2 now have previews available. Sonic #20 will be released later this week on August 28, while T&W #2 is coming next Wednesday.

Check out the previews, covers, and solicitations for the issues below:

“Crisis City, Part 2”! When a powerful ally succumbs to the Metal Virus, Omega and Sonic stand alone against an infected city. And even if they can save the remaining civilians from the zombots, will they be safe from Sonic?

The conclusion of the Crisis City storyline, but not the Metal Virus saga

If Tangle and Whisper know they’re being led into a trap, the imposter they’ve been chasing can’t get the drop on them, right? Who is this mysterious imposter, why is Whisper so adamant about taking him down, and will Tangle be able to help-or just get in the way? Find out in “Ambush”!

Mario and Sonic Go Old School in New Retro Olympic Events

Back at E3, SEGA hinted at a new “retro mode” for Mario & Sonic at the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020, but wouldn’t clarify anything beyond the brief clip we saw in the E3 trailer – today we finally have clarification! 10 events in the game will have alternate “Classic 2D Events” that utilize retro sprites and graphics, and take place during the 1964 Tokyo Olympics!

Continue reading Mario and Sonic Go Old School in New Retro Olympic Events

Sonic Now Has Back-to-School Merchandise

It’s that time of year again: summer vacation is drawing to a close and kids are getting ready to back to school. With a new school year, comes news products, and this year SEGA has several new pieces of merchandise for Sonic fans, for sale at a few different retailers. Continue reading Sonic Now Has Back-to-School Merchandise

Happy 30th Anniversary, SEGA Genesis!

Today marks 30 years since the SEGA Genesis (known as the SEGA Mega Drive elsewhere, the name was changed in North America due to trademark issues) made its debut!

This name would turn out to be quite fitting, as the SEGA Genesis became the system that would not only make SEGA and many of its franchises household names on the continent, it would also serve as the birth place for the company’s most successful character: a blue hedgehog named Sonic!

Continue reading Happy 30th Anniversary, SEGA Genesis!

Sonic Boom’s First Season to Finally Get DVD Release

For years, anyone wanting to own Sonic Boom on physical media have had to deal with piece-meal releases, whether it’s America’s two meager 8 episode volumes, or the UK’s more substantial 13 episode volumes. According to a new Amazon listing, it looks like those days might be finally coming to an end, with Sonic Boom Season 1, Volume 1, coming courtesy of NCircle Entertainment.

Slated for release on October 1, the two-disc volume comes in two packages: a $25 version bundled with Sonic & Eggman action figures made by TOMY, and a $15 version that just has the show. The first volume comes with 26 episodes, which covers half of the first season.

You can pre-order the DVD here. You can check out the included figures, DVD arc, and a list of included episodes in the images below:

The episodes are listed out of order on the back.

Currently, there’s no word of when (or if) the second volume is coming. Given that this isn’t the show’s first DVD release, it’s probably only a matter of time.

The Best References In OK K.O.! Let’s Be Heroes – Let’s Meet Sonic

Sonic the Hedgehog recently made his appearance in an action-packed episode of OK K.O.! Let’s Be Heroes, in which the nods to Sonic the Hedgehog history came thick and fast! Here is our comprehensive TSS guide to the many references contained in the episode!

Warning – MANY spoilers ahead!

Continue reading The Best References In OK K.O.! Let’s Be Heroes – Let’s Meet Sonic

SEGA Shows off Mario & Sonic At the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020’s Arcade Edition

SEGA has given us our first good look at the Mario & Sonic 2020 Tokyo Olympics arcade game. The screenshots and video show off a few events, including track, rock climbing, discus throwing, and long-jumping. Continue reading SEGA Shows off Mario & Sonic At the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020’s Arcade Edition

Sonic & Tails Crossing Over into OK K.O.! Let’s Be Heroes! Cartoon

Cartoon Network has revealed at their panel that Sonic and Tails will be guest starring in an episode of one of their shows: OK K.O.! Let’s Be Heroes. IGN has released a short clip from the episode, which we’ve embedded below: Continue reading Sonic & Tails Crossing Over into OK K.O.! Let’s Be Heroes! Cartoon

Artist Reveals Concept Images of Canceled Sonic Racing Game for GBA

Yesterday, to celebrate Sonic’s 28th anniversary, former Backbone Entertainment artist Arvin Bautista released images from a never-before-seen pitch of a Sonic racing game for the Game Boy Advance: Sonic EXTREME!

Continue reading Artist Reveals Concept Images of Canceled Sonic Racing Game for GBA

New MegaSD peripheral lets you play SEGA CD games without the CD (for a price)

It seems like there has been no end to what the SEGA Genesis/Mega Drive community has been able to accomplish over the last decade. From impressive flash cartridges to wireless controllers, from homebrew software to component cables, to even a brand new FPGA-powered high definition clone console, modern Genesis gamers now have access to tech they could have only dreamed of a decade ago. This latest piece of technology from Terraonion is easily the most impressive thing to come out yet: the MegaSD. Continue reading New MegaSD peripheral lets you play SEGA CD games without the CD (for a price)

Iizuka wants to take on “a new challenge” for Sonic’s 30th anniversary, might consider bringing Sonic to eSports

In a recent interview with Japanese gaming website 4Gamer, Takashi Iizuka, the head of Sonic Team, answered some questions regarding Sonic’s future. The following excerpts from that interview were translated by Nintendo Everything.

When asked about Sonic’s upcoming 30th anniversary in 2021, Iizuka said that “planning would need to begin now,” and that he’d “really like for us to take on some sort of new challenge for it though.”

On the subject of Sonic in eSports, Iizuka was ambivalent, saying that because Sonic is primarily an action platformer, going into eSports “might not be feasible.” However, he did express a willingness to take on new genre challenges, bringing up the recently released Team Sonic Racing as an example. He indicated that “there’s always the chance that something suited to eSports might come out of those different projects.” The Sonic franchise is no stranger to spin-offs in other genres, so it would appear that an eSports focused Sonic spin-off is at least a possibility, albeit a remote one.

While this likely has nothing to do with Sonic’s still-far-off 30th anniversary, Iizuka did confirm that a new 3D Sonic title was in development earlier this year at SXSW’s Sonic panel.

TSS @ E3 2019: Sonic and Mario star on the E3 badge insert this year

Every year, a SEGA property is usually featured prominently on the E3 badge. Last year was Valkyria Chronicles 4 and Persona 5: Dancing in Starlight. This year, it’s Mario & Sonic at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games and the SEGA Genesis Mini. Our own Jason Berry sent us some pictures, take a look!

TSS @ E3 2019: We’ve got SEGA E3 Booth Photos! UPDATED

Can’t make it to E3? Don’t sweat it! We here at Sonic Stadium are at the event right now, and we’ve got some pictures. It may not be the same as being there…but it’s something, right?

Check out the photos, taken by our E3 team, below:

In case you can’t tell, that last image shows the genuine rock climbing wall SEGA has set up at the booth.

Also, check out this bonus photo of the shirt people get for playing the Mario & Sonic demo:

UPDATE: We’ve got more photos, this time of the SEGA Genesis Mini booth, taken by Dreadknux. The last one has a surprise cameo of SEGAbit’s own Kori Maru, dressed up as Virtua Fighter’s Akira! Check them out in the gallery below:

Also, Dreadknux was able to meet Hiroshi Nishiyama, artist for the Sonic Adventure series:

We may be updating this post with additional photos of SEGA’s booth throughout the event, so stay tuned.

Phantasy Star Online 2 finally coming to North America for Xbox and PC

Today’s Microsoft press conference had a surprise for long-time SEGA fans: Sonic Team’s Phantasy Star Online 2 is finally coming west, exclusively to PC and Xbox One. The game is scheduled for release in the US and Canada Spring 2020. The game has not yet been confirmed for release PAL regions. Check out the reveal trailer below:

Phantasy Star Online 2 will be free-to-play, with no level caps or microtransaction-only weapons, although microtransactions will still be available for players who “need additional help,” according to SEGA’s press release.

This announcement came after a seven-year long wait. PSO2 was first released in Japan in July of 2012, with a western release confirmed for 2013 shortly afterward.

Stay tuned for future Phantasy Star Online 2 details, including whether or not it will ever come to the rest of the world.

IDW releases August Solicits for Sonic Comics

IDW has released covers and plot summaries for both Sonic the Hedgehog #20 and Tangle & Whisper #2. Check them out below!

JUN190654
(W) Ian Flynn (A) Jack Lawrence (CA) Evan Stanley

“Crisis City, Part 2”! When a powerful ally succumbs to the Metal Virus, Omega and Sonic stand alone against an infected city. And even if they can save the remaining civilians from the zombots, will they be safe from Sonic?

The conclusion of the Crisis City storyline, but not the Metal Virus saga!

In Shops: Aug 28, 2019
SRP: $3.99
W) Ian Flynn (A/CA) Evan Stanley

If Tangle and Whisper know they’re being led into a trap, the imposter they’ve been chasing can’t get the drop on them, right? Who is this mysterious imposter, why is Whisper so adamant about taking him down, and will Tangle be able to help-or just get in the way? Find out in “Ambush”!

A new mini-series featuring two of the most popular Sonic the Hedgehog characters!
Tangle & Whisper are a classic odd-couple in this adventurous team-up!

In Shops: Aug 21, 2019
SRP: $3.99
Each of these comics have alternate covers, which are currently unreleased. Be sure to stay tuned for future IDW Sonic news!

Team Sonic Racing Debuts New Voice Actors for Several Sonic Characters

With the release of Team Sonic Racing, the Sonic voice cast appears to have gotten its first major shakeup since 2010. Six characters have been recast with new voice actors, including Zavok, Omega, Blaze, Omachao, Silver, and most notably, Knuckles. Continue reading Team Sonic Racing Debuts New Voice Actors for Several Sonic Characters

Sonic Spinball coming to the SEGA Mega Drive Mini

SEGA revealed another ten games for their upcoming SEGA Mega Drive/Genesis Mini today, including Sonic Spinball. Developed in 1993 by the American-based SEGA Technical Institute, Sonic Spinball put Sonic into pinball-inspired levels, where he had to collect the chaos emeralds and defeat bosses.

Spinball marks fourth Sonic game to be announced for SEGA’s mini console, joining Sonic 1 and 2, and Dr. Robotnik’s Mean Bean Machine. Check out the list of all ten newly revealed games below:

• Alex Kidd in the Enchanted Castle
• Beyond Oasis
• Ghouls and Ghosts
• Golden Axe
• Phantasy Star IV
• Street Fighter 2: Special Championship Edition
• Mega Man: The Wily Wars
• Sonic Spinball
• Vectorman
• Wonderboy in Monster World

With ten more games left to be announced, it is very possible that SEGA has one more Sonic game waiting in the wings for their mini console. Stay tuned!

IDW’s Sonic comics sell out again

IDW has revealed that their latest Sonic comics have all sold out. Sonic #14, #15, as well as the recently released Sonic Annual have all sold out “at the distributor level.”

This comes as IDW’s Sonic comic has been entering its second major story arc, with a Tangle and Whisper mini-series on the way this summer. The latest issue, Sonic the Hedgehog #16, just released today.

New costume lets you dress up like Movie Sonic

Whether you find Movie Sonic to be good or terrifying, you can now dress up as him for Halloween, thanks to a new costume from Rubie’s Costume Company.

Rubie’s is the company behind those other Sonic costumes that sometimes make the rounds of social media, and this one looks pretty similar to those, except with the movie version’s fur textures and color schemes:

Amazon is selling it in small, medium and large sizes for $45. It’s scheduled to ship August 1.

Sonic Talk Episode 60: Super Smash Butts

On this latest episode of Sonic Talk, hosts Jason, Alex and GX talk about all the latest Sonic news, including the library of the SEGA Genesis Mini, the return of Mario & Sonic at the Olympics, the development materials for Sonic 2 released by game artist Tom Payne, and the last few issues of IDW’s Sonic comic. Continue reading Sonic Talk Episode 60: Super Smash Butts

UPDATED: Still of Sonic Movie’s Robotnik leaked, trailer incoming

We may finally be getting our first look at the Sonic movie today! Earlier, SEGAbits posted an image of Jim Carrey’s Robotnik that is supposedly from the movie’s first trailer. SEGAbits also said that the trailer could hit as early as tomorrow. Continue reading UPDATED: Still of Sonic Movie’s Robotnik leaked, trailer incoming

Sonic and Friends Battle it Out in Part 2 of Team Sonic Racing: Overdrive

SEGA released the second part of their Team Sonic Racing: Overdrive animated short series earlier today. Directed by Tyson Hesse and animated by Neko Productions, the short sees Team Sonic and Team Shadow battle for first place. Which team will prevail? Find out in the video below! Continue reading Sonic and Friends Battle it Out in Part 2 of Team Sonic Racing: Overdrive

SEGA Mega Drive/Genesis Mini Revealed at SEGA FES 2019, to feature Sonic 2, developed by M2

The long awaited mini version of SEGA’s 16-bit console has finally been officially revealed at tonight’s SEGA FES 2019. The mini console will launch worldwide later this year on September 19, and will feature 40 games, including Sonic the Hedgehog 2. As we reported earlier this year, SEGA only wanted one game per series on the console, and ran a poll to decide whether Sonic 1 or 2 would be included. Don’t expect anymore Sonic games to be announced later. The console is powered by a mini USB cable, and has the power/reset buttons in the same places as the original console, and even features a replica (though definitely non-functional) cartridge slot you can stick your finger in!

The console will come in two different SKUs: a one-controller 6980 yen unit and a two controller 8980 yen unit. Though no western prices were shown, that translates to $62.95/£48.28 and $80.99/£62.11 respectively.

UPDATE: It has been confirmed that M2 is developing the Mega Drive Mini’s software. M2 is the same company that worked on the the SEGA 3D Classics for 3DS and is currently working on the SEGA AGES line of games for Nintendo Switch.

As always, stay tuned to Sonic Stadium for future updates on the Mega Drive Mini! Check out some images of the console, as well as an image of Sonic 2 running on the console, below:

Haunted Castle race track, music revealed for Team Sonic Racing

SEGA revealed a new, ghost-themed race track for Team Sonic Racing today: Haunted Castle. As with most of TSR’s track reveals, this new course was shown alongside its soundtrack, which was composed by Tee Lopes, performed by S.A.M.E., and features Tei Sena on violin (which is easily the highlight).

Despite its name, the race track itself appears to be based on a distorted version of Rooftop Run, with the clocktower in the image bearing a striking (though not exact) resemblance to the clock tower from that level. Check out the image and music below:

Team Sonic Racing will launch on Switch, PS4, Xbox One and PC on May 21st. With only 13 of the game’s 21 tracks known, we can probably expect the rate of new track reveals to accelerate as the game’s release approaches. Be sure to stay tuned to Sonic Stadium for that and more!