December 14, 2002 in
It's almost here! Sonic Advance 2 is just about a week away in Japan, and The Sonic Stadium is here to let you in on yet MORE exclusive information on the game. After we stumbled across a video promoting the game for this year's TGS a month or so ago, you'd wonder why we never covered it beforehand.
Well, we could say that we were waiting for the right moment... erm? Either way, we're the first to tell you about it!
In this special News Report, we are going to reveal everything that is different - and new shots of the levels you already know about, and extra *NEW* screens from us too! You'll also be able to look at - dun dun duuuuunnnn! - the very first Boss in the Game!!! Are we good to you or what? Only @ The Sonic Stadium!
Well, the first thing that's changed is the Title Screen. Unfortunately it looks a little bland for our liking, but hey, it's only a Title Screen. Shot 2 shows the new-look character select. The animations from Sonic Advance 1 are here - no surprises. Cream the Rabbit was unfortunately nowhere to be seen while the game was going off at a blasting speed - we got to see Sonic, Tails and Knuckles in action, however, and there were some very small and some significant surprises in store while we were watching, drooling... wiping our chins...
When you select a character, you get taken to a new level 'select' screen, which is a map of the journey you take throughout the game. Whether each character will be able to take different routes through each level, ala Sonic 3 & Knuckles, remains to be seen though. Another thing is the addition of a new 'starting up' animation. You can see the Sonic start-up that we mentioned in the last report - getting ready and then unleashing great speedy forces when the 'START' message appears.
Forgive the text there, that's the Tokyo Game Show for ya. And, as mentioned before, some of the shots may be a tad on the blurry side, as the video was slightly dodgy when it reached us. Still, you can make out the important stuff, eh? These three shots up there show a little bit of the first level. As you can see, the first few seconds are full of little loops and such, and you'll notice later on that Dimps has reworked the level design to a great extent.
Look at these shots, because they show some small details, but are very significant. First of all, Tails and Knuckles can now GRIND on rails, much like Sonic could (and still can in Advance 2) from the first Sonic Advance. Tails is grinding in the Zone with the Music setting, and Knuckles is seen in a new Ice Level.
The above screens are of particular mention, as it shows the VERY FIRST LOOK at one of Sonic Advance 2's bosses. This is the Eggman boss from the first Zone, which in action is a perfect mix of Sonic & Knuckles' Mushroom Hill Zone Boss (where you have to constantly run to catch up) and Sonic Advance 1's Neo Green Hill Zone Boss (as this boss is armed with a similar looking mallet). You saw it here first - and an indication of the improvement of the bosses in this game.
It's no good us rabbiting on about how we saw the game and how much better the levels look in comparison to Sonic Advance 1, if we had no proof. Well, Sega of Japan have cobbled together a rather 'jumpy' version of the movie we saw, but we also want to show it to you in pictures. The line of shots you see above is a kinda "picture/screenshot story" of one of the wicked aspects improved in the game - the loops.
In particular, this one that Tails is running about is an incredibly massive loop - in the first shot you see Tails running up the steep incline, and you see him leave that incline, showing just how gigantic this loop really is. Tails meets the second half of the loop, and as he makes his way down you'll notice a classic Sonic loop technique - Tails runs behind the previous platform he was currently running on when heading towards the loop. Tails then re-emerges into a new section of the level.
As well as showing us some very exciting new stuff, the video also re-introduced us to some of the Zones we know about already, as well as some of the gimmicks we may expect to see there. For example, in the Music style Zone, we saw Tails and Sonic (individually) bouncing on keyboard keys, with all-new animations to show. New sections in the Lava Zone included some 'warp' pipes, akin to those seen in Sonic Advance 1's Secret Base Zone, and Sonic 2's Chemical Plant Zone.
Well, you thought that was it, didn't you? Well, think again - because we're so fantastic (yes, we know ^_^;), we've managed to snap up some all new Sonic Advance 2 screenshots, which you'll find here.
We hope you, like us, are incredibly excited for this game now. The video quality was obviously not much to write home about, but some of the features and new accessible areas displayed were more than enough to let us scream, just that so you know before you grab the Japanese Import!
The new screen above with Tails is a bit of an enigma. We haven't seen that Zone before during our peek at the game... Sonic also seems to be in a new area, possibly in an Ice Zone.
Sonic Advance 2 will be hitting Japanese shores on 19th December, which is next Thursday - prepare yourself for some quality old-skool Sonic platforming on your GBA, just how it should have been done the first time around! We'll give you the best and latest information - FIRST - as it arrives!
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Dec 14 2002
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