For those of you confused about Phantasy Star Online 2’s upcoming update “New Genesis,” you’re in good company, because it’s connected to PSO2, but also it’s its own thing, but… Okay, you know what, let’s just break it down:
According to the PSO2 official news blog, New Genesis will release in place of a new episode next year and targets bringing the 8-year-old game to fit modern tech and design expectations. It features a new world, new enemies, a new combat system, a more open map (though it’s premature to call it true open world yet), and significant visual upgrades.
The news post refers to the setup as “twin universes,” noting that you can you can swap between playing original PSO2 and New Genesis. New Genesis’ PC requirements will be a step above PSO2, but your created characters and emotes can shift between the two games. Both remain free-to-play and use the same account. Further, your weapons, units, and Mags can move over from PSO2 to New Genesis…with some significant caveats.
You will effectively have to treat the two as separate games, as you can’t bring over most of your items and basic character progression (your level/EXP, skills, arts, etc…). Weapon stats may change, and you may not be able to use certain weapons at all until the required class is put in the game (which may imply some current classes won’t be available at launch of New Genesis). Same with Units, but they will not be visible on your character. Mags will… exist, but they won’t impact your gameplay or character, suggesting they could be cosmetic only.
Much like Final Fantasy 14 and A Realm Reborn, this mid-life drastic shift is a high risk move with potentially high rewards, especially if PSO2 continues to grow outside of Japan. At the moment, only Xbox One and Windows 10 are the confirmed platforms with the statement “If PSO2 is added to new platforms, we plan to make PSO2: NGS available on those platforms as well.”
Anyone with an Origin Access Premiere subscription now has access to the PC version of Sonic Mania through EA’s Origin storefront. For those unfamiliar with the service, EA Access Premiere is the higher tier version of the Origin Access service. This service provides access to a library of games, discounts to all games bought on the storefront, and “extra content” for new EA games for $15 a month.
It is the vanilla version of the game, meaning that the Encore DLC will still need to be bought separately.
UPDATE: According to twitter user @CodenameGamma, who hacks and reverse-engineers games like Sonic Mania, this version of the game adds the infamous Denuvo DRM back into the game. The Steam release of Sonic Mania originally released with this DRM, before it was removed due to fan outcry. As a result, this version of Sonic Mania will not be supported by the community.
Whisper the Wolf, the fan-favorite socially anxious sniper from IDW’s Sonic comic, has arrived in the mobile version of Sonic Forces in a new ten day event: Guardian Angel. Whisper brings her wisp-fueled variable whispon sniper rifle to the race, which allows her to access three new power-ups: cyan laser, green hover, and pink spikes.
Cyan laser fires a beam both forward and behind Whisper, while green hover gives Whisper a speed boost and extends her air time. Her final power-up, pink spike, lays spike traps for rivals to run into.
To unlock Whisper, players will have until July 27 to collect 60 character cards by completing specific missions. Whisper’s stats give her 8/10 on speed, 6/10 on acceleration, and a 7/10 on strength. As she is a rare character rather than an event character, it should be possible to get her cards after the event is over, although they will be quite rare.
I am currently halfway towards unlocking her, so be sure to check back later for footage of her in action!
Whisper the Wolf, friend of Tangle and the other fan favorite new character from IDW Sonic, has arrived in a new event following Tangle’s from last week.
Just like with Tangle, players will need to collect 500 Whispers tokens to unlock her. You can check out footage I captured of her being unlocked and played below! The event, which started a few days ago, will end on July 17.
Whisper will also be heading to Sonic Forces in the near future, probably right after Tangle’s event, which also ends on July 17.
Less than a week after popping up in Sonic Dash, fan-favorite IDW Sonic character Tangle the Lemur has now found her way into Sonic Forces Mobile in a new week-and-half-long event, “It’s Hero Time!”
She comes to the game as a rare character, and players will need to earn 60 character cards to unlock her. These cards are earned by completing specific missions during the event, which will last from today until July 17.
Tangle brings two new power ups to the game: tail strike, a damaging short-range dash that can take up two item slots, and tail spring, which will let Tangle essentially perform a powered-up spin attack. When it comes to her stats, she scores a 7/10 in speed, 5/10 in acceleration, and 10/10 in strength.
Whisper will likely be coming to the game later this month, after Tangle’s event ends. Stay tuned to this post for Tangle gameplay footage!
While Tangle and Whisper will be coming to Sonic Forces: Mobile very soon, Tangle herself is available in Sonic Dash today! This lightfooted lemur is the first playable Sonic character taken from the comics and not from the games themselves (Sally and the Freedom Fighters had a non-playable cameo in Sonic Spinball). Tangle is playable by unlocking 500 Tangle tokens in an event going on all this week. Shouldn’t take players too long to unlock her as a good player can nab 20+ tokens per game easy.
The event only lasts a week, so make sure you get in some time on Sonic Dash soon!
UPDATE: Check out footage of Tangle in action below:
Over 25 years have passed since the last time a Sonic comic character made an appearance in a Sonic game, and that was just a cameo in Sonic Spinball’s bonus stages. The streak is over. IDW Sonic’s Tangle and Whisper are coming to the mobile version of Sonic Forces.
They will be part of a 3-part unlock event that Hardlight says will last a week. They’ve arrived “just in time” to take part in Dr. Eggman’s Egg Pawn Assault 2.0, a community event where you can earn free Tangle and Whisper cards as prizes.
Now, you may recall that the duo were found in Sonic Dash’s files yesterday. Well, it’s very likely that this will still happen. It is not uncommon for non-costume characters to be added to both games. So, all indications are Hardlight will announce that soon.
But now we get to the biggest question of all. Will this mean that Tangle and Whisper will appear in a main series Sonic game? Well, no one knows. Even Ian Flynn said on Twitter that he has no idea if this “opens the doors to anything else”. So, we’ll just have to wait and see.
Sonic’s mobile games have been focused on making more Sonic characters playable for years now, making deeper and deeper cuts into the game canon. Now, Hardlight seems to be mining Sonic’s IDW comics for new characters, according to data uncovered by Twitter user Bluwolfboy. He dug into the latest build of the Android version of Sonic Dash, and uncovered two new characters: Tangle the Lemur and Whisper the Wolf! These two characters were introduced early on in Sonic’s IDW run, and became so popular the soon got their own four-part mini series!
Bluwolfboy uncovered fully 3D models and character icons. They also posted proof that the characters are in the data, and Tails Channel was able to independently verify it themselves.
This is a major milestone, not just for IDW Sonic, but for Sonic comics in general. Aside from the Freedom Fighter’s cameos in Sonic Spinball, and a few canceled games, this marks the first time Sonic comics characters have been present in a game! That said, we’re probably still a long way off from any members of the Archie cast popping up in anything.
You can check out Tangle and Whisper’s game assets below. If you want access to the actual models, check out the source at the bottom of the page! Obviously, it is currently not known when these characters will be available, but given they are in the data we probably won’t be waiting too long!
The opinions expressed in this article are those of Jason Berry and dot not necessarily reflect the opinions of the TSS staff.
Guilty pleasures. Fan favorites. Cult classics. Names used for a variety of entertainment from movies to music and of course, video games. Usually, it refers to something that is flawed, but nonetheless, enjoyable.
The same can be said for a lot, and I mean a LOT of Sonic games out there. Games that are seriously flawed, but still have some fans who enjoy them. I’m still baffled by some people who say that they loved Sonic ‘06 but hey, don’t let me tell you what not to enjoy. Heck, I kinda like Rise of Lyric and that game is in an even more unfinished state than ‘06. But what I want to talk about are Sonic games that were poorly reviewed by critics, but still enjoyed by fans or vice-versa. Games that are on the cusp of greatness, but some element holds it back. Games that make you say “yeah, it’s not the best, but I like it.” Games that are polished in their design, but their design is ultimately flawed. These are my five Sonic games just shy of greatness.
Sonic and the Black Knight
This is low on the list because it’s genuinely a bad game in the design department, but it has two elements that really shine. Sonic and the Black Knight was the second in the short-lived storybook series just after the arguably better Sonic and the Secret Rings. So why is this one on the list and not Secret Rings? While I didn’t care much for the constant stop-and-slash gameplay of Black Knight, there were two things that really stood out for me.
One, the story is actually one of my favorites in the series. Sonic is back in a storybook world, only this time, he has the knowledge from the previous game to know that his friends are not the same ones from his world and only look the same in appearance. Also, Sonic’s smart enough to realize that something’s off with the titular villain and the surprise twist reveal is something I didn’t see coming. It also includes a moral that, well… you don’t see very often.
Two, the music! Crush 40 is back along with a great, guitar-heavy soundtrack by Jun Sunoe and other talented composers including Tommy Talarico. There are also a few remixes of previous Sonic music, but overall a rockin’ soundtrack to a sub-par game.
Sonic Lost World
Boy did everyone love this game when it made the early rounds at preview shows like E3 and Comic-Con. Most people gave this new and very different entry in the Sonic series a lot of love… until it came out. It’s not that changing the formula for once wasn’t a good idea. I love the boost formula but could’ve used a break. However, once again as most games you see on this list, the biggest flaw is the game design.
Sonic Lost World was doing it’s best to rip off Mario Galaxy and it just didn’t work. The level design, for the most part, was very good. It was the controls themselves that fell apart. Sonic with a run button just felt wrong. Not allowing a more analog run control was a mistake in my opinion, but the other problem was the game’s newest gimmick, the parkour control. Basically, Sonic could climb and run alongside walls in a parkour-style to traverse certain levels. However, it was very hit and miss. Sonic would start to slide off the wall very quickly and it was hard to bounce from wall to wall. It took a more advanced level of skill than normally required from a platformer. Surprisingly, the 3DS port had the opposite problem. The parkour controls worked very well and should have been implemented in the console game, while the level design was pure torture. Had we had gotten both solid, parkour controls along with good level design, Sonic Lost Word could have been a hit.
Sonic Forces COULD have been a great game under the right circumstances. It’s using the Hedgehog Engine 2, Classic Sonic is back, you have your classic 2-D and boost gameplay just like Generations. You can even design your original character (do not steal), making every Sonic fanfic writer’s dream come true. In fact, it did okay with critics or at least critics who weren’t that familiar with Sonic. But as a fan of Sonic, you played the game and realized right away that something was off. It looked like Generations, but it didn’t quite play like it.
I think the main problem lies in that a good amount of the team from Sonic Colors worked on this game including the director, Morio Kishimoto. Now don’t get me wrong, I love Sonic Colors. But that game has very different platform physics than Generations or Unleashed. However, this game seems to have the engine of Generations, but with the jumping physics of Colors. Casual game players might not notice, but if you’re a Sonic fan, it’ll throw you off a bit. Like riding a bicycle, only now the bicycle controls like a unicycle.
What also doesn’t help is the terrible writing once again from Pontac and Graff. I’ll admit, I loved the story in Colors and laughed at Eggman’s PSA’s but those two are comedy writers, and every time they attempt drama in Sonic games, it falls flat. Sonic was supposed to be captured by Eggman and tortured for months, but when we see him, he’s the same ol’ Sonic he’s always been. Crackin’ jokes with (not) Zavoc.
“What goes up, must come down…” Much like the quality of gameplay in Sonic Heroes. Now, Sonic Heroes is definitely one of my “guilty pleasures”. It has a lot going for it that I like. It offers the 3-D gameplay similar to the last Sonic Adventure games, but stripped down to a level-by-level structure, much like the 2-D classics. The new gimmick in this one is that you control three characters at once. One for speed (Sonic, Shadow, Amy, Espio), one for power (Knuckles, Omega, Big, Vector), and one for flight (Tails, Rouge, Cream, Charmy). Four teams with four stories of their own. Sonic Heroes did a lot right. It brought back the Chaotix, introduced Omega, and had probably Jun Sunoe’s and Crush 40’s best tracks in any of their games. “What I’m made of” is unironically a damn good song and I’ll fight anyone who says otherwise (not really). For the most part, the “three at a time” formula works and helps keep the platforming gameplay moving at a fairly fast pace. It even did fairly well by critics (for a Sonic game of that era). Seaside Hill is still a joy to play. So what’s keeping it from being one of the best? Level design. That’s the biggest problem. Sometimes it works great (like the aforementioned Seaside Hill) while others are a disaster. Casino Park and Bingo Highway still infuriate me to this day. The game’s difficulty constantly spikes. You can be having a great time of it only to have one of the most frustrating experiences on the very next level. It also doesn’t help that this was the first Sonic game to introduce a massive amount of annoying talking during gameplay. I just want to reach into my screen and choke Tails every time he says “Look at all those Eggman’s robots!”.For a child with a high IQ, he sure has poor grammar.
Now, if you’re a big fan of Sonic Heroes, I understand. There’s a lot to love here. But it’s definitely not without its faults. Speaking of a very faulty Sonic game that I love…
I friggin’ LOVE Sonic Unleashed! But it’s definitely got its flaws.
It starts out soooo good! That Marza animated intro is the best Sonic…. Anything! (Speaking of, when’s that “Lupin the 3rd: The First” movie hitting the western markets?) We then meet Chip and… yeah, his mileage may vary depending on if he grows on you or not. We then meet humans and OMG!! They actually fit well in Sonic’s world for once! Giving them a cartoon appearance works perfectly. Then, after some story introductions and a training level, we are introduced to our first full level in Apotos, “Windmill Isle Act 2” and OMG is it amazing!! Sonic’s running at incredible speeds through narrow streets that blur by. Dodging buildings left and right, grinding rails and smashing through Badniks. It was the first Sonic game to introduce the 3-D boost mechanics that are still present in the latest games. It all feels sooo good and it’s over too soon. And then it happens. The Werehog. The thing both critics and fans felt was a bad idea and frankly, still is. Now, don’t get me wrong. The gameplay of the Werehog is actually not that bad! You’re running, jumping, getting into brawls and shimmying on ledges and it works out okay. It just doesn’t feel like that kind of gameplay belongs in a Sonic game. Also, each level is about a half-hour long or more. Compare that to the Sonic daytime levels that clock in at about five minutes. I’m bored ten minutes into the Werehog levels. The one thing the Wii did right was to break them up into smaller levels so you could take a break from them. The Wii version also didn’t have the frustrating medal hunt. Don’t have enough sun medals for the next Sonic daytime level? Too bad. Back to the old Werehog levels to hunt them down.
With all, it’s faults I’d still be lying if I didn’t say that Sonic Unleashed was one of my favorite 3-D Sonic games. The Werehog isn’t gonna be everyone’s cup of tea, but there are far worse Sonic gameplay options out there (I’m looking at you, Big in Sonic Adventure.)
So what flawed Sonic game do you enjoy? Are there any you think I should have put on the list? Let me know in the comments below.
Microsoft has got an interesting offer for Sonic fans out there, especially if you’re still planning to check out the new Sonic movie. Until June 15th, you can get the Sonic Movie for just $12.99 as part of the Gamer Flicks Sale. Doing so will also net you a free downloadable copy of Sonic Mania.
Tikal is now available on Sonic Forces Mobile for a limited time, as part of the game’s “Keeper of Chaos” event. The event will run for ten days, from now until June 15, and will give players a chance to unlock the character by completing specific missions. As a a “super rare” character, players must collect 30 cards before the event is over to unlock her.
Tikal has a speed rating of 10/10, an acceleration rating of 6/10, and a strength rating of 5/10. She brings three new power ups to the game, including:
Chao Guardian: Chao skip ahead to damage rivals.
Chao Chase: Run with chao, and gain an extra speed boost when you tag rivals.
Captive Light: A shining light appears in front of rivals, blinding them if they hit it.
If you miss this event, this likely won’t be your only chance to get her. This event comes on the heels of one that gave people another opportunity to unlock the Sonic movie characters, after all!
If we’re able to unlock Tikal before the event ends, check this space for footage of her in action.
Have you ever wanted a SEGA Game Gear that could actually fit in your pocket? Well good news, because SEGA did you one better with their newest mini console, the SEGA Game Gear Micro, which is so small you could (probably) swallow it, or at least fit comfortable in the palm of your hand. Continue reading SEGA Unveils the Absolutely Adorable Game Gear Micro
Tikal, the ancient echidna spirit from Sonic Adventure, will be joining the Sonic Forces mobile roster soon. SEGA Hardlight announced her on their Twitter account, with the image posted below.
This will be only the third time Tikal has ever been playable. There is currently no word on when she will be available, or how difficult she will be to unlock. Be sure to check Sonic Stadium for more details in the future!
Good things come in pairs, and following the Sonic sale on the U.S. Nintendo eShop, Microsoft joins in with intense 50% discounts on ten more Sonic games for multiple Xbox Marketplace regions, most of which aren’t part of the Nintendo sale. As a reminder, all these games are playable on the Xbox One, and will likely be playable on the Series X in the near future.
Prices in USD/GBP respectively.
Sonic the Hedgehog (Genesis) – $2.49/£1.69
Sonic the Hedgehog 2 (Genesis) – $2.49/£1.69
Sonic CD – $2.49/£1.69
Sonic the Fighters – $2.49/£1.69
Sonic Adventure – $2.49/£1.69
Sonic Adventure 2 – $4.99/£3.37
Sonic the Hedgehog 4 Episode I – $4.99/£3.37
Sonic the Hedgehog 4 Episode II – $7.49/£4.99
Sonic Unleashed – $7.49/£5.99
Sonic Generations – $9.99/£7.49
If you’re looking to complete your Sonic collection on 3DS or Switch, Sega has you covered.
From May 17th to the 26th, a huge library of Sonic games are on sale on the Nintendo eShop. The games include the following…
Mario and Sonic at the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 – $39.99
Sonic Forces – $9.99
Sonic Mania (Standard) – $9.99
Team Sonic Racing – $19.99
SEGA AGES Sonic the Hedgehog – $5.99
SEGA AGES Sonic the Hedgehog 2 – $5.99
Sonic Generations – $9.99
Sonic Lost World – $9.99
Sonic Boom: Shattered Crystal – $9.99
Sonic Boom: Fire and Ice – $9.99
3D Sonic the Hedgehog – $2.99
3D Sonic the Hedgehog 2 – $2.99
Authentic Sonic 1 beta footage remains an uncommon find, but in early January, Youtube user wadelyjp posted a Japanese Mega Drive promotional video featuring about six minutes of pre-final build Sonic 1! Wadelyjp’s account has uploaded a number of 90’s and early 2000’s Japanese promo videos and ads from Sega, Nintendo, Capcom, Konami, and others.
The video, which Google translates to “SEGA New Game Introduction Video Vol. 7,” immediately reveals itself to be a beta build, showing off several stage gimmicks and differences previously found in stills and magazine scans that never made it into the final published version. These differences include but are not limited to:
An tethered checkerboard ball that rolls down hills in Green Hill
An invincibility monitor on top of the first loop instead of a shield
A victory hop replacing Sonic’s rolling jump after spinning the end of level signpost
No special stage ring for having 50 rings at the end of an act
Sped up music in Green Hill Act 3, including the boss fight and end-of-level scoring (the same music speed you’d get from a power sneakers monitor)
UFOs in the sky of Marble Zone
No enemies in Star Light Zone
An unused spinning spike trap in Spring Yard Zone
A shorter air limit in Labyrinth Zone
An unused special stage layout? (There does not appear to be a direct equivalent in the released game)
This isn’t the first found footage of Sonic 1 beta; its predecessors include footage of Green Hill Act 1 in a build used for the pilot episode of Nick Arcade. However, this version contains two full levels, the game’s first boss fight, and clips from later stages. This unearthed gem shines as another clue in our ever growing view on how Sonic evolved from sketchbook to game.
Sonic is back at the Olympics again, this time on mobile devices! Sonic at the Olympics Games – Tokyo 2020 is now available on iOS and Android devices. The game lets players compete across 15 different events with various Sonic characters, and also includes a story mode complete with boss battles.
The game is “free to start,” with in-app purchases required to play the entire game.
There doesn’t appear to be a launch trailer, but go ahead and check out the official event trailer below:
As of the posting of this article, the game is not technically available to play. Users who download the game will receive an error message and a notification that the “online play for this game will start shortly.” We’ll update this article once we’ve confirmed the game is playable!
UPDATE: The game’s servers are now up and running! If you’ve already downloaded the game, you can now play it! We will update this article with info about the game’s in-game purchases later today.
Sonic Forces’ mobile version has been all about brand synergy with the Sonic movie these last few months, and this latest event is no exception. “The Protector’s Return” event sees movie Sonic’s surrogate mom, Longclaw, debut in the game as a playable character. She will only be available for a limited time, and will come with a new item called “cyclone charge,” which can slow down other characters.
Strictly Necessary Cookies
Strictly Necessary Cookie should be enabled at all times so that we can save your preferences for cookie settings.
If you disable this cookie, we will not be able to save your preferences. This means that every time you visit this website you will need to enable or disable cookies again.
3rd Party Cookies
This website uses Google Analytics to collect anonymous information such as the number of visitors to the site, and the most popular pages.
Keeping this cookie enabled helps us to improve our website.
Please enable Strictly Necessary Cookies first so that we can save your preferences!