The creative team of Sonic the Hedgehog and Sonic Universe have been gracious enough to grant us a three part interview about their upcoming adaption of the Sonic Colors game. The adaption will be included as the backstory of Sonic the Hedgehog #219, which releases later this month. First up is the comic’s Editor, Paul Kaminski! Enjoy.
TSS: Hello Mr. Kaminski, thank you for taking the time to answer a few questions for us!
PK: My pleasure!
TSS: Did SEGA approach you with the idea of a Sonic Colors adaption story?
PK: After the game announcement back in May, we approached SEGA to see if they would be interested in working out a “Sonic Colors” story the same way we worked the past few game adaptation back-ups. SEGA seemed as enthused about the idea as we were and shortly after the exchange the details were ironed out and Ian was hard at work on draft one of the script!
TSS: As I understand it, the comics are meant to help advertise the games in the series. Why does SEGA ask you to only do adaptions for a fraction of the Sonic games released every year?
PK: Whether games get adaptations or not, at least in my experience, is less of a strict mandate and more a matter of practicality/availability. Our primary goal, besides trying to tell a good story, is to help promote the Sonic franchise as a whole, and I think we do a pretty good job of doing just that.
TSS: Do you have any idea what it is about the Sonic Colors game that separates it from the other games that haven’t been adapted, in particular Sonic 4 and the upcoming Sonic Free Riders?
PK: A comic adaptation of ‘Sonic Colors’ just makes sense. The game has fantastically stunning visuals, plus new characters like the Wisps that lend themselves to the types of storytelling we seek to achieve month after month with the Sonic comics. As for the other Sonic game releases this year, you may in fact see adaptations of these games, just not in the traditional “another time, another place” style.
TSS: SEGA has a reputation for keeping actual game material very close to its chest when it comes to game adaptions in the comics. What sorts of materials did SEGA lend you to allow you to do a proper adaption for this game?
PK: We had access to a pretty awesome collection of materials and imagery from the game to make the adaptation as faithful to the source material as possible.
TSS: How much lead time did you have with this adaption compared to typical Archie stories? Has it significantly altered plans for comic’s near future stories?
PK: The game adaptation stories require a little extra lead time because of the sensitive game materials and more meticulous rounds of approvals. The first conversation about doing the adaptation was back in May so that’ll give you a rough idea of how long the process took. As for altering plans, it hasn’t really. Ian wound up having to cut “Welcome back Chao” down to a one-parter but that was pretty much it. Other back-up stories got shifted around too to make sure the game story came out at around the same time as the game’s release.
TSS: What sorts of behind the scenes work have you done for this story in particular?
PK: Just a lot of coordinating with SEGA contacts, freelancers and media types to make the thing come together- which sounds boring but is in fact a lot of hard work! I LOVE to get creative with the books and contribute as much as I can, but this story is SEGA’s baby and we’re just here to help the team!
TSS: Are the wisps and other Sonic Colors characters off limits for the in canon stories in the same way Eggman Nega is, or will you be able to include these characters on your whim?
PK: Well I can’t speak for SEGA, but the only folks I’ve ever dealt with over there are wonderfully creative cats that are just as interested in telling a good story as we are. I would guess that if there was a story that demanded we include the Wisps down the line, they would be cool with it.
TSS: Have you had a chance to play the game at any point? Maybe at NYCC?
PK: What is this…”leaving the Archie booth” you speak of?
TSS: Thank you for your time Mr. Kaminski
Tomorrow, we’ll be interviewing Ian Flynn, and after that, artist Tracy Yardley, complete with exclusive concept art straight from the story!