Sonic and Caliburn join the hunt in Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate

gaming-sonic-the-hedgehog-monster-hunter-02There’s no denying that Capcom’s Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate has taken the world by storm on 3DS. Placing you in the shoes of a brave hunter, you seek out huge creatures and pit yourself against them, learning their ways and finding the best method to slay each beast. With critical acclaim and commercial success behind it, what more could this game possibly need? Well, Sonic the Hedgehog, of course!

[youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9fLGd30tAeE[/youtube]

Released today as free downloadable content, you can now access an additional mission called “Super Sonic Seregios” – emerge victorious and you will be able to craft special Sonic themed gear for your Palicoes, including Caliburn from Sonic and the Black Knight.

afddc4c77505894a7712f69bd2ec31f7

There’s plenty of other crossovers in Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate – The Legend of Zelda and Super Mario, to name but a couple – but this is definitely one of the coolest looking ones so far. With this and the Sonic Amiibo suit coming to Mario Kart 8, April is set to be filled with bonus Sonic content for Nintendo games!

If you own Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate, will you be taking on the DLC and equipping your Palicoes with Sonic and Caliburn? What other Sonic crossovers would you like to see? Let us know in the comments!

 

TSS Competition: Sales Pitch Winners!

Last week we posed to you the challenge of inventing something cool and original in the way of a new Sonic toy. Well, you all managed to decimate the comments box which ended up including over 150 ideas…and it has as always been a real pain choosing winners! There are far too many amazing to mention here, so before we announce the winners, here are a few:

HONOURABLE MENTIONS:

SKrown:
Okay, what the Sonic merchandise series never get to have are collectors quality figures. With the sales of the first 4 figures by F4F, it is clearly shown that Sonic figure set with details that matches anime figures will sell well. The debut idea here is a “Sonic Adventure: DX Figure” set, recreating the Vs. Final Chaos scenery with a darker tone (ignoring the fact that Super Sonic did it all alone):
Link to Image
The figures will be PVC-made with the effects sculpted with clear materials and is around 210 mm, perfect for shelf stands! We must take on any price at all as this will be collector’s item. However, it is assured that even if one is only going to get one out of the set, each is as good as another as a stand-alone. This will be another feature of the series. [Wow! They look like The Force Unleashed Figures! Cool! – T]

Cerium:
Link to Image

So here are my Sonic The Hedgehog Friends & Foes statue line!
Each figure is made from high quality resin material (same as the great 15th anniversary Sonic statue)  and placed on a sturdy wooden base and a little plaque showing where Sonic first met that friend/foe.  As you can see, some figures are held up using small, transparent plastic poles to make it seem like they are in mid-air. This is just the first line of statues. The 2nd line could include more recent characters like Big, Cream & Silver for the friends and Chaos, Shadow & Mephiles The Dark for the foes. [A must for all the high-end collectors! – T]

Sonicmark:
Knuckles with a smashable master emerald? :B [I hope each bit has a built in homing device so you can find them again! – T]

Brocky_Christ:
Four Words.
BIG.THE.CAT.DISPENSER. Its a toy big that cat that can fire out lollies like pez and smarties and whatnot XD [Froggy Pez! – T]

Sonictoast:
For the 3.75 inch line there should be a bonus figure that you get with every set of five. Similar to the Sonic x Mega bot series or the Marvel Legends and Futurama figures. Each toy comes with a limb of a large character, then when you have collected all five, you can piece together the body of an additional character. Take a look, i made visuals: [Loving the SU set…but I need more swatbots! – T]
Shadow the Hedgehog Set
SatBK Set
Sonic Underground Set

RUNNERS UP:

(and the receipients of a Jazwares SatBK Sonic Action Figure!):

Warrior-STH:
A Tornado-2 from Sonic Adventure. Basically it’ll have the ability to transform from normal bi-plane to the super jet plane! (Kinda like a Transformer, hope its not ripping it in anyway…). Plus it can include a miniuature Tails figure for the cockpit and a Sonic figure to stand on the wings! It should be small in size and easy to transform, good for kids ages 6 and up. [I want one now! – T]

DWalrus:
This had better not have been said already…
*ahem* -steps up to front- BEHOLD!!!
The build-your-own Egg-machine!! Start with the basic Eggmobile (featuring of course, the fully articulated doctor with alternate heads of increasing degrees of rage) and use the peices provided to constuct your favourate bosses or your own attempt at hedge-cide! buy booster packs as well as new mobiles with different versions of his moustatchedness for endless possibilities(to kill sonic)!! made to scale with our current lines, naturally! (c) yours truly. How DO YOU like it?!  [A lot! I know where my pocket money would go!  – T]

COMPETITION WINNER:

(And the winner of the Sonic, Tails & SatBK Figure set!)

Stasis!


First, we were very impressed by the filly illustrated technical design for the Sonic Adventure 2 playset  – we could probably build one from these schematics!

Artistic Impression of Set
Schematics and working sounds and lights
Super Sonic figure design

Secondly, we then laughed our arses off at the second idea:

A Dr RRRRRRRRobotnik room guard. Stops people from rooting through your belongings. Set it up before you leave the room, and when someone enters they are caught “snooPING AS usual, I seeeee!”. Thanks to the used phrase, it also insults them.

Enough to scare off any burglar or badnik I think! Congratulations to all the winners, please as usual send your postal info to tbird [at] sonicstadium [dot] org as per usual!

If you didn’t win anything this time around, do not fear!!! We have YET ANOTHER COMPETITION beginning in May…all I can say is you’re going to be at an advantage if you’re good at putting names to faces!

#24 Black Knight Commentary Finale

It’s that time again! Lets slash some things to death for the last time in ‘Ye Old England!

An Interesting Story.

We sometimes wonder why HellFire comms did this exclusive playthrough for The Sonic Show….. then we remember and shut up. (that wasn’t as interesting a story as I originally planned).

Sonic and the Erazor Djinn Knight

Sonic and the Its Like Sex In A Toy Its Amazing Knight is a title within the Sonic the Hedgehog series, released exclusively on Wii as the second entry in the Sonic Storybook series, following on from Sonic and the Secret Rings. The game is directed by Tetsu Katano, who was the lead programmer of the Sonic Adventure titles and Sonic Heroes. Set in the world of King Arthur, the game combines Sonic’s trademark speed with a new swordfighting system, making use of the Wii Remote’s motion-sensing functionality….. deja vu?

Who are Hellfire Commentaries?

They are people

To watch one of their other entertaining videos, please head over to

http://www.youtube.com/user/HellfireCommsIt’s that time again! Lets slash some things to death in ‘Ye Old England!

#18 Black Knight Commentary Part3

We weren’t dead… we were just having a nap.What to say that hasn’t been said before. HellFire rock. Simple as really. I mean is there anyone else on the planet who could play through a whole game without boring you to tears? I think not. Don’t forget to check out their huge selection of commentaries on their youtube channel here.

And The Rest: Japan’s SatBK Site Showcases “Runner Up” Art

art-showcase

Way back in the Summer last year, not too long after a certain Summer of Sonic, SEGA announced the SatBK art competition in which sixty lucky artists (from SEGA’s American, European and Japanese regions) would have their work immortalised in Sonic and the Black Knight the following spring. The calibre of art produced was staggering, and one can only imagine how much of a difficult choice it was for the judges to select pieces to win the contest.

Continue reading And The Rest: Japan’s SatBK Site Showcases “Runner Up” Art

#15 Mr Bentley Covers Seven Rings In Hand!

. ‘Nuff said really?!?! XDTeh Bentley just can’t keep away from Sonic can he? The sexy ginger sod. This is a cover he did of Seven Rings In Hand for Sonic and the Black Knight.

Don’t forget you can still pick up his album from almost ALL japanese import stores (yesasia etc). Meanwhile this track comes from the OST to Black Knight, which can be downloaded for free (and you won’t get in trouble for it) from here!

#13 Black Knight Commentary Part2

It’s that time again! Lets slash some things to death in ‘Ye Old England!

An Interesting Story.

We sometimes wonder why HellFire comms did this exclusive playthrough for The Sonic Show….. then we remember and shut up. (that wasn’t as interesting a story as I originally planned).

Sonic and the Cake Is A Lie Knight

Sonic and the Strawberry Cheese Cake Knight is a title within the Sonic the Hedgehog series, released exclusively on Wii as the second entry in the Sonic Storybook series, following on from Sonic and the Secret Rings. The game is directed by Tetsu Katano, who was the lead programmer of the Sonic Adventure titles and Sonic Heroes. Set in the world of King Arthur, the game combines Sonic’s trademark speed with a new swordfighting system, making use of the Wii Remote’s motion-sensing functionality….. deja vu?

Who are Hellfire Commentaries?

They are people

To watch one of their other entertaining videos, please head over to

http://www.youtube.com/user/HellfireComms

#6 Black Knight Commentary Part1

What’s going on???

Things change a little bit for episode six of The Sonic Show as we take you through a commentary of Sonic and The Gay Knight. NTom64 and Fastest Thing Alive of ‘Hellfire Comms’ fame are your tour guides for part one of this series of half hour playthroughs exclusive to the sonic show.

Sonic and the Ulala Knight

Sonic and the Barrel Roll Knight is a title within the Sonic the Hedgehog series, released exclusively on Wii as the second entry in the Sonic Storybook series, following on from Sonic and the Secret Rings. The game is directed by Tetsu Katano, who was the lead programmer of the Sonic Adventure titles and Sonic Heroes. Set in the world of King Arthur, the game combines Sonic’s trademark speed with a new swordfighting system, making use of the Wii Remote’s motion-sensing functionality.

Who are Hellfire Commentaries?

HellfireComms are a hugely popular team found on youtube who cover a wide range of video game featurettes. They are most well known for their commentaries of videogames, especially Sonic ones as this makes up the largest amount of their portfolio. HellfireComms is made of a large team but the most notable two are NTom64 and Fastest Thing Alive. With subscribers and 1,634,414 channel views in less than a year, it is fair to say that this team are making a big impact on the Sonic community.

To watch one of their other entertaining videos, please head over to

http://www.youtube.com/user/HellfireComms

Black Knight’s “Casual Direction:” Parte Deux

Set “sarcasm” and “smart-ass” levels to 11.  OK, ready…

I had an experiment last week.  One that I said to take with as many grains of salt as you would like:

You can take as many grains of salt from this experiment as you would like to (it is just three kids after all), but, personally, Sonic Team’s failure to hit their target audience speaks volumes on the state of the series.

No foolin’.  If you were level-headed enough to read the entire article, you got to read the above statement and made a level-headed assessment, either in agreement with the article or not.  I assume that the unnecessarily disgruntled, drama-loving lunkheads who frequent the Sega of America boards and TSSZ comment boxes were too flustered to keep reading by the second or third paragraph of the article and went right to peeing their footy pajamas and raging about “experimenting on more kids.”  Well, an “experiment” consists of testing a small group to draw a conclusion on the whole.  Looking in a second grade science textbook can tell you that much.  I guess the crowd that can’t deal with an opinion radically different from theirs was too busy looking at Cream & Marine hentai that they slid into their books while the teacher was going over that chapter.

It’s okay, lunkheads, because my new buddy, Core, has hooked me up with a similar experiment conducted by a French-language magazine.  I have no idea which magazine, but Core and I can assure you that it’s real.  In the article, they ask three kids about Black Knight.  They even give the game a score out of twenty, so you can justify your purchase with a number!  Wow!  A number and an opinion that agrees with the lunkheads?  Hot damn!

satbk_scan

So, the three kids that I tested all disliked the game and these French children liked the game.  Combine the two experiments and the game gets a 3/6, or a 50%.  Fifty percent, hmm… that number looks familiar.  Or, at least, is rather close to a certain Metacritic rating.

This new article leads me to draw a new conclusion when it comes to the the game’s reception to not just its target audience, but even the gaming public as a whole:

Sonic & the Black Knight: Mixed reaction.  Mediocre.  End of story.  If you like it, great.  If you don’t like it, great.

Nobody is stopping you from doing either.

A big thank you to Core for providing TSS with this article and for being cool about presenting an opposing opinion.  Be more like Core.

Reflecting on Black Knight’s “Casual” Direction

Back in February, I posted a story from CasualGaming.biz regarding the intended audience of Sonic & the Black Knight.  Once I read it, I found some solace in that I shouldn’t give a care about Sonic idiotically waving a sword at 300 MPH.  Tetsu Katano, the director of the Japan division of Sonic Team, went on the record to tell us older guys to look down on Black Knight as child’s play.

“Sonic and the Black Knight is aimed at a younger, more casual audience. We’ve changed a lot of things, essentially. It’s thinking as children; approaching things from their point of view, thinking what they want to see.”

So be it, Tetsu.  However, I still have to play it to keep myself informed.  It’s part of my job here at TSS, because nobody wants to read articles by someone who is completely clueless.  When I played the game, I went in with lower expectations than Sonic Unleashed.  Considering how much I loathed the werehog, Black Knight was as low as I can get.  My rental time with the game can be summed up in Svend’s review, or any review that you can find on the internet in the 60s score range and below.

After my experience, I thought of this article by CasualGaming.  How do kids react to this game?  It was a thought that lingered in my mind until I finally put it to the test.  I have spent the last week in Los Angeles, making connections, scouting apartments, soaking up sun, and visiting friends.  I went to one of my old mentor’s houses in Burbank.  He has a wife, three kids, and, most importantly, a Wii.  On a slow day, I rented Black Knight again and asked the kids to play it.

The three boys have never played a Sonic game before, so I thought that this little experiment was an excellent opportunity to test Katano’s “kid-oriented” game and his other goal of using this game as a way to introduce people to Sonic:

“Sonic is kind of a cheeky, edgy character, and so we like seeing Sonic challenge new things all the time. The Wii is a big part of it, because it appeals to a wider range of people who maybe have not played a Sonic game before.”

The kids were hooked on the presentation, like most people, but could not stand to play the rest of the game.  They complained that the game was “too difficult” and that their wrists were getting worn out.  From my observations, the difficulty stemmed from the poor design choices in gameplay that a majority of the reviewers have been harping on.  The kids refused to play the rest of the game and Katano’s primary audience of new, young Sonic players was violated.

You can take as many grains of salt from this experiment as you would like to (it is just three kids after all), but, personally, Sonic Team’s failure to hit their target audience speaks volumes on the state of the series.

#3 ‘With Me’ MP3, from Sonic & The Black Knight

Personally, “Knight Of The Wind” is s**t. However this track “With Me” is really good! The downlad link is just above! It’s from the final boss in the game. I don’t think it’s really a spoiler. I mean it doesnt explain ANY plot details… or anything for that matter. It just sounds cool!

GameTrailers Takes On Black Knight

Once again, the embedding here at TSS is being an ass, so click here to go directly to GameTrailers.

Like we’ve stated many times, we don’t like to talk about reviews.  However, I have the utmost respect for GameTrailers and their reviews.  I, personally, find them interesting, in-depth and having visual aid for any complaints that they air during the review is always nice.  It’s hard to argue with GTs gripes with Sonic & the Black Knight, so here it is at TSS for your viewing pleasure.

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m going back to my L.A. spring break adventure.

Editorial: Paging True Sonic Fans

tsfWhy do people in the Sonic community take such offense to low review scores?  Anything 69% and lower is like a kick to the nuts to some.  I’ve seen people react like the reviewer had just murdered their parents.  While video games are an expensive endeavor, cashing in at $50 or $60, that doesn’t seem to be the point of contention with the “true Sonic fan,” which, by the way, is a derogatory term to the lot of us here.  The “TSFs” are more concerned with the reputation of their furry, blue idol than whether or not it’s worth a purchase, rental, or pass.  They probably have already bought the game and have beaten it three times over before the review is out, so they could care less for a recommendation.

It begs the question: Why do the TSFs care so dearly about other people’s opinions, especially the dissenting ones?

The TSFs have played the game and absolutely love it, so what does it matter to them that everybody else hates it?  If I could capture one of these creatures, put on a lab coat and study its ticks, then I would know the answer.  Sadly, it remains a mystery why these embarassments of Sonic fandom do what they do.  We can only assess from the asinine things that they post in forums and comment boxes.

A recent trend in the community is this obsession with whether or not a reviewer finished the game or not.  While I agree that a reviewer should play the game thoroughly, the need to 100% complete a game is asking too much.  How many review sites finished Grand Theft Auto IV before reviewing it?  I doubt that any of them did.  Most times, if you’ve seen first half of a game, the second half is bound to be similar.  Does IGN’s Matt Casamassina have to play the final moments of Black Knight?  Would the game’s true ending redeem all of the game’s shortcomings?  I highly doubt it.

A much more prominent argument of the TSF is the necessity to call people out on their preference to the classic titles, going as far as stating that the Genesis Sonic titles “suck.”  It’s always amusing to read that comment, as it lacks any context whatsoever.  Without Sonic’s successful Genesis days, which were popular for their innovations to platform gaming and contrasting attitude to Mario, the new-generation Sonic wouldn’t exist.  By referring to those games as “absolute crap,” one basically erases Sonic’s current lineage of games.  Sonic would be lost in the 16-bit generation, like Bubsy, Sparkster, and other attitudinal, platforming mascots.

What’s funny about the TSF’s cries for respect to the new-generation is that us editorial folk have to love every Sonic game.  When the TSFs preach that to us and follow up with “the Genesis games suck,” they’re contradicting themselves.

The “classic backlash” from the TSFs could also be attributed to the perspective of the authors of the Sonic-related articles and reviews.  The people who are articulate enough to write for these “important” websites are in their late teens and beyond.  Most of us are in our twenties.  As a result, we grew up with this character.  It’s something that has to be understood by the chronic complainers.  When they’ve reached a point in their life when they’re old enough to have a firm grasp on their respective languages, they can write articles about how Sonic Unleashed was a triumph of this generation for TSS, IGN, or some other video game website.  Secondly, the “too old for Sonic” argument doesn’t really work.  The charm of the character is supposed to appeal to everyone, regardless if you’re 12 or 40 or whether or not the game is “designed for kids.”

Everybody’s entitled to their own opinion.  If IGN does not like the game, that’s their prerogative.  If you like the game, then that’s your prerogative.  Telling a site how to do its business is an exercise in futility.

Not everybody is going to be happy with Sonic all the time.  One cannot coarse a fanbase so large to think uniformily.  So, if you like Black Knight, then good for you.  Don’t go looking to pick fights with the opposite viewpoint, because nobody wants to see that.

Better yet, nobody cares.

Brad wrote this review not in defense for IGN or review sites, but for the sake of peace and sanity.  Picture credit goes to “Sonic-Fan-Rater” at DeviantArt.

New GT Trailer: Sonic & Shadow Duel Once More

Maaaaan, back when Sonic Adventure 2 was the shiznit, Sonic and Shadow were all like “faker” and “NO U” in some jungle.  The dialogue was so bad, that it was awesome.  Then, Sonic and Shadow went at it as the island that they were on exploded.

If you have ever thought to yourself that the fight would have been better with swords, your wet dream has come true.  GameTrailers’ new SatBK trailer has some footage of the duel between Sonic and Shadow, amongst other things.  The trailer showcases more environments, gameplay, action sequences, and the storybook cutscenes (which are less low-budget than Secret Rings, by the way).  You also get to see more of these graphics that all of these news folk are raving about.

Scavenger Hunt!: Find Classic Games and “Starfish Head”

On the U.S. Sonic and the Black Knight website, you can engage in some fun and find surprises while you wait for Sonic’s next non-canon trip to Arthurtown.

satbksite

The site is VERY flash heavy, so make sure that you have the latest updates.

Anyway, there are 4 references to classic SEGA games on the Black Knight site and I’ve given away two in Wonderboy and Alex Kidd.  Can you find the other two references?  First one to find them gets a shiny, red ball.

Secondly, Silver, who shall always be referred to as “Starfish Head,” is confirmed for this game through the site’s “papercrafts” section.  You can print out paper versions of Sonic & Co.’s armor.  Starfish Head has some slick gear:

If you ever wanted for someone to question your sexuality, then print this out, fold it up, and wear it to school.  Then, at dinner, your dad will regret not making you play contact sports and/or not beating you enough.  Good times.

A Sampling of SatBK Previews From Across the Web

You’ve read TSS’ Comic Con impressions and you’ve read some semblance of an article on IGN AU yesterday.  Now, check out some previews that I have picked out for one reason or another.

Kotaku

From the title and opening paragraph of this incredibly brief preview, it didn’t look like Jim Reilly was too excited about another Sonic game, especially one with a sword.  Despite first impressions, he turns around in the end by saying that he would have “obviously loved to play [the game] more.”  He said that the game is done and probably won’t undergo any more changes.  He is concerned about stage variety (which was a problem in games like Super Mario Sunshine – what with all the tropical shit) and the game’s difficulty, as it was too easy.  He did play the first level, though, so take that comment however you want to.  Reilly notes that the sense of speed and controls are the game’s high points.

If you’re still on the fence about Black Knight, especially if your age happens to be 20 and over, Reilly’s closing remark might be of help: “It’s clear from not only playing this, but talking to the Sega people as well that this game, and series, is for a different, younger generation of Sonic fans.”  Now, if you’ve come to the realization that this game is not designed for you, then you can stop complaining about it and ignore it.

Official Nintendo Magazine

ONM loves how we are finally given full control of Sonic on the Wii.  They relish in the lack of “race car” controls and welcome the simple concept of walking backwards.  ONM comments on how agile and stylish Sonic is while he swings his sword around.  Overall, they are pleased with this demo copy.

Still, even with the solid play-through that they received, they have the right to be pessimistic.  Sonic has had many proclaimed “returns to form” that have failed to deliver on more than one occasion.  I think that their advice is wise.  I’m not ensuing to that you be entirely downtrodden on this new game, but I wouldn’t run around saying that this game is going to kick the biggest of asses either.

IGN

Matt Casamassina feels better about Black Knight than most people would suspect (you know, since it’s IGN and “biased” or something).  He spent hours playing through the final build and gave the most detailed previews of them all, so I’d read it, despite some people’s outrageous and unnecessarily aggressive opinion of the site.

Matt comments that SatBK has more in common with Unleashed than it does its prequel, Sonic and the Secret Rings, thanks to the control scheme.  You can move Sonic freely with control stick movement, but when going backwards, the camera will not turn around.  The camera, when walking backwards, in SatSR was a huge problem, in my opinion, so it’s sad to not see that corrected.  Matt closes his section on the controls and gameplay by describing Black Knight as an “action racer.” He says that you’ll be using your sword a lot and he describes the control scheme in detail.  The impressive part is the B trigger, which iniates a bullet-time lock-on system.

Just like with my buddy, Keith, the sheer amount of remote waggle starts to wear on the player and Matt wishes that there was an alternative control scheme.  There are tons of enemies and they pop up incredibly frequently.  At least they look really pretty!

Oh, and a potential “sad face moment:” “we have yet to encounter any trademark loop-de-loops or corkscrews.”  🙁

Critic Consensus

Things are looking up for the upcoming adventure, but they are reserving their full judgment and excitement for when the game ships next month.

As somebody who thought Sonic and the Secret Rings was a decent outing, I like hearing about improvements made in Black Knight.  My only concern is whether or not the sword creates a whole new set of problems.  While ironing out the old, SEGA and Sonic Team might overlook a problem with the new.

Remember, kids, we’re talking about the previews here.

NYCC: SatBK Impressions From My Buddy, Keith

The hustle and bustle of the New York Comic Con is over and my buddy, Keith, finally sent me back his impressions of the game.  Nobody here at TSS is anywhere close to New York, so this reach-around method of getting some semblence of a “TSS Preview” will have to do.  Keith is an old friend of mine from grade school and we were teammates on many a hockey team.  He moved out to New York a few months ago after he graduated.  When it comes to his Sonic background, he hasn’t played a game in the series since the Dreamcast launched with Sonic Adventure 1.  I told him to rent Sonic & the Secret Rings before heading to the event and he thought that it was an “O.K.” game.

The second entry in the Storybook Series of games takes Sonic and plonks him into the land of dragons, knights, and the round table.  Keith’s first impression of the game is Sonic’s inclusion.  He couldn’t get his mind around why he was playing as Sonic and not as somebody else, as it’s not totally clear why.  He mentioned “Wonderboy,” since one of his favorite games is Wonderboy in Monster Land, as an alternative, but that’s another discussion.  One factor contributing to the game’s identity crisis is the yellow fairies.  Instead of rings, you collect yellow fairies, which then get converted into rings.  Why not just make them RINGS?

With Secret Rings fresh in Keith’s mind, he got a good comparison of how the two control.  Black Knight showcased the superior of the two control schemes, but it wasn’t without a few drawbacks.  Black Knight ditches the on-rails shenanigans of the previous title and opts for a Nunchuk+Wiimote system.  The “A” button acts as jump and the sword swinging is assigned to the waggle function, similar to Twilight Princess.  While it’s nice to get that big “A” button in on the action, Keith said that he got wanker’s cramp after his time at the Black Knight kiosk.  He noted, “Sonic slicing things at high speeds is cool, I guess, but it wears on you after a while.  Not mentally…physically.”

As I mentioned before, this game is no longer on-rails and you can move Sonic forward and backward as you please.  Despite having freedom of motion, the levels on display were rather linear and forced the player into playing how the designer intended you to.  Granted, he got to play one of the earlier levels, but I can wager that the rest of the game will follow suit.  To make up for level linearity, you can go back and complete different tasks within each level.  Let’s hope that the controls are good enough, so that “complete the level without taking a hit” isn’t next to impossible. In addition, SatBK has a deep, RPG system, similar to Secret Rings, and a multi-player battle mode.  Keith didn’t get to experience the latter.

Remember when I asked everybody to “place their bets?” Well, Sonic’s pals are back masquerading as other Arthurian characters.  Seriously, Knuckles better say something totally stupid.  I bet people who make “YouTube Poop” are wishing the same.  The difference this time is that you will be able to play as a few of those characters, but Keith said that the SEGA rep at the kiosk did not disclose who.

To end on the highest of notes, Keith was impressed by the graphics.  As a frustrated Wii owner, he really thought that Black Knight’s graphics were some of the best on the system.  There was no hiccup or lag during his experience to boot.

Well, that’s it for Keith.  Feel free to accuse him of not being a “true Sonic fan” or some other bullshit that you kids like to hurl at people who have a shred of dislike for anything Sonic related.  You guys always preach “open-mindedness,” but you totally contradict yourself when you shut others down.  If you post any of that crap in the comments box, I will delete it, because it’s not relevant to discussion.

This is your warning.  We are changing the air in the community and it starts now.  Everybody is welcome to their own opinion.