A Japanese interview with the producer for Mario & Sonic at the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 from E3 by Dengeki has been translated, and it reveals some details about the upcoming title, from motion controls to characters and even a story mode!
Whew! The news just keeps coming in. In case you somehow missed it, Sonic Boom was revealed a few days ago, a brand new extension of the Sonic franchise aimed at western audiences which includes a new game, television show and merchandise. A new interview with Bob Rafei (Big Red Button CEO) and Stephen Frost (SoA Producer) has revealed some further details into both the game and show, which Timmi T over on Sonic Retro has handily put into a brief summary for us all. I’ve bolded some more noteworthy points:
- Game started development in 2011, when SEGA approached Big Red Button.
- Big Red Button consists of people from Naughty Dog, High Impact Games (former Insomniac people who made the Ratchet games for PSP) and Heavy Iron Studios (known for the good Spongebob platformers and some licensed stuff)
- Worked together with Crytek to make Cryengine 3 display the game on the Wii U gamepad while also showing it on the TV in co-op.
- Game is mostly two-player co-op, with sometimes four players.
- If you play in single player you can switch between the characters (seemingly like in the LEGO games)
- Development was started before the Nintendo exclusivity deal. They say it made sense for it to eventually be on Nintendo platforms anyway (in other words, it started as a multiplatform game)
- Evan Baily is the showrunner for the TV show.
- They started working on it with a somber attitude, as broader media initiatives have a poor reputation. But as they worked together with Evan they were pleased to see that he’s a gamer as well. After they got together they had no more concerns.
- Before really working on the games they established base rules like what the world is, what the characters are going to be like etc.
- Big Red Button, SEGA and OuiDO (the animation studio producing Sonic Boom) shared ideas of what to add to both the game and cartoon.
- Stephen Frost (the producer of Sonic Boom) thinks they’re building a bigger Sonic world than they usually do.
- Stephen hopes to make more games set in the Boom world.
- Sonic Boom won’t replace the already existent Sonic, they see it more as a branch of the franchise.
- They hope to draw in new users while also trying to do something new for the Sonic franchise.
- They went through a lot of potential new designs for Sonic before eventually deciding on Scarf Sonic.
So it seems that Sonic Boom has been in the pipeline far even before the footage shown in the CryEngine 3 showcase – that’s a lot of development time. What’s more is the gameplay details. Are we looking at a Sonic Heroes hybrid type of game? The idea of having multiple characters on screen you can swap between certainly supports that idea, though we won’t know for certain until we get some clear footage of the game in motion.
And that’s it! If you missed anything in this hectic week, don’t worry, we have a Sum-Up Sunday article coming with all the details you might have missed. Until then, you can check out the full interview below. Special thanks again to TimmiT of Retro for the great summary.
The designs for Sonic Boom have emerged from the Year of Sonic event being held in New York. Sonic has blue arms, a scarf, sports tape all over his arms and legs and Knuckles is a giant.
Other details to emerge from this event are as follows
So there’s going to be a new console and mobile game, toys based off the show made by Tomy and they will look like that. Although to be fair it could have been a lot worse.
Now we don’t know yet if this is the new direction for the series or if this will just be limited to Boom’s universe and the one we know and love will still continue as normal.
We’ll keep you updated with more information when we get it.
Edit: personally. I kinda like the new designs.
Sega have announced a new deal with toy manufacturer Sambro International. The deal allows Sambro to produce a series of new Sonic board games, travel games and jigsaw puzzles as well as ‘action games.’
What do they define as ‘action games’ you might ask? Well according to the press release, this includes Pinball, Four in a Row (Connect 4), Fire Balls, Air Hockey, Rapid Fire and Magnetic Scribblers.
Can’t get enough of the awesome dialogue in Sonic Colours? Well, our friends over at Sonic Retro have been busy digging, and Retro Tech Member Technokami has managed extract some unused one-liners from Sonic and Doctor Eggman that never managed to make it into the game itself. Admittedly some of these lines are pretty dire, but are most definitely in the vein of most cheesey Sonic vox pops.
As Sonic (apparently) would say…“You can’t be quality with quantity!”.
Sonic Team bossman Takashi Iizuka is a lovable chap in person, but gosh does he say the darndest things. He’s like an adorable grandpa that sometimes spouts politically incorrect slurs that would only be acceptable in the 1970s.
Recently, he demonstrated this again in an interview with Nintendo Power, where he was asked to elaborate on the rather wonky physics of Sonic the Hedgehog 4: Episode 1. Take it away, Papa Iizuka:
NP: We enjoyed [Sonic the Hedgehog 4: Episode 1], but the physics felt a bit off compared to the Genesis games. Is that something you’ll look to tweak in future episodes?
TI: In this title, we have not done a straight port of the gameplay [from the Genesis games], but rather updated it with actions which could not be done in the previous titles, like ceiling-running. These changes probably made for a different feel to the longtime Sonic fans. We’re happy for feedback like this, and we’ll make sure we can improve the quality even further in upcoming titles.
Make of that what you will – all I’ll say is “Keep on shinin’, Iizuka. Keep on shinin’.”
Ok, ok, bad puns aside – if you want to hear a small clip of Crush 40‘s version of “Free”, the title track to Sonic Free Riders, pop over and see our friends at JunSenoue.com and have a little goosey. Its very good.
The track will be available on the Sonic Free Riders Album, “Break Free”, due for release on the 8th of December 2010, for the handsome sum of ¥1800.
Chart Track has released the UK chart results for last week and with a full week of sales behind them compared to last week, we can now get a good idea of the UK’s response to Sonic Colours and Sonic Free Riders. In the all formats top 40 chart, both versions of Sonic Colours have together risen from 36th to 18th position, while Sonic Free Riders has dropped out of the chart completely after ranking 38th last week with only 4 days of sales behind it.
In the individual formats top 40 chart Sonic Colours placed at the lower 29th position on Wii and 35th on DS. In the top 40 Wii only chart Sonic Colours rose from 11th place to 7th, 2 places higher than popular shooter Call of Duty: Black Ops and 1 rank lower than old rival Mario’s universally acclaimed title Super Mario Galaxy 2. As for the top 40 DS only chart, Sonic Colours climbed from 12th position to 4th, being beaten out of the top 3 by Art Academy in 3rd, New Super Mario Bros. in 2nd and popular puzzler Professor Layton and the Lost Future in 1st.
Sonic Classic Collection has jumped 4 places from 20th position to 16th, proving Sonic’s Mega Drive titles still have sales power today. Finally, Sonic Free Riders has descended in the top 40 Xbox 360 only chart from 16th place to 19th. Other Kinect launch titles in the chart have also dropped positions compared to last week, but still beat out SEGA’s mascot racer.
So, with a full week of sales behind the game, Sonic Colours has shown some positive momentum after last weeks disappointing first 2 days, while Sonic Free Riders hasn’t seen the same benefit of more sales time. Will both games improve from here? Check back next week. Meanwhile, share your thoughts in the comments.
UPDATE: Zavvi has raised the Wii version back up to £29.95. DS version remains at £17.95, but is still temporarily out of stock right now. /UPDATE END
UK online retailer Zavvi.com has heavily discounted both versions of Sonic Colours after only just over a week of being on sale. Both editions are now being sold for just £17.95, though the DS version is currently out of stock (no doubt due to this offer), but the Wii version is still available as of the time of this article, so grab it while its there.
In other news, another UK retailer Argos, who you may recall has been causing fans some bother since Sonic Colours‘ release day regarding an action figure pre-order gift, has answered some complaints about the gift missing from their orders. Some of our readers and members of our forum called Argos every day to try to get the issue resolved and now Argos is finally coming through by offering customers affected by this problem their long-awaited figure or a £15 gift voucher (the price Argos charges for the figure when sold separately).
SSMB member jennytablina said an Argos representative she spoke to on the 16th November told her the whole situation was because of a system error:
I called Argos today and asked about this. The attendant said the call center got an internal email about this today and checked, it said Argos had a system error and EVERYONE who preordered Colours did not get a figure (computers eh?). They apparently were trying to reach customers yesterday via email and phone. Though I had no call or email in my inbox.
The official word seems to be that everyone WILL get their figure delivered separate in the post in the next few days, currently waiting on the assistant to call back with details about my own delivery (she was having trouble getting the entertainment side to respond)
jennytablina got a call back the next day and was offered the figure or the £15 gift voucher and opted for the voucher:
Argos called me, and they offered the figure but all the local stores are out of stock. I took the £15 gift voucher instead, because I simply don’t believe the figure is worth the price Argos is trying to shell it for (and mentally it makes Colours £16 in my head, automatically making it an absolute steal instead of a total rip off)
It’s a bit of a shame because I would kind of liked to have had the figure but eh, maybe it’ll be on ebay sometime.
Tomnomnom0607 at the SSMB said:
Well I just got a call from Argos. The person said that they can either send me the figure itself, or £15 worth of Argos vouchers. I took the figure of course! They said I should get it in 5-7 working days.
Looks like they have indeed sorted it out. Hopefully they’ll get in contact with the rest of you shortly!
TSS reader BlastedPinata said:
Okay this has been resolved for me, the woman on the phone placed a reservation for the £15 Sonic figure for me and has paid it for me via Argos. I just need to go down to my local store and pick it up using my reservation number. What a hassle!
SSMB member Gnasher (who provided the photos of the figure) said in a post at the forum:
Well it took 3 nights, 3 argos customer service advisors and 3 phone calls… but finally I have my figure.
I got a redemption code to my email and phone. Took it into my store and got the figure.
I don’t think it’s worth 15p let alone £15 (if you buy it separately), it should be free and nothing more! It’s such a poor figure that even the Argos staff in the shop wanted to check they’d gotten the right one.. to quote one of their staff “It looks like it should come free in Corn Flakes…”
My advice… try to get a redemption code from their call centre and go pick one up in the store. I suppose it’s good if you wish to keep it in the packaging, but certainly DO NOT BUY it separately, it’s not worth it at all!
Yes this is the £15 price, it doesn’t come in a classic Jazzwares style box, it is just a ‘bagged’ figure, regardless as to if you buy colours or not.
In that last sentence, Gnasher is referring to SSMB member Mahzes’ £15 purchase of the figure separately on Sonic Colours‘ launch day, which he said came in a plastic bag and not the usual packaging that retail Sonic figures are sealed in.
I bought the figure in-store at Argos for £15.
It doesn’t even come in a proper package, just in a clear plastic bag with a folded card strip stapled through the top. As such, the figure was (quite understandably) all mashed up, twisted and bent in the bag.
When I opened it, noticed a tiny crack on the right knee-joint (from being mangled in the bag). Took it back, got a replacement, which looked fine. A bit later, on closer inspection, there are two cracks on his right arm joints. *facepalm*
Still, they’re not ‘arm going to fall off’, so I’m just sticking with it. Dunno about anyone else (or if anyone else here has even got it yet), but the joints don’t seem to allow for much movement on the figure. The arms are jointed horribly, too.
And he has no mouth. His nose also bends upward at a pretty steep angle. D:
Overall, the figure is just ‘okay’, but definitely not worth £15. The ‘packaging’ (if it can even be called that) is just ridiculous.
If you take a look at the above picture of the figure, you’ll spot the words “Not to be sold separately” on the cardboard packaging, something we know Argos is definitely doing at £15 per figure. Clearly the figures were intended to be a pre-order gift, which Argos initially advertised them as, but come release the retailer hadn’t given them away and continued not to until nearly a week later after many pre-order customers complained, and even now they’re still selling them.
Is SEGA even seeing any profits back from the sales of this merchandise we assume the publisher gave to Argos for free? We’ll probably never know, but we do know that this has been quite the mess for Argos and their customers. At least now the problem has been solved and Sonic fans should be getting their figure or voucher shortly.
If you pre-ordered with Argos and haven’t received a call/e-mail from them, we suggest you contact the retailer and they should hopefully offer you the figure or gift voucher they’ve offered everyone in this article, but if you go for the figure, be sure to take print-outs of your order/receipt, e-mails to and from Argos about the issue and anything else of relevance, in case you experience the below situation that SSMB member Gnasher has reported in the forum.
On friday I was told by the person who picked up the figure (as I couldn’t get to the store on time) what the staff tried to do. Despite having a redemption code in the form of a mobile phone text, and as an email print out. Argos staff still wanted the person to pay for the figure!
Yeah, the code wasn’t a ‘free code’ it was a ‘on hold’ code. Meaning had I not made copies or my order in the form of print screens, or copied that screen shot you took of the listing, chances are I wouldn’t have gotten this figure as Argos did NOT want to give it out for free regardless of what my code said.
So if you get a redemption code, take all prints and evidence that the figure it should be free with you.
The game may not be out for another few weeks, but it appears that Sonic Colours is already performing very well in the sales department, because Toys R Us Canada’s website is now out of stock of the DS version of the game. We checked for the Wii edition, but their website isn’t listing it at the time of this article’s publication. The fact that the game is selling out is good news for SEGA’s sales, but for some fans it may mean having to get those pre-orders in and buy early if they’re looking to nab a copy before Christmas.
Will this sales performance continue with other retailers and other countries? We’ll keep an eye open and report back. Meanwhile, share your thoughts in the comments.
Source: Toys R Us Canada’s website
DualShockers has posted up a video interview with SEGA’s Dan Gallardo where they discuss the publishers first Xbox 360 Kinect title Sonic Free Riders. Nothing is revealed that we didn’t already know, but we do get some assurance that SEGA has treated this game as a full Xbox 360 title and not a quickly put together mini game title. Gallard explains, “It will be online, you’ll get the unlockables, you’ll get the characters, you’ll get the variety of environments, you’ll get everything you expect with a 360 title, all in one.” With all of the game modes, tracks, characters and features shown in the final build of the game on Gamespot’s On The Spot show, it’s no surprise that some hard work has been put into this title.
Apart from the interview, you get to see plenty of new gameplay footage of the Western themed Rocky Ridge track from the Tokyo Game Show demo of the game, complete with huge jumps and minecart steering action.
Thanks to Woun at the SSMB for the YouTube conversion!
Ryan Drummond, voice actor for Sonic the Hedgehog in the SONICTEAM games for the last five years, has revealed to the Sonic community about his replacement by Jason Griffith from the ‘SONIC X’ cast.
In an email he has sent to fans ahead of his monthly newsletter on RyanDrummond.com, Drummond has explained how SEGA made a decision to replace the entire Game Voiceover Cast of the Sonic games with the Voiceover Cast from the US Dub ‘SONIC X’ cartoon, without letting him know about it. In a shock, if perhaps inevitable direction by the ‘House of Sonic’, the company felt that the move would maintain a level of continuity between the games and other products, such as the cartoon series. Continue reading Sonic Voiceover Cast Replaced