UK Xbox 360 specialist magazine Xbox World 360 recently sent out e-mails to a variety of game developers to find out the secrets of the industry for a feature in their magazine, which has now been made available online on partner site CVG. One of the developers queried was Sonic Team head Takashi Iizuka, who was asked “What’s the secret to making 2D work?”, to which he replied with the below statement.
I think there are various kinds of 2D platformer and each one of them focuses on different game elements. In the case of Sonic games, I put a premium on the game tempo of the stage.
A game cannot be constructed with only speed elements and a game with only jump actions is not a Sonic. Though jump actions bring a feeling of tension and cause a lot of stress, it’s an element giving the player a great sense of achievement when completed.
In addition to that, maximizing the feeling of achievement and exhilaration in a game whilst still providing the speed is the basic concept – and also real pleasure – of Sonic games.
Takashi Iizuka has gotten a lot of flack from the fanbase for Sonic the Hedgehog 4: Episode 1 due to physics being very different to the classic Mega Drive titles among other reasons, and those fans who didn’t enjoy Episode 1 are hopeful things will change in Episode 2. While this statement doesn’t mention physics, does it give you some hope for Episode 2 and any other future 2D Sonic games? Share your thoughts in the comments.