The Spin: How SEGA is Ignoring the Middle Children of Sonic’s Legacy

2010 was the year Sonic the Hedgehog came back. Yes, we all heard the stories about how the franchise had declined not long after the jump to 3D, how gaming news outlets and critics even now would begin their pieces with some variation of “Sonic has had a rocky history,” and how every new Sonic game released around the “dark ages” period couldn’t shake off the dreaded “Sonic Cycle.” Continue reading The Spin: How SEGA is Ignoring the Middle Children of Sonic’s Legacy

3,653 Nights: 10 Years of Sonic and the Secret Rings

A Storybook Retrospective of Sonic and the Secret Rings

Once upon a time, on the nineteenth night of February 2017, I had fallen fast asleep on my sofa. An issue of Sonic the Comic lay strewn out upon my face, its pages fluttering up and down in the makeshift breeze as my body gently breathed in and out. A fireplace roared away in the corner of the room as the quiet ticking of the grandfather clock permeated the silence. Eventually, the two hands pointed upwards and the simple staccato beats transformed into a melodic chime. A strange magic seemed to fill the air.

“Zzz…” I snored, happily oblivious to my surroundings.

“Um…” murmured a familiar voice. It was not enough to make me stir.

“Zzz…” I snored some more. My unexpected guest grew impatient.

“Hmph! Hey, wake up!

I came to with a start, the comic slipping off my face and onto the floor. My eyes shot straight over to the clock. Midnight! February 20th had arrived.

“Boy, is it that late already?!”

I leaned down to reach for the comic, but instead found myself picking up a shining circular object. A copy of Sonic and the Secret Rings! But what was it doing here, and why was it out of its box…? Suddenly, a ghostly mist surrounded the disc, and out popped a female genie with pointy ears and purple-pink hair!

“Do not be alarmed,” she explained, “I am Shahra, the Genie of the Disc!”

I rubbed my eyes in disbelief. Surely this couldn’t really be happening?!

“This is what I get for listening to Big the Cat’s Emerald Coast music before bedtime…” I mumbled to myself.

“Please,” she begged, “look at this!”

A laptop materialised in her hands, the screen displaying a series of posts on an internet forum. The name of the thread: ‘Sonic and the Secret Rings sucks!

“Wow, those comments are… harsh!” I observed, a little shocked. “Opinions on it really have changed, haven’t they!”

“Our world, the world of the Secret Rings, is vanishing!” she revealed. “It is the work of an incredibly evil spirit… the Erazor Djinn! He has begun to carve up our game’s reputation. When it first released exactly ten years ago today, the reception was generally positive – but now it is crumbling apart! If our fanbase ceases to exist, then this story will be silenced forever…”

“That definitely sounds like trouble,” I agreed, “but what do you want me to do?”

“I want you to stop it. Only you can restore the people’s belief in Sonic and the Secret Rings!”

“I suppose I can help out with that… but this is all something out of a videogame, right?” I questioned, ever so slightly perplexed. “How am I supposed to do anything about that?”

“That’s easy,” Shahra replied, “you are my master, having called forth the Genie of the Disc. Bringing you into the world of the Secret Rings is within my power. Now, please place the disc into the console…”

Obediently, I bent down and inserted the game into my dusty old Nintendo Wii. With a thunderous whir of power and a flash of rainbow light, I found myself standing in a whole new world.

I had arrived in a tunnel of golden light: a swirling vortex with giant pieces of paper floating all around.

“Where are we?” I asked Shahra.

“This is the Lost Preview, the world before the Secret Rings…”

I looked down at the pages making up the road beneath my feet. They were extracts from old magazine and website articles about the game, from early impressions to initial reviews. Lo and behold, most of them were pretty optimistic.

“Hey, I used to read some of these! Wow… I’d almost forgotten that the game was called Sonic Wildfire in early development! Check out some of the great things people were saying… man, I was so excited for it back then!”

At this point, it also occurred to me that, completely automatically, I had started running along in a straight line. Shahra noticed my surprise, and commented:

“Yeah, that’s a force of habit in the world of the Secret Rings. You’ll get used to it.”

Unfortunately, it seemed I had also lost my ability to stop, and soon found myself running straight into the back of a big ugly purple genie wielding a mighty scythe. The Erazor Djinn!

“You… you must be that ape that just got added to the story!” he grinned, turning around to face me.

“Don’t you know anything? I’m not an ape, I’m a human!” I pedantically corrected him.

“I have already ruined this game’s Metacritic average and forced SEGA to de-list it from retail stores! Soon the rest of its fans will follow…”

“We’ll see about that!” I bit back, my legs still stuck in a running animation with Shahra having to hold me in place.

“Oh, you’re one of them, are you? I suppose a suitable punishment is in order, then…”

Without warning, Erazor shot a burning arrow of fire right into my chest.

“This game’s reputation is tied to the flame. Bring me one good reason not to blight it to oblivion before the arrow extinguishes. If you do not… your journalistic credibility is forfeit! Hahahahaha!”

“Ouch!” I yelped, as Erazor quickly teleported away into the ether. “I reckon I’m going to need some Gaviscon to sort out this heartburn…”

“No, we do not have time. Let the speed mend it!” Shahra suggested instead. I wondered if she realised she had just made an in-joke. “You must hurry and remember what made you fall in love with the Secret Rings a whole decade ago…”

Shahra conjured up a luxurious-looking magic carpet and gestured to climb on board with her. She handed me a Wii Remote, telling me that I could use it to steer us around.

“Now this is first-class!” I exclaimed, just grateful not to be endlessly running on my feet any more.

I looked up to see a series of locales now listed in front of me. Somewhere from the depths of the vortex, a voice was singing: ‘Make-believes reborn! Myths in mind rethought..!’. That won’t ever get annoying, I thought. Deciding to visit the areas in order, we soared onward, and my adventure into the world of the Secret Rings had begun…

One thing became clear as we perpetually ventured forwards: every step on our journey was a fast and thrilling rollercoaster ride of fun. Or, at least, most steps were. In between the high octane magic carpet flights, we had to make shorter and less exciting visits to each locale. I didn’t much see the point in revisiting the same places over and over again for a number of trivial tasks: collecting (or not collecting) rings, destroying a very specific amount of evil spirits, or painstakingly hunting for dinosaur eggs. Shahra, however, insisted that it was necessary in order to forge the path ahead – which would have been fine, except that we had to zig-zag between locales to do so, with increasingly grating echoes of ‘Make believes reborn!’ greeting us every time. For a world so obsessed with moving forwards, Secret Rings didn’t really seem to comprehend the virtues of straightforward linearity.

“This is needlessly obtuse, you do realise that?” I remarked. Shahra chose to ignore me.

It had also become clear after a while that our mode of transport was far from ideal. The Wii Remote, though a novel means of steering, was just that: a novelty. Tilting to and fro worked fine, but the struggle to slow down and reverse caused untold amount of crashes and near-misses. I pleaded with Shahra for a more traditional method of controlling our movement, but she insisted that this was the only way. I started to believe that turning around and going backwards must be considered a crime in these lands. Either that or the world had just taken Green Forest’s ‘Won’t Stop, Just Go!’ mentality a little too seriously.

By the time we finally reached the heart of the Night Palace, I was feeling pretty jaded and weary – our adventuring had literally been non-stop! But, in spite of all my frustrations, there was no time to rest. The flaming arrow in my chest was nearly gone, and the Erazor Djinn still had to be stopped. Entering his throne room, we could hear him reciting an incantation:

“Ifalas zaras I e zaraq, Ifalas zaras I e zaraq…”

“What’s he doing?” I asked Shahra.

“He’s summoning an angry mob to burn what’s left of this game’s reputation to the ground!” she panicked. “You must stop him, now!”

Erazor finished his spell and an army of disgruntled Sonic fans with torches and pitchforks materialised beside him. Sensing our presence, Erazor turned around and laughed maniacally.

“Ah, it’s the ape again! Have you brought me your one good reason?”

“Umm… actually, I don’t know…” I answered honestly.

Erazor and Shahra looked equally stunned.

“You see, I can completely understand why some people wouldn’t like this game. It can be a right royal pain trying to traverse through these areas using the Wii Remote, and the constant coming and going between different areas to complete missions can bring the momentum grinding to a halt. Which is ironic really, considering it’s all meant to be about never-ending speed!”

Shahra put her head in her hands, defeated. Erazor smirked and nodded to the angry mob to start approaching.

“But,” I continued, “that doesn’t mean it’s not without its charm. For all of the game’s faults, I can’t help but admire it. Whether it was Sand Oasis, Evil Foundry, Levitated Ruin, Skeleton Dome, or anywhere else: this is a gorgeous, gorgeous world. The landscapes, the lighting, the set pieces… they’re all beautifully diverse. And all from a launch-window title on a standard definition console! Maybe including dinosaurs and pirates is a little strange thematically, but I’m willing to give those a pass for sheer spectacle alone. Oh, and I absolutely loved the music of this world, too! I may never know what an Unawakening Float is, or find out who’s gonna rock the place, place, place, but these are all songs I will never forget. They’re just so… unique. And I think that about sums it up: Secret Rings is a game that dares to be different. Yes, it’s a product of its time that cashed in on gimmicky motion controls. Yes, it hasn’t aged very well by modern standards. But back in 2007, compared to the other Sonic titles on the market, this was a big deal. Strip away its technical flaws and Secret Rings is a game that’s simple yet compelling in its story, its presentation… and, at times, even its gameplay. Trash talk it all you like, but its creative heart will burn on with a passion that can never be extinguished!”

It was at this point that I expected the flaming arrow in my chest to burst forth with almighty, triumphant vigour. Alas, no such luck.

“Pah! You think that’s good enough to stop me?” laughed Erazor at my excuses.

“Oh… umm…” I desperately scrambled for other ideas, “well I suppose Secret Rings is technically canon now, seeing as it did get mentioned in Generations, so…”

Erazor just carried on laughing. Even I knew that was a pathetic attempt.

“You have failed, ape! Now, feel the wrath of the flame!”

With a click of his fingers, Erazor’s angry mob angled their pitchforks in my direction and came after me. I needed a get-out and I needed it quick.

“This doesn’t look good! Shahra, please lend me your power!”

A distant voice cried out: ‘Time break!!’

There was a flash of grey and the world slowed to a crawl. Seizing the opportunity, I turned and ran. And I ran, and I ran, until I found my way home. Sonic somehow managed it, so I figured I could too.

I don’t know whether my efforts managed to make any difference to the fate of the Secret Rings. Ten years on from its original release, I got to relive both its highs and its lows – and, while it often felt like an arduous journey, I do not regret making a return visit to its world. Strange, isn’t it? That’s this game in a nutshell. Maybe that’s what makes it special.

The past was kind to Secret Rings. The present, not so much. Its future reputation? Well, that remains uncertain. Day by day, only time will tell if it’s meant to be… but in my opinion?

It’s worth a chance.

– THE END –

Celebrate 10 years of Sonic and the Secret Rings by sharing your memories below!

Friday Five: Best Sonic Games of the Past Generation

sonic_generations_cityescape2

While we’ve had the Wii U for a full year now, the PS4 and X-Box One have made their debut. Since Sonic Lost World is part of the new generation of systems, I thought it would be a good time to reflect back on the best Sonic games of this past Generation. It was a hard list to make, not because there was a ton of great Sonic games to choose from but because there were so few to be brutally honest. Also, I have one rule to this list, no spinoffs. This means no Mario and Sonic or All-Stars Racing. (I should have been stricter with the staff pics and added no remakes or fan games but too little too late.) I wanted this to focus solely on Sonic. This means there’s a game in here that wouldn’t normally make any top five list. So prepare for the good, the great and the…..meh.

NOTE: This is an opinionated article and everyone’s gonna have their favorites, so if your list is different from mine that’s fine but let’s make a huge fuss over it okay?

Continue reading Friday Five: Best Sonic Games of the Past Generation

Mash-Up Monday: Soul Eater

Yo! Hey! Hiya! Thanks for comin’, great to see you!

…okay, well, that’s about all that I have to say.

Alighty, kidding aside, welcome to a very special Mash-Up Monday, everybody! We’ve got quite a unique haul for you today, though readers bearing unstable souls are recommended not to subject themselves to the following mash-ups. Should you experience any given sign of insanity or madness, please do close the tab and look up something soothing, like adorable kittens!

Awww...

This week, we’ve got a total of four music combinations, all pertaining to the Soul Eater anime’s soundtrack! First one up is “Wisp Blitz”, a combination of Planet Wisp from Sonic Colours and “Blitz”!

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y789zagfWLE

The three remaining mash-ups are all found after the jump.

Continue reading Mash-Up Monday: Soul Eater

Sound Test Saturday: Tales of a Hedgehog

Now let’s be honest for a second: there aren’t enough remixes of songs from the Storybook series, so far comprised of Sonic and the Secret Rings and Sonic and the Black Knight. Say what you will of the games themselves, but you can’t deny that they have their golden moments, their soundtracks being no exception. That’s why I’m a little stumped as to find only a handful of Storybook mixes out there! Disappoint, Sonic community!

For that reason, this week’s Sound Test Saturday will pay tribute to the spin-off (or is it canon now?) entries and the music that accompanied them!

Let’s start things off with DjReds‘ take on “The Palace That Was Found” from SatSR‘s own Evil Foundry!

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tfaz55_66G4

Dive into the “Dragon’s Lair” and finish with the “Unawakening Float” after the jump!

Continue reading Sound Test Saturday: Tales of a Hedgehog

eBay Watch: Little-seen Stuff Going Under the Hammer

Our good friend Kevin “ArchangelUK” Eva got up to quite a bit in his time at Sega UK, so it stands to reason he’s got his fair share of rare Sonic merch. Now the former Community Manager is raising funds with a load of his stuff seeing the light of eBay.

Now I’m no merch hog, but most of this stuff I didn’t even know existed, so if you like your collectables, you know what to do.



Continue reading eBay Watch: Little-seen Stuff Going Under the Hammer

The Top 10 Sonic Games Of The Decade

2009’s almost out. That means we’ve enjoyed a whole decade of Sonic the Hedgehog goodness in the last ten years, from 2000’s Sonic Shuffle (for Americans, we didn’t get it until the year after, damn SEGA) to 2009’s Mario and Sonic at the Olympic Winter Games. So, rather than just round up the games of the year, The Sonic Stadium crew have taken to list their Top 10 Sonic games of the decade!

This is how we’ve done it. A bunch of TSS Staffers wrote over their unique Top 10 (which will be listed at the end of this article). Along with it, a short paragraph as to why they ranked each game the way they did. When bunching all of these lists together, we formed an average by giving points to each game’s placement on each staffer’s countdown (so a #1 position would get 10 points, and a game in 10th place would get 1 point). Add all the points up, and we have our own, not-so-scientific average. What game will get TSS’ #1 Sonic Game of the Decade? Read on, dear reader… Continue reading The Top 10 Sonic Games Of The Decade

Sonic Wrecks’ 10-4-10 Dreamcast Anniversary Competition

prizorzFor those of you old enough to remember, it’s ten years to the day since SEGA launched their Dreamcast console on the 9th of September 1999, and to celebrate AAUK and Sonic Wrecks is giving away ten fantastic prizes to those who are floating around on Twitter at 09:09:09am GMT! All you need to do is follow SonicWrecks on Twitter and be around to ReTweet (RT) a specific phrase – ten lucky hedgehogs will snag themselves one of these goody bags, which include some rare items like a Sonic Unleashed hoodie and the Megadrive Ultimate Collection Vinyl.

If that wasn’t enough, each winner gets themselves one of the exclusive artbooks that were given away at Summer of Sonic! One VERY lucky hedgehog will win themselves a signed Sonic and the Secret Rings poster signed by Yojiro Ogawa and the SatSR gang.

For more details, Terms & Conditions, as well as the full prize breakdown, head over to Sonic Wrecks.

You guys are certainly getting your fix of prizes at the moment!

Fanatics: Incredible Darkspine Sonic Art

We’re on a Super Sonic tangent in honor of Sonic’s latest lulzfest of a super form.  The previous, and first, entry in the “Sonic Storybook Series,” Sonic and the Secret Rings, brought us a form that we’ve given the name “Darkspine Sonic.”  ShadoHejjihoggu has created an amazing blotch rendition of this super form and it’s incredible!  Check out the laundry list of  materials that ShadoHejjihoggu used to make this piece:

Tools:
Watercolor Paint
Prisma Color Pencil
Prisma Lightfast Pencil
Salt
Rubbing alcohol
Que Tip
Paint brush
Colorless Blender, with brush tip
Watercolor Prisma Pencils
Cheap Ballpoint pen
Sketch book paper

Nice work, Shado.  Send some more in, will ya?

Fan Spotlight: Neodaft’s Art

What’s up?  Your community writer, Mister Sling, has something totally awesome to show you.  I like to peruse DeviantArt and look for some talented Sonic artists and I have found one today in a member named “Neodaft.  The work of art that caught my attention is straight out of Sonic and the Secret Rings:

Not gonna lie…that is pretty rad right there.  Neodaft said that he used Prismacolors, white paper, eraser, a “pilot H-165 clickable pencil” and Photoshop.  As a fan of Secret Rings, I dig it.  As a fan of Sonic art, I really dig it.  The style of the art really draws on the storybook theme of the game and the blur added in Photoshop makes Sonic’s speed convincing.

Visit neodaft’s DeviantArt page for more awesome art.  I’ll catch you guys later for another Fan Spotlight.  I really enjoy seeing how talented everybody in this community is.

Do you know of some fan created work that is totally awesome?  Submit it to the Fan Spotlight, so it can be featured here!  Send a PM to Slingerland on SSMB!

SEGA giving away Sonic Team Wii

Remember the blue Sonic Team branded SEGA Dreamcast released in Japan back in the day? Svend managed to grab the blue VMU that went with it but has yet to get the console rarity. It’s something he incessantly mutters when he strolls into TSS Towers.

SEGA Germany is launching a contest to co-incide with the launch of Sonic and the Secret Rings over there, and the prizes are enough to trigger a fatal relapse. Open to German fans and extended to visitors of SEGA Europe’s official Sonic City Blognik, one lucky fan could win a Nintendo Wii decorated with the Sonic Team logo! Continue reading SEGA giving away Sonic Team Wii

Secret Rings Hits UK Charts

Sonic and the Secret Rings appears to be doing what Sonic 06 wasn’t – selling. Being the first Nintendo Wii game in a good month or so, it makes sense that pre-orders for the game last week helped the game storm to the top of the Wii Charts in UK GAME stores before it had even been released.

That streak looks set to continue, as the official UK Software Charts sees the latest Sonic game hit #5 in the Top 10. This is especially good news considering the Top 4 – Final Fantasy XII, Crackdown, The Sims 2 Seasons and (especially) FIFA 07 aren’t going to budge anytime soon.

If you’re still sitting on the fence as to whether to get Sonic and the Secret Rings or not, check TSS’ Review to get the full lowdown on the game.

Thanks to SSMB’er “Shahra The Genie” for the tip.

Sonic and the Secret Rings

It wouldn’t be unkind to say that Secret Rings didn’t exactly get the biggest buzz in the Sonic fanbase. After getting stung with Sonic 06, which was claimed to be a glorious return to the franchise, it’s only understandable that everyone was taking an extra step back with this one. But as time went on, curiosity rose and now many people are betting their lives on Sonic and the Secret Rings being the ultimate Sonic game that everyone should own. So, is it?

The story isn’t your typical Sonic-goes-after-Robotnik gig. After falling asleep reading the ‘Arabian Nights’ tale, Sonic is beckoned by a genie spirit called Shahra. She explains to Sonic that some purple git called Erazor Djinn is wrecking the pages of the Arabian Nights book and re-writing the story to his own design. So ol’ bluey gets warped into the classic book, equipped with a ring to call on Shahra’s power whenever he has a wish he needs granting. Insert obligatory “She can grant me a wish, hurr hurr” quip here.

The graphics certainly show off Sonic’s character and style, even in a different world.

From then on you’re hurtled into the game. There are seven worlds to complete, each containing 12 missions that unlock themselves as you progress from one stage to another. You will need to clear certain missions to continue the story, and Secret Rings holds a refreshingly non-linear method of play – even though you work through the seven worlds in order, you may jump back from one to another and back again as part of the storyline.

The graphics certainly look the part for a Wii game. Sonic’s looking the best he’s probably been for years – the long stilty legs are no more, he’s been shortened a little bit, and his model is altogether much better, despite lacking the polygons of the “ultra 1-million poly look at me” stoat that featured on the XBOX 360. The colours aren’t quite your primary colour fare usually associated with Sonic games; to coincide with the theme/element of fire, everything seems to be coloured with a warmer tone. Perfect for Summer. It might not be to everyone’s tastes, but it certainly suits the mood the game is trying to create.

The cut scenes we’ve mentioned before are 2D still-frame animations, which are better characterised and command more atmosphere than non-CG cutscenes in Sonic Heroes and Sonic 06. On top of this, the music is also of a very Arabian style, along with cheesy rock being the order of the day. It’ll annoy those who don’t like nonsensical lyrics in their Sonic games, but if you forego that then stages like Evil Foundry will certainly keep you pumping and on your toes. Just don’t feel tempted to talk about ‘Rocking the Place’. You know ‘no-one can touch this’.

Sonic and the Secret Rings Japanese site update

The Japanese site of Sonic and the Secret of the Rings has had a major update! They’ve released new info, new artwork, and much more new.

I realize many of you can’t read Japanese, so let me translate some of the highlights. The story is still about the same as we know; Sonic one day falls asleep while reading Arabian Nights, and awakes to meet a dijjin named Shahra. She tells him of an evil dijjin named Erazer, who is erasing the tales of Arbain Nights. It’s up to Sonic to stop him, for he was destined to by legend. Plus, if he doesn’t, Erazer will come to his world to wreak havoc. Sonic agrees and goes off to Arabian Nights! But when he enters the world, he encounters Erazer fairly early. Erazer calls Sonic a rat, then sends a fire arrow straight into Sonic’s heart. The arrow is slowly killing Sonic, but at the same time with Sharha’s help, Sonic can control the fire to his advantage. The only way to put out the flame is to defeat Erazer. Continue reading Sonic and the Secret Rings Japanese site update

“Blue Dude With a ‘Tude” Sweepstakes

Sega seems to be going all out in it’s promotion for Sonic’s upcoming Wii appearance, Sonic and the Secret Rings. They’ve teamed up with nationally known American slushy maker “Slush Puppie” to bring you the “Blue Dude with a ‘Tude Sweepstakes”.

This contest is only eligible for people in the 48 contiguous states of the United States, as well as Canada (excluding Quebec). You can enter this contest via either paper slips at participating retail locations, or by printing up a slip on their site.

The contest started on February 1st (sorry for the late notice) and ends on May 31st. Continue reading “Blue Dude With a ‘Tude” Sweepstakes

Gamespot Interview Reveals Information

Yojiro Ogawa, in a new review with Gamespot, spills the beans on some of the games status. Though this is his third interview in a week, this is quite possibly his most in-depth interview yet.

First off, it seems that the game hasn’t been in actual development as long as people expected; they only started programing the game last January and only have had a little over a year to work on it. This isn’t exactly bad, though, cause they have actually pushed back the release date a few times to put in everything they wanted to. To make up for lost time, though, they doubled the development team on the game so more people could work on it. One half of the team worked on Adventure Mode (the game’s main mode) and the other half worked on Party Mode (multiplayer minigame mode). this explains why the multiplayer and single player seem like two totally different games. Continue reading Gamespot Interview Reveals Information

SatSR website up, new Ogawa interview

New Sonic art... Sonic's such a poser.

Sonic and the Secret Rings American site has finally gone up revealing lots of new info about the game, including story, minigames, and unlockables.

The story is simple, Sonic is laying down after reading his copy of Arabian Nights, but falls asleep. He wakes up to discover a mysterious genie named Shahra in front of him. She tells him she is the genie of the ring, and tells him of an evil genie named Erazer who is- get this -erasing the pages of Arabian Nights. If he succeeds in his goal, Erazer will break free of the book and become free in Sonic’s world, likely continuing his role as the backside of a pencil in the real world. Sonic agrees to Shahra’s pleas and enters the world of Arabian Nights on top of a magical carpet. Continue reading SatSR website up, new Ogawa interview

Nintendo talks to Yojiro Ogawa

Just recently, the Official Nintendo Magazine had a little chat with Yojiro Ogawa, Sonic Team member and esteemed game developer – also responsible for Sonic and the Secret Rings, Sonic’s latest outing on the Nintendo Wii system.

According to the article, the lovely chaps down at Nintendo Magazine had a sitdown with Ogawa, and, after having a chat with him, gave a run through the complete version of Sonic and the Secret Rings. Here’s what they have to say about it:

“As you may know by now, the game is controlled by moving a constantly-running Sonic left and right. This is done by holding the Remote on its side and tilting it to make Sonic turn. Like all the best Sonic games it is simple to pick up and play and while he’s racing through the levels Sonic can perform loads of different moves. Continue reading Nintendo talks to Yojiro Ogawa

Famitsu Releases New Sonic and the Secret Rings Trailer

Multiplayer Character Select Screen

Famitsu released a new nine minute trailer of Sonic and the Secret Rings on their website. This trailer is an extended version of one that IGN released a week ago. But this goes in further, much further, revealing new levels, multiplayer, and even characters.

Within the trailer, they include an in-depth look at multiplayer. Working similarly to Sonic Shuffle, up to four players choose one of eight possible characters. They then choose a game board play in a series of minigames. The player that wins the minigame gets a chance to open a treasure chest. Treasure chest either contain a Sonic Token or a booby trap. If you get a Sonic Token, you get to choose another Treasure Chest, but if you get a booby trap, your chance to open treasure chest is up and all players play another minigame. Player with the most Sonic Tokens at the end wins.

Along with their look at multiplayer, though, we also see new footage of some new levels, displaying how the games mechanics and level design is presented in the title.

We here at Sonic Stadium will keep you up with the game news, and watch progress on the trailer on the discussion forum on the Sonic Stadium Message board.

Sonic and the Secret Rings release date revealed!

Sonic and the Secret Rings, formerly known as Sonic Wildfire, and Sonic’s latest (and first) adventure on the new Nintendo Wii system, may be arriving earlier than initially expected!

Originally scheduled for launch around Spring of 2007, then later revealed as February 27, GameSpot recently announced that the game will, in fact, launch a week earlier – on February 20th! Good news for all you impatient little buggers, eh? =P

Sonic and the Secret Rings is Sonic’s latest adventure on next-gen consoles, and makes use of the Wii’s unique control scheme to maneuver Sonic through an “Arabian Nights” type setting. Stay tuned to Sonic News for further updates on Sonic and the Secret Rings, as well as other Sonic-related events!

New Sonic and the Secret Rings Info

British gaming magazine Games Master have revealed a plethora of new information about the soon to be released Sonic and the Secret Rings for Nintendo Wii.

The following information is taken from The Wiire’s report.
According to Games Master, Sonic and the Secret Rings will feature 10 different levels, five of which being Sand Oasis, Dinosaur Jungle, Evil Foundry, Levitated Ruin and Pirate Storm. Each level has 10 missions such as stealth attack, rampage, chain challenge, beat the clock, and more.

In addition, Sonic’s skills will be customizable, with upwards of 100 available to learn. These skills affect everything from Sonic’s handling, to moveset, to special abilities – such as slowing down time or speed boosting. Experience points are earned through the game that grant players access to these abilities, but only four can be maintained at any given time (through rings Sonic wears). Continue reading New Sonic and the Secret Rings Info

Bonus Sweatband with Secret Rings Pre-order

Pre-ordering Sonic’s debut Wii game in the US will bag you a free wristband sporting the blue blur, according to a new promotion by retailer EBGames.com.

The website offer can also be made in ‘real life’ stores, so those who aren’t exactly web-friendly can secure one in the comfort of bricks and mortar.

The band itself features a blue line with a generic picture of Sonic on it. Might look like someone from Spain made a knock off official band, but hey, free’s free so who are we to complain? Click the link in ‘More Info’ below to hit the EBGames page.

EBGames pens Sonic and the Secret Rings for a release date of 27th February 2007, but remember that dates on a retail website are not indicative of final or official release.

Cheers to our nameless tipster who popped the news in our inbox the other day. We’d buy you a beer, but well, we won’t.

Sonic and the Secret Rings JPN Site Open

The Nintendo Wii title, Sonic and the secret of the rings has had it”s japanese site opened today! You can visit the new site (Be warned, it is in flash) through the link in the “MORE INFORMATION” Box at the bottom of this page. Also of note is that the game’s japanese title is to be “”SONIC to Himitsu no RING”

A newly revealed official render show that Sonic himself is wearing an odd glowing ring on the middle finger of his right hand. It is unknown exactly what this plain yet mysterious looking piece of jewelry is or what it does but one can safely assume that it has a big link to the storyline of the game that is due out some time in 2007.

In other somewhat related news, the gaming site IGN have updated their Sonic and the secret of the rings site with new screenshots of the game in action (Follow the link road in the “DOWNLOADABLE MEDIA” box at the bottom of this page). Adorning the bottom left hand corner of the recent screenshots is a small image depicting the control scheme of the game. Whether or not it is showing the player what to press on the Wii”s controller is anyone’s guess but it seems feasible….

Sonic Wild Fire’s New Title is Confirmed!

The video game website known as Gaming Age has very recently reported that they have had word that the Nintendo Wii Sonic title, Sonic Wild Fire now has a new name.

The innovative game is now titled “Sonic and the Secret of the Rings”. It is now known that this new name is now official due to word from SEGA Europe.

For now, not much can be deduced from the new name but the game may obviosly involve Sonic cracking the secret of the gold rings which are a Sonic game series staple.

The game is due out sometime in March 2007. Meanwhile, stay tuned to the Sonic Stadium and Sonic News for more information as it is revealed.