[UPDATE] Sonic 4 PS3 Dynamic Theme Coming To PlayStation Store

UPDATE: ArchangelUK of SEGA Europe and Sonic Wrecks has received European and Australian pricing and release date information from SCEE. The theme will be available Wednesday 19th January for free to PlayStation Plus members, and cost €1.99/£1.59/$AU3.45 for everyone else.
Source: Sonic Wrecks/UPDATE END

SEGA’s RubyEclipse has revealed that a Sonic the Hedgehog 4: Episode 1 Dynamic Theme will soon be available on the PlayStation Store for PS3 owners thanks to a joint effort from SEGA and Sony. This theme is based on the game’s first stage Splash Hill Zone and features Sonic running and spin-dashing around, with an appearance from Dr. Eggman every now and then. Another cool feature is the ring sound effect we’ve all grown to know and love that will trigger when toggling around the XMB.

This Dynamic Theme will be a part of this coming Tuesday’s PlayStation Store update in the U.S. and will be released shortly after in Europe, so maybe Wednesday’s European PlayStation Store update, if we’re lucky? The theme will cost $2.99 in the U.S. and for a limited time will be available free to all PlayStation Plus members. No European prices were given.

If you missed the announcement, SEGA added exclusive Sonic 4 Avatar items to the Xbox Live Marketplace for Xbox 360 owners in December.

Source: SEGA of America Blog & Sonic City Blognik

Thanks to CobraRoll at the SSMB for the heads up!

Will you be downloading this theme? Let us know in the comments.

AAUK Reveals New Sonic Colours Info

After some hands-on time with Sonic Colours, SEGA Europe Community Manager ArchangelUK has revealed 7 new pieces of Sonic Colours information via the Sonic City Blognik today. The information focuses on story, characters and call-backs to Sonic Unleashed. Some teases are also made to news coming in next week, which we’ll be sure to report on as soon as it is revealed.

Here’s the full list of information below:

1) Dr. Eggman has built his park after developing a sense of remorse for his past “indiscretions”. Hmm… a likely story.

2) At one point in an early cutscene Sonic “breaks the fourth wall” and talks directly to the gamer.

3) SA-55, the round red robot also known as “Ergo” by fans who appeared in Sonic Unleashed will return, but slightly more jaded than before. Oh and by the way SA-55 ISN’T his name… his name is actually “Orbot”

4) Orbot also has a counterpart this game… who we’ll be revealing next week.

5) Tails’ “Miles Electric” handheld device that appeared in Sonic Unleashed makes a re-appearance.

6) The boss you have already likely seen from Tropical Resort Dr. Eggman refers to as the “Big Boy”.

7) The curly haired white Wisp is important to the Colours story and its name is…. something you’ll have to tune in next week to find out!

Source: ArchangelUK at the Sonic City Blognik

Sonic Colours and Franchise Changing News Coming This Week

You may have seen our BIG Summer of Sonic announcement which was first revealed on Radio Redux earlier this evening but those who tuned in until the end of the show will have heard ArchangelUK’s announcement of two forthcoming announcements for the week ahead. First there will be some Sonic Colours news Monday and second there will be “franchise changing news” on Thursday which won’t be particularly about the games, has nothing to do with Summer of Sonic and will be revealed exclusively on the Sonic City Blognik.

What could these announcements be? We’ll keep an eye on the Blognik and report back here, for now let the speculation begin in the comments.

UPDATE: From ArchangelUK in the comments –

I did say “franchise changing” kind of all overdramatically – Its not THAT big, though it does alter some things… you’ll just have to see what I mean. Incidentally those who’ve so far guessed are all wrong. “Sonic 4 is delayed” peeps included.

[UPDATE: Some Stickers Contain New Art]Sonic Sticker Collection Hits WH Smith Stores

UPDATE 5: Thanks to members at the SSMB(here and here) we’re now discovering that some of the stickers contain all new artwork of the various characters. /UPDATE 5 END

UPDATE 4: We’re getting more reports from the SSMB topic that the poster for shiny stickers that the sticker book mentions is missing and it now appears the sticker collection has no shiny stickers anyway. It looks like the shiny stickers and poster to hold them may be scrapped ideas which Factory Entertainment forgot to remove mention of in the book. /UPDATE 4 END

UPDATE 3:
We can now reveal thanks to Stasis that the book has sticker pages with profiles for the following characters (joint pages in bold) –
Sonic the Hedgehog (2 pages including Super Sonic and Sonic the Werehog), Miles “Tails” Prower, Amy Rose, Knuckles the Echidna, Big the Cat, Cream & Cheese, Dr.Eggman, Shadow the Hedgehog, Rouge the Bat, Silver the Hedgehog & Blaze the Cat, Vector the Crocodile, Espio the Chameleon & Charmy Bee, Jet the Hawk, Storm the Albatross & Wave the Swallow, Sonic Universe(2 pages including Gemerl, Emerl, Chaos, Tikal, Chao’s, E-123 Omega, E-102 Gamma, Metal Sonic, Eggman Nega, Marine and Captain Whisker & Johnny), Sonic & Tails, Sonic & Amy, Sonic & Knuckles, Dr.Eggman, Shadow & Rouge, Fulfilment. /UPDATE 3 END

UPDATE 2: The company behind the sticker collection is Factory Entertainment, they have a website here, if your book is missing the poster and you want to enquire about it you can find contact details at their site here. /UPDATE 2 END

UPDATE: Thanks to Nemain at the SSMB we have a link to an eBay auction selling the stickers, the seller states there are 140 stickers to collect. Stasis in the comments has informed us that he has picked up a copy of the book for £1.99 and confirms the 140 stickers total while also informing us of an advertisement in the book for the UK release of the Jazwares Sonic merchandise revealing a June release date for them. Thanks Nemain and Stasis.

Super Lombax at the SSMB informs that the book comes with a pull-out poster but unfortunately none of the books at her store had the pull-out poster for some reason. Stasis has also informed us that all 3 books at 3 seperate retailers in his area are also missing the poster which is used to hold the shiney stickers in the collecton. Look’s like this may be a problem at all retailers stocking the book./UPDATE END

The Sonic City Blognik has just been tipped off via their @SEGA Twitter account by user Adwil24 that a new Sonic Sticker Collection has been released in WH Smith stores which suggests it’s available in the UK and Ireland. This is the first official sticker collection in the UK since the Mega Drive days. No other info was given apart from the above photo, we’ll try to get our hands on one along with some stickers and report back.

Mysterious Picture Appears at Sonic City Blognik

ArchangelUK at the Sonic City Blognik has posted up a mysterious sketch of a figure playing with a remote controlled car which could be a clue to an Xbox 360 Avatar Marketplace item given the sketched out character clicks its fingers to make the controller and car appear like with alot of Avatar items. Wether this will include costumes or other items too or not we’ll have to wait and see.

Source: Sonic City Blognik

ASR Developer Diary #3

Sonic City Blognik has updated with the 3rd Sonic & SEGA All Stars Racing Developer Diary. Steve Lycett of Sumo Digital returns again to talk more about the game’s concepts that derived from his trip to SEGA Japan’s offices. This time Steve reveals that the All Star Move’s came from a suggestion from the guys over at Sonic Team when Steve was asked “Where are the SuperStar moves?” Steve explains that they hadn’t thought about that as they originally planend for it to be a normal racer but after the discussion the idea get’s included the game.

‘Where all the SuperStar moves’ we get asked. Well, at this point I refer to my earlier diary, at that time the game was a pure racer. There were no weapons or special moves, it was all about lines and drifting. ‘We loved those in SST, you should have them in this’. Every so often on games, you have a ‘Eureka!’ moment, and this was one of them. We reply that we’d not considered it, but it wasn’t out of the question…

And thus were born the All-Star moves. Back then we went ‘Well, we could use this to get players back into the race, so they can take revenge on anyone who’s knocked them about on the track’ and now, well they’re something very special. Each character has their own All-Star move, they’re all things that our slightly insane design team figured would be impossible to do in a racing game!

Steve and his team also did plenty of rounds around SEGA’s various game development studio’s to discuss including various character’s and tracks to which each one gave them the ok.

The day goes on, we go visit AM1, who let us play House of the Dead EX, a game we’ve only seen announced a week before! You’ve likely seen we’ve got Zobio and Zobiko from this game, as they’re in the Halloween trailer.

We’re not done there either. Next we’re off to see AM2. Once word gets round who we are, we’re extremely privileged to be asked what we think of Tokyo R-Tuned, which at that stage wasn’t even totally finished. We’re led into a maze of wires, with cabinets that are plugged into all manner of development kits, and get to be, I suspect, the first westerners to play the game. It’s amazing by the way. Not only did we leave with the things we wanted, we were also offered levels from R-Tuned if we’d like them…!

Next we’re off to AM+, Yu Suzuki’s SEGA division. Sadly Yu was out of the office, but here again we’re invited to play SEGA Race TV for our thoughts. It too is excellent We leave with the promise we can have Ryo Hazuki – thus making a lot of Shenmue fans happy we hope.

Check out the full diary entry over at the Sonic City Blognik.

ASR Dev Diary #2

The second part of the Sonic & SEGA All Stars Raing Developer Diary with Sumo Digital’s Steve Lycett has been posted over at the Sonic City Blognik.

In this entry Steve Lycett talk’s about his trip to Japan with his team to visit SEGA Japan and discuss a certain character with AM3 that Sumo Digital would like to include in the game. The character get’s permitted although Steve can’t reveal what character it is yet.

Steve also confirms the previously stated 20 character total that retailers started listing a month or so back –

We end the day on a high with one character approved – and I finally drop into bed in the hotel after nearly 24 hours of travel, thinking 1 down… 19 to go…

AM3 made Crazy Taxi and Ghost Squad so could we be seeing a character from either of those franchises join Sonic & SEGA All Stars Racing? With Crazy Taxi being a driving game then a character from that franchise would be perfect.

That’s all the ASR info from the diary entry though the rest of it is a good read too about Steve’s comical experience with a bottle of Coke right in SEGA Japan’s building and identity problems before being allowed into SEGA’s office’s.

Iinformation coming in the next entry is teased too –

Who else did I get to meet? Did we get any turned down/ What exactly is it like in Sonic Teams offices… I’ve got to keep you waiting as I’m out of space – till next time!

Check the entry with more pics out over at the Sonic City Blognik.

ASR Wheel Europe Only, Dev Diary #2 Due This Week and Europe Release 26th Feb?

Remember the Sonic & SEGA All Stars Racing themed Wii Wheel revealed at ShopTo.net that we reported about? Well SEGA Online Community Manager ArchangelUK has revealed today on the Sonic City Blognik that the peripheral will only see a release in European territorys and will give more details on how you can get it soon. ArchangelUK also reveals that the second part of the Developer Diary will be released this week so expect a report from us on that.

GAME and their other store Gamestation’s websites have updated their listed release date of 2010 to 26th February 2010 today, this is in no way official until SEGA reveals a date but normally this close to release they are normally on the spot. This date is also very different to the March 26th date most retailers have been speculating for months now. Most U.S. retailers are listing a 23rd February release date so if this 26th Feb date is right then we in Europe won’t have long to wait after the U.S.

New Christmas Themed ASR Trailer

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n87VS0RB3J8[/youtube]

As a Christmas present to all fans of upcoming racer Sonic & SEGA All Stars Racing, SEGA Europe have released the above trailer. It show’s more footage of the Billy Hatcher Blizzard Castle track to someone singing a SEGA themed version of the classic carol Twelve Days Of Christmas. Nothing new is revealed in the trailer before anyone asks.

Source: Sonic City Blognik

Sonic & SEGA All Stars Racing is on track for an Early 2010 release.

P.S. Yes the pun was intended.

Second Piece Of M&S Olympic Winter Games Merchandise Revealed

M&S2 Sticker Sheet
After the news of the Mario & Sonic at the Olympic Winter Games pre-order t-shirt at HMV ArchangelUK over at the Sonic City Blognik has revealed SEGA Europe’s second piece of merchandise. The item as seen in the above photo is a sticker sheet of various pieces of art for the playable characters included in the game. Alot of the art you will have seen on the games website but a few pieces are new such as the Bowser art. AAUK hasn’t revealed what SEGA Europe plan for the sticker sheets but we’ll let you know as soon as any information is given.

Source:
Sonic City Blognik

SBK Script Up For Grabs In SEGA Europe Competition

satbk-script

UPDATE: In an update at the Sonic City Blognik ArchangelUK informs that the competition is now open to all countries.

SEGA Europe together with entertainment and media news website Digital Spy are offering you the chance to win one of only two copies made of the Japanese Sonic and the Black Knight script. Even better it’s signed by the game’s producer Tetsu Katano. ArchangelUK tells us in his latest Sonic City Blognik entry that he has the other one but with a bit of luck and by answering a simple competition question you could be the lucky owner of the second one. Three runners-up will get a Sonic and the Black Knight inflatable sword and a SEGA vinyl sticker. Entries are to be one per household and are to be in by Friday, April 10, 2009 at midday.

You can check out the question and full competition details at Digital Spy’s website.

Tommy Tallarico Gets Quizzed On SatBK

SEGA Community frontman ArchAngelUK spent a good chunk of time chatting to Tommy Tallarico, legendary game music composer and host of the Video Games Live concert. As some of you may know already, he’s doing the soundtrack to Sonic and the Black Knight, so this seemed like the perfect chance to ask him about the blue blur and his experiences working with Jun ‘Junny Baby’ Senoue.

One of the highlights includes Tommy’s intended approach for the game, whereby the legality of the original Sonic the Hedgehog theme tune screwed up a possibility of there being some kind of medieval remix:

I would have loved to have been able to take the original Sonic theme and mess with it. I was able to do something similar when I worked on a lot of the Pac-Man games with Namco… or the Bond game I worked on. I’m not exactly sure if SEGA owns 100% of the rights to that original music or not. I believe we had to go through a few different companies (including the original composer) to get the rights to play it in Video Games Live. But to directly answer the question… I didn’t really take inspiration from past tracks, I just kept imagining the Sonic character and all my Sonic experiences and how I would imagine it sounding like (without being able to use the older stuff).

Tommy also states that he feels the modern Sonic games have lost a certain something that the classics have by the truckload. He’ll be happy to learn that Sega have just released Mega Drive Ultimate Collection for the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3, then:

I’d be lying if I said I’ve been happy with where the Sonic games and franchise have gone. Maybe I’m just more of an old school type of guy, but I always thought the 2-D Sonic games had more playability and fun factor than the 3-D stuff. I hope that statement doesn’t offend anyone, it’s all just personal opinion and taste I suppose. But I really have a fond place in my heart for the 2-D Sonic stuff.

Give the interview – part one of two – a good read, it’s a blast. Although I have to say that a lot of Tommy’s answers seem awfully similar to an interview I conducted with Tallarico about two years ago. As the interview conducted was a written one, it seems likely that Tommy pulled from his responses to my questions to save time rather than some true underhanded plagiarism going on. But still, naughty naughty… veeeeeeery naughty, guys.

Tommy Tallarico – You Asked, He Answered! Part 1 – Sonic City Blognik (mostly)

Sonic City Relaunching?

ArchangelUK is up to his old tricks again over at the Sonic City Blognik, he has posted a new entry with a question mark and a small square piece of an image. If anyone remembers, AAUK did this when he launched the European official Sonic site Sonic City last time before it went down. Could the site be re-launching again at long last or could this be something else?

Here’s an interesting message from AAUK in comment 5 of this blog entry –

Awww. I bet we’ll have to wait for another week.
AAUK Sez: Who knows how long… but the fact is it is coming and coming along fast. Assuming it is what you think it is!

Link

Discuss and place your guesses over in the SSMB topic.

Black Knight Art Competition Update

Firstly, Sega Europe have captured ArchangelUK and dragged him back to Sega Europe’s London HQ and we at TSS welcome him back with open arms (and hands, where’s our presents? lol). Seriously though, welcome back to Mr.AAUK, we hope you enjoyed your trip.

To the headline in question, AAUK has updated the Sonic City Blognik with some updates regarding the Sonic and the Black Knight art competition.

Q: Can I enter? I live in (Country).
A: Because of the way the Terms & Conditions had to be it wasn’t really possible to have EVERY country listed and have individual terms for them. So please take whatever the terms and conditions for whatever language you can read and simply assume any instance of (country name) being your country.

So basically if you live in *deep breath* Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Cyprus, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, the Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, the United Kingdom which are the formally recognised European Union members as well as Australia (which comes under SEGA Europe bizarrely), Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway, Switzerland, Andorra, Liechtenstein, Monaco, San Marino, and should His Holiness wish to enter even Vatican City.

You will need to send your entry to the same place as everyone else! PLEASE check out the Sonic & The Black Knight page for details of this and the information you need to include as this is vital. The deadline is still September 19th at this time so you will need to hurry.

Q: Why does the US version of the site say you can include more characters?
A: I have absolutely no idea. I suspect it just wasn’t updated. For the record you can draw Sonic, Knuckles, Tails, Amy, Shadow, Blaze and other characters (or any combination of one or more of them together) in your favorite scene from your favorite Sonic game. They must be Sonic characters, no fan characters or other series – showing Sonic punching Master Chief in the face might be fun, but won’t get in the game.

So, with all queries, problems and issues laid to rest, get those pictures in, you have but 4 days European arteests.

Sonic City Blognik update

European Sonic and the Black Knight art contest site up

ArchangelUK over at the Sonic City Blognik and Martin The Fat Ninja at the Sega Europe blogs have updated with news regarding the Sonic and the Black Knight art contest that went live in the U.S. last week. The European site is now up and taking entries and it looks like every region will be getting it’s top piece of art in Sonic and the Black Knight’s Special Book. You can’t say fairer than that.

European’s can check out the rules and details for submitting your art at the contest’s site here.

U.S. site is here; ArchangelUK’s Sonic City Blog is here; Martin’s blog is here

AAUK clears up Sonic Chronicles EU release date confusion

Kevin/ArchangelUK of Sonic Wrecks/Sega Europe’s community team has updated the Sonic City Blognik and has cleared up the confusion surrounding the European Sonic Chronicles release date. AAUK confirms that the game will be released 26th September as originally planned. So, I guess we’re going to have to wait, which by looking at how the game is shaping up will definitely be worth it.

AAUK also informs in the new update that he is off on holiday until mid-september “Because I thumping well deserve it!”, which we’ve got to admit he does. From everyone at TSS/SSMB – “Have a great break, enjoy yourself and take care mate!”

Link