New footage seen from Summer Game Fest appears to confirm that Sky Sanctuary will feature as one of the Cyberspace stages in Sonic Frontiers.
New images from the show, shared by Saihati72 on twitter, appear to confirm the Sonic & Knuckles stage, revisited in Sonic Generations, through the presence of the ascending Death Egg in the background.
While the zoomed-in footage is of low resolution, the image of the Death Egg is now undeniable.
Fans have been quick to point out previously that there are many similarities to the Generations design, to the point that it appears Frontiers may be using recycled assets from the 11 year-old title.
UPDATE: Another Twitter user has shared a second video that displays the stage a little clearer in the background. Thanks to ‘JL’ via email for the news tip!
For as polished as Sonic Unleashed’s graphics are, its biggest visual flaw is its framerate. The Xbox 360 version played at a mostly steady 24-30 (capped) FPS, while the PS3 version was worse for wear despite an uncapped framerate that would bring the game up to 48FPS on occasion, but dropping to 24FPS or below ruining the flow of the game.
In many ways, the game’s graphic-intensive “Hedgehog Engine” was a bit too ahead of its time. It couldn’t keep a steady 30 FPS on the most powerful system of that era. It would take 2011’s Sonic Generations to iron the kinks out. While the Werehog levels weren’t affected too much by the framerate, several daytime Sonic levels dropped frames horribly. Jungle Joyride became a slideshow at times. Now, in 2022, Sonic Unleashed’s full potential has been unlocked thanks to the Boost Mode on the Xbox Series S/X, bringing the game to a steady 60 FPS.
To me, this brought the game from a guilty pleasure to a legitimately good Sonic title. Sonic’s daytime levels run as smooth as silk, giving you better handling and control. Even the Werehog levels feel less cumbersome as Sonic now feels faster and more responsive. There seems to be less blur as well. The high framerate allows for a faster response time. I can honestly say I was actually enjoying the Werehog levels for a change.
That doesn’t mean the game’s old flaws aren’t still present. Medal collecting near the end game is still soul-crushing, the Werehog levels are still a bit too long, and having the camera suddenly change position when you’re balancing across a steel beam is still as irritating as ever. That said, if you love this style of Sonic gameplay, it’s never looked or played better than it does on Series S/X.
The Series S/X boost mode also improves other Sonic titles as well. Sonic & Sega All-Stars Racing Transformed gets a 60 FPS boost, and Sonic Generations runs at both 4K resolution and 60FPS.
To see Sonic Unleashed in action on the Series S/X, check out our gameplay video below.
With the first wave of Steam Deck units shipping less than a week from now, it’s a good time to look at what Valve has given the confident thumbs up, the shaky sideways thumb, and the sad thumbs down. Steam has introduced a new page to check your library’s compatibility, so if you’ve got one on order (or plan on getting one), go check it out.
A trio of classic Xbox 360 Sonic the Hedgehog titles – Sonic Generations, Sonic Unleashed and Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed – will be enhanced on next-generation Xbox consoles thanks to the consoles’ ‘FPS Boost’ feature. The updates will take effect on all three games today.
You know what Sonic Generations had a severe lack of? Proper DLC levels. Thankfully, it’s a Sonic game, so the fan base has provided with loads of mods over the years. Shivery Mountainside by Goalringmod27 is among the latest of these, and I’ve got to say: it’s a fun, fascinating experience…if you’re looking for a challenge that can at times be a little unfair, but also do things regular Generations levels never did.
Shivery Mountainside starts in a cozy log cabin, which acts as a small hub area where players can buy upgrades and lives before setting off on their run down the mountain. It’s here that you’ll notice the start of a trend: the hub is in full 3D. The whole mod is in 3D, in fact. This alone does a lot to set this level apart from Sonic’s official boosting stages.
The demo starts out with a brief, exciting snowboarding section. After Sonic bursts out of his cabin on a snowboard, the player must then boost through hordes of enemies while navigating the mountain’s snowy slopes. There are two paths to take here, as well as some rings for more skilled players to jump through, to get them to grinding paths on top of some cabins. It’s not long before Sonic reaches the town at the foot of the mountain, where he ditches the snowboard and starts running on foot. And it’s here where the fun, and brief bouts of frustration, begin.
Shivery Mountainside’s level design is tailored around the idea of encouraging new and unorthodox utilization of Generations’ physics. Sometimes, to cross a pit, you need to hit the boost button at exactly the right moment to send yourself flying into a set of rings to your next platform. On other occasions, you’ll need to interrupt your momentum with a stomp in order to reach a ring or boost pad. This sort of thinking isn’t always necessary, and sometimes its possible to clear a gap through some other means, like attacking enemies.
It’s pretty cool playing a level like this in Generations, but I must admit it can also lead to…frustrations. One inherent issue in this sort of design is that the level can just be really difficult. When those mid-air boosts become required to survive a pit, messing up their timing results in instant death. 3D platforming was also never Generations’ strong suit, as it can be a bit slippery, so having to navigate a level full of areas like this will inevitably result in a lot of falling into pits. It took me hours of trial and error to fully figure these areas out, and I still mess them up on occasion. This is not the Sonic Generations you’re used to: it does not allow for much margin of error.
All that said, while the level can be quite challenging, that challenge is, for the most part, quite fair, and makes mastering this level exhilarating. It is only when you reach the ice caverns that the design becomes a little…mean. After navigating a series of narrow ice platforms, you reach a cavern full of red ice. While gorgeous, I found this area very hard to navigate effectively. The lower water path, which was the first one I took, was very confusing to navigate. Even with the big arrows made out of golden rings, I simply found the area unnavigable because, between the red ice pillars and the water, there was no clear path through to an exit. So I simply died repeatedly. I eventually managed to make my way through the area by taking one of its other, optional paths above the water. I did eventually beat the area on the lower path, but I’m still not entirely sure how I did it.
Right after this is the second worse area of the level: a curved ice path, with no guardrails, over a bottomless pit, that leads directly to a wall-running section with bombs that are impossible to dodge, at least with my human reflexes. I eventually managed to get past this part by slow walking on the path, and then activating a new power up introduced in this mod, “time break.” This slows down time, which allowed me to avoid the bombs, and finally beat the cavern section of the level. While these areas are quite beatable, especially after some trial and error, I do hope they are redesigned somewhat. Nothing breaks a Sonic level’s flow more effectively than having to worry about getting confused by the level itself, or having to slow walk on a path to avoid falling off. I do think this goes a little beyond the sort of challenge one should expect from a Sonic boost level.
All of these criticisms aside, Shivery Mountainside truly is a standout Generations mod. Its got great visuals and a superb music track that’s still stuck in my head. It’s only six minutes long, but I’ve already spent hours on it, trying to perfect all the tricks and find all the shortcuts. Even in my latest playthrough, which I did while I was writing this, I managed to reach some extra lives by boosting through rings that I hadn’t been able to get through before. If you’re hungry for a new Sonic boost level, check this out!
You can download the mod here. For instructions on how to implement hacks, check out Sonic Hacking Contest’s website here.
An official press release from SEGA has revealed that the team behind Sonic Forces and Sonic Generations are working on the officially untitled (but also totally caled Sonic Rangers) game due for release in 2022.
In a tidbit missed by many, Noisy Pixel picked up the factoid, confirming that the long-serving team will be making their return in the first major installment of a Sonic title in the 2020’s.
While this new information doesn’t bring to light any further detail regarding the new title, it does reinforce that this game is set to be the next major title in the Sonic series.
Stay tuned for more Sonic 2022 / Sonic Rangers news!
If you thought that the lack of a new Sonic game (or news one) has dented the popularity of SEGA’s long-running franchise, prepare to be pleasantly surprised. In SEGA Sammy’s latest financial call, the company revealed that the Sonic the Hedgehog series remains the best-selling of all of the publisher’s titles.
How did we all miss this one!? We now know that a port of Sonic Generations, intended for Sony’s PSP handheld, was once in active development – thanks to a long-undiscovered Facebook post from a video game preservation group that claims to have a debug build of the game.
It’s the most wonderful time of the year! No, we don’t mean Christmas – pfft! – but instead Next-Gen Console Day! This month sees the launch of two new platforms in the Xbox and PlayStation family of gaming systems, and we couldn’t be more excited about both. Today, Microsoft formally releases the Xbox Series X and S, and with backwards compatibility a major factor we decided to dig into the archives and check which Sonic the Hedgehog titles you can play from Day One.
What’s that? You want Sonic the Hedgehog news, sonny? Well, it just so happens that we’ve got a whole LIBRARY’S worth of news stories and features covering the last twenty years! We could tell you when Archie Sonic #117 hit comic store shelves… or we could tell you something interesting instead. How about the biggest Sonic stories to hit the internet since The Sonic Stadium opened its doors in 2000?
Recently, Sony announced that it was making big changes to its PlayStation Store. From Monday 19 October, you will no longer be able to purchase PS3, PSP or PS Vita games from a desktop web browser, and from 28 October on mobile browser. This may have an impact on your ability to buy and download a range of Sonic games, so consider this a Public Service Announcement.
Remember Sonic’s birthday party in Sonic Generations? His friends gifted him some chili-dogs with a bow on them. Even after Sonic’s time-traveling adventure ended, they were still warm. Well, SEGA’s ready to tell you how you can make these chili-dogs too!
Good things come in pairs, and following the Sonic sale on the U.S. Nintendo eShop, Microsoft joins in with intense 50% discounts on ten more Sonic games for multiple Xbox Marketplace regions, most of which aren’t part of the Nintendo sale. As a reminder, all these games are playable on the Xbox One, and will likely be playable on the Series X in the near future.
Prices in USD/GBP respectively.
Sonic the Hedgehog (Genesis) – $2.49/£1.69
Sonic the Hedgehog 2 (Genesis) – $2.49/£1.69
Sonic CD – $2.49/£1.69
Sonic the Fighters – $2.49/£1.69
Sonic Adventure – $2.49/£1.69
Sonic Adventure 2 – $4.99/£3.37
Sonic the Hedgehog 4 Episode I – $4.99/£3.37
Sonic the Hedgehog 4 Episode II – $7.49/£4.99
Sonic Unleashed – $7.49/£5.99
Sonic Generations – $9.99/£7.49
If you’re looking to complete your Sonic collection on 3DS or Switch, Sega has you covered.
From May 17th to the 26th, a huge library of Sonic games are on sale on the Nintendo eShop. The games include the following…
Mario and Sonic at the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 – $39.99
Sonic Forces – $9.99
Sonic Mania (Standard) – $9.99
Team Sonic Racing – $19.99
SEGA AGES Sonic the Hedgehog – $5.99
SEGA AGES Sonic the Hedgehog 2 – $5.99
Sonic Generations – $9.99
Sonic Lost World – $9.99
Sonic Boom: Shattered Crystal – $9.99
Sonic Boom: Fire and Ice – $9.99
3D Sonic the Hedgehog – $2.99
3D Sonic the Hedgehog 2 – $2.99
To celebrate the release of the Sonic movie, both Steam and Humble Bundle are offering Sonic games at a steep discount through the next week.
Steam is offering a “Sonic the Hedgehog Ultimate Bundle” an over $250 value, at less than $60, or 76 percent off. The bundle includes the following games:
Sonic & SEGA All-Stars Racing
Sonic 3D Blast
Dr. Robotnik’s Mean Bean Machine
Sonic the Hedgehog
Sonic the Hedgehog 2
Sonic 3 & Knuckles
Sonic the Hedgehog 4: Episode I
Sonic the Hedgehog 4: Episode II
Sonic Adventure 2 (plus Battle DLC)
Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed
Sonic Lost World
Sonic Generations with Casino Night DLC
Sonic Mania with Encore DLC
Team Sonic Racing
Well, that was a decade and a half wasn’t it? So much has changed in the last ten years, it’s difficult to wrap it all up in a very succinct way. But don’t worry, The Sonic Stadium is here to help you remember. Let us take your hand and chuck you down this hellish warp zone we call a Retrospective, and blitz past all the crazy stuff that’s happened since 2010. Continue reading Sonic Decade in Review 2010 – 2019: The Games
Whether you’re feeling charitable this holiday season, or just want a bunch of Sonic games for super cheap, Humble Bundle has an offer for Sonic fans: the Humble Sonic Bundle. The money given to this bundle will go to Extra Life, Save the Children, the Willow Foundation, and Access Sport. Alternatively, your money can also be given to any charity in Humble Bundle’s database.
Anyone who’s able to give at least $1 to charity will receive the following games on Windows through Steam:
Sonic & SEGA All-Stars Racing
Sonic Adventure DX
Sonic Adventure 2 (with Battle DLC)
Sonic the Hedgehog 4: Episode 1
For those who have a little more to spend, the following games can be had for the current donation average of $7.20:
Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed Collection
Sonic Lost World
Sonic Generation Collection
Sonic the Hedgehog 4: Episode 2
And finally, for anyone who wants to more than double their donation to $15, they can get the latest games, including:
The bundle will be available from now until the end of the year. You can check it out here.
When I first heard about the Smach Z (initially revealed as the Steam Boy) back in 2014, I knew it was something I wanted. In addition to being a Sonic fan, I’m also a big portable gamer, so a console that could allow me to take some of my favorite Sonic games (and some other titles like NiGHTS and Witcher 3) on the go for the first time immediately caught my interest. Unfortunately, the reality has been a bit more complicated than what the initial pitch promised. Continue reading Impressions: Sonic Generations on the Smach Z portable PC console
I’ve heard of “timed exclusivity,” but seven years is a little overkill, isn’t it? Ah well, better late than never!
Sonic Generationsfinally hit Xbox One backward compatibility last week—with the added bonus of Xbox One X enhancements—and now it seems fans who hadn’t preordered the game on Xbox 360 seven years ago (or who don’t own it on Steam) can finally enjoy the complete experience at no additional charge.
Microsoft held their second episode of Inside Xbox yesterday, in which they share a behind-the-scenes look at the company’s inner workings, and today’s livestream held a special announcement regarding backward compatibility on Xbox One.
The gaming giant revealed that a handful of backward compatible Xbox 360 games will become Xbox One X-enhanced, a beefy update through which last-gen titles receive a substantial performance boost on the most powerful home console on the market, after the presentation. Among them is none other than Sonic Generations, which also means that the 20th anniversary title celebrating Sonic’s history has also been finally retrofitted for the Xbox One family of systems as of today!
Episode 2 of Inside Xbox also revealed a ton of new original Xbox games being added to the backward compatible library, including SEGA’s own Panzer Dragoon Orta.
Among the bevy of VGM cover artists I follow on the web, one standout artist in particular shines with his rock/metal arrangements of classic gaming themes in the form of “GaMetal.”
Week by week, Jonny Atma wows the scene with all sorts of fantastic VGM covers featuring his trademark solos, covering nearly every song under the sun from the popular to the obscure, and fan-favourites from the Sonic series is no exception. While he has covered a handful of tracks from the franchise in the past, Atma wrapped up the month of February with not just one, but two remixes of some of the best boss tracks Sonic the Hedgehog has to offer.
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
My Nintendo have announced today a tie-in promotion to celebrate the Sonic Forces’ release on Switch. The promotion comes with 50% off offers (that cost gold or platinum coins) on most Sonic titles on Wii U and 3DS, plus a couple of bonuses.
Anyone who’s ever wanted to own every Sonic game on Steam is in luck today: from now until 1 p.m. EST/6 p.m. BST tomorrow, every Sonic game on the service will be on sale for 75 percent off.
For those of you who have never bought a Sonic game on the service before, Steam has an even better deal for you: a bundle that not only includes Dr. Robotnik’s Mean Bean Machine, but also gives you Sonic Generations and its Casino Nights DLC completely free.
The Sonic Games Collection Steam bundle is currently going $28.24/£19.49. The Collection usually goes for $112.99/£77.99. You can check out the bundle and individual games here.
Crisis City was once a shining and prosperous metropolis before Iblis was unleashed upon the world, and the immortal Flames of Disaster turned the city to ruin and brought all life in the world to its knees. The apocalyptic city appropriately set the tone for the rest of the plot in Sonic ’06, and not even it being wiped from canonical existence prevented its return in Sonic Generations five years later.
For today’s Mash-Up Monday, we take another look at the music of Crisis City across its ’06 and Generations incarnations, all composed and arranged by Tomoya Ohtani. YouTuber Aeon Eric already mashed the original, Classic, and Modern themes up together in the past, but a remastered edition was produced not long after. As a bonus, keener listeners might pick up on a Kingdom Hearts-related surprise towards the end of this mashup.
This past Thursday, Sega released 4 new Sonic themes for the 3DS Theme Shop in NA. One of the which, the 25th Anniversary theme, is free to download! The other three can be bought individually for $2 USD each (sadly I can’t find the CDN prices) or in a 3-theme bundle for $4.99 USD or $6.49 CDN.
The 4 themes with their names and songs are:
Sonic series: 25th Anniversary (Music: Sonic Heroes “System Screen: Team Select”)
Sonic series: Sonic Style (Music: Sonic Generations: “System Screen: Option Menu”)
Sonic series: Classic Style (Music: Sonic the Hedgehog 3: “System Screen: Character Select”)
Sonic series: Boom Style (Music: Sonic Boom: “Main Theme”)
Today in this week’s NA Nintendo Downloads PR, it was announced that various Sonic games are on sale on the NA eShop on both Wii U and 3DS, and there’s quite a few games to choose from. You can view the entire list below.
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