Morio Kishimoto is Directing Sonic Forces, No Boom Sonic, Will Be At E3

The director behind Sonic Colors and Sonic Lost World will be taking the helm once more for Sonic Forces, it has been revealed – and if you were hoping for that ‘third playable character’ to be Boom-universe Sonic, prepare to be disappointed. Continue reading Morio Kishimoto is Directing Sonic Forces, No Boom Sonic, Will Be At E3

HQ Gameplay Video and Screenshots of Sonic Forces Released

As promised, Sega have uploaded the HQ gameplay of Modern Sonic that was shown last night at SXSW onto YouTube for all to see. Also we have two high-quality screenshots straight from Sega to share as well!

Continue reading HQ Gameplay Video and Screenshots of Sonic Forces Released

Shun Nakamura is The Producer On Sonic Forces

If Sonic Forces is leaving you with a bit of a Sonic ’06 vibe, what with it’s burning, apocalyptic cities and all, it shouldn’t surprise you. After all, the producer of Sonic Forces is none other than Shun Nakamura, the director on Sonic ’06 as well as Samba De Amigo, Billy Hatcher and The Giant Egg and the well-reviewed, but often overlooked, Rhythm Thief & The Emperor’s Treasure. Nakamura himself posted his involvement on his Twitter account.

This news comes just shortly after the game’s title reveal as well as the announcement that Tomoya Ohtani will be composing the game’s music. An official gameplay reveal video is expected to arrive sometime tomorrow.

Sonic Forces is due on Nintendo Switch, PS4 and Xbox One this holiday season.

SEGA: Project Sonic 2017 Will Introduce a New Character and a New Gameplay “Component”

SEGA held a livestream event to celebrate the recent launch of Sonic Boom: Fire & Ice in Japan, with series director Takashi Iizuka in attendance among others playing the latest Boom instalment and the upcoming Sonic Mania. However, a pair of bombshells has dropped since the event, this time concerning the far-flung Project Sonic 2017 launching next holiday season.

With translations provided by Source Gaming’s PushDustIn, it is confirmed that SEGA has plans to reveal “a completely new character in Project 2017.” We also now have a better idea of the gameplay, which is expected to follow the formula established in Sonic Generations with classic 2D and modern 3D levels – however, a “brand new component” is also going to be introduced.

Continue reading SEGA: Project Sonic 2017 Will Introduce a New Character and a New Gameplay “Component”

UPDATE: Sonic CD Becomes Free-to-Play on iOS, Forces Users to Pay to Remove Ads

UPDATE: SEGA has reached out to us with their statement on the error, telling us that the issue has been resolved!

As part of a special promotion, Sonic CD is now free with ads (regularly priced at $2.99) from the App Store. For players who previously purchased Sonic CD, ads were mistakenly added to their game. This was not intended and the issue has now been resolved. Players will need to update to the latest version of Sonic CD (2.0.1) on the App Store. We apologize for the error.

Original story continues below.

Continue reading UPDATE: Sonic CD Becomes Free-to-Play on iOS, Forces Users to Pay to Remove Ads

HoL’s Musings: Sonic’s Future and Potential on the Nintendo Switch

What seemed to be an eternity of waiting since its announcement on March 17th, 2015 has finally passed on October 20th, 2016, as Nintendo had at long last lifted the curtain on the “NX,” or should I say the Nintendo Switch. Even before that day, Sega officially announced that Sonic would indeed be making an appearance on the system. It won’t be just any game, but the even longer-awaited next main game from Sonic Team called Project Sonic 2017provided the Switch version is the same as the PS4/XBO/PC versions. Continue reading HoL’s Musings: Sonic’s Future and Potential on the Nintendo Switch

Scrapped Sonic and the Black Knight Poster Found

Sonic & the Black Knight promo poster

The Sonic Stadium has uncovered what appears to be an unused promotional poster for Wii exclusive Sonic and the Black Knight. The poster was created by a company called KJSCoverArt who have designed a lot of album covers for various artists, as seen on their portfolio. We assume this image must have been made pretty early on because you’ll notice Sonic is wearing two of the same gauntlet he wears in the game instead of just one, as well as a helmet, which looks much like Shadow/Lancelot’s. Other changes include slight differences in Caliburn’s hilt and the game’s logo.

What do you think of this artwork? Would you have preferred Sonic to have worn more armour? Speak out in the comments.

Source: KJSCoverArt

Sonic Runners getting worldwide release on June 25

Sonic Runners, Sonic Team’s first mobile Sonic game, will finally be debuting worldwide on June 25. Just in time for Sonic’s 24th birthday!

This was revealed minutes ago on the official Sonic Runners twitter account. The tweet promises more details in the coming days. Sonic fans have been waiting for a worldwide release of the game since its limited release in Canada and Japan back in February.

Sonic Runners, as the name suggests, is a free-to-play endless running game, where the player tries to get as far as possible before dying. The game will be launching on both iOS and Android.

Sonic Runners out now on Android… sort of (Update: And iOS)

runners-keyart

Update: It’s also seemingly out now on iOS.

Well isn’t this a surprise. Sonic Runners is actually out now on Google Play in NA (actually was dated for yesterday on February 25th, 2015). However, some phones don’t seem to be supported (my Samsung Galaxy Ace II x GT-S7560M seems incompatible).  And some who have got it to download have gotten this error message of maintenance:

B-vkz57VEAABAbw

The Google Play page has this info:

Play Sonic, the world’s fastest hedgehog, in the all-new side-scrolling endless runner. With all-new mobile friendly controls, just tap the screen to run, jump, and spin your way across lightening fast Sonic world.FEATURESTRUE SIDE-SCROLLING SONIC ACTION
– Run and spin at lightening speeds with mobile friendly controls
– Designed by TEAM SONIC, the original Sonic development team
– Super fast and challenging levels with loop-de-loops, retro design, hidden rings, and classic enemies
– Unleash Color Powers: LASER POWER for hi-speed movements, ASTERIOD POWER for destroying obstacles, and DRILLS Power for burrowing undergroundPLAY AS SONIC AND HIS FRIENDS
– Unlock Tails and Knuckles as player characters
– Master their Speed, Aerial, and Power attributes
– Evolve your character’s powers with collected ringsRUN WITH COMPANIONS
– Run with the power of Companions
– Complete stages and enhance your character’s abilities
– Select the best Companion for the job depending on your character and the levelCOMPETE IN ALL-NEW RANKING BATTLES
– Reign in four ranking categories: Rival League, Friend, World, and Historical
– Fight against your friends and the world for the “Sonic Record”
– Compete with up to 50 players in a white-heat competition in the Rival League
– Win the top of the “”S league”” to claim the supreme honor!

COMPETE AGAINST FRIENDS
– Log into Facebook to activate the Friend Invitation and Friend Ranking features

□■What’s New■□
[Facebook account] will keep you updated on the app! Some info may only be available on Facebook!!

□■App Price■□
Free *IAPs available

□■Recommended Devices■□
Android OS2.3 or later *excluding certain devices
—-
We want Sonic Runners to be played by as many people as people,
so we’re planning on increasing the amount of supported devices.
We apologize if you cannot download Sonic Runners on your current device.
Please wait for further announcements.
—-

We’ll update you guys as more info comes!

Tomoya Ohtani is composing music for Sonic Runners

runners-keyart

Sonic Runners’ music has Unleashed its inner Colors.

Ahem. Tomoya Ohtani, who most know as the main composer of Sonic Unleashed and Sonic Colors, confirmed on twitter that he will be composing for the game. Now does that mean he is again the main composer remains to be seen.

Thanks to TimmiT at NeoGAF for the heads up!

Sonic Lost World now at 710,000 copies shipped worldwide as of March 31st, 2014

Sonic Lost World LogoIt’s that time again, sales talk! Sega just put out their newest sales data covering data as of March 31st, 2014. Last time I reported their data release as of December 31st, 2013, which you can look at here!

So now we have an updated look at the Blue Blur’s recent performance since then, where as the game had shipped a combined total of 640,000 as of Dec 31st, now has reached 710,000 copies as of March 31st, so that means in the three month span it has added 70,000 copies.

I should take the opportunity to remind people that Sonic games do horrendously in Japan (why this is so is unclear to me, I find it surprising), with games commonly doing only a few thousand in the opening week and are likely never seen again in the charts, with some rare exceptions. And this is no matter the platform, be it Wii U, 3DS, Wii, DS, PS3, 360, you name it!

Proof as shown here at NeoGAF in the first week of sales for Sonic Lost World via Media Create and Famitsu, with only the 3DS version (the leading 8th gen platform in Japan) barely crossing the 5,000 mark, which is very poor for any game. The Wii U version just barely missed the Top 30 where the 30th and above at Famitsu’s chart would show numbers, Media Create only shows numbers for the Top 20.

So Japanese sales barely factor at all into the total. So keep that in mind.

Also, Sega shows a interestingly high amount of 3DS SKUs are on the way, the problem being is that these forecast charts are VERY difficult to decipher, it’s not certain if they do indeed count every regional release as their own SKU, or if they count releases by subsidiaries like Atlus (who have Persona Q: Shadows of the Labyrinth on the way for 3DS and the long silent 3DS version of Devil Survivor 2 titled Devil Survivor 2: Break Record). Right now Sega’s known retail line-up is a bit sparse on 3DS, so far we only know of Sonic Boom for 3DS which is only scheduled for release in North America and Europe. It’s said that the charts do not include digital releases so that leaves out games like their Virtual Console offerings as well as 3D Classics like the recent Out Run 3D.

So who knows what’s in store. What are you hoping is on the way to 3DS from Sega?

Thanks go to Nintendolife for the write-up!

Sonic Lost World Playable at Tokyo Game Show 2013

28289TropicalCoast_Zone3_130801_12

SEGA Japan has announced their plans for the upcoming Tokyo Game Show that will be held September 19th-22nd and Sonic Lost World will be among the games playable at the event on both its Wii U and Nintendo 3DS platforms. On September 21st Sonic Team head Takashi Iizuka and sound director Tomoya Ohtani will be delivering a presentation titled (in Google translate) “Introducing the charm of “Sonic Lost World” The latest series! ” The presentation is scheduled from 11:00 to 11:45 JST, which translates to 03:00-03:45 BST the same morning for us in the UK.

Saturday 21st September
11:00 to 11:45
Introducing the charm of “Sonic Lost World” The latest series!
[Speakers] Takashi Iizuka (Producer), Tomoya Ohtani (sound director)

SEGA will also be giving away the below Sonic fan and Sonic Lost World sticker sheets. A mug featuring Sonic in his Sketchog form will also be available to buy for 1,500 yen.

Source: Gamer.ne.jp (via Gematsu)

Sonic Team to do Internet Live Stream, February 2nd/3rd

livestream

On February 3rd 2013, Japanese online TV show Puyo-Puyo will be hosting a live stream event. Their guests? Sonic Team. The staff members joining the Puyo-Puyo team are as follows.

Tadashi Takezaki/SEGA
Takashi Iizuka/Producer
Jun Senoue/Sound Director
Kazuyuki Hoshino/Art Director

It might not be related. But… February 3rd is a day after Groundhog day, a day which Sega have unofficially called ‘Hedgehog Day’ due to their tradition with making big announcements either on or around it. Could it be?

Continue reading Sonic Team to do Internet Live Stream, February 2nd/3rd

Sonic Adventure 2 Avatar Items Coming to Xbox Live June 5th

Xbox Live’s Major Nelson has just posted the latest Xbox Live Marketplace release schedule detailing all games and other items being released over the next couple of weeks. Among them are Sonic Adventure 2 Avatar items planned to be released June 5th, which, conveniently, is when E3 begins. Could SEGA be planning to unveil an Xbox Live Arcade port of Sonic Adventure 2 soon?

The Dreamcast classic was featured in a leaked list of XBLA games back in early April, and as you may recall, that list outed Harmonix’s Rock Band Blitz game before it was announced.

We’ll keep our eyes open for any further developments.

Source: Xbox Live’s Major Nelson’s Blog

Thanks to kmurphy91 on Twitter for the heads up!

Sonic CD Developer Diary Video

Sonic CD – Developer Diary

SEGA has just posted the above Sonic CD developer diary video on their blog. In the video Sonic Team Art Director Kazuyuki Hoshino gives an insight into the creation of Sonic CD‘s logo, characters, enemies, bosses and stages. It’s an interesting watch, and even features some never-before-seen concept sketches.

Source: SEGA Blog

Thanks to StrickerX-mas at the SSMB for the heads up!

Iizuka: “We Will Probably See Sonic Going into Other Genres of Games”

In an interview with GameReactor.eu, Sonic Team head Takashi Iizuka talks about where we might see the Sonic franchise go in the future. When asked how he sees the next 20 years for Sonic, Iizuka explains that while Sonic Team will keep a focus on Sonic action titles, they would also like Sonic to reach out to a wider audience. To achieve this, Iizuka says “We will probably see Sonic going into other genres of games and also seeing Sonic in different media.”

Source: GameReactor.eu

What genres and media would you like to see the Sonic franchise explore? Let us know in the comments.

Iizuka: “I would like to make a new standard Sonic”

In an interview with Gamasutra, Sonic Team head Takashi Iizuka has explained that he would like to make a new standard Sonic in 2012 and the years ahead. Rather than continue on with the formula built with Sonic Generations, it appears Iizuka would like to develop something fresh in the future.

It seems that as far as current-gen Sonic goes, there have been false starts. The PlayStation 3 Sonic, the first one, was supposed to be a new beginning, and then there was Unleashed, which had good and bad about it. It seems like Generations is yet again starting over; are we at a point where you feel comfortable with the mark you’re making and can move forward?

I wouldn’t say that I think Generations is a new start. Instead, it’s more of the peaks of the past 20 years, is the way we’re approaching this. Generations is about taking the past 20 years of history and rolling it into one really fun product. I think, as a result, I would like to make a new standard Sonic, a modern Sonic if you will, in 2012 and beyond.

You can read the full interview over at Gamasutra.

Would you like to see fresh new Sonic experiences in the future? Share your thoughts in the comments section below.

Thanks to RUSSTYBONE and interface for the heads up!

Sonic Generations: Modern Rooftop Run and Hub Videos

As we reported October 19th, SEGA France and Sonic team head Takashi Iizuka held their Sonic Generations presentation at the Paris Games Week yesterday morning, and thanks to attendee funkyjeremi83 we have video footage of it. The “new” stage shown was Rooftop Run, which had previously only been shown in screenshot form.

As you can see in the video, Rooftop Run has changed greatly compared to its Sonic Unleashed counterpart. The stage has been given a big facelift in presentation and because it’s one of the last stages in Sonic Generations, the difficulty has been increased.

The full 9 stage hub world was also shown at the presentation, and again thanks to funkyjeremi83, you can see footage of that, too.

Thanks to Guito, dbgtsonicx and SSMB member Ryan91 for the heads up!

GameSpot Interviews Sonic Team About Sonic Generations

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cEABevfCKlI&feature=feedu

Gaming news site GameSpot has posted up the above video interview with Sonic Generations producer Takashi Iizuka, director Hiroshi Miyamoto and sound director Jun Senoue. The 4 minutes and 52 seconds long interview covers topics such as level selection, music and the set-up for the game’s story.

Source: GameSpot

Thanks to Graham for the news tip and to Woun for the YouTube upload!

Got a news tip? Send it in to thesonicstadium@googlemail.com, shadzter@sonicstadium.org or via Twitter at @Shadzter and we’ll credit you for the find.

Takashi Iizuka Talks About The Past and Future of Sonic

In an interview posted today at Pocket Gamer, Sonic Team head Takashi Iizuka has explained why he thinks Sonic games haven’t fared too well with critics over the last several years. Iizuka says that over time Sonic’s various titles have been shared out across different teams, where each one has their own ideas of what makes a Sonic game. This is now changing, as Iizuka is taking full responsibility and control over all Sonic games going forward and hopes this will improve things.

So originally it was more or less the same team working on all the different Sonic titles, but after a few years, for various reasons, we started to delegate Sonic games to different groups of people.

And everyone in the office has their own idea of what Sonic should be, so we started to see slightly varied, slightly different directions of Sonic games.

I was conscious of this, so I’m now back with full responsibility of all things Sonic. I have control over the direction of not just Sonic Generations, but all the Sonic titles that we will develop in the future.

So I have more control, and hopefully this will provide better appearances for future titles.

When asked about what’s next for Sonic, Iizuka says we can expect more Sonic titles after Sonic Generations. As well as Sonic the Hedgehog 4: Episode 2 in the digital download space, there is going to be “a whole new adventure, of course.”

Sonic Generations sort of acts as the end of one period. After Sonic Generations, we will work on new Sonic titles. There’s going to be a whole new adventure, of course.

For the digital and mobile space, we have Sonic 4 – Episode 1 is already out, and we’ve already started creating Episode 2.

We’re going to continue to explore the reimaginationing of classic Sonic, but at the same time we will also keep looking into the gaming space around modern Sonic games.

To read the full interview, which includes information you may or may not already know about the 3DS version of Sonic Generations, head over to Pocket Gamer.

Takashi Iizuka Attending Gamescom 2011

There’s good news tonight for Sonic fans going to this year’s Gamescom event, with the announcement that Takashi Iizuka will be attending. The Sonic Team head disclosed the news of his attendance just 4 hours ago on his Facebook page with the short message you see below.

これからGamescomに参加するため、ドイツに向けて出発し​ます!それにしても今、朝の6時…眠い…。
I’m going to Germany for Gamescom!

Iizuka has been very busy attending events around the world all year celebrating Sonic the Hedgehog’s 20th Anniversary and it doesn’t look like he’s going to stop anytime soon. We told you last week that SEGA will be going to Gamescom and will be designing their booth in the style of Green Hill Zone from the first Sonic the Hedgehog game on Mega Drive/Genesis. Attendees will be able to go hands-on with both console and handheld versions of Sonic Generations and Mario & Sonic at the London 2012 Olympic Games at the event, too.

Now we have to wonder if Iizuka is attending just to help SEGA with the Sonic 20th Anniversary celebrations and to do the usual interview rounds, or does he have some Sonic announcements to make? I guess we’ll find out this week.

Gamescom will run from 17th-21st August at the Koelnmesse in Cologne, Germany.

Source: Takashi Iizuka’s Facebook page

ONM’s Full Fan Interview With Takashi Iizuka

Following August 5th’s portion of an ONM interview with Sonic Team head Takashi Iizuksa regarding pleasing fans of the older Sonic titles, the magazine has posted up the full interview on their website. The interview is made up of questions from fans about the Nintendo 3DS version of Sonic Generations, but as is the norm so far for the portable edition, there are not really any new details about the game to share that we haven’t known for a while now. Outside of that, Takashi Iizuka expressed an interest in making titles for Nintendo’s new home console Wii U.

You can read the interview at ONM’s website.

Would you like to see a new Sonic game on Wii U? Let us know in the comments.

Old Sonic Fans ‘hard to please’ Says Iizuka

In a portion of a soon to be published interview with ONM, Sonic Team head Takashi Iizuka has expressed difficulty to please old Sonic fans when creating new Sonic titles. Iizuka says the team are always making efforts to build new gameplay innovations, but they then find it hard to please the fans who prefer the gameplay found in the older games. With Sonic Generations, Iizuka thinks classic fans will find some enjoyment, though, and he says Sonic Team is looking into continuing the Sonic 4 series, too.

Check out the interview quotes below:

“Our team are always trying to present new gameplay innovations so it’s hard to please fans who like the gameplay from the older games,” said Iizuka.

“However, we have included the older gameplay as part of Sonic’s 20th Anniversary, so we think the fans of the older games will enjoy it [Generations] as well. We are also looking into continuing the Sonic 4 series which was released on WiiWare, and we’ll keep developing titles so more fans will enjoy the games.”

Source: ONM

Nintendo Power Sonic Generations 3DS Details

As revealed yesterday, copies of the new issue of Nintendo Power have been delivered to subscribers, which unveil a Nintendo 3DS version of Sonic’s big 20th Anniversary game Sonic Generations. Details from the issue have been shared by Sonic Retro forum member Effexor, and it appears this version of the game will be very unique and not just a port.

Here’s all of the main details:
* The Nintendo 3DS version is being co-developed by Sonic Team and Dimps.
* The director of the 3DS version is Tetsu Katano, who directed Sonic and the Black Knight.
* 2D side-scrolling gameplay for both Classic Sonic and Modern Sonic.
* Momentum based gameplay and platforming are fully featured in the Classic Sonic gameplay.
* Modern Sonic plays a lot like the Sonic Rush games and Nintendo DS version of Sonic Colours.
* Nintendo 3DS version will have exclusive stages and boss stages.
* Green Hill Zone will be the only shared stage in both the HD console version and Nintendo 3DS version.
* Casino Night Zone from Sonic the Hedgehog 2 is confirmed for the Nintendo 3DS version.
* Story has some differences between the console and Nintendo 3DS versions, but will be fundamentally the same.
* Console version will have many characters, but the Nintendo 3DS version will only feature the ones who are integral to the story.
* There is no Wii version. Sonic Team head Takashi Iizuka says this is because “The primary goal for the console versions of Generations was reimagining the series’s classic zones in vivid, high-definition graphics.”
* Sonic the Hedgehog 3‘s Launch Base Zone ‘Big Arm’ boss fight is in the game, which suggests that stage is also in the game.
* Classic Eggman appears in the above mentioned boss.
* Exclusive to the Nintendo 3DS version are challenges that you can unlock via StreetPass or Play Coins.
* The game also features an exclusive two-player race mode via local wireless connection.
* Modern Sonic stages take advantage of the 3D feature more than the Classic Sonic stages. An example shown and detailed is a part in the Green Hill Zone where Modern Sonic smashes through the bottom of a giant totem pole. The camera then moves to the front of Sonic and lets you see the rest of the pole collapse behind Sonic as he escapes.
* The 3D depth is also highlighted when Modern Sonic occasionally moves between the foreground and the background.
* Jun Senoue and his music team are working on the music for the game.
* Nintendo Power thinks the handful of tracks they’ve heard so far are “fantastic”.
* Special Stages are confirmed and are designed in Sonic Heroes style. As expected, you earn Chaos Emeralds from these stages. Whether or not Super Sonic will be your reward for earning all Chaos Emeralds is unclear right now.

For more information, screenshots and interviews with Takashi Iizuka and Jun Senoue, pick up a copy of Nintendo Power when it hits retailers later this week.

Thanks to Blue Blood for the heads up!

Note: Links to scans are not permitted, so please keep them out of the comments section. Any comments with links to scans will be edited/deleted.

Sonic Generations Demo Approved For Australia

Australia’s Classification Board today approved a demo for Sonic’s new PS3 and Xbox 360 title Sonic Generations. The board rated the demo ‘General’, which deems it fit for all audiences to play. With the demo being rated now and the full game not due out until the holiday season later this year, could we be getting to download a sample of the game sooner rather than later?

A demo for Sonic the Hedgehog (2006) was released on Xbox Live Marketplace in September, rather than around the full game’s November release, as with most game’s demos. There’s always the possibility that this could just be a rating for a demo being shown to the press and/or public at various events though, so don’t get your hopes too high.

Sonic’s 20th Birthday is June 23rd and we’re sure a demo release around then would be a welcome surprise for fans.

Source: Australia’s Classification Board (via Siliconera)

New Sonic Generations Gameplay Video Confirms Classic Music

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zmN0Z6GAfj0&feature=player_embedded

Spanish gaming website Meristation has posted a new video interview with Sonic Team head in which he confirms other characters will appear in Sonic Generations, but he wouldn’t say whether they would be playable or limited to the story. Plenty of direct-feed gameplay footage is also included in the video, which confirms the original classic Green Hill Zone music will play during classic Sonic’s stage, while a remix of the same music will play during modern Sonic’s stage.

Source: Meristation

What do you think of the game so far? Share your thoughts in the comments.
Thanks to Ferr at the SSMB for the heads up and to Woun at the SSMB for the YouTube upload!

Sonic Generations Previews and Interview With Iizuka

With the official announcement of Sonic Generations comes the first batch of hands-on previews and an interview with Sonic Team’s Takashi Iizuka from the internets top gaming websites revealing more details about the game. We’ve dissected a few of the features below if you just want the main points.

IGN
Classic Sonic plays as you remember him from the 16 bit days
“On the other there’s the dynamic 3D acrobatics of modern Sonic, complete with homing jump, dash attack, and an added sense of speed.”
IGN give the impression that this game embraces the classic Sonic games better than Sonic 4: Episode 1 did.
Takashi Iizuka responds to IGN’s criticism of Sonic 4: Episode 1 and says this game will have different physics to that game: “In [Sonic the Hedgehog 4] Episode I, we didn’t actually return to the old physics, and nor did we try to create something totally new,” Iizuka says, “What we tried to do was respond to the voices we heard in the fans, and create something based on the feedback we were receiving from fans. On this occasion, with Sonic Generations, we’ve created a game with a totally different game and with completely different physics.”
Momentum gameplay returns in Sonic Generations.
IGN says this game’s levels are all from the series’ 20 year history.
“It’s not a pixel-for-pixel remake”
“There have also been a few concessions to the modern generation”
Speed runs are encouraged
Checkpoints throw up a split time, letting the player know how far down they are on their personal best time, making online leaderboards very likely to be featured in the final game.
In reference to Modern Sonic: “Thankfully, Sonic Generations seems to be taking many of its cues for the 3D sections from Colours, and it shares the Wii games hyperactive imagination. In a handful of short minutes Sonic is spun and sped through the chequered hills with breathless pace, at one point taking a detour through a dank cave which he’s chased out of by a giant chomping robot fish.”
All levels are playable by both Sonic’s.

Gamespot
Current playable demo has the game’s first two levels
“The game will encompass the 20 years of Sonic’s history and will be set across three defining eras: the 2D Mega Drive/Genesis era, the introduction of 3D in the Dreamcast era, and the modern-day HD graphics era.”
“Instead of creating new levels, the developers have re-vamped a bunch of iconic stages throughout these eras in HD and have given players the choice of playing each stage in either classic side-scrolling 2D or in modern-era 3D”
Classic Sonic’s gameplay style and move set is from the classic era, while modern Sonic plays as he does in his respective era, “meaning the spin dash and spin attack for classic Sonic and the homing attack and sonic boost for modern Sonic.”
Green Hill Zone was played in both classic and modern
“Our head spun as we watched Sonic get back into old form in the classic mode, zipping around the various springs, slopes, and loops, jumping for rings, avoiding spikes and generally becoming reacquainted with all his old abilities (the spin dash is a favourite). It’s fast, but it’s nothing compared to what comes next.” From this we can assume that the spin-dash hasn’t been nerfed like in Sonic 4: Episode 1.
Modern Sonic has the camera follow closely behind him, as shown in the trailer and screenshots.
Modern Sonic can use homing attack
“This incarnation of the level also introduced zip lines, which Sonic glides across to avoid pits and large bodies of water. We also saw an underground part that has Sonic sliding across a zip line through a cave while being pursued by a giant mechanical fish. Things got crazy when Sonic decided to use his boost while zipping: it took the game from supersonic to hypersonic with no remorse for the poor sod watching (us).”
Multiple paths return for modern Sonic.
“Our demo was over before we knew it, but it left us feeling giddy with excitement. Or maybe just giddy.”

Gamespot also has an interview with Sonic Team head Takashi Iizuka.

Sonic Generations uses the Hedgehog Engine used in Sonic Unleashed
A “playable menu” lets you pick between classic Sonic and modern Sonic and their respective levels.
“Moving forward we would like to continue creating, and ensure Sonic is enjoyed by as many people as possible, not just in games but in other media as well.”
Iizuka says the team is trying to bring everything from Sonic’s 20 year history for all kinds of Sonic fans to enjoy in this new game.

Other previews can be found at Joystiq and Kotaku.

SEGA Officially Announces Sonic Generations for Xbox 360 and PS3

SEGA has just officially announced the title of their new Sonic game for Xbox 360 and PS3. As leaks and rumours suggested, the game is titled Sonic Generations and will be released Holiday 2011. SEGA’s also issued a press release revealing details about the game and its plot, as well as some screenshots and a trailer.

Check out the press release below:

Celebrate 20 years of Sonic the Hedgehog with Sonic Generations™

LONDON & SAN FRANCISCO (April 18th, 2011) – SEGA® Europe Ltd. & SEGA® America, Inc., today announced details of Sonic Generations™, the highly anticipated video game title in development to celebrate Sonic the Hedgehog’s 20th Anniversary. Delivering the definitive gaming experience for Sonic fans old and new, Sonic Generations™ sees Sonic the Hedgehog playable as both the much loved classic 1991 character, and the modern day video game hero he has become in this exciting new fast paced adventure. Sonic Generations™ will speed into stores for the Xbox 360® video game and entertainment system from Microsoft and PlayStation®3 computer entertainment system for Holiday 2011.

Set across three defining eras from 20 years of Sonic the Hedgehog video game history, the instantly recognisable environments of Sonic Generations™ have been re-built in stunning HD and are now playable in both classic side scrolling 2D from 1991, as well as modern 3D style found in Sonic’s most recent adventures. Each incarnation of Sonic in Sonic Generations™ comes complete with his trademark special move, Spin Dash and Spin Attack for Classic Sonic, and Homing Attack and Sonic Boost for Modern Sonic. An innovative new interactive menu system allows for complete immersion in Sonic’s universe with favourite characters and hidden treasures gradually being revealed throughout the game.

“Sonic Generations will certainly be a fitting celebration for Sonic’s 20th Anniversary” commented David Corless, Global Brand Director for Sonic. “By having the classic 1991 Sonic that many fans know and love team up with his modern day incarnation, we are bringing back the nostalgia of the early days of Sonic and combining it with the innovation and stunning HD technology of the modern gaming era. Sonic Generations will bring to life the last twenty years of Sonic’s universe in a truly unique and imaginative way”

Sonic’s universe is thrown into chaos when a mysterious new power creates ‘time holes’ which pull him and his friends back through time. As a result he encounters some surprises from his past history including Classic Sonic, Sonic as he appeared in 1991. Modern Sonic and Classic Sonic must defeat this strange new enemy, save their friends, and find out who really is behind this diabolical deed…

Screenshots can be seen at the games product page at SEGA’s website.

Source: SEGA of America Blog

Check Out SEGA Japan’s New Year’s Card

8-4.jp has posted up scans of various New Year’s postcards that they’ve received from various companies in the gaming industry and one such company is SEGA Japan, who sent out the above post card featuring new artwork of Sonic in a snazzy white tuxedo alongside the 20th Anniversary emblem.

What do you think of the postcard? Do you like Sonic’s posh threads? Should Sonic wear trousers? Speak out in the comments.

Source: 8-4.jp (via GoNintendo)

Iizuka Explains The Secret to Making 2D Gameplay Work

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.

Source: Xbox World 360 @ CVG (via GoNintendo)

SEGA Teases Sonic 20th Anniversary “Projects”, Teaser Site Live


It’s already 2011 in Japan and so SEGA Japan has seen fit to kick-start Sonic the Hedgehog and the Puyo Puyo series’ 20th Anniversary year off with the tease that they have a variety of projects in the works to celebrate this milestone for the blue blur and its popular puzzler. What these “projects” are is anyone’s guess for the time being, but we’ll keep an eye out for new info and media in the year ahead. For now, you can check out a teaser website for Sonic’s 20th that is now live, though there’s not much to see at the moment.

What would you like to see for Sonic’s big 20th Anniversary? Speak out in the comments.

Source: Andriasang

Iizuka: “We recognise there are different needs”

CVG has published a new interview with Sonic Team head Takashi Iizuka today. In the interview we find out Iizuka’s thoughts on how Sonic Colours compares to past 3D titles and why this latest entry isn’t being released on Xbox 360 and PS3.

Iizuka explains that the comparison between past 3D Sonic games and Sonic Colours is the cast of characters. The older titles had a large playable cast, while Colours has Sonic alone, which he says is what the fans want.

If you look at previous 3D Sonic games, it began with Sonic Adventure and moved on to others. Those titles always had Sonic as the main characters but also had different rival characters. Those characters were like different action characters – Sonic was the speed character. This time around in Sonic Colours the team really wanted to focus on high-speed Sonic, which is what made the Sonic games special to begin with. The focus was always on the Sonic character itself, they wanted to make Sonic as the only playable character because fans only want to play as Sonic.

Instead of having other characters with different gameplay twists, Iizuka says this time they decided to implement the Wisp power-ups, so they could keep Sonic’s fast-paced gameplay and not break the tempo.

At the same time they also want a different twist to the gameplay and that is why we introduced the Colour powers. The focus is on high-speed Sonic and those colour powers are in more of a complimentary role. We wanted high-speed to be the main focus and didn’t really want to break up the tempo. It’s more like we tried to blend in those actions in a more efficient way, not really distracting the player from the core gameplay.

When asked if Sonic fits with the Xbox 360 and PS3 audiences, Iizuka details why they went with the Nintendo platforms for Sonic Colours and that Sonic still has an audience on the HD platforms.

It’s not that Sonic is for the Nintendo platform, it’s more like when we looked at the target audience for this particular title we wanted to expand the franchise more to newcomers. That is why we chose the Nintendo platforms.

This doesn’t mean that the PS3 and 360 don’t have an audience for Sonic any more, it’s just this title in particular is more tailor made for the Nintendo platform fans – more like fun, enjoyable and vibrant, which Nintendo platforms excel at. It’s more that this type of game is more tailored to those platforms.

Finally, Iizuka tells CVG how Sonic Team recognise there are different needs in the Sonic fanbase, how some want speed, others want platforming and the rest want something new. He says they are looking forward to developing more titles in the future that cater to these different groups of fans.

This year the reason the team is releasing Sonic 4 and Sonic Colours in the same release window is because we recognise there are different needs in terms of Sonic games and characters. There is the platforming, the high-speed and people looking for something new. This is the style that the team thinks works best, looking at the classic fans in one way and the new one in another.

It’s pretty hard for the team to satisfy those two very different fans with just one title. We probably look forward to developing titles which are made more towards the core and casual Sonic fans, that’s probably one of the ways the team thinks it can keep Sonic popular and expand fans for the future.

For the full interview, head over to CVG.

SPOnG Interviews Takashi Iizuka

SPOnG has posted up their full interview with Sonic Team Producer Takashi Iizuka, an interview they posted a sample of on Friday, which revealed that the light-hearted and pick-up-and-play gameplay style of the Mario & Sonic at the Olympic Games series influenced Sonic Colours.

The interview was held by Sonic Stadium founder Svend Joscelyne (aka Dreadknux), who works as a journalist at SPOnG. In the interview Joscelyne asks some very interesting questions that are certainly a step-up from most interviews that ask the same tired old questions.

The interview begins with Joscelyne querying the inspirations behind the various Wisp powers in Sonic Colours, which Iizuka explains are to help Sonic reach news areas in the game.

The basics for all the colour powers come from the desire to let Sonic go to places that he normally can’t access on his own. When we sit down to think of new Wisps and their functions, we look at the kind of areas that Sonic cannot reach, despite his speed and platforming powers.

We’ve all seen that the game borrows its speed from Sonic Unleashed, but just how much focus is there on speed in this game? Iizuka says that you can speed through the stages without the aid of Wisp powers if you like, but you won’t get to truly explore the stages and gain those hidden red rings without them

You can speed through each stage as fast as you like, without using Wisps, but what those colour powers actually do is give players a chance to explore and replay all of those stages too. Collecting the hidden red rings is one reward for doing so, and the world map shows how many you have found in each level. Without using the Wisps, you won’t always be able to get those red rings.

Some fans may have wondered if Dimps is working on the Wii version of Sonic Colours, after helping out with Sonic Unleashed on Wii. Well, this interview gives us confirmation that Sonic Team are working solo on the Wii version and Dimps is working solo on the DS version.

For Sonic Colours, our two teams worked quite well together on the concept, but we developed the 2D Nintendo DS and 3D Wii versions rather independently. The Wii version is fully developed internally, because we know a lot more about 3D Sonic development than some other developers. Dimps has the experience to make a 2D Sonic game as best as they can, and so they have exclusively worked on the Nintendo DS version – they had no real input in terms of the Wii development.

In recent months there has been more interest in the Sonic fan-base growing towards Sonic Colours over Sonic the Hedgehog 4: Episode 1. Joscelyne asks Iizuka’s thoughts on this.

It’s not so much a feeling of surprise, but the team and I really appreciate that a lot of classic fans are looking forward to Sonic Colours as well. I mean, Sonic Colours was created largely as a 3D title for the people who have become fans of the Sonic franchise most recently, but it’s good to hear that the game has been received so well from the older fans too.

Next, Joscelyne asks Iizuka about THAT recent statement about Sonic Colours being built for a ‘younger audience’, a statement that was later corrected by a member of staff from SEGA. Joscelyne asks why a distinction was made and if it was a misquote or a mistranslation, to which Iizuka responds with the below answer in full.

It wasn’t really a misquote or a mistranslation. The reason why I said ‘younger audiences’ is because the team and I wanted to capitalise on the new audience that we gained through the success of the Mario & Sonic games. Those titles in particular really worked well for Sonic as a character because it made our potential audience much broader than existing Sonic fans.

That created an opportunity for us to build a bigger fanbase, but we noticed that there weren’t that many mainstream Sonic titles available for the Wii and DS post-Mario & Sonic. That’s why Sonic Colours is a proper platforming mainstream game, so that those new fans can discover and learn more about the franchise beyond those spinoff titles. In that way, it’s not really focused on young audiences in terms of age, but more as in maintaining that broader market.

Even though this is the case, if you look at the core gameplay elements of Sonic Colours, you’ll notice that this is a true platforming action game that the core fans can also enjoy. The ultimate goal for Sonic Colours has always been to make the best Sonic title we can for the widest possible target audience. The market nature that the Wii and DS have is the reason why I used the term ‘younger audiences’.

Next, Joscelyne asks for Iizuka’s feelings about Sonic’s downward spiral in recent years and Yuji Naka’s exit from Sonic Team in 2006 to create his own company, Prope. While Iizuka was sad to see Naka go, he gives fans assurance that Naka’s absence hasn’t changed the team as much as some people would like to think. “Sonic Team is always Sonic Team” he says.

I really miss Naka-san and was sad to see him leave when he decided to form his own company. But even at that time, he wasn’t the only person making decisions for the games. Concepts and gameplay elements were all discussed as a team, for example. So while it was very sad to see him go, Sonic Team is always Sonic Team and it didn’t necessarily mean that Sonic was destined to head in a different direction post-Naka-san. At least, not as different as some people may think.

The interview ends with a little something fans of Sonic Colours direction will be glad to hear, as Joscelyne asks Iizuka “Is it safe to say then, that future Sonic titles will have the same kind of colourful, simple, laid-back feel that Sonic Colours has?” to which Iizuka replies:

Yes, that’s the vision that I have.

To read the full interview, head over to SPOnG.

Joscelyne also reveals some interesting details from his playtime with Sonic Colours on Wii:

Taking a producer role on Sonic Colours, the Sonic Team head demonstrated two new Wisp powers that the blue blur can take advantage of – the Red Spikes and the Green Hover. Like the other abilities, these work as optional gameplay gimmicks that can help Sonic overcome otherwise challenging platforming segments, but they can also be used to open up new routes and explore the stages in their full glory.

Spikes will let Sonic stick to any given surface and roll along it, making him invincible at the same time. Pressing the B trigger on the Wii Remote will let Sonic perform a traditional spindash move and zip along the surface he’s on.

Using the Hover ability turns Sonic into a giant green Sonic head and gives you the power to hover, of course – which is very handy in levels where you might need to take advantage of any platforms sitting in the sky. If there’s a trail of rings, pressing B will make Sonic automatically follow it until its end. A bit like the Light Speed Dash in Sonic Adventure games, only without the potential death.

These new Wisps were being demonstrated on a brand new level, called Starlight Carnival – a beautifully bright, colourful stage set in space that reminds me a hell of a lot like a combination of Sonic CD’s Stardust Speedway and Mario Kart’s Rainbow Road.

Platforming, dodging and floating was all going on against a backdrop featuring a fleet of Dr. Eggman’s starships. Iizuka is keen to stress that the presence of starships “is not as serious as it sounds,” pointing out the light-hearted Disneyland-inspired level design and the infectiously happy soundtrack.

What do you think of Iizuka’s latest statements? Discuss in the comments.