Amazon.com Outs S&ASR Transformed ‘Bonus Edition’ and World Tour Mode

Amazon.com and .co.uk have today updated their listings for Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed with a full product description that reveals a ‘World Tour’ mode. This is likely what previews have been referring to as ‘Story’ mode and will be how players unlock new content, much like ‘Planet Superstars’ mode in SEGA Superstars Tennis. Amazon.com has also updated all versions of the game to a ‘Bonus Edition’, though, unfortunately, they don’t explain what this edition of the game includes. We’ll keep an eye out for an update.

The full official product description and packshots from another angle (including the 3DS version’s menu icon) are available after the jump courtesy of Amazon UK:
Continue reading Amazon.com Outs S&ASR Transformed ‘Bonus Edition’ and World Tour Mode

S&ASR Transformed Character Roster to Differ Across Platforms

Sumo Digital’s Steve Lycett aka S0L has informed fans via the official SEGA Forums that the character roster for Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed will differ across platforms. The total number of characters across all platforms is 29, but no single version will include all 29. Some will have low 20’s and others will have high 20’s. Steve says this is because some platforms feature characters that are unique to that platform, but won’t announce which right now. However, he does say that some are SEGA characters and some are not.

The full statement is available after the jump:
Continue reading S&ASR Transformed Character Roster to Differ Across Platforms

Zavvi.com Reveals New S&ASR Transformed Details

UK online retailer Zavvi is listing Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed available for pre-order, and accompanying the listings is a very long and detailed product description containing new information about the game.

Here’s a brief list of the new details:
* Tracks feature multiple routes, including shortcuts.
* 27 characters, not including the 3 guest characters.
* As well as ordinary power-ups, racers can find ‘Super power-ups’ hidden in the tracks.
* Story mode features 16 tracks, where you unlock other characters.
* Racing earns points for your chosen racer’s rank through a five rank leveling system.
* As you rank up, you unlock achievements, perk style vehicle modifications and more.
* Online multiplayer supports eight players. Grand Prix and battle modes are now playable online.

You can also read the full product description after the jump:
Continue reading Zavvi.com Reveals New S&ASR Transformed Details

Disney’s “Wreck it Ralph” a Playable Character in Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed!

It’s slowly becoming clear why this game isn’t called Sonic & ‘Sega’ all stars racing Transformed. At yesterdays Sonic Boom event, in a surprise announcement that not even Tikal could have predicted. The director of the movie ‘Wreck it Ralph’ Rich Moore took to the stage and dropped one heck of a surprise.

Continue reading Disney’s “Wreck it Ralph” a Playable Character in Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed!

NASCAR’s Danica Patrick Playable in Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed

[UPDATE: You can check out the official press release here]

Well, I think it’s fair to say that no one saw this coming!

As reported yesterday, SEGA had a major announcement to make today at E3 alongside a celebrity apperance – and in a curveball to end all curveballs, it has been revealed that NASCAR driver Danica Patrick is going to be a playable character in the upcoming Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed. Yep, you read that right. We’re about as dumbfounded as you are.

Continue reading NASCAR’s Danica Patrick Playable in Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed

Meccano Shows Off ASRT Toys & Confirms Green Hill Zone?

 

You might remember how we’ve previously brought you news about Meccano making toys based on All Stars Racing 2 (back before we knew it’s official title)? Well Meccano have finally released a number of images based on their newly acquired Sonic license… and my oh my they look lovely.

More after the break.

Continue reading Meccano Shows Off ASRT Toys & Confirms Green Hill Zone?

4 Player Split-Screen Online Revealed for Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_5j-kflfKy8[/youtube]

In the above interview (at 03:53) with Rev3Games, Sumo Digital’s Gareth Wilson has revealed that Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed will support split-screen multiplayer online. This means that you and up to three friends at home can play together with others online, even in Grand Prix mode. Pretty cool stuff.

Source: Rev3Games

P.S. See if you can spot a certain TSS writer in the video.

[UPDATE] New S&ASRT Gameplay Footage Featured in This Week’s PS Access Episode

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

UPDATE: We now have the footage for you above, courtesy of SSMB member Rawrdom.

Sony has snagged some exclusive gameplay footage of the newly announced title Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed for their free UK downloadable show PlayStation Access. In Episode 32 released on the PlayStation Store today, you can check out about 25 seconds of new gameplay footage from the Panzer Dragoon themed track. Sumo Digital’s Joe Neate also speaks briefly on the show.

Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed Announced

Finally, months after we were the first to post several rumors regarding a new All-Stars game, we finally have an announcement. Ladies and gentleman, Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed is on the way to the PS3, Xbox 360, 3DS, Vita and PC this fall! Continue reading Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed Announced

Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed Listing Appears at GamesRadar

Following yesterday’s teaser by Sumo Digital’s Steve Lycett aka S0L and the many reports since we first brought you news of a possible sequel to Sonic & SEGA All-Stars Racing, a listing has just appeared over at GamesRadar for a PS3 title called Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed. Has GamesRadar let the cat out of the bag?

Source: GamesRadar

RUMOUR: Sonic & SEGA All-Stars Racing Sequel/Remix in the Works?

We have received word from a tipster, who wishes to remain anonymous, that a new Sonic & SEGA All-Stars Racing game could be on the way. Our tipster recently spoke to a high ranking staff member at development studio Sumo Digital, and when queried about new projects, the developer gave the below reply.

“Now working on another title for Sega on 3DS, VITA and WiiU. [The] title we are working on is top secret but the last game we did for them was Sonic And Sega All-Star Racing, so the logical conclusion would be… :)”

While the game could be a sequel to 2010’s Sonic & SEGA All-Stars Racing, there is also a possibility, given the platforms, that it could be a remixed version of the first game with new characters & courses specifically tailored to Wii U, 3DS & Vita. But having said that, the tipster informs us that the developer told them months ago that they will be doing no more additional work on the first game. Continue reading RUMOUR: Sonic & SEGA All-Stars Racing Sequel/Remix in the Works?

Sumo Digital Have New SEGA Ideas Brewing

Steve Lycett Executive Producer of Sumo Digital who are known for developing SEGA Superstars Tennis, F1 2009 and most recently Sonic & SEGA All-Stars Racing among other titles popped by the SSMB yesterday where he informed they are working on new things that can’t be talked about right now, a new game perhaps? Steve also in another post stated that they have some SEGA ideas brewing.

You can check out both posts quoted below –

Hello,

I’m not dead, honest

I’d have a job playing the PS3 version, I don’t own a PS3! So sadly I’ll have to decline this for the moment. I’m also mad busy getting new stuff off the ground here at Sumo, nothing we can talk about just yet, just free time’s not been something I’ve had in abundance these last few weeks…


S0L

Link

We’ll call it a draw I think

I’m not working on the Dr. Who game, I’m actually pretty jealous of the guys who are! I can’t go into any details sadly on the new stuff, right now we’ve got a few ideas brewing SEGA wise though


S0L

Link

Time will tell what these new yet to be announced things are and E3 is coming up next month so we’ll keep an eye open to see if anything is announced there then report back. For now let the speculation commence in the comments section below.

ASR DLC Ball In SEGA’s Court Now

After returning from a holiday in Japan (welcome back) Steve Lycett Executive Producer at Sumo Digital has begun his community support in the SEGA/Sonic community forums again and today revealed the current stance on future downloadable content for Sonic & SEGA All-Stars Racing in a post at the SSMB.

Yep, you’ve missed one. Switch the leaderboards to Local only and then play through the tracks, if any have the ‘Staff Ghost’ racing on them, you need to beat it still. If it says ‘Sumo Ghost’ you’ve beaten the default ghost and can skip that one.

On the update, ta for that Mr. Casanova. Pretty much as I expected really

Someone else has a Ryo Forklift toy then? We got ours the other day, I was expecting something… nicer! Still, can’t complain, it’s now in our trophy cabinet – boxed up and never to be opened. Ours also didn’t come with a number painted on it. So therefore I can only assume it’s 1/1000 and Doctor Eggmans’s is 2/1000. You can quote me on that

Future DLC is all up to SEGA now. They’ve put out all the bits we’ve done, personally I think they’ll now look to see how the existing stuff goes and decide if they want some more. Not seen any figures yet, but then I’m only nicely getting back into the groove!

S0L

So it looks like the ball is in SEGA’s court as to whether future DLC will happen, currently for the game fans can buy Ryo Forklift and a Metal Sonic & Death Egg pack. Outside of the game Xbox 360 fans can buy Avatar items and a Premium Dashboard theme, there were reports of a PS3 Premium Theme being released on the 22nd April but that never appeared. Will sales of the current DLC be good enough to peek SEGA’s interest? Only time will tell and if we hear anything we’ll let you know.

[Wii & DS Boards Fixed]Sumo Digital and SEGA Fixing ASR Time Trial Cheats/Glitches

UPDATE: After fixing the Wii leaderboards, the DS online leaderboards have now been fixed too. /UPDATE END

You may have heard word about a glitch in Sonic & SEGA All-Stars Racing revealed yesterday that can be abused to rank high on the time trial modes online leaderboards with very short lap times. The glitch is in all 3 home console versions Xbox 360, PS3 and Wii but the Wii version aswell as the DS version also contain times achieved using cheat devices.

Good news is that Sumo Digital and SEGA are aware of the glitchers and cheaters and are hard at work to fix the problems. The Wii version has today had the problem players times removed from the leaderboards and the names of those players filed so if they try to cheat/glitch their way onto the leaderboards again they will be banned.

Here are some statements from Sumo Digital Executive Producer Steve Lycett at the SEGA Forums –

I’m trying to decide, is this a thread bemoaning an exploit, or the Wii online?

I’m taking a look into this now with SEGA, then we’ll decide what to do to address it.

Watch this space


S0L

Link

Whilst you’re busy bashing the Wii – I’ve just cleared all the hacked times and glitch times from the Wii leaderboards

I’ve got a log of the folk doing them too. Don’t make me break out the ban hammer

Just looking into the other platforms now.


S0L

Link

A response from Shadi Wulf –

Yeah =P but how long is that gonna last until people start uploading more glitched times.

Link

Back to Steve Lycett –

“I’ve got a log of the folk doing them too. Don’t make me break out the ban hammer ”

*cough*

As above


S0L

Link

Another post from Steve at the SSMB –

Yeah, I’ve sorted the Wii out, just looking into sorting the others. I don’t want a few people ruining the fun for the majority


S0L

Link

We don’t condone the glitch and cheats so to not encourage people to perform them we aren’t posting the methods of how to perform the glitch or info for the cheats. We’ll let you know if and when the Xbox 360 and PS3 versions get a fix.

In other news, Sumo Digital staffer SumoRex at the SEGA forums has made a comment regarding the upcoming DLC –

Well. It’s impossible to please everyone, with people who love, and others who hate the same content. That was one of the things that made me quit. You can’t please everyone. No matter how hard you try.
Anyway, without giving anything away, the stuff you’ll get is nice. IMHO.
I dunno what the price is, but it’s not just an unlock, it represents LOTS of man hours.

Link

Thanks to Starlight Rage Zone at the SEGA Forums for the heads up on SumoRex’s statement.

ASR DLC Coming Sooner Rather Than Later, No All-Star Moves Online Explained

Steve Lycett Executive Producer at Sumo Digital has posted over at the SSMB an explanation as to why why All-Star Moves are disabled in online play on Sonic & SEGA All-Stars Racing(all versions) after forum members questioned the absence, here is what Steve had to say –

There’s no All-Star moves online on any platform. Basically those moves are quite complicated and extremely difficult to network. We did a few of them too, and the latency we were seeing didn’t work very nicely. Rather than put something in that didn’t work to everyones expectations – we thought it better to disable them online for a better play experience.

If you’re seeing someone do All-Star moves online, they’ve hacked the game. Kick them out of the lobby

Steve also confirmed at the SSMB that DLC will be coming very soon rather than later, the DLC will be announced by SEGA instead of Sumo Digital but Steve did say he’s been playing it and in his oppinion its awesome –

You’ll hear more about DLC very soon. I don’t want to steal SEGA’s thunder on this. But you’ll be seeing some sooner than you expect – and it’s AWESOME. I’ve just played it 🙂

Also of note we may be seeing more concept art from the game if SEGA of Japan give the green light –

I’ll see what I can do on this. Traditionally it’s quite hard to release art that’s not been approved by SEGA Japan, as we need to make sure any ‘official’ release of art is consistent with the ‘expected’ looks of their characters.

The Xbox 360 has already received a frame-rate patch but both Xbox 360 and PS3 may be getting a patch when the DLC is released –

There already is on 360. We’re still tweaking with the engine, so you may well see further improvements when we launch the DLC. It’s pretty smooth now though for the final release, don’t expect a jump to 60fps though…!

UPDATE:
A deeper explanation from Steve Lycett regarding no All-Star Moves online at the SEGA Forums

Right I’m back.

I was down in London for two days, attending a Microsoft Dev conference. Only access I had to the web was my iPhone. Have you tried posting a long and complicated forum post on one of those? Trust me, it’s not easy

Also remember I do this in my free time, I don’t get paid for it, I don’t get thanked for it, and I do have to spend time with my family now and again!

Anyway, on this topic. As with all decisions, don’t think we made this one lightly.

The first point is that all the All-Star moves work differently, so we’d effectively have to code each one with specific network code. With all the differences in characters, that’s 23 different bits of code to write there.

Then lets look at what we have to work with. Whilst most of you have super fast download speed, what you don’t realise if you don’t have superfast upload speed. Our target for game communications is 64 kilobits. Note bits not bytes. In that very small amount of data we have to send everyones current position, projected vector, all weapon fire as well as voice chat. Not everyone is on fiber optic broadband you know!

So we’re already sending lots of data, and the ASM’s mean that we’d have to compress this down even further for extra weapon fire.

Of course a lot of the All-Star moves also include increased speed, so in cases with high latency where we’ve already got to be sure we’re not jumping cars around all over the place, we then would have even more extremes of movement -which under high lag would result in false positives for ASM hits. I.e. you maybe nowhere near Super Sonic – but you get blatted off the track as someone has dropped packets and the dead reckoning *thinks* you might have been hit.

Finally, when it comes to network games, you have to be sure that all the systems are deterministic. Basically that if you fire a weapon on one machine, it will fire the same way on another. If this isn’t the case you wind up with synchronisation issues, quite simply what you see on your screen, won’t be what other player see on theres. Not all the ASM are deteministic as they’re all different, the best example is length of use. Depending on where you are in the pack, they last for varying amounts of time. So if we’ve got any latency causing the positions to be out of sync – even for a millisecond – on one machine it may last for 4 seconds, on the other 10. That happens, and oh oh, we’re really out of sync. Cue everyone gets booted back to the lobby.

So with much reluctance, we conceeded that rather than ship it with things that could go wrong down to latency, especially with cross continent play, it would be a better experience to ship it with the ASM disabled during on-line play.

So that is why it’s not available, as we didn’t want to ruin the online experience with All-Star moves that didn’t work consistantly and fairly. I think when you understand this – the decision makes a lot more sense.

Will we add it back in the future? I think it’s unlikely. In the future when everyone has an internet connection that runs at LAN speeds, it’ll be doable, but not for a few years.


S0L

ASR Dev Diary #4 Now Online

The OutRun2 and Virtua Tennis 3 cabinets at Sumo Digital.

Steve “S0L” Lycett, the producer of Sonic and Sonic SEGA All Sonic Stars Sonic Racing featuring Sonic, has been filling us in on the game’s development every step of the way through forum posts and a diary.  The fourth entry in his Developer Diary talks about the painstaking amount of work that the art team has had to endure and the capabilities of the game’s “Sunshine Engine.”  The work involved when creating the game for each console is discussed as well.

While detailing all of the intricacies of the game, Steve takes us on a tour of the Sumo Digital building.  Interesting, to say the least.  I really want that Virtua Tennis 3 cabinet.

Check out Dev Diary #4 at the Sonic City Blognik.

Inside Xbox UK Interview Sumo Digital

If you live in the UK turn on your Xbox 360 and get it connected to Xbox Live because a new interview has hit Inside Xbox with Sumo Digitals Executive Producer Steve Lycett and Lead Artist Dave Blewett. In the interview Steve Lycett speaks about all of the various modes in the game and reveals two new multiplayer modes called Capture the Chao and Knockout, Capture the Chao is like any first-person shooters Capture the Flag and Knockout is like a survivor mode with the person in last place given just 15 seconds to get back in the pack or else they get kicked out.

Dave Blewett discusses how Avatar support and Banjo-Kazooie came to be and bringing very old SEGA characters up to todays 3D graphical standard.

There is also some new gameplay footage from a wide variety of the tracks too, it’s a very interesting interview so switch on your Xbox 360 and give it a watch.

Preview: Sonic & SEGA All-Stars Racing

The same two questions seem to be asked over and over whenever Sonic & SEGA All-Stars Racing gets mentioned. “Why is Sonic in a car?” and “Is it going to be better than Mario Kart?”. If you read this site often enough you’ll know the answer to the first; it’s to keep things fair as out of a vehicle Sonic would easily win any race. Sumo Digital went the first step to answer the latter question by releasing the demo for Xbox 360. TSS has been putting the game through it’s paces for the past few hours so do we think it’s shaping up to be faster than the speed of light or slower than a plumber arriving on time for an appointment?

The demo offers up the chance to play as either Sonic in his sports car or Banjo & Kazooie in their dilapidated nuts and bolts mobile. The only track available for racing is called the Lost Temple and is set in Sonic Heroe’s Seaside Hill, music and all. In fact the race course is chock full of SEGA and Sonic related paraphernalia. NiGHTS is the man in charge of the checkered flag for example and the crowd is made up of a number Chao. Crabmeat Badniks roam the sands scurrying sideways to try and block your path while Choppers leap from the sea in between jumps. Power-ups are contained TV style capsules and springs are deviously placed to shunt you off the racing line should you get too close. Any SEGA fan will be happy to soak in the detail track-side and bask in the charm of it all but when you’ve finished sightseeing it’s time to race.

This is where things may start to feel a little familiar to anyone who has played that other kart racing series. The trick to getting boost is by drifting and if you hold the accelerator down at the right time during the start you can even gain a head start. Some weapons propelled forwards bounce along the side of the track a little suspiciously like shells might elsewhere and traffic cones dropped behind you have the chance of slipping up the competition, if you get the reference. But just when you start to feel a sense of Deja-Vu creep over you the  excitable announcer will shout about someone having hold of an “All-Star” and your world is about to be rocked. Every character in the game has their own unique all-star move and rather than just being this games blue shell taking out the player up front they all differ which could be a huge factor in deciding which characters become your favourite.

Sonic for example is turned Super and is propelled down the track at an increased speed knocking other racers out of his way. Banjo and Kazooie make the sky rain “Jiggies”;  Over-sized jigsaw pieces as deadly to front of the pack as to the back. Shadow turns super himself and dishes out a liberal dose of Chaos Spears and Ryo Hazuki  swaps his motorbike with a fork lift truck to power down the track. On the games default difficulty setting you’ll see your rivals use these moves several times during a race. Sometimes they can be avoided while others will bring you to a standstill and potentially ruin your chances at victory.

All the All-Star moves in the world won’t get you very far until you master the basics though. As previously mentioned it’s still all about drifting which is done by holding down a drift button (The left bumper or trigger). After a few second you’ll see some boost spew out of the exhaust of your vehicle at which point you can let go of the drift button to be propelled forwards. The only other way to boost is by pressing the drift button while jumping which will trigger a trick in mid-air and a boost while on solid ground. The trick is to make sure you’re heading in the right direction for a boost as it’s all too easy to career into a wall or off a bridge by accident.

Once you have your brain around those concepts you’ll notice, on the default difficulty at least, that you’ll either just win races after a fierce battle or spend all race being every other drivers punching bag. For example, despite coming first quite in quite a few races and having the optimum driving technique more or less mastered there were still occasions where I would finish dead last or close to it thanks to a perfect storm of punishment. Being hit by missiles and boxing gloves is bad enough but getting up to speed for a ramp only to be hit by something and falling off the track is infuriating, especially as when you re-spawn you’re basically not moving forwards. Another time while taking the only short-cut on the track which involves taking a jump to a boost pad on an island, Knuckles landed on me squashing me cartoon style and sending me to a watery abyss. This re-spawned me back on dry land BEFORE the jump meaning I was last by a mile.

It’s this unpredictable nature of  ‘kart’ racing games that could really sour the experience for some. The flip side is that all the damage you take you can deal out to your foes and hitting someone with a missile and watching them fall behind you is as sweet as it sounds. Lowering the difficulty to it’s easiest has everyone just wait behind you which is no fun at all while the hardest setting is the maddest of the bunch as you fight tooth and nail for every position, the bad luck visiting almost every driver in equal measure. The balancing of the games difficulty to make the punishment exciting but not unfair will be crucial.

The frame rate in the demo isn’t the most stable but as it’s taken from an older build of the game. Steve “S0l” Lycett has promised in the SSMB that such issues had yet to be fully addressed in it’s optimization stage so hopefully the proper game will be a smoother driving experience. The game will ultimately live or die by the variety of it’s characters and it’s racetracks though and how different Sumo Digital has been able to make them feel. Seaside Hill looks pretty enough but the textures of foliage leaves a lot to be desired. Then again it’s not something you notice while you’re attempting to avoid the chaos. Other levels would do well to be packed with more SEGA references but will need some neat tricks to stop from feeling the same despite the change of scenery.

At this stage Sonic & SEGA All-Stars Racing has just enough promise, madness and ideas of its own to carve a hedgehog shaped niche in the Kart racing genre. With Mario Kart  Wii flirting with the mainstream; wide tracks, Wiimote control and all, ASR could actually find itself in first place as the hardcore Kart game of choice if everything comes together.

Sonic & SEGA All-Stars Racing is due for release February 23rd in the States and 26th in Europe for 360, Ps3, Wii and PC.

ASR 360 Demo + Theme Available & “Characters” Fully Detailed On ASR Webpage

While the majority of the Sonic fanbase is busy arguing about the former Project Needlemouse, Sumo Digital today dropped the Sonic & SEGA All-Stars Racing demo for Xbox 360 to remind everyone there is another game featuring everyone’s favourite blue hedgehog coming out rather soon. Sumo Digital staff member Steve “S0L” Lycett prompted eager fans via the SSMB with a cheeky message;

No-one been on their Xbox today then?

At a huge 1GB the demo is still downloading for me but check by this story later this evening for impressions. The demo is said to include Seaside Hill’s Lost Palace track with either Sonic or Banjo & Kazooie playable. Also available is a local multiplayer mode for up to two meaning you and a friend can battle it out split screen style. Kudos to Ferr of the SSMB for that particular piece of info. If you have a 360 yourself then what are you waiting for? No news on a PS3 or Wii demo as of yet but as soon as we hear something we’ll let you know.

If that wasn’t enough excitement for one day then you might want to check out the official ASR webpage where the “Characters” tab has been fully updated. It includes a brief bio for every announced character and a rotating model of their car. A quick look over the section also confirms Opa-Opa and the ChuChu’s as playable characters, the latter in their very own rocket!

[Update]

Resident TSS news hound Shadzter brought to my attention that the 360 Premium Theme for ASR is available to buy and will set you back 240 Microsoft points. Thanks to the wonderful AAUK we have a picture of the theme for you here;

If you want to see more head on over to the Blognik. Meanwhile you can expect a preview of ASR based on the demo later tonight on the Stadium.

Steve Lycett: “We didn’t forget NiGHTS”

UPDATE: We’ve taken down the picture of NiGHTS out of respect for the guys over at NiGHTS into Dreams since this is their exclusive so if you’d like to get a good look at NiGHTS in ASR follow the below link to their forums and check it out. /UPDATE END

Speaking exclusively at the NiGHTS into Dreams forums Steve Lycett of Sumo Digital has officially revealed NiGHTS role in Sonic & SEGA All Stars Racing after the cat was let out of the bag a few days back thanks to a certain eagle eyed forumer known as Doctor Eggman.

Right then – first off… We didn’t forget NiGHTS!

Just since you’ve all been trying to make him out from that blurry capture from Youtube, I figured we better put a nicer shot out! Consider this an exclusive

We’ve given NiGHTS a very important role. He starts all the races, and also finishes them too! He also resides over Time Trial, whenever you set a new lap record, you’ll have NiGHTS flying along with you celebrating!

I have to admit the main reason he’s in was after we saw your heartfelt pleas, especially those of DiGi and TRiPPY, we had to make sure NiGHTS was in and played an important role. After all, we really didn’t want them to burn all their collection now. So whilst he’s not playable, he very much made it in, and as a result of the huge amount of support for the character that you all showed.

Does this mean that NiGHTS may not be in future DLC? Well who can say. That’s a question I can’t answer right now – it all depends on how well the game does

Anyway – cats out of the bag, so I figured we best make it official!

Now, I can look forward to yet more ‘Don’t forget Flagman!’ posts I’m sure


S0L

So there you have it! Sumo Digital aren’t just an hard working developer, they are a caring developer who after listening to the community didn’t forget NiGHTS 😀 Join me in a toast won’t you? Now where’s my hankey…

Steve Lycett Speaks Out After ASR Leaks

After all of the leaks surrounding Sonic & SEGA All Stars Racing Steve Lycett of Sumo Digital under his S0L tag has been mostly absent in the SEGA/Sonic community but has made one post in a topic over at the Official SEGA Forums Sonic & SEGA All Stars Racing board.

Obviously Steve can’t confirm or deny the leaks but he does address some questions people might have on their mind and what had to be taken into consideration when making the game such as the variety of audiences the team had to cater for.
Steve’s full post is below –

I’m breaking cover in this thread of wrongness

First -I’m not going to talk specific characters – certainly not till I see anything official. I don’t see any official reveals – and until you do – I wouldn’t believe anything either 😛 Don’t bother asking or PM’ing me either. My lips are sealed!

When all the characters are revealed, I’m sure we’ll hear a couple of things…

1. “Why isn’t character X in the game! I’m gonna cry and cry till I’m all out of tears till you add them!”

First, wipe your nose, second, stop crying. It’s not a good look on a 35 year old man!

When we make these games, we do two things. First we need to ensure we have a varied and ranged cast – that – and hold yourself- are as interesting to a non-Sega fan, as they are to a die hard Sega fan…

Take yourself back to when you’re a small child, someone hands you the joypad and you take your first steps into videogaming. You’ve no pre-conceptions, you are mesmerised by the blue skies, the vivid green grass, the character you’re playing is joyfully jumping on the heads of passing Koopa’s – no wait – Badniks.

You’re about to be a gamer, you realise this is GREAT! But you don’t know the characters, you don’t pore over the names of stages, you’re enthralled as you’re having fun and you’re lost in a whole new world. Remember games are about fun 😛

So we’re making this game for that kid too. We do out best to get the fan service in the games, and yes, a big part of what it’s about it nostalgia, and we try our best to sit in both camps. But… this game has to appeal to a very wide audience, and we’d like to get some new gamers in and teach them something about Sega too.

2. “You are calling this game Sega All-Stars – yet character Y appeared in only one game, and they shouldn’t be in as I want character Z! (note the Z doesn’t stand for Zool OK!”

So maybe you disagree with our and SEGA’s choices. Be our guest! Again, we’ve got to make sure the cast is varied for Billy’s Gran who got a Wii for Christmas. She’s heard about that game where you can race a hedgehog against a fox, and she wants some of that action!

As we’ve always maintained, we’ve gone for a good mix across ALL ages of Sega. For all those fans who don’t like Jet Set Radio, we’ve got a forum full elsewhere who all high-fived when they saw Beat drift into view. We can’t please you all, but I think when all is revealed, we’ll have pleased a lot more folk than we did with SST.

You can’t accuse of us not listening either. We did a LOT of research after SST shipped, and I feel we’ve got in a lot of characters that were requested last time. Remember Ryo, we wanted him, and we’d got the research to prove that you guys wanted him too! It might never have happened otherwise. Yep, we’ve had a late rush of support for some characters this time, and if we do something along these lines again, or do DLC, maybe we’ll look at trying to get them in a future title. Or maybe some of them are already in, but not in a form you expect. I know at least one that’s going to make a lot of folk happy.

The other thing – is that some characters may not fit in the style of the game we’re making here. We’re doing a bright, colourful, happy shiny game. Some of the ones we’ve had suggested – are clearly not bright happy colourful characters. We’ve also got an age rating to adhere too, and some characters very much certainly would scupper this…!

It’s good you’re all so excited, it’s good you all want to fight for the characters you love. We feel the same way! But we’re still human and we still have budgets and timescales. We still want to spend some time with family and loved ones, who haven’t seen us for months as we’ve been putting the extra special effort into this game for you.

Finally, remember we’ve been doing our very best to make a game for everyone, be they old fans or new, or fans we’re going to recruit soon who will then love Sega in future, just as much as you love Sega now.

Right, back to fixing bugs, or you’ll never get your hands on the game.


S0L

A cheeky little hint at a character that appears in the game in some form or another that people are going to like ay? I wonder who that will be?

Thanks to Clisp at the SSMB for the heads up!

ASR: At Least 4 Characters Left To Be Revealed

Steve Lycett from Sumo Digital has just revealed over at the SSMB that there are at least 4 more characters left to be revealed in Sonic & SEGA All Stars Racing with some being very old school. This means we could possibly be seeing more than the 20 character total listed on retailer websites product pages and this also 100% confirms Banjo-Kazooie, Avatar’s and Mii’s are excluded from this character count.

Steve also inform’s us that the now revealed Crazy Taxi character BD Joe is the reason why he visited AM3.

That Pirate Ship stage isn’t Skies of Arcadia, it’s our take on Monkey Target – mixed up with a whole heap of pirates from Monkey Ball 3.

I know you guys are super enthusiastic, but remember that we have constraints when making these games. 24 tracks are a HUGE undertaking, especially when you have to consider I also need to make versions for next-gen, Wii and DS. That’s really 72 tracks. Not to mention the optimised versions for splitscreen (so it’s nearly an extra two thirds on top of that again!).

As such, we do need to be careful we don’t stretch too far – so yep – we’ve got 3 Monkey Ball levels, but even then, they’re all based on different themes. It’s not easy making totally new designs even when you’re basing them on existing ideas

Anyway…

I guess now they’re out there – I can confirm that it was indeed BD Joe that we asked AM3 for! And yes, finally Ulala is officially confirmed, even if Nintendo Power and the ESRB kind of let the cat out of the bag. Plus believe me, on the ones that are still secret, there are some surprises still – some are definately old school fan pleasers – there are at least 4 characters that haven’t even been hinted at


S0L

New ASR Info From Steve Lycett

Steve Lycett from Sumo Digital in one of his communitty visit’s has recently answered alot of fan’s questions in the SEGA forums. Since some questions weren’t as relevants as others we’ll only list the more important info to come from the answers

– You can play your own music during gameplay on the Xbox version but not on PS3.
– The DS version contains an exclusive Crush 40 track(track as in music of course)
– You can influence the colour of one vehicle in the game though Steve doesn’t state which vehicle.
– Snaking isn’t possible
– Sumo Digital’s network model should prevent cheaters/hackers though this can’t be 100% guaranteed.
– Some platforms will have downloadable time trial ghosts and all versions will all be able to save local ghosts.
– Only Xbox 360 and PS3 versions support voice chat via headset.
– Steve Lycett’s favourite track is Lava Lair using tree tops for drifting. Steve says “you’ll see why”
– The game starts with things locked, then you have to earn Sega Miles to buy new content in the Shop.
– Every version but the DS version has some very difficult Ghost cars from the track designer to beat.
– Steve’s favourite playable character in the game is still Big the Cat and one character he can’t talk about yet.
– Controls plan for the PC versions is for keyboard or game controllers.
– Steve can’t touch the topic of PS3 exclusive content right now.
– When asked about a Thank Your For Playing screen at the end of the game Steve says the game does say Thank You For Playing but that’s all he can say right now.

Full list of questions and answers can be found all together in my post in the SSMB topic.

Source: SEGA Forums topic

XGN Interview Sumo Digital’s Craig Duncan and Steve Lycett Clears Up Confusion Star Confusion

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=anxlgQ-L66M[/youtube]

UPDATE: We’ve gotten word from Steve Lycett over at the SSMB under his S0L tag that the Confusion Star is an item and not an All Stars move after all. Steve also respons to the discussion of how review scores may turn out.

Well some proper depressing reading on here tonight…

Whatever the game scores at review, personally I will be proud of what we’ve achieved. I feel this is still the most accomplished game we’ve done at Sumo, especially given it’s an original game!

The weapon you are all talking about above is the Confusion Star. This is one of the standard weapons, you zap the AI and they’ll spin out, you cop it, and WOAH, watch the screen spin upside down!

I like to save it up, them fire it for maximum effect when someone is about to do a chicane

I’m sure Craig will be pleased to hear you are hanging on his every word


S0L

/UPDATE END

XGN caught up with Sumo Digital’s Craig Duncan recently to discuss Sonic & SEGA All Stars Racing. Nothing much is revealed that we didn’t already know apart from the name of one of the items which is seen below targeting Amy in the Banjo-Kazooie & Avatars revelation trailer.

The item is called the Confusion Star which turns the victim’s screen upside down for a short time and causes all sorts of madness by making the controls inverted.

Craig also explains the difference between this game and Mario Kart, how this game plays like more of a racer than Mario Kart does with it’s faster speed and it’s different drifting component.

We’ll keep you up to date with Sonic & SEGA All Stars Racing as we draw closer to its release next month.

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.

Steve Lycett Details ‘Rubber Banding’ In ASR

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b2tIFj97M6c[/youtube]

Steve Lycett under his S0L nickname has responded to rubber banding discussion’s over at the SEGA forums by detailing how it all works in Sonic & SEGA All Stars Racing.

Here’s Steve’s response –

You can enable catch-up for human players (in Multiplayer that is, both online and split-screen), but the aim is for the weapons and All-Stars to do the movement through the pack.

Or you can turn it off – and see who is actually better at racing 😛


S0L

So, very good news for gamers who hate ‘rubber banding’ in multi-player games like Mario Kart and should make for some interesting race’s online. No word on single player but the way Steve says “in multiplayer that is,” we can assume it is in single player, we’ll let you know if we hear any different.

Meanwhile, are you happy with Sumo Digital’s decision to make this optional in multiplayer? Let us know in the comments.

SEGA Netherlands Unveil Release Schedule For 2010

Sega-Sonic logo

SEGA Netherlands have unveiled their current release schedule for 2010 to Dutch Playstation site PSFocus.


* Bayonetta – January 8, 2010
* Vancouver 2010 – January 15, 2010
* Aliens vs. Predator – February 2010
* Planet 51 – February 2010
* Yakuza 3 – March 2010
* SEGA & Sonic All-Star Racing – early 2010
* Resonance of Fate – Spring 2010
* Iron Man 2 – Spring 2010
* Alpha Protocol – Spring 2010
* 2 Valkyria Chronicles (PSP) – Spring 2010
* Aliens: Colonial Marines – unknown

Despite rumours it looks like SEGA are still planning on releasing Aliens: Colonial Marines afterall and Valkyria Chronicles won’t be too long a wait.

Sonic & SEGA All Stars Racing is surprisingly still slated for an Early 2010 release, not even a release month is mentioned though in recent previews Sumo Digital staff have stated the game is still far from finished.

It looks like fans are going to have to stay patient in the meantime but if you really are eager then October’s Mario & Sonic at the Olympic Winter Games on Wii & DS should keep crossover enthusiasts busy for now.

Richard Jacques Still Very Much Involved In ASR

Richard Jacques

After yesterdays announcement that Bentley Jones’ new song So Much More will be the theme song for upcoming game Sonic & SEGA All Stars Racing some fans were worried that Richard Jacques involvement might not come to be after all but Sumo Digital’s Steve Lycett(AKA S0L) has laid those worries to rest.

In the SSMB’s Sonic & SEGA All Stars Racing topic Steve Lycett posted the following:

For those worried that Rich Jacques isn’t behind the music in the game – rest assured he very much is. All the menus are Mr Jacques creations, as well as other music used throughout the game.

Bentley’s tune is used for the end credits, and it’s pretty damned awesome. You can blame us for the extravagent Guitar solo used in it – we forced it on him 🙂


S0L

Look’s like the soundtrack is shaping up to be as fan pleasing as every other area of the game. Excited? We sure are.

ASR To Have 20 Characters And 24 Tracks?

gamestop walmart

U.S. retailers Gamestop and Walmart have updated their product pages for Sonic & SEGA All Stars Racing with some new tid-bits of information. If the information is true the game will have 20 characters and 24 tracks total.

Here’s the information as listed on their site’s –

* Party racing fun Battle it out in single player, challenge your friends in 4 player split-screen or compete in 8 player online action! Game modes include Grand Prix, Arcade and Time Attack.
* All your favorite racers Choose from 20 different characters from the Sonic & SEGA universe including Sonic, Tails, AiAi and Amigo.
* High Velocity Vehicles Every character drives their own unique vehicle including sports cars, bikes, monster trucks, planes and even a giant banana to perform special maneuvers!
* All-Star moves Race by a competitor with a variety of pick-up weapons (missiles, mines and other obstacles) or one of the 20 unique character moves such as Tails’ tornado, Samba’s conga line, and much more!
* Stunning visuals Race over medieval castle ramparts, under lush rainforest canopies and through bustling cityscapes as you battle through 24 challenging tracks from the Sonic and SEGA Universe.

The information looks like a legit press release of sorts that SEGA could have passed on to retailers but we’ll wait for a full confirmation from SEGA/Sumo Digital. In terms of the character and track totals, we could hopefully see more via downloadable content though if the leaked box art info is right plus Sumo Digital have previously expressed an interest in it so fingers crossed.

Chris Lewis’s Site Blocked Public Access After ASR Leak

S&SASR Xbox 360 box art

Look’s like someone revealed something they shouldn’t have, namely the above image. After yesterdays revelation of this ‘work in progress’ Sonic & SEGA All Stars box art Chris Lewis’s site has been blocked, no doubt by Sumo Digital and SEGA Europe.

Using the ‘down for everyone or just me’ tool you can see the site is blocked from everyone.

The mysterious disappearance of the website appears to add credibility to the fact that the image is leaked, but as with all things we can never be too sure. We just won’t be surprised if a popular bear/bird combination actually does appear in the game. The question is, WILL YOU?

JV247’s Video Interview with Sumo Digital’s Craig Duncan

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PleEZKLvgj8[/youtube]

French gaming website JV247 have recently interviewed Sumo Digital’s Craig Duncan about Sonic & SEGA All Stars Racing which you can check out in the video above.

In the interview Craig reveals –
– His favourite playable character is an unannounced old classic character
– When talking about Sonic Team he mentioned there is an unnanounced IP in the game.
– Downloadable content is a possibility.
– You earn SEGA Miles through in races which you can use to buy music, new tracks, characters and artwork.
– The final character and track list is a combination of what both Sumo Digital and SEGA wanted in. Each of them had to drop some of their choices.
– Alot of attention has been spent to detail on each IP so it’s perfect for the IP owners and the fans.
– Wii Wheel control is quote “excellent and we’ve just got that to the point where it’s starting to feel really good. A big fan of that”.
– Some new Sonic concept art behind him and parts of Tails concept art to the left.

JV247 Video interview link

Thanks to NinMicroSega at the SSMB for the link and thanks to Dusk the Crypt Keeper at the SSMB for converting the video to YouTube format.

New PS3/Wii/DS All Stars Racing Screens & Art

Fox Gungrave from fellow Sonic fan site Eversonic was recently invited by SEGA France to playtest all 4 console versions of Sonic & SEGA All Stars Racing and was given screenshots from the PS3, Wii and DS versions of the game aswell as pictures of some old and new artwork.

You can check out Eversonic’s preview here but be warned, it’s obviously in French.

Here’s the screenshots below:

DS –
ASR DS 1 ASR DS 2 ASR DS 3 ASR DS 4 ASR DS 5

Wii –
ASR Wii 1 ASR Wii 2 ASR Wii 3 ASR Wii 4 ASR Wii 5 ASR Wii 6

PS3 –
ASR PS3 1 ASR PS3 2 ASR PS3 3 ASR PS3 4 ASR PS3 5 ASR PS3 6 ASR PS3 7 ASR PS3 8

New art –
New ASR Art 1 New ASR Art 2 New ASR Art 3 New ASR Art 4

Steve Lycett Reveals 2 New ASR Screens And Amy Concept Art

Steve Lycett who began his developer diary for Sonic & SEGA All Stars Racing which we reported about earlier has revealed a couple of new screens and a piece of Amy Rose conept art to SEGA of America’s blog where they too have posted the diary entry.

Will we see more in the next diary entries? We’ll keep an eye out, for now here’s the pics –
New screen Amy

New screen Tails

Amy concept art

Sumo Digital: ASR Started With Sonic Running

steve-lycettSonic and SEGA All-Stars Racing’s Executive Producer, Steve Lycett, has written a post on SEGA Europe’s official blog discussing the upcoming mascot racing game. Although mostly an introductory post, Lycett mentions the genesis of the game, which was staged very much like Sonic R as opposed to Sonic Drift.

We started off with… Sonic running. Yes running. Not in a car. Not Super Sonic, but Sonic running full pelt around a test track.” Lycett revealed on the SEGA blog, “Next we added Eggman, riding in his Eggpod, but with robotic legs attached. He was running too. Then we added Tails. He was in his Tornado, the red biplane from Sonic 2. Next, we thought ‘It’s a racing game, lets try a car’ and dropped in Amy, in a nice bright pink Amymobile.

Other characters included Gilius Thunderhead from Golden Axe, riding atop a Chicken Leg creature. Despite how awesome this setup sounds, Lycett tells of development difficulties in maintaining the flow of gameplay.

…It wasn’t all that much fun to play. Our main problem was that all the characters were different sizes. Sonic was Sonic sized, but he was really small compared to Eggman and Gilius on their rides. Worse still was Tails’ Tornado – it was huge! The wings made it really wide.

Coders at Sumo managing to make Amy’s car drift threw up even more possibilities, hampered by the difficulty in giving Sonic a drift function on foot. “How do you get a Hedgehog to drift [like Amy’s car]? Worse still, how do you get dwarf in full battle armour on a parrot faced lizard to drift?

And hence, the result is everyone in a vehicle, as you see here. Lycett humorously asks fans angry about putting Sonic in a vehicle to direct their venom at the creators of Sonic Drift, but also throws down this final nugget of information, hinting at how the planes will handle in Sonic and SEGA All-Stars Racing:

For the flyers we didn’t want them to have too much of an unfair advantage, so we decided to treat these like hovercraft, they wouldn’t be affected by surfaces that slow the other cars down, but they also wouldn’t have high acceleration. As such Tails’ plane needed a re-design.

Interesting stuff. You can read the whole blog entry at SEGA’s Blognik.