Gamespot have put out a new hands-on preview of the game, they seem pretty positive - http://uk.gamespot.com/xbox360/sports/sonicfreeriders/news.html?sid=6272125&tag=topslot;img;4&mode=previews
The game still finds Sonic and friends, both old and new, racing against each other on futuristic tracks peppered with shortcuts to discover, coins to collect, and power-ups to use against the competition.
For how many more years are the press going to make this mistake, this is Sonic not Mario damn it!
Clearly, this means that the entire main series is actually set in ancient China. Fans of the Storybook series rejoice?
Also, to its credit, the article does mention rings later on.
What I find slightly less amusing than that, but still a little funny, is that every preview of Free Riders that exists seems to be under the impression that Mario Kart-style powerups have been in the Riders series since day one. I mean, sure, there were a couple of things you could get from capsules, but nothing like bowling balls or ink.
Bowling ball was in the first Riders and in the second too if I recall correctly, first one also had a ball and chain item that slowed you down when you got it. As Blue Blood said, paint was in ZG too.
I remember the bowling ball/bomb thing, now that I think about it, I had the ball-and-chain in mind when I posted, but I'm drawing a complete blank on the paint in Zero Gravity for some reason. I haven't played it for a while, but still. Weird.
Game Spot have another preview video up today with a demonstration by a SEGA representative and a side-line interview with David Allen (SoA Brand Manager.) The game was featured during their 'On The Spot' show and sports some lovely background elevator music... that loops for the entire six minute preview.
Right now, it's not really looking like my cup of tea. From what the brand manager guy is saying, it sounds like they're just dragging content from the previous two titles without adding much extra. I already own the previous Riders games- Kinect is expensive and uninteresting in my books, so why should this compilation of what I already own convince me to buy it? =X
Not only that, but the brand manager himself has stated that the team are also rushing development to get it 100% complete and ready for the Kinect launch in November. A good game isn't one that's rushed, which is ironic as SEGA themselves has delayed Sonic 4. Right now, this game is looking and sounding like a cheap SEGA cash-in to me (which to be honest, isn't unusual from them.)