- PlayStation 3
- Xbox 360
- 14 Nov 2006 [US]
- 24 Nov 2006 [EU]
- 21 Dec 2006 [JP]
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Sonic the Hedgehog's debut on the next line of consoles promises a 'return to form' for the blue blur, according to SONICTEAM and SEGA. With an emphasis on the team looking at basic gameplay functions and how the original Mega Drive titles played, it would be wise to assume that SONICTEAM are either trying to mimick the simplicity of the original, or simply revamp the series in such a way so that it once again has the edge of the original series yet fully utlises the 3D space. Either of which would be fine with us. Assuming it's done right. Sonic's landmark title to co-incide with his 15th Anniversary.
'SONIC the Hedgehog' was announced on 8th September 2005 in Japan, during a special SEGA conference detailing next-generation console projects. At this stage, the codename was "Sonic the Hedgehog", which has now become the actual project name. Yuji Naka specified how, with next-generation technology, SEGA have an opportunity to take Sonic to his roots and make a back-to-basics game that made the very original on Mega Drive so captivating. "With Sonic The Hedgehog, we have gone back to our starting point, more than 15-years ago, to reinvent the attitude and speed that made our hero a legend."
Shun Nakamura is the director of 'SONIC the Hedgehog'.
SONICTEAM have decided to use the Havok physics engine for development of 'SONIC the Hedgehog'. The Havok engine allows for a game world where collision detection and object interaction allows for dynamic environment. This is one of the first times the SEGA developer has openly used a third party engine for their work, and the implementation of the engine is interesting, as Havok has only previously been primarily used for First Person Shooting games. Use of the Havok engine was demonstrated at the Tokyo Game Show in 2005, where director Masato Nakamura was seen controlling Sonic to attack some robots into brick walls. Enemies have ragdoll physics, and certain objects can have different weights and can affect gameplay.
Sonic the Hedgehog
Sonic is back in the spotlight as he sets out to Soleanna on his world-wide travels, only to have to rescue the mysterious Princess Elise, a female lead who has been captured by Dr. Eggman, for the fat villain aims to derive the secrets of the 'flames of disaster' from her. Redesigned with longer limbs, Sonic looks as if he means business. During his search though, he realises he's being tracked by a bizarre white hedgehog; Silver the hedgehog, a hedgie referring to our blue dude with the 'tude as the 'Iblis trigger'... Will Sonic have a fight on two fronts?
Silver the Hedgehog
Silver is a time-traveller from around 200 years in the future after the present timeline of the game. Bit like the Terminator. First scene he goes up to Shadow and tell him he needs his clothes, boots and motorcycle (might be a lie). He has considerable psychokinetic powers, can manipulate nearly anything he wants to with said powers in various ways and is keeping tabs on Sonic as he believes he is the 'Iblis Trigger'. Good luck with that mate. Silver fights the evil immortal life form Iblis in the future with his best friend; Blaze the cat, but both fail ever single time for Iblis ressurects himself after defeat. 'Iblis' means 'Devil' in the Islamic region. Could he have 'done a Knuckles' and gotten crossed wires?
Shadow the Hedgehog
Emo the Hedgehog returns in Sonic's 15th Celebratory project. His role (Should he choose to accept it) is to save that bat chick Rouge first from Dr Eggman's base and keep tabs on the demon entity Mephiles when said demon Shadow-shaped entity escapes from his prison inside a relic known as the scepter of darkness, so he also is involved with his fellow hedgehog's. Rumours of him slitting his wrists, never calling his girlfriend and believing nobody understands him not confirmed.
Elise is the damsel in distress in Sonic the Hedgehog, where her posession of a Chaos Emerald and the secret of the flames of disaster she holds has caught the rather fat and bulging eye of Dr. Eggman. She also holds a dark secret apparently. Probably involves spending all of her daddy's credit cards and going out late at night with a local layabout called Kwame. Elise lends her mysterious powahs to Sonic when the blue hedgehog is carrying her through certain levels (Read; Tropical jungle and dusty desert)
Dr. Eggman's probably the second person we'd put in our list, but regrettably we've not seen a picture of the chubby gloater in regards to this project. His dastardly schemes involve making robots that actually look like they came out of The Matrix, i-Robot and Star Wars Episode I. And nicking off with the game's piece of crumpet, Princess Elise. She has a Chaos Emerald, and perhaps even more interestingly, she holds the secret of the flames of disaster but unless Eggman has the others that one won't be much use to him, will it? Gotta fathom out how to use the flames of disaster too. Well, at least he'll be able to put that IQ of 300 finally to use.
According to SONICTEAM's official Sonic the Hedgehog website, more familiar faces will be definitely making an appearance, including Tails, Knuckles, Blaze the Cat, Amy, Rouge and Omega. Their roles are not yet confirmed but since the three main hedgehogs are confirmed as playable, we may see the others as mere support characters.
Stages are set to be organised similar to Sonic Adventure, apparently. There will be Action Stages which will be your general Sonic style platform stages - spring platforms, loop the loops, speed pads, breakable creates, and floating platforms are all promised. These will be broken up by City Stages, wherein Sonic is given a free-roaming world and a large emphasis is placed on exploration. Could Sonic be required to search for items to aid his search for Elsie? 'Adventure Stages' as introduced in Sonic Adventure were largely seen as a unique and entertaining new way of bringing Sonic into 3D until it was scrapped in SA2 onwards.
Multiple routes are promised throughout each Action Stage in Sonic the Hedgehog. Some paths will be short and fast while others may contain extra bonuses. In movies we have seen, Sonic was able to open up new routes by using his skills or by defeating enemies in a certain way. Perhaps we could have a return to multi-tiered stages, with multiple paths that actually branch off, instead of in Sonic Heroes or Shadow the Hedgehog where they merely distracted you from the main path for about two seconds.
There are apparently areas in the game stages where Sonic will be able to reach speeds that are unattainable elsewhere. These are currently known as Mach Speed areas.
According to new information, Sonic will be able to ride on Eagles for transportation across certain stages. Similar to how it's done in Shadow the Hedgehog. Which, to be honest, was a slightly rubbish feature anyway. But hey. Better than Team Karting.
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