Its existence has been around the rumor mill for a bit of time, but SEGA today officially confirmed Sonic Runners as a 2015 title. But rather than being the next main line Sonic title from Japan, Sonic Runners was also confirmed as a mobile title.
No other details of the game were shown at the recent event at SEGA Joypolis. Media of the game floating around right now is false as SEGA have not released any sort of promotional assets, but we’ll no doubt see them in time and mock that it may very well be a touched up Sonic Dash/Sonic Storybook title hybrid.
Not the most exciting bit of news, but it’s a little something to kick off your Sunday morning and wind down 2014.
SEGAbits and Sonic Retro team up to bring you a podcast focused on SEGA’s new Sonic Boom franchise! Hosted by Barry the Nomad of SEGAbits.com and David the Lurker of SonicRetro.org, Boom Talkalaka features discussion of the many aspects of Sonic Boom – from comics and episodes of the cartoon, to the video games and toys.
In the second episode, Barry and David review the latest episodes of the TV show through to “Eggheads”, 2014’s final episode, discuss the direction the comic book is taking, and Barry shares his thoughts on the 3DS and Wii U games.
Give the show a listen and in the comments tell us what you think! If you have any questions or comments you want David to read on the next episode, leave your message here with the subject line “Boom-Grams”: http://segabits.com/contact/
The holidays are a special time. Some enjoy the winding down the beginning of winter brings, others enjoy punching people for that huge TV you probably didn’t need but it’s cheap so why not. Either way, for better or for worse, the holidays mean spending time with friends and family. This includes super villains like our favorite ovum-shaped robot overlord, Dr. Ivo “Eggman” Robotnik.
Continuing off from a series of Christmas movies starring Sonic and his friends (and relatives) begun in 2011, Sonic’s Christmas festivities hit a swerve when Dr. Eggman crashes the party and invites the cast to spend time with his own family. As with the other two, the writing is funny and the voice acting is pretty good, and (at least for me), I kind of enjoy the scribbled art look the movies sport. Great work by the folks at Balena productions.
Regardless of which holiday you’re celebrating, we here at Sonic Retro also wish all of you a happy holidays and to enjoy yourselves a Sonic game or two during this break. But not Sonic Boom. Even Santa’s mischievous counterpart Krampus wouldn’t be that cruel.
Stealth, one half of the brains behind the recent mobile remasters of Sonic 1 and Sonic 2, announced he’s looking to train people into using his own Head Cannon Game Engine (HCGE.) Before you go running in hoping to recreate Sonic 3 or some other title, Stealth has the strict requirement that, regardless of skill level, applicants must dedicate themselves to this project and not just flake out when the going gets tough.
Early on, Stealth will work alongside approved applicants and teach how to run with the engine. As time goes on, Stealth will roll back and allow autonomy to take over. Project HC is focused as being a Sonic game (which most around here should be familiar with) in the same general area as Sonic Megamix, at least to get the ball rolling.
Currently, applications are open to all positions like programmers, musicians, artists, etc. For more information on the project and how to formally submit an application, hit up this lovely link.
Tool Assisted Speedruns, or TAS, are quite a fun thing to see. Taking advantage of the very coding of the game, players are able to perform some incredibly hilarious and insane tricks to blaze through games. So when it comes to Sonic 3, a game most of us still hold highly as the pinnacle of Sonic, being burned right through in a staggering time of 26’53”, you know things are going to get interesting.
Using our own disassembly of the game, runners Aglar and marzojr performed a run that resulted in a three-minute time improvement over the previous record set four years ago, and the first time in seven years the two ran through the whole game in such a manner. The video above features a modification that keeps Sonic on screen at all times, even when not on camera, so we can see what sort of nonsense he’s up to. A video without Sonic being omnipresent can be found here.
The authors published commentaries on the run can be found here as well, detailing the parameters of their run. If you’re hungry for something a little more insane, look below for a Hyper Sonic version of the run.
Sonic Boom has certainly been a source of contention from many fans of the franchise, both old and new. Presented as a new branch of the Sonic series primarily led by the people at SEGA of America, it’s hard to argue the experiment has won any favors from longtime fans. While the TV show has been performing well, the 3DS game didn’t turn into anything more than a mediocre platformer. All that’s left to talk about is the Wii U game.
Unfortunately, Sonic Boom: Rise of Lyric is the weakest element in the Boom bandwagon. The title shows off way too many glaring issues that seem as if the developers were rushing to get the game out the door in time for the TV show’s premiere, and boy, we got stuck with another unfortunate misstep for the blue blur. Plagued with infinite jump glitches, weird collision bugs, opportunities to soft lock the game and some of the worst special effects seen in the CryEngine…wait, the CryEngine 3? The same one powering performance hungry games such as the Crysis series? Indeed, the same one, only now the game is running poorly optimized for the Wii U and has some of the most awkward special effects in a modern 3D game.
I don’t doubt that the engine could work well for Sonic providing an open world environment, but that kind of experience is not delivered well here. Now, some of you arm chair experts are probably sitting there saying the game is terrible due to Sonic losing his speed, turning the game into a glorified beat-em up and changing the iconic style of the character, the plot and all the things that make Sonic work. But that couldn’t be further from the point on why exactly this game is bad.
While the verdict on Sonic Boom: Rise of Lyric is pretty clear at this point, not much attention has been given to its 3DS counterpart Shattered Crystal. Made by Sly Cooper developer Sanzaru Games, this title tries to add kinda-Metroid-like elements while having a hero switching mechanic similar to Sonic Heroes. Unlike the Wii U version, SEGA was confident enough to put up a demo of the game on the eShop before release. And while it wasn’t particularly impressive, the sample given was pretty decent. So the question is if the full game holds up.
So here’s the deal with this Sonic game: it’s not really much like a normal Sonic game. Rather than being about trying to take the fastest path to the finish, a lot of time is spent exploring the levels as you can collect a bunch of crystal fragments and blueprints in most of them. These also take a lot longer to finish than your usual Sonic stage, as they can easily take up to 15 minutes to complete if you’re looking around for collectables. You can also switch between four characters in these stages: Sonic, Tails, Knuckles and newcomer Sticks, all of whom work very differently from past games. Continue Reading