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.
In the tradition of Sonic Amateur Games Expo comes a fan fiction reading of the greatest Sonic story ever told by the greatest Sonic fan in existence, SonicFan. This year InstantSonic, Katzu Niku, GeneHF, Bartman3010, Overlord, OverlyEquipped, Neo Hazard and of course DavidTL bring you a live (Now pre-recorded on YouTube!) read of chapter 7 of Sonic Fights Robotnik!
Last weekend saw an extravaganza of rarely seen footage of more multiplayer madness with SEGA featuring me and some of my friends. Last time we went through several Sonic games
from the Game Boy Advance line-up rummaging for chao, racing to the finish, exchanging fists and more. This time we’ve not only gone back to Sonic Advance 3
with a full house of four players, we also got to check out the multiplayer mode of the Game Boy Advance conversion of Jet Set Radio
from the developers behind the GBA version of Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 2
. Finally our last surprise was us racing in the future with San Francisco Rush 2049
on SEGA Dreamcast.
Also appearing only on Twitch is a silent longplay of Knuckles’ Chaotix
running at 60 frames per second as part of SEGAbits’ 32X month. If you missed out on these liveshowings, be sure to subscribe to us on Twitch
for updates when we go live again or to catch up on our previous showings.
On our most recent SEGA Channel Retro stream, we got to check out the DLC for the recently released Legend of Zelda Zone for Sonic Lost World. If you think that’s old news, then how about going old school? We also took a look back at SEGA’s attempts at bringing the blue blur to PC with sister site SEGAbits during their Genesis month with a look at Sonic & Knuckles Collection and Sonic 3D Blast (Or Flickies Island if you’re THAT guy…) complete with the awkward bonus stages. We even got a look at SEGA Smash Pack 1 and 2 on PC that features an interesting, exclusive screen resolution for the 2 Player VS. mode in Sonic the Hedgehog 2. All this and more is currently rehosted on our YouTube channel. You can also watch the original, uncut stream on our Twitch page here.
Oh dear, I got stuck with the Monday Links this week. You know that new Sonic game that everyone is talking about? Yes. No? Well, theres still not much to talk about, or Sonic Boom, or much of anything Sonic lately, and you probably don’t want to talk about sports either. In fact I’ve been busy messing around Phantasy Star Online despite being over 14 years too late, and I haven’t moved on to Phantasy Star Online 2. Why? It was something I had missed out on when it came out for the Drreamcast and Gamecube. Since I had broadband adapters for each, and my curiosity in private servers piqued, I wanted to take a look to see what I had missed.
The game’s aesthetics and gameplay structure were the main reason for me wanting to look back at this outdated RPG, because it used a theme thoat most RPGs have not tried to work with, and most would follow the large, open world that World of Warcraft popularized. In fact several of them had an identity crisis to the point that you’d think the developers just wanted to get away with making World of Warcraft. But not Phantasy Star Online, a game that took Sega’s established RPG series and not only gave it a multiplayer component but emphasized real-time action where you are actively engaged in battle, and avoiding damage and looking for enemy weakpoints requires creative strategy. This is probably the best non-Sonic game from Sonic Team, at least in my eyes. You’re still not going to be won over by the story, and it is absolutely difficult for newcomers to find others to play with online, but it certainly reached a technical marvel and helped kickstart a genre to what was popularized by its successors. Theres also fun to be had by playing the game Single Player, but the social element definitely makes up half the game through social interaction, item trading, and planning with your teammates on what to do.
My only handicap that I am personally following is to play this game as blind as possible. I’m not going to bother with item duping, I know Force classes are utterly broken, and I don’t want to consult a wiki to generate the best possible outcome for my character(s). I want to try to match my experience with the game similar to how others played the game back when it came out. Its incredible how the evolution of game design and social interaction has changed the way we play the game, and for a game like Phantasy Star Online, the experience does not match with a modern massive multiplayer environment. But to get the most out of the game, its best to look at why the game had it’s strengths in the first place. Its not entirely possible, and I do want to try and avoid the technical hurdles the game has, because there’s nothing quite like it out there. I want to see about doing an annual check in with the game as well as have more video podcasts with people who played the game before sharing their experiences. Because honestly? I truly regret letting it pass by me, even with the paid subscription fees involved.
Now, lets take a look at the headlines for Monday.
The other site staff wanted me to put this video in this week’s Monday Links. Considering the content of the video, I’d like to apologize on everyone’s behalf for putting it here. I’m sorry. I’m so, so very sorry.
- Guess Who reviewed the 3DS version of Sonic Lost World and greatly regrets doing so [Review]
- Missed some of our Vidya Retro streams? Catch up on some [Highlights]
- A new version of Sonic Worlds Delta has been released for MMF2/Fusion 2.5 [The Barrel Update]
- The fifth release of Sonic ERaZor is here [Yup, that still exists]
- My Life with SEGA has released a sequel to The Next Level [No Limits]
- The winner of the SEGAbits Summer of Art/Season of Colors contest has been revealed [Ryo Hazuki would want it]
- SEGA announced a new Alien game, this one being a survival horror title called Alien: Isolation [Spooky scary]
- Rhythm Thief, a 3DS game barely anyone knew about, is now available on iOS. [MICROTRANSACTIONS YAY]