Kickstarter has a rich history of popular board games. Titles such as Exploding Kittens, Rising Sun or Zombicide: Black Plague (all funded on KS) are often known even by persons who are not passionate about board games. At the beginning of March 2018 another project gathered enough supporters (and their $$$) to become real – Sonic the Hedgehog Battle Racers, by team S7 Games (formerly known as Shinobi 7). And from the very beginning, it had some promising looking features – aesthetically presentable figures of playable characters, the theme of “racing game” quite fitting to the main hero of the series, the random construction of the board – enough to make the project interesting for fans of board games and Sonic the Hedgehog universe. Now the time has come to verify promises and check the game in practice – let’s get busy!
Disclaimer – this review is written based on Kickstarter “Hyper Pledge” variant of the game, with all possible add-ons.
If there’s one universal aspect people can agree upon when it comes to the Sonic the Hedgehog series, it’s that the music has always been pretty darn good. This is true even for Sonic 2006, a game which has become the punching bag for the series since…well, 2006. For many, one of the highlights to that soundtrack is Silver’s theme, “Dreams of an Absolution.” The man who sung his heart out on that track all those years ago, Bentley Jones, revisited the track just in time for Sonic’s 28th anniversary. And he made a music video to go with it!
Surprising? Yes! The second Wreck-it Ralph movie, Ralph Breaks the Internet takes a sharp turn from the world of video games to exploring the realm of social media and online entertainment. Oh and the fact that Disney now practically owns everything from Marvel to Star Wars.
However recent ads for the movie show that there will still be at least one appearance of the blue blur Sonic as he explains the definition of wi-fi to Ralph as seen in ad spots recently surfaced to promote the movie as seen in the TV ad above, re-hosted on YouTube via the channel “The José Critic”. The film’s director Rich Moore already confirmed earlier that Sonic would re-appear after responding to a user on Twitter. It wasn’t until recently that footage began to surface showcasing cameos of popular gaming mascots.
Ralph Breaks the Internet is set for release in theaters next month on November 21st in the US and November 30th in the UK. Release date may vary by territory.
EDIT: Revised release date information.
Yesterday it was announced that Sonic the Hedgehog would in fact be seeing a new game in 2018 – the twist being that it was a board game. On this SEGA News Bits, George takes a closer look at the Kickstarter for Sonic the Hedgehog: Battle Racers and points out the positive and negatives of the campaign and if the $100 price tag is worth it.
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Sonic is no stranger to board games, but this latest outing looks to be the most ambitious yet. So much so, that the company behind the production, Shinobi 7, has just launched a Kickstarter to fund their new game. There’s quite a lot to take in from the Sonic the Hedgehog: Battle Racers page, namely that the game features up to 5 playable characters, each with their own abilities and stats, and that the game features interchangeable tiles to vary up play, keeping it fresh each time.
The biggest thing to note, as with any Kickstarter, is what you’re actually buying. As of this writing, there’s only one tier for rewards, and that’s set at a somewhat pricey $100. Dropping that dough nets you a copy of the game, an exclusive Super Sonic character, and any “freebie” stretch goals that are unlocked. Speaking of which, stretch goals include more characters like Shadow and Blaze, though it’s worth noting that if they’re unlocked, you’ll have to pay more to actually obtain them.
The Battle Racers Kickstarter goes into more detail about how the game plays, so if that tickles your fancy, you can check it out. If funded, the game is expected to ship in October of this year.
I’ve always loved the Sonic the Hedgehog children’s books from the 90s, from the junior novelizations to the look and find books to the guide books filled with inaccuracies. The fine folks at Penguin Random House are reviving the world of Sonic the Hedgehog children’s books with three new titles, due out March 6, 2018, as well as an adult coloring book from Archie Sonic legend Patrick Spaziante (the coloring book releases earlier than the others, on October 17, 2017). Check out the covers below as well as full descriptions and pre-order links. “Sonic and the Tales of Deception” sounds especially interesting, as it tells three short stories and will feature full color illustrations from Ian McGinty. Continue Reading
Fastest Food Alive returns with one of the most popular Sonic the Hedgehog food products of all time. That’s right, it’s Blue Bunny’s Sonic bar with GUMBALL EYES! Quit reading and watch as we unwrap this famous Sonic foodstuff, looking back on the history of the bar and seeing just how badly they messed up the eyes.
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The soundtrack for SNATCHER, Hideo Kojima’s cult-classic adventure game, is coming to vinyl later this year from Ship to Shore PhonoCo. Various SNATCHER OSTs have been released before, but this marks the first time the SEGA CD version soundtrack has been made officially available. This release takes the in-game songs and puts them together with all of the songs from the Zoom Tracks album, and also includes inserts of rare official SNATCHER artwork.
From Ship to Shore’s website…
Ship to Shore PhonoCo is proud to continue its relationship with Konami Digital Entertainment with the first ever official release of the SNATCHER soundtrack. Originally released for the PC-8801 in Japan, SNATCHER was later localized into English and ported to the ill-fated Sega CD. Over the years, the game (and its music) have developed an indellible cult following that persists to this day!
The double LP, coming in four color variants, can be pre-ordered from Ship to Shore and The Yetee, and is set to be released this March.
Thanks to the next-gen art dealers at Cook & Becker, we have a first look at the upcoming Sonic The Hedgehog 25th Anniversary art book via an in-depth gallery of images as well as a full press release. So let’s get down to it! The art book, the first ever official art book and design history for the long running series, encapsulates 25 years of history. The book will be made available in a limited Special Collector’s Edition as well as a Standard Hardcover Edition. The Special Collector’s Edition features an outer box, a special inner sleeve that folds into a display stand for the book and an exclusive newly drawn matted art giclee print by Sonic Team’s Yuji Uekawa. The Collector’s Edition is limited to 2,500 copies and sells for $120/€120 respectively. As a pre-order bonus, Cook & Becker offers a 10% discount on the Collector’s Edition if it is ordered before February 2017. The Standard Edition, meanwhile, retails for $45/€45 and consists of the book itself.
Let’s talk about the book! Officially licensed, the book (310mm H x 275mm W) will feature 200+ pages of images and text, including interviews with key Sonic designers including Yuji Naka, Takashi Iizuka and Yuji Uekawa. As seen in the image gallery below, you can expect to find concept art, promotional art, 3D renders, box art and – as revealed in our recent article – original official art and rare collectibles submitted by fans (pending approval from Cook & Becker and SEGA, of course).
After the break, check out a full press release detailing the book as well as a gallery of several images showing off the ins and outs of the book as well as the Special Collector’s Edition. Don’t forget to pre-order the book today at the official Cook & Becker site! Continue Reading
If you haven’t already heard, next-gen art dealers Cook & Becker plan to release a “Sonic the Hedgehog 25th Anniversary Art Book”. The book will cover the history of Sonic and will include design sketches, official character illustrations, in-game art, pixel art, rare promotional art and game box art. While SEGA has provided Cook & Becker with many great art assets from the company archives, as is the case with original art spanning 25 years there is always more out there in private collections.
Cook & Becker reached out to us asking if we would ask you, the fans, to lend a hand if you can. As the book enters the final stages of design, there is little under a month left before the window closes on what can appear in the book and we are asking any fans with cool rare retro merchandise, rare original promotional art and rare manual scans to reach out to Cook & Becker via their contact page or email maarten [at] candb.com. Cook & Becker is looking for high res photos and scans of what they may not already have. They will credit anyone in the book that sends in material that gets included. I know, for example, that there is some really great original art from the late SEGA Genesis-era artist Greg Martin in several collections.
It should be noted that Cook & Becker are NOT looking for fan art, only rare and original official pieces of artwork and collectibles. More news on Cook & Becker’s book to come, so stay tuned!