It’s here, the brand new side-scrolling Sonic game! No, not Sonic Mania. It’s Sonic Boom: Fire & Ice for the Nintendo 3DS! In this SEGA News Bits, Barry shares with George, and our viewing audience, his thoughts on the game. Did SEGA and Sanzaru Games learn their lesson from Sonic Boom: Shattered Crystal? In the comments below, let us know what you think of Sonic Boom: Fire & Ice! Also, don’t hate Barry.
SEGA News Bits is a production of SEGAbits, covering all things SEGA and Sonic the Hedgehog. When we touch on Sonic stories, you’ll be seeing them here on Sonic Retro as well. If you enjoyed this episode of the SEGA News Bits, make sure to subscribe to our YouTube channel and never miss an episode!
It’s been a pretty long time since Sonic Boom: Fire & Ice was last shown to the public. After it was delayed there was a bit of a drought with no new footage or info whatsoever. That’s changed now though as SEGA just released a new trailer for E3 2016 and we can finally confirm that, yup, it still looks like a Sonic Boom game.
It does look like there is some added variety with the new bosses and shoot-em-up sections, but aside from that the game looks like more of Sonic Boom: Shattered Crystal. Which probably isn’t a good thing seeing how Shattered Crystal wasn’t that great. Still, the game will be playable at E3 next week so we’ll probably be able to see if Sanzaru has tried to make Fire & Ice much of an improvement over its prequel when new gameplay footage from the event gets put up online.
Fire & Ice will be released on September 27th, 2016 exclusively for Nintendo 3DS and will have a special Launch Edition in the US. The special edition will include a DVD with three episodes from the Sonic Boom TV show, which is surprisingly decent and worth taking a look at if you haven’t yet.
Update: The official Sonic Youtube account has uploaded the trailer to Youtube, and mentions in the description that “[a] number of notable improvements are being made to the game, including enhanced level designs built for speed, better functionality, and all-new Fire & Ice gameplay mechanics.”
Update: Of course right after I put up this article I realize that Sonic 4: Episode 1 was delayed by a few months. Welp. Still, at least this time it wasn’t because there was a public outcry.
What do you get when you mix fire and ice? Apparently SEGA realizing that releasing yet another unfinished Sonic game is a bad idea. For the first time ever (seriously, correct me if I’m wrong on this cause I can’t think of any other time when SEGA’s done this) the company has delayed a Sonic game in order to make sure that it’s polished enough for release, with Sonic Boom: Fire & Ice now releasing in 2016 “when it’s ready”. You know, as opposed to previously released Sonic games that clearly weren’t ready for release.
It’s always been pretty clear that Sonic games are often rushed to make the deadline, even back with Sonic 3 & Knuckles when they split the game into two releases due to time constraints. So SEGA actually letting the developers take their time to finish the game is hopefully not just a one time thing. So it is a little reassuring that SEGA’s blog post mentions that they think that making sure a game is ready for release isn’t just important for Fire & Ice, but also all future Sonic games. We hope that that’s true, cause we really, really don’t want another Sonic 2006 or Rise of Lyric.
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.
SEGAbits interviews Mat Kraemer of Sanzaru Games, developer of Sonic Boom: Shattered Crystal
This week on the Swingin’ Report Show podcast Barry and George are joined by Mat Kraemer, Lead Designer at Sanzaru Games, developer of Sonic Boom: Shattered Crystal for the Nintendo 3DS. Topics covered include the development process of the handheld title, how Sanzaru interacted with various teams including the TV show crew and the team at Big Red Button, what Sonic games Sanzaru looked to for inspiration, and Mat’s favorite classic SEGA games and consoles.
There has been a lot of talk about the Sonic Boom franchise this past week, so it was great to sit down with Mat to learn more about how the 3DS game came to be. Hey! Why are you still reading this when you should be listening?
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According to Nintendo World Report, a demo of Sonic Boom: Shattered Crystal will be released on the eShop on November 4th. It isn’t known if or when a demo of its Wii U counterpart Rise of Lyric will also be released or if this is the same demo that was playable at events like Sonic Boom or PAX.
The site also recorded a playthrough of the Sonic Boom demo with direct feed audio, so you can also listen to what the game’s music is like. They recorded some gameplay of the Rise of Lyric demo as well, which can be seen after the jump.
New Trailer for Sonic Boom: Rise of Lyric and Shattered Crystal Shows Shadow and Metal Sonic
The most notable thing this trailer shows is more of Shadow and Metal Sonic, who appear in both games as either bosses or rivals to race against. Also it has overly dramatic music and an ancient evil because why not.
While we got a new trailer for Sonic Boom: Rise of Lyric during Gamescom, we’ve gotten one for series’ handheld entry Shattered Crystal from PAX Prime. This trailer primarily shows off the game’s CG cutscenes, which shows Amy being kidnapped by Lyric, along with small snippets of gameplay showcasing a variety of levels.
And like how Metal Sonic popped up at the end of the Rise of Lyric trailer, Shadow makes an appearance in this one. Unlike Metal Sonic, his design has been affected somewhat by Sonic Boom’s style. It also seems like he has a new voice, because who cares about consistency anyway?
SDCC 2014: Box-art and Release Dates for Sonic Boom: Rise of Lyric and Shattered Crystal Revealed
We already knew that both Sonic Boom games will be coming out in this November, but now we know when exactly we can expect them to be in stores. In the US Sonic Boom: Rise of Lyric will be released on November 18th, while Shattered Crystal will be out a week earlier on November 11th. We don’t know yet when the games will be released in Europe, but this post will be updated when we do.
Along with these dates SEGA released the box covers as well, both of which feature Sonic looking at the customer and doing something potentially threatening. The Wii U box has a Nintendo Network logo on it, meaning the game does have some sort of online functionality.
[Source: SEGA Blog]
As part of E3 2014, Nintendo put up a new trailer for the 3DS’ Sonic Boom: Shattered Crystal. Developed by Sanzaru Games, the game more than enough resembles a passing glance to other Sonic handheld titles, namely anything DIMPS developed from Sonic Rush to Sonic Generations (3DS). The game differs from its Wii U counterpart in that it’s an entirely different adventure where the new villain Lyric has kidnapped Amy. Filling her place in the team is series newcomer
The design of the game is much closer to an exploration style (think a Metroidvania, but not so complex) where using Sonic, Tails, Knuckles or Sticks can unlock new areas to explore. The energy whips also prominently feature as a means of combat or progressing through the stage. The game is set to hit this November.