If you frequent around the Sonic community a fair bit, you’ll know that the reception of Sonic’s latest foray into marketing gimmicks didn’t exactly take well with the fans (though the TV show is worth your time for some good mindless fun.) With the release of sales figures from SEGA, we can now see how this new splinter brand performed, and the news is quite dreadful with the games pulling in over a combined 490,000.
Yes, both Shattered Crystal and Rise of Lyric combined could barely claw their way to over a half-million units, making them some of the worst performing Sonic games, possibly of all time. A hard metric to gauge given strange releases on Game Gear, NeoGeo Pocket Color, and even taco-shaped mobile the N-Gage, but easily the worst in modern times.
Of course, the lukewarm-to-negative reception of the Wii U and 3DS variants, as well as (now-patched) goofy levels of glitches certainly didn’t help the matter, drawing Rise of Lyric frequent contention with Sonic 2006 for the worst in the series.
Worse still is the figure is in the nebulous realm of units actually sold to customers or the total combined units sitting out on store shelves or boxes in the back. So the 490,000 figure may very well be a “best case” scenario.
Previously, Sonic Lost World sold 718,000 units combined, as a marker of the series trend on the Wii U and 3DS and were lukewarmly received. Prior to Lost World, Sonic Colors performed better at over two million units sold, but with the caveat that the Wii and DS had monstrous consumer bases by 2010.
The current downtrend for Sonic and the continued diminishing returns in quality are signs that maybe it’s time SEGA seriously considers putting the Sonic brand on hiatus for a few years (see Capcom with Mega Man… hopefully) or completely overhaul the creative process at Sonic Team (read: fire some people, even the studio head.) But, with the likes of Sonic Runners already on the horizon, it looks like regardless of reception, SEGA will run Sonic full speed right off the edge and into one of the series’ infamous bottomless pits.
It seems that Wii U owners are getting a new Sonic-related Virtual Console release in Sonic Advance. At least, in Japan only. For the time being. Maybe.
There’s currently no news on whether this will see release in other territories as of yet, or whether there are any plans to release the rest of the trilogy on the service – as is par for the course with most Virtual Console releases, unfortunately. So there may be some waiting for the rest of us.
It’ll be available on the Japanese eShop as of next week, priced at ¥702 (meaning roughly £3.90/$5.90/€5.15).
Also Mega Man & Bass is coming out over there too next week. Let’s hope we see that, too.
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.
[The following article was written by site member GerbilSoft]
It’s that time again: GerbilSoft gives away new Sonic games! This time, it’s Sonic Boom for Wii U and Nintendo 3DS.
The rules are simple. Send an email to me, GerbilSoft, with answers to the four questions listed below (and optionally the fifth question). If you answer all four questions correctly, you qualify for a chance to win one of these two games:
Two winners will be selected; the odds of winning depend on the number of correct entries. Official Rules:
Participants will send their answers to the four questions below (plus optional fifth question) to [email protected], with subject: “Sonic Retro’s Sonic Boom Giveaway”. Entries must be sent by2014/11/06 11:59 PM EST (2014/11/07 04:59 AM UTC). (DON’T POST YOUR ANSWERS IN THE COMMENTS!)
The giveaway is open to all legal residents (13 years of age or older) of the United States, Canada (except Quebec), United Kingdom, and Australia (except ACT). Other countries may be eligible; check your local regulations.
Only one entry per person; make sure your answers are correct before you send your email!
Sonic Retro, Sega Retro, and SEGAbits staff are not eligible to participate.
Two winners will be randomly selected from all entries that have the correct answers for the 4 main trivia questions. If no one got all four correct, then two will be selected for 3 out of 4, etc. If no one got any answers right, then you all suck and the contest will start over with new questions.
Winners will be announced within two days after the contest closes, and they will be contacted with regards to what game they would like to receive.
Prizes will be new games delivered to the winners using Amazon.
PLEASE NOTE: Due to some issues with the Sonic Lost World contest, I will be disqualifying anyone who:
Attempts to submit multiple entries in order to skew the odds in their favor. (This is only for users who maliciously send tons of entries; accidentally sending one or two duplicate emails will not be a problem.)
Complains about the choice of platform(s) and/or game(s) for this giveaway.
THE TRIVIA QUESTIONS:
If you want to win GerbilSoft’s Sonic Games, you just have to answer these four trivia questions. (The fifth one is a bonus question that won’t count for anything but bragging rights.) Send your answers to [email protected], with subject: “Sonic Retro’s Sonic Boom Giveaway”. (Confirmation emails won’t be sent; if you want a confirmation, enable the “Return Receipt” flag in your email client.) Entries must be received by 2014/11/06 11:59 PM EST (2014/11/07 04:59 AM UTC).
When Sonic Adventure 2 was ported to GameCube, one of the options on the main menu was removed. Which option was this?
What two Game Gear Sonic games were not released on cartridge outside of Japan?
What assembly language do you need to know to hack the Sonic Advance series?
SEGA’s Sonic Boom event took place this past Saturday in New York, and I was able to attend, representing both Sonic Retro and SEGAbits. The whole night was a lot of fun, and it was great to meet so many people responsible for one of my favorite SEGA franchises. Stephen Frost did an excellent job hosting the show. All the guests were friendly and willing to go above and beyond for fans, most notably Ted Poley and Mike Pollock who were able to stick around and sign additional autographs outside their sessions. If you’re interested in reading how the night unfolded, make sure to check out my impressions over at SEGAbits.
What made this year’s Sonic Boom unique from previous years was the focus on SEGA West’s Sonic Boom franchise. Outside of the live music, which featured tracks from Sonic Adventure through to Sonic Lost World, and Iizuka being present, the night was mostly about Sonic Boom. All the bases were covered, with Archie Sonic artist Tracy Yardley manning a busy table featuring a convention exclusive Sonic Boom poster for sale, and guests from TOMY, Sanzaru Games Inc., BigRedButton Entertainment, and the full voice cast doing interviews and signing autographs. Fans expecting a peek at what Sonic Team are up to were out of luck, but for those who wanted to learn more about SEGA’s new branch in the Sonic franchise, the night did not disappoint. I can easily say that I am far more excited for the 3DS version and the cartoon show now, though the Wii U version and the comic book are still a gray area. Sonic Boom: Rise of Lyric looks far better in person, however I’m not sure how well the game will be paced, and the camera in the speed sections needs work. The comic book is sure to have great art, but I’m not sure how the stories will play out. Still, following the event I am more sold on Sonic Boom now than I was before.
Being the only Sonic Retro writer in attendance this year, I’ll admit to feeling a bit like a lone wolf for the first half of the night. Thankfully, I came across several Sonic and SEGA fan site and YouTube channel owners which included SEGA Driven‘s SonicYoda, The Sonic Stadium‘s T-Bird, Tails’ Channel’s Matt, SomeCallMeJohnny, and the Find The Computer Room team. It was great to meet these guys in person, and I was glad to find such a large pocket of people at Sonic Boom who liked seeing Shadow getting kicked in the face, thought mid-20s hipster Chris Thorndyke is the greatest idea for a cosplay, and believed Big the Cat deserved his own game (okay, maybe I’m the only one who believes that last one).
After the break, check out a gallery of photos from the night, and there’s also those additional impressions I mentioned *cough cough*. Continue Reading
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. Continue Reading
As you could expect from the Sonic Boom event, a new trailer for the TV show isn’t the only new Sonic thing that got revealed today. SEGA also showed a new trailer showing gameplay and cutscenes from both upcoming Sonic Boom games: Rise of Lyric for Wii U and Shattered Crystal for 3DS.
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.
So SEGA showed some new gameplay of both Sonic Boom games at Tokyo Game Show today. First up is the new Shattered Crystal level they showed off:
The video shows a new tropical-themed level, with the player once again dashing through blocks, swinging over pits with some electric whip thing and switching characters to get past certain obstacles. Overall it’s not really that different from what has been shown in other demos already aside from the setting.
The Rise of Lyric gameplay however shows a side-scrolling level in which Knuckles and Amy go underground to save some mine workers. Each character explores a different part of the level, with the player being able to switch between them at any time to use their special abilities whenever it is necessary. Also there’s some more fighting.
[Source: Woun from Sonic Stadium]
While Penny Arcade Expo allowed the general public to play Sonic Boom, Hatsune Miku Project Diva F 2nd and Alien Isolation, along with Bayonetta 2 showcased by Nintendo, very little was new to those looking for new information, which included the updated Sonic Boom demo which unfortunately did not make it to the event. This left very little for new SEGA news for fans to pick apart. That is until you factor in Sonic’s involvement in the upcoming release of Super Smash Bros. for Wii U and 3DS. Nintendo was showing off both versions for the general public to play at PAX. With the new installment coming out, there are a few changes that are in place that people can expect to enhance the gameplay, but for what was shown off so far is guaranteed more Smash Bros. to go around. Continue Reading