E3 is upon us, and with it comes new Sonic Mania details! In this SEGA News Bits, Barry and George discuss the recently revealed Chemical Plant Zone and the reveal of the Green Hill Zone boss. Also discussed is the game’s length, SEGA’s marketing efforts and more!
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Releasing early 2018 to PlayStation 4 and playable at SEGA’s E3 booth, the much anticipated Yakuza 6: The Song of Life has an official E3 trailer!
Kazuma Kiryu, the Dragon of Dojima (and the main protagonist of SEGA’s long-running Yakuza franchise) will find out exactly how much people are willing to sacrifice for family – be those ties through blood or bond – when Yakuza 6: The Song of Life releases in the West. The game is coming to consoles only on PlayStation 4, and thanks to the new “Dragon Engine,” is the most advanced Yakuza title to date. From the unparalleled realism of the new setting of Onomichi, a beautiful, sleepy port town in Hiroshima Prefecture, to the latest evolution of Kamurocho, the biggest red light district in Tokyo, Yakuza 6 is the ultimate iteration the game’s blend of gritty crime story, hyper-explosive combat, and all the vices and distractions those locales have to offer. Yakuza 6: The Song of Life will be localized by SEGA and published in the Americas and Europe in physical and digital formats in early 2018.
SEGAbits is attending E3 2017, so be on the lookout for our impressions on the game soon!
SEGA has recently released a brand new trailer for Sonic Mania for pre-order as the footage showcasing unique sketch animation by Tyson Hesse, who has worked on Sonic Mega Drive comic, which strikingly resembles Sonic CD‘s opening and the leak that was revealed a few months ago. The video also revealed a new level and boss fights.
Stardust Speedway Past from Sonic CD is making a comeback with new level features with plant like robots and vines, a miniboss in Flying Battery Zone, and a boss fight with Heavy Gunner in action.
A Puyo Puyo game, released in the west. Such a strange sentence to type out in the context, due to the Puyo Puyo franchise being one of those notorious cases of a series being stuck in Asian shores with maybe the rare localized title or import title that quickly comes and goes. The last time a major Puyo Puyo game was in American and European territories was the 2004 title Puyo Pop Fever, and since then the series has been quiet. Aside from the occasional table scraps like the port of Puyo Puyo Tsu on the Wii Virtual Console, the version of Puyo Puyo Tsu in SEGA 3D Classics Collection, and the Puyo Puyo 39 minigame in Hatsune Miku: Project Mirai DX, the series has otherwise been absent.
But that all changed with Puyo Puyo Tetris, a game that has existed since 2014 on multiple systems. Unlike other Puyo Puyo games prior, Puyo Puyo Tetris gained notable attention in western territories for years. It might be a case of a silver lining in an otherwise rough year for SEGA or the controversial practices the Tetris brand has been associated with, or just it being a very fun game, but regardless Puyo Puyo Tetris was requested for localization for quite a while. But now it is 2017 and we finally have the game in western shores, more specifically for the popular Playstation 4 and Nintendo’s recently released Nintendo Switch.
After such a gap between the game’s original launch in 2014 and the 13 years since the last time a major Puyo Puyo title was released in the west, is Puyo Puyo Tetris the comeback that has been long overdue, or was there a reason why western fans were were denied Puyo Puyo for so long?
Well this is a surprise! It has just been announced that Night Trap, the famous (some would argue infamous) FMV game made popular on the SEGA CD and SEGA CD 32X, is returning to the PlayStation 4 just in time for the 25th anniversary. Remastered by Screaming Villains, the game will release digitally and physically thanks to Limited Run Games. What is really cool, and of interest to SEGA fans, is that the Limited Run Games cover art emulates the classic American SEGA CD and SEGA CD 32X box art complete with the blue and yellow candy cane stripes! The physical release should hit the company’s website soon.
Back in 2014 we had the privilege of interviewing Digital Pictures co-founder Tom Zito, the man behind Night Trap. At the time, Tom and a small team were attempting a remaster titled Night Trap ReVamped, though sadly the Kickstarter failed to reach its goal. We don’t know if Tom and his team have any influence in this rerelease, but we’ll reach out and see what’s up.
Update: We just learned that the owners of the Night Trap license –
presumably Tom Zito and Night Trap, LLC since they had already bought and paid for the rights prior to the ReVamped project – granted developer Screaming Villains the license after they posted to YouTube a video of the game running on a mobile phone. You can watch what we believe to be the video after the break.
Update 2: Tom Zito plays no part in this rerelease, so it is unknown at this time who the license holder is.
Update 3: The game will also release to Xbox One, though no sign of those SEGA styled boxes from Limited Run Games.
Covering SEGA news for coming up on 9 years now, I have to say that after some really dark times when the notion of no physical releases from SEGA was a possibility, it feels really good to post up simple articles like this one. Puyo Puyo Tetris is now available on Nintendo Switch and PlayStation 4 in the Americas, and is set to release on April 28th in Europe. Featuring gameplay from two iconic puzzle games, Puyo Puyo Tetris offers up several single and multi-player as well as online play. Those who buy the Nintendo Switch version at and around launch will receive a special Launch Edition featuring Puyo Puyo and Tetris themed keychains, while the PS4 version comes in a Standard Edition.
Stay tuned to SEGAbits as we have a review incoming, and in the near future we want to plan a SEGAbits Community Game Night. Don’t own the game yet? Order the Puyo Puyo Tetris for Nintendo Switch Launch Edition or the Puyo Puyo Tetris for PlayStation 4 Standard Edition! Who knows, strong sales could mean Puyo Puyo Chronicles getting a 3DS release in the west.
Did somebody say launch edition? SEGA of America are at it again, as Valkyria Revolution the “Vanargand Edition” has just been announced to release June 27 to Xbox One and Playstation 4. The game is also due out digitally to the Playstation Vita that same day. The “Vanargand Edition” will be available in the Americas and will include a pin inscribed with the Vanargand’s ferocious coat of arms, a 12-track soundtrack by Yasunori Mitsuda (Chrono Trigger, Stella Glow) and the usual box containing it all. Those in Europe need not fret, as those who pre-order or buy the game at launch will receive the soundtrack.
After the break, take a peek at the “Vanargand Edition” and read the full press release from SEGA of America.
Yesterday, at a SEGA hosted SXSW panel, Project Sonic 2017 was revealed to be titled Sonic Forces. The panel featured a video showcasing the Modern Sonic gameplay, however no direct feed version was released so we had to rely on fans streaming from the audience. Thankfully, SEGA has now officially released that video to YouTube and, well, see for yourself!
Also released are two screens via a Game Informer article, seen after the break. The article itself reveals a few cool new things, thanks to an extended cut of the gameplay which was shown privately. Game Informer mentions that as you play, side-characters like Knuckles, Amy and the Chaotix communicate via radio to report on what they’re seeing during Eggman’s assault. It is also mentioned that these characters are not playable, as the game will only feature Modern Sonic, Classic Sonic and a third style that has yet to be revealed.
Update: A high res version of the video is floating about, so I ripped some high quality screens which can be seen after the break.
In the latest reveal for the upcoming Sonic Mania, Sonic the Hedgehog brand social media manager, Aaron Webber, gave a special first look at Green Hill Zone Act 2 and how transitions work between acts similar to Sonic 3 & Knuckles. The second act of Green Hill Zone demonstrates a new mechanic such as the zip line, interactivity with the elemental shields to enter secret routes, and reveals a much closer look of the mountains and waterfalls in the background.
Aaron also noted that the background layout of Act 2 is a reference to the early prototype of the original Sonic the Hedgehog. While the boss for Act 2 cannot be revealed at the time, Aaron has mentioned that are brand new badniks introduced in Sonic Mania known as the Hard Boiled Heavies and Heavy Gunner which have been revealed on the Sonic Twitter account and are detailed in a new article from Game Informer. What are your thoughts on Green Hill Zone Act 2? Feel free to leave a comment below.
For the video without the commentary and artwork of the new badniks, be sure to hit the jump below.
Sony has announced that they are celebrating ‘SEGA & Sonic Month’ over on PlayStation Now by adding 13 SEGA titles to its streaming line-up. If you don’t know what PlayStation Now is, its basically a pay-per-month service that allows you to stream titles on a number of devices including PC, PlayStation TV, PlayStation 4 and other smart appliances. Since the service uses ‘the cloud’, you’ll be able to play on one device and pick up where you left off on another. PlayStation Now is a great concept but I only recommend it if you have really fast and stable internet.
These are the 13 SEGA titles that are now available to stream on PlayStation Now this month:
- Alex Kidd in the Miracle World
- Altered Beast
- Comix Zone
- Fighting Vipers
- Golden Axe
- Revenge of Shinobi
- Sega Bass Fishing
- Sonic Adventure
- Sonic Adventure 2
- Sonic the Fighters
- Sonic Unleashed
- Super Hang-on
- Virtua Fighter 2
If you think your ISP is fast and stable enough to stream playable games, you can give the service a try with Sony’s seven-day free trial. A bit weird that they added SEGA Genesis titles to the service, I would have assumed they would have tried getting more full fledged games like Vanquish, Binary Domain and other bigger titles. What are your thoughts on PlayStation Now?
We here at SEGAbits are beyond excited that SEGA is taking a chance on Puyo Puyo Tetris, releasing April 25 to the Playstation 4 and Nintendo Switch in the Americas and on April 28 in Europe. While some of us on the team are seasoned Puyo ploppers (check out our retrospective on Puyo Puyo and Tetris), it is understandable that a majority of gamers don’t know what Puyo Puyo is. Thankfully, SEGA has just released a trailer for the upcoming game dubbed “Back to Basics”. The short trailer gives a basic introduction to how the game is played, and shows off the various game modes.
Check out the trailer above and don’t forget to lock in that pre-order. The more support the game gets, the more likely we are to see other Puyo Puyo games in the west!
January 2017 saw the reveal of the Nintendo Switch, and following the live event several announcements were made. One that was of interest to SEGA fans was the reveal that Puyo Puyo Tetris would be coming west to the Switch and the Playstation 4. On this SEGA News Bits, George and Barry are joined by SEGAbits.com writer and resident Puyo Puyo expert FlareHabanero to explain what we can expect from the upcoming game.
Those who have purchased Yakuza 0 may find a prize waiting for them upon boot up. Like previous games in the series, Yakuza 0 gives players items if it can find Yakuza series system data on the Playstation 4. As I’ve imported Ryu Ga Gotoku Ishin, it seems that did the trick in giving me gear to be used by Kiryu or Majima. As it is still early in the game I’ve yet to see what Majima’s Mad Dog Gloves do, but Kiryu’s Dragon God Amulet is described as “filling up your energy reserves when you’re close to death”, which should be handy for players!
2017 is a big year for SEGA games, as evidenced by the fact that Yakuza and Puyo Puyo are making their return to the west as full-fledged franchises, Valkyria Chronicles is set to return by way of a spin-off, and the company mascot Sonic the Hedgehog will debut two hotly anticipated games.
But I’m getting ahead of myself. Today the prequel to the long running Yakuza franchise, Yakuza 0, releases to the Playstation 4 in the Americas and Europe. If you have not ordered the game, do so today via this handy link. Those who order now in America will receive The Business Edition, which includes a dragon branded business card holder and reproductions of business cards carried by the game’s protagonists Kazuma Kiryu and Goro Majima.
Now is the time to jump into the series, as Yakuza 0 takes place before the first game which has a remake due out later this year to the Playstation 4 followed by a localization of Yakuza 6 in 2018. If you have already ordered the game, share your thoughts in our dedicated forum topic or on the SEGAbits Discord chat. Still on the fence? Read or watch our review of the game!