SEGA’s Sonic Unleashed was a very important game in the Sonic the Hedgehog franchise, it was the birth of a brand new ‘boost Sonic’ formula that would extend to Sonic Colors, Generations and even the latest Forces video game. At the same time it was also the start of focusing on Sonic and abandoning the friends that became mainstay since the release of Sonic Adventure.
To celebrate, I asked on Twitter what our audience thought about Sonic Unleashed, all these 11 years later. First we had a 3 hour long poll that got 459 votes and hot takes from fans:
The Wii Shop Channel is beginning it’s operations to shut down the service on the 30th of January in 2019. Nintendo put out a reminder that the service will prevent you from being able to add points to purchase games from their service March 26th.
Not only will you be unable to redownload games you purchased from the service after the shutdown date, this will take away several games that include titles that are very difficult to find in the after market. Leading up to the closure of the service we will be posting articles featuring games that SEGA fans will want to keep their eyes on. SEGA has been a major supporter for the service since the beginning of Nintendo’s foray into the digital market. Starting off with titles from the Mega Drive and the Genesis, the service grew to provide cult favorites, rare and valuable titles and even imports from Japan. There are also a few WiiWare titles to consider, exclusive games that were hampered by small file size limits for developers and lack of advertising. We won’t exactly be recommending recommend Sonic 4 Episode 1, but it is worth mentioning since it will no longer be on sale.
Sonic Unleashed is seen as one of the biggest 3D entries in the history of Sonic. Whether you like the werehog or not, it brought a massive overhaul to the game design philosophy of Sonic working in the third dimension. The beautiful environments based on real-life locations, fast gameplay and a unique lighting engine all housed under the “Hedgehog Engine” helped achieve a major milestone for fast-paced 3D platformers. Fast forward towards the end of the downer year that is 2016, it has brought us one thing that can shed some meaningful insight on the development of Sonic Unleashed; the release of an Xbox 360 preview build.
If you discuss Streets of Rage, Super Monkey Ball, or even anything Sonic, chances are you can hear that 90’s jingle of retro goodness (SEGAAAAAAAAAAA!). The company helped create some wonderful games and franchises and are still going strong to this day. That being said, most of the games published by SEGA are sometimes often forgot about and usually sit on store shelves to collect dust and/or be pauper’s pennies.
While I haven’t played every single game SEGA has helped publish, some of those games stick out to me in a very unique and interesting way. And SEGA, being the quirky company they are, brought me wonderful memories and breathes a one-of-a-kind charm to those certain games. So in no particular order (with the first one being my favorite out of the five), here are some games that rightfully deserve more attention than they get!
Welcome to a new crossover special episode of the SEGA News Bits, today George and Barry talk about Sonic the Hedgehog Creator Yuji Naka’s recent interview where he said he wanted a Mario & Sonic crossover action game. I know what you are thinking, that there are already Mario & Sonic the Hedgehog crossover games in the form of Olympic titles, but that isn’t really what fans and Yuji Naka envisioned for a Mario & Sonic the Hedgehog crossover game. Tune in and let us know what your ideal Mario & Sonic crossover game would be.
NiGHTS Into Dreams hit the SEGA Saturn 20 years ago, leaving a generation of gamers mesmerized by its beautiful 3D graphics and surreal dream world. Today on the SEGA News Bits we will be talking all about Sonic Team’s NiGHTS franchise including a retrospective (of its two whole games) and even cameos the purple jester has made through its 20 years of existence.
So sit back, hit play and let’s chat about NiGHTS into Dreams. If you like these SEGA News Bits videos, hit subscribe on our YouTube channel to see more!
Sonic the Hedgehog’s 25th anniversary officially kicked off on June 23rd, which was of course the release date of the eponymous game that started it all. In this SEGA News Bits, George and Barry look back on 25 years of Sonic by spin dashing through all the main series Sonic Team developed console games. There are quite a few to get through, so consider this more of a SEGA News Smörgåsbord. Why are you still reading this? Click play and enjoy!
What are your favorite Sonic games? Let us know the comments below and like always thanks for watching! If you like our SEGA News Bits videos, make sure to subscribe to us on our YouTube channel.
While not every single gamer is sold on Virtual Reality just yet, mostly due to the fact that it is rather expensive to even get a headset and compatible computer, the people that have experienced it all think its the future of gaming. While this is still open to debate, what I do know is that Virtual Reality has opened the door for older types of genres that SEGA pioneered in their long history to thrive. So today on The SEGA Five we will be discussing five genres that SEGA can revive with the help of Virtual Reality.
Before we get started I just want to say that these ideas are to make the games Virtual Reality compatible and not exclusive. I think this would mean that more gamers will be able to enjoy the games, VR headset or not. The number of gamers with Virtual Reality headsets is too low to spend money on exclusives right now. So let’s get to it.
SEGA’s Sonic the Hedgehog franchise turns 25 today, and while we’ve celebrated franchise milestone years in the past, there is something really special about this one. A quarter of a century is a long time, and it is a testament to SEGA’s perseverance and the devotion of the Sonic fanbase that the franchise is still going strong. Sonic Lost World and the Sonic Boom franchise – particularly the games – are often pinpointed as the franchise’s recent weak points and signs that the franchise as a whole needs to be put down or at the very least take a long break. While I am not here to debate the merits of Sonic Lost World and Sonic Boom, I will say that to end a series or take a long break because of either is both incredibly shortsighted and far too extreme a reaction. I would also argue that Sonic is about much more than just the main series games, as fans like to label the major titles, and that there has always been great Sonic things happening even during the franchise’s darkest years.
In celebration of 25 years of Sonic the Hedgehog, join me in looking back year-by-year as I shine the light on great moments in Sonic history that more people need to be talking about.
Multiplayer Showcase is the review show where you get to see me and some friends of mine play multiplayer games that have been long forgotten and give it a proper analysis by sharing our opinions on the game in a roundtable discussion to see how things have held up for gaming’s past brightest stars and lowest points.
This episode compares the boxing gloves to the green shells with the Mario Kart-inspired Sonic & SEGA All-Stars Racing. I never got to play this game much with friends locally. I’ve certainly played it online some time ago, but as you might recall, there are limitations added when playing online, so playing with a group of people with everything unlocked lets everyone dig in for some four player action coupled with SEGA nostalgia.
While yes, this is not a SEGA product, it IS the long awaited action adventure game from Sonic the Hedgehog co-creator Yuji Naka. Naka and his studio Prope had been working on this game for quite some time, and it has been an equal (if not more) amount of time that the game has been delayed. In fact, the game is so old it had to be ported from the Wii to the Wii U! Naka has been pretty vocal about being disappointed with the Wii U and 3DS versions of the game, urging players to try the original Wii version as that is the version he and Prope truly developed.
Having said that, I bought the Nintendo 3DS version. Mainly because the Limited Edition was about $20 cheaper and included the exact same extras. So ignore which version of the game I bought and check out what bonuses came with the NIS America produced Limited Edition version of Yuji Naka’s long awaited Rodea the Sky Soldier!
The executive team, Hideki Okamura (Left), Hisao Oguchi (Middle) and Takayuki Kawagoe (Right).
In 2005, Sega was back in the black in all areas for the first time in a long time. The Sega Sammy structure was completed, and the next generation home consoles were ahead. Like in the formation of twelve new R&D studios in 1998, executive management had a reset. Long time executives Hideki Sato and Hisashi Suzuki retired from Sega, after their thirty – or even in Suzuki’s case – forty years of service.
As mentioned in Part 3, Hisao Oguchi would atain the highest executive position which he held until 2008 where he received even wider responsibilities as Chief Creative Officer of Sega Sammy.
Then there is Masano Maeda, who joined in 1991. Madea was responsible for building a new Western management team that made crucial partnerships and buyouts of Western companies, like Creative Assembly, Sports Interactive and Secret Level On a side note: the amount of games developed for Xbox 360 amount to roughly forty games, and on PC to about sixty games. On the Dreamcast, the amount comes to fourteen, and old PC releases amount to sixteen.
NIS America just posted an interview with Rodea the Sky Soldier creator Yuji Naka (Sonic the Hedgehog, Chu Chu Rocket and NiGHTS) and director Zin Hasegawa (Fatal Frame series) on their Youtube channel. It’s a pretty interesting interview with Yuji Naka starting off by saying that it has been a long time and it really has, so it’s good to see him do these types of interviews for games again.
Yuji Naka even talks about how he has created games that have to do with speed like Sonic the Hedgehog and flying games like NiGHTS and whether that factored into creating Rodea the Sky Soldier since it has similarities. Listen in and I hope Prope and SEGA work on a project again in the near future.
Recently some Japanese game programming decided to take a look at Rodea Sky Solider, since I don’t really understand Japanese and I assume you don’t either, I skipped the video above to the gameplay (and if I did it wrong it starts at the 8 minute mark). A few thing that I noticed was the long loading at the start and the low resolution textures (mostly because the game started as a Wii game).
It was recently announced that NIS America would bring the game to America and Europe this fall; so you’ll be able to play it in English soon enough. The game will be coming to Wii U and 3DS, the video mostly shows off the Wii U version but at the end they show off very little of the 3DS version too (off screen gameplay).
Like most long suffering Sonic the Hedgehog fans I have a love/hate relationship with the Sonic series. For every step forward Sonic takes, he takes two steps backwards or worse. I’m sure we call all agree, we’d like to see our beloved Sonic series shine again. Unfortunately we don’t all agree on how to achieve this goal. By creating various ‘generations of Sonic’ with a variety of differently play style,s SEGA have built a polarized, multifaceted fan base who all want something different from the series. From classic Sonic fans who like 2D side scrolling to Adventure fans who enjoy a varied play styles and a story driven experience and not forgetting the Rush fans that just want a good bit of fast.
Is any one group of the Sonic fan base more correct than the other? No, of course not- it takes all sorts. Though I do love the classics, I am no stranger to the modern Sonic games and I believe both have plenty to offer. I enjoy both Sonic Colours and Sonic Generations. I routinely return to Sonic Rush and it’s incredible OST. I spent an unhealthy portion of my teenage years in a stuffy dark bedroom playing the Sonic Adventure titles.
So is it possible to cater to the entire multifaceted Sonic fanbase? Probably not! But is it possible to create a Sonic game the majority of us can enjoy without it being a bloated hot mess? Maybe! Here are some of my suggestions.