E3: Sonic Generations Q&A With Takashi Iizuka

(NOTE: Because this is a Q&A with questions taken from staff from both Sonic Stadium and Segabits, this article will be posted on both sites simultaneously.)

On the Tuesday afternoon of E3, Alex (nuckles87) and I got the privilege of seeing the first new footage of City Escape from Sonic Generations played by Takashi Iizuka himself. Seeing little classic Sonic going through the famous SA2 level was a thrill. We saw as the large GUN truck made every attempt possible to run down the roly-poly hedgehog as two new remixes of “Escape from the City” played through both levels. As he played through he told some interesting tidbits, including the fact that outside of Green Hill zone, all stages on the 3DS will be different from the HD versions and will have levels based on the portable versions of Sonic’s games. Also, voice overs will be done for all nationalities. Not just Japanese and English. He quit the last level as the GUN truck with it’s giant sawblades ran over modern Sonic as he ran out of boost. Here, our Q&A commenced.

There have been some who were wondering why the Wii was not given a port when the 3DS, which has comparable graphics, has one. Why not port the 3DS version to the Wii?

The 3DS version is a celebration of Sonic’s portable history. As such it only makes sense that we keep that history on a portable system.

There have been rumors of hub worlds between levels similar to Unleashed. Is this something you can confirm?

Ha, ha. Well, as we’ve said. Classic and Modern Sonic meet through time anomalies as a mysterious force is erasing time. Areas are a wash of pure white. As classic and modern beat these classic levels, more color comes into the world. You could say the white space starts as a hub that opens up more as the color comes back in.

Will there be any online features or DLC?
We cannot discuss anything for DLC at this time, but we are planning for online leaderboards.

Will there be more than two acts per zone?

Yes. I cannot give more detail than that at this time, but there will be several acts in each world.

Can you discuss what systems will be represented on the 3DS version such as Game Gear?

Game Gear? (Laughter) No. For the 3DS we wanted to go with systems of more recent memory. So we are more focused on levels from the GBA and DS.

We have seen boss fights with classic Eggman. Will modern Eggman be joining him?

We cannot discuss that due to story elements not yet revealed. I can say there will be remixes of classic boss fights through Sonic’s history.

Since Sonic Colors got its soundtrack published onto iTunes, will there be a Sonic Generations soundtrack as well?

(Laughter) Well, we know that Nintendo just announced a 25th Anniversary soundtrack for the Legend of Zelda. We are currently releasing 20th Anniversary soundtracks for many of our older Sonic games. As far as Sonic Generations goes, I cannot confirm anything at this time, but I’m glad you’re interested.

How early on did you go on the idea for a split between classic and modern Sonic gameplay?

Shortly after Unleashed, we were discussing what kind of game to make to celebrate Sonic’s 20th Anniversary. It was around that time that we decided that classic/modern split would be the best.

How many zones are being planned for the game?

That is something we cannot discuss at this time. (The next day, The E3 Insider  magazine said 9 worlds were planned with a release date of October. It was later debunked by Aaron Webber.)

With that, our time was up and we gave our thank yous and goodbyes. As we left, I told Mr. Iizuka how much I loved last year’s Sonic Colors. He seemed genuinely happy and pleased by that. I was surprised at how many of our questions we were able to get in as the other press were fairly quiet. I will say that neither me nor Alex are pleased by the omission of Game Gear levels for the 3DS.


13 responses to “E3: Sonic Generations Q&A With Takashi Iizuka

  1. cube_b3 says:


    Should've asked him what is the relevance of 2.5D segments when you have dedicated Classic stages?

    How does the release of Sonic Generations affect Sonic 4?

  2. Gagaman says:

    Wow at Iizuka laughing off the prospect of Game Gear stages in the 3DS one. Wanted to focus on systems of more recent memory? But wasn't going back to the old games the whole point of generations?

  3. STORM! says:

     Iizuka SUX!

    End period. -_-;

  4. Thanks for asking these questions! Looks like a few of mine got asked, way past cool.

    Nice to know that they were thinking about the concept as early as 2008. Totally debunks the rumor that SEGA was copying Sonic Fan Remix. Also, great to hear that we'll have more than 2 acts per world. From the sound of it, we'll have more than enough acts.

    Great job, guys!

  5. Laelaps says:

    In what way is the 3DS a celebration of portable history if it's got Casino Nights zone? Also, in that soundtrack question, it ought to be "you're."

  6. Radrappy says:

    great questions, great interview.

  7. -nSega54- says:

    Nice interview. The Game Gear thing makes sense, it's pretty obvious Sonic Generations 3DS is trying to appeal to people with fond memories of the GBA/DS Sonic Rush games, which is, like it or not, an audience much younger than those who would remember the Game Gear.

  8. Sharky says:

    Great interview.

    There is plenty of new infomation here and things that were rumour are now confirmed. I can answer those two questions for you;

    1) Because they are representing modern Sonic and modern Sonic as of Unleashed HAS got 3D and 2D segments.

    2) It doesn't.

  9. batfax says:

    "Game Gear? (Laughter) No."


  10. Sega Uranus says:

    Just when I was starting to think this would be good, there I go thinking again!

    A celebration of Sonic's portable history? Cool! With the strange look of Green Hill Zone, I assumed that meant it was based on the Master System/Game Gear release, but nope! Only Game Boy Advance and DS levels? What a stupid and complete waste of time, those games have some of the least interesting levels in the entire series, when stuff like Chaos and Triple Trouble is BEGGING to be remade with better physics.

    More than two acts per zone? So again, the biggest problems with Sonic Unleashed and Sonic Colors returns. We have 2 good levels for each zone, then like 4 to 6 other awful ones based around stupid gimmicks and either way too short and pointless or long and boring.

    This will be one of the worst handheld Sonic games ever.

  11. Aki-at says:

    I am not sure why they want to go with more recent memory for the 3DS version, was not the whole point of this crossover to be so classic stages return? Sure they can have the console versions, but I think its fairly silly to claim you are celebrating Sonic's history and then decide to only go with titles from the GBA and DS.

  12. Tsukento says:

    Maybe it's me…but I felt the interview rather sucked. By that, I mean it felt like Iizuka basically dodged every damn question he was given. A majority of the legitimate questions he was asked, all he seemed to answer with is "lol Can't tell you." In fact, I think the only things he really told us were that there'll be leaderboards, 3DS Generations won't have Game Gear stages and that they came up with the concept after Unleashed. :

  13. Stormer says:

    Takashi Iizuka…what is he on about?
    ‘We’re making Sonic Generations to commemorate the past game’s of Sonic…we’re gonna pretend the Game Gear games didn’t exist though haha’.
    Umm…then that’s not really commemorative.
    ‘Haha soundtrack’. Umm that’s not really funny?

    This guy sounds like a flipping Jap stuck up on the fact he’s working on a time-travelling Sonic game. They could’ve made a trilogy of this series, Sonic Generations, 2 & 3. Each focusing on different levels throughout the history. They’ve only got one act from each game up to Unleashed ignoring Shadow the hedgehog.

    I wanted to see some Aqua Planet, Marble Zone, Aqua Ruins, Scrap Brain Zone (GG)…Metropolis, Apotos etc. None of those levels are in. I’m sure I speak for many with what I’ve said here.

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