When you want to be kept up to date on the latest Sonic news, it’s pretty likely that you’ll look for it on some Sonic fansite. Not this one obviously, we do a pretty poor job at reporting all the news about the franchise on time. But general video game/entertainment websites, where the normal people get their news, tend to not care all that much about the franchise.
Not that I can blame them. Like the writers often like to say at the start of their Sonic articles, the modern games don’t exactly have the best reputation. Especially now with Sonic Boom: Rise of Lyric and Sonic Runners being the most recent games in people’s memory. Those games are so bad that our wiki editors haven’t bothered to add much info about them on our site. But that’s not really an excuse for misreporting news, like a bunch of site writers did today.
So the news in question here is pretty simple: Hajime Satomi said in an interview with The Worldfolio that the Sonic movie that was announced a couple of years ago is scheduled for release in 2018. No other details, pretty simple, it’s something we’d mention in a Retro Digest article at most. It should be pretty hard to mess this up, right? Well… Continue Reading
With the Sonic series getting older, it’s also becoming harder to find copies of prototypes of both released and unreleased games in the series. Aside from old video game companies not having put enough effort into archiving their work, game cartridges and arcade boards don’t last forever and will probably start to decay in a decade or two. Meaning that the sooner they’re found and archived the better.
So it’s a good thing that arcade board collector ShouTime found a copy of a long lost unreleased Sonic arcade game that none of us even knew about. The game in question here is SegaSonic Bros., a puzzle game similar to Cleopatra Fortune which would have been the last game for which Fukio Mitsuji would have been credited as designer. Mitsuji was most famous for designing the classic Puzzle Bobble. (also known as Bust-A-Move in North America.)
I’m sure a lot of you will probably want to try the game out. Thankfully ShouTime isn’t one of those collectors who wants to keep their collection precious and special by not sharing any of it with the world. He’s helped dump both released and unreleased arcade games in the past. This includes SegaSonic Popcorn Shop, which he helped dump in the October of last year. So he’ll probably share SegaSonic Bros. online as well at some point, meaning that you’ll be able to play the game using MAME.
In part of a presentation highlighting the company’s strongest performers, Sonic Runners is ranked as a failure. The game generates a little between ¥30 million [$256,563 USD] to ¥50 million [$427,588 USD] a month.
It should come as little surprise to anyone following industry news that the mobile market is a veritable shark tank, fighting with many others for a limited pool of money and attention spans. SEGA is part of those never ending digital meat grinding, and is touting their successes in the market. Sonic Runners isn’t so fortunate.
These numbers appear under the Domestic Market section, likely indicating they are Japan specific, but the fact Runners fails to even show up in the Overseas section doesn’t bode well. In fact, the game is no longer available for download on the U.S. Google Play Store and hasn’t been since Nov. 2015.
This shouldn’t come as a shock given the negative reception that surrounded Runners. Since officially going global Summer 2015, the game was constantly criticized for performance issues, glitches, and microtransaction practices that for all intents and purposes amount to under-aged gambling for new characters. If anything, it was a fine endless runner at its core drowned by countless terrible design decisions.
Most of these came to a head with the recent 2.0 update that added death walls to runs, offered more performance issues and overheating devices, and did little to improve the character unlock structure to make it less like a gamble.
One thing to note though is Sonic Dash 2 (referred to as Sonic Dash Boom and Sonic Dash 2: Sonic Boom) is expected to meet continued successes overseas with pushes to continue expanding its market presence.
Goodness, has it really been a year since the last time we visited the world of Sonic the Comic? Well, as time marches on, so does the progress in our quest, as we cover the penultimate game adaptation in the Fleetway series – Sonic 3D: Flickies’ Island (Or Sonic 3D: Blast, as the Yanks might know it, but as that name was only used in North America we won’t be seeing it again in this Euro-focused story!) It’s a short one this time, only covering 3 issues. Written at a time when games were beginning to become thin on the ground in the late 90s, the writers went in a slightly different direction with the story, as we’ll see. The island itself was featured in the comic for a few months afterwards as a base of operations for Dr Robotnik, but just as a location now available for the writers to use. But we’re getting ahead of ourselves. Let’s start back at the beginning, shall we? Hit the jump to continue – there is of course spoilers a-plenty ahead. Continue Reading
In the Sonic Internet community, there have been few stories that have captured the imagination like the tale of Sonic the Hedgehog 3‘s music. With a feel unique from the previous two entries in the series, the discussion of just who composed what have filled untold pages of conversation for well over a decade.
The reason behind that infatuation? Michael Jackson, one of the biggest pop stars of all time. A man who not only defined a decade with the release of Thriller, but also unknowingly inspired the belt buckle of Sonic’s shoes. The idea that a musical icon that large was connected to the gaming sensation of the 90’s in any way was incredibly tantalizing. It wouldn’t be long before audio files, YouTube videos, and snippets of interviews would fill in the gaps. From Qjimbo to GameTrailers, everyone sought to find the answer to what seemed the impossible – confirmation that the King of Pop had been involved in the soundtrack of Sonic 3 at some point, as SEGA’s official line to this day has been to deny or leave no comment.
While it has been almost certainly determined that Michael Jackson was not only involved but that some of his contributions made it to the cartridge, the Huffington Post’s Test Kitchen released today a brand new look at the entire Sonic 3 Jackson story. From what happened behind the scenes to the fandom’s unending interest in the truth, “The Michael Jackson Video Game Conspiracy” by Todd Van Luling covers it all.
With new interviews from Roger Hector, Doug Grigsby III, Brad Buxer, Cirocco Jones and Matt Forger, to comments from Ben Mallison and Steven Nipper that illuminate the community’s part in the story, the article is definitely worth a read for those with even a passing interest in the subject matter.
The only question I’m left with is…who has ever called a Sonic fan a “Blue?”
As we near 25 years of Sonic the Hedgehog, I wanted to kick off a video series looking back at an aspect of the franchise that has always been a favorite of mine – food promotions! From McDonald’s to Topps to Carl’s Jr and beyond, SEGA has teamed their flagship franchise with some of the greatest, and at times weirdest, food companies. In this first installment, I take a look back at the Sonic the Hedgehog 3 McDonald’s Happy Meal promotion which ran worldwide in 1994 and 1995. Everything from the commercials to the in-store displays is covered, and I even clear up some misconceptions about that whole Tails recall situation and figure out just what that yellow Tails ball was. Special thanks to The Gagaman for additional information.
Right, after Gene stole the glory of doing the last ever Monday Links, it’s time for me to start this Retro Digest thing.
So basically Retro Digest will be replacing Monday Links, the supposed-to-be-weekly summary of what’s been happening around the Sonic scene. Except it was almost never actually weekly and it often wasn’t done on Mondays either. So to stop people from making any more snarky responses pointing this out we’re renaming it to Retro Digest. This is our first step in removing all snarkiness on the internet, wish us luck!
Anyway, 2016 is already off to a pretty decent start when it comes to Sonic stuff, with the community doing cool stuff and Sega teasing the fanbase. So here’s a look at the neat stuff that’s been happening Continue Reading