NEWS - Tuesday, September 6, 2005

Sonic To Make Double Dash For Xbox 360?

It seems barely a week passes without some sort of Sonic release these days - but fans have still been anticipating the next, big Sonic game. Ever since Sega teased with next-gen demo footage back at E3 in May, we've been waiting to see more of Sonic looking so darn good. After all, the other demos that formed part of Sega's closed-booth presentation have all now been announced and shown off at last week's AM show in Japan. Kikizo can reveal that Next-Gen Sonic is scheduled to be announced at the end of this week, on September 9, before making an appearance at the Tokyo Game Show, which starts September 16. Next-Gen Sonic is set to reflect the E3 demo, which has since been leaked onto the web in a low-quality video. It showed Sonic speeding through the jungle before facing up to an army of mechanical enemies, which gunned the hero down in a spray of bullets. Poor Sonic! But he became Super Sonic and kicked their ass. Go Sonic! We'll likely see more of what the game will offer on the 9th, when we expect the first screen shots and details to hit the web. But, when Sonic is shown off at TGS we expect a full, debut trailer at the very least. However, don't expect to be playing it anytime soon. Next-Gen Sonic won't see release for well over a year. We've not been able to confirm the formats it will appear on, but we're speculating that the initial announcement will focus on Xbox 360, while eventual release will see multiple next-gen platforms. Back at E3, Sega representatives were coy when pushed for details of which hardware the demos represented - particularly in the case of Sonic. And it's no secret that recent Sonic titles were developed using popular middleware, so it's likely that the demo wasn't format-specific either, and can be scaled to any console. It makes sense for Sonic to remain a multi-platform franchise - but we'll have to wait and see. Sonic Heroes left a sour taste for some fans, while others loved it. The previous Sonic Adventure titles were generally well received, but still had some widely recognized problems. Sega is listening to critical feedback today more than ever, and also making far more strategic decisions than it has done in the past. Maybe this time, Next-Gen Sonic will get it just right. Some might say Sonic's getting on a bit now - but thankfully, Sega disagrees. Sonic will be announced ahead of TGS. One thing that's certain is is that Dr Eggman will sound a bit different this time. Deem Bristow, the voice actor who played the villain in the previous games, sadly passed away in January this year. So, Yu Suzuki finally returns with a promising new arcade title, legendary AM2 franchises are back, Shenmue is still alive, Nagoshi is exploring an untapped side of his creativity, and now Sonic is set to return in a big way. It seems about the right time to point out "we told you so" when we said that the game was far from over for Sega fans. And by the way, you can also look forward to new versions of other popular Sega franchises at TGS as well. Be excited!


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