That little blue hedgehog with an attitude hasn’t exactly aged well, has he? Sonic’s glory days, like a snaking speed-trail, are well and truly behind him. His rival, Mario, has fared much better when transitioning to 3D, but Sonic lost something in the move.
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In an interview with Twinfinite, product manager Jim Dyer said Sega were aware of this struggle to evolve. “Sonic is a franchise that we’ve tried to evolve but it hasn’t necessarily worked - I can openly say that,” Dyer stated.
This comment was in response to a question about the release timing of Sonic Mania and Sonic Forces. Sonic Mania is a remaster of old-school Sonic, essentially, while Sonic Forces is Sega’s next attempt at making their mascot work in 3D.
“Sonic Mania is for the fans,” explained Dyer. “The plan with Sonic Forces, bringing Forces out soon after, is that it is a Sonic game for everyone. Sonic Mania is one for fans, either because of nostalgia or for people who just love the brand, or for kids that recognise the character.
“Sonic Forces is its own initiative. It is a broader game, a different sort of Sonic than what we’ve done before. It is about reinvigorating Sonic. I won’t say Forces is about making Sonic relevant again because I don’t think that is quite the right term, but we understand we have a flagship IP, this brand powerhouse that Sega wants to get back to what it should be.”
Basically, Sega want to cover all bases, appeasing as much of their audience as possible. Let’s hope Sonic Forces finally does the spiky fella justice.
Sonic Mania releases in summer, while Sonic Forces is due later this year.