A new year has arrived, which means a new installment in the Sonic the Hedgehog game series is bound to come.
This time, Sega has opted to hand over its famous blue hedgehog to two separate developers for two different games. This new installment of the series will also come with a brand new TV show and a toy line. Sonic fans you and old will get introduced to their favorite characters and several new faces.
Here’s everything you need to know about the expansive universe that is Sonic Boom.
1. This is a Separate, Spin-Off Franchise That’s Different From the Traditional Sonic the Hedgehog Franchise
Aside from Sega’s main Sonic the Hedgehog video game series, the other branch of this familiar universe is the brand new Sonic Boom franchise. Sonic, Tails, Knuckles, Amy and Dr. Eggman will be a major part of this new video game/television show series.
The new cast of characters who will be added to the aforementioned group are Sticks, Orbot and Cubot. The biggest villain of both games will be played by a nefarious ancient enemy named Lyric. Along with new videos games and a television show, Sonic Boom will introduce character redesigns for Sonic, Tails, Knuckles and Amy.
2. Both Games are Being Developed by Two Separate Developers
Two games will be launched in conjunction with the Sonic Boom TV show sometime in November 2014. The Wii U video game (Sonic Boom: Rise of Lyric) will be developed by Los Angeles game studio Big Red Button. As for the 3DS game (Sonic Boom: Shattered Crystal), its development will be handled by Sanzaru Games.
Both games form the final offering of titles that came from Sega’s exclusivity agreement deal with Nintendo. The 1st two games that were created for this deal include Sonic Lost World and Mario & Sonic at the Soichi 2014 Olympic Winter Games.
3. The Wii U Game Will Focus on Expansive Level Exploration and Combat
Sonic Boom: Rise of Lyric will have a stronger focus on speedy platforming stages that are reminiscent of the old Sonic Adventure games. It will also feature some wide play areas that will lend itself to through exploration and a much heavier focus on hard-hitting combat.
Each of the playable characters within the game has their own unique abilities that lend themselves to color-coded sections of the game’s world. Sonic has access to his speed and homing attacks, Tails can fly and utilize various gadgets, Knuckles has powerful attacks and the ability to dig underground and climb walls and Amy can use her hammer to swing on poles.
Every character will also get to use a new whip-like weapon called the EnerBeam. The EnerBeam can be used to grab enemy shields, throw them into other baddies, latch onto rails, solve puzzles etc. The newest robotic ally to get added to this series is Quincy, a character that rebels against Lyric and provides tips to the heroes.
4. It Will Also feature Local Co-Op for Two or Four Players
Since the game features four separate characters, there will two cases of multiplayer options. It’s plot revolves around Lyric and his mission to take over the world with his robot army. Local, co-op multiplayer will be available for up to two players, while the team challenges will allow up to four players to play competitively and locally. During the 2-player co-op sections, players can head to different paths to help solve puzzles with their respective abilities.
There will be orange color-coded paths that are much tougher to navigate, which will be a challenge for older players. One mechanic that makes the co-op experience much easier to handle is this new mechanic – when one players gets downed in battle, the other player will automatically be transported to that player and help revive them. During your trek through the game’s levels, you’ll be able to collect robot parts and help locate secret items by finding Sticks’ foot trails.
5. The 3DS Version Will Focus on Old School, Side Scrolling Gameplay
The 3DS handheld game will focus more on the 2D side-scrolling elements of the old-school games in the series. This game’s story places Amy in the clutches of Lyric due to a kidnapping scheme. Along with the four familiar heroes of the Wii U title, players will get the chance to exclusively play with new character Sticks. You’ll be able to swap in any of the four characters just by selecting them in the middle of gameplay and use their abilities in several different scenarios.
6. The 3DS Edition Will Feature Some Level Types That Are Nods to Past Sonic Games
The 3DS game will feature two special types of stages that feature elements of past Sonic the Hedgehog games. The Rival Races will command a player to race against a 2nd character, which is a gameplay scenario that should be familiar to fans of the Sonic Rivals series. The Tube Races will feature the same type of bonus stages gameplay that was introduced in Sonic the Hedgehog 2.
7. A New Character Named Sticks Will Be Making Her Debut
The newest ally of Sonic and his friends will be a jungle badger named Sticks, who will be voiced by Nika Futterman. Sticks has access to a boomerang weapon and she has a knack for making good use of treasure trinkets.
8. Each of the Character’s Redesigns Were Done to Accentuate Their Abilities
As you’ve probably notice already, Sonic and his band of buddies now look a lot different. Sonic’s bandaged limbs, Tails’s goggles, Knuckles larger physical stature and Amy’s redesigned hammer were done in order to make their respective abilities more prevalent.
9. A New Animated Series Will Land on the Cartoon Network
The Sonic Boom television show will make its debut in the fall of 2014 on Cartoon Network. In France, this 3D animated show will start airing on the same time on Canal J & Gulli. Jack Fletcher will handle the show’s voice directing duties, which is a role he’s held for the video game series since 2010.
The other voice actors for the show includes:
• Sonic (Roger Craig Smith)
• Tails (Colleen Villard)
• Amy (Cindy Robinson)
• Knuckles (Travis Willingham)
• Sticks (Nick Futterman)
• Doctor Eggman (Mike Pollock)
• Orbot (Kirk Thornton)
• Cubot (Wally Wingert)
10. Several New Toys Will Launch Along With This New Universe
Tomy will produce the collection of toys, plush dolls and action figures for the Sonic Boom universe. Some of the toys that have been shown thus far include the Sonic Boom Launcher, Sonic Boom Plane Launcher and the Sonic Boom Burn Bot Playset.