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Sonic Forces – three gameplay styles, new engine, more

Posted on March 16, 2017 by (@NE_Brian) in News, Switch

It’s been a long wait for actual details on Sonic Forces, formally known as Project Sonic 2017. SEGA finally lifted the curtain at a SXSW panel today by sharing a bit of gameplay and details.

Sonic Team head Takashi Iizuka called Sonic Forces an “evolution of Sonic Colors and Sonic Generations”. New concepts will be included. Three unique gameplay styles are planned, one of which was shown in the footage – modern Sonic.

Also mentioned is that a brand new engine is being used called Hedgehog Engine 2. Nothing is being thrown out, as the team took the old engine, evolved it, and turned it into something new.

SEGA has taken a lot of visual elements from past games and are going further with them. Global illumination, physical rendering, and other new enhancements and mechanics are being included. Forces will also be able to better shown lighting reflecting on items and water. Since Sonic is a quick game, Sonic Team needed to make sure it looks good while quickly going through levels.

Sonic Forces will be very true to Sonic games from the team behind Colors and Generations. Platforming is said to be important as is the high-speed gameplay of Modern Sonic. Different paths / routes will be scattered throughout the levels. Additionally, Wisps are back and it sounds like they increase Sonic’s boost gauge.

And once again, Classic Sonic is confirmed. That’s the second unique gameplay style. The third style will be discussed in the coming months.

As one final note, Tomoya Ohtani is on board to work on Sonic Forces’ music.

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  • AdriΓ‘n Alucard

    I miss when Sonic was a platformer instead of a simple runner

    • ibo
      • Tide
        • nemo37

          LOL…

      • AdriΓ‘n Alucard

        Maybe Green Hill Zone (or the first zone in every Sonic) is the running stage but you can barely run in posterior zones (spring yard zone, marble zone, labyrinth zone…) Yeah those zones have small segments where you can run, but platforming is the important part

        • Hidden Flare

          Pft… I’m sorry if I sound rude really but Every Spnic fan sure loves marble and labyrinth zone XD
          Don’t you just love standing on a stone jus waiting… Yeah I don’t think you put up good examples, sure sonic is a platformer but it’s also has a expense on speed. Heck it’s pretty been that way for most games in the series. Oh and look at the trailer where sonic jumps… It’s almost as if it’ll have platforner elements.

          Seriously not trying to be rude to you but it’s odd to think sonic was just a platformer. If you have better proof then please share.

          • AdriΓ‘n Alucard

            If every zone of Sonic (with Green Hill being the excepcion) are not a good example of platforming over speed, maybe Oil Ocean, Mystic Cave, Hill Top, Metropolis Zone, Casino Nigh, Aquatic Ruins from Sonic 2 are a better example…

            And yeah, in the trailer Sonic jumps once, but it fells very automatic, just go straight foward and the game plays by itself, plain and boring like very “Green eyes” Sonic game

          • Hidden Flare

            Green eyes… really… Orginal.

            But I think I can counter that, though I admit that I’m more 3D sonic then 2d so I’m not the best at this and it has been awhile.

            Starlight zone from sonic 1, pretty much every first level in all 2d sonic games (maybe not the chaotix one but including cd)
            Most of sonic’s adventure stages (1 and 2) unleashed when it’s not 2d and even then it has some speed needed. Generations on 3D and 2D. Sorry if I did things differently. My memory was a bit off. Maybe I can get it better organized later. And technically unleash and generations may not count but I thought I add them anyway.

          • AdriΓ‘n Alucard

            You are not countering anything.
            You can not run in Starlight Zone it’s filled with spikes and pits, also movin walls and see-saws that makes you stop and wait
            I already said that first zone in every Sonic is about running in the first reply, but it’s just that the first zone against the full games and in the last reply I said that modern Sonic games are about speed and thats what I’m complaining about.

            If you don’t like Green eyes Sonic, we can call it Chav Sonic

          • Hidden Flare

            Its hard to explain from you have to count all fast stages, stages that let you move fast, vs stages that slow down, like the platforms you mentioned. After Sonic 1 this was fixed for more fast stages or at least parts where you can move fast as opposed to more slowing down. Its probably still there but the game wants you to move fast and enjoy yourself. I don’t know about you but I still consider starlight zone a fast stage because its like green hill where you can run and avoid these obsitcues if you are focused enough.

            I’ve played sonic 2 fully and while my memory is foggy you can still run fast in most stages there, like chemical plant zone, yes there are those platforms with the raising water but there are long slopes you run fast on, so its still plenty a fast stage with platforming.

            Chav Sonic, I never heard that one before.

  • Simtopia23

    Temple Run: Sonic edition.

    Kinda disappointed, Project Sonic was basically their last chance to save the franchise and it looks a more stylish version of a mobile game. :/

    • nemo37

      Not really. The gameplay shown is similar to Sonic Generations/Colors both of which have actual platforming and allow the player to fully control Sonic (the only thing it has in common with Temple Run is that they both have a running elements, but then again the controls and the gameplay are nothing like each other).

    • Velen (Not WoW)

      -if you think this looks like a mobile game, you haven’t played Colors or Generations.

    • TheGoomba

      “Last chance to save the franchise.” You have no clue whatsoever what you’re talking about.

    • MagcargoMan

      If ’06 couldn’t kill Sonic, nothing can.

  • Stuart

    I hope that third gameplay style is something around playing with other characters aside from the two Sonics, its been a really long time since Sega allowed main 3D Sonic games to play with characters other than Sonic.

    • Patbacknitro

      Oh yes I loved playing as other characters besides Tails, knuckles, and Sonic. God who could not get enough of Big the Cats epic fishing adventures.

      • Hidden Flare

        Or gamma or shadow in adventure or every single sonic hero in heroes or Amy and cream in sonic advance or-

        Also Big shouldn’t be played like a fisher here, I mean won’t that distract everyone from his own game Big’s big fishing adventure 3? ;p

        • Patbacknitro

          But have you guys thought about this. 3 gameplay modes. 1 being linear 3d, 1 being the classic Sonic 2D, so what could the third mode be………………………….Fishing for Froggy. Hell yes

          • Hidden Flare

            Oh thats good logic, finding foggy is a very important thing to do, maybe all characters can fish so we can fix our mutilple characters issue, more characters are payable in a very similar style. Sega will give fans what they want. XD

      • Stuart

        lol ok ok,you made a point πŸ˜›

    • i hope the third play style is turn-based strategy rpg

    • MagcargoMan

      They’d have to play pretty radically differentiate if it’s to be considered a new gameplay style. Classic Tails could easily work in just the Classic Sonic style. Modern Tails would probably need his own style because it’d be pretty weird to see him running around in levels designed for the speed of Modern Sonic.

      My theory is that it’s a third Sonic. It ties into the name of Sonic Forces (like, a team of Sonics) and they already had the idea of Dreamcast Sonic being his own character in Generations.

      • Hidden Flare

        I see what you mean, while I see its possible for both tails to be played in both styles, I don’t know if any other character could be played in a similar style.

        As for the third sonic, dramcast sonic is good idea as I see they can mess with that sonic enough to make him work there and it would make all sides of the fandom happy.

        Boom Sonic is less likely, while I can see him being there because of how well received the tv show was received and kinda the comics, the games were not liked very well, especially the console one. So I don’t see the possibity.

        There is also the possibility of another new Sonic, it could be another new character with similar abilities like shadow and silver or just a different Sonic like one from the future or another dimension… I suppose Im getting a bit fanficy here but hey Sega was the one who made classic and modern meet, which is very fanficy in general.

  • Puffdaddy
    • ibo

      why…………

    • nemo37

      Oh I hope they do not have Boom Sonic, but I have the sneaking suspicion that is what they will do. Oh well at least 2/3 of the game will still be good.

      • ibo
        • nemo37

          Personally speaking I actually like modern Sonic (I know that some people do not like the boost formula though). It is Boom Sonic I am worried about, since at best (assuming Sonic Team does not make his sections as broken as they were in BigRedButton’s Sonic Boom Rise of Lyric) he will be a variation of the Werehog (slow and generic platformer/beat-em up). The only people that might be able to salvage Boom Sonic’s gameplay are Platinum Games, because they specialize in fast-paced combat gameplay, but obviously they are not working on this game.

          • Addy

            Platinum Games? No, no, no. After making two of the three games for Activision to be bad, Star Fox Zero (it’s co-produced, I know) and having Scalebound get the axe, they have fallen from grace really hard onto the uneven, bumpy, concrete ground. Head first.

          • TruExtent

            What about their work on Nier Automata? That’s been getting good reception from what I understand. Plus I bet Scalebound would have been awesome since Kamiya was the director.

          • Addy

            I haven’t heard much about Nier… Wait wasn’t that the Drakengard spin-off, and that and the series they were meh as best?

            Yeah, I suppose Scalebound could have been good if not for Microsoft giving it the axe.

          • Hidden Flare

            I don’t know about activision but wasn’t star fox’s issue because Nintendo handled the controls and the gameplay? Everything else was liked? And it’s possible scalebound wasn’t their fault it got cancelled.

          • Addy

            Platinum Games was commissioned a total of three games by Activision, The Legend of Korra and TMNT games didn’t get a good reception, but the Transformers one was good from what I heard. I don’t blame them for Scalebound’s cancellation, but all that work gone to waste during it’s many years of development.

          • Dylan

            imthought bigredbutton strickly does all thr BOOM Games.

        • Velen (Not WoW)

          So you’re a Retro-tard, gotcha.

          • ibo

            “Retro-tard” what are you sjw ? making up new words to attack others with different views?

          • Velen (Not WoW)

            Calling someone an SJW for calling you out? You call everyone who calls you out one?

            Go back to Tumblr where you belong.

          • ibo

          • do you not have any idea what social justice is

            it’s pretty self-explanatory

          • ibo

            you hahah

          • i’m an actual sjw

          • ibo

            i know…

          • it’s pretty cool

          • ibo

            well since you are a SJW. you have been blocked.

          • need your safe space

        • Addy

          This looks familiar, oh right, you posted that same pic last year, and you were accused of being like that one person who I will not name, nor will anyone else afterwards.

          • You remember everything you post in forums? Alright then…

          • Addy

            No, not everything. Just the stuff that sticks out.

          • Lol

        • Paulinemspears

          Google is paying 97$ per hour! Work for few hours and have longer with friends & family! !mj372d:
          On tuesday I got a great new Land Rover Range Rover from having earned $8752 this last four weeks.. Its the most-financialy rewarding I’ve had.. It sounds unbelievable but you wont forgive yourself if you don’t check it
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        • Supporter

          They already have Mania for that.

          • ibo

            ya but i want to see a 3-D sonic but using classic sonic

          • Supporter

            But then it’s not really classic Sonic unless you mean Sonic R or something like that.

          • ibo

            when i say classic Sonic i’m talking about the design of the character himself not gameplay

          • Supporter

            Then what’s the difference if he looks like classic Sonic or modern Sonic? If anything, I think fans would freak out about classic Sonic in 3D gameplay so Sega wouldn’t do that.

          • ibo

            ya i just never liked the modern Sonic look…

          • Supporter

            I understand, but I think the gameplay matters more than the look πŸ™‚

          • ibo

            well the game play is just as bad in the newer sonic games πŸ˜›

          • Supporter

            Hmm… That’s subjective to say the least. I definitely don’t think the 2D Sonic games were bad. The 3D Sonic games have their problems but the 2D ones are considered to be pretty great.

    • Hedge

      It makes sense. Unless they surprise me in the future witih some more variety this is our game. Sonic Generations 2 but with Boom sonic

    • Coonfoot

      If that’s the case, I imagine Boom Sonic’s gameplay being 1/3 platforming and exploration, 1/3 brawler, 1/3 speed, and hopefully 0/3 glitchy mess. Of course, that’s if they use Rise of Lyric’s gameplay and not the 3DS games’.

      • Addy

        I’m sure after the second season has run it’s course, the Boom franchise will be over and forgotten, then Sega thinks of a way to cash-in on another TV spin-off in under a decade.

        • Hidden Flare

          While I can imagine season 2 doing bad because Cartoon Network doesn’t even give other a chance to watch it, I would say boom has a chance of appearing other areas suck as Hulu or something. Honestly I can see them trying later but only when they get a fair shoot.

    • Hidden Flare

      There is no real confirmation though, boom could just be there because the show has a popular following. It would seem odd to make boom have his own unique playstyle considering they never even made a boom game, unless they outsource for help all I see is boom being a costume or something for the other sonics. I suppose it’s possible but I honestly think they are doing a new thing with the third gameplay style.

  • anthony

    Alternative gameplay? Oh, I don’t like the sound of this. Never was a fan of any of them, except for the Werehog and Classic Sonic, so I’m hoping the third play style isn’t too bad.

    Still, nice to know the boost is back though. Hoping the stages are more open than what was shown, though.

    • Hidden Flare

      Wait if you liked classic and werehog what didn’t you like then? The wisps?

      It’s possible they will be or the third gameplay is the more open one.

      • anthony

        No, I didn’t mind the wisps. They were really just power-ups than alternative gameplay.

        What meant was stuff like the treasure hunting, mech shooting, and fishing stages of the Adventure games. That’s the stuff I didn’t like that much.

        • Hidden Flare

          Oh guess I was thinking too much modern sonic. Fair point. Treasure hunting was ok but I doubt it will be a main gameplay mode in the near future.

  • Addy

    So we got 3D running, 2D running and Special Stage as the third gameplay style, I’m calling it.

    • Hidden Flare

      Hmm that’s a good guess actually.

  • in the shadows? no it’s just been a series of bad games that still sell for some crazy reason.

  • MagcargoMan

    I wouldn’t be surprised if the third is Dreamcast Sonic. That was idea they had for generations but scrapped it.

  • Rafael Bueno

    I’m curious with this third gameplay mechanic…

  • MagcargoMan

    We’ve seen literally less than a minute’s worth of footage.

    • Justin McQuillen

      A picture is worth a thousand words, so assuming it’s a 30fps video for 60 seconds that would be 1,800,000 words of info we have here. I think that’s enough to critique. Mina is right, this did look quite lame and that’s coming from a huge lifelong sonic fan that owns every sega console including 32x and sega cd. If there is enough info here that I could name some things I like about it, there is enough here to critique as well.

      • Velen (Not WoW)

        Yeah, problem is you’re only critiquing one part of the whole. your critique is incomplete.

        Doesn’t make it invalid, but it will make it harder for others to listen.

  • dbizal

    RIP Sonic.

  • DeltaPeng

    Not sure about the vid as it reminds me of the mobile Sonic game, but Sonic Colors and Generations were pretty solid (from the little I played)