Sonic the Hedgehog 4 Episode I now available on Blackberry PlayBook

The game is now available to download for $6.99 in the US and £7.00 in the UK.

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Zavvi.com reveals new S&ASR Transformed details

UK online retailer Zavvi.com has revealed details on Sonic and All-Stars Racing: Transformed. Here’s a brief list of details from TSS.

Tracks feature multiple routes, including shortcuts.

  •  27 characters, not including the 3 guest characters.
  •  As well as ordinary power-ups, racers can find ‘Super power-ups’ hidden in the tracks.
  •  Story mode features 16 tracks, where you unlock other characters.
  •  Racing earns points for your chosen racer’s rank through a five rank leveling system.
  •  As you rank up, you unlock achievements, perk style vehicle modifications and more.
  •  Online multiplayer supports eight players. Grand Prix mode and battle mode are now playable online.

Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed is the brilliant racing video game developed by Sumo Digital, and is now brought to you on the Wii U, Nintendo’s innovative gaming platform. This game is the eagerly anticipated sequel to Sonic & Sega All-Stars Racing, which was released in 2010. Ideal for retro SEGA enthusiasts or fun with family and friends, this graphically overhauled game offers exhilarating co-operative and competitive racing gameplay that can appeal to all ages.

Racing Transformed has, literally, transformed the way Sonic and the Sega All-Stars characters race, as now their karts transform into boats and planes when the terrain gives way to water or air. The tracks themselves are based upon retro Sega games, and they also change; the Panzer Dragoon inspired track Dragon Canyon has a dragon that roams the map and destroys a bridge early on in the race. This therefore forces the players to continue racing around the track either via their planes or boats, and means that every track has endless possibilities and versatility when it comes to gameplay. Each track also has many possible routes to take, including a number of shortcuts to be found throughout, offering a great deal of replayability for each course.

Alongside Sonic, a great deal of new and familiar characters emerge to join in this kart racing frenzy, adding up to 27 characters in total. These range from and include older fan favourites such as Gillius from Golden Axe, Joe Musashi from Shinobi, Vyse from Skies of Arcadia, along with the likes of Tails, Knuckles, and more. Each character’s vehicle handles differently, meaning that who you play best as is entirely up to your own personal playing style. You can perform tricks in every vehicle, which means that the All-Star meter, will fill up the more stylishly and daringly you drive; this leads to gaining experience points, and also your character’s All-Star Move should you fill up the bar, which can also be filled by collecting stars that are littered around the track.

Each course you race through has power-ups that can be found throughout, which can be used to throw off your opponents. These range from snowballs, bees, and also offers a defensive power-up, the baseball mitt, which acts as a shield and absorbs the power-up attacks your opponents throw at you and allows you to use them yourself instead. Super power-ups can be found in various hidden and hard to reach areas within the track, definitely giving you the advantage over the rest of the competition, and meaning that each race can be unique no matter how many times you play.

There is an extensive story mode that features sixteen brand spanking new Sega game-inspired tracks, which allows you to unlock characters as you progress throughout. You also earn points for your chosen character for completing races, which add up into a five rank levelling system, unlocking achievements, perk style vehicle modifications, and more, the more races you complete. These modifications can be equipped to alter the handling characteristics of your favourite character’s vehicle, amongst other things. Racing Transformed also offers overhauled multiplayer modes; whilst there is still the incredibly fun split-screen multiplayer, now there is an enhanced online multiplayer mode. Whilst playing and competing online, online races can support up to eight characters at once per race, ranging from the Grand Prix mode and the competitive Battle Arenas, and allows for new track records to be set.

The wide range of gameplay available within this game means that there is something for every Sega and racing game fan out there to enjoy. Whether playing solo, online, co-operatively or competitively, get stuck in and enjoy drifting round every corner, soaring through Sega’s signature blue skies, or speeding through the waves in a wide range of tracks that offer almost endless replayability.

[Source: Zavvi.com and TSS]

 

How Sonic got westernised?

After Naoto Oshima, Yuji Naka, Hirokazu Yasuhara et al,  made Sonic the Hedgehog, they were about to introduce to SEGA’s U.S. division, SEGA of America, Inc.

While at SEGA of America, the people there were very weary of Sonic’s design. Having taken cues of American culture but having an animal not common in America as the type of animal the character, a hedgehog, which was common Japan, as well as Europe, but not common in the US.  Then SEGA of America went into full panic mode and they would more likely choose alternate designs to suit American tastes.

In order to make it suit audiences in America (as well as other Western nations),  SEGA of America needed change the plotline, such as discarding real islands in the Pacific and Indian Oceans, such as Christmas Island and South Island and originally intended to be replaced with somewhere in America.

Also the Western plotlines say that Sonic was originally a brown hedgehog called “Sonny Hedgehog” that eventually became a blue hedgehog called Sonic.

However later this was replaced with a animal inhabited planet called “Mobius”, never used in Japan, but a world based on it was later used in modern Sonic games to this day, simply not having a name.

Dean Sitton, a SEGA of America help line employee wanted all the robot animals, which would become “badniks”, a term still used by Western Sonic fans to this day, to be renamed; such as Motora being renamed Motorbug in the Western release.

Also, Dr. Eggman was to renamed too, changing his name to Dr. Ivo Robotnik for the Western release, the most recognizable Western rename of a Sonic character. Ivo being pronounced like “evil” for an American person.

However these names along with later names like Floating Island, which was the Western name for Angel island and Nack the Weasel, the Western name for Fang the Sniper, continued to be used in the West until the release of Sonic Adventure which was released in the West in 1999, being released in Japan the previous year.

 

 

SEGA releases new Sonic Adventure 2 screenshots.

SEGA has now released new screenshots for Sonic Advenutre 2 in HD for PlayStation Store and XBLA.

LONDON & SAN FRANCISCO— 16th Jul, 2012 — In a totally unexpected, surprise announcement at the 2012 Sonic Boom community fan-fest during San Diego Comic-Con, SEGA® Europe Ltd. and SEGA® of America, Inc. have officially announced the upcoming HD remake of legendary Dreamcast title Sonic Adventure 2™ for PlayStation®Network and Xbox LIVE® Arcade for the Xbox 360® video game and entertainment system from Microsoft.

The game that first introduced the world to Sonic’s darker counterpart, Shadow the Hedgehog, Sonic Adventure 2 has players exploring two unique storylines from the perspectives of both long time heroes and new and returning villains in a battle for the fate of the world. First released in 2001 and hailed as one of the last great Dreamcast releases, this unmissable Sonic story will feature high-definition graphics, leaderboards, achievement/trophy support, and more when it hits consoles later this year.

SEGA wants Sonic to be popular as Hello Kitty

What do you mean be popular as Hello Kitty? Sonic is already a popular videogame character but it wants Sonic to be as popular as Hello Kitty.

According to Jurgen Post of SEGA Europe Ltd:

“Sonic is a well-known character, but we’ve got a lot of room to grow in merchandising,” he told MCV.

“We dream of Hello Kitty. We’re still far off from that but we can see that our profits are growing year on year in the US and Europe [on merchandising].

“We’ve got a licensing team on the ground in the UK who are focusing on that and that team will expand. We’ve got a team in the US and which will also expand. We used to run it all out of Sega of Japan, but having people on the ground is making a big difference.

“We will always do the computer game but the merchandising is a very important aspect to Sonic.”