Find the footage after break. Now, say it with us -- if we say it loud enough, maybe it will come true -- please be good!
So, potentially good news then. Dare we have the audacity to hope that Sonic Unleashed might actually be good?
Well, after on the worst media leaks we've ever seen, it was really, really, obvious that Sega had a new Sonic game in the works. Though Sega remained tight-lipped, most out there knew gameplay footage (early as it was) when they saw it. So now, a relative infinity later, we have have the official response from Sega declaring the: "Latest Installment to Extend Sonic's Signature Style. but with a Twist!" (we swear that period is not our typo, straight Ctrl-C, Ctrl-V from the press release). The press release doesn't have a whole lot of details, but as with every other major Sonic release a ton of promises for the game are made. The funny part is that we would genuinely be excited about everything in the press release, were it not for previous broken promises with the franchise. The best snippets of the press release can be found after the break.
One of our loyal X3F Army tipsters has outed himself as an employee of GameStop, but to make up for it he sent us a camera phone image of a few release dates. While you should take these dates with a grain of salt some of them are accurate, specifically Ninja Gaiden 2, Soul Calibur IV and Civilization Revolution.
Fueling the fire of the Sega's Sonic Unleashed leak is a release date of November 4 for the Xbox 360, PS3, Wii and PS2. EA's NFL Head Coach 09 is slated for a September 3 release and based on the release of the original in relation to Madden, the time frame seems accurate. A few titles we haven't heard much from are Bethesda Softworks' Rogue Warrior (November 10) and Edios Interactive's Shellshock 2: Blood Trails (September 1), which is being developed by the team at Rebellion.
Other dates include Sierra's Prototype from Radical and the Xbox 360 exclusive Splinter Cell: Conviction from Ubisoft which are dated for October 21 and October 2 respectfully.
Remember, pre-order focused retailers tend to guess-timate releases on a regular basis to structure their sales goals for the final two quarters of the year. However, some of the names on this list make us really glad we have a rumor category.
[Update: It seems Sega magazine has removed the "press info" from its site. Be warned, the information contained within this post just shifted from official back to rumor]
Wow. Within less than 24 hours, we have rumors, a leak, a video, and now an
"Sonic the Hedgehog returns for a full-blown, action-packed adventure through the desolate and unpredictable World of Mubuz, a world dictated by an evil Dragon Lord, Immarius. Upon entering Muboz, Sonic fights an evil power which turns all the inhabitants into dangerous beasts.
- Become Wolf Sonic and fight enemies like never before using rapid combo maneuvers and Ring Energy
- Play as Sonic, Knuckles or Tails through 12 packed stages
- Extensive 2D gameplay brings the old Sonic back home"
Even with that limited amount of info at hand, we can say it is good to hear that there will be no extraneous characters. Now remember that the only reason we have this info is due to a leak, so it's likely we won't hear anything more about this until nearly E3. And while we would have liked to have a more "old-fashioned" Sonic story (Robotnik should be bad guy #1) and don't really care for Wolf Sonic, we're willing to give it a try as long as it is blissfully free of anything like this.
As for the shots themselves, they're really clean and have a Blue Dragon quality about them. With locations ranging from Africa to Eggman's lair, and no signs of Sonic's "city" (cursing by rhyme...) friends, could we be seeing signs of a good Sonic game on the horizon? Possibly, if the lack of subtitles is pointing to a more "Subspace Emissary" take on the Sonic cutscenes, with a total lack of dialog, just using animation to tell the story (also similar to the Lego games). The only downside right now appears to be the gameplay screens, which hint at a Sonic and the Secret Rings style of gameplay. At the moment there is still no word as to the platform this will land on, but if it's following the footsteps of Secret Rings, we may have to end up handing this one off.
[Update: Images pulled on request from Sega of America's Sr. Legal Counsel.]