Sonic the Hedgehog reached a milestone birthday in 2021 — 30 years old. Sega celebrated its long-running franchise all year long with special events, merchandise, and even the release of Sonic Colors: Ultimate, a remaster of the Wii video game. Many fans had hoped to also see the next mainline Sonic title, Sonic Frontiers, but the anniversary year came and went with no release. However, Sega and Sonic Team did offer a glimpse at the game in December. Here’s everything we know about Sonic Frontiers so far, including its release date estimate, trailer, and more.
The ‘Sonic Frontiers’ release date was pushed from 2021 to 2022
A Sega investor Q&A in December revealed that Sega did initially plan to release Sonic Frontiers in 2021 to align with the 30th anniversary. However, the publisher decided to hold off to “further brush up the quality.”
“Not only for this title, but during the development phase, we have been steadily conducting analysis to improve the quality of the title before release, such as introducing game testing based on external evaluations, and [we] have a feeling that it will become a good game and have high expectations for it,” the Q&A read.
The Q&A came one week after Sega and Sonic debuted the Sonic Frontiers trailer. In the video, the release date was advertised as “holiday 2022.” At the moment, there’s no official Sonic Frontiers release date. If the team sticks to “holiday 2022,” it should arrive in November or December.
Sonic Team debuted the ‘Sonic Frontiers’ trailer at The Game Awards 2021
Fans saw the first Sonic Frontiers trailer at The Game Awards 2021, the industry’s biggest night of announcements and accolades. The video highlights the franchise’s first-ever venture into the open-world genre as Sonic explores Starfall Islands, a vast landscape filled with different biomes.
In the video, Sonic attempts to escape three strange aircraft in a forest. They explode before reaching him. After the chase, the clip cuts to several scenes of different environments in Starfall Islands. In the end, Sonic appears to prepare for battle with a giant robot. Check out the full trailer above.
‘Sonic Frontiers’ format channels ‘The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild’ vibes
Many fans couldn’t help but notice something about Sonic Frontiers: it looked an awful lot like Nintendo’s The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild. Although very little is known about the gameplay so far, Sonic Frontiers appears to take after Breath of the Wild’s beautiful and critically-acclaimed scenery.
An open-world game is certainly a different direction for a Sonic title. Most of the franchise’s previous installments have leaned into the fast-paced platformer style. However, this time around, Sonic Team wanted to try something new.
Speaking to Sonic Stadium, Sonic Team creative lead Takashi Iizuka said he hoped Sonic Frontiers would shape the future of the franchise, just like Sonic Adventure did in 1998.
“Sonic Adventure laid the foundation for 20 years of Sonic titles after its release, so in the same way, I really hope that this new title releasing in 2022 lays the foundation for the following future Sonic titles – that is the idea behind the challenge for the team,” he said.
Stay tuned to Showbiz Cheat Sheet for news on Sonic Frontiers, Sonic the Hedgehog 2, and more.
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