Sonic Frontiers Is “The Future Of Sonic,” Says Creative Officer

Sonic Frontiers puts Sega’s beloved blue hedgehog into an open world–one that looks a whole lot like the Hyrule we explore in The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild. The new setting transforms the traditional gameplay loop for a Sonic game, creating what the Sonic Team views as the future of the franchise.

“In Sonic’s history, we’ve had the 2D side-scrolling gameplay [and] the 3D, more linear format where you have Sonic starting someplace and going to a goal on a track,” Sonic Team creative officer Takashi Iizuka told me at Summer Game Fest Play Days. “This is going to be the next iteration, this is like the future of Sonic–we wanted to make something that really embraced freedom and the freedom to run around wherever you want.”

I got to play a bit of Frontiers at Play Days and the game is unlike any Sonic game I’ve played before. The open 3D environment creates a playground for Sonic’s speed, allowing for platforming challenges that really force you to stop and think about how to approach and solve them. As Sonic isn’t just traveling from the left side of the screen to the right on a 2D plane, or running straight ahead on a 3D one, you suddenly have choices for how to approach specific platforming challenges as opposed to being on-railed to the solution.

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