We may not have a definitive release date yet, but with a tentative release window of Spring, that means that Sonic Mania is just around the corner. The blue hedgehog has had a rough time in recent years, but based on what we’ve seen and played, this return to the series’ retro routes looks set to be just the shot in the arm the series needs. What’s more, Sega have only increased the anticipation by releasing brand new footage featuring none other than the Green Hill Zone Act 2.
This brand new footage, which comes by way of the official Sonic Youtube channel, features more than just speed run through the very fist act from Sonic the Hedgehog. Here we’re re-introduced to a range of familiar mechanics from older titles, such as zip-wires, similar stage transitions to Sonic 3 & Knuckles, and even power-ups like the fireball. In fact, look close enough and you’ll spot that the fireball now interacts with the environment and burns down the spiked bridge.
It’s not all returning features though, as Sega executive Aaron Webber who provides commentary explains. Not only does he state that players can expect to find new enemies called the “Hard-Boiled Heavies”, but he also goes on to tease a brand new boss at the end of the act. Though sadly Sega aren’t ready to reveal that just yet.
On top of this footage, Sega also revealed a range of brand new screenshots and concept art. One of which showcases fan favourite Knuckles the Echidna battling the “Heavy Gunner”, Studiopolis Zone’s brand new boss, alongside another of him climbing in the Green Hill Zone. The third image on the other hand is a piece of concept art taking a closer look at Studiopolis Zone’s new boss, one that Sega revealed to be the leader of the Hard-Boiled Heavies, and described as “a large, decorated robot who can take to the sky with his helicopter”.
So, will Sonic Mania finally break the curse the Sonic the Hedgehog series has found itself under since the early 2000’s? Well it’s certainly looking more and more like this could be a return to form for everyone’s favourite hedgehog. Something we also confirmed when we went hands on at EGX last year.
Either way, there’s not long left to find out, as Sonic Mania arrives for PS4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch and PC very soon. Let’s hope Sega’s next reveal includes a definitive release date too.