Arron Webber, the voice behind the blue blur’s social media, had a interview recently with PlayStation Insider and it was a very interesting read. The interview covers a lot of ground about Sonic Mania, Aaron’s view of the game and more, so will be quoting the most interesting parts of the interview below.
With a planned release in spring of next year, Sega is releasing a homage to the 2D Sonic franchise named Sonic Mania. It’s exactly what you would expect from a Sonic game. A 2D side-scrolling platform game developed in the exact same fashion as the originals, bringing back levels with extras and twists for the 25th anniversary of Sonic. The game is coming to PS4, so be sure to keep updated on news for the exact release date.
At PAX West this year we were able to interview the official Sonic Twitter public representative Aaron Webber, about the game and what it has to show for the coming future.
The following is an interview conducted by Dan Thompson of PlayStation Insider.
Dan: What’s up PlayStation Insiders! My name is Dan, here, with the one-and-only runner of the Sonic Twitter.
Aaron Webber: Hi my name is Aaron Webber from Sega.
Dan: Awesome, so Sonic Mania was shown at that Sonic party at Comic-con that was really fun. What’s the difference between making Sonic Mania and Sonic 4? What makes you guys want to go back to hand-drawn sprites of the original Sonic games?
Aaron Webber: Great question. Internally in Sega there was a lot of discussion about ways to kinda go back to what was that really made Sonic so great in the old days. One of the interesting things with Mania is that we had the chance to bring in some of the developers who were fans of the old days that are now professionals. One of those guys, his name is Christian Whitehead (Taxman) , he did the mobile ports for Sonic 1 and 2 and Sonic CD along with a guy named Stealth or Simon Thomley. So we actually brought them on along with a group called PagodaWest and in collaboration with Sonic Team those guys are making Sonic Mania. The reason I think this is really cool and special is because the first times we’ve ever done that. The amount of passion and the dedication these guys have with their craft into making this game as good as it can be is pretty spectacular and it really does show as you look at the game and even play through it.
Dan: I’ve been following Taxman ever since he’s been making those fan games, he really has an eye for quality with his animations and gameplay. I’m really excited for Sonic Mania. So are these all entirely new levels or is this like a mixtape of Sonic’s greatest levels from the 2D era?
Aaron Webber: It’s a mixtape but the mixtape has a lot of remixes you’ve never heard before so you’re like “oh I know this one!” Then you get to a part and you’re like “oh wait a minute this is brand new.” Green Hill Zone is a great example, it starts exactly how you would expect it to minus the original was 30 FPS now it’s 60 FPS. We have new animations, there are loads of new stuff. And as you go through Green Hill Zone you get to that loop-de-loop moment and you realize at the top of the loop there is an electric shield from Sonic 3 and you think, “wait a minute that’s not supposed to be there.” And then you realize that there’s a whole upper path that didn’t exist before, and you realize there’s a lower path where you actually go into the caverns below Green Hill Zone. Then there’s a whole new background for the sprites and everything. You get to the end and there is a mini-boss Sonic 3 style and you go “oh my gosh this is completely different from the Green Hill Zone I used to know.”
That’s Act 1 just so you know. Just Act 1 of Green Hill Mania is — Act 1 and Act 2 and more– from the original Sonic. Which is kinda amazing they put so much in there. And we have Studiopolis. So Studiopolis is a whole new level — all the background stuff is new — there are tons of references to Sega and Sonic easter eggs. There is the Sega Sonic popcorn shop, Daytona USA, Streets of Rage, there”s an ATV signal in the back, there are tons of stuff. That level it is pretty amazing to play it the first time because you have never seen it before and never experienced it.
Source: PlayStation Insider