New Sonic Frontiers Takashi Iizuka Interview Discusses Gameplay Mechanics, Tone & Sonic’s Character; New Screenshots & Footage

Gamespot recently conducted an interview with Sonic Team’s creative officer, Takashi Iizuka, regarding Sonic Frontiers following their playing of the demo at Summer Games Fest. As a result, a vast slew of new footage is also intermittently showcased throughout this video.

Player choice is stated as one of the title’s primary selling points, with players able to choose whether they want to extensively pursue battles, action platforming, or puzzles. Of course, a semblance of moderate balance is required across every gameplay mechanic for the average player. Still, the depth of these avenues does not have to be fully parsed or embraced for natural progression.

Battling is discussed as one of the three key pillars of the game, with attack and defense stats being mentioned. Their upgradeable effects, notably for the latter, were not talked about, though. Sonic still drops rings when damaged, and this is speculation on my part, but I would think that higher defense would equate to fewer rings being lost per hit. These points were not clarified in the video, however.

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Story and presentation are discussed by Iizuka next, stating that the narrative this time around is not as directly told as in previous Sonic games. Instead, mystery is a core focus, with players discovering various facets of the storyline via exploration. The comical tone identifiable from prior games is not quite so present here, either. Ian Flynn’s contributions are mentioned, too, which help keep the dialogue and Sonic’s character accurate to what fans enjoy.

The interviewer questions later puzzle complexity, but it’s not directly answered by Iizuka, who instead reiterates the freedom of choice with progression. Personally, this seems to imply that the puzzles likely stay relatively simple throughout the entire experience, but that is purely speculation. Lastly, Sonic’s speed when racing from one end of the island to the other was used as a test to determine the setting’s size to better accommodate his speed.

Reliable Sonic fansite, Tails Channel, has been compiling recent news on their Twitter page. Of the new information, fishing has been mentioned alongside the skill tree. Details regarding the former have not been stated, though.

New official screenshots have been provided as well, viewable via our gallery below:

The Gamer recently released their preview impressions of the title, stating that there are a “dozen or so sliders that allow you to customize the way Sonic controls,” along with “five different sliders related to Sonic’s speed, as well as turning, acceleration, resistance, and more.” However, it is worth clarifying that the player who provided this information isn’t aware if these settings are exclusive to the demo, or if they’ll also be in the full game.

The loop ability that Sonic utilizes is also clarified to be spelled “Cycloop.”

Also of note are Memory Token collectibles used to free Sonic’s allies, and The Gamer stated that collecting Amy’s provided “some kind of digital imprint of her from a futuristic jail cell.” Tails is briefly mentioned at the demo’s start, and Eggman is also present.

Several other gaming outlets have shared their impressions of the demo, with many, like PCGamesN, stating that there are two control styles, Action, and High-Speed. The latter is meant for those familiar with Sonic games, while the former is intended for those desiring a more conventional/non-speed-centric control scheme.

Interestingly, the writer of the PCGamesN impression piece stated in a tweet that he didn’t see any customization options beyond those aforementioned control styles. It potentially contradicts the information provided by The Gamer which stated that there are several sliders adjusting various factors regarding Sonic’s control.

You can view the full Gamespot interview with Takashi Iizuka below:

They also shared another video sharing their reactions to the gameplay with tidbits of new footage, not in the previous video, viewable below:

Sonic Frontiers is releasing for PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S, Nintendo Switch, and PC in Holiday 2022.

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Orpheus Joshua

Random gamer equally confused by the mainstream and the unusual.