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Sonic Mania |OT| Dreams Come True


SONIC MANIA & Knuckles
Platforms: Playstation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, PC
Developed by: PagodaWest Games in collaboration with Christian Whitehead, Headcannon, Tantalus, SEGA, Sonic Team and a number of amazing freelancers
Published by: SEGA
Price: $19.99/£15.99 on consoles, $17.99/£14.99 on PC
Release date: August 15th 2017 (consoles), August 29th 2017 (PC) (sorry)

A long time ago, there existed a brave little rabbit hedgehog, who like all good people just wanted a quiet, way past cool life, but wasn't going to prioritise that above bringing the hurt down on a ego-maniacal bane of nature going around enslaving the animals of Mobius South Island in robotic armour. This hedgehog was special in a number of ways. Firstly, he was kind of like a person, which is weird when all the other animals in the first game were just critters, like at least they explained Crash Bandicoot was an experiment, what the hell is Sonic meant to b- anyway. Secondly, he is-

- rather fast. This meant he could run round loops, roll down hills and cannonball through hordes of Badniks, turning them to dust before they can even circumvent the laws of robotics.

And this was fun. The levels were designed so failure to platform isn't necessarily punished, you're just dropped to an alternate route to explore. Maybe that route has some extra lives or some shields or just a chilli-dog-truck-load of rings to collect. Maybe it even has a special stage entrance or a Metal Sonic hologram or a weird angel statue. And the thrill of buzzing around a loop, building up that amazing sense of speed, moments like Chemical Plant Zone where Sonic threatened to rip out of the side of your telly - it wasn't just a good way of showing up a certain Italian-Japanese rival, it was - is - a damn good time.

And then a lot of other stuff happened.

The tale of Taxman and Stealth has been told a bunch now - I think Kotaku's brief history of Sonic fan games would get anyone up to speed - but basically their work both building a modern game engine versatile enough for a variety of platforms, and then perfecting the physics of Mega Drive Sonic across years of fan games, led to them getting the opportunity to bring Sonic The Hedgehog CD to a wider audience in 2011. The port - well, remake really - is flawless, building the game from the ground-up and embracing of the freedom of their own code to do things like add a playable Tails. That work led to the twosome giving Sonic the Hedgehog and Sonic the Hedgehog 2 the same treatment for mobile, bringing enhancements like Knuckles' first official appearance in the first Sonic and a cancelled level erected from the ashes in Sonic 2's Hidden Palace Zone.

But what next? With no sign of Sonic 3 & Knuckles landing on mobile, this brief re-birth of Sonic was fizzling out, until then... at a otherwise disastrous fan event adjacent to Comic-Con, SEGA introduced the first new official "Classic Sonic" game to the world. Sonic Mania.

Sonic The Hedgehog

Sonic. He can really move. Sonic. He's got an attitude. Don't doubt what he can do, yeah? Mania features the debut of his Drop Dash, which lets him drop... to the floor from mid-air and... dash, instantly. Finally he's almost as cool as Knuckles.

Miles "Tails" Prower

He can fly! And also carry Sonic, so you should just go Sonic + Tails and get speed and the opportunity to cheese every level! No word yet on whether he will sabotage Special Stages runs.

Knuckles The Echidna

With the great Emerald's power - wait, hang on, that hasn't happened yet. With his own internal strength, Knux can glide through the air, climb up walls and chuckle with youthful abandon.

Sonic Mania features reportedly a "quite large"
I know the exact number but spoilers and that
number of stages. A mix of both classic stages and brand new zones, the confirmed official list so far:

  • Green Hill Zone
  • Chemical Plant Zone
  • Stardust Speedway
  • Flying Battery Zone
  • Studiopolis Zone
  • Mirage Saloon Zone

Note that the classic stages only take the aesthetic of the original, and for Act 1 at least some of the familiar level design - for all intents and purposes these are also brand new levels. Many incorporating elements normally seen in other levels or even other games, such as good old GHZ having prominent Fire Shield use. So even if you're concerned the amount of "new" in this game is low, well, you're wrong! The good kind of wrong!

Mania also features brand new Special Stages, in which your chosen hero turns all low-poly in a challenge that mashes up Sonic CD's UFO catching challenges with the foot-racing of Sonic 2, except hopefully better. It can only be better. Beat all these special stages to get all the Chaos Emeralds, and maybe something cool will happen...?

It's also worth noting all stages have music composed or arranged by Tee Lopes, notable in the Sonic fanbase for years of great new arrangements of classic Sonic music. The snippets shared by the Sonic Youtube page sound great.

On top of that, there's also bonus stages based on Sonic 3 & Knuckles' "Blue Sphere" special stages, a two-player competition mode, time attacks, and even a gnarly CRT filter for if you're the worst.


Thanks for reading, everyone. I am so incredibly excited for this game, and it really does feel like it's been a long time coming, between the crazy work of the fan community all these years to the re-emergence of Sonic's classic form and aesthetic since 2011. Please go support this game every way you can if you want to see more!

Thanks to Guess Who for the improved banners!
Sonic Mania |OT| Dreams Come True (Except for PC Owners...Then It's Denuvo Come True)

While it sucks that me and others have to wait the end of the month to enjoy this game, hope the console people has fun with the game. From the music I heard and the gameplay I've seen, this looks like an awesome Sonic game...and I'm not even that big of a fan.
Having my dream Sonic game launch on my birthday is already the best gift you could ever imagine. I'm thinking of the PS4 and Switch version, already have my Switch version pre-ordered and ready to go!

Watch Da Birdie

I buy cakes for myself on my birthday it's not weird lots of people do it I bet

2 > 3 > Knuckles > 1 >>>>>>>>>>> CD

My biggest fear is the levels are going to be too CD-zany in Mania, which I never cared for. As a kid I never got to play CD and always thought it looked amazing, then I finally got a chance with the Sonic Gem Collection and...well. It wasn't fun at all navigating those levels. Even some of 3's levels I used to enjoy as a kid like Marble Garden felt tedious when I went back to it a few years ago, though I used to always play as Tails instead of Sonic so I guess things were "easier".

Hoping this game recaptures the magic of when I was a kid and loved Sonic. My grandfather introduced me to the series and now he's slowly losing his mental faculties/becoming a Trump supporter, and it fucking sucks---maybe I'll bring my Switch over one day and play old-school Sonic with him. :/


My CE shipped on Friday with a delivery estimate of tomorrow. Can't wait for that "SEEEEEGAAAAA!" Sonic statue.

Also, the game will be amazing as well. So excited.

Thanks for the OT!


Can't wait for this; have it preloaded on ps4 for the trophies, gonna get it on Switch as well for the portability. I normally never double dip on new games like this, but after playing it at E3 this is everything I've ever wanted out of a Sonic game. This is gonna be something special


I wanted to avoid the leak thread so how is the Switch version performance wise? Great OP BTW. Still on the fence with my collectors box though.
Thanks for keeping this relatively spoiler free; I am immensely anticipating this and thus wanna geek out online, but I really don't wanna see anything that hasn't been officially revealed. Even so, I've avoided almost all videos since Mirage Saloon from a few months ago, including the opening video, so I'm tryna go in as clean as possible!

I'm really happy SEGA are pushing through with this, and going all out; the stylish intro and awesome production values that pay homage to the classics while trying something new tell me that SEGA have a lot of confidence in this. If it succeeds, which I believe it will, I hope SEGA allow for an even more ambitious title after this.

I'd love to see them go crazy with the next game; all original stages, new art style perhaps inspired by the opening intro, etc?
Excited for this!

Used to be a big Sonic fan as a kid, but haven't played the series in ages. This looks like it's totally on point though.


I am so ready for this. I just wish the unlock for it on X1 wasn't 11am on Tuesday. I want to fire this up as of midnight tomorrow. But oh well.

Sorry PC players.
I'm hoping for Amy to be included as a secret unlockable at the end. She would function rather well as an alternative hard mode ala Sonic Advance, plus it'd just be cool to play as her with her classic design.

It's really cool they're making this; I almost thought Generations was gonna be the last Sonic game to truly be excited over. Very glad they're making something almost purely done for classic fans! In a way very different to, say, NSMB. The visuals and music all give off these vibes that really pay homage to the classics in a way Nintendo were fearful of when designing the very vanilla-looking NSMB series. They really should take note when designing the next 2D Mario game.
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