Famitsu, popular Japanese video game magazine, have published an interview that they had with Takashi Iizuka, the current head of Sonic Team. As well as being in charge of the team Iizuka has also had hands in development, production, level design, character design, and writing of Sonic games throughout the years. In this interview, Iizuka spoke of both the upcoming Sonic the Hedgehog titles; Sonic Mania, and Sonic Forces. While the interview was conducted in Japanese it has since been translated by a variety of sources including SourceGaming who tweeted out information as it was translated.
Beginning with Sonic Forces information the game has been in development since 2013 and was already being worked on by the time that Sonic Lost World released. In this game there will be three different playable characters; Sonic and Classic Sonic. The way that each of their levels play will be similar to that of Sonic Generations, Iizuka also teased that there will also be a third playable character that will "play an important role in the story." This character is set to be revealed this year during E3. In Sonic Forces Dr. Eggman will have already taken over the majority of the world due to a new power that he has obtained, but it is that same power that summons this third character and will lead to his undoing. The game's director will be Morio Kishimoto who has previously worked on the design of Sonic games Secret Rings, Black Knight, and Colors. He was also the director for Sonic Lost World.
Sonic Mania, which will be the first completely 2D title in the franchise since Sonic Episode 4, originally began development back in 2015. The idea was spawned from Sonic Team wanting to create a 2D Sonic game but they didn't want to create a remake of a previous title. As they were designing Mania the team gave themselves a rule to create a classic Sonic feeling by allowing themselves to create graphics above the quality that was permissible on the SEGA Genesis, but no greater than that of the SEGA Saturn. Some returning features from previous titles will include gameplay elements of Sonic 3 such as elemental shields.
What do you think of the sound of Sonic Forces? Are you ready for a new Sonic adventure? Do you prefer the 3D, 2D, or these mixed titles?