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Sonic Colours

Iizuka-San on reclaiming Sonic's former glory

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It's not like the game isn't for the PS3 or 360 - actually this game would probably work with those core audiences, the more action audience as well. The thought behind this game was also that the team wanted to capitalise on how far the Sonic franchise has expanded itself through the Mario and Sonic games. Obviously those were on the Nintendo platform and more family friendly. We wanted to take this opportunity to introduce 3D Sonic games to people who may not have played Sonic and provide a new Sonic game to those audiences.

So if you're an Xbox or PlayStation owner and you want a 3D Sonic this year, you'll have to get a Wii?

So it's not like Sonic is for this platform, it's just that this one in particular was made for this purpose. In the case of 3D the answer that question is probably yes. At the same time we're also releasing Sonic 4 which is available to PSN and XBLA, so Sonic is obviously available as multiplatform as well.

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On the subject of Sonic 4, it was originally due out this Summer. Could you explain the slip and why it went back a little bit?

Originally the game was supposed to come out in summer this year. While it wasn't really apparent at the time, we announced this as a PSN, XBLA and WiiWare title but at the same time the iPhone version of Sonic 4 was also in development.

The team wanted the game to work really well on the iPhone with the same stages and the same kind of mechanics as the platform versions, but it didn't really work the way the team imagined.

What they did was they kept the iPhone version closer to the original and they went back to the console version and changed some stages to be better playable on console. That's the reason behind the delay and the extension in the development schedule.

Do you think Sonic needs to change to be popular and relevant in ten years time?

This is one of the challenges that the team faces in development and obviously the Colour power is something new that the team wanted to offer to the fans. At the same time the team feels like Sonic has his style - there are areas of Sonic that cannot be changed because he is such as unique character. Those areas are probably the high-speed nature, his characteristics themselves and platforming style.

This year the reason the team is releasing Sonic 4 and Sonic Colours in the same release window is because we recognise there are different needs in terms of Sonic games and characters. There is the platforming, the high-speed and people looking for something new. This is the style that the team thinks works best, looking at the classic fans in one way and the new one in another.

It's pretty hard for the team to satisfy those two very different fans with just one title. We probably look forward to developing titles which are made more towards the core and casual Sonic fans, that's probably one of the ways the team thinks it can keep Sonic popular and expand fans for the future.

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