Sonic Team boss Takashi Iizuka has told Eurogamer Sonic the Hedgehog 4: Episode 2’s physics were based on the Sonic games released during the Mega Drive era.
According to Iizuka, the engine was built from the ground up after complaints from fans said Episode 1 didn’t feel “natural.”
“When we started developing Episode 1, we already had plans for Episode 2 in our minds,” he said. “What we were thinking of doing was having Tails in Episode 2. So, that was already in the very beginning, at the start of Episode 1. Having released Episode 1, we had a lot of feedback from the community. People were quite vocal about certain things, namely the physics. They had some very specific points they wanted to raise about the physics. We were determined to make sure we addressed those issues.
“With Episode 1 we built the physics from the ground up. This time, rather than adding to it, we went back to the original Mega Drive Sonic games and we looked at the physics from them. We tried to make sure we replicated the things people were keen about for Episode 2. That’s the way we addressed it.
“I wanted to make sure people could play the game and it not feel unnatural,” he said. “It should feel right. Rather than thinking of it as us trying to say, ‘okay, this is the way it should be,’ we looked at feedback where people were saying, ‘this feels unnatural.’
“Those were the things we decided to eliminate, so it should feel natural when they play the game.”
Iizuka said with Episode 1, the concept was a continuation of Sonic the Hedgehog 1, 2 and 3 on the Mega Drive.
“To really drive home that concept to the consumers, we decided to include stages people had seen before and tap into that nostalgia factor,” he said. “Essentially we wanted people to recognize this was a continuation from the Mega Drive era Sonics. That’s why those stages were selected in Sonic 4 Episode 1.
“In Episode 2, we wanted to make sure there was consistency. Our thought process was, half nostalgia, half new surprises and experiences. So there are some levels you’ve seen before and will recognise, and certain gimmicks and elements you’ll recognise from the Mega Drive era. But there are also stages we’ve included to make sure there’s content you’ve never seen before.”
Episode 2 doesn’t have a set release date but it’s out this year for XBL, PSN, iOS, and Android.