Earlier this year, it was revealed that Sega was doing some restructuring and relocating and would not be attending E3 2015. Since then, it seems Sega did some some soul searching, because in early July, CEO and President Naoki Satomi publicly apologized to fans of the company and their games for delivering underwhelming games so frequently over the past decade or so. Up until that point, people were fairly certain Sega was completely lacking self-awareness, so it came as a nice surprise, but Sega fans have been let down repeatedly in the past. They generally know not to get their hopes too high, but the latest news might just be evidence enough that Satomi was serious.
Sega’s upcoming installment to the Sonic the Hedgehog franchise, Sonic Boom: Fire and Ice, has been delayed. At the moment, the delay is indefinite, but the game is likely to release sometime in 2016, as opposed to the previous vague release date of “late 2015.” The news was made public via Sega’s official blog, which states,
The team at SEGA has decided to delay the release date of Sonic Boom: Fire & Ice,which we announced for Nintendo 3DS earlier this year. In order to make sure the game has the time and polish needed, we’re moving it out into 2016. No exact window from us, just yet – it’ll be ready when it’s ready!
Anyone that knows what’s good for them has avoided Sonic games for a while, and rightly so. Sonic’s leap to 3D has been rough to say the least, and many argue it still doesn’t feel right. Sonic Adventure and its sequel were sub-par at best in the eyes of critics, and of the 20+ games featuring Sonic to be released since then, not one had sufficient polish, quality control, or even time invested to really deliver and reignite the passion of fans for the blue hedgehog. For the first time, this delay is giving fans hope.
Sonic Boom released originally as two separate games: Sonic Boom: Rise of Lyric for the Wii U and Sonic Boom: Shattered Crystal for the 3DS. Unfortunately, both titles were rushed for a holiday season release and neither turned out very good, not to mention Sega’s failure to send out review copies for either game. Regardless, Sonic Boom is also a children’s animated television series, and Sega decided the 3DS copy, which was reviewed slightly less harshly, was worth salvaging. Luckily, they seem to finally have learned from their mistakes and are holding out for a truly quality Sonic game.
We’ll find out sometime in 2016.