SEGA talks Sonic Mania design process and goals, old/new stages, no DLC plans, and more

The following comes from a Gamer interview with series producer Takashi Iizuka, as translated by NintendoEverything...

- for Sonic’s 25th anniversary last year, Iizuka received a task to deliver some sort of product
- the target was “dormant fans” who used to play the SEGA Genesis, but haven’t really played any games since
- Iizuka met Christian Whitehead, which lead to the creation of Sonic Mania
- there was talk of another port, but Iizuka thought fans would desire something new from the old games
- this is the first time Iizuka partnered with a team of devs spread across various countries
- Iizuka said this team had a greater passion to create
- this was in comparison to companies that set decisions on a pre-determined schedule (in meetings, etc)
- the team had so many features they still wanted to add after the beta version was complete
- since there were only a few spots with text that needed to be localized, they could bring the game to more places quicker
- the game has Japanese, English, French, Italian, German, and Spanish support
- the Studiopolis stage is included due to receiving the most requests from the Sonic Mania development team
- Iizuka actually considered reducing the amount of stages at one point in order to meet the development schedule
- Sonic Mania doesn’t really have much in the way of cut content like scrapped stages
- since Sonic Mania was only distributed digitally, the team was able to continue working very close leading up to launch
- this let them put in practically all ideas, and there are currently no plans for DLC
- Iizuka recommended Flying Battery Zone for inclusion becaues he likes the music
- he also likes when the player goes inside and outside the ship
- Iizuka likes Mirage Saloon because the stage structure will be different depending on the player character chosen
- Puyo Puyo gameplay was added because there was a Puyo Puyo game released in the west for the SEGA Genesis
- this game was originally called “Dr. Robotnik’s Mean Bean Machine”, and the team thought it would make a fun boss battle
- Iizuka didn’t have plans to feature Blue Sphere in the special stages
- the Blue Sphere special stages were brought over to Mania as a test, but ended up staying for the final game
- the team felt the need to continuously connect stages from various eras, which is doe with the Phantom Ruby story
- for Sonic Mania, it was decided that the technological limit would be set at SEGA CD,
- this is higher than the Genesis but lower than Saturn
- in creating a SEGA CD-grade special stage, they would intentionally make SEGA CD-grade polygons

from GoNintendo


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