gamescom 2017: SEGA line-up

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We were able to spend some time at SEGA’s Gamescom booth and play two sequels to two very iconic game series and we’re willing to share the information – isn’t that nice?

So everyone is still talking about Mania, but SEGA’s die hard blue hedgehog is already preparing the run for his next adventure. Sonic Forces will once again be developed by Team Sonic, completely unlike the current fan favorite Sonic Mania, developed by PagodaWest Games and Headcannon.
While we haven’t had the pleasure to play the latest Sonic game yet, the new platformer seems much more like a successor to Sonic Generations.

At first the classic 2D gameplay will be waiting for the players in the new title. You’ll be scooting through venturesome levels to collect your precious rings, all while diminishing enemies, jumping on them and fight against the more or less evil Doctor Eggman in multi-tiered boss fights.  It not only feels good, but also looks the part as well.

Besides this, there is a human avatar which is controlled in 3rd person view. Here you have to collect the rings as well, defeat enemies all the same but use your boosts efficiently to get through. We travelled through a – how could it be any different – robot-factory, used a grappling hook for covering the distance to reach far-off platforms, to (finally) kill enemies that possess special abilities.
That’s fun and a refreshing change to the usual 2D gameplay come to mind.

Lastly both characters were up and about together, with the strength of the human and the agility of the hedgehog, yet again traversing levels in 3rd person view. Sonic himself has some special abilities for you to use as well. Quite fast-paced, but it also seemed a bit chaotic at first. So we have to test this mode more thoroughly in the final version of the game, to give you all a more detailed impression of it.

All in all Sonic Forces feels like an interesting experiment of Team Sonic. As in Generations the classic 2D style is indeed promising. The 3D counterpart on the other hand seems fun and could even measure up to the quality of the Ratchet & Clank reboot. Regarding the third mode, yet again more playtime is needed for a more detailed evaluation of its playability and integration.
Hopefully the feedback that was given at the gamescom will be used to further improving the games aspects. SEGA is cutting it close in that regard though, since the release date of Sonic Forces is already coming up. On November 7th you’ll be able to play it yourself on Nintendo Switch, Xbox One and PlayStation 4.

Game Title: Sonic Forces

Genre: Jump'n'Run

Release Date: 07.11.2017




After a long draught regarding the Yakuza games, the fans of the series can only rejoice. The prequel Yakuza 0 hit the shelves in January of our western civilization, and the release of Yakuza Kiwami – a remake of the very first game – happened just last month.
Now Yakuza 6 will hopefully arrive on schedule on March 20th, 2018. This marks not only the very first game of the Ryû Ga Gotoku Franchise that was developed only for the PlayStation 4, but also the last chapter of Kazuma Kiryu. Or so they say, but we know that this may differ in the long run, aye Nathan Drake and Solid Snake?

The power of the PS4 does indeed shine through the new Dragon engine: In the Free Roam demo we’re able to look at Tokyo’s fictional entertainment district Kamurocho. Never have the neon signs been more glaring, the character models more detailed, the animations more smooth and walking through puddles more splashy and sparkling than here. Naturally this insight into the new city hub is predestined for going into the well-known Club SEGA arcade, just to test out some of the new minigames. And we’re even permitted to try out two full-fledged SEGA-games as well; Virtua Fighter 5: Final Showdown and PuyoPuyo. The fighting game series Virtua Fighter thus gets it’s first debut on the PlayStation 4, for this is actually the latest title in the series, which was released on the past console generation in 2012.

As many might know, not only exploring the urban jungle of Kamurocho and playing at the arcade are part of the game, but the elaborate battle system as well. On contrary to the predecessor there seem to be no loading times involved; exploration of the city fluidly transitions into the next fight against street punks and drunkards, in seconds flat. With Kiwami and Zero in mind, there seemed to be much change regarding the battle system itself, our different fighting styles are gone. Instead we’re able to use our environment to its full potential, for the first time! We guess somebody played Sleeping Dogs here and liked it.

Kiryu throws scoundrels overboard on a yacht, crosses obstacles like balustrades and crashes the heads of his adversaries into the next vending machine. Just like his 20-year-old self should’ve been able to do so from the start. What’s more, there’s now a so called “Ultimate Heat Mode”. Utilizing this, Kiryu will basically pose a near invincible threat, swinging around motorcycles and maltreats them with even more brutal special animations than before.
If the new battle system will actually prove itself, will be seen in our thorough review in March 2018, stay tuned.

Yakuza 6 makes our wary protagonist Kazuma Kiryu travel to Hiroshima, carrying an infant in his arms searching for ….something. But what exactly? We can only make a guess, since the game itself has not provided enough information in this matter. And since we have not yet finished Yakuza 5, this came as a relief.
As usual the quality of the cutscenes, paired with the Japanese voice over and the slightly cheeky English translation is once more an entertaining accomplishment for the series. And according to our information all dialogues will be fully voiced this time around.  Worthy of note is, even in our short playtime with the game it, it doesn’t come short in exciting and breathtaking moments that let our hair stand on edge. Especially so as Kiryu protects the toddler literally until his last breath in his usual idealistic fashion.
We are extremely excited as to where the story and gameplay of the sixth installment will lead us thematically.

Just to raise awareness, the game will be released in an “After Hours Premium Edition” as well.  True to Ryû Ga Gotoku, including not only a hardcover artbook of the game, but also Tojo-clan emblem stylized coasters, two usable ice stones (one with the heat symbol and the other shows the Kanji “ 極 “aka extreme) to liven up the absolutely stunning “like a dragon” whisky tumblers! That is all packed up in a sleek box for €89.99, £79.99 or $89.99.

Until then, in case you want to fire yourself up more you are always able to play the games yourselves or watch our very own Let’s Play of Yakuza 0 (finished) and Yakuza Kiwami (on-going) to get your feet wet regarding the series.

Game Title: Yakuza 6

Genre: Action-Adventure

Release Date: 20.03.2018