I'm sat in front of Takashi Iisuka, the man behind the wonderful Sonic Adventure (read Jon's preview of the XBLA/PSN updated version here), level designer for Sonic Unleashed and lead producer on Sonic Colours. He's a man steeped in world of modern Sonic, with the blue hedgehog bravely taking on new platforming heroes who've long since embraced three dimensions and blasted into space.
It's not uncommon for developers to throw everything including the kitchen sink at a game to see what sticks, particularly when revitalising classic franchises. But whilst Mario seems to have gone from strength to strength, Sonic's route has been a little more haphazard. These days variety seems to be the spice of life but, as Sonic Unleashed displayed, sometimes changing things or adding in new elements just for the sake of it really isn't the answer. When gunning for the top, having your central protagonist turn into a werehog, whatever the hell that's supposed to be, is really not the answer.
With that in mind, there's really only one burning question I want to ask Iisuka-san before we go on, the answer to which will undeniably outline what he hopes to strive for with Sonic Colours: just what exactly are the core principles, in his opinion, that make an excellent Sonic game. The answer? Multi-route platforming and speed... lots of it.
Click here to see how Sonic Colours is coming along...