Rumor: The next Sonic game may be open world and include 'ubisoft towers'

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Sega's recent Sonic the Hedgehog livestream showcased various projects in the works, like a remaster of Sonic Colors called Sonic Colors: Ultimate that will be coming to PC as an Epic Store exclusive (opens in new tab) on September 7. The stream ended with a 30-second teaser of Sonic running through a forest as various digital effects flew off his feet, leaving a glowing trail that formed a circular pattern seen from above. It's a new game from Sonic Team coming to PC in 2022, and that's all we know about it for sure.

If people who claim to have focus tested an early version of the game (via Resetera (opens in new tab)) are to be trusted, however, it will be open world with "ubisoft towers" and "set on a gloomy, grassy, uninhabited island dotted with ruins", featuring an "xp system with skill tree" that lets you unlock abilities like "spincycle", which seems to be what Sonic's doing at the end of the teaser. 

The leaks also claim that solving puzzles around the open world will reward you with orbs that unlock portals to "cyberspace", which would explain all those digital effects around Sonic's feet, where you play levels like those in the fast-moving Sonic Unleashed to earn Chaos Emeralds. Oh, and apparently "a ghost girl refills your ring count".

I'd be more skeptical about these rumors except that one of them, from July 2020, mentions the game was called Sonic Rangers. That name was found in the metadata of a leaked 4K version of the new teaser (opens in new tab), and then was just straight-up listed in an official press release sent out by Sega Europe. That press release highlighted everything from the livestream and called the forthcoming game "the next Sonic flagship" (well, "nächsten Sonic-Flaggschiff", but you can trust my German translating ability on this one).

Eurogamer (opens in new tab) was told by Sega that the press release was "an older version that was shared incorrectly".

Jody Macgregor
Weekend/AU Editor

Jody's first computer was a Commodore 64, so he remembers having to use a code wheel to play Pool of Radiance. A former music journalist who interviewed everyone from Giorgio Moroder to Trent Reznor, Jody also co-hosted Australia's first radio show about videogames, Zed Games (opens in new tab). He's written for Rock Paper Shotgun (opens in new tab), The Big Issue, GamesRadar (opens in new tab), Zam (opens in new tab), Glixel (opens in new tab), Five Out of Ten Magazine (opens in new tab), and (opens in new tab), whose cheques with the bunny logo made for fun conversations at the bank. Jody's first article for PC Gamer was about the audio of Alien Isolation, published in 2015, and since then he's written about why Silent Hill belongs on PC, why Recettear: An Item Shop's Tale is the best fantasy shopkeeper tycoon game, and how weird Lost Ark can get. Jody edited PC Gamer Indie from 2017 to 2018, and he eventually lived up to his promise to play every Warhammer videogame.