News Article

Project Needlemouse to Focus Solely on Sonic?

Posted by Jamie Giggs

No super sidekicks this time

Sonic has taken a lot of criticism for his most recent 3D outing, Sonic Unleashed.The main problems being that Sega need to leave out all so-called "fake" characters and focus purely on the blue blur himself, as well as keeping it 2D and fast. Well it looks as if Sega has finally listened to the fans calling.

Over the course of five days Sega ran a character countdown for the mysterious new game. More and more characters were crossed out until eventually it was just Sonic left. Sega themselves said it's going to be a reboot which the fans will be happy with so this is a great start for most. The only problem being that Sega have not announced which platforms the game is being developed for, but we're keeping our fingers tightly crossed here.

Sega also revealed a piece of concept art showing one of the Badniks to feature in the game, which may look familiar for fans of Sonic the Hedgehog 2. Exciting stuff, eh? It's just a shame Sega has yet to tell us whether Wii owners will be able to play the darned thing, though with any luck we'll have some good news for you on that front soon.

[via gonintendo.com]

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User Comments (68)

Objection

#1

Objection said:

I wonder what would have happened if ALL the names had been crossed out. :P Yes, including Sonic's.

City_Of_Delusion

#3

City_Of_Delusion said:

@2: Basically, the new Sonic game is codenamed Project Needlemouse. That's pretty much all we know for certain, however Sega is indicating that it's back to the old school. I predict it will be Sonic Rush HD.

Kreegs07

#4

Kreegs07 said:

@ infernape

Sure can. Its a new 2D sonic game. Here is what wikipedia says

Project Needlemouse is a code name for a platform video game in development as part of the Sonic the Hedgehog series. It is targeted for release in 2010. The game was first announced September 9, 2009.[1]
The game will be a two-dimensional side-scrolling platformer reminiscent of the original Sonic games, with an emphasis on speed. It will be playable in high definition.[2] In an interview with Digitalgames.fr, Sega France spokesperson Franck Sebastien hinted that Project Needlemouse may be targeted for digital distribution.[3]

Slapshot

#5

Slapshot said:

Needlemouse...... or Hedgehog Im guessing as its literally a mouse with Needles.

Kid_A

#6

Kid_A said:

Hopefully by the time this comes out I'll have a PS3--but it'd still be a shame if Wii-only owners were left out on this. Looks like it has a ton of potential.

DarkLink

#8

DarkLink said:

I'll be remaining sceptical until I actually play the game, Sega have let me down too often in the past

nintendogamerftw

#9

nintendogamerftw said:

Luckily I have a PS3 in case it doesn't come to the Wii. However, I would much prefer it if I could play it on the Wii as I find the has the best controls for games of this type.

Gum

#10

Gum said:

i love how Sonic 'fans' complain that "SONIC ONLY" should be the way to go...but S3&K had 2 other playable characters...and that is widely regarded as the best Sonic game ever.

Tails and Knuckles will be missed =

zemulii

#12

zemulii said:

They've destroyed Sonic's name so throroughly this last decade (alright, I did like a few of the handheld games...) that it's going to take something pretty special for me to forgive them even a little bit.

Sonic 2 was my favourite game as a kid

sniff :(.

sonic_brawler95

#13

sonic_brawler95 said:

Its codenamed Project Needlemouse because Sonic"s original name was going to be Mr. Needlemouse. :D

I can't wait to here more about this game!

V8_Ninja

#15

V8_Ninja said:

As I said in a thread earlier today, I'm not buying into the hype machine. Sega may even screw up with this game, cementing the blue blur's fate forever in crap-tacular 3D platformers. Sonic is already dead and it's going to take more than one game to make me believe that he's back.

TKOWL

#16

TKOWL said:

I would've liked Tails by you to be a punching bag for you (a la Sonic 2), but I like the idea that there isn't any other antromorphic characters besides the real deal. Please come to Wii!

Radixxs

#18

Radixxs said:

If this is released on Wii, there is a good chance I will get it. I loved Sonic Rush, and have been looking for a good Sonic game ever since.

firecookie29

#19

firecookie29 said:

yes! no annoying people like tails and all of the other people. i wouldve been okay with knuckles and shadow though.

mastersworddude

#20

mastersworddude said:

Wait so no Eggman?! What is the whole game just Sonic on the trip to the store?
P.S. I hope it uses the Unleashed models.
"Sonic Unleashed.The main problems being that Sega need to leave out all so-called "fake" characters and focus purely on the blue blur himself, as well as keeping it 2D and fast."
Unleashed didn't have a lot of characters, the only ones were Sonic, Tails, Amy and Eggman, and then Chip. (I didn't mind Chip he seemed really well developed.) But really JUST Sonic? Even the genesis games didn't focus JUST on Sonic.

Starwolf_UK

#21

Starwolf_UK said:

Wow "Sonic's new friend mr.needlemouse" was so bad they had to reject him 3 times. But yeah knowing what Sonic Team are capable of these days I probably won't anything until release date and universal praise not seen since Super Mario Galaxy...

RaylaxStaff

#22

Raylax said:

BADNIKS <3
Finally, was getting a bit bored of the super-bland Eggrobo baddies. A little sad to see that it doesn't look like Tails or Knux will make the cut, but ehn.
EDIT: NO NOT EGGROBO, EGGROBO ROCKED. THE OTHER ONES. THE GENERIC HORRID LITTLE MACHINES. Those boring things which have plagued the series since Heroes.

"Sonic has taken a lot of criticism for his most recent 3D outing, Sonic Unleashed.The main problems being that Sega need to leave out all so-called "fake" characters and focus purely on the blue blur himself,"
This wasn't a main problem of Unleashed. Considering this games' character cast ripped out the vast majority of the supporting cast right down to Tails, Amy and Chip.

Regardless of how its reviewed and received when it comes out (and if it comes out on Wii), I'll still no doubt get a copy. I've enjoyed every other game regardless of popular opinion (especially Secret Rings and Unleashed), so I'll enjoy this too. Rock on Needlemouse

SeniorDingDong

#23

SeniorDingDong said:

Well, the reasons why recent Sonic games more or less sucked weren´t his sidekicks. Tails was a good addition in Sonic 2 and Blaze did a great performance in Sonic Rush for example.

I know, some Sonic moments seemed like a furry soap opera, but games like Sonic Unleashed, Sonic and the Black Knight and 06 wernt games at all and got badly design, avoiding year long critism and the fanbase.

MrPinguy

#24

MrPinguy said:

It's an Shellcracker. :D

The problem in sonic games never were the characters, were the gameplay, really Mario and Classic Mega Man have silly characters and "plotmess" but the gameplay wins. But of course since it's the actual Sonic Team we are talking about, not the good old Sonic Team, or another awesome team, Sonic only game gives them space to ignore stupid markting gimmics. (Dreaming, with still some faith) missing Tails, Knuckles or Amy (yes i like amy, sorry i grown with her classic design) is a good thing.

@Raylax
Don't compare the awesome Eggrobo with those plain eggpawn-like-fools :P

RaylaxStaff

#25

Raylax said:

Does anyone know what the character names all were under the 'Rejected' stamps? Old sidekicks or new fake names (seeing comment #21 identifying one as "Sonic's new friend Mr. Needlemouse" made me wonder if the others were just fake names)? I can't recognise any of the others...

EDIT: @ Above comment: OH WHOOPS. Ahaha, my bad. Eggrobo rocked, yes. Can't remember what those generic guys are called now though.

TwilightV

#26

TwilightV said:

Again, the list was only to prove Sonic would be the only PLAYABLE character. Although i'm pretty sure they said the ones from the list would not appear, so that leaves out:
Amy
Big
Froggy
Tikal
Shade
Chip
Vector
Charmy
Shadow
Sonic's New Friend Mr. Needlemouse (LOL)

DAaaMan64

#27

DAaaMan64 said:

As long as his name is DR. ROBOTNIK and EGGMAN thats a like 20% boost in percent chance of suck less.

MrPinguy

#28

MrPinguy said:

@TwilightV
Actually they said, in their final post, that Sonic will be the only character in the game, (i presume that Dr. Ivo "Eggman" Robotnik and his Badniks still enter of course.)
Seemed like an Sonic 1 treatment in the character department.

@DAaaMan64
His name were always Robotnik, even after SA, really, manuals, little references, like Robotnik Inc. himself in the DS rpg, or even his family.
even in japan in sonic x (yes that show) his real name was stated to be Robotnik (Eggman as his alias), so don't worry about that.
If you want to call him Robotnik do so, even the game doesn't tell it.
It's like Peach, nowadays it's a bit more of japanise name, but her name is and will always be Princess Toadstoll, Peach Toadstoll.

JakobG

#29

JakobG said:

Finally some new information!
Sounds great.
No plot-mistake: Check.
No character-mistake: Check.
No awkward-controls: Check.

Looks like Sega has learnt his lesson.

MrPinguy

#31

MrPinguy said:

@DAaaMan64 & @BooNelson
While i like "Robotnik" more, i think everyone that goes "Anti-Eggman" (not speaking about you of course) is overreacting and being picky, the kind of people that make sonic games worse that they really are (not that they are good nowadays anyway, but the 2d ones while not as good as the Mega Drive ones, deserve some praise). Eggman it's an good tribute to the Beatles song (just looks to his old jumpsuit, he's the "Walrus", he's the "Eggman" :P) I just want to hear "Robotnik" more, to please my inner child, but "Eggman" should stay, in respect the original people who worked on the 1º game in japan (now Sega also respect the american people who helped sell the 1º game all over the world! More "Ivo Robotnik"!)

MasterGraveheart

#36

MasterGraveheart said:

It better be Wii-exclusive Since it won't sell on the HD-jocks' FPS-machines. Wii was made for Sonic's return...

Think it will draw characters from the Archie Comics series? It's pretty much all Sonic's had lately.

XD375

#37

XD375 said:

Sonic Unleashed was horrible on the Wii, though. Let's hope that if Project Needlemouse is on the Wii, they don't release a COMPLETELY DIFFERENT FREAKING GAME under the same title as the 360/PS3 versions. >>

Sonic Unleashed got its bad rep because of the shoddy Wii version, sadly enough. :[

WiiGuy

#39

WiiGuy said:

I've got a PS3 and Wii side by side, so which ever is going to be the better version, I'll get it

MrPinguy

#41

MrPinguy said:

@XD375
The wii version didn't have gigantic useless hubs, and in day stages you could actually see where you're going. Why have more content that didn't work well? (It's obvious why got bad reputation for god's sake... Werehog...)
But yeah, pick your poison.

Klapaucius

#42

Klapaucius said:

"It's like having BOWSER, but more often than not calling him BIG FIRE DINOSAUR MAN instead!"
King Koopa :P

BulbasaurusRex

#44

BulbasaurusRex said:

I'd just like to confirm that Sonic is the only playable character, not the only character or good guy in the game. Robotnik is almost certain to be the villain, and Tails, Kunckes, and Amy are likely to appear in the game in my estimation.

Also, Sonic Unleashed was helped by having Sonic be the only playable character but was partly ruined by the Werehog. So far, they've been listening to their fans, but they need to avoid using an alternate gameplay system (the biggest problem with the 3D games after the Adventure games) before they will have truly repented.

@XD375 - I also heard the Wii version of Unleashed was better by not having the hubs with the annoying fetch quests. Speaking from experience, the day levels in the Wii version are amazing, and the night levels aren't as bad as they're made out to be. It's certainly not terrible.

Sintra4

#46

Sintra4 said:

I'm not sure how this is going to end up. If you ask me, it would be best if the game ended up on the Wii, since the quality of the game will be much hugher than Sonic Rush, and New Super Mario Bros. Wii (Super Mario Bros. 5) has proven that a 2D platformer can sell extraordinarily well on a home console over a long term.

RaylaxStaff

#47

Raylax said:

@Bulbasaurus+Rex: "I also heard the Wii version of Unleashed was better by not having the hubs with the annoying fetch quests. Speaking from experience, the day levels in the Wii version are amazing, and the night levels aren't as bad as they're made out to be. It's certainly not terrible."

You're my new favourite person ever. I agree, Unleashed rocked. Day stages were epic, night stages /worked/ at least. They were playable. A bit dull, yes, but playable.

Frog

#48

Frog said:

It seems Sonic Team are taking a few steps in the right direction. I imagine Tails, Knuckles and Amy will end up in the game, as well, which is alright with me. I don't mind the characters from Sonic's early days.

Mike1

#49

Mike1 said:

I hope it is like the old Sonic games on the Genesis. Maybe it will be developed for WiiWare? Sonic and the Secret Rings was decent, but Unleashed and Black Knight were not that great at all. Unleashed was good during the daytime stages but the Werehog stages were terrible and actually very very boring.

Kidpit

#50

Kidpit said:

I don't know if this is a good idea. I like to at least have the option of playing as different characters, if only to boost the replay-ability factor like in Sonic 3 and Knuckles.

Also I wouldn't be to quick to praise this "listening to the fans" thing. Sony Pictures did the same thing and added Venom to Spiderman 3 and well....We got dancing emo Parker.

JimLad

#51

JimLad said:

It's not rocket science Sega, do a Megaman and just use the old engine with new levels and music and release it as a digital download.
If they manage to screw this up, I will be in awe.

JakobG

#52

JakobG said:

@31: Plus, Sonic can't make a pun of Eggman to tease him.
But Ro-butt-nik, that's so much better.

madgear

#53

madgear said:

I'd be pretty much certain that this game will come out on the Wii. What is throwing everyone off is the advert says that it is "coming soon in HD" but the Wii is the platform where Sonic games really sell.

Sonic has made way more appearances on the Wii than on any of the other consoles and it's the machine all Sonic fans have adopted to play all his games. Along with New Super Mario Bros Wii, people who want a dose of new retro action will have also bought a Wii for that reason. To not release it on Wii would be like making Avatar and only releasing it in Holland.

Gum

#54

Gum said:

fun fact, the name Ivo Robotnik was used to take advantage of the animosity felt towards the USSR back in the early 90s.

but cha, Unleashed Wii was much better than PS360. Although it missed to levels, it also lacked the useless hubs, the poor shooter everytime you would go inbetween countries, and the pointless camera mission....all thins the PS360 would be better without.

MrPinguy

#56

MrPinguy said:

@Gum
That's seems too much internet rumor for me.
The man who named the Doctor himself Ivo Robotnik said that he chosed Ivo, because the "European" way to say the name (Evou) make it sound like "Evil" (and Ivo backwards it's Ovi, an distortion of Ovum and that means "Egg"), and Robotnik because it's the word that was used as the base for creating the word "Robot" and actually it just mean "Worker".

SilverBaretta

#57

SilverBaretta said:

Unfortunately, I don't see this coming to Wii (no matter how much I, or anyone wants it). The big part that throws me off is that it's going to be playable in HD. Then again, we might see a port sometime in the future (in the style of Modern Warfare Reflex).

Mach-X

#58

Mach-X said:

Why is it that the game hasn't produced a SINGLE screenshot, and there are people ALREADY bagging on it? It's kind of annoying when you have people who just want to not like something automatically, just so they can say later on 'see I told you before it was gonna suck'. As if they are some great seer or something. You act like there hasn't been a single good sonic game since the Genesis. If you really believe that, why are you paying attention? You're obviously no longer a fan, anyhow. 1994 was a long time ago, it should have become obvious to you that you are a geezer and aren't EVER going to like anything new.
All of that being said, there HAVE been some stumbles and mistakes along the way. Sonic Adventure was one fatastic play from start to finish. But the voice acting was aweful, sonic shouldn't be talking. SA2, not so good, those knuckles stages are AWEFUL and are what have kept me from going back and playing it. But there have ALSO been moments of greatness. Have any of you haters played the Sonic Advance games? Sonic Rush DS? 5 very solid outings, little to no voice acting, engaging characters such as Blaze who made Sonic Rush fun twice. And why so much hatred for Sonic Secret Rings? That game is BEAUTIFUL, very fast and fun once you got used to the controls. Haven't tried Unleashed yet, I bet it's nowhere near as bad as people say. In fact, I would have to say of the main sonic games (not sonic R or those team games) the only really terrible outings were Sonic 360 and Black Knight. (I don't like SA2, but fans seem to). Not really any reason to automatically condemn this new outing, other than you enjoy being one of the 'early haters'.

Wamtu

#59

Wamtu said:

The supporting cast is going phhpt?! That was my favourite part of the series! This seems like a big step in the wrong direction. Also, I think Unleashed showed they can't make a decent Sonic game no matter how many of the Ds it's in. I mean come on, did ANYone actually like the 2D parts of the day levels? They were the worst part of the game! Another thing: In my opinion the best games in the Sonic series were Sonic Adventures 1 & 2 and Sonic Heroes. The 2D ones were really good too, but those were the ones I had the most fun with. Everything after Sonic Heroes (on consoles, at least) was really, REALLY bad.

Discipledoctor

#60

Discipledoctor said:

@ Objection_Blaster
I wonder what would have happened if ALL the names had been crossed out. Yes, including Sonic's.

Big the Cat: The Video Game

SmaMan

#63

SmaMan said:

I bet they're waiting on announcing the consoles it'll be on right now... because they're going to release this game on the GENESIS! They wanted this to be a 'reboot' right?

Yes I agree there have been way too many new characters in the Sonic series as of late, but Tails and Knuckles were great icons from his golden age. They should have let them stay in!

XD375

#64

XD375 said:

@TwilightV "@XD375: I read reviewers actually preferred the Wii version of Unleashed..."

Reviewers liked it better, but go on any message board and a large majority of fans largely prefer the 360/PS3 version. Having played both, the 360/PS3 version is much better.

postmanX3

#65

postmanX3 said:

If this is actually a brand new 2D Sonic game, I will be indescribably happy.

After Sonic Adventure (and arguably Sonic Adventure 2), the franchise became insufferable. Sonic Adventure was amazing, and I'm still confused as to why the developers felt the need to change it so much in future iterations.

SmaMan

#67

SmaMan said:

@postmanX3
I thought Sonic Adventure 2 was awesome. Great voice actors, multiple storylines, not to mention the Chao Garden was like a whole other game! And the multi-player modes that the GCN version added were great as well. Sonic Heroes and everything after that tried to be too much like that game, which is how it failed.

And it got annoying to hear Knuckles say sh*t every third punch. (Yes I know he wasn't really saying it, but it sounds a whole lot like he is.)

Kelvin

#68

Kelvin said:

With Mario returning to 2D, and with huge success, I'm not surprised to see Sonic following. I just hope it's as good as New Super Mario Bros Wii, or, indeed, the older Sonic 2D titles.

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