News Article

Sonic the Hedgehog 4: Episode 1 Coming to Wii

Posted by Corbie Dillard

A return to 2D side-scrolling action of old - now with trailer!

Sega has just announced that Project Needlemouse is in fact a return to the 2D Sonic side-scrolling action of the 16-bit era. The game will be called Sonic the Hedgehog 4: Episode 1 and will be released on XBLA, PSN, and WiiWare this Summer.

Below is a snippet of the interview conducted by Gamespot with Sega associate brand manager Ken Balough.

GS: Will there be any differences between the different versions? That is, will the Wii have motion control, or will the PS3 and 360 run at 1080p?

KB: For all intents and purposes, the games are designed to be identical. There are a few differences per what each console can output visually: Wii will be at 480p, while the XBLA and PSN versions will run at 1080p. However, for certain areas of the game, the Wii will be able to use motion control, and the PS3 will be able to use the Sixaxis.

Click here for the full interview. Want to see it moving? Of course you do. Check out the first trailer below!

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We'll have more information on Sonic the Hedgehog 4: Episode 1 as it becomes available, as well as a full review of the game when it hits the WiiWare service.

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Game Screenshots

User Comments (136)



Chunky_Droid said:

DO WANT! Totally glad the rumours it wasn't coming to Wii have been proven false!

Hopefully it'll contain just as good gameplay and music we enjoyed back on the Genesis (even if I was a SNES fanboy at the time!)



XD375 said:

I stayed up until 3:00 AM for this, and it was more than worth it.

I'm crying tears of joy. I'll get it on XBLA, though.



Stuffgamer1 said:

And I was in the NLife Chat when we saw the reveal. In fact, I informed people it was coming. Go me!

Oh yeah, and I'm glad those without HD consoles (such as our very own Tails) will be able to play this game after all. That said, I'ma go with PS3.



y2josh said:

And I was there when Stuff informed us of the news! Yay for news! Yay for Sonic!



bro2dragons said:

i'll keep eyes open for the review, but at the moment, i'm thinking this one's gonna probably end up as a "pass" for me. i have sonic gems collection and sonic mega collection for GC, and i'm not even a very big sonic fan. so unless this is spectacular, i think my bases of covered with hedgehog platforming.



Brainhost said:

Episodes? Is that... really necessary?
Ah well, it's a return to form, so that's great!



Stuffgamer1 said:

The rumors amounting to the Wii not getting the game were based on the fact that two different members of the development team mentioned XBLA and PSN in interviews somewhat pertaining to this project (it was all fairly vague). Their mentions were relative only to what THEY had been playing lately, which turned out to simply mean that it was a "downloadable" hint more than a "not on Wii" hint. And SEGA devs don't play WiiWare, I guess.

Don't worry about the episodic format. The article and all previously available leaked info says that it'll be a full-sized game with more direct sequels, kind of like how Sonic & Knuckles was the DIRECT story sequel to Sonic 3.



fatlittlenick said:

Same here brethren.
I just checked the official STH4 website, and there's a collum saying "coming for XLA, PSN, Wii and ???" Possible that its for DSi ware?
I am honestly going to buy a copy for both Wii and PS3.
I am so hyped for this game, I hope it delivers...



mastersworddude said:

Homing attack? WHY? This is supposed to be for the old fans, so why add all this new garbage.

If I wanted all that, heck I could just go play Sonic Rush.

Darn it."
LOL, People just love to complain don't they? OMG SEGA did something NEW! THIS GAME IS GONNA SUCK!!" This is the worst fanbase ever.



James said:

Don't be a chip-pisser, Adam!

@fatlittlenick - DSiWare would certainly be interesting, but my betting is on it being an iPod Touch or PlaySega title.



mastersworddude said:

I doubt its DSiware or IPod, most likely PlaySega, since it will kinda be like releasing it on their own system just like in the old days.



Vinsanity said:

So far so good! Everything they've said about Sonic 4 (GOD it feels so good to finally call it that!) sounds great. And anyone whose played Sonic Unleashed knows that they still know how to rock 2D gameplay (the relatively few times they got around to it in that game). I absolutely can't wait for this! This is going to be great! Don't screw it up Sonic Team! Or Dimps - I wouldn't mind if after all the Sonic Advances, Sonic Rush's, and PS2/Wii version of Unleashed, SEGA finally promoted you.



mastersworddude said:

@Vinsainity: I wouldn't be surprised if Dimps developed it, considering the games they developed are the most positively received Sonic games lately, then again I wouldn't be surprised if Sonic Team will develop it either, since its a big thing for them.



Machu said:

Great idea Sega well done, shame you're about ten years too late though, durgh.

Now Sega, please start making consoles again besides your tacky Wii-rip and get this dumb hedgehog away from Nintendo. It's not right! D:



JRSoul said:

Very nice news, I didn't think this would come to WiiWare. I'm going to keep my expectations low for now though.



mastersworddude said:

@Machu: SEGA would not make another console, Sega pulling out of the console war after the Dreamcast was their best decision, one which probably saved the company. If they tried to fully enter the console war at this point, it would be nothing but failure; The other systems are too strong/well-known, and the only way for Sega to make a system known would be to come up with a gimmick for it, in which everything's already been done at this point. There's no way in hell a new Sega console could survive in this day and age.



Tails said:

Congrats sega on making me have to save up more money now x.x; But yay for sonic back in old style again!



Machu said:

I disagree mastersworddude, they should have stayed in the hardware business and not piggy backed like this. Sonic lost his identity and respect for the company dwindles. I don't see how that is good.

If it weren't for Mario's recent success' in 2D, I imagine this woulda just been another 3D gimpfest. Go Sega, wooh!



RebeccaGunn said:

I'm so happy I can report on this title again after it almost looked like it was going to be on HD consoles only!

Maybe I'm a fool but I have high hopes as the devs seem to have their hearts in the right place this time. No gimmicks, no new friends to distract from the main game (though I do morn lack of Tails).



Link79 said:

Ok Sega this is your last chance to redeem yourselves. Everyone knows Sonic hasn't been great since Sonic and knuckles. 2-D is where he belongs so do it right and no more half assed attempts. Make us believe in the blue blur once again.



MrPinguy said:

An Sega representant said that Sonic 4: Episode 1 is the 1º part of an complete adventure like Sonic 3 was the 1º Episode and Sonic & Knuckles the 2º in the Sonic 3 chapter.
So expect 6-7 zones for episode.



JimLad said:

Hah, I totally called this like 3 weeks ago.
Well actually I said they should use the Mega Drive engine, but I'm glad they're not.
Also glad the light bulb has finally come on for Sonic Team.
This is most likely going to be awesome as they have proven in recent years they can still make amazing 2D games.
And when they see it out-scoring every game they've made in the last 5 years, maybe they'll re-think their development strategy.
(Golden Axe 4?) (Streets of Rage 4?)...



Stevie said:

I will put my faith in you one last time Sega, please do not let me down. I do have a good feeling about this one though, the signs are there that they have listened to fans this time and have kept it 2D as well as ditching unnessecary characters. I shall be keeping a close eye on this!!



moomoo said:

If this game isn't fantastic, I will never buy another Sonic game again.



Mingo73 said:

I am SOOOOOO excited for this! I've never woken up to such good news before! Now to decide on WiiWare, or XBLA…



Raylax said:

That is all I have to say on the matter.
No, wait. One last thing to say to all those who spoke with such authority on the sheer unbendable fact that it would definitely not be coming out on a Nintendo platform:



James said:

@JimLad - Don't forget AfterBurner Climax is out on XBLA and PSN this year too and there's the rumoured Sonic Adventure XBLA port too. SEGA is going to have an awesome year!



JakobG said:

The fact that they treat it as the successor of StH 3 is enough to know this will be awesome!
Back to the time where only Sonic, Tails and Knuckles ruled Mobius!



Supermegaman said:

hmmmm new sonic the hedgehog wii might have been a better name....
This may just be my first sonic game i enjoy and can beat!



Incognito_D said:

the only part of this that I don;t like is the "episode 1" - I don't want to have to pay loads to buy loads of parts seperately when they should just make it the one big game on disc.



blackknight77 said:

Thank you Sega for bringing this to Wii and making it a downloadable title. I will most certainly be checking out episode 1 this summer.



MasterGraveheart said:

Thank you, Sega, for doing the right thing with this. This news is a thriller for me, who bought a Genesis essentially only for the Sonic games (though I've since changed my viewpoint on that system and bought other games). I am insanely looking forward to this game.



naut said:

I would have rather this been a retail game, but I'm really happy about Sonic going back to his roots.



blackknight77 said:

The way I look at it is I can splurge for Episode 1 and if Sega really messes it up then I only spent at max 1,000 points. Seems like a pretty low risk to check out a new Sonic game.



Raylax said:

@Incognito D: It's episodical in the same way Sonic 3 and Sonic 3 & Knuckles were episodical - each 'episode' is a full game with a full set of zones.



motang said:

Episode 1?? Damn this DLC crap! Oh well, glad to hear it's return to the roots!



Mike1 said:

Great news, but Episode 1? Just give us the full game all at once.



Kevin said:

No way! 2D Sonic is making a comeback? Awesome! Seriously now, just give us the game and don't split into stupid episode amounts. I don't want this to be The After Years all over again.



Noire said:

I"m trying to think of something to say, I really am, but all I can come up with is 'YAY!'

Yeah, it's lame, but still...YAY!



SwerdMurd said:

....and Chatham returns to the void (good to see you alive/active bud)

I hope this game is good, I really do...the multi-plat to Wii has me nervous though, as it seems like the other 2 versions will be handicapped as a result...unless it's truly 16-bit styled (in which case I can see some FF4-TAY-itis....episodic prices for retro production values can draw ire)



King_Elemento said:

If it were a true return to classic, he wouldn't have green eyes.
There's a twist, I'm sure of it.



So it will came to wiiware. I was sure that we will get ditched..seems that I was wrong..and very HAPPY for it!

I am not wild about the episodic idea but eh I will survive..

First Super Mario 5 and now Sonic 4...that's a dream come true.



brandonbwii said:

I wonder if the WiiWare version will lack any content or if they all really will be identical a la Mega Man 9.



Knux said:

AWESOME!! EPIC!! Finally, I can have a true Sonic game that will not be bogged down by needless characters or medicore gameplay! This is pure Sonic!! I wished Tails or Knuckles was in this game, but gameplay is all that matters to me. I wonder what the mysterious 4th platform Sonic 4:Episode 1 will be on, perhaps it will be downloadable for the PSP? I'll more than likely get the WiiWare version due to the superior control scheme with the Classic Controller, even though I also have a PS3 and Xbox 360.



Bass_X0 said:

Great news, but Episode 1? Just give us the full game all at once.

So you're willing to spend 4000 points or whatever the full total is on a single download?



Reala said:

For a decent 2D Sonic game, I'd be willing to pay wiiware Final Fantasy ammounts of points, can't wait



MarkyVigoroth said:

"the Wii will be able to use motion control, and the PS3 will be able to use the Sixaxis."
Commence people complaining!



thaantman said:

THIS JUST MADE MY DAY!!! Wonder why this didn't call it sonic 5 because technically sonic 4 was sonic & knuckles



pixelman said:

"For a decent 2D Sonic game, I'd be willing to pay wiiware Final Fantasy ammounts of points, can't wait"

Don't give Sega ideas, plz.



Ristar42 said:

I am a really big fan of the first two games, such fond memories - this could be truly great - lets hope they don't mess it up... c'mon SEGA, you can do it!



Bass_X0 said:

Wonder why this didn't call it sonic 5 because technically sonic 4 was sonic & knuckles

Because there is no game called "Sonic the Hedgehog 4" regardless of Sonic & Knuckles being the fourth main game. Its good that they didn't miss out numbers due to technicalities like S&K.



Link79 said:

Actually Sonic and knuckles was more like the other half of Sonic 3. They just divided it up into two separate cartridges so they could do the lock on feature. Put them together and you get Sonic 3 full version. There never was an actual Sonic 4.



The_Fox said:

I going call this one as being crap. I want it to be good, but Sega has hurt me too much in recent years.



SmaMan said:

Maybe the ??? console is the Sega Genesis! A special retro release for people who still collect them. (like me!!)



Sylverstone said:

Best news to wake up to! Darn power outage last night made me miss it!

Looks like Sonic is stepping up and hopefully, the hype will be worth it in July! (RUMOR)




BulbasaurusRex said:

YES! It's on WiiWare, after all!

I've been calling for Sega to make a 2D Sonic game on WiiWare for over a year, and now they finally deliver!



Rhansley64 said:

Nice now all we we need is a Phantasy Star on Wii and Shining Force Feather release outside of Japan to make the perfect package deal.



sonic_brawler95 said:

I can't wait! I think I'll buy this on WiiWare and PSN! Extreeme awesomesauce!



V8_Ninja said:

Over-hyped games are over-hyped. This is an over-hyped game. Anyone see where this is going?



kevohki said:

Oh great, episodic downloads. Even when Sega gives fans what they want they manage to fail in some way.



AVahne said:

nice news and all, but i have a feeling that SEGA won't make the WiiWare look very good at all.
wondering why this wasn't made for the discs



Yosher said:

No thanks. I love Sonic. I love 2D Sonic. But breaking Sonic games into multiple episodes? Just, no thanks. I'll buy it if it ever gets released as a complete package.



DarkLink said:

[sarcasm]Wow! 3 whole seconds of gameplay footage, how very exciting![/sarcasm]

Misanthropy FTW!



Donatello said:

Nice news...I will say I'm interested, But back in the day when i owned a Snes and Genesis....Sonic just didn't quite do it for me(Rocket Knight Adventures blew it away imo)

Yet I did finish the first 2 Sonics games back in the day,..But the platforming was totaly mediocre, and the sense of speed while great is just something 'pretty' to watch since you're not in control. I think that's my way of looking at it now, Yet i have to admit, playing Sonic for the first time when it was released was some pretty awesome stuff ...But Mario and Mega Man he is not...Sonic is overrated, and i just find the franchise boring for the most part and broken(3D Games mainly)



MarkyVigoroth said:

From what I read (and I am just re-confirming what Mr. Pinguy said), the "episodes" are like "Sonic 3" and "Sonic & Knuckles" being different "episodes".



Chrono_Cross said:

From the game play shown it looks pretty slow paced from the original Sonic the Hedgehog games. I hope I'm wrong but who knows. I'll have to wait to see more footage released in the upcoming months.



SmaMan said:

Aww, I guess I missed that in the hundreds of comments here. Well, I can dream can't I?
I'm more concerned with the iPhone port than the WiiWare port. At least you can use real buttons on WiiWare!



MrPinguy said:

For me and for some people out there Classic Sonic gameplay beats Mario anyday.
What you said is more of your opinion (like my perspective) than an general truth.

Sonic have quills not hair...



Stuffgamer1 said:

Hey, Corbie, I think you should've put some more details about the "Episode 1" bit in the news article, as it seems a lot of people aren't bothering to click the link or read previous comments.

@DarkLink: Well, if done correctly, 3 seconds of gameplay can actually give a pretty good idea of the direction in which a game is headed. What we see is distinctly Genesis-styled. Due to the stream of random other stuff Sonic's been doing for over 10 years, that's enough to get people excited.



Shin_Kazama said:

Looks great, hope sega won't ruin it with a crappy gimmick/annoying supporting character/super sonic fighting new monster of utter destruction



BulbasaurusRex said:

@MrPinguy I'm also one of those people.

As long as we're getting a good amount of total content (like the amount in Sonic 3 & Knuckles or more) for a total of $50 or less, which I'm pretty sure we will, I don't see the problem with multiple episodes. It just means we can't play the full game right away, which might actually be a good thing if it increases our anticipation for the rest of the game.



astarisborn94 said:

This is indeed great news. Glad to see it coming to WiiWare. I'll defindently be supporting this game.



Kurona said:

I kinda wish they showed a longer gameplay video though, as it's way too short for me to get a good impression of it. Anyhow, I'm definitely interested.



zemulii said:

The game I thought I'd never see... But now I'm kind of worried... if they mess this one up, then they mess up a quality series! I already think they could have done quite a bit more visually... I mean, sure I thought the same when I first saw NSMBW - and changed my mind when I actually got to play it (some of the levels were beautiful). But I don't really have the same faith for Sega anymore. Just because a game is 2D doesn't mean it can't look stunning. I'm not exactly holding my breath... but if it gets good reviews it'll be a must buy .

Actually, now that I think about it, it's the MUSIC that will make or break it for me.



SilverBaretta said:

I like how a lot of people are like, "I hope they don't mess this up." Can't we just remain positive? Anyway, let's hope for even more new retro sequels in the near future! Hooray for Sonic returning to his roots and SEGA for listening!




The "HD graphics" look comletely out of place. They should have kept it 16-bit. I am still extremely skeptical. This is probably Sonic Team first step forwards, but whether it will stumble and fall with it, Im not sure. SEGA is grasping for life constantly, and as much as I dont want SEGA the image to leave, I want the current SEGA to strangle. Im still waiting for the amazing experience that they should be presenting.



@ GabeGreen: Ace Attorney
I agree, the 16-Bit graphics would've been nice to see.

I'm not really looking forward to this game. I'm gonna miss Vector, Amy, Cream, Charmy, Knuckles, all of 'em. That's one of my favorite things about the series, all of the colorful characters.



Zinjak said:

unbelievably happy right now. I like that its a mix of the old and the new....the original sonic games are my favorite old school games. I personally am glad hes not fat old school sonic though, I have preferred the new looks ever since they came out, besides they have to have something recognizable for the new generation of fans, but the gameplay looks very traditional.



BL_Donth said:

The motion controls better be optional. I want to experience this Sonic game old school style.



Slapshot said:

Flipping Sweet! Cant wait for this. Sonic 4 Trophies to add to my collection on my PS3, this just made my very long 16hr work day great.



Gameday said:

cant wait for some new classic music and levels... makes me want to go grab a chili dog lol



JimLad said:

Anyone else miss the circular foot motion from the old days?
I don't like the way he runs now.



Shin_Kazama said:

@ SilverBlacktail: well Yuji Naka isn't involved in Sonic games anymore, and he was kind of the soul of Sonic team. Sonic games haven't been the same since his departure.



Twilight_Crow said:

I'm glad is comimg, but I'll wait for the review; after playing the disappointing Sonic Rush, I have my doubts.



suburban_sensei said:

I am stuck on which version to buy. I love my Wii, but I am more inclined to buy the PS3 version when it comes out, since its running at a higher resolution.



baggy said:

I hope that this will be good and not a failure but from the few seonds of what we saw it looks pretty kewl



StarDust4Ever said:

Yes! Awesome P'wnness!!!
@133. Shin Kazama: I guess that would be like playing a Mario game that wasn't designed by Shigeru Myamoto. The only one I can think of is Super AMairo Land Game Boy.

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