The Sonic timeline just got a little messier, with Sonic Team head Takashi Iizuka explaining when the latest game takes place. According to Iizuka, Sonic Superstars fits in the timeline just before Sonic Adventure, after the original platformers on Mega Drive.
This also puts it after Sonic Mania, apparently, as the 2D games appear to be trucking along chronologically. That would explain why Amy can switch between her classic and modern look, but it may have created some other inconsistencies. For starters, it moves away from the dual timeline theory that had spread in the fanbase, making it unclear where Sonic Generations fits into all of this.
Speaking with Eurogamer (and as spotted by Nintendo Life), Takashi Iizuka has a clear idea of when Sonic Superstars takes place, even if the series keeps bouncing around all over the place.
"The Classic series began with Sonic 1 in 1991, and Sonic Adventure marked the switch to the Modern series in 1998," says Iizuka. "So in terms of the Sonic timeline, Sonic Superstars occurs after Sonic Mania and before Sonic Adventure. Whenever we develop a new game, we always make sure the story fits with the lore."
That all adds up. In Superstars, Amy and Knuckles have joined the gang, so it has to be after the originals. But since the rest of the cast is nowhere to be seen, it's probably before Sonic Adventure and Sonic Adventure 2, which gave us the modern setup we've gotten used to.
However, when you look at previous comments on the Sonic timeline, it gets a little confusing. Classic Sonic as a character is the same person as Modern Sonic, just, well, from the past. Then, Mania takes place after Generations, but not before Classic Sonic had gone through Adventure, and become Modern Sonic. Keeping up?
So, that would mean that Sonic in Sonic Superstars is post-Generations, pre-Adventure. Yes, my head hurts as well. Very much so, in fact. But it does track, in a roundabout way. It just turns out that Sonic had a lot of encounters with Eggman before Adventure, more so than Sega would have intended back in the day. God, imagine being the person at Sonic Team having to keep up with all of this.
In any case, timeline drama aside, Sonic Superstars has been met with generally favourite reviews. It managed to bag a 75/100 on Metacritic, with a 9/10 user score. In our review, I gave it 3.5/5, loving the new direction for the gameplay, but disappointed that the main gang still controlled as they had in the 1990s.
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