Transcript of the 2017 Sonic the Hedgehog panel at South by Southwest

Voice actor spotlight

AARON: OK, next, it’s time for our voice actor spotlight. Mike and Roger, thanks for waiting so patiently and staying at the table the entire time.

ROGER: Of course!

MIKE: I aim to please.

AARON: So… rumor has it you guys have already recorded a good chunk of the lines for Sonic 2017. Is that right?

[Next two lines are simultaneous]

MIKE: A baseless accusation.

ROGER: It’s totally true.

AARON: A lot of people often ask us, and there are probably some in the audience with similar interest, about what it’s like doing voice acting in video games. How did you both get started?

ROGER: [Answer]

MIKE: [Answer]

AARON: When did you think: “I want to do voice acting”?

MIKE: [Answer]

ROGER: [Answer]

AARON: Who is your favorite audience member in the room right now?

ROGER: [Answer — pick someone at random]

MIKE: [Answer — pick someone at random]

AARON: Was there ever a moment in your career when you thought: “This is rough. This is really challenging”, and you had to push yourself to keep going forward?

MIKE: [Answer]


AARON: What’s one of your favorite things about the work you’ve done for Sonic 2017?

ROGER: [ANSWER — Pre-approved]

MIKE: [ANSWER — Pre-approved]

AARON: Roger, I hear you had to speak a little… quickly, when recording. What was that about?

ROGER: [ANSWER — Pre-approved with PD.]


AARON: OK, last question guys. Any advice for people who want to get into Voice Acting or do it professionally?



AARON: Fantastic. Thanks so much for that insight guys! Alright, well, I think we’ve had a lot of great reveals today already, from Mania to 2017, so it’s about time to move on to the Question and answer, right lizuka-san?

IIZUKA-SAN: Almost. There is… one more thing.

AARON: One more thing?

“One more thing…”

IIZUKA-SAN: That’s right. [To Audience] How would you like to be the first people in the world to see a sneak peek at early gameplay of Sonic 2017 (FORCES)?


AARON: Eh, that was OK, I guess. Let’s try it again. Audience, would you like to see the world exclusive first look at Sonic 2017 gameplay?


IIZUKA-SAN: Sonic 2017 is an evolution of both Sonic Colors and Sonic Generations, as well as new concepts that we haven’t revealed yet. There are three unique gameplay styles in the game, and today, we’re going to show you the first look at Modern Sonic’s gameplay style. Please note that since this footage is early, there may be some differences between this footage and the final game.

Hedgehog Engine 2

AARON: lizuka-san, to confirm, is this game running on the same engine as past Sonic games?

IIZUKA-SAN: Good question. Actually, we’re proud to present an entirely new game engine for the creation of Sonic 2017.

AARON: Does this mean you’re throwing out the styles of the past?

IIZUKA-SAN: Not at all. We’re evolving them.

This new engine features advanced lighting effects, physics based rendering, enhanced detail on water reflections and liquid elements, and Screen Space Global Illumination — in short, it’s the highest level of graphical fidelity we have ever created for a Sonic game.

Today we are proud to debut this new engine to you: We call it… the Hedgehog Engine 2.

First look

IIZUKA-SAN: What you’re about to see here is actual early gameplay. In this level, the city is under attack by Eggman’s 2017. (FORCES) Now, powered by the Hedgehog Engine 2, let’s enjoy the world exclusive first look at Sonic 2017.


AARON: Wow. lizuka-san, thank you for showing us that. I remember the first time I saw this, my thought was: “Wow, the visuals are gorgeous.” Audience, what did you guys think?

AARON: So, lizuka-san, besides the fact that it looks fantastic, what can you tell us about what we just saw?

IIZUKA-SAN: There was a reason we said this game was by the team that made Sonic Colors and Sonic Generations, and that’s because, as you saw, it builds on the foundation those games created.

AARON: I noticed Sonic was boosting, like in Generations and Colors, but… were those Wisps he picked up there?

IIZUKA-SAN: That’s right. Just like in Sonic Colors, you’ll be able to pick up Wisps as Modern Sonic to fill your boost gauge. You can also defeat enemies to fill it, too.

MIKE: I think Sonic is a little overpowered, personally. Maybe you should make it so that Gold Rings don’t save his life anymore.

IIZUKA-SAN: Sorry, Mike.

ROGER: (Sarcastic consoling, to Mike) There there, buddy.

AARON: Are we running fast through all the levels as Sonic, or is there a bit more to Modern Sonic’s gameplay style?

IIZUKA-SAN: Speed is a key part of Sonic, but platforming is also important. Like in both Sonic Colors and Sonic Generations, you will be able to take multiple routes through a level, allowing you to replay it to discover new areas. And, of course, collectible red star rings will also be appearing.

AARON: And in the background of that level, we were seeing the battle against Eggman unfolding all around us?

What to expect

IIZUKA-SAN: Yes, that’s right. What you’re seeing here is just the beginning, and there’s so much more in Sonic 2017 that we’re excited to show to you soon.

AARON: Amazing. Thank you so much for that first look, Iizuka-san. Now, I know we just got all that new info, but for those who are excited, when can we expect to see more about Sonic 2017?

IIZUKA-SAN: We’ll be revealing even more soon, with our very first look at Classic Sonic happening over the next two months. There may also be another important reveal happening around May, but I can’t give you any other hints on that yet. Please look forward to it.

AARON: Hmm… sounds mysterious, but I think the audience is pretty excited. Thank you, lizuka-san. Alright, with that done, let’s go ahead and move to the Q&A!

Previous Article

Tails' Channel launching "Tails' Channel Takes", a new foray into opinion-based programming

Next Article

EXCLUSIVE: Panel script for Sonic SXSW 2017 uncovered by archivist

Related Posts