Preview of Team Sonic Racing

Sonic the Hedgehog, Shadow the Hedgehog, Knuckles the Echidna, and Tails the Fox are racing side-by-side for the finish line. Photo Credit:

Sonic the Hedgehog, Shadow the Hedgehog, Knuckles the Echidna, and Tails the Fox are racing side-by-side for the finish line. Photo Credit:

Fernando Castillo, Writer, Field Reporter

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Team Sonic Racing is an upcoming kart racing video game and is one of the spinoffs in Sega’s Sonic the Hedgehog series. In this game, players can control one of the fifteen characters in the series in sports cars. Gameplay is similar towards the Mario Kart series, only slightly varied to look like a Sonic game. Unlike Sonic and Sega All-Stars Racing and Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed, this game focuses on team play. Players drive on a team of three, and the only way to achieve victory is to work together. The game is developed by Sumo Digital (which worked on All-Stars Racing and All-Stars Transformed) and will be published by Sega for the XBOX ONE, PlayStation 4, Windows, and Nintendo Switch. While it’s unclear when the game will be released, it is scheduled to be released on the 4th quarter of 2018 (October, November, and December), or in 2019, according to rumors.

Team Sonic Racing has the Sonic characters racing each other in sports-looking cars. The fact that Sonic could drive, though, is beyond me. Players choose a character (Sonic, Knuckles, Tails, etc.) and drive around the track. There are 21 tracks in total, each split from seven zones. Each zone is based off from the previous Sonic games. Each character is categorized by the following: speed, technique, and power. Players can run over speed panels to gain more speed, perform tricks and flips midair, and drift around tight corners. Powerups can be collected and could be either used offensively or defensively. Sounds like they ripped off Mario Kart, right? Well, not exactly.

Unlike most kart racing games out there, this game features cooperative play, or playing as a team. This is based off from Sonic Heroes. Since only twelve characters can be in a race at a time, there must be four teams of three. Players can choose their teammate, as well as having the option to fill the team with the same character. For example, Team Sonic and Fakers (only Sonic fans would understand this joke). While racing, players must keep in mind of where their teammates stand and what powerups they have. Also, they don’t win races by crossing the start/finish line first after a set of laps. Therefore, a team that is the most efficient “wins” the race. For example, Sonic wins the race and gets 15 points. His teammates, Tails and Knuckles, finish 3rd (10 points) and 4th (9 points), respectively. Together, with 34 points, they beat all the other teams. Also, teams have an “Ultimate” meter. When its full, the team could each get a short burst of speed. The duration could be extended by hitting other racers. So, if you’re behind and the “Ultimate” meter is full, go crazy.

There are several game modes that are officially in the game. Grand Prix is a championship-based mode, where teams must compete against for points and become the most efficient team. Time trial allows players to drive around to get the fastest time possible. This could players to find their lines. Exhibition is where players can race with custom rules. Then there is “Team Adventure” mode. Team Adventure is a story-driven mode that is basically a tutorial. This mode explains why Sonic and his friends are racing. This mode is divided into chapters with a couple of missions the player must complete to move to the next. Teams are predetermined in this mode. Also, this mode will allow the player to unlock extras and the ability to customize the car. The game will have local multiplayer and up to twelve people in an online race. And kind of like Fortnite: Save the World, there could be an online team in Team Adventure.

Overall, this game is unique compared to other games. We really don’t see much video games where the players are forced to work together to be the best team. We see games where they have real-life drivers. Although they have teammates in real-life, they must compete against each other and other drivers (like NASCAR and Formula 1) for the championship. I may be biased since I love Sonic and the Sonic The Hedgehog series, but I would recommend a racing game like this, especially if the game developers and publishers want their products.