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This Sonic Forces trailer shows that we’re still in the phase when a Sonic game looks good

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But will it break the Sonic cycle?

A new trailer for the upcoming Sonic Forces was released today, and it looks tentatively good. I use the word “tentatively” here, because if there's anything Sonic fans know, it's the feeling of disappointment that comes when promising games turn out to be stuffed with random features nobody asked for.

The new footage gives us the first look at the Classic Sonic gameplay for Sonic Forces, as opposed to the Modern Sonic clip released back in March. The trailer confirms that Sega will be taking a Sonic Generations style approach with Forces, with gameplay showing off the latest take on the classic Green Hill Zone level, which has been redone with fancy 3D graphics even as the traditional 2D Sonic platforming remains the same.

It’s a good sign for Forces, insofar as it doesn’t look bad. But much like the Modern Sonic trailer, there doesn’t seem to be much new here to differentiate the Classic Sonic level from games like Sonic Generations or the episodic Sonic the Hedgehog 4. And as fans are all too aware, the Sonic cycle can strike at any time.

Still, for now it’s nice to enjoy the footage, and cling to the glimmer of hope that it inspires. And who knows? Maybe Sonic Forces will be the one to break the cycle.

Sonic Forces is scheduled to be released on the Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC in late 2017.