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Sega debuted Sonic Frontiers during The Game Awards today, the next entry in its iconic franchise.

Frontiers is coming out in 2022 for PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X/S, Switch, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC.

This will be the first open-world Sonic game, although Sega’s marketing using the term “open-zone.” This means we could see several, large, connected zones instead of one giant, open world. The first look at The Game Awards showed a setting full of grass plains and ruins. I know some people get unreasonably upset when we compare new games to Breath of the Wild, but Sonic Frontiers is clearly taking inspiration from The Legend of Zelda’s big open-world outing.

Sonic Team Japan is developing Frontier, with Morio Kishimoto serving as director, a role he’s held for other recent Sonic games like Sonic Forces, Sonic Lost World, and Sonic Colors (the Wii version). Ian Flynn, who wrote for the cartoon show Sonic Boom and the Sonic comics, is writing Frontier’s story.

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“Sonic Frontiers is a huge leap forward for the franchise, delivering an evolved gameplay experience that can be enjoyed by longtime Sonic fans and action-adventure enthusiasts alike,” said Takashi Iizuka, creative officer at Sonic Team USA, noted in a press release sent to GamesBeat. “With the effort of the talented developers at Sonic Team Japan, we’ve created an all-new style of gameplay experience for Sonic the Hedgehog, where players will be able to explore lush and expansive landscapes with Sonic’s signature speed and abilities. There’s sure to be lots of twists and turns around every corner in Sonic Frontiers, and we’re excited to unveil more information about the game over the coming months.”

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