Exclusive: Takashi Iizuka Hopes 2022 Sonic Game Will Lay Foundation For Future Titles

Takashi Iizuka has revealed that his goal with the 2022 Sonic game is to create a landmark title in the franchise that will lay the foundation for future titles – much like Sonic Adventure did 20 years before it.

In an exclusive interview with The Sonic Stadium, the Sonic Team leader and series game producer said that the development studio had spent a long time trying to build “something new and challenging”. He hopes that its impact will be felt for a number of years – suggesting that it could influence future Sonic games for at least the next decade.

When we asked Iizuka-san whether the 2022 Sonic the Hedgehog title – rumoured to be titled ‘Sonic Rangers’ – could be considered an ‘anniversary’ title in the same way that Sonic Adventure 2 and Sonic Generations were before it, he instead cited Dreamcast classic Sonic Adventure as an example of what he wanted to accomplish.

“The new title in development is progressing towards a 2022 release, so I can’t really call it an Anniversary title,” Iizuka-san told The Sonic Stadium. “However, Sonic Adventure laid the foundation for 20 years of Sonic titles after its release, so in the same way I really hope that this new title releasing in 2022 lays the foundation for the following future Sonic titles – that is the idea behind the challenge for the team.”

Iizuka-san further explained that, while he couldn’t share any specific details about the next mainline Sonic game (and we did ask about that mysterious glyph – we tried!), the reason for showcasing it at the recent Sonic Central livestream – an event dedicated to Sonic’s 30th Anniversary – was to reassure fans post-Sonic Forces that a new game is indeed in development.

“Since this title is still mid-development there is nothing I can speak to, but I did want to say that the development team has been spending their time to do something new and challenging,” Iizuka-san added. “Through a lot of trial and error the team is looking to present to everyone a new Sonic game, and I hope your warm support of their work can motivate them to really deliver against that challenge.”

Catch the full exclusive interview with Iizuka-san, only on The Sonic Stadium on June 23rd.

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Founder of The Sonic Stadium and creator/co-organiser of the Summer of Sonic convention. Loves talking about Sonic the Hedgehog in his spare time. Likes Sonic Colours a little too much for his own good, apparently.


  1. The new direction is a positive development, but it is a little sad that after such a long silence from Sonic Team since Sonic Forces that they couldn’t offer up more information than “There’s a game”, something we’ve known since at least early 2019. I really hope that this development cycle ends up able to show us something of more substance soon, so I’ll look forward to the full interview! They really need to give people more to look at/discuss if they want to give people confidence in the project. It’s never terribly promising when Sonic Team keeps their cards close to their chest like this.

    1. Don’t forget, COVID hit Japanese development hard. Way harder than western development. This probably would be a 2021 game otherwise.

      1. I agree it probably didn’t help things along, but it worries me slightly when RGG studio can put together a fully-fledged presentation with tons of gameplay footage and details out of nowhere just weeks before the announcement of Sonic’s Project 2022 came about.
        I’m sure the developers for RGG had a number of headstarts when it came to their development, but it’s not like Sonic Team hasn’t had any time since Forces to formulate something to show or at least talk about. When Sonic Forces was revealed, they played things very coy and didn’t show anything of substance for a very long time. Not until the year after they’d revealed it. The way Project 2022 is playing out right now does make me worry that we’re in for a very bad case of deja vu.

  2. So the future of Sonic is….

    BotW rip-offs, filled with empty open worlds, because SEGA now hates linear 3D platformers!?

    A stand-alone game is one thing, but the future going foward?

    What if someone outside of SEGA wants to make a brand new Sonic Adventure game as the next entry in the franchise? Are they just going to condemn that because they want nothing but THIS to exist?

    No wonder they fired Team Headcannon, despite Sonia Mania being nearly everything that Genesis-era fans could ever want.

    1. you shouldn’t judge this based off of what some random leaker on 4chan’s opinion of the game is

      an open world Sonic has been a dream game for many fans for the past couple of years. Just look at Sonic Utopia, Green Hill Paradise, Sonic Project Hero.

      People want this. They’re tired of hollow linear platformers like Forces. They’re ready for a change up.

      Let’s just hope it’s a great game.

      (Also, they didn’t “fire” headcanon, what are you even talking about…?)

    2. Wasn’t the exploration of the adventure games a reason why you guys love them?

  3. Though I’m looking forward to it, I would hope that this new sonic game isn’t a Sonic only game, after the Adventure game, the other playable characters just dropped off the earth and I’m not talking about temporary one stage playable characters, legit stages, I wanna play as Tails, Knuckle, Rouge, Blaze, Shadow, even Eggman, hell bring Marine from Sonic Rush adventure into the game, go Sat AM, bring Sally into the mix. There’s tons of potential for future sonic game, Sonic Mania should be a perfect example, the group took what people liked and made it a game, even brought Mighty and Ray back a couple of fan favorites. I know I’m sounding like I’m asking too much but I want a Sonic game with more characters that’s not another version of sonic or just another hedgehog in general

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