In an interview with VGC, Takashi Iizuka noted that Naoto Ohshima and his company Arzest are the primary developers of Sonic Superstars, with long time series composer Jun Senoue working on the game’s audio.
In the interview, Iizuka emphasizes that Ohshima, who remains a friend from their days working on the series, brings experience as both an artist and a level designer for Sonic 1 and Sonic CD. “When we talk about people who are still around who worked on the classic Sonic games, there are not a lot of people who are actively creating games leftover from that really small group,” Iizuka says, referring to himself, Ohshima, and Senoue.
Though Senoue is credited to be the head of audio, others both inside and outside of SEGA will be contributing to the game’s soundtrack, with Iizuka specifically citing Tee Lopes.
This classic Sonic collaboration could be interpreted as a mixed blessing. Its talent sets it up as a game steeped in the developer legacy of the series. However, both Senoue and Arzest’s records have not been squeaky clean since the days of Sonic 3: fans have been quite critical of Senoue’s retro-styled music from Sonic the Hedgehog 4 onward, and the quality of Arzest (and its spiritual predecessor Artoon) is quite inconsistent, with Yoshi’s New Island and Balan Wonderworld having been critically panned.
Regardless if this team decision is a boost or a headwind, buzz for the game remains strong, and impressions have largely been positive. We at Sonic Stadium will have our own hands-on impressions available soon, so be on the lookout!