New York Comic-Con: Sonic and the Black Knight Hands-On

Sonic and the Black Knight is playable in Sega's booth at New York Comic-con. The game is the second in Sega's storybook series starring the speedy hedgehog. This time out the spiky hero's adventure is inspired by tales of King Arthur. There was just one level of the game playable at...

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Sonic and the Black Knight is playable in Sega's booth at New York Comic-con. The game is the second in Sega's storybook series starring the speedy hedgehog. This time out the spiky hero's adventure is inspired by tales of King Arthur. There was just one level of the game playable at the kiosk in the booth, taken from the start of the adventure. The action was pretty remedial and eased us through the basics of gameplay. If you played Sonic and the Secret Rings for the Wii you should be right at home with this game. The action is still essentially on a rail that moves you through levels. You have a bit of control over where you move but you're still going down a fairly set path. This time out the game replaces Sonic's rings with golden fairies that serve the same basic role, keeping you from death. The demo also showed off blue fairies that basically replace the spring boards in levels. The other key change to the action is the addition of a sword that Sonic will be carrying and use to attack enemies. The sword is Sonic's new attack but doesn't work quite like his homing double jump attack. For this game you'll use the remote to slash the sword at enemies. The different control mechanics also call for a slightly different control scheme than Secret Rings, which only required you to hold the Wii remote sideways and tilt to move. You'll use the remote and nunchuck in a more standard control configuration this time. The end result so far seems to be pretty decent, once you get over the rail segments. The tutorial level got us up to speed on blocking, using a powerful attack triggered by the B button and gesturing with the Wii remote. The demo wrapped up with Sonic facing off against a big dragon and hacking the conspicuously bright blue horn on its nose off.

So far the game feels a lot like Secret Rings, with a few tweaks, so if you were into the game you should be fine with Black Knight. There's a nice sense of speed although, right now, the game doesn't look quite as good as Secret Rings. The color palette is on the flat side, partially due to the outdoor tutorial setting, and doesn't really pop. The controls are mostly solid although we expect gesturing to attack is going to get old pretty quick and we'd like jumping to feel tighter. Hopefully Sonic Team is going to polish things up in time for the game's March release. Have a look at some video to get a feel for what to expect.

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