Monday, January 11, 2016

2016: Year of the 25th Sonic Anniversary

2016 Is the 25th Anniversary for Sonic the Hedgehog.
That's great! (This post is mostly about that. Skip to the bottom for strictly SonicGear)

But what does it mean?
"We're still finding out", is mostly the answer here in early January. Sega's made a couple of announcements that are Gear relevant though, so it's time to take a look.

1. 25th Anniversary Branding-
This means they picked out the little '25th' seal/icon/decal type thing that will be stamped onto everything made for specifically this year anniversary. So, your collectibles might be extra collectible if they're made with that thing on it. You've seen the one for the 20th, this is similar & will operate in a similar way.

2. They said the "Celebration Lasts All Year"
That means that it's not just on Sonic's birthday that anniversary things will happen. So that's good, but it's also pretty loose. Meaning any event or item or whatever they have for the year can just be attributed to the anniversary. Still, it sounds positive

3. A style guide will release
What's a style guide? It's a super accurate account of all the proper colors (Sonic's shoe should be whatevername red) and proportions & things for the characters. So if someone's adding art or whatever to a product, it won't be all mis colored and off model. The current theory on it is that it will be a guide for Boomstyle, since there is already a modern Sonic & classic Sonic style guide.

4. The main companies to still have the license are:
Tomy, Bio World, F4F, Archie. These are all pretty obvious though. No one would dare touch F4F because they clean house with expensive amazing figures. Archie, clearly...still world is still in stores doing successful shirts and Tomy is doing well enough, despite their figures being complained about (overpiced) and showing up in closeout shops like Ross / Marshalls / Big Lots etc.

5. Arcade fun time
Indoor entertainment with Sonic branding is big this year, they've got 4 games coming up, all of which you can see already on SonicGear. (Air hockey, mini shoot basketball, etc type games plus the runners-type actual video game kiosk) So, check your indoor funzone type places this year. (Although, how common are those?)

What are the hopes for the big 25?
1. A new console game or something for consoles & PC. The rumor mill states Sonic Adventure 3, but of course that is the rumor mill. The hope is that it's an actual Sonic-Sonic game, not boom, not sports, not some spinoff or gimmick game like Werehogs and demons.
2. Someone OTHER THAN Tomy gets a figure license or JW gets it back so that there are other nonboom figures with more articulation
3. Boom is confirmed for getting more episodes
4. A commemorative item of some sort is released to collect
5. Some kind of fun fan event

What are the fears?
1. No game except arcade.
2. Everything gets made into Boom because the Boom show is doing well and it "Crushes all other types of Sonic merch & characters" (RIP Knuckles fans)
3. The "Style Guide" changes Sonic's look somehow in a big way & isn't actually the Boomguide at all and the change makes him look bad
4. Big the cat
5. There's a game but it stinks

Gear This Week:
Good to see clothing keeping up and didn't turn to just Boom as fans were fearing. Winter wear is getting into full swing too, so that'll keep getting updates, appropriately enough. The "Collection Care" page was also fixed this week. It was the final holdover broken page from when the site software had serious trouble ages ago. It is now improved with better links & more info.

Next week: More winter wear, more clothing in general, winter tends towards clothes season.