New information regarding Sonic the Hedgehog 4: Episode II was unveiled by SEGA of America’s Digital Brand Manager Ken Balough on the most recent episode of GameSpot’s “On the Spot”, including a new gameplay trailer, new features to be found in both Episodes I and II, and release dates across all platforms. Among the new features discussed, it was revealed that Sonic the Hedgehog 4: Episode II will make use of “lock-on technology” similar to that seen in Sonic the Hedgehog 1, 2 and 3, among many other Genesis/Mega Drive titles when combined with Sonic & Knuckles, which will allow owners of both Episode I and II to unlock new content in Episode I, including Metal Sonic as a playable character. Metal Sonic will have his own unique story that will directly tie into the plot of Sonic CD and bridge the gap between it and Sonic the Hedgehog 4. Also worth noting is that two new levels were revealed in the new gameplay trailer, one appearing to be based off of Oil Ocean Zone and Sandopolis Zone from Sonic the Hedgehog 2 and Sonic & Knuckles, respectively, while the other is Stardust Speedway Zone from Sonic CD and Sonic Generations, which appears briefly in the “Episode Metal” scene of the trailer.
Sonic the Hedgehog 4: Episode II will be made available for PlayStation Network on May 15th, Xbox Live Arcade on May 16th, iOS and Android Tegra 3 devices as well as PC in May, all other Android devices in June, and finally Windows Phone 7 in July, with the exact dates for all mobile platforms still forthcoming.
After the break, you can watch “On the Spot” to see the new trailer and interview with Ken Balough around the 30 minute mark.