As a nostalgia trip, Sonic Mania is impeccably precise. So, naturally, you’ll want to really nail those throwback kicks by, uh, playing it through an unrelated publisher’s digital subscription service. The blue blur and his grossly mutated twin-tailed fox friend are now sprinting through EA’s Origin Access Premiere service, with Two Point Hospital and Endless Legend set to join them in the near future.
Doing away with Sega’s reckless reinvention of the spikey nuisance, Sonic Mania was a rare thing – bringing fans on to make a Sonic game wot harkens back to series’ good ol’ 2D roots. It worked, too, and now you can check it out as part of your monthly Origin subscription.
I haven’t played much Mania (save for a weekend of Dundee sofa-surfing with a friend’s Switch) but it’s good fun. Sega told some prominent fan-game developers to make a “proper” one with their blessing, and it turned out quite nicely – a throwback platformer precision-engineered to strike the part of my head wot remembers asking my cousin to help me get through Casino Night Zone on a hand-me-down Mega Drive. I don’t know if you’re reading this, Ben, but I’m stuck on Hyrdocity Zone and could use a hand.
Sonic’s EA debut also arrives with the Encore DLC, which adds forgotten characters Mighty The Armadillo and Ray The Flying Squirrel. While not included with Origin Access, it’s only 4 quid, and lets you gesture dangerously close to the absurd expanse of Sonic’s expanded friend’s list. If you’re an Origin Access Premier subscriber, you can pop over and download Sonic Mania here. Otherwise, you can pick it up on its own for £14.99/$19.99.
According to EA’s blog, however, it looks like Sonic is just the spearhead for Sega’s push into Origin. These days, they’re better known by us PC folks as a strategy publisher, and plan on following up the blue blur with gorgeous Civ-like Endless Legend and healthcare tycoon Two Point Hospital later this Summer. That’s all they’ve announced for now, but I wouldn’t be shocked to see a few more Sega games trickle over EA’s platform.