Whether or not you’re happy that Sega is releasing a remake of one of the lesser-loved Super Monkey Ball games, at least it’s getting a pretty good bonus character. Super Monkey Ball Banana Blitz HD is adding Sonic the Hedgehog-the proper, “Classic” Sonic, mind you-as an unlockable member of the Monkey Ball roster.
The short announcement trailer shows off Sonic in-action and gives us a brief look at his stats. Naturally, Sonic has a maxed-out speed stat in Banana Blitz HD along with pretty high jump and bounce stats, which could make him an attractive pick for Monkey Ball speedrunners. It looks like the bananas scattered across Banana Blitz HD’s stages are replaced with rings when you play as Sonic (okay, get your jokes about this automatically making Super Monkey Ball Banana Blitz HD the best 3D Sonic game out of your system now).
Really, with the rings added to the stage, Classic Sonic looks right at home in the colorful stages of Super Monkey Ball. Thank goodness Sega didn’t go for a movie Sonic tie-in.
Super Monkey Ball Banana Blitz HD is also adding new costumes for its roster of monkey pals, including an adorable pirate outfit for AiAi and a spooky Frankenstein’s monster look for GonGon.
In all other respects, Super Monkey Ball Banana Blitz HD looks like a nice visual upgrade to the 2006 original, which was a launch title for the Nintendo Wii. While the addition of jumping arguably moves the gameplay far away from the purity of Super Monkey Ball’s stage-tilting, ball-rolling basics, it’s still a classic Monkey Ball game in spirit and presentation.
Super Monkey Ball Banana Blitz HD will be released on October 29 on Nintendo Switch, PS4, and Xbox One for $39.99 USD. A PC release via Steam will follow at a later date.