Catering to players susceptible to motion sickness is one of those nice things the developing team can do that never would have occurred to an outsider looking in. You don’t notice the lack of motion sickness while you play, but you definitely would have noticed the presence of it. It turns out some members of the Sonic Frontiers team had difficulty playing the game early on because of this issue.
In an interview with Famitsu, the producer of the game, Sachiko Kawamura, briefly mentioned that motion sickness was an issue that the team directly tackled. As she tells it, members of the Q&A team were incredibly helpful in testing the game, but she noticed that a couple of them could not finish playing it. They suffered from 3D motion sickness while watching the little blue blur zip around. Anyone who has had their nose stuck in a game while on a long road trip understands how awful nausea can feel.
Kawamura decided that it would be pretty disappointing if several consumers were unable to enjoy the game because of this. She said, “I thought it would be a shame if countermeasures were not taken, so this is something that we decided to take very seriously. In the end, we prepared a lot of countermeasures to reduce the amount of 3D motion sickness.”
She didn’t elaborate on what the actual countermeasures were though, unfortunately. The main theory on what causes motion sickness while gaming is sensory conflict; when what you see doesn’t match up with what you feel. Maybe in later interviews, Kawamura and the team will talk a bit about what had to be adjusted to limit that sensory conflict. Regardless, it’s cool to know that this was a potential issue that was handled before the game was released.
Speaking of which, Sonic Frontiers has been officially released for two days, since November 8. However, it was one of two major releases this year that found its way out of retail stores way too early. Some people were able to buy the physical game as early as October 30, which caused tension for fans who then had to avoid major spoilers. God of War Ragnarok was also accidentally released early by a rogue retail facility.
Reviews of the game seem to be at both ends of the spectrum so far, but it seems there are many players out there who are enjoying the experience. Sonic Frontiers is available now for Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S, and PC.