Why there was never going to be a SONIC MANIA 2

Plus two classic THE LEGEND OF ZELDA games land on Switch and IMMORTALS FENYX RISING sequel is cancelled



  • F1 MANAGER 23 - 31 July 2023 - PC, Xbox One, Xbox Series S|X, PlayStation 5, PlayStation 4
  • FLUTTER AWAY - 3 August 2023 - PC
  • SIDE DECIDE - 3 August 2023 - Switch
  • BALDUR’S GATE 3 - 3 August 2023 - PC

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SIFTER is produced by Kyle Pauletto, Fiona Bartholomaeus, Daniel Ang, Adam Christou and Omi Koulas. Mitch Loh is Senior Producer and Gianni Di Giovanni is our Executive Producer. Thanks to Audio Technica Australia for their support of SIFTER.


KYLE: Hi I’m Kyle Pauletto

FIONA: and I’m Fiona Bartholomaeus

KYLE: Welcome to Walkthrough, SIFTER’s weekly recap on the biggest news in video games. 

FIONA: This week, we find out why there was never a Sonic Mania 2, CD Projekt Red sacks a bunch of their team, and some of the best Zelda games arrive on the Switch.

Here is the news for Sunday 30th of July. Let’s go!


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KYLE: Finally a big rumour has been quashed this week, there was no major falling out between the Sonic Mania devs and SEGA which killed a sequel to the beloved game, the team just wanted to make something else. 

One of the first spin off Sonic games not made in house, Sonic Mania, was helmed by Christian Whitehead of Headcannon who in an interview with Game Informer this week said they still had a great relationship with SEGA.

So while the 16-bit style Sonic games are done for now, there is always Sonic Superstars to look forward to which looks like a fun reinterpretation of the classic sidescroller… this time in 3D and with four player co-op.

FIONA: Headcannon are working on the recently announced Penny’s Big Breakaway, which isn’t strictly a Sonic game, really channels a lot of that Dreamcast energy for this 3D platformer and will be out next year on everything.


FIONA: In an incredible display of dedication and free time, a fan has reportedly spent around 200 hours sifting through information from pre-release footage and teasers to create what they say is the complete Starfield skill tree. 

Reddit user asd8bhd has posted a 44 page Google document to the game’s subreddit packed with screenshots from everything posted online, and shows more than 60 individual skills.

While the final build of the game might vary, the compiled skill trees seem to be broken down into Physical, Social, Combat, Science, and Tech categories, each with four tiers from Novice to Master.

KYLE: God I wish I could be this excited for a game, for asd8bhd’s sake I hope it lives up to the hype when Starfield releases on September 6.


KYLE: CD Projekt Red, the company behind the Witcher and Cyberpunk 2077, has revealed a major company restructure is in the works.

Announced in a statement by CEO Adam Kiciński, the restructure also includes 9% of the studio’s workforce being laid off, which is roughly around 100 people.

Kiciński has said based on current and expected projects next year, there just aren’t enough opportunities for all the staff. 

FIONA: This is the third round of layoffs this year for the Polish developer.

With major sequels and a new franchise coming in the next few years, it’s definitely an interesting move.


FIONA: Grab your Master Sword and Triforce of Courage as two classic Legend of Zelda games arrive on the Switch.

The Game Boy titles, Legend of Zelda Oracle of Ages and Legend of Zelda Oracle of Seasons, were surprisingly dropped early this week for Nintendo Switch Online users, and the best thing is you don’t need the extra Expansion Pack tier to play.

The twin games follow Link as he’s transported to different worlds to save the captured Oracles, using powers to move back and forth in time, or to change the in game seasons.

KYLE: Once you’ve finished one game you can carry across your progress to the second and unlock a secret ending using a pass code, remember those? 

SIFTER EP Gianni has been raving about these games for years, so if you want to play some of the best handheld Zelda titles do yourself a favour and play these Capcom developed classics.

KYLE: Do you remember Ubisofts Immortals Fenyx Rising, the suspiciously familiar open world Breath of the Wild-like game?

Well despite it somehow selling pretty well, Ubisoft has reportedly axed its sequel.

Despite the game's favourable reviews, the company's recent strategy shift towards its powerhouse franchises like Assassin’s Creed is behind this decision. 

FIONA: Ubisoft Quebec, the studio behind Immortals Fenyx Rising, will instead work on old reliable franchises like Assassin’s Creed, Far Cry, and Tom Clancy games. 

And hey, while I didn’t play Immortals Fenyx Rising, and had no intention of playing it in the future, I definitely don’t have much interest left in more Assassins Creed or Far Cry. 


FIONA: Sci-Fi colony sim Jumplight Odyssey will blast into Early Access later this month. 

Developed by Melbourne studio League of Geeks this anime inspired game which is part Sims part FTL will be available on PC from August 21st.  

KYLE: You can head back into our Lightmap archives to have a listen to our interview with producer Kelsey Gamble, who also chats with Gianni about Solium Infernum, League of Geeks other game.

We’ll chuck a link in the show notes.


FIONA: That’s it for the big headlines, here’s what’s coming out over the next week.

KYLE: F1 Manager 2023 lets you helm a Formula 1 team from the comfort of your couch. Coming to PC, PlayStation, and Xbox on July 31, you'll make key decisions, guide your team through races, and adapt to dynamic F1 events.

FIONA: Side Decide by Sydney based developer Blue Volcano is out on the Switch. Move a block around a maze matching symbols on the faces to the patterns on the floor to navigate. It’s got a chill vibe and wooden toy block aesthetic. You can pick that up on Thursday August 3.

KYLE: In a games market full of chill games, this one might be chillest. Imagine a peaceful stroll through a lush rainforest, where you're just a butterfly researcher uncovering the mysteries of nature. Oh and you get to make friends with a Capybara! That's Flutter Away, launching on PC on August 3rd.

FIONA: and finally a game so large other studios have moved their release dates to avoid it, Baldur’s Gate 3 the humongous fantasy RPG from Larian Studios leaves early access on PC on August 3. Adam is reviewing this one, so keep an eye on in the coming weeks. 


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FIONA: This has been Walkthrough by SIFTER, my name is Fiona Bartholomaeus

KYLE: And my name is Kyle Pauletto. Thank you so much for listening. 

FIONA: If you’re looking for something to listen to now you’ve reached the end of Walkthrough, why not check out our brand new review show: Drop Rate! Hosted by Chris Button and featuring some of the best games writers sharing their thoughts and feelings on new releases. Search for SIFTER Drop Rate in your podcast player now, look for the green icon.

KYLE: SIFTER is produced by myself, Fiona Bartholomaeus, Adam Christou and Daniel Ang. Mitch Loh is Senior Producer who edited this episode and Gianni Di Giovanni is our Executive Producer. 

FIONA: Thanks to Brian Fairbanks from Salty Dog Sounds for composing the Walkthrough theme tune. 

Thanks to Audio Technica Australia for their support of SIFTER’s podcasts.

KYLE: Thanks again for listening, we’ll be back with more news next Sunday.

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Bethesda Game Studios
Bethesda Softworks
Release Date:
September 6, 2023

Jumplight Odyssey

League of Geeks
League of Geeks
Release Date:
August 21, 2023

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