November seems likely
According to SteamDB, the date was modified from a September placeholder to November 8, which is a Tuesday. From there it was changed to December 3 (a Saturday), likely to throw folks off the scent. In any case, it’s likely that we won’t see Sonic Frontiers until way later in the year, with the “holiday 2022” claim holding true.
So looking back at the last batch of prior 3D Sonic games, I think we can see a pattern here:
- Sonic Forces – November, 2017
- Sonic Lost World – October, 2013
- Sonic Generations – November, 2011
- Sonic Colors – November, 2010
Clearly, Sega likes to get these games out right before Christmas, as Sonic is a family affair. November 8 completely makes sense from multiple angles. It’s the right time for the iron to strike from a sales perspective, though it will be competing with God of War Ragnarok and Skull and Bones on that same day.
That said, Sonic has a pretty long tail and isn’t directly at war with either of those games. It might get tougher competition a few weeks later on November 18 when Pokemon Scarlet and Violet hit, but early November would give Sega some time to polish Frontiers before it gets ready to ship. In any case, if Sega is still sticking to “holiday 2022,” we’ll find out the Sonic Frontiers release date soon enough.