Sonic Generations Review
Sonic Generations is the latest game produced by Sonic Team. It was released in late 2011 across the Playstation 3, Xbox 360 and Nintendo DS, though for this review we will focus exclusively on the console versions.
The game features the much anticipated merging of the ”old" Sonic from the 2D Sega Genesis era and the "new" Sonic that began life in the 3D world of the Sega Dreamcast. While over the course of two decades the Sonic games have risen and fallen in popularity, this game shows effort in trying to regain their fan base, and ultimately succeeds.
The story begins with Sonic and his friends celebrating his 20th birthday (because it's Sonic's 20th anniversary), when suddenly a strange being known as Time Eater crashes the party, and sucks everyone into many different time holes. Sonic himself is thrown back in time and meets up with Classic Sonic, and together they team up to try and reverse the chaos.
There is not too much to the story, but this is not why someone plays a Sonic game, is it? The developers did a great job of separating both Sonics by keeping their looks intact. Classic Sonic is short, pudgy and does not speak, while Modern Sonic is much leaner, taller, and has a smart mouth. The story serves as a great way to explain why the gamer is playing as both versions of the Blue Blur.
Both versions of Sonic will have gameplay similar to their respective games, complete with astonishingly detailed remakes of classic Sonic stages such as Green Hill, the Chemical Plant, Casino Night and Mushroom Hill from the Sonic games of old, and the City Escape from the newer Sonic Adventure 2. Classic Sonic's levels are in the same vein as the 2D Sega Genesis versions. The entire stage is viewed in a 2D side view, and the high speed runs are back, though at time it felt as though Sonic felt a little too light on his feet, causing me to spend a lot of time in the air.
Modern Sonic plays just as he did in Sonic Adventure 1 and 2, with many ideas taken from the newer games Sonic Unleashed and Sonic Colors. The game is primarily viewed in 3D, from a third person perspective behind Sonic, but sometimes switches to the 2D side view for certain areas or enemies.
The sense of speed that comes from playing Modern Sonic is tremendous, especially playing as Super Sonic, his high speed version. The white-knuckle velocities you will reach will be sure to get your adrenaline pumping, though at speeds that great, any little mistake can cause you to stop dead in your tracks, which might be a turn off to some players.
The soundtrack to both versions of Sonic stages are more of your typical Sonic video game music. Ranging from hard rock to pulsing electronic music, the music is nothing to write home about but it certainly helps add ambience to the game, serving to subliminally pump you up as you reach maximum velocity from spin dashing your way through the map.
The graphics in the console versions of Sonic Generations are absolutely beautiful. Bright, colourful and highly detailed are the words to describe the beautiful re imagining of many beloved Sonic stages. The water looks phenomenal, and the blur on Sonic's feet make him truly live up to his Blue Blur nickname.
Some of the controls aren't perfect, causing you to accidentally crash into a wall or object and thus immediately halting your high speed glory, and the camera needs work in some areas of the game, particularly when you bump into said objects and the camera doesn't know how to react.
Apart from these small problems, though, the game will prove enjoyable for fans of Classic Sonic and Modern Sonic alike, and this feels like the best effort on Sonic Team's part to renew interest in nostalgic fans of the presumed-dead series and potentially revive it of its past glory.
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