Sonic Generations

by Wencke Schuncken
author awarded score: 85/100

Sonic Generations Review
Publisher: SEGA
Developer: Sonic Team
Format Reviewed: Playstation 3
Reviewed By: Wencke Schuncken

Tired? Not a spark of energy left in your body? Don't waste any more time and start playing Sonic Generations! Ok this seems like a commercial but believe me as soon as Sonic is in your console, you will sense the energy Sonic supplies. Hyper music, super fast Sonic in action, and hey we didn't even started to play yet. Let's check if this game keeps on tinkling our energy and motivation to keep on playing.

Sonics’ friend organized a small surprise party for him, but the party didn't last for long. An evil looking cloud becomes visible in the sky with electric beams and consumes Sonics’ friends one by one. Although Sonic tries to help them, it seems that he isn't invited to the evil cloud's party. What can he do? Can he find his friends and rescue them? Sonic to the rescue ...what a birthday...

The evil looking cloud is a new enemy, called the Time Eater, and sucked Sonic´ s friends through various “time holes” and scattered them across different places in Sonics’ history. In order to find and rescue his friends, Sonic needs to explore a strange dimension full of stages, where everything has been drained of color. As Sonic searches for his friends, he encounters his younger self, Classic Sonic, along with a younger Classic Tails. As the two Tails determine that Time Eater's actions are damaging time itself, both Modern and Classic race through their history, restoring time to normal and rescuing their friends. On their quest they discover that the mastermind behind Time Eater is Dr. Ivo "Eggman" Robotnik, who has joined forces with his past self to erase Sonics’ victories from history. Although the Time Eater manages to overwhelm the two Sonics, the support of their friends and the power of the Chaos Emeralds allow them to become Super Sonics and defeat the two Eggmen. Does Sonic get a second change to celebrate his birthday?

Before entering a stage you can choose to switch between the two types of Sonic characters. This exchange is called an act. One type of act lets you play side-scroller style stages with easy to learn classic Sonic controls, the other switches the gameplay between side scrolling 2D to 3D forward views. Exactly, from classic to up to date high speed platforming gameplay, bringing colors and friends back alive. Speaking of gameplay, anyone probably knows about Sonics’ huge fast gameplay; run, slide, jump, boost, destroy any enemy that comes on your way, take various routes and collect as many rings as possible. Rings are essential to take damage and to make it safely till the end of each level. If you don't have any rings left in possession and Sonic takes damage, you'll lose a life. Besides the life saving rings, it's recommended to collect special Red Star Rings to unlock special items such as art work and music (see collection room for example artwork)

The levels are a time span over twenty years Sonic, but now you can play levels with either the classic or the modern Sonic. The big difference is of course that the classic levels are two dimensional side scrolling stages played with classic Sonic with classic moves such as the spin attack and spin dash, while the Modern Sonic boosting around in a 2D/3D environment using the style of Sonic Colors and Sonic Unleashed. When a stage is cleared, whether with Classic or Modern Sonic, a character called Omochao awards you with points as a gift based on the rank you earned. Use these points wisely to buy skills in the Skill Shop. Skills will give you new abilities, such as a shield that provides you from a single hit or even play Sonic the Hedgehog on the SEGA Mega Drive. There are all kind of skill effects like damage protection or increasing speed. Speed is essential to reach certain post in a level. If Sonic is going too fast and you cannot follow the action on screen, just play a stage several times and start noticing the adaptation to the speed level in one act. By then you'll notice the possibilities each stage has to offer, with special routes to follow.

It probably won't come as a surprise, but the female types of characters in Sonic Generations are all stars from the past and present Sonic games. We give most of the credit to Amy Rose, the pink girl Hedgedog who believes herself to be Sonics’ girlfriend and will do anything to help him. Cream the Rabbit is a six year old female rabbit that can fly with her ears quite a great distance. Blaze is a young female cat. As her name implies, Blaze's main ability is pyrokinesis; the ability to control fire. Last but not least is Rouge, depicted as a professional treasure hunter devoted to the pursuit of jewels. She fearlessly does whatever needed, disregards personal cost, and ignores abstract morality or manners for potential profit. Her "feminine charm" makes her appear careless, but she is actually scheming and manipulative. Although the female characters participate in this game, it mainly focuses on the Classic and Modern Sonic.

This game is just amazing and so much fun for both gamers who grew up with Sonic as for the “new” generation of gamers. Sonic Generations provides gameplay and amazing stages covering two decades of fun. The design is simply stunning and although classic Sonic rushes through 2D stages, you really don't get the impression of the 8bit gameplay as it is covered in a modern environment. Not only is the gameplay and stages enjoyable, but the main reason to keep on playing is storyline related. Who doesn't want to rescue Sonics’ friends and start celebrating his birthday party he deserves badly! We wish him all the best for now and for the next decades to come with pure fun.