3DS, Nintendo Wii, Playstation 3, Xbox 360
Reviews based on the Xbox 360 version
Release Date: November 1st, 2011
|Achievement Guide Available|
Sonic Generations is actually a well developed game with good intentions clearly in mind. The concept of paying homage to the character’s career is done well by bringing both the past and present Hedgehog, and his friends from the modern time into one title. To do this, the story finds the modern version having a cook out where everyone has gathered together, However, these fun times are interrupted by an unknown creature that kidnaps the friends, as well as the chili dogs, leaving Sonic the only person to save them, but in two different forms of course. The plot is moved along very little, mostly having some cut scenes after boss fights that move the plot along involing Eggman and Perfect Chaos. With three battles total, and the grand finale battle, the game doesn’t really come off as too long a title, and not much need for plot development other then the two Tails characters putting two and two together about the spce time continuum and how the create is tearing through it causing both Sonics to be in the same period of time together, and that the creature, known as the Time Eater, is devouring the worlds the two characters know well and that they need to race through the stages in order to restore them back to what they once were.
There are some additional Chaos Emerald battles involving Metal Sonic, Shadow, and Silver. These don’t add anything to the actual plot, but you do end up having to complete them to obtain the Chaos Emeralds to become Super Sonic, as well as unlock the final battle, which explains the entire plot and introduces a character that seems to have been tossed to the side since Sonic Adventures. Overall there’s only eighteen actual stages split up into nine Zones that span the career of the Sonic the Hedgehog franchise, though most being modern stages like Crisis City. Each Zone is split up into two acts as well, with act one being handled by the Sonic from the past, and the second act by the present day one, both handling much like the way the games actually were designed. As you progress through the game, the stages do become harder to complete, and even take much longer. But, there’s no real focus to get an S rank on these stages, or the boss fights, unless you happen to be an achievement or trophy junky.
Sonic Generations focuses more on the Rank of your time in the stage, as well as rings and whether or not you died in the round. Of course the higher the rank, the higher the score to buy power ups for your Sonic’s. You also get the chance to customize those power ups, and there’s plenty to choose from. Many of these end up being unlocked through natural game play, and collecting bonus red rings. These red rings are scattered about the game as five per act, forty five total per Sonic, pointing to a total of ninety additional challenge missions. These are not so bad, though some of them, such as the Doppleganger races, will definitely give old and new gamers alike a bit of a problem. But the more you complete, the more artwork you unlock, as well as the more abilities you can obtain. The same goes for the red rings that are scattered about the stages.
Obviously, there’s a good deal to do in the game. There’s a decent amount of levels you can play that seem close to the original concepts of previous games, you also have the additional collectibles, challenge missions, and boss battles. There’s something for everyone here given how the game is set up, and even fans of one generation’s Sonic and not the other will find mutual ground between the two styles after playing this title long enough. The only real problem to be had here is that, sometimes, the controls can seem a bit delayed. I found jumping to sometimes be a bit of a problem, and the delayed movement of the Sonics when starting to walk or run is something that feels a little extra exaggerated. Even the target reticle when the Sonic Jump Dash Attack can feel unresponsive and not target a creature or item that can be right in front of you. It’s irritation, but definitely not a game breaking issue. The only other element that can urk the listener is the character voice overs. None really feel bad or under-performed, but the cute and often squeekty voices is enough to make a sane Sonic fan cry with aggrivation, especially during the final level as I tried to figure out how to defeat the enemy.
One of the last things to look at for this day and age are the achievements and, honestly, they aren’t too bad. The worst are the four which require S Ranks in every Act of the game, though not boss battles or challenges. This one has a lot of people up and arms but given how Sonic games work, it’s pretty easy to earn these rankings after spending time familiarizing yourself with that specific Act. Other then that you have your typical few collectible based ones, story related achievements/trophies, as well as a few miner on-line ones dealing with ranks, and a bunch of other miscellanious ones such as clearning Green Hill Zone Act One in under a minute, which proves to be rather difficult this time around despite your familiarity with the level. It’s a nice balanced list that will make the people looking to boost their scores rather happy. But, even with this tacked onto the actual stages, the game still does end up being rather short, and if you’re generally good at Sonic titles, then this one may not even really last longer then a week to the dedicated gamer who has a couple hours free each day, or even every other day.
Overall, Sonic Generations is a title that wound up being well worth the money to experience. Long time fans of Sonic who crave the old side scrolling days, and even those who enjoy the modern approach will enjoy the game’s careful handling of the mascot. With some nice graphics that capture the vibrant world, as well as the darker chaotic stages, you can’t help but be visually taken by the similarities to old characters, as well as the modern ones. But, the voice overs do become really irritating, especially on the last stage, the controls seem to be a bit screwy, especially for modern Sonic, and the game’s length is just a little less then you would hope for at a near full retail price for on the game’s launch day, there’s still a decent amount of reasons holding the game back from being a top notch entry into the Sonic saga. But, despite those faults, this title is easily one of the best titles to come out for a home console in quite some time, and in the end makes for a fun experience fans of the blue hedgehog really shouldn’t pass up, even as a full blown purchase.
Physical review copy of this title provided by personal funds.