Sonic Generations was a game that I was both looking forward to and dreading. That may sound odd, but we’ve all had bad experiences with games we’d loved as children only to be sorely disappointed at their more modern renditions. The curse of bad re-releases has been broken by Sonic Generations, which is every bit as fun as I remembered.
True to their word, the designers of Sonic Generations had taken some of the old favorite levels from games past, redid them, and stuck them into Generations. Despite this, the game didn’t feel gimmicky or like a repeat of past games at all. There was a slight dejavu feeling with many of the levels, with an ‘a-ah!’ moment at the end when the name of the level was revealed.
The levels weren’t simply picked up and placed into Sonic Generations either. Every level had a nice makeover. Graphics had been updated to modern standards regardless of the era of the level. Controls were also modified, making gameplay smooth and seamless, especially when jumping between 2D and 3D levels. Each playable level was available to play in 2D mode or 3D mode. Mastery of both was necessary, however, for players to continue through the game. If you didn’t beat versions of the level, the chance was high that you missed a necessary item to unlock further stages in the game.
But it wasn’t just the levels that you had to be able to navigate and complete. Sonic, while on the search for his friends which have been captured, needs to be able to navigate a world drained of color. If the design looks suspiciously similar to a level itself, that’s because it is one. Sonic fans will find this especially fun. The design is simple enough not to have players new to Sonic bashing their keyboards in frustration or throwing their controllers half way across the room. Of course there is always the humiliating possibility of missing key components to advancement that are hidden in plain sight. Moving through the level will unlock more levels, challenges, bosses, secrets, achievements and more.
Sonic Generations is a great game that doesn’t overdo the nostalgia. If anything it is a tribute to Sonic in his many forms and incarnations, his friends and enemies, everything that worked and the few games that just weren’t up to par. Unlocked songs can be anything from the latest sonic game to the oft forgot Sonic Pinball. A favorite throughout the Sonic Generations game were comments by Sonic and his friends that harked back to previous games and the sense of dejavu. And, despite everything, the storyline wasn’t as gimmicky as it could have been. The mysterious dark smoky … thing … that attacks has been ripping holes in time which many, okay, all, of your friends have fallen through. Completing each level not only saves your friends, but your super speeds also repair the rift in time in the process!
Sonic Generations is the perfect game to break out your USB controller, especially if you’ve traditionally played Sonic on any one of the various consols he’s been featured on. This is a great game that can be enjoyed by people of all ages. Whether you’ve been a fan of everyone’s favorite hedgehog from the beginning or this is your first encounter with Sonic, you’ll never want to put down the controller.