4. Dreamcast Era
Now that you've beaten the Genesis Era of the game, it's time to take a trip back to the Dreamcast days, the beginning of Modern Sonic as we know him. Instead of seeing Act 2 stages as "classic stages reworked", it will now be the other way around; Act 1 will take ideas from the originals and implement them into a "Classic" style of level. The first level comes from Sonic Adventure, the first truly 3D Sonic title.
Sonic Generations | Act Missions (S Rank)
Speed Highway Zone
Just like the original, there are lots of pits in this level, so be careful when jumping over any gap that you aren't familiar with yet. There are a few different paths leading up to a rocket that takes you to the second portion of the level; from there, it's also a bit difficult to point out where the high and low paths start, but the level isn't difficult to warrant any kind of special advice. Getting an S Rank should be very much within your grasp as long as you don't die during your run.
Similar to Act 2, there are a lot more places to die in this level than you've seen before. Getting an S Rank boils down to knowing the level and not dying, but you can still manage to get one on your first time through.
After finishing both Acts, Cream the Rabbit, and her pet Chao named Cheese, will be freed next.
City Escape Zone
This level fortunately gives you a break on the pitfalls, but replaces that hazard with the infamous GUN truck from Sonic Adventure 2. Aside from trying to avoid being run over by the GUN crew, the first Act might even be considered easier than Speed Highway Zone's first Act.
Act 2 is same in regards to bottomless pits; there are far less of them, and the platforming itself is very simple to do. The only thing that should be barring you from an S Rank is the accidental slip into the abyss, costing you your run, but replaying the level wouldn't take much time to do anyway.
Rouge the Bat is up next on the list of ex-statues. This master thief must have some good information about Red Star Rings in the stage that you may have missed.
Seaside Hill Zone
Act 1 of Seaside Hill Zone is fairly expansive, with multiple different paths that you might switch between at an instant. The S Rank is easy to get regardless of this, as all of the paths are still very quick.
Act 2 feels a lot more open than any other level has so far. Once you come across a three-way fork in the path, predated by an alternating signal that switches between yellow and green, time your move wisely so you can go with whichever path you choose. The yellow path, if you drive to the left of the final ramp, can net you a nice Red Star Ring, so you might want to go that way first. The S Rank restrictions are very loose, and you should get it without any snags.
Once you've cleared Seaside Hill Zone, the gang will realize a little bit more of the situation they're in, as well as release Espio from his stone prison. The ninja will warn you to keep on your toes.
Sonic Generations | Boss Battles (S Rank)
Shadow the Hedgehog
Mimicking a scene from Sonic Adventure 2 is this fight against Shadow, who debuted in the same game. To win, you just have to collect two of the energy cores moving around the stage before Shadow gets two of them himself. Once that happens, you'll be chasing Shadow on a much more flat piece of terrain. Run into meteors to send pieces of them at Shadow to slow him down, and then stay on his tail to drain rings from him until he runs out. It's a very easy battle, and you'll probably S Rank it unless Shadow gets charged up before you do.
The differences in Hard mode are pretty obvious when you start the level up; reaching the fully charged state now requires three energy cores, and Shadow will be a a lot better at reaching them than before. Despite this, the time bonus is so crazy that you'll easily get the 50,000 points necessary for an S Rank even if Shadow gets to use his fully charged attack. If he does so, all you have to do is dodge his Chaos Spears and do the same for a Chaos Control attack. It's very easy to dodge everything.
After defeating Shadow, you'll get the yellow Chaos Emerald, which just so happens to be the fourth one. At least he knows where it is now.
This boss battle is super, super simple. Perfect Chaos can only withstand four hits on Normal difficulty, and the first three are performed by just jumping around chunks of the road and boosting across stretches of water. Once you land the third attack, the background music will change from a slight remix of Open Your Heart to the music that plays at the end of the original battle in Sonic Adventure. All that's left to do now is jump across a few more pieces of the city and make it to the top of Perfect Chaos, and perform one last homing attack to do him in. Again, S Ranks, aren't necessary, but you shouldn't be surprised if you get this one without trying.
Perfect Chaos still takes just four hits to defeat on Hard, and the fight really isn't that different, especially since Perfect Chaos doesn't really have any noticeable attack patterns. For some reason, it felt like I was running out of boost a lot faster on Hard than on Normal, so if this happens to you, the only real threat barring you from an S Rank is falling into the water below.
After defeating Chaos, the blue Chaos Emerald will be bestowed upon you for your efforts, and the last three Zones will open up for you to explore. The Time Eater will also briefly appear, and will react quite negatively to the energy given off by one of the remaining frozen Chaos Emeralds.
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