Sonic the Hedgehog is one of the top 3, most well-known and most respected, video game characters. His career is somewhat of a rocky roller coaster ever since his game mechanics were introduced to 3D gameplay. He's had bright games, bad games, fantastic classics, but then... he had... Sonic the Hedgehog (Sonic 06 or Sonic Next Gen for short
Sonic 06 has been ranked up at a pretty high spot for the Hall of Shame being "one of the Worst Video Games of All-Time", and has been blessed with the title, "Sonic's lowest point in his career". This game caused such a fiasco with the franchise that it was being considered as the next E.T. Extra Terrestrial video game crash for the next gen, and the chopping block of Sonic's successful career. The revival has been a very brutal one for the poor blue hedgehog but he is now in a good place once again (thank you Sonic Generations
The game had somewhat released most of Sonic's fans out of their supportive lust for his games and had begun to wise up, but it also completely destroyed Sonic's credibility as the speediest and coolest thing alive. Everything from his iconic abilities to his simplistic gameplay was truly torn apart by this "game". It had intense hype before its release showing cool gameplay, great graphics, new characters and, most importantly, speed. All of which were not present in the final product under the excuse that, "It's the fans fault we didn't fix the game." One of the worst scapegoat excuses in the gaming industry, which only made the Sonic Team look even worse after the aftermath of this game.
But enough about the past. Development history, publishing deadlines and what coulda/shoulda/woulda happened is not what we, as gamers, should put pressure on ourselves in order to enjoy a game, which is what the 2% of people who actually like this game do. In reality, all that could have possibly gone wrong with Sonic, goes HORRIBLY WRONG!!!
Be warned, this review is very long and deep
. I have sunk in 24 hours, earned every achievement, played it twice and am a great fan of Sonic. There will be no sugar coating or call outs left unnoticed! If you're on the bus, subway, tucked up in bed and need a good or funny read, get cosy and put those glasses on! Let's begin.THE PLOT: (0/10) "A black hole of a disaster"
This story breaks up into 3 different perspectives, all of which need to be seen in order to make sense of what is going on with the plot. Much like the Sonic Adventure games, each main character has their own story to tell, in this case, Sonic, Shadow and Silver. This will not be spoiler free, but at the same time, the spoilers are really not worth censoring as the story is a horrendous mess. Take my word for it and have a look. You won't cry yourself to sleep.Sonic's Campaign:
This game takes place in a town called Soleanna (inspired by Venice
), which lives under the fear of a destructive God bringing devastation to their world. It is run by a Princess known as Elise, the 3rd, who is a vessel of half of the destructive god's soul, named Iblis. The story begins during a ceremony to celebrate the God Solaris but before it can begin, the town is attacked by Dr. Eggman and his mechs. He wants to cease control of the God by using Princes Elise as a piece of the puzzle, who holds half of the soul of Solaris. Before that can happen, Sonic speeds into the action to whisk the Princess away to safety whilst at the same time taunting the doctor with his cheekiness and attitude.
Once they escape, Eggman immediately recaptures the Princess again and this time gets away with it. Sonic, rather than using his speed to defeat Eggman, simply watches the two drive away very slowly... umm... yeah. Sonic decides to wait until the next day (asshole
) to go save the Princess; going on a series of adventures to save her. Whilst Sonic does this, he always makes the most questionable to the down right retarded of decisions, where he will chase Eggman on foot knowing that he won't catch up with them and in the end ends up NOT CATCHING THEM!! This happens many times in his story and sometimes there isn't even an objective for why Sonic and his friends are even playing some of the stages!
When Sonic finally catches up to Eggman, he rescues the Princess again, only to allow her to be captured again. This is pretty much the plot in Sonic's campaign. He rescues Princess Peach-I mean Elise, as much as he can until he finally gets her to safety in the end. THE END... How original!Shadow's Campaign:
Shadow works for GUN (the people who have been trying to kill him throughout his life...
) and is on a mission to recover a "Scepter of Darkness" for GUN... Upon doing this he accidentally shatters the Scepter and releases the other half of the soul of Solaris (the evil god
) known as Mephiles, a really bad recolour of Shadow... Shadow and his partner, Rouge, get exiled into the future by Mephiles as he has the power to travel them through time. The future is a hell hole with nothing but destruction; no hope or life. Shadow manages to escape from the future by going back to the present, with the help of chaos emeralds which he has to find.
He encounters Silver, whose aim is to take out Iblis, (the other half
) and they both head back to the point in time of which Solaris split in two so Shadow can reseal Mephiles and Silver can seal Iblis. Shadow manages to do it but then decides to leave behind the Scepter before going back to the present time period, despite the fact that if he took it with him, Mephiles would never exist in the future!!! * head slap* IDIOT!!!
So being the complete twat he is, Shadow has to fight Mephiles again and fails to defeat him!... THE END, for f*** sake...Silver's Campaign:
Silver is a psychokinetic hedgehog, who is born in the far future of the Sonic universe. He lives in a time period with Blaze the Cat (from Sonic Rush
), where hope, life and safety is non existent because of the evil creature that has risen from the past, known as Iblis (half of the evil god Solaris, which Elise sealed inside of her...
). Silver meets Mephiles (the other half of Solaris
) because Shadow failed to keep him sealed, who offers to take him back in time to kill Sonic, convincing Silver that Sonic is the reason Iblis exists.
When he heads to Soleanna, he is harassed by Amy Rose, who mistakes him for Sonic, making him lose Sonic from sight. Amy feeling guilty, assists Silver in finding who he was looking for by making him help her find Sonic first... She takes you through a pointless stage because she "senses" Sonic's presence. Yet he isn't there...!
Then Silver meets Shadow, and Shadow warns him of Mephiles. They both travel back to the time period before Solaris split apart, using chaos control. He finds out that Princess Elise is the vessel of Iblis and can only be summoned if Elise cries! That means she cannot cry with laughter, happiness, hay fever, or grief!!... Is it me or is this going slightly out of the suspension of disbelief?
Sonic and Silver later join forces to rescue the Princess. They create a time portal so Sonic can head back at an earlier point to save the Princess, whilst Silver goes back to the future, which is still in complete travesty. That means Sonic FAILED to rescue the Princess!!! Convinced that Sonic stopped Iblis, Silver fights Iblis again?! Wait, WHAAAT?!?!?
*sigh*...So Silver defeats Iblis and decides to seal Iblis inside of him and acts as the new vessel for Elise, who clearly doesn't survive for another 300 years. Oh, and remember that I mentioned Blaze being in Silver's story? Yeah... Her role only comes in at the end when she sacrifices herself for Silver. He is rejected by Iblis's soul but accepts Blaze as a vessel. Once done, she disappears into "a" dimension and Silver is left with a bitter sweet ending. THE END!!The Final Climax:
After Shadow fails to defeat Mephiles, Mephiles just decides to go and teleport to Sonic who is with Elise and literally murders him!! Sonic the Hedgehog dies!! The crocodile tears and screams of grief are forced as hell by Elise's voice actor which makes you laugh and bang your head on the table. Mephiles managed to force Elise to cry thus summoning Iblis from her, which he reforms himself by recreating his original form, Solaris. Because Solaris is a dick, he turns the world into a void of nothingness and decides he wants to wipe out all time and universes. All of the characters in the game manage to end up in the same area, including Silver who killed Iblis by sacrificing Blaze, yet... IBLIS IS STILL ALIVE AND BLAZE IS NOW DEAD!!! What the f*** happened to her then?! Wasn't she supposed to be brought back to life due to the circumstances of altering the past?! Uhh... They regroup and decide to get the chaos emeralds to revive Sonic... by overcoming the worst final level ever introduced in the Sonic franchise, but I digress.
Once all of them have been collected, Elise calls upon the emeralds in the mellowest dramatic way ever to save Sonic, and with success, he comes back to life as Super Sonic. Sonic then shares his powers with Shadow and Silver, all engaging in a final boss fight against Solaris. Once defeated, Solaris turns into the form of a candle and is displayed in the hands of Elise. Elise somehow predicts that all of the time period of which Solaris existed will be reversed back to when he didn't exist, meaning that the entire game is ret-conned (a.k.a. erased as if the game never happened
). The candle is blown out and we head back to the very beginning of the game, where Soleanna is celebrating the festival of now NOT Solaris... *smashing head on the table violently*
That means that they should have gone back to the time period before they began experimenting on Solaris, where they then couldn't do anything with him because he no longer exists! Sonic Team, however doesn't give a single s**t so let's just try to ret-con LOGIC!!!! Sonic turns up to the event to spectate unseen, whilst him and Elise sense each other's presence as a familiar memory.
THE... COMPLETE... END...
The entire story is comprised of 10 rejects of society who should never be allowed to contribute to the world population. Each of the hedgehogs' individual stories don't link together which end up creating very large plot holes for the audience, and including time travelling which isn't exactly handled with care or planning here. If you think deep enough into the entire fiasco of time travelling you can easily create time paradoxes of which altering the past can ultimately affect their future of themselves time travelling in the first place, meaning that time never moves forward, except this logic is completely ignored.
What you have as a whole is a story that fails to engage you into a serious concept, a bad cast who don't know what's going on, and a super villain, who can time travel but is too idiotic to consider using that to his advantage! But these problems are not the main error of the story, OOOOOOOOH no... There is the infamous romance plot that butchers all the credibility of Sonic and his reputation. It isn't easy to forget about it once you see it for yourself...The horrible romance between Sonic and Elise:
Once you turn on the game for the first time, you are introduced to the opening CGI cutscene of Sonic coming in to rescue Princess Elise from Dr. Eggman. He's his cocky, confident and silly self as usual and takes the serious situation into a fun little game. Once the CGI cinematic is over, you are watching the continuation of the scene with the in-game graphics. Sonic is blocked off by Eggman's mechs and puts down the Princess to destroy them. As his back is turned the Princess is captured by the Egg Carrier (Eggman's ship
). Rather than simply using his speed to go after her, he simply lets Eggman drive away after acting out a Romeo and Juliet balcony scenario with the Princess. Once you have seen this you will know immediately that something is very wrong.
What started off as a "silly stranger meets tame stranger," has now turned into a somewhat committed relationship within the first minute! There is no build up or reason for it to exist. To make matters even worse, during the course of Mario-I mean Sonic's story, Sonic and Elise begin to blossom a love affair by playing lovey-dovey flirt tennis. The persona of Sonic we would all expect has disappeared and been replaced by a bland, committed and f***ing stupid Mario clone who's only goal is to rescue the Princess and never ask why the hell he didn't just run away with her rather than watch her being kidnapped again. What makes the unrealistic approach unbearable is the horrific voice acting these two characters deliver as they speak to each other, but I digress again, I will tell you about the voice acting soon enough.
The story will have a few cutscenes devoted to the two of them having an innocent romantic bond with a "too perfect" setting around them trying to force you to invest in their relationship, convinced that you believe that you know what is going on. But to make matters even worse worse (this isn't a double negative
) is that you think something is about to happen between the two, until the climax is completely wasted or thrown back in your face to say, "Well, we ran out of ideas to add to this abysmal fan-fiction story." The entire affair between the two is like this!
The game will magically throw in a slice of fan-fictional romance as if it was missing a lot of chapters to link the story together, and then it will try to forget it ever happened as if the 13 year old teenage girl author didn't intend on letting you see more. Her vision of Elise is her in real life, making her own OC for the Sonic universe only to make the most terrible contribution to the roster. This however is just a crazy theory, but there could be another. Maybe the director of this game had a daughter who had a crush on Sonic and wanted her to star in the game with him, so he didn't think about the repercussions and thought, "I could get away with this because I'm the boss and my daughter will love me even more!"...
But here's the juicy bit. To make matters even worse worse worse (thats how serious this is
), later on when Sonic dies, the Princess scars you with a few words as she speaks to Sonic, "Come back to me...To us!", followed by a kiss. *shivers violently* The credibility of Sonic the Hedgehog is gone... That is until after Sonic, Shadow and Silver defeat Solaris. Solaris turns into a harmless candle in the hands of Elise, which if blown out, all of the story will be reversed back to the beginning without Solaris existing, but, this will also wipe out all memory of Sonic and Elise encountering each other. A conclusion like this is an opportunity to have a sad but touching ending for the two, but rather than the two pouring their love for each other, Elise bitches "I don't care what happens to the world!"...
...But to make matters the worst of them all, Sonic replies, "Just smile! :D"
The romance between the two almost disappears!! What the hell did we just sit through!? As part of the ending credits we have the artist Akon (a perverted wanker
) singing a song about how Sonic and Elise love each other. Muting the TV won't help you as you watch the scenes of the two, so you have to pull the plug out of the wall, or just skip with the Start button... Lol.
I know I sound like I'm kicking a dead horse but I am one of those people that despises seeing a poor attempt at a romance plot. Twilight was bad enough but this is defiantly another example.
I'm supportive of mixed species (with human-like anatomy
) romances but only if it is done correctly. You could have a male human and... let's say a dragon female with enough similar humanoid attributes to make it work between the two, but there needs to be a reasonable explanation and very careful pacing for it to be seen as a great match, without otherwise inevitably alienating the audience. You have to have plenty of social history of the two together, backstory and realistic logic to go with the love affair to make a sensible bond, and you cannot, I repeat, CANNOT throw the plot device in there out of nowhere! It will otherwise look like the author made the creature character as nothing but a fetish as he/she wanks over the idea, clearly having no experience with relationships or love him/herself (this is why MLP:FiM is evil and dA is a scary place to go
Would you really expect a 5ft. 7 human and a 3 ft. blue furry hedgehog with a bobble-head, huge hands and feet to be a perfect match if they are just thrown in a closet and expected to..? *shivers violently*. This forced romance between the two has been joked about all over the internet and even critics have considered naming the whole affair beastiality! Princess Elise has been rated the worst Sonic character ever and I couldn't be more honest, she deserves it!! She doesn't do anything other than act as this awkward romance plot devise which comes and goes as if it were a fly pestering you! There is no character development of her, and this is coming from a character designer/developer!!
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------GAMEPLAY: (1/10) "The epitome of broken"
The main objective in Sonic 06 is to get to the goal ring at the end of every level. You accumulate points by defeating enemies, collecting rings and finishing the level with a fast time. Death during gameplay resets your numbers back to zero which usually estimates an inevitable failure for an S-rank. This has always been the way of Sonic's scoring system, except this game has designed the stages in a mixed bag of ways that the requirements to achieve good scores never stay consistent. You could S rank by fighting enemies alone, disregarding time and rings or you could be racing to the finish really fast alone, etc.
To add to the list of problems, there are many ways to sequence break (taking unintended bypasses or glitchy shortcuts
) to practically skip an entire 6 minutes of your time, making the platforming futile!! There is a charm to this, getting revenge on the game's bad programming but at the same time, this IS a requirement you will be abusing to ensure you win and avoid the broken level designs which don't function correctly. This game also utilises an auto-save feature which doesn't work unless you complete an Act Stage, meaning that a game over can reset all of your Town Mission progress and hub world progression. Luckily you can manually save just before you enter an Act Stage with a character (I highly suggest you do this to save a ton of torment
). Which raises the topic, to add to the table of farts, the character's gameplay styles.Sonic the Hedgehog:
Sonic's traditional form of attacking and moving have been clustered with glitchy, broken and retarded gameplay mechanics. For starters, Sonic cannot hurt enemies by jumping into them anymore, he has no momentum after using the homing attack, he cannot cancel out of his spin-dash and the most insulting of his abilities, is that his speed has been aggressively reduced.
Sonic, though unlike the other characters, has a special gimmick. He can purchase "Gems" which colour his shoes into those of the 7 chaos emeralds, giving him unique special abilities during his gameplay. There is a meter that Sonic has which is designed to limit his use of them, well... would be if the freaking meter was coded into the game!! Sonic's gems were supposed to be limited (read the case book
) meaning that you can abuse his gem upgrades as much as you please!! I'm serious!!The Gems:Red
: The red gem gives Sonic the ability to slow down time. Simply holding the RT all the way through the stage with this gives Sonic a hilariously broken time bonus.Blue:
This gem acts the same way as a booster pad would. It accelerates Sonic at his top speed but with barely any control. This is very useful in the huge hub worlds but is otherwise a death wish being used in the stages.Green:
Sonic does a break-dance summoning a twister attack which scratches off a bit of enemy health... Not exactly a very useful gem.Yellow:
This summons an electric shield which acts as the ring magnet ability like every Sonic game to date. Except whilst the shield is supposed to protect you from taking damage at least once, there's no hitstun or post-hit invulnerability period, meaning landing on harmful hazards will still make you lose your rings.White:
This lets Sonic levitate on the spot. Umm... That's it?!Light Blue:
This gem acts like a hook shot from the Legend of Zelda series. You aim where you want to fire it and you are pulled to that location. The hilarious thing about this is that Sonic, rather than being taken to the location, is torpedoed above the gem's landing spot which sends him flying above the map. This gem is a beauty for sequence breaking at the speed of light but handles like a dangerous pet. It can be your best friend or it can kill you.Purple:
This gem is the game-breaker for Sonic. When holding down the RT he turns mini, because... reasons? He can double jump at the same time, except the second jump never registers as the final jump allowing Sonic to jump infinitely beyond places he isn't meant to go. This gem becomes your best friend when you want to skip inevitable death sequences that are badly designed.Sonic carrying Elise:
In 2 levels of the game, Sonic will be holding Elise in his arms. During this Sonic is unable to use his gems, spin-dash, bounce attack or run fast. That is because Elise gives Sonic the ability to summon a mystical shield bubble which allows him to walk on water and sand (sand that was never clipped as terrain...
). It is relatively harmless as these stages leave many unintended short cuts for you to take when the camera tries to focus you away from them, and if you spam the RT you can extend your walking distance by 3x.The snowboarding sections:
Sonic thankfully only goes through 2 sequences of snowboarding, because this gameplay mechanic is the most broken in the game! Like the Sonic Adventure games and even any snowboarder, you can only go down slopes and hills which build your momentum up. These sections, however, have no physics whatsoever, meaning that Sonic can snowboard up any form of land like he's riding a bicycle without a tyre. To make matters even worse worse worse worse (go with me here
), Sonic's controls lock when you try to control him. He can break at a dead stop and you will be unable to control him. This makes the giant snowball chase in White Acropolis almost impossible to complete as Sonic will decide to stop dead so he can be crushed into the snow. The forsaken Mach-Speed sections:
During the last section of 4 stages, Sonic undergoes an on-rails sprint to the goal ring. During this Sonic is unable to stop, he cannot be steered when he is airborne, and he is as fragile as Justin Beiber's asshole! If he so much touches ANYTHING that has collision detection or a single polygon frame of coding, he will take damage and have no chance to recover. Slam into a flat wall? Sonic will not come off of it and will forever trip into the wall counting as a death.
The worst of them by far goes to the stage Crisis City. You are being chased by a tornado that is farting cars down like a meteor shower. The cars shatter into many chunks of debris where even touching a crumb of it can hurt you. In addition, there are boxes and wreckage placed on the road he runs down, which, if shattered by any activity, can still hurt you!! To add to the cherry on top of the cake, the camera f***ing betrays you when you play this section as it leaves you speeding off, ahead unable to predict any obstacles you may run into and has the power to invert your controls!!
In all, Sonic's gameplay is broken up the backside, but it by far the funnest and funniest character to play as. If it weren't for the debug gems he wields, his levels would be intense torture. S-ranking his levels are the easiest of the bunch with the power of his gems, aside from two levels that are beyond help *cough* Crisis City *cough* Kingdom Valley *cough*.Shadow the Hedgehog:
Shadow had always been a clone of Sonic's gameplay. Picture Sonic's gameplay in this game but take away the speed, gems, bounce and fun. Shadow's stages are focused on combat where he takes on waves upon waves of enemies before he is allowed to continue on with his stage. His homing attack has further range than Sonic's and rather than hitting one enemy to another, he attacks enemies by doing a series of karate moves as he floats. His gameplay style and high enemy spawns drastically slow down any fun that can be had with him. Do you remember the failing game named "Shadow the Hedgehog"? Do you remember his forced vehicles he was designed to rely on? Guess what... THEY'RE IN THIS GAME!!!!Shadow's vehicles:The Buggy:
The buggy is very rarely a requirement needed to complete an objective. It fires missiles directly in front of the car's view and can ram into watch towers like a tank. This vehicle also has a bad habit of getting permanently stuck into walls which after so long causes the vehicle to destroy itself, which makes one particular mission the most frustrating experience you will ever encounter in this game.The Motorbike:
This bike is only needed in 2 sections of the game. It speeds off very fast and fires a lot of rounds. Its handling is ridiculously sensitive which can cause you to steer off of the road, into a wall or to your death. You will be frightened every time you drive this horrible thing.The Hovercraft:
The hovercraft will become your worst nightmare if you plan on speeding on ahead like you would playing a Sonic game... This vehicle is the reason why people rage quit a lot as Shadow. If his vehicles explodes or flips over (which is easy to do because of terrain levels
), Shadow dies. Kingdom Valley, for one, tests your sanity as Shadow needs to avoid being crushed by the towers collapsing, except the camera, AGAIN, betrays you!!The Hand-Glider:
This vehicle acts more of an on-rails shooter section for Shadow. It aim-locks its aim onto enemies, making this vehicle the best one of the bunch. Because his gliding sections have no collision detection, Shadow can simply pass through objects! But these aren't the reasons why this vehicle is the best... You can literally survive these sections by doing squat!! It's one of those classic "Luigi wins by doing absolutely nothing!" moments.
Shadow's gameplay is somewhat in the middle of the best and worst but it still sucks! His vehicles which are commonly placed around his stages are 98% of the time not required to best an S-rank or beat the level. He is ultimately the slower and more depressing form of Sonic... But he does deliver the best voice in the game at least.Silver the Hedgehog:
Now this character has a rather interesting concept. He is a white hedgehog with psychic abilities, using his mental energy to move obstacles in his way, as well as fly. He is quite a powerful force in the Sonic universe and could be fantasised as a cheap but, yet amazingly, fun character. I could very much imagine Saints Row's insurance fraud with Silver, lol, but instead what we get is an extremely slow paced platforming puzzle-solving hedgehog, who relies on the physics of the game engine to get anything done, and I'm going to spoil it for you now... his controls are dysfunctional!
He uses his psychic powers to pick up obstacles and throw them at enemies, except his aim decides where it wants them to go for you, with the addition of your collection of objects bouncing off of each other rather than throwing them. In his CGI cutscene of him speeding off at Sonic speed levels through levitating, he never does that again in the entire game. You can float by holding A whilst airborne (mashing A extends your distance by more several feet
Silver doesn't come with any gimmicks other than to solve puzzles, defeat enemies, who are guarding doors and float around... until you get to the most infamous puzzle known as 'The Ball Puzzle'. Luckily, Silver is rather broken and can combine his dash and attack buttons to clip through walls which makes time wasting an easy workaround. He can also get atop objects and lift himself up on top of them when combining it with absent collision detection in walls/doors or breaking his levitating abilities; he can easily sequence break his levels for an easy S-rank. The Amigos / side characters:
The friends of the Sonic group come in to dip their feet into the action, assisting the main trio to overcome stages, trails and puzzles. They don't intrude too much into the trio's gameplay but unlike the main 3, these characters are the most unenjoyable, broken and slapped-in last minute additions in this game! Miles "Tails" Prower:
Tails borrows the same gameplay mechanics from Sonic Adventure where he can fly very fast, but that's about it. Despite being able to catch up with the fastest thing alive... his ground speed has been degraded to a snail's pace, his tails make wisping whooshy noises which irritate the hell out of you and he cannot attack with his tails anymore, instead uses dummy ring boxes which act as ranged bombs. When attacking on the ground, Tails leaves himself vulnerable by standing still whilst the camera has an epileptic fit switching from first-person to third-person perspective making it almost impossible to aim shots with the dummy rings. In tradition Tails can fly fast and naturally tires out after a while, except rather than gently descend down, he plummets ending all momentum moving forward which tends to cause cheap deaths for him. There is nothing fun about playing as him and you will not be seeing him much at all - thankfully!Knuckles the Echidna:
Knuckles has always been known for power, gliding and climbing. Except his attacks were never coded to harm enemies so he just clips through them, he has more weight when he glides making you feel like he is pregnant which can make it easy to miss a long jump, and he has one major issue which urinates on Knuckles' legacy... He cannot jump off of the walls he climbs onto! He gets stuck practically 80% of the time and needs to either climb down to his feet or clip through a wall to get off!! He is completely broken but isn't required for anything crucial so you won't be suffering with him for long.Rouge the Whore-I mean Bat:
For some reason, this character of Sonic has been hyper sexualised to levels beyond creepiness, going from femme fatale to skanky tart. She attacks in the same form as Tails by using bombs except her bombs don't scatter and can throw several of them at once to take out the big enemies with ease. Rouge even has the courtesy of duplicating her breastplate as she takes it off to plant as a wall mine which kills all enemies in the radius. Her gliding is very smooth and holds little gravity when making it across long distances, however, she suffers from the same problem as Knuckles but is FAAAAAAAAR worse! She doesn't come off of the walls she climbs onto no matter what. She would rather be humping the damn obstacle than let you take control of her! ...Bloody bitch...E123 Omega:
This character is the fastest one out of all of them... yes... he is. His form of combat is to fire rounds as he jumps which homes in on enemies. He also has an ability to hover by holding down the A button as he is airborne, but spamming the button instead will cancel all gravitational pull and he can basically levitate and sequence break his way to the finish line and go into areas his isn't meant to. Lol. His character is the second most fun out of the roster.Blaze the Cat:
Yep. Blaze is in this game, despite her historical background living in a different dimension to Sonic's world... Ahem! Anyways, she acts as the nursery assistant, I mean, sidekick for Silver. Her gameplay is probably the cleanest of all the playable characters. She runs the speed of Sonic, she can perform the homing attack very quickly and can double jump smoothly. Her homing attack does spiral out of control at times but otherwise is a controllable force. You can only play as her 3 times during Silver's campaign, which... bites.Amy Rose:
Amy bloody Rose... Amy has always had the ability to jump very high and thus she still comes with that trait but then she also has a double jump which cancels all momentum and breaks all flow of moving in any direction other than 2 feet. She runs at the speed rate of constipated s**t coming out of your arse and has been utterly downgraded from a poor character in Sonic Adventure to a truly useless soul. Her Piko hammer, which has been her close quarter weapon by trade, has been nurfed to the point where the size of it is that of a lunchbox and if you intend to land a hit to defeat your enemies, you have to literally be inside of them!! She can also turn invisible by holding down X because... reasons, which serves no purpose in the game at all... Sonic Team must have done this on purpose as if to show that they want everyone to REALLY hate her character as much as they do... and you know what, they did a good job of accomplishing that.
Her roles come into effect on 1 Town Mission and 2 stages, all of which are painfully broken.The Hub world:
Like Sonic Adventure 1, this game brought back the hub world for Sonic 06 with a few major differences. It's boring, colourless, gigantic, unpopulated and has a shop. When you play each of the trio's campaign, they will go back to the hub world after completing an Act Stage. The NPCs, who don't give a single toss about the Princess being kidnapped by Eggman, have information the characters need in order to unlock the next Act, which includes purchasing new combat moves and upgrades from the shop.
This game also has a total of 50 Town Missions for you to discover around the hub world of Soleanna, all of which serve absolutely no plot to the story in any way or form. You can walk a dog, do a math quiz, go through Superman 64 rings or even play hide and seek with children. They sound silly and worth a time kill, until you realise they are immensely boring... and come with the number 1 worst problem with this game!! All the f***ing loading screens!!The WORST loading times in gaming history:
This, without a doubt, is THE game breaker and the main problem that eliminates any interest in wanting to play this game. The fother mucking loading times!!
These can last up to 35 seconds long if you don't install the game onto your HHD! To make it more punishing for you, you are going to have to expect 5 of these, minimum, in any Act Stage you play on as the stages cut themselves into separate sections. These stages, however, are NOTHING compared to the Town Missions! During the Hub world in Soleanna, there are NPCs which have blue chat symbols above their heads displaying a side mission for you. Let’s take an example here from a counting puzzle for Sonic.
STEP 1) You confirm that you want to do the mission,
STEP 2) 15-30 seconds loading...
STEP 3) The guy tells you the task you need to complete,
STEP 4) 15-30 seconds loading...
STEP 5) He asks you a question, you have to confirm that you know the answer,
STEP 6) 15-30 seconds loading...
STEP 7) You answer the question
STEP 8) 15-30 seconds loading...
STEP 9) The guy tells you your answer is correct,
STEP 10) 15-30 seconds loading...
STEP 11) Repeat steps 5 to 10 about 5 times!!
STEP 36) You get the results screen
STEP 37) 15-30 seconds loading back to the Hub World...
...This Town Mission alone has a grand total of 17 loading screens which come to an estimated total of 4m 15s - 8m 30s worth of waiting! If, at any point, you get the answer wrong, you fail the mission and will have to sit through all of those loading screens again!! Missions that can last as long as 1 single second to complete has you sitting through at minimum 1-2:30 minutes of loading!!
The really unusual thing is that the CGI cutscenes load immediately without any form of waiting, as if the game is built around loading just those, then having to fuss around removing them remembering that it has to load the game data instead.
These loading screens will break you. If you don't have anything to do in the meantime, you won't be able to scratch the feeling of time wasting off of you. The feeling or necessity of adaptation will not happen here, no matter how long you play this game.
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------VOICE ACTING: (1/10) "Kill meeeeeee!!!"
The voice actors suffer from the 4-Kids disease where their emotional emphasis constantly changes perspective as if they are talking to a baby/toddler at the camera, but then in the same sentence snap back to their own perspective. Need convincing?
For an example, Silver delivers one believable and realistic line to Sonic as he defeats him, "Is this a joke? How can someone like you cause the destruction of our world?" His attitude is serious yet astounded by Sonic's harmless behaviour. Sonic replies, "What are you talking about?", but then Silver's emphasis changes into a whiney spoilt teenage bitch as he dialogues, "It doesn't matter".
Much like the Sonic Adventure games, the lip syncing in not accustom to the English voice acting. The characters will mime empty words of nothingness when their dialogue has ended and fail to move their mouths when they are talking!!
The squad of characters all love to point out the very obvious ("A chaos emerald! You found one!" when they've been holding it for freaking ages!
) encase you are beyond the levels of mentally retarded, and point out the most idiotic of things ("That tornado's carrying a car" when the tornado is practically vomiting vehicles up the arse
)! There is also a sense of absence when the characters talk as if their pals are right beside them but, in all fact, are not there at all... You can't help but feel sorry for the poor bastards.
Like I said earlier, the romance between Sonic and Elise is cringe-worthy as all hell. Elise's emotions are this horny, yet mind-numbingly boring, hormone bounce that throws her emotions everywhere in serious situations with Sonic, whilst Sonic on the other hand acts like he doesn't know what the hell is going on. He asks no questions and walks around like he just wants to retire from his job, or wants to go home and play on his Xbox. Lol. There is no excuse for dreadful voice acting, no matter how overrated or upper-class the actors are. Elise's voice actor by far delivered the worst job!!
The clumsiest voice actor of them all is the Tac-Com GUN Trooper communicating with Shadow and Rogue. He isn't reading his script correctly when you see the subtitles, he is pronouncing sentences with the incorrect punctuation, and to make matters even worse worse worse worse worse (I'm damn serious
) there is even an outtake that is left in as the final dialogue where he misreads the script and has to say it again!! A polite and well deserving face-punch goes to the audio editor of this game!
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------MUSIC / SOUND: (6/10) "Good!"
Wait wait... What!? Something good about this game!? Well yes. One thing this game does deserve credit for is the nice soundtrack. Sonic has nearly always had a great playlist to go with his games and doesn't disappoint with this game. The tracks are fitting with the stages and you can't really imagine the stages without their original pieces playing side it. Quite a lot of songs, of course, are forgettable but they aren't as forgettable as you might assume if you hear them. It's the kind of forgettable type where if you imagined their song played in a different game, it would complement the game much better. Aquatic Base would fit well for Kingdom Hearts for example, but otherwise this is definitely one of the only good parts of the game. Crisis City, Kingdom Valley and the Soleanna Town are my personal favourites.
As for the sound effects, Sonic Team went for a new sound library. It's not too bad, but there isn't a huge library full of memorable sounds. It's fresh and it works rather well, despite the game being total s***. Lol. The new jumping sound effect has stuck with the recently released Sonic games so I think it's done well for itself.
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------GRAPHICS: (3/10) "Bleeh"
Considering this game came out in 2006, it was by far no competition compared to Gears of War. But for a Sonic game, his game's new artistic approach was rather impressive. The world was coated with photorealism, the cast has been redesigned to look older, more serious and realistic, and Dr. Eggman was... ummm... Dr Eggman's appearance is rather ridiculous and alienating for most fans but it was a brave experiment to try out. It didn't exactly work but I can respect the new style they were aiming for.
Much of the budget though, must have gone into the very beautiful CGI cutscenes, possibly by commissioning the Final Fantasy animators to do it for them. But where it really falls apart is in the cutscenes run by the game's engine. The humans really don't look good in the slightest. Princess Elise has carrots for legs, a long neck, an alien face and the palest skin you will ever see. The NPCs have very low polygons and stretched textures which don't exactly blend in well with the world. The anthropomorphic Sonic characters are just as bad though. They don't animate their eyes, flex their body parts realistically or even move their face muscles; making them all look like baseball mascots that can blink. They don't act like puppets on a string, like in the Sonic Adventure games but they don't animate with any energy at the same time!
The main issue however, is the screen tearing and frame rate issues this game bleeds on you as you play. You will be encountering a lot of slow down if too much visual content is focussed on by your camera. Installing the game doesn't help your system work with the game's coding so you will most definitely experience graphical issues.
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------GLITCHES: (0/10) "Santa has some serious competition with this list!"
* You can clip through floors for no reason.
* You can clip through wall for no reason.
* The invincibility period after taking damage sometimes doesn't function.
* Sonic has no invincibility period after taking damage on Mach-Speed sections.
* You can get infinitely stuck on the end of grinding rails.
* 80% of the time you will not jump off of grinding rails.
* You cannot hurt enemies by jumping into them!!
* On auto-pilot sections, the game can just decide to steer you off course to your death.
* Springs sometimes don't work.
* There are invisible walls over pits which can block you from making a jump.
* Enemies can hurt you when you homing attack them with Sonic, Shadow or Blaze.
* Sonic can use his gem powers infinitely!!
* The lip-syncing of every character is either delayed or non-existent!
* The Light Speed Dash fails to finish.
* Sonic 60% of the time when near an airborne trail of rings will Bounce instead of Light Speed Dash.
* You can Sequence Break the hub world to skip the story.
* Silver can leap forward when tossing objects to his death.
* Silver's aim 90% of the time does NOT go where you intend it to!!
* Silver can levitate on top of objects through walls to sequence break.
* Silver's dash and pimp-slap attack when mixed together can clip you through walls.
* Sonic's Purple Gem allows him to infinitely jump, allowing him to sequence break.
* Sonic's Sky Gem allows him to warp to locations he isn't meant to go!!
* Sonic's White Gem serves no function other than to levitate.
* When above water on a bridge, platform or harbour, the game registers you being in the water and pulls your gravity levels aggressively down.
* The character models clip their own body parts inside themselves.
* You can duplicate the 3 characters by sequence breaking their own stages where they are supposed to change characters.
* You can clip into the buildings in the hub world.
* The UNHOLY 15-30 seconds loading screens!!!
* The camera in the Egg Genesis boss fight doesn't focus on you.
* Enemy debris can still hurt you if you touch it.
* Sonic's maximum running speed limit can degrade to 2 feet per second.
* You can stand upside down on loop structures and other obstacles.
* Shadow's Hovercraft can flip upside down for no reason.
* Shadow's buggy gets permanently stuck into walls destroying itself over time.
* Shadow's glider can clip inside obstacles and walls.
* On shadow's gliding sections, you can survive by doing absolutely nothing!
* When shadow holds his Chaos Spear attack he can infinitely levitate.
* Shadow's homing combo attacks can deal absolutely no damage.
* The eagle on Kingdom valley can fly away without you grabbing onto it.
* Sonic has no jumping animation on Mach-Speed sections.
* The NPCs can clip through each other and obstacles.
* The NPCs can sit in the air with no seat.
* The NPCs endlessly mime their mouths as if they're talking for eternity.
* Boss fights can de-spawn!!
* Knuckles and Rouge cannot jump off of walls!!
* Knuckles and Rouge cannot kill enemies by gliding into them.
* Knuckles' punch attacks don't register as an attack!
* Knuckles' drill dive attack has less gravity than jumping!
* Knuckles and Rouge's climbing animation is broken, looking like a sexual rub against the wall.
* Sonic's snowboarding controls freeze, spaz and lock.
* Sonic's snowboarding sections have no physics.
* Sonic has no invisibility period after taking damage on snowboarding sections.
* Sonic when spin-dashing to his friends to switch places can spin-dash into you hurting/killing you.
* Sonic's electric shield doesn't protect him from enemy damage.
* When against Silver in a boss fight, he can throw outside of the skybox!!
* The time holes in the End of the World can instantly suck you in randomly.
* When turning off the time portals, they can magically come back when they shouldn't.
* When doing a kick attack as Sonic or Shadow on top of an object, you can catapult off of the map or in the sky.
* Sonic's gem abilities don't function when going through auto-pilot sections.
* Sonic's gem abilities don't function when doing mach-speed sections.
* Silver the boss fight is game-breakingly broken. If he grabs you, put your controller down and just give up... It's no use.
* When Silver fights boss fights, if the boss has more than 1 hit box his aim goes out of control.
* Standing on the corners of platforms will have your character spaz their model.
* Objects can spawn late right in front of you, blocking your way.
* Your wingman loves to commit suicide.
* When loading up a Town Mission, the game can fail to load the next chat box.
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------ACHIEVEMENTS: (1/10) "D'ah shameful dispray!"
There are a total of 23 achievements to be earned in this game out of the 50 retail cap, and let me put it gently to you. This list is translated into some of the worst 'ingrish' on Xbox 360 games! A favourite everyone points out is an achievement for Sonic where he has to purchase every upgrade and gem, the description says, "Super Sonic Obtain the all moves." XD
If you translate them correctly or just simply look at the guides for information, you will find out that the achievements are far from enjoyable, easy and worth the work. You will need to perfect EVERY single Act Stage, Town Mission and Boss Battle which are pretty damn difficult due to the game refusing to cooperate with you rather than skilling your way through. Half of the work needed to S rank many levels involves breaking the game even more to win. Lol. Whilst enjoyable to break, what is already broken, you shouldn't be playing like this! It is a huge flaw in game design!
You will also need to gather every collectable known as Silver Medals. 10 are scattered in every level and 50 are in the hub worlds. What do you get as a reward for collecting these?
These achievements are not fun to net nor do they truly act as a trophy case for your hard work. You may be seen as a tough champion by others who fear this game, but personally... you feel like you are forsaken with this list incomplete, whilst at the same time still keep that depression after all that hard you sink into the game.
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------VERDICT / CONCLUSION: "It's no use!"
I bought this game 1 year ago to see if I could rise to the challenge of beating the hardest and most broken Sonic game to date, by S-ranking every level whilst trying to avoid unlocking any achievements along the way. After sinking in as much and as little as I could, I learned that I wasn't truly ready for the sheer torment and one way road to hell. I took the game back, but after being convinced again a year later by many reviewers and a bucket load of funny glitch videos, I manned up and went for it; convinced I could do it... and somehow, I did. But deep down, the accomplishment felt empty and not as satisfying as every Sonic game to date!
Sonic has always been about speed, skill, reaction times, trickery and experiencing a fun silly story about a blue hedgehog and a fat big-grinned scientist who are both complete assholes. Lol. All of that is completely flushed down the toilet with this game as it alienates you with a collection of poorly chosen plot devises from many games that survive off of these concepts (Mario, Final Fantasy and Dragon Ball Z
) and utterly disregards its own originality that made Sonic what we all see him as. Top it all off with a landfill of glitches, programming issues, broken gameplay mechanics, lazy shameful level designs/layouts, pointless scrapped missions, 15-30 second loading screens every minute and you have yourself a game that should have been cancelled to save the reputation of both the publisher, the developers and most importantly, the franchise.
This game screams, "Shut the f*** up and give me your money!!" rather than "This game is gonna be cheesy and kick ass because I'm Sonic, you're not." I blame both Sega and the Sonic Team for this abomination of what became Sonic 06. Greed can truly ruin your business and it very nearly did with this game. If it weren't for the Sonic levels in Sonic Unleashed, people would have left him to die. I consider the Sonic Team and Sega to be one of the most fortunate companies in the gaming world to escape rock bottom and climb back up.
This game will forever remain the lowest point in Sonic's life (unless something worse comes out for him
) and will be a leading example to game designers how not to create a game, an example to writers how not to write a story, and an example to character designers how not to steer character development out of context. The Sonictards can forever argue about how the game is great, but no matter what they say, they are wrong!! If you are morbidly curious and find it difficult to truly believe that a Sonic game could be as bad as this, or you hate yourself, I encourage that you try this out for yourself! This is one of those "It couldn't get any worse" scenarios, but then it surprises you every time. If you have no interest in the Sonic franchise, then read my lips, "DON'T TOUCH THIS DISEASED TURD!!". You deserve better and so does Sonic!
To wrap this up in one sentence, as Silver would say with this game's most iconic line,
"It's no use!" - Silver the Hedgehog (2006)