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Sonic the Hedgehog Review Round-Up!

We sure have a lot of Sonic reviews on the site now, thanks to our Love Letters to Sonic review event! We’ve rounded them all up below so you can read them at your leisure:

Main Series:

Side Games (Console):

Side Games (Handheld):

Side Games (???):

The Tails Section:

Knuckles:

Podcast Episodes:

10 Minute Gaming Podcast Episode 10 – Dragon Quest VI with Joshua Jarrett

Welcome to the 10 Minute Gaming Podcast! Hosted by Will Dowell, this podcast tasks our guests with talking about their favorite games in just 10 minutes! This biweekly podcast has new episodes every other Thursday… or get the chance to listen in two days early if you sign up for our Patreon!

Follow our podcast on SpotifyApple Podcasts, or wherever you get your podcasts.

On this episode of the 10 Minute Gaming Podcast, artist and illustrator Joshua Jarrett talks about one of the most beloved entries of the Dragon Quest franchise.

Will Dowell – @Shmoo505
Joshua Jarrett – @jxuajarrett

Intro and Outro Music: Pim Poy

Sonic Forces

Sonic Forces is the textbook definition of an identity crisis, as the game is stuck between being a decent 2D platformer and a mediocre 3D one. Prioritizing quantity over quality, the levels take around two to three minutes to complete, with the only sense of difficulty coming from poorly-designed boss battles. I’d be more positive if the game controlled better, but aside from the adequate Classic Sonic sections, the rest of it plays like you’re on the Moon. Throw in a story so nonsensical it puts J.J. Abrams to shame, and this was astonishingly middling for an “anniversary” title.

Shattered – Tale of the Forgotten King

This tale begins in Hypnos, a dark, dying world with a mystery to solve. You take the role of Astyr, a wanderer with no memories of your past and a lot of questions. Shattered brings the classic souls-like formula to a new level, mixing dynamic and precise combat mechanics with a platformer open-world depicted as enthralling as it is hostile and a beautiful soundtrack. Armed with the sword Catharsis and accompanied by the creepy Y’aak clinging on your back, you will travel through vast landscapes in a quest to find out the truth behind the disappearance of the Forgotten King.

Sonic Chronicles: The Dark Brotherhood

Did you know that there’s a Sonic game from Bioware on the Nintendo DS that launched in 2008? Well, there was, and this was it. This being a Bioware game it was an RPG that starred Sonic and his friends fighting back against evil. Combat has a touch of Paper Mario in it with you having to time button presses during actions to get the best effect from them. While it often fell foul of pesky battles, the overall experience was a lot of fun with a lot of clever nods to classic Sonic set pieces plus that Bioware charm.

Sonic The Hedgehog (2006)

The 2006 reboot of Sonic the Hedgehog is, in one word, awful. People wanted Sonic Adventure 3 and instead got an endlessly-loading, finicky to play mess of a game. Sonic actually managed to go too fast, and many times players would send the blue blur hurtling to his death. Silver’s gameplay is slow, finicky, and just not fun. Shadow was thankfully a bit slower and easier to play as than Sonic, but I’d be lying if I said I remembered anything else about his path. Asides from the… questionable human love interest (yikes), there’s nothing worth remembering about Sonic ’06.

Sonic Battle

Sonic Battle answered the important question that nobody had really asked. “What if Sonic was in Smash Bros?” Now, Sonic is in Smash Bros. now, but he wasn’t back in 2003 when this game came to the Game Boy Advance. Sonic Battle is an arena battler that stars Sonic and a host of other characters from the series alongside Emerl, who is magic and can learn the skills of the other fighters. The combat was incredibly fun but rather simple, and while the multiplayer was good, the limitations of the GBA held it back somewhat compared to a console game.

Sonic Heroes

I was really looking forward to seeing how well Sonic Heroes held up after so long, and it does, although not without some hiccups. The controls are noticeably worse than Sonic Adventure- I flew off edges in ways that honestly made no sense- and the voice acting is also grating at times, but damn if I wasn’t having fun all the while, even when I somehow would blink off of a cliff. Sonic Heroes is definitely a wonderful start for first-time Sonic players, but veterans of the franchise don’t need to linger after finishing Team Sonic’s portion of the game.

Sonic Adventure 2

Never have I played a game that celebrates itself more. Sonic Adventure 2 is a bonanza of iconic sights and sounds. Every track sounds like it could be the main theme and every level could be the primary aesthetic of its own game, making Sonic Adventure 2 a mascot of itself. You play as a rotating cast of six near-perfectly designed cartoon mascots who then create and raise baby mascots called Chaos at a liminal nightclub/kindergarten/horse track called the Chao Garden. It’s frankly brilliant. If only the actual platform gameplay wasn’t nearly broken. SA2 is a classic, nevertheless.

Sonic Adventure

Sonic Adventure is exactly what it says it is: an adventure. Where in later Sonic games, including Adventure 2, would forsake the open-ended structure classic Sonic levels are known for in favor of high octane speed, Adventure revels in translating this less appreciated aspect in 3D. Whether you’re watching the sunrise as you scale the side of a skyscraper or are thrown on a snowboard mid-avalanche, Adventure’s good moments come like a rush of adrenaline. Unfortunately, the other campaigns feel half-baked, most only spanning a spare couple levels before fully exploring experimental gameplay elements. Nevertheless, Adventure captures Sonic’s liberatory joy.