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Sonic Generations review
Meh
by Basilio Guzmán Gómez

Sonic Generations PC Review (Finished on 09/12/2020)

Pros

+Good overall sound effects and voice acting. All the sound effects within the game, whether it is the retro sounds of the old Sonic, the stomping of the enemies, the homing attack of the new Sonic, the rings sound, the explosions, even the spin roll as well as the boost effect of both Sonics sound as crisp and immersive as ever giving an enhanced experience for the classic games but also not losing the touch of what made the newer games good in the sound department. The voice acting is still delivered with the iconic performance of the traditional persons reprising their respective roles such as Roger Craig Smith as Sonic, Kate Higgins as Tails, Mike Pollock as Dr. Eggman from both the past and present plus many more for a traditional but well-done execution in this aspect.

+The cast of colorful characters is one of the core elements of the Sonic games and the cast of this game, does not disappoint.

Amy Rose - The pink and charismatic personality which love for Sonic is something she's never shy to show. Amy helps Sonic with some challenges that employ the usage of her hammer.

Blaze The Cat - Debuted in Sonic Rush, the pink cat with fire powers helped Sonic through the challenges that involve extinguishing the flames blocking Sonic path.

Charmie The Bee - The third member behind the band composed of Espio and Vector, Charmie offered to help Sonic on some of his challenges as gratitude for saving him.

Cream The Rabbit - The pure and well-intended caramel-colored rabbit still remains an ally of Sonic, after being rescued by him several times in the past. Cream not only helps Sonic in some of his challenges but also competes with him to see who can reach their objectives first.

Dr. Eggman/Robotnik - The evil genius once again attempting to defeat Sonic once and for all. This time, he reunited with his past self, and by controlling a strange phenomenon that alters space and time, he attempted to undo all of his previous defeats at the hand of Sonic, but once again is defeated by Sonic.

Espio The Chameleon - The serious purple chameleon devoted to his ninja proficiency debuted in Sonic Heroes. After being saved by Sonic, he helped Sonic in some challenges where his hook makes Sonic able to reach some difficult places.

Knuckles The Echidna - The forceful protector of the Great Emerald debuted in Sonic & Knuckles, was saved after Sonic restore the Sky Sanctuary level, which he in turn helps Sonic into some of his challenges by scavenging rings and special coins.

Miles "Tails" Prowers - The very intelligent and loyal sidekick of Sonic which also encountered his past self after the rupture of time and space. Both versions of Tails helped Sonic to guide him through the many levels affected by the phenomenon and it was the main guider in the final battle against it.

Rogue The Bat - The charming thief debuted in Sonic Adventure 2, was rescued by Sonic when he restored City Escape, something she agreed to help him to elude some enemies in certain of Sonic challenges.

Shadow The Hedgehog - Debuted in Sonic Adventure 2, Shadow serves as a sub-boss where Sonic is forced to defeat him to obtain one of the Chaos Emeralds.

Silver The Hedgehog - Debuted in Sonic 2006, a stubborn but powerful telekinesis power wielder served as a sub-boss,  as he posses one of the Chaos Emerald Sonic needs in order to stop the phenomenon to continue ripping through space and time.

Sonic The Hedgehog - The protagonist blue hedgehog capable of ultrasonic speed. He encountered his past self in order to restore the collapse of the worlds caused by the strange phenomenon.

Vector The Crocodile - Debuted in Sonic Heroes alongside Espio and Charmie, the thoughtful but musical oriented character helps Sonic in some challenges where his strength is used to launch Sonic to some places where Sonic jump range is not possible to reach. 

+The Challenge levels offered throughout the game are very varied per act, where only one called The Doppelganger Race, a mode where Sonic races against his ghost to see which one reach to the end of the level faster, but after that, every single Challenge level is different from one another, with examples like the Goal Posting Juggler, a mode where the old Sonic need to juggle the finish line to the end of the level or the save the animals challenge where Sonic sometimes competes with one of his friends or go alone in saving a fixed amount of animals before clearing the level and like that, the game happens to contain an approximate of more than 30 different challenges, offering a good replay value in the process.

+The gameplay is decent. Sonic Generations blend the two styles of gameplay. When playing the first act of a level, the gameplay is with the old Sonic from the Sega Genesis era, gameplay centered in few sections towards speed but the rest is centered towards platforming while the gameplay in the second act is with the new Sonic of the Sega Dreamcast era with some features from newer titles, a style where the majority of the time is towards speed with fewer sections of platforming, pretty much the vice-versa of the old Sonic. The essence of the core gameplay is the still the same with both Sonics, as the old depends solely on his jump and terrestrial spin attack with the option of adding one of the three styles of shields, the normal one capable of resisting one hit, the electric shield granting a double jump, the aqua shield enabling bouncing, and the fire shield capable of triggering an air dash. The new Sonic on the other hand relies on the boost ability while pressing a button dictated by a boost bar while also having his sweep when accelerating and his homing attack on air. Both Sonics can be customized further with features such as less speed decrease, instant braking, faster acceleration when starting to run or depending on the Sonic, the old can turn his enemies into rings and the new can either regenerate his bar or having an unlimited Boost bar, all the previously mentioned enhancements can be obtained within the Skill Shop of the game that after finish each level, a set amount of points are given to purchase such skills, each with a designated amount of skill equipment cost, for which Sonic can depend on a maximum of 100 points to customize his set of skills. Lastly, after game completion, both Sonics unlock the ability to transform into Super Sonic in all levels, something that prior completion is restricted due to his flying ability and temporal invincibility traversing each act. Another highlight to mention when playing the Challenge stages, they will be some challenges where Sonic will use the assistance of his friends rescued towards the main story, such as Amy, Tails, Knuckles, Rouge, Blaze, Vector, Espio, etc but the function of each one depends on the challenge at hand, for example, Espio can help Sonic to grab his hook to jump, Rogue can freeze the enemies by using charm on them, Blaze can extinguish the flames blocking the path, Vector can throw Sonic to fixed directions and many more.

+The graphics were genuinely nice. The developers of this game did an amazing job recreating one of the most detailed Sonic games even for today's standards. Every level is shown with good effects, good modeling for the characters, high graphical fidelity in terms of particles, overall design of both Sonics, enemies design, the vibrancy of colors, and level layout without losing the cartoon style that is characteristic of the Sonic games but offered in a very appealing way visual-wise.

Neutral

+- Sonic Generations is a celebration of the great music of Sonic as well, having several titles from both past and present, each one with their own rendition for both the old Sonic levels and the new Sonic levels. The reason why this point is Neutral because the treatment appreciation will vary depending on whether if players agreed with the changes found. For example, while players can appreciate the subtle changes done to the Chemical Plant song for old Sonic, some of the changes of the same song when playing the new Sonic does not make the original sound justice, because if listen carefully, levels like Seaside Hill and Green Hill Zone received minor adjustments, thus remaining very iconic, but even for levels like City Escape, the same cannot be said because they were completely changed when they should let the original song with just subtle changes if possible. By collecting the Red Rings, players can also unlock more iconic tracks from previous titles as well, some of them in their original rendition, some with new adjustments.

Cons

-Sonic friend's usage is only available within the Challenge levels offered per act. They could have included their participation within the main story since it shows how each one is saved whenever the Sonics restore each stage and all of them can be seen cheering for Sonic in the final battle.

-The boss fights still feel way one-dimensional where in order for the players to finish the boss fights, they must submit to the limitations of only doing specific actions the game tells you to do and in the time the game decides. They should have implemented a way for players to have more freedom in finishing the boss fights.

-The DLC content should have been more levels targeted to the main story, as it only enables a pinball game dedicated to the Casino level of Sonic Adventure.

-The online mode seems non-functional in 2020 therefore they won't be something to highlight about the mode. They could have opted to remove the Online mode, as the single-player experience is the main highlight of the game, making the Online mode a redundant one.

-The story is still very simplistic. Sonic Generations is a game that pays homage to older and newer entries. This time, Sonic is surprised by his friends with a secret picnic and cake due to Sonic's birthday when suddenly, a strange force appears, sucking not only his friend but all the life of the world rendering all the worlds in a white-colored stale condition. In the pursuit of the strange phenomenon, after rescuing Tails, it is discovered that Sonic is not alone trying to save the world when Tails noticed there's something strange with Sonic, only to arrive at the conclusion he was saved by the Sonic of the Sega Genesis era, and the Sonic of the present saving the Tails of the past as well, thus concluding the entity warped space and time collapsing all the worlds but leaving the two Sonic and Tails in the present for which the two Sonics need to go through each stage of past and present to restore them to their previous state. In one battle with the Dr. Robotnik of the past, the entity captures Dr. Robotnik, and when Dr. Eggman of the present appears and is defeated the same happens, later Sonic collects the 7 Chaos Emerald to restore the gears of time to battle the entity, but for his surprise, he found the entity was controlled all along by the two Dr. Eggman, forcing the two Sonics to combine forces, transforming both into their Super Sonic form, defeating both Dr. Eggman, restoring all worlds and all of his friend and leaving the two Dr. Eggman in a limbo empty state where the time does not flow at all. The story could have been a little deeper, especially with the introduction of space and time continuum arc, to offer a rich experience that even expand of the lore for the whole Sonic universe but unfortunately it was not the case with this entry as they missed a great opportunity to expand on what happened to each character when warped through time, more in-between story expansion when jumping from one level to the other, since Sonic Generations contains 9 iconic levels from the past such as Green Hill Zone from Sonic 1, Chemical Plant from Sonic 2, Sky Sanctuary from Sonic & Knuckles, Speed Highway from Adventure 1, City Escape from Adventure 2, Seaside Hill from Heroes, Crisis City from Sonic 2006, Rooftop Run from Sonic Unleashed and Planet Wisp from Sonic Colors, taking into consideration they are three sub-bosses such as Metal Sonic, Shadow the Hedgehog, and Silver, again with no creative narrative expansion, feeling like a rush completion of levels to go the next, finish it, and repeat.

-Very bad PC port. The optimization is not good indeed as the game crashed a total of 11 times before reaching completion, even on high-end computers, it seems to lower the frames on some occasions and it does not play well with a multi-monitor setup since the port not only does not let you choose the main monitor to operate but also starts in the monitor not assigned as the main one. On top of that, it seems there's a positioning issue where sometimes Sonic was walking certain path only to end outside of the map, sometimes it did not register the proper landing in some platforms, resulting in death, the movement felt heavy at times and if users play on the controller and for some reason, the controller is disconnected, then the whole game freezes. They should have submitted the port to more polish and QA revisions before deploying the port, as even the Online mode sometimes makes the game suddenly shut down when attempting to accessing it.

-While one of the collectives is tied to the main story such as the Chaos Emeralds, the same cannot be said about the Red Rings, which only serve the purpose of unlocking more music and artwork. They missed an opportunity to attach the Red Rings to serve a purpose within the main story.

Other reviews2

Translated by
Microsoft from Deutsch
Story: The Story is done nicely. Sonic's Birthday is built in and you don't have to fight your Way through a boring Introduction, but are right in it, and the Questions that arise make you want to keep playing. However, the Plot is a bit short for me personally and some Of the questions that arise towards the End are unfortunately not clarified. Level Design/Graphic: The Graphics are beautifully designed and tailored to this comicfigure-typical pretty well. In addition, the Graphics are adapted to the Design of the respective Levels and give an extra kick with the mothballed, modern design of The Nostalgia. Music: The Remixes are super done and are very welcome to listen. As a SA2-loving Player, of course, I have to say that "Escape from the City" remains my Favorite. If you don't like the Remixes, you can also set the Originals if you have unlocked them. Scope: From the Story and the Main Level it could have been a bit more, but the Side Missions are good in number. With 6 newly installed Bosses, the Game is also good at it. Then there are the red Rings that make you discover the Level properly and for which 100% is not just racing through. Plus, the Skills are a good Help To set new Records. Online mode: I would have expected more from this than just blunt Leaderboards, such as a local or a proper online multiplayer, where you really compete against each other at the same time. Difficulty: At the Beginning it's pretty fairly tailored for every Beginner, but the Level Of difficulty increases quite a bit at some Point, and you have Trouble getting forward. I would have preferred a selection of the Difficulty. Summary: Sonic Generations is a good Game that combines the 20th Anniversary Sonics with Classic and Modern Gameplay pretty well and brings new Ideas even in well-known Zones.
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