If you're a fan of Sonic, know that Sonic Generations marks a return to glory for the blue hedgehog. It's almost as if Sega and Sonic Team got together and decided that now is, in fact, the time to release some good Sonic games.
We were sent a copy of Sonic Generations for the 3DS to play through and consider. Given that this holiday season is absolutely stacked with great games, we're not going to have time to commit ourselves to a full and proper review of the product. Now, normally we'd sit and decide whether or not we were going to run coverage of a game or leave it completely alone…
Clearly, I decided this one deserved some of our time.
On the 3DS, Sonic Generations is a strong rebirth of what made this brand so great. It's the best portable Sonic title since Rush on the DS. It's mostly a 2D side-scroller with some 3D elements peppered in for good measure. This is, truly, a Sonic game.
The gameplay is all about twitch-reflexes. Things happen quickly and develop in such a small place that it requires old-school-like memorization to play through certain levels. For fans of the way gaming used to be, this is a plus.
However, it's also the major problem that will probably keep a lot of people away from Sonic Generations for the 3DS. As great as the early levels are, the end of the campaign starts to get very sloppy very quickly. You'll start wondering if this is an exercise in old school gaming style or poor level design as awkwardly placed enemies and pits line up one after the other.
It starts fast and it ends on a crawl. The boss fights are a bitch, the decision to give old Sonic the same abilities as new Sonic while giving new Sonic less 3D levels makes the distinction between the two almost pointless and, finally, it's almost like the designers quit on this project halfway through.
So it's here that I give you one of the weirdest recommendations I've ever delivered. If you're looking for a visit to old Sonic on a portable device, this is currently your best option. While it may not be the best game this holiday, it's sure to give diehard fans a reason to grin.
However, if you're a new gamer or you were never much for Sonic's style of play, do yourselves a favor and stay away. You'll wind up cranky and frustrated in no time at all.