Review by james_corck
Sonic 3D blast + Sonic the Hedgehog + Mass Effect = Great game
Bioware has demonstrated that they are some of the best developers and programmers of games nowadays, because going from the space opera RPG/Shooter of Mass Effect to this fuzzy and cartoony looking first RPG of Sonic the Hedgehog is a staple, since there's barely a flaw in its design.
Taking from the assumption that we have had not a single good Sonic game for almost a decade, thinking on Sonic in an RPG format was impossible, but Bioware made it. Exactly like Square and Nintendo made with Mario RPG, Sega and Bioware took the universe of Sonic and transformed it into a land of exploration and turn-based combats. The combination of a pseudo 3D world with 3D characters is quite good, thought there are some parts that present a bit of clipping the level of detail and dedication they gave to make each zone of this vast world different is worth mentioning.
For those who were weary about how Sonic might look like into an RPG format let me just say that this game gets rid of some of the things that could make RPG's a bit slow: The turn base combat is fast and declares all your attention since you will have to tap or slash on the DS' touch screen to realize some attacks or dodge any assault from the enemy; there are no random encounters since you will be able to evade monsters (except final bosses) pretty much like in Earthbound; you can customize your character since every time they level up you are given 1XP to spend on any ability (you guessed it, like Mass Effect); and the dialogues are actually very fun, since you can skip chunks of it, which will diminish your immersion in the game but that will come in handy when you don't want chatter and all you want is action.
The story is quite good as well, and to save spoilers I will not explain much of it, just to say that at the start of the game Knuckles gets captured and that apparently Eggman is not behind it...or is he?
Overall is a great game, with minor flaws, but all good games get them, so now onto my personal rates:
-Graphics: 9,5/10. They are smooth and nice looking, they look like a cartoon most of the times.
-Sound and Music: 8/10. The music blends with other sound clips and the sound effects sound simple sometimes, but they have included some 16 bit sounds from Sonic games, so that's overly cool.
-Controls and Game play: 9,8/10. They are not perfectly precise, but when it comes to touch screen only Phantom Hourglass and The World ends with you beat this title.
-Story: 9/10. It's really intense and deep, full of twists, you gotta play it to understand it.
Overall note: 9/10
Rating: 4.5 - Outstanding
Product Release: Sonic Chronicles: The Dark Brotherhood (EU, 09/26/08)
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