Review by wolverinefan

Reviewed: 07/31/06

At leats it's better than Sonic R...

I had no interest in Sonic Riders. Sonic R was such a crappy game and to this day I still don't know why I own it. I played a demo of Riders and hated it. Decided to give it another try with a free rental. At first I hated it but then in some odd way it grew on me. Is the game good? No but it offers a lot to do.....

Sonic and pals are out one day. Someone named Jet comes along. Eggman blah blah blah. Chaos Emeralds blah blah blah. Suddenly you are racing to stop something or other blah blah blah. Okay, to be honest I watched the first few cut scenes and wanted to hang myself. The story is crap and I don't see why this game needed a story mode, it could have worked just fine as a normal ole racing game. Oh well....

Graphic wise the game is alright. Not mind blowing but decent. Character models are decent. Stages either look nice or like utter crap. I don't mean some stages look good and some look like crap. They all tend to look good but have many spots where it looks like crap.

Sound wise the game is alright as well. Voice acting is on par with all of the recent Sonic games, take that as you will. Sound effects are... Actually I don't remember those except the ring collecting sound is there. Music is actually good. Generic techno for the most part but a few of the songs were cool.

I found the control to kind of suck in this game. You move with the left analog stick. Hold X to jump, hold circle to dash and to do tricks you.... I don't know exactly, no matter what I did I couldn't pull off any tricks besides some turns and spins. I would get S's and AA's though.... The game feels more like a rail racer instead of a real racing game. Not always of course but most of the time...

I'm going to admit something here. I really only played the story mode, both parts of it. I checked out the other stuff though for this review but my main focus was story mode. Story mode is about 6 races per each part (there are two parts). It seems that you need to get in the top three for the first few and the rest is 1st place. Really simple except the final race of the second part of the story. It just sucked and made no sense until I looked up what you were supposed to do. It made sense then.

The basic idea behind the game is to get first place. Imagine SSX but with air. By that I mean you're going around a track, pulling off tricks. The catch is that you need to catch these drifts of air and ride them. You'll realize quickly you must catch these before they vanish, as they do vanish and if you miss one you might as well restart the race because the AI never seems to miss them. The tracks are then very linear and you just need to balance on this wave of air. It requires very little from the player.

You collect rings, which are used in the shop to buy items. There are plenty of items to buy. There are also a lot of modes to play. You have quick play and cup races which are nice. You also get mission mode which had two sections and each has maybe 15 or so missions. Nothing exciting. Think "pull 10 tricks off in 60 seconds". You can see why I didn't bother much with it because I really couldn't figure tricks out and to be honest those types of things just don't interest me.

So, in the long run Sonic Riders offers a whole lot of content. It isn't worth $40, or even $20. It's an alright rental but you really don't get a lot of control over your character as you do need to ride those air waves. It is better than Sonic R which is a plus but it isn't that much better. I can't fully recommend this game, not even as a rental unless you have a game pass from one of the major rental chains. It's a quick play, story mode is at least. It took me under an hour to beat both parts and I only had to redo the first race because I didn't understand the whole air wave riding. Either buy this for dirt cheap or rent it for free or on a pass.

Story - 5/10
Graphics - 6/10
Sound - 6/10
Control - 4/10
Game Play - 4/10
Replay value - 7/10

Final Score - 5/10

Rating:   2.5 - Playable

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