Review by SonicGamer74
Seriously Great Game, But Fans Of The Original May Not Enjoy The Changes Made
Now, before we get this review out of the way, let's do a brief history, shall we? Sonic CD was a popular video game for SEGA's SEGA CD console back in 1993. Being the console's best title (& only title anyone ever remembered) made this game very memorable. Sadly, I wasn't even BORN when this happened, nor did I own a SEGA CD, so I can't give any info about it to ya.
Now, moving on to 2002, we have Sonic Mega Collection for Nintendo Gamecube. The game was SUPPOSED to feature Sonic CD in it, but issues arised, & only the SEGA Genesis Sonic games were released on the collection. 4 years later, SEGA released Sonic Gems Collection which was ALSO for Gamecube. THIS featured Sonic CD & was available for everyone to play. Sadly though, the port was kinda off with some off-sync FMV sequences & some other issues........
*Ahem* Now, onto 2011. Sonic is now celebrating his 20th Anniversary & Sonic Generations had just come out. SEGA had promised to also put Sonic CD on Playstation Network, Xbox LIVE Arcade & the iTunes store. Lucky for me, I signed up for Xbox LIVE around the time I ordered said game so I managed to get a taste of what you might say is the best port of a Sonic game to date!
Gameplay is simple. You are Sonic The Hedgehog. Also known by some people as "The Fastest Thing Alive." You run as fast as you can from Point A to Point B before the clock hits 10 minutes. As all Sonic fans know, moving fast is a main part of the series & this game shows that off like almost any other Sonic title. Rings are used as your health system so, as long as you have at least one, you'll be safe from losing a life. There are also 3D styled Special Stages where you break UFO's(?) to earn a Chaos Emerald! This actually proves to be quite fun when you play.
Controlling Sonic is very easy. You use the Left Stick (or D-Pad) to move Sonic & pushing one of the 4 buttons (A, B, X & Y) will make Sonic jump. Holding down on the stick while pushing said buttons will make Sonic curl into a ball & roll while doing the opposite (holding the stick up while holding a button) will let Sonic do a move called, "The Sonic Split." The Sonic Split is VERY handy when you need a quick boost of speed without being curled into ball. But players beware! You can't hit enemies AT ALL if you use the Sonic Split so remember that if your picking between moves!
If you have EVER played the other Sonic games before this one (Sonic The Hedgehog & Sonic The Hedgehog 2) you probably somewhat know how the plot goes. There's a slight twist this time. Ya see, Dr. Robotnik has trapped plants (plants can control robots?) into robots & Sonic needs to save them all & stop Dr. Robotnik. Along the way, Amy Rose gets captured by Robotnik's new robot, Metal Sonic so there's a plus to stopping Robotnik.
Sonic CD's graphics are pretty much a re-hash of the Sonic The Hedgehog graphics. In other words, Sonic & Dr. Robotnik both look exactly the same as they do in the original Sonic game. Backgrounds are interesting, but won't keep your interest for long (heck, I only remember how the first Zone & that underwater Zone looked like!) Metal Sonic's sprite looks pretty cool & definitely gets the job done. Amy's sprite, however, looks kinda.........how can I put this without offending Amy fanboys..........bad. Yeah, she looks a little less appealing for this game &, imo, looked kinda like a Genesis version of Minnie Mouse. I'm not saying Amy's design from the 90's was bad. I just think the character sprite for her in Sonic CD was awkward looking.
Now the music in this game MAY offend some fans of the original Sonic CD that the SEGA CD & Sonic Gems Collection fans remember so fondly. Ya see, SEGA had some copyright issues with the artists of the original Sonic CD songs, Sonic Boom & You Can Do Anything (or known by fans as "Toot Toot Sonic Warrior.") So they had to change the original soundtrack with an instrumental version of said songs. IF, & only if you can get past these small flaws, you can have fun. The music that plays in the stages, however, sound a little different. I actually like these more than the SEGA CD's version, but meh. That's just me talking.
Sound effects in this game are your typical "boing, ring, chain saw, zoom" noises. The jumping, spinning & zooming sound effects sound different compared to the original Sonic classics, but it shouldn't be THAT much of an issue. Some new sound effects come in that weren't in the classic games, but you'll most likely forget them later.
The approximate play time for this game, imo, is about 3-5 hours. It took me about 1 week to beat it, but it approximately took that long. The game is like the other Sonic titles where you don't really have to play that long to beat it. However, you get to play as a super secret character at the end of the game! I can't tell you who it is, since that's just gonna spoil it, but let's just say it'll be interesting & something the Sonic fans might actually want. ;)
Depending on how much you enjoy this game will depend on how much you'll replay it. If you liked it a lot, you'll play it for a while. If you DON'T like it that much, don't expect to play it for a while. The unlockable character, however, will make the game more enjoyable & fun.
Now, considering that this title is for Xbox LIVE Arcade, there really isn't a way for you to rent this now, is there? So, if you have 400 Microsoft Points (or $5 if you can deal with using a credit card), then I'd give this a go. ESPECIALLY if you haven't played this game yet. If you have though, you may wanna consider if you enjoyed the game or not. I honestly say buy cuz it's one of the best ports for a game I've seen that's made changes! So go for it!
Rating: 4.5 - Outstanding
Product Release: Sonic CD (US, 12/14/11)
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