Sonic Triple Trouble 16-Bit

Sonic Triple Trouble 16-Bit

released on Aug 02, 2022

Sonic Triple Trouble 16-Bit

released on Aug 02, 2022

What if Sonic Triple Trouble had been originally released on the Sega Genesis / MegaDrive, after Sonic 3 & Knuckles?

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My goodness. I had saved Triple Trouble for the end of my Game Gear marathon because I had heard it was probably the best entry on there, and of course to jump straight into the 16-Bit fan game afterwards (that I knew next to nothing about), which I thought would be a nice reward to give myself for the mediocrity that was sure to come. I was absolutely not prepared for how much this was going to blow me away. Maybe I should have expected it knowing the reputation some would give sonic fan games of “being better than actual games”. Whether that’s a notion overblown out of enthusiasm to crap on Sonic games or not, there is no denying that we have some super passionate fans, but even still I could never have predicted how much I would enjoy this. Sonic 3 and Sonic Mania are fundamental Wollom-core games, and I would struggle to tell you that Triple Trouble 16-Bit doesn’t match these experiences, or even top them in some aspects.

The original Triple Trouble was indeed a decent game in my opinion. It didn’t quite take the cake for best Game Gear game though, that would go to Sonic 1, because that feels like a game that somewhat knows what hardware it’s on, and builds a fun platforming experience that isn’t necessarily trying too hard to be Sonic (this was very early days so it didn’t have too much to go off of anyway). Triple Trouble on the other hand, absolutely understood what gave Sonic 2 and 3 their identity and success, and rolls with it; It’s got original level theme ideas, plenty of gimmicks exclusive to each zone, a good balance of sections designed around both speed and platforming, it even has some ambitious set pieces and tells a more than one-note story involving a few characters. What is unfortunate is that this simply could not have its potential fully realised on a 4:3 screen with (I’m sorry GG fans) very botched Sonic physics, it’s just the nature of how these games turned out. But it absolutely gets tremendous points for effort and I respect how much this rose above the attempts of Sonic 2 8-Bit, Sonic Chaos, and Sonic Blast.

With all of that said, the idea to remake the game as if it was on the Mega Drive / Genesis makes complete sense doesn’t it? Touch it up a little and bob’s your uncle you’ve turned it into the better game it had the right to be. NonononoNO my sweetie pie, Noah Copeland had a VISION and he wasn’t going to let it just run away. Triple Trouble was Triply Transformed.

The first thing I noticed when I loaded up this game (apart from the super stylish main menu <3) was that we now play as both Sonic and Tails at the same time, whereas in the original you chose one or the other, and you can press a button to seamlessly switch between the controlling of either character on the fly! As long as they’re both on the screen you’re good to go! This change was awesome not only because it fits the original story better, but because the Japanese release of this game was actually titled Sonic & Tails 2. Straight away this feels like a true Sonic & Tails adventure :D . It’s really fun being able to switch to Tails for flight and Sonic for speed moves and elemental shields, rather than being locked to one for the whole playthrough.

The next lovely thing to grace your eyes is of course the massive glow up in the zones, there is not much else to say other than they’re all gorgeous. Foreground, sprites, tiny little visual effects, they all look damn good. But huge shout out to the backgrounds of these levels in particular, they are beautiful and often change dynamically throughout the zones, adding to the storytelling! These graphics alongside the new remixes of music tracks (which all sound GREAT by the way) marvellously replicate the feeling of classic Sonic and enhance it to a similar degree that Sonic Mania did.

Adding to that notion, to say that the levels themselves were mania-fied is an apt comparison for the most part. Well made sections from the original levels are retained and polished, while completely new ones with new gimmicks and sights are thrown into the mix. None of these gimmicks feel unwelcome. Snowballs and seels in Robotnik Winter Zone, leaf trampolines and snake basket platforms in Meta Junglira Zone, the list does go on.

The reason I say “for the most part” is because it’s where this game deviates from its inspiration significantly that truly impressed me. Along with reworked special stages, reworked and additional bosses, there are so many cool new setpieces, cutscenes and story elements within the zones themselves. My absolute favourite thing is how above and beyond the effort to seamlessly transition between zones is. No loading screens or teleportation, just an incredibly smooth and fun journey from start to end. I’m deliberately not explaining these things in detail because this game really is best experienced with the original fresh in your mind, with little idea as to how it will be translated.

There’s also a fricking competition mode. You might think what I initially thought, “oh, like in Sonic 3, that must not amount to much.”, but you’d be dead wrong!! This feels like a fangame in itself!! There are multiple types of minigames and 4 campaigns for Sonic, Tails, Knuckles and Fang, each telling their own story, with cutscenes, like, with dialogue and shit!! WTF? Why are you so magnificent Noah?

It kind of crushes my soul slightly to say that Triple Trouble Trumps some of my most beloved games, but I can’t deny that it at least stands alongside them, as a true classic Sonic game, and I think it will always feel this way to me.

If you are a classic Sonic fan, please check this game out, it thoroughly deserves it and will not disappoint.

A shockingly good adaptation of a rather justifiably forgotten Sonic game that's so good it makes you wonder if you missed something in the original. You didn't, by the way, but that's just Sonic Triple Trouble 16-Bit working its magic.

they did such a great job with this, definitely have to give the original a play

This was an incredibly fun game with a lot of cool ideas that I was impressed that they could fit on a Game Gear. Huge shoutouts to Noah Copeland and everyone who remade this, it was incredible. Loved it, play it if you have not yet.

i wouldn’t say i like this game any less, but i definitely didn’t realize on first playthrough just how much this game owes to the original, which is not at all a detriment to a remake but does make me a bit more critical of what it did and didn’t add or change. atomic destroyer act 2 in the original may be far more basic, but i would genuinely say i quite prefer it compared to the long, meandering pace of the act in this game, and the weird restrictions on characters just seem half-assed, and also mean playing the game as sonic or tails alone like the original is just impossible. still amazing, but definitely warrants a playthrough of the original first if possible.

Knuckles rocks in this game and the presentation is spot on. Banger soundtrack, awesome sprite work, really good in game cutscenes. Special stages are fun and intuitive to find since levels are generally pretty well designed. However not every gimmick is a winner and generally does still make this game feel a little "lesser;" add onto that a really slow endgame and the game gets brought down just a tad I feel.