Bio
"Never give up, trust in your instincts.”
The “Scott of Woz” of Backloggd, Black-British Introverted dude who's mostly a fan of Nintendo/Playstation games and 2000s Platformers/Hack n Slashers
This is more of a Hobby/side activity and I like doing long reviews for many games i love or hate and making games/writing stories so that might attribute to a hiatus
Ratings
⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ Masterpiece, may have issues but are enough for me to love to death (9.5-10/10)
⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ 1/2 Amazing, with minor flaws (9/10)
⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ Great, but have a few issues that somewhat hinder it (8/10)
⭐ ⭐ ⭐ 1/2 Good, but have many issues (7/10)
⭐ ⭐ ⭐ Okay, mostly fine but have major issues(6/10)
⭐ ⭐ 1/2 Mediocre/Below Average with many redeeming qualities(5/10)
⭐ ⭐ Very Mediocre, but I have some very limited fun with (4/10)
⭐ 1/2 Bad, with some noteworthy redeeming qualities (3/10)
⭐=Awful, with some very minor redeeming qualities (2/10)
1/2=A fundamental failure in every way (1/10)
Personal Ratings
1★
5★

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Favorite Games

de Blob 2
de Blob 2
Sonic Generations
Sonic Generations
Super Mario Galaxy 2
Super Mario Galaxy 2
Hotel Dusk: Room 215
Hotel Dusk: Room 215
The Sly Collection
The Sly Collection

639

Total Games Played

007

Played in 2023

125

Games Backloggd


Recently Played See More

Sonic CD
Sonic CD

Jan 27

Assassin's Creed
Assassin's Creed

Jan 19

Beyond Good & Evil HD
Beyond Good & Evil HD

Jan 16

Ninja Gaiden Sigma
Ninja Gaiden Sigma

Jan 15

Last Window: The Secret of Cape West
Last Window: The Secret of Cape West

Jan 04

Recently Reviewed See More

Quick Prelude before i begin this review, this long gap of reviews shouldn’t have taken this long, the reason why i had a big gap of reviews is due to me wanting to do Sonic Generations as my 50th review, My Generations review was shaping up to be one of my longer review but i decided to shelf my Generations review until i cover the boost games in the near distant future, apologies for not putting out content enough, Anyway onto the review.
Sonic CD is a game alright, i sorta have a bit of a soft spot for this game, i played it in my IPad back in 2012 which i still have now and installed but don’t used it because it’s an Ipad from 2010, what was the “secret classic sonic game” is now sorta a divisive game in the Sonic series, some like it, some hate it and i just think it’s okay, Sonic games have a habit of being really great, decent, okay/mediocre to one of the worst things i have ever played and all of the above and this one of the sonic games! Before this playthrough i initially thought Sonic CD was around the same rating i gave Sonic 1 but, nope it’s just okay, this won’t really be a positive review so if you want a reviews that would break down what makes Sonic CD tick for them then i can’t recommend enough Luke’s Video on the game and one of my personal friends/mutuals (ShinGenX) review on Sonic CD. But anyway, with that i’m just gonna get straight into it.
Sonic CD is confused
Everything about this game screams confusion, again this is a game i barely like and i sorta understand it’s appeal but good lord, sometimes whenever it’s just as good as the previous Sonic games i then run into it’s baffling design choices that absolutely ruin its flow and fun factor, it’s like if the crisp company wanted to adhered to it’s previous crisps but also want to do something new, It’s weird that the Japan Team who made this game once considered it to be a sequel to Sonic 2 after they binned the CD Version of Sonic 2 idea but it more so feels like an Expansion of Sonic 1 with the same levels themes and similar design choices with a few of Sonic 2s cut concepts such as Time Travel being present.
Before i begin i should say, if you are curious enough to play this game, it’s safe to say that the Remaster released on mobile/Origins (and maybe if you’re likely enough to scrooge up the original PC Version so you can mod it) is the way to go, the original CD has a gimped Spin-Dash to make the Super Peel-Out look better, Worse looking FMVs and long loading times, The Remeaster gives playable Tails (& Knuckles if you have the mods), 16:9, Ability to swap the osts, a more accurate (and therefore) better Spin-Dash and other Quality of Life Additions/changes. If you want to play CD (Which is highly recommended since you should form your own opinion instead of parroting others) then Play the remaster, with that being said let’s dive into the weird and wonderful world of Sonic CD.
Sonic CD takes place after Sonic 1, Sonic dashes to Never Lake to visit Little Planet, a Planet that comes to Earth every year on the last month on the last day. As Sonic runs through the forest and to the lake, he sees the planet chained to the lake and a mountain in Robotnik likeness, Sonic runs into action as he is forced in another battle of Nature vs Industrialization, not before a spunky pink hedgehog called Princess Sally (who proclaims to be his girlfriend). As he ventures through Little Planet, he faces a Metal copy of himself aptly named Metal Sonic who captures Sally. Sonic is thrust into a new Adventure as he travels through time to collect the Time Stones, Destroy the Robot Generators and save Sally. Sonic CD is a pretty standard Sonic Story for the time but one important thing that sets this game apart from the other games is it shows the perfect utopia Sonic should be fighting for, a Balance. A Balance between Nature and Indrutslisarion in a Good Future. A Future that Sonic & his friends should all be fighting for, that benefits nature and doesn’t destroy it, I sorta headcanon that because this game is before Sonic 2, Sonic made the Tornado in response to seeing the Good Future, inspired after seeing how a balance can benefit a good future. With the gorgeous/timeless 2D Animated cutscenes, it feels like this is the game where they nailed Sonic’s Attitude and world, his design while unchanged in moment to moment gameplay has been refined to have a bit of an edge to it while being cute at the same time, Metal Sonic in the brief appearances in these cutscenes looks threatening as all hell and the environments are full of life.
And on that note, Sonic CD is full of life, everything in this game is blooming with soul, colour, vibrance, life and pigmentation. Sonic CD is a beauty to look at, I know some people are gonna say that it looks too colourful and that’s always a weird complaint i’ve heard, Little Planet is another planet, it’s supposed to be different than South & Westside Island, the out of the box aesthetics makes Sonic CD into the game it is. The Time Travel gimmick (which i have my issues with) really shows how full of life these areas are in the Past and Good Future, And How Robotnik royally fucked it up in the Bad Future, it really shows how Robotnik isn’t a man to messed with despite his goofy nature, feeling like the first game that shows us how Personal the struggle is between them. The Sprite art however, i feel quite mixed about, i don’t like Robotnik’s Hunchback design and Sally just looks off in my opinion, It’s also jarring playing this after Sonic 2 where they changed Sonic’s design there and now it’s back to the Sonic 1 design, i also don’t think the Badnik designs aren’t as memorable as the other games though are fine i guess, it mostly shines in its Backgrounds and Aesthetics and not really the Sprite Art.
When it comes to the music, Sonic CD’s Confusion begins to reap its ugly head in, You see they had a perfectly fine Japanese Soundtrack that amplifies the previous osts, using the Compacted Disc technology that was capable with the new Console, The Japanese/European Ost is fantastic, it’s varied, funky, energetic and feels like a natural evolution of the tracks from the previous games, not to mention since there’s 3 other variants, the ost is a lot blogger and more ambitious than the other soundtracks in the series so far, it can convey a wider way of emotions, happy and fun filled with Palm Tree Panic, slightly foreboding with Tidal Tempest and the Boss theme, full of wonder making you really want to explore the stage with Collision Chaos & Quartz Quadrant and so much more, the short vocal themes of “You can do anything” and Cosmic Eternity shows Sonic’s personality and how people feel about him, how he inspires positivity in other people’s lives, I could go on and on about Sonic CD’s Japanese soundtrack but i think you get the point.
Then Amercians said fuck that and decdied to make their own soundtrack because why not?
Seriously though, there's no real reason why they decided to make their own soundtrack and inadvertently delayed the game to do this, but it’s way way worse! It’s not bad per say and there’s some tracks i like such as Collision Chaos and of course, Sonic Boom is a great and iconic track but on the whole it feels a lot weaker, It’s mainly that the soundtrack all invoke the same feeling of funky 90’s music, with the exception of the Boss/Game Over themes which are threatening pieces of music but i don’t know, i’m struggling to remember one other track apart from Collision Chaos.. Except the Past music which is the same from the European soundtrack, why? Did they not have enough time to compose those other themes or pure laziness? I feel the Soundtrack, while at the very least, fine to listen to doesn’t fit the game overall and feels tacked on, sorta like Sonic R’s Vocal Themes, good but don’t fit the game.
That being said, the game itself is fine? It’s weird to put how i feel about this game since at its core, it seems to be a fine enough “expansion” of Sonic 1, Sonic controls around the same, Rings serve the same health purpose with a risk reward system, there’s Shield, Speed Sneaker and Invincibility Power Ups, it’s standard stuff, those there’s one thing that set’s Sonic CD apart, You see, Each Classic Sonic game emphasis 3 of the tropes amd until Sonic 3 achieved a perfect balance, Sonic 1 focused on Platforming, Sonic 2 focused on Speed filled reaction time and Obstacle Courses and this game, focuses on exploration, of course all 3 elements pop up in each game before but those are the main elements of each game, I wouldn't mind if it was based on exploration
You see, Sonic CD has a few new gimmicks, each Act has a Robot Generator in the past, you go back in time to the past and find Robot Generator, then travel to the future to see the good future you have made, this sounds cool and all but in execution it's not very good. The Time Travel gimmick is so tedious in my opinion, i get it's to emphasise Sonic's speed elements but given other issues with the game i'll mention soon it just doesn't work well, if this was Sonic 1 or 2 then i wouldn't mind this but given how CD wants to use it's level, it feels so unorthodox, I think it would have benefited from having an alternative way to time travel, maybe there’s a time travel method that can get to a time period easily but it’s one that’s always set, then if you find the post and gain enough speed, then you can choose your own Time Period. Finding the Robot Generator is a bit of a pain too, there's no map or indicator anywhere in the game and it just feels so aimless looking for it, it's odd to me that CD prides itself on being a game based on exploration but wants to also be a linear experience like previous games.
It's so odd to me, it's like they had all these levels that were clearly meant to be explored but at the last minute, copped out and had a goal post just for fans who didn't want to explore the zones, it's commendable i guess for having such a versatile way to play but it feels half baked when playing it in both ways.
Trying to play Sonic CD like Sonic 1 or Sonic 2 doesn't hold a candle to the experience you’d have with the previous games, But it’s fun I guess. But you i feel like the game is probably best played when possible searching for the Robot Generators, I’d say the levels are more suited for exploration but again, it’s not nearly as fun as it should be, sometimes Robot Generators are hidden in the most obtuse places, not to mention that the already pre existing issues in terms of time travelling, i feel it’s not as fun as it should be, because of this confusion, Sonic CD never really hits it’s true potential, a thing that will be common for this series.
That isn’t to say Sonic CD is a bad game per say, far from it! I really dig some the levels here, Palmtree Panic is a great bright, vibrant first stage that gives Green Hill a run for its money in terms of gameplay and environments, Collision Chaos has an neat little stage with a good theme of being a Chaotic Casino and Forest, Tidal Tempest feels like the only stage that benefits from this weird hybrid of level design philosophy’s, Quartz Quadrant is busy but in a good way, it feels so full of ideas and Stardust Speedway is iconic and easily one of the best stages in not just this game, but Sonic in general. And with the Time Travel gimmick we get some really unique takes on the same stage, it may be more prehistoric or untouched in the Past or a mechanical cynical hellscape in the future (so Twitter) in the Bad Future and a perfect utopia like balance between both ideas in the Good Future
You’ll notice that some stages i’ve emitted, and that’s because they are the bane of my existence, Wacky Workbench is just annoying, in all incarnations of the stages, The Gimmicks in Sonic CD are mostly hit and miss, but the whole bouncy floor gimmick because it doesn’t suit the stage at all, Metallic Madness is just Scrap Brain but even more annoying, the badniks as just as bad as Act 3 Metropolis Zone too, it’s also just confusing to navigate through, even more than the other stages. It also has Chibi Sonic, An incredibly underdeveloped gimmick but, like honestly, do you really care because it’s Chibi Sonic, but unfortunately, Chibi Sonic aside, it’s such a shame Sonic CD ends on a whimper instead of a bang.
This is partly due to the Bosses, Sonic CD’s Bosses are weird. Instead of being a battle of attrition, a lot of Sonic CD’s Bosses are puzzles or short form challenges. On one hand, these lead to some of the best encounters in the game and even the series this far, Egg Tilter, Egg Conveyor, Egg Razer and of course, Metal Sonic are great and experimental bosses. On the other hand they are laughably easy when they do go for the old boss format, it’s laughably easy, this unfortunately includes the final boss, which were a highlight of previous games but here it’s so forgettable.
There’s also Special Stages and look, I can appreciate their ambition of being semi 3D and explorable. Essentially it follows Sonic trying to destroy a certain amount of UFOs on a time limit, and if you go on the water, your time runs out. These Special stages are the best ones i played so far and they still suck, the obvious answer which Sonic Mania even does is that the Ring count should have been the time limit, otherwise the Ring count is useless, there’s no Badniks and the things that do deplete Ring counts are easily avoidable. But the main issue is that Sonic controls so weirdly in the stages, he feels too stiff to turn and oddly enough, speed feels inconsistent,, there’s also a lot of depth perspective issues when trying to destroy the UFOs or get on another piece of ground. That being said, if you don’t want to go for the Robot Generators and still want to get the good ending, then I wouldn't say it’s a bad choice.
Looking back at this review, i feel the elements of a great game are right there and sometimes i can see that vision sometimes in it’s presentation and even the level design, but like, nah man i can’t completely vibe with this game, it’s not bad, far from it and i recommend a play with the Japanese ost on the remaster but on the whole, Sonic Compacted Disc is confused

Sonic The Hedgehog 2 is one of gaming’s best achievements, a game that managed to improve on everything it’s predecessor has done while also being so great, it’s no secret that I prefer this game to the first one but like, Sonic 1 was already very good and a solid start to the series, but this game is pure Sonic Euphoria, the pinnacle of the series, and while it has some flaws, it has some of the best stuff in the history of the series and what better time to look at this great game at it’s 30th Anniversary.
It’s no secret that the original Sonic The Hedgehog was a huge success, so to capitalise on that, a sequel was in order to be made right? Well not immediately as Sega thought it was “too soon” for a sequel though probably after seeing the money that the first game made, they were probably quickly persuaded to make a sequel, however while the original game was handled by Japan, Sonic 2 was handled by the United States from the team dubbed the Sega Technical Institute which was lead by Sony’s Mark Cerny, some developers from Japan did help however, namely recent Convict Yujii Naka who left Sega of Japan after pay disputes. The goal of Sonic 2 was to go all out with everything, Story, characters, gameplay, levels, music, everything and Sonic 2 succeeded with that but not what many people have thought, this game was hell to develop for. Sonic 2 would have been thrice as larger if the team had enough time, but cutbacks had to be done to get the game for that November 92 release, Stages such as the Hidden Palace Zone which would have big story beat for the New Chaos Emeralds was cut due to time and hardware limitations despite it being in a lot of marketing and a multitude of other zones including Dust Hill, Genocide/Cyber City Zone and Wood Zone. Sonic 2 was such hell to develop with as multiple team members left during the development due to language and cultural barriers, while with the crunch and crumbling expectations at the time set by Sega and the Team themselves, (so much so the game was borderline unplayable 48 Hours before release). Sonic 2 sounded like a disaster, a game that would be ridiculed and mocked for trying something new. But by all miracles, it succeeded. Sonic 2 despite not having as many zones they planned and the insane amount of crunch, was considered a great game both then and now and is arguably the best in the series and kept Sega afloat with 6 Million copies sold and made them a worthy rival to Nintendo. In a series inFamous for its disasters, who knew the best game in series would be subject to the things that caused the eventual downfall of Sonic, but that’s neither here nor there so the question is, what do I think? Sonic 2 is pretty good, like really good not my favourites in the series, but a mighty fine good Sonic game.
Sonic 2 happens a good while after Sonic 1 and other miscellaneous misadventures, Sonic at this point has meet with his 2 tailed protege/best friend, Miles Prower (who was subject to a similar competition that Sonic had) who’s nickname is Tails (he doesn’t do much in this game, he has some half assed flying gimmicks in the remeaster but that’s about it, his AI is funny though so i play as the duo), the 2 investigate Westside Island after Dr Robotnik has set his eyes in finding all 6 Emeralds with a mysterious 7th Emerald on the Island, from there Sonic & Tails are quickly thrusted into an new high octane adventure as the endless Battle against Nature vs Machines are strengthened. Sonic 2 obviously doesn’t have the best or most in-depth story, but the 3rd Act of the game is surprisingly strong, there’s a neat little progression that shows us the Industrial side of Eggman’s tricks, which eventually leads us to Sky Chase and Wing Fortress as Sonic’s new friend, Tails is shoot down leaving Sonic alone to face of against Egggman, leading to a fight in the Death Egg Zone with Silver Sonic and Eggman’s new invention, the Death Egg Robot. Both endings are really strong, while the canon/good ending isn’t as good as the “bad” ending both endings still are great, it shows that even at this point early on that Sonic inspires the people in his life positively which changes the world for the better around them, even with all 7 Emeralds collected and how Sonic is still fine, the fact that he still went to see Sonic, strengthens their brotherly relationship. It’s overall a good story that is still simple while adding that complexity that games after this will improve upon.
But it’s no secret that in terms of gameplay, Sonic 2 is just outstanding, a fast furious, 2D Platformer that prioritises speed above all else, while i like Sonic 1’s more slower pace and emphasis on keeping your flow and naturally gaining your speed, i can’t deny that this more high octane gameplay form is way more fun, this is partly due to the Spin-Dash, when you hold down and spam one of the buttons, you get a big burst of speed but as a trade of, you have to be still. This gives a good little tradeoff and strategy to how, like the original game you collect Rings as health or as extra lives which act as a 2 hit mechanism, one hit you lose all of them and then the next hit you're dead unless you collect more rings, there’s also more Enemies or "Badniks" than the first game which while taking one hit there's a good amount of variety and strategy to them about the way you approach them and how they behave, there’s also a few power ups that return from Sonic 1 that spruce up the Gameplay such as a Shield which acts as an additionally with no extra ring costs, speed shoes which increase Sonic's acceleration and speed and finally, the invincibility which makes Sonic invulnerable for a short period.
All of this is complemented by the biggest improvement, the Zones and Bosses, they downsized the majority of Zones to 2 Acts, which i’m honestly not a fan of, i prefer having longer zones though i do understand why some may like it the changes, the Zone roster this time includes:
-Emerald Hill Zone: A pretty fun zone, while not as graphical as strong as Green Hill, i find more fun speedrunning and exploring the stage due to more loop de loops and fun gimmicks, the boss is laughably piss easy though
-Chemical Plant: Such an iconic and great Zone, especially with Act 2 where you run down a long tube and then gain a ton of momentum when rolling down it, perfectly balances speed, platforming and fun and interesting gimmicks with the Mega Mack and Cubes, the boss however is slightly janky because of the way it works, i don’t it should have had falling platforms, otherwise it would be a pretty fine boss fight, chemical plant itself is the shining example of why Sonic is so great and why i’m still a fan, this stage is the pinnacle of Sonic designs and showcases why i love the series so much, high speed antics, great music, the prevalent themes of Nature Vs Machines through the environments, etc, Chemical Plant is the complete package
-Aquatic Ruins: A Great Stage in my opinion, better than Emerald Hill but not quite as good as Chemical Plant, the parts on land are fun but the arrows are bit overpowered in my opinion, i actually prefer going into the water since it feels a lot better designed and more fairly challenged than the parts on land due to that constant fear of drowning bring back that risk reward system of stopping to get bubbles or speeding ahead to get a higher score/mitigation of a Time over, the falling pillars are a bit janky and the boss is once again too easy but this overall another great Zone
-Casino Night Zone: This is like they saw what Spring Yard Zone was and overdosed it on Crack, more pinball gimmicks along with a pretty fun new Slot Machine gimmick that sure started many gambling addictions in 1992, some abrupt pacing moments but this and chemical plant is pure Sonic euphoria
-Hilltop Zone: This is the where i put the controller down for Sonic 2, not really a bad zone i like i think it’s decent overall, Great Aesthetics (despite it being literally and music as always but it’s sorta forgettable barring the parts where you escape the lava, i don’t like the seesaw gimmicks, the badniks really get on my nerves and the boss borders a weird line between easy and frustrating, still it’s a good zone just overall forgettable
-Mystic Cave Zone/Hidden Palace Zone: This middle part of Sonic 2 isn’t very strong in my opinion, while not bad this is more forgettable part and Mystic Cave Zone strengthens this belief, it’s a very slow zone, the aesthetics while look great, it’s gimmicks are inherently frustrating, resulting in some unfair deaths. I honestly don’t have much to say about this zone, the boss is fine albeit a bit too easy and the music gets on my nerves but other than that, the weakest zone in the game, However this is where i would move onto Oil Ocean but since i also played the Whitehead version i got to play Hidden Palace Zone, it’s a great stage, very colourful and full of life with the best Badnik roster of the game, The Boss however is just awful, it’s attacks and movement are way too unpredictable and it throws way too much on you, despite this, i feel this Zone managed to pick up Sonic 2 to it’s admittedly mediocre slump
-Oil Ocean Zone: I like this one, doesn’t hold a candle to the Mania counterpart or even the first half of Sonic 2, i think this one is mostly fun aesthetically and in its 2nd Act with the Oil gimmick, there’s a lot of doing nothing in this stage especially with a lot of automation with the cannons and propeller gimmick, The Boss is also probably my favourite in the game, while being basic there’s a good layer of strategy and challenge to the boss that most in this game haven’t seen
-Metropolis Zone: I don’t know if this is a hot take but Metropolis slaps and is the best Zone since Casino Night Zone, it balances speed, platforming and exploration with multiple roots with a good sense of challenge while giving us the hardest Badniks to fight so far, the gimmicks are also fresh and interesting throughout the Acts, The biggest issue is that it’s 3rd Act, i get why it needed a 3rd Act, it’s the final main zone and it needed to go on a bang, plus it sorta feels like from a possible time when Sonic 2 was planned witn 3 Acts but this Zone is insanely frustrating and unfair, the platforming feels sorta half baked and the enemies are probably at its worst here but despite this i was sorta surprised by Metropolis Zone, maybe i was expecting the worst, but not a half bad Zone.
-Sky Chase/Wing Fortress: Worst part of the game, Sky Chase is fine just insanely slow and boring and Wing Fortress, this Zone is horrendous, not only is there a cheap start to the zone where you’re forced to jump but the level design here is just Metropolis Act 3 but even worse, so many times i got softlocked with the start as i was stuck on the big propeller as i bounced off the Shield power up, Platformingg feels incredibly unnatural anc way too tight and it’s overall a confusing zone to navigate through, Boss is decent though
-Death Egg Zone: Does this count as a Zone? It’s not really one seeing as it’s just 2 Bosses, My guess was that this would have been a full 2 Act Zone, using Silver Sonic and the Death Egg Robot as Bosses but due to time constraints was rushed, reusing Chemical Plants assets but whatever sorta anticlimactic, I think Silver Sonic is a good boss, maybe to easy but it’s a fun boss, it feels like you have think for it’s gonna do next and then act fast before he attacks again, The Death Egg Robot is not as good, i feel it would be a decent boss if the hitbox wasn’t as janky or his attacks were slightly more predictable or varied, i don’t think the Lack of Rings is too unfair since Sonic 1 also had no Rings though possibly that Boss being in a different context may have had something to do with it
Sonic 2 Zones are a huge step up from Sonic 1, though you can tell there’s a huge drop-off in quality in the later act, nothing bad (Apart from Wing Fortress) but certainly not as bad as Sonic 1’s worst, it feels like Sonic 2’s development may have had a part in this game dropping in quality, which i can now somewhat appreciate the game being like this, since i was more mixed on this game before. But like the biggest issue just like Sonic 1 is the Special Stages, the original version was possibly even worse due to not being able to properly see the rings but the Remaster fixes this, however they’re still bad, the ring requirements are way too strict in most cases however it may be due to the fact that entering the Special Stages are different, instead of a Giant Ring at the end of the stage, you have to get 50 Rings to the Checkpoint then entering a small portal, Tails is also another issue, he has this long delay which i wouldn’t mind and got used to, but in later stages you have to be near laser focused on your reaction time and you just can’t do that with Tails, you may ask why play the game with him if he’s such a hindrance but even without him the stages would still be bad, especially if he’s not getting extra rings you missed, i just feel these Special Stages were more for spectacle rather than practicality because i’d say Sonic 1’s special stages are better due them being more varied and slightly more fun in them (i stress the word slighlty be it is a slight difference).
However like Sonic 2, it’s presentation is steller, it probably has my favourite Classic Sonic art style in the series, great character and badnik designs that fit right into Sonic 1’s pre established artstyle and world, Environments look even more lush & colourful with that serialised storytelling of progressing through a natural world that turns more industrialised. Plus the music is great as always, Dream Comes True returned to headline the ost and it’s as great as ever, a vocal song at the band made is present in ending at fits right in with the rest of the great soundtrack with the only stage theme i don’t really like is Mystic Cave, each of them also have a wider themes of emotions and really connect to the stages aesthetics much better than Sonic 1’s Soundtrack, I think my favourite track is probably the ending melody, something about that really feels like a great reflective story and adventure that we went through.
But just reflecting on Sonic 2, Sonic 2 (for the most part) is what a sequel should strive for, bigger, better, bolder and faster, it’s a game that’s just perfect for newcomers, not too hard or easy, not too long though not insulting short either, it’s definitely not a perfect game but it’s essentially a perfect sequel, it feels the Crisp company had really listened to the feedback and made a great packet of them, while not perfect is a great improvement of the last bag of crisps that while good, left a lot to be desired, however while the Crisp company go Beyond and above next time delivering an even better packet, or take a detour and try a new but familiar flavour?

Sonic Frontiers is Sonic’s next foray into a new era that will set the template for the Sonic games for the foreseeable future but is it any good? Bottom line, Yes & No, as a person who has played all 3D Sonic Games and a fan of this wonderfully flawed series, Frontiers is very and I mean very flawed I can’t deny there’s a good no, great foundation to plot an amazing game but Frontiers is not that game and that’s okay, especially since it feels the team who made this game really want it to succeed and be that formula for success, so much so they delayed the game from it’s initial Holiday 2021 release and really listened to player and fan feedback, so while I don’t love this game a whole lot, I feel I can appreciate it’s scale and ambition for what it wants to set out to do.
First the plot of this game, without spoiling details I find the plot to be… good, not great but a solid romp and return to the more shonen styled Sonic stories. It follows Sonic, Tails and Amy investigating the disappearance of the Chaos Emeralds, they find that it’s on the mysterious Starfall Islands, after they get sucked into a wormhole, Sonic is quickly enwrapped in a Race against time to save his friends and collect the emeralds while a mysterious new girl, named Sage tries to warn him to leave the islands. The plot is good mostly due to the character interactions, I think that’s mostly what Ian Flynn is great at it’s just fun to see these characters interact, again I gotta keep it a bit vague here but I love while Sonic doesn’t go through a major arc, he’s just a static character, his personality inspires those around him in a positive light, in turns it also sorta fixes some of the character issues in the Mainline games that are sorta inFamous in the Sonic community now, I do have a few gripes with the story however, for one i think it relies a bit to much on references in my opinion, like there’s a few lines in the game that sorta caught me off guard (in a good kind of way) that sorta did shape the world of the game and series upside down but I feel others come off as a bit unnecessary and shoe horned in. My other gripe is that I feel like the twists and such don’t really work and feel a bit anticlimactic, again gonna be a little vague here but while the stuff with the “ancients” and Koco where well done, I didn’t really found Sage to be a terribly interesting character and the pay off to her is pretty underwhelming despite there being a solid idea, it just feels rushed, plus it gets so insanely melodramatic at points even for Sonic standards, though the ending itself is well written enough. Overall I found the story while not the best in the series as I think the Adventure Games, Battle, Rush Adventure, both versions of Colours and maybe Black Knight edges out, is a fun time with likeable character that are some of the best in the series, great dialogue and overall a great tone that says prevalent throughout the game, if the twists were better, a bit more well paced, had better voice acting and maybe dialled back a bit on the references and the just talking scenes, I think this could be one of the best in series, but as it is it’s a solid enough story and better than anything in the past decade, so I’m content with it.
As in terms of Presentation of Frontiers, this is unfortunately where my more mixed thoughts on the game start to pop up, literally i mean because the pop in in this game is absurd, i don’t know if this was an [REDACTED] issue or my issues with the presentation can be linked to this but the point is, the Pop in in this game go beyond the standard Open world affair but rather something that is insanely common that it hinders gameplay. I also found the artstyle to be bland and boring, while it looks perfectly fine and i can sorta see what they’re going for especially with those enemy designs but the actual open zone looks so forgettable and bland for a Sonic game though does look fine in the grand scheme of things, i much prefer how Cyberspace looks, despite the inane reuse of these stage themes i have to admit they haven’t looked better before, they look really beautiful especially in the night. One aspect of the game that is a bit mediocre is the voice acting, while i dig Roger’s more serious direction as Sonic (which is literally Crane from Dying Light) other actors sound incredibly bored especially Sage and Eggman, The music is pretty strong, I’m Here & the Titan Bosses aren’t very good songs in my opinion but Vandalize and One way Dream are incredible tracks, Cyberspace music is great as well though the Open Zone music is a bit forgettable.
But I know what y’all here for, the gameplay and… it functions? Frontiers is essentially Sonic Forces but in an Open World, not really a bad thing but i wouldn’t say it’s a huge improvement from Forces apart from Controls which feel really nice to play around with especially using the Cyloop, just speeding through these fast lands at rocket speeds, platforming around the world in these weird sprawling sandboxes filled with Sonic iconography while using the drop dash and boosting feels so good. Sonic can use most of his arsenal from the Boost games along with the drop dash from Sonic Mania and the lightspeed dash, Sonic can also level up his speed, defence, ring capacity and power by either collecting fruit or Koco (very slowly might i add), Throughout the Islands you need to collect Memory Tokens to free your friends or talk to them, Portal Gears to Unlock Cyberspace levels, short bitesize 3D or 2D linear stages from previous games and Vault Keys to unlock the 7 Chaos Emeralds as well as Egg Memos, optional Voice recorded notes created by Eggman that expand on the lore of the series. This formula works in my opinion but the issue is, there’s not much variation, you’re mostly doing the same thing over and over again without much challenge for at least 11 Hours as a hardcore Sonic Fan, especially with the fact that the Islands don’t have much variety apart from aesthetics, There’s a fishing minigame and a casino gimmick at night and for a few missions there’s a few timed challenges, but it isn’t enough in my opinion and sometimes feel like variety for the sake of variety.
Supposedly the combat and puzzles was supposed to be the big solution to this however while fun, i think both are way too simple and the challenge is essentially nonexistent, especially in terms of combat with by light speed dashing rings or infinitely Cylopping Rings with no penalty, Combat feels it puts above all else spectacle rather than practicality which is shame, because with more challenge and less button mashy gameplay this could very be the best combat in the series, standing next to Heroes, however as it is it’s sorta just… there.
Cyberspace is one of the aspects of the game that I feel the most mixed on. While I grew to “like” cyberspace, whenever I was liking the stages, they ended just like Sonic Forces. There’s a few lengthy ones sure but they mostly value replay value with getting multiple keys by doing challenges, it’s just the controls are really bad in Cyberspace plus the 4 themes that are reused over and over for all 5 Islands again with level design from better games with better controls and aesthetics makes Cyberspace such a weird aspect for me, they serve as neat little peacebreakers at most and at worst, Sonic Forces 2.
Speaking of the 5 Islands, while i won’t spoil details i found the 4th and 5th Islands to be incredibly disappointing, one of them is insanely short and is basically a story beat island while one is a full fledged island but still has that disappoint aspect, it sorta ruined the game for me since it shows that Sonic games are still falling in the same traps over and over again. This is no more apparent in the polish of the game, the game feels unfinished at points, i already talked about the Pop-In but there’s a layer of jank in this game despite a delay and 5 year development cycle, animations and textures being incredibly inconsistent, 2D Sections in the Open World feel so jarring and janky whenever they happen, especially in Chaos Island, easily the worst and most janky island in the game and the camera in both Cyberspace and the Open World is awful, i know cameras in 3D Sonic games aren’t the best but this is absurdly bad even for those standards, it regularly clips on objects and is way too zoomed out.
I feel the camera issues are at it’s worst with the titan bosses, the minibosses are probably the best part of the game since they’re challenging while providing a bit of variety to the game, but the Titans while in terms spectacle go so hard with it’s music and designs, functional they feel really jank and way too easy, the final boss is just a shitty QTE, even if you play on hard which i did, it’s still the easiest boss in the game and it really soured the sorta solid ending the game has.
Overall Sonic Frontiers is good, and not much else? You might a 6/10 is a bit too high in your opinion with this mostly negative but that’s because, this game shows an insane amount promise and when it works, the game is a blast but as i progressed through the game it was doing the same thing over and over again and especially with the 4th and 5th Islands being so disappointing, I can’t bring myself to say i love Frontiers, nor i can’t say i hate it, it’s just okay. This is the type of game where some people might like it but hate a lot of aspects, and some people might hate this game but like a lot aspects and i think i lie on a middle, though the fact is, despite any opinions on it, everyone agrees there’s a potential for a great follow up or even for some great DLC, i really hope that the average reviews doesn’t mean the game’s will be scrapped but rather improved upon for a great new sequel, i may seem alone on my stance of this game but i feel Frontiers is comparable to Sonic 1, Sonic Rush or Colours Wii where it’s the exact game we needed at the time and while very, very flawed, the foundation is there for a great sequel. All i can hope is that these new Frontiers, won’t be forgotten.