Written by Erik Kubik, kube00 Friday, 10 February 2012 06:00
Sonic has appeared in over 60 games in his life, everything from racing, to party games, to adventure games. He’s had a cameo in close to 150 games. Sonic has made some odd appearances in games such as Shining Force II, the Simpsons Game, Phantasy Star Universe, as well as many others. Sonic games have sold over 80 million copies. Sonic has appeared on a lot of different consoles such as the Genesis, 360, Wii and Master System. He has also appeared on iOS, in the arcade, on the N-Gage, and the Game.com. As the mascot of Sega, Sonic is the most popular character in gaming right behind Mario. Not all of his games have been good, Sonic 3D Blast, Sonic and the Secret Rings are just a few games that were not up to par. How about a breakdown of the top 5 Sonic games?
For starters, the number 5 spot goes to Sonic Colors on the Wii and DS. I really liked this game and felt it was a kickback to the old Sonic Games. It was bright and colorful and playable. It sold almost 3 million units on the Wii. There are power ups in the form of wisps which let Sonic move faster, and transform into a variety of objects. Think of it as Sonic Unleashed meets Sonic Rush as the game has both 2D and 3D parts. Overall, its a fun game.
Number 4 goes to the original Sonic the Hedgehog on Genesis. The blue feisty counter mascot to Mario made his first appearance in 1991. Gamespot.com has described the game as "one of the best platformers of all time" and credited it as a game that "revolutionized the platform genre and gave people a legitimate alternative to Nintendo's fat plumber...” The game showcased the speed and the use physics in a way that gamers had never seen before. The game was the best selling Genesis game of all time with 15 million copies sold. The game went on to become the pack-in game with new Genesis systems and helped popularize the Genesis. This in turn helped Sega control 65% of the console market in the early 1990s. Even today the game sounds and plays wonderfully. Best of all, gamers can pick it up on the Virtual consoles, for iOS devices, XBL, and PSN. This game truly is a classic.
Number 3 is Sonic CD for the ill-fated Sega CD. This game came out in 1993. This game has some of the best music in a Sonic game. Players can time travel within the levels, going to the past and the future. The game introduced the character of Amy. This is a fun Sonic game that has held up pretty well for the time. It was ported to PC in 1996 and was included as part of the Sonic Gems Collection for PS2/GC. Best of all, 2011 saw an enhanced port come to PSN, XBL, iOS, and Android. It's a must have for Sonic fans.
Number 2 is a three way tie between Sonic 2, Sonic 3, and Sonic and Knuckles; all of them were on the Sega Genesis. All of them had great music and design. Sonic 2 was released in 1992, added co-op and multi player, and sold 6 million copies making it the second best selling game on the Genesis and let the Genesis catch up to the SNES sales. Sonic 2 may be best known for the co-op and the spin dash.
Sonic 3 came out in 1994. The game had 3 playable characters inlcuding Knuckles. Tails and Sonic now have unique abilities such as a mid-air shield and Tails can carry Sonic. Players can save their progress which was a handy feature. The game sold a million copies.
Sonic and Knuckles was an add-on cartridge for Sonic 2 and 3, as both those games could be plugged into the cartridge. When used with Sonic 2 or 3 the player can use Knuckles, who can glide, break through and climb walls. The level layouts were a little different and Knuckles could access areas Sonic couldn’t. Overall, these games really helped define and show what the Genesis could do.
Sonic Adventure on Dreamcast is the number 1 Sonic game. This is not the first 3D Sonic game by any means. This game added free roaming 3D game play. The game came out in 1998 and went on to sell 2.5 million copies making it the best selling DC game of all time. The game had 6 playable characters including Amy, Tails, Knuckles, and Sonic. The game was unique since its was split into different parts: action stages which were similar to the old Sonic games; adventure fields where players could free roam; and subgames which had mini games like kart racing. Another unique feature was gamers could raise a Chao pet on their VMU. I was blown away by the graphics at the time since it smoked anything I had seen on the PS1. The game has had an enhanced port to other consoles. The original is on PSN/XBL. As Sonic fans you owe it yourself to get this game and play it.
Honorable mentions go to Sonic Generations which is a fantastic game but I haven’t played enough of it, but I can see it being in the top 5. Other mentions need to go to Sonic Spinball, Sonic Adventure 2, Sonic Drift, Sonic 4 Episode 1, and Sonic Advance 3. Sonic Advance 3 is a nice throwback to the 2D days of the Genesis. If I was going to list a spin-off game -- say either Super Smash Brothers Brawl, Sega All Stars Racing, or Mario and Sonic at the Olympic/London games -- the nod has to go to SSBB followed closely by Sega All Stars Racing. Sonic isn’t going anywhere soon and the games have gotten better and better. Who knows maybe in the near future Sonic will get an RPG game?