When I first started playing Sonic Forces I was extremely excited after the perfection of Sonic Mania to have another game starring the blue hedgehog again on my shiny new Nintendo Switch. This time converting the Sonic to 3D and from the maker of Colours and Generations (2 of my favourite new Sonic games) the anticipation level was high. Then the game started, Sonic got captured and I was forced to make a customer character that would be the main focus of the game moving forward. I was so engraged at the sub par graphics and awful designs of the custom characters, I just wanted to play Sonic, that’s why I bought this game. After I got through the first customer character level and Sonic was rescued I was finally able to play as my favourite blue hedgehog again and this is mixed up throughout the rest of the game with other side characters like Shadow.
The game revolves around Sonic team, in a big to stop Eggman (Dr Robotnik!) who has recruited all of Sonic’s baddest foes including Chaos, Metal Sonic, Shadow and Zavok. Together the team can succesfully take down Sonic and pose a real threat to the blue hedgehog and his team of heroes. When Eggman rips through the world corrupting various levels and worlds, you must play as Sonic (modern or classic) as well as your custom avatar that after I got over my initial hatred, I grew to enjoy.
Gameplay wise modern sonic has a third person view with jumping and aiming for beating enemies, while classic Sonic goes side scrolling with beautiful graphics with a noticeable upgrade from Sonic Mania. The levels are beautifully detailed with classic levels like Green Hill Zones and Casino Zone have a dark tone and noticeably destroyed by Eggman’s goons. The new levels are very apolcalyptic and look amazing on both handheld and docked mode on the Nintendo Switch. The controls are extremely responsive and I only had one point where I noticed a lag usig my pro controller and missed a few jumps. It was only at one point during the game and once I switched (ha!) to handheld mode the problem went away. Apart from this the game runs smoothly.
Celebrating Sonic’s 25th year of existence with two games is how I wanted to spend 2017 and I am so glad that we have two iterations of Sonic to spend time with. Sonic Team has done an outstanding job of delivering fan service as well as propelling the series forward. In an era which Sega could easily make a Sonic Adventure 3 (seriously though how great would that be!) instead they have chosen to make a new game and continually improve the series and the characters of Sonic forward.
Overall Sonic Forces is a game that fans will love, much time and care has been given to deliver both Sonic’s and the look spectacular on the Sega’s new engine Hedgehog 2 delivering crisp and crystal clear graphics with perfectly timed controls. The blend between pop music and game soundtrack was superb, it is worth noting that the London Symphony Orchestra were brought in to play some of the music in levels and the quality shows in these sequences. Sonic Forces delivers the perfect fanfare experience and helps move the series forward, in its entirety and after getting over the shock of the custom character implementation, the game comes into its own and delivers another great Sonic title.
Sonic Forces is in stores now on PS4, Xbox One, PC and Nintendo Switch
Review by Alaisdair Leith
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