Electronic Theatre In-depth Review: Sonic Colours

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Rating: 5.0/5 (1 vote cast)

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            Sonic Colours for Wii received a fairly mixed response throughout its development. While the signs were generally promising, many have thought that each of the releases on Wii starring Sonic the Hedgehog were as such, and yet disappointed with the final result. It’s safe to say that many had become weary of getting their hopes up, and so Sonic Colours was met with reluctant acceptance. Unfairly it know seems, as here of Wii, Sonic Colours presents one of the best adventures Sonic the Hedgehog has delivered in years.

            On Wii, Sonic Colours is effectively a combination of traditional 2D gameplay and the short-lived pseudo-3D of the likes of Crash Bandicoot and other early PlayStation Platform games. Rather then simply holding forward and timing jumps as with many of the previous Wii releases in the franchise, Sonic Colours features some well designed, traditional 2D Platform challengesElectronic Theatre Image which are complimented by the 2.5D segments previously experimented with in the of the likes of Sonic and the Secret Rings. Building some minor physics laws into the familiar gameplay allows Sonic Colours to become more than the simple series of dashing and lock-on attacks that the many Sonic games on the current-generation have been until now, with the Platform action far more satisfying than many of it’s competitors on Wii.

            The arrangement of the two level variations is well balanced, presenting a refreshing change of pace that is certainly more composed than that of the transitions into werehog in the high-definition Sonic Unleashed. The big new ingredient in the formula is of course the Wisps, from which the game gets its name. Collecting the Wisps of varying colour will grant Sonic with a number of different abilities, from being able to drill into soft ground to transforming into a ghostly figure and marching through the level in a similar manner to the giant Mario of New Super Mario Bros.. The different abilities are mostly well judged, gifting Sonic with new ways to travel of a limited invulnerability without becoming overpowered.

            In addition to the main single-player game, Sonic Colours also features a two-player co-operative mode. New levels playable by two players simultaneously are unlocked with progress through the single-player game, and on paper surely sound like a pleasant addition to the game. However, developers Sonic Team have not only been Electronic Theatre Imageinfluenced by New Super Mario Bros. Wii here, but have attempted to borrow the formula wholesale and apply it to the Sonic Colours template, resulting in an unnecessarily messy affair. The mechanics of two sonic characters on one screen simply don’t offer as compelling an experience as New Super Mario Bros. Wii, and is often a frustrating one.

            The graphical quality of Sonic Colours is astounding, delivering one of the most finely crafted visual presentations Wii has played home to in 2010. Brightly coloured backdrops and incredibly smoothly animated characters bring to life a vision of Sonic the Hedgehog that differs to that which has gone before, but not so much as to leave a bitter taste in the mouths of the long-time fans.

            While many have preconceptions of exactly what Sonic Colours will be, to do so is to withhold the chance of a Sonic Team return to form, as this latest title shows that Sonic the Hedgehog does still have what it takes to push the genre forward. Having returned to his roots for Sonic the Hedgehog 4: Episode 1 has obviously taught the development studio a great number of lessons, as Sonic Colours is the first time in nearly a decade that Sonic the Hedgehog has looked like a true contender once again. It may not rewrite the rulebook, but Sonic Colours is one of the best Platform titles Wii has received in a very long time.

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