After twenty years in action, it’s clear that Sonic hasn’t slowed down a bit. The first entry in the Sonic 4 saga was a major success. Sega said they have listened to the fans feedback and have been hard at work making sure they recapture that same spirit of fun in Episode II. I’m happy to report they did an outstanding job and fans are in for some real fun with Sonic’s latest venture. Sonic the Hedgehog 4: Episode II is a 2D platformer available for the XBLA and PSN. The game starts off a few months after the events of Episode I at Little Planet, where if you recall the Sonic CD game took place.
Hearing that Little Planet has finally returned, Doctor Eggman eagerly hops back into action and thus starts his next attempt in going after the spiked blue hedgehog hero once more. Elsewhere, old robot rival Metal Sonic has returned for his own revenge as well. The evil scientist and the metal hedgehog team up giving Sonic two villains to contend with. To even the odds however, Sonic recruits his buddy Tails to help him face this new threat and speed around the Little Planet once more and save it from the threat of total destruction.
Gameplay and Game Mechanics
Whether you are playing alone, or with a friend locally or online, get ready to experience a high dose of old school nostalgia. Episode II features an all new game engine which brings updated physics and a new graphical style that is rich in color and detail. This engine and physics overhaul also promises physics that are closer to how it was on the Mega Drive/Genesis. It really takes you back in time when 2D platformers dominated the market with their simple fun factor. Being no surprise, the game is an absolute blast. The controls are solid and responsive. Longtime fans and newcomers alike will be blazing through the detailed stages in no time.
Episode II features aquatic chambers, snowy mountains, huge castles and deserts to blaze a path through in your venture to put an end to Doctor Eggman and Metal Sonic. Sonic and Tails can perform a special ability known as Tag Action. The player can perform special combo moves allowing them to spin, fly, and swim. Homing Attack has also been added, just as it was in Episode I. Tails can fly instead of doing a Homing Attack.
Sega offers players who have purchased Sonic the Hedgehog 4 Episode I the exclusive chance to experience Episode Metal, a special unlockable story available to anyone who owns both titles on the same platform. Lead one of our hero’s greatest foes, Metal Sonic, across four reworked Acts from Episode I to learn more about how he survived the events at the end of Sonic CD. This is a great bonus that fans should really enjoy.
Sega delivers as promised with this second episode. Fans will eat this release up and appreciate the amount of content it encompasses. Everything from the bright colorful graphics to the revamped controls make this nostalgic arcade title a must have. If you’ve been on the fence regarding picking this up, do yourself a huge favor and grab this one today.
Review Rating: 9/10