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Sonic Lost World Review

There are times I feel sorry for gamers just starting their life long obsession with gaming, as even with all their COD's and Skylanders, they may never know beauty of a truly good Sonic game. The older among us will constantly harp along about just how revolutionary and great Sonic was all those years ago, but even with all of the compilations and greatest hits games out there as proof, the aged graphics just turn them off. That’s not to say SEGA have tried now for a long time to rekindle the once great series, but with all of their fiddling it just seems to saturate the classics even more, thus leading us to yet another release, this time a Nintendo Wii U and 3DS exclusive in Sonic: Lost World.

We join Sonic and Tails mid adventure, yet again chasing after Dr Eggman who is making a hasty exit in his Egg Mobile where in a last ditch attempt to get Sonic of his case jettisons his cargo, a crate full of critters. Being the heroes that they are, Sonic and Tails cease their attack on Dr Eggman and try to save the crate, but in turning their backs, get attacked, sending them into a tailspin through the clouds, which by chance happens to be home of the long forgotten land, Lost Hex. With their luck still on the down, it appears that Eggman has already discovered the misplaced land, his evil machinations already in action with him creating a giant machine to syphon power from the land and holding captive the Deadly Six, a group of villainous inhabitants that may well be a match for Sonic and Tails. The story will then take Sonic through a variety of different environments on Lost Hex, chasing not only after Dr Eggman but even teaming up with his nemesis in trying to stop the Deadly Six.

As with any Sonic game you will start in familiar territory, with lush green lands full of loops and speed jumps, gently introducing you to the new world, which in reality is pretty much like every other world Sonic has ever found himself on. In Sonic: Lost World there is an attempt to add a little variety to the game, with Sonic unlocking more levels as he proceeds, be it by freeing creatures or just defeating a boss. Each of the levels have been split into one of three distinct styles, the classic 2D view, a 3D tunnel mode akin to the bonus levels of the classic Sonic 2 and a 3D platform world that has more than a few nods towards the Mario Galaxy games. Sadly, though the levels have a familiar look and feel when compared to those classics I name checked, the game falls very flat as yet again it seems SEGA have forgotten how to deal with Sonics speed. In the 3D tunnels it works the best, offering breakneck speeds through tunnels that twist and turn and throw Sonic all over the place, but with every thrilling second there is an equally frustrating moment, be it an awkwardly placed enemy or jump pads that you will miss, draining your lives very quickly. Where we all know Sonic for his speed, when taken away he turns into a very sub-standard platform hero, especially during the 3D adventure levels. These take place across huge 3D levels, with Sonic able to defy gravity and twisting and turning the viewpoint of the world, opening up different paths and maybe a few secrets along the way, however the goals are that same as every other level, get to the end and due to the frustrating controls, it is something you would rather do quickly.

As mentioned earlier, there are moments of pure joy when everything gels together, hitting high speeds, coming out of loops and then jumping on a group of Badniks (which after all these years are exactly the same), but more often than not the game will just drive you to the edge of frustration with controls that are overly confusing and more often than not, does not work when you need them to. Long gone is the simplistic beauty of the originals, now you have a vast array of moves that will more often cost your ring stash or a life than save you. Along with his signature spin power that you charge up and a double jump Sonic has also taken pretty much everything that has come before, with a sprint button, drill jump, a kick, wall running and of course the lock on attack that refuses to lock on or will just send you spinning into the abyss. Then you also have the return of the Wisps from the Colours games; these little aliens reside in jars until you smash them open and use their powers by tapping the WiiU control pad; some, like the laser are not really crucial and act as a bypass through some of the more difficult areas, others like the musical note are indispensable, transforming Sonic into a musical note to get across large areas with you tapping the screen to make him dance through the air, avoiding hazards. Overall the Wisps are more of an afterthought and never really change the way you play the game, sadly a missed opportunity as there are a couple like the miner and underwater Wisps really go a little deeper into the 3D adventure worlds and allow more variety but they are hardly used. From still images and even the videos you will have seen of Sonic: Lost World, the game looks fantastic, everything whizzing by at a decent speed, sadly what you don’t see is the controls, or more specific, the rage face of the person trying to control Sonic.

Though some may feel I have been overly harsh on Sonic: Lost World, as I mentioned earlier, I have such great fondness of the original games to which I will still play from time to time. Though the world has moved on and granted use even more fantastic graphics, sometimes adding all this to the mix does not make a game any better. In the more simpler of levels, namely the 3D tunnels, the game rekindles some of that classic magic, but then SEGA have thrown so much into this game, it saturates what was any good and ends up being yet another average Sonic game that will be forgotten about by the time the next one is released.


+ Looks great
+ A high standard of cut scenes
+ When it gets going, the speed is intense


- The slower adventure areas
- Sonics controls
- Difficulty is all over the place

Edited On 25 Oct, 2013

( 4 )
Loli-Nox-Tan's avatar
Loli-Nox-Tan 3 years ago
Am I the only one who doesn't really like the 2D Sonic games?
Dead's avatar
Dead 3 years ago
Harsh review, personally I enjoyed things slowed down a bit and didn't have any problems with the controls, there are some horrendous difficulty spikes towards the end of the game though.
Robichoico's avatar
Robichoico 3 years ago
Didn't really care much for older Sonic tbh. He was and always will be under Mario's shadow. But honestly. Played this game until I got to one point then honestly couldn't look at the game the same way again. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NyakGvhyFyg
Anonymous user's avatar
Ahmad 3 years ago
@Robichoico While that might be true now. You cannot deny that there was a golden period where Mario was pretty much Sonic's bi**h. One the game though, I thought it was good. Not Generations good, but It was more than playable. I like the focus on exploration and the stunts you could do with the parkour system. And the visual / rock solid 60 fps make this game the best looking thing on the Wii U yet. However, while the game might be good, I think it has several head-scratching design choice that would just make you question what Sonic Team was on in the making of this. Now, while the game itself might feel distinct from Mario Galaxy. I can't help but feel the developers WANTED people to think that it was like Galaxy, mostly in the small details like Mario esque clock. Which turns the game from a game merely inspired by the legendary Mario Galaxy series to Mario's creepy stalker. If you're willing to look past that though, and you're a platforming fanatic, give this game a try.

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