Sonic Generations Review (PS3/360)

November 10, 2011

PlayStation 3, Reviews, Xbox 360

Sonic Generations is the latest installment in the long lasting Sonic series, this time back to it’s roots. It was developed by Sonic Team and published by SEGA. Is this the Sonic game that faithfuls have been waiting for? Let’s find out.

Story: 4/5

The game kicks off with all of Sonic’s friends prepping a surprise party for him. Upon arriving, Sonic is greeted for his party but a mysterious figure decides to intervene. A creature known as the “Time Eater” captures all of Sonic’s friends, as well as himself, and disperses them through various time locations. Sonic wakes up in a “white space” in which all the areas appears lifeless. In the midst of searching for his friends, he comes across his younger self, Classic Sonic, along with Classic Tails. Time Eater’s actions are what appear to be causing a time paradox and it is up to both, modern and classic, Sonic to venture through their past to find their friends and defeat Time Eater to restore everything back to normal. The story provides to be quite entertaining and feels like you’re watching the classic cartoons that were aired during the 90’s.

Gameplay: 5/5

Sonic games have been no doubtably lacking the last…half a decade or more. Sonic Generations is that return to true form. Remember when Sonic games were all about getting from point A to point B as fast as possible? Well, that’s how this game is. There’s no mandatory playing as other characters in the Sonic universe, there’s no werehog, there’s no carrying a sword or shooting guns. This is Sonic in it’s purest form.

Playing as Classic Sonic will feel extremely familiar to fans of the original titles on the SEGA Genesis as his mechanics are exact. His spin dash that started in Sonic the Hedgehog 2 is back and the aqua shield makes a return. For those who were disappointed with Sonic the Hedgehog 4: Episode 1 (PSN/XBLA/WiiWare/iOS) due to the physics and jumping feeling floaty and distant from what the fans were used to, I am happy to state that Sonic Team made sure that everything here was spot-on to the original mechanics.

Playing as Modern Sonic, those who played any of the recent titles will be familiar to the 3D style mechanics, along with his ability to speed dash and utilize his jumping homing attack on enemies. The one aspect with the previous 3D Sonic titles that was usually a problem was collision detection. I remember playing through Sonic Adventure 1 & 2, Sonic Heroes, Shadow the Hedgehog and Sonic the Hedgehog (2006) and all those games had terrible collision detection in which you would fall through the floor occasionally and die or the homing attack wouldn’t register properly. I can happily say that this issue has been rectified and is no more.

The game is separated into three areas, containing three zones with two acts each and a boss battle at the end. Playing Act 1 of a zone will have the player using Classic Sonic and playing the game old-school style, while Act 2 of a zone will have the player using Modern Sonic. Within each act lies five hidden red coins to collect. Collecting these will unlock artwork littered across 20 years of Sonic history or you will unlock music from previous installments, starting with the original Sonic the Hedgehog for the SEGA Genesis to Sonic Colors for the Wii. Unlocking these songs will allow you to use them in other levels if you ever feel the need to add more nostalgia or just like to change up your tunes.

Upon completing levels, you will unlock challenge missions to complete which are found throughout the “white space.” There are 10 missions for each zone (5 for Classic Sonic, 5 for Modern Sonic) equaling a total of 90 missions to complete. Completing these will reveal a bell to ring in which a blue or golden music note will move around for 20 seconds. Grab it and the reward is yours. The blue notes will unlock new artwork while the golden notes will unlock new music for the game. This certainly adds to a lot of replay value, especially for the avid Sonic fan. You must also complete at least one mission (doesn’t matter which Sonic you play as) to remove the force field around the boss’s key for the area. Collect the three keys and you’ll be able to tackle the nostalgic bosses and advance to the next area.

As far as the game’s length goes, Sonic Generations isn’t the longest game and can be completed in roughly 4-6 hours depending on your skill level. However, this is certainly not a negative aspect thanks to how much fun it is to actually replay the game’s finely crafted levels. The whole experience just felt like the old-school Sonics and early 3D Sonics (Sonic Adventure 1 & 2) that I loved to play. The game provides levels such as Chemical Plant Zone from Sonic 2, Sky Sanctuary Zone from Sonic & Knuckles and City Escape from Sonic Adventure 2 just to name a few. However, the nostalgic aspect of the game is what’s riding the experience. While newcomers to Sonic will enjoy this game thoroughly, long time Sonic fans will be the ones who really get the most out of the game. Even the very first boss had me smiling with nostalgia that should apply to all old-school Sonic fans. There are even secondary bosses from previous Sonic games that make a return such as the final boss battle with Shadow in Sonic Adventure 2. Again, this game was all about bringing many of the great moments over the course of a 20 year history. Sonic Team even went as far as adding the very original Sonic the Hedgehog game as an unlockable game!

The additional neat feature in Sonic Generations, that reminded me of Sonic and the Secret Rings, was the ability to create a skill set. You can purchase skills in which they could make Sonic faster, start with a shield, stop quicker, etc. This added extra incentive to go back and tackle missions with different skill sets and aids those who may be having a hard time. Collect all the Chaos Emeralds and you can equip the Super Sonic skill so that when you reach 50 rings, press the button and you’re good to go through the rest of the stage. This game is literally old-school quality perfection that reminds newcomers and fans what made Sonic one of the best platformers.

Graphics: 4/5

Sonic Generations’ visuals are colorful, bright, vivid and downright refreshing in a generation where most games are ultra-realistic. The environments are all meticulously detailed, both the old-school renditions and modern style. Fans of the classic Sonic games on the SEGA Genesis will instantly remember the layouts of those levels with Classic Sonic while those who were fond of the more modern ones will easily recognize the 3D renditions of them. Classic Sonic animated the same exact way he did two decades ago while the Modern Sonic animates a bit more flashier due to his movement style. The only complaint here is that there are occasional framerate drops, nothing terrible, but noticeable. Also, it takes some adjustment to play this game in 30 FPS as opposed to the silky 60 FPS that a good amount (not all) of the Sonic games had.

Sound: 4/5

Wait, is this a Sonic game without terrible voice-acting? For the most part, yes. Last year’s Sonic Colors started that tradition and this time around, the same new voice actors are in place. Also, the soundtrack is really energetic, whether it’s hearing the classic tunes playing or the remixes to them, this is a game that needs to have the sound cranked up. When you reach Chemical Plant Zone with Classic Sonic, you will immediately recognize that it’s the same amazing tune that’s imprinted in our heads. Once tackling this level with Modern Sonic, be ready for a really intense remix of the song that will get your adrenaline going. The nostalgia doesn’t stop there though. All the sound effects from the old Sonic titles return and once again, will put a smile on any Sonic fan’s face to be reminded of the good ol’ days.

Overall Score: 17/20 = 8.5 out of 10

Sonic Generations is an excellent reminder as to what made Sonic games an absolute blast to play. The mechanics in place here are incredibly well done and the game reaps of nostalgia. For those who have been hesitant on Sonic games lately and avoided them, I can safely say this is Sonic’s return to true form. Don’t let this game fly past your radar amongst the other AAA titles out this season. Sonic Team has certainly put a lot of work into trying to get back their original Sonic fans and this is the step in the right direction. Make no mistake, Sonic Generations is an excellent platformer that will provide gamers that nostalgic feeling of what it was like to play games during a simpler time.


+ Colorful, Vivid Visuals

+ Great Soundtrack

+ Classic Sonic plays exactly like the SEGA Genesis era

+ Modern Sonic gameplay is extremely polished

+ Unlockables provide a great deal of replay value

+ Original Sonic the Hedgehog (1991) is an Unlockable Game


– Occassional framerate issues

– Some characters voices aren’t as well done as Sonic’s


About Glacier928

Marcello is the founder, creator and editor-in-chief of GamersXtreme. His dedication and passion shows as he keeps gamers informed with daily news articles and provides truthful, honest opinions on all gaming related news. Having experience with video game design, as well as over 20 years of gaming under his belt, Marcello has always had a massive interest in the gaming society. Originally, he created GamersXtreme in the style of a magazine back in middle school. Today, he has taken what was created as a basic premise and has evolved it into the site it is today.

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4 Comments on “Sonic Generations Review (PS3/360)”

  1. Marchetto427 Says:

    Wow Sonic is back! Nice Review guys I am actually going to purchase this for my Ps3 tomorrow! Also I am very eager to read your sites Call of Duty Modern Warfare 3 review and your SKYRIM review!


    • Glacier928 Says:

      Thanks! Sonic Generations really is a great reminder of the old-school days.

      Expect our Modern Warfare 3 review tonight! It’s the lengthiest one but also has two entirely different views on the game, which should provide for a great read! Thanks again for the feedback! 🙂


  2. Mitch Says:

    Why cant Sega allow a patch for 60 fps for the ps3 and 360 by getting the person to install the game on there hard drive


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