There have been some great Sonic games, both commercially and critically. Games like the original Genesis trilogy come to mind. Sonic Generations. Sonic Colors. Sonic Adventure 1 and 2. (Any) Sonic smartphone game. The Sonic Advance series. The list goes on and on. But although there are many successful Sonic games, there are several that aren’t really all that successful in the commercial world or with fans. Sonic 06 comes to mind. Sonic Lost World, both Wii U and 3DS versions. Sonic Boom, both Wii U and 3DS versions. Sonic and the Black Knight. And we also have Shadow the Hedgehog. It’s not technically a Sonic game since it’s all about Shadow, but it’s from the same universe and Sonic is in it, so close enough. This is a review for that game.
Like I said, this game definitely falls into the not all that successful Sonic games list. And that’s for good reason I’d say. I’ve had an issue with the latest Sonic games having pathetic cutscenes and cheesiness. Some of the moments have made me facepalm so hard that I wonder why I even bother with current Sonic games. Shadow did things completely reverse of what things are like now, with serious cutscenes and a serious story. That I can appreciate. But the game isn’t the typical Sonic game for two major reasons: you (can) use guns to kill your enemies and there are cuss words. Nothing that’s over the top as far as the worst cussing you’ve heard in other current games, mind you, but when you consider the series and the history that lead to Shadow you’ll see that it’s over the top big time. An occasional damn or dammit isn’t all that bad, but it seems like Shadow says it every time he gits hit or dies. Again, it’s not as bad as current games by any stretch, but for Sonic it’s a bit out there.
But it’s not all bad! One thing I really do enjoy about this game is that you get to pick what you want to do. If you want to be good you can be good, if you want to be neutral you can, and if you want to be bad you can do that as well. Each level has an objective and you get to pick which direction you’re going to go in, which results in a completely different game depending on your choices, which I’m a major fan of. That’s the one major positive that this game offers. I love choices that change the game and this is featured pretty strongly in Shadow the Hedgehog. I have the Xbox version, which I play on my Xbox 360, and the game plays just fine. The graphics aren’t bad, and it feels like a Sonic game overall as you play. A very different Sonic game, but a Sonic game nonetheless. You get rings, beat bad guys (depending on how you play), a friend can plug in another controller and help as a support character, and things like this. It has a lot of promise in some ways, but falls very flat in others.
Likes: Choices choices, a friend can play with you, multiple endings to go with the choices.
Dislikes: The cussing which feels almost too intentionally over the top, can’t primarily play as Sonic (I know, not his game, but still!), a bit too serious.
I love serious games, and I’d rather have a serious Sonic game than a jokey one like the last several, but this game took it all too far. I don’t have many complaints other than the over the top cussing really. But that alone makes me facepalm, because a great Sonic game never needed it before and hasn’t needed it since. A fail on their part, but the choices and how that plays into the game I think is awesome! I have to say, through it all, I give this a 7/10. It’s not the worst Sonic game I’ve played and the alternate endings will give you something to aim for well after you’ve beaten it the first time.