Do you know what I don’t like about retro games during the NES era? You would have to start ALL OVER once you get a game over. To go through the same slow levels over and over again feels just dull and repetitive sometimes. This is how Yuji Naka felt when playing Super Mario Bros. He wanted the game to be faster and Sega wanted a mascot. So after a lot of brainstorming including a rabbit, an armadillo, and a certain man who is later used as Dr. Eggman. But the character they stuck with was Mr. Needlemouse who was a hedgehog.
On June 23, 1991, Sonic the Hedgehog was released bundled with the Sega Genesis. Thanks to this, the Genesis sold about 15 million copies. I recall getting this game when I ordered Sonic Adventure at Gamestop. For some reason, I accidentally got the Genesis cartridge of Sonic the Hedgehog. So, is this game way past cool? Or is it no good?
Note: I will be reviewing the original Genesis version *throws GBA version in the trash*
The evil Dr. Ivo Robotnik has been kidnapping animals and trapping them into robots. As Sonic the Hedgehog, you must stop Robotnik’s scheme and save the animals.
That is basically the story. Quite lacking but at least there is a story in the game. I give it a C+.
Sonic’s gameplay is quite simple. As you run, you go faster and faster and the only other thing Sonic can do is jump. This simplicity of controls makes it quite easy to learn. I love running around very fast through the game and saving flickies by destroying robots on your way. If you reach the goal of the act/level with at least 50 rings, you will see a giant ring. Go through it and it takes you to a bonus level where you need to get the chaos emerald. These bonus levels aren’t really fun as it is very easy for you to accidentally exit them. Basically, you are in this little maze where Sonic is falling in his ball form. You need to rotate the maze and get him to the Chaos Emerald. If you fall into the exits, the bonus level is over. I’m not a fan of the bonus levels in this game.
One of the main problems with this game, however, is the level design. While Green Hill Zone (the first level) is one of the best stages in the entire game, the levels afterward are quite sub-par. The first level allows you to roam freely and test your speed skills but the other levels are very restrictive and linear. I really wish the game allowed you to experiment with your speed just like the first level. Overall, I think the game had the right idea but executed it poorly. I give it a B-.
I really like the soundtrack for this game. From Green Hill Zone to the Star Light Zone, the songs in this game are great. I give it a solid A.
To conclude, this game is fine. It had a good idea of what it was trying to accomplish but, after the first level, it was poorly executed. What saves this game is its amazing music. I give it a 6.8/10.
At a Glance: Sonic the Hedgehog (Genesis)
Summary: The evil Dr. Robotnik has captured the animals and encased them in robots. Free the creatures and defeat the evil doctor.
Price: $4.99 (Gamestop)
Systems: Sega Genesis, Gameboy Advance, Nintendo 3DS, etc.
Release Date: June 23, 1991