The “Blue-Blur” can only go so fast

Sonic Forces disappoints

By Jarvis Byrd Jr. Staff Writer

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(Image from segabits.com)

Sega set up a new project that was announced in Tokyo Joypolis with an upcoming teaser of new Sonic game known as “Project Sonic 2017” back in June 2016. The trailer showed “Modern Sonic” and “Classic Sonic” previously seen in the fan-favorite “Sonic Generations.” A year later, Sega and Sonic Team officially titled the game as “Sonic Forces,” releasing the game Nov. 7.

“Sonic Forces” sets the theme with a great soundtrack as expected in a main-line Sonic game. Tracks like “Fist Bump” and “Infinite’s Theme” by Tomoya Ohtani continue to impress fans even through their high expectations.

The biggest innovation in “Sonic Forces” is having the ability to create a custom character. This allows everyone’s fan fiction dreams of being in the Sonic Universe to come true. Custom characters build off the Wisps mechanics initially seen in 2010s “Sonic Colors.”

This time though, the player is limited to one Wisp per stage, giving the custom character abilities that make every stage unique for replay. Some Wisps give players the chance to jump onto much higher ledges that aren’t accessible otherwise, while others make it easier to go through enemies. Arguably, the most practical Wisp is the lightning Wisp, which allows the character to quickly speed through an area by collecting rings.

However, rings serve no purpose in “Sonic Forces” due to unlimited lives and no game over screens, which also isn’t an issue because of the unbelievably short stages that last around two minutes at most, and easy to beat bosses. This makes the game feel easier than any other Sonic game before.

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Sonic Forces has great, innovative ideas for the series, but falls short in execution. The custom character is a great idea, but with limited gameplay and poor level design, it is almost worthless. (Image from soniccluster.com)

“Classic Sonic” and “Modern Sonic’s” gameplay is near identical to what was seen in “Sonic Generations.” Unfortunately, “Classic Sonic” is slowed down a lot due to the poor level design. “Modern Sonic” continues to use the Boost mechanic that premiered in 2008’s “Sonic Unleashed.”

“Sonic Forces’” story is also the least interesting in the series. Dialogue is poorly written and the plot moves faster than Sonic himself. This could have been a great story about a rebellion against the great Eggman Empire. Instead, gamers were given a rushed mess with a half-baked plot.

In total, “Sonic Forces” has 30 short stages that take at most three hours to
complete. Gameplay feels stiff compared to recent 3D Sonic games. Titles like “Sonic Generations” or even the Wii U’s “Sonic Lost World” feel much better.

For $40, this is unacceptable and feels like a total rip-off.