It seems as if Sega in continuing their experimentation with one of the most iconic video game characters ever. I’m of course talking about Sonic the Hedgehog. We’ve seen him with his amazing speed, but we’ve also seen him inherit magic powers and become a Werehog. Sega needs a formula for the series that works, and I have that formula.
Speed, Speed, and More Speed
Take Sonic Generations as the prime example for this one. When you play a Sonic game, you do not want him running slowly like in Sonic 3D Blast. You want to break the sound barrier and see how quickly you can finish the course. Sonic Generations does all of that, plus connects the best of 2D and 3D platforming. If you want a fan-pleasing Sonic game, it better have him leaving dust clouds behind his footsteps.
Have a Lack of Change
If you want to change the games to make them unique, that is fine, but don’t change everything about Sonic that we know and love. The Sonic Boom series is guilty of this, changing the gameplay, power-ups, voices, even the size and shapes of their characters. It’s not necessary, and it’s not wanted. If the goal is to try to appeal to a newer and younger audience, it isn’t working. Great formulas for games in the 90’s will still be great formulas now. The Legend of Zelda series doesn’t change their formula that much, and look how much everyone loves that series still.
Smooth and Crisp
If you’ve ever had the unfortunate chance of playing Sonic the Hedgehog (2006), then you know what I mean when I say Sonic must run smoothly. That game has nothing but mechanical issues that ruin the game, and Sonic doesn’t even run fast. It’s games like Sonic Generations and Sonic Colors that (while not perfect) felt crisper and more control friendly, helping the gamer feel comfortable with going lightning fast while dodging enemies and reaching the goal.
Bring Back the Chao Garden
Sonic Adventure and especially Sonic Adventure 2 both featured the Chao Garden as a side activity to the story, and it really took shape in Sonic Adventure 2. Training your Chao from birth and raising it so it becomes a karate master is one of the best things ever, and now it’s gone. The gardens are only mentioned but never actually seen in later games. It’s a great bonus feature for fans to enjoy, and I’d love to see its return.
Listen to the Fans
If it is one thing Sega can take from all the blunders of their Sonic games, is that they have some of the most loyal fans out there. Through our complaining and rants, we are still ready to try the next Sonic game, even if it is a bust. I’ve been a fan of the series since its original release back in 1991, and I’m still a die-hard fan till this day. But Sega, please listen to us. We don’t want Sonic waving around a sword, we don’t want Shadow shooting a gun, and we want a game that helps us remember and brings back the classic Sonic that everyone knows and loves. Take a moment and really listen to the fans. The sales of the games speak for themselves, and I want Sonic to hang around for the next twenty years, not just be a dust cloud that was left behind.