Sonic advance review!
Hey guys, it's Razor-987 here with another review, and today I will be reviewing Sonic advance which is a great game released in 2002 for the gameboy advance, and I must say that this game really makes sonic and the gang look better than ever before like they did on the genesis! I had a great time playing this game and I am sure that you will too if you give it a try and we will see how it compares with prior sonic games, so without further a do,let's get on to the review shall we?
As always, I want to take care of the game play first and for most because it is one of the most important aspects in the game. So basically, Sonic and his friends go through various zones in the game to prevent Eggman from getting the 7 chaos emeralds and taking over the South Island. You can play as 4 characters, either from Sonic, Knuckles, Tails, and Amy who all have their own unique moves which are basically the same as they were in Sonic 3. The gameplay is also pretty much the same as always, you jump on some enemies, collect rings, beat up the boss at the end of each level and free the animals afterwards. So there isn't really anything that different about the gameplay other than the fact that you can choose which of the 4 characters you want to play the game through and then see the alternate endings for each one. I think they really could of changed the gameplay a bit more from the same casino and water levels and all the other ones we have really grown to love. I just think they could've changed it up a bit more, but that is just me, you may not feel the same way though. Now enough of my babbling and onto the review for good!
I am not going to lie, the graphics in this game are pretty good, even though they are slightly smaller than when they were on the genesis, sonic and all the sprites as well as the background of every level are vibrantly colorful and very detailed. Another plus to this game's graphics are that they look more smooth and flow better since they are less pixilated looking than before. Aside from that I think the graphics of this game are great and are no exception to the great graphics that all sonic games have. The only gripe I would have is that if you are actually playing it on a gameboy advance, it looks pretty dark and you really have to strain to see it very well, so I personally think sonic games are meant to be played on a bigger screen. But if you are on vizzed, you have nothing to worry about. Overall the graphics of this game are pretty good and they make sonic look better than ever before. Just starting off in the Neo Green Zone, you are introduced to this cool tropical beach like background and then advance into an area that looks a lot like the emerald green zone that we are all familiar with. I would definitely say that the graphics area strong point in this game along with the sound as well, it takes a different and unique approach with the graphics and for the most part, I am pretty satisfied with it.
This is probably the strong point of this game, anyone who is a fan of sonic could probably hum off a sonic tune with ease if they wanted to. As for the sound in this game, they have really come a long way and the sounds of simple things in sonic games like jumping off of a spring for example sounds a lot better and a lot less cheesy than before. Other simple noises like when you are going against eggman in one of his contraptions, you can here the impact and the damage and sputtering being dealt to his machine and you can also hear it falling apart. Little things like this that would normally go unnoticed all add up to make this game's sound and overall enjoyment much better and more appealing to play. Another thing in this game is that you can actually hear the character's dialog when they are speaking pretty clearly as well. As far as music goes, it is nice in it's own right, but it just isn't as memorable as the catchy original sonic tunes that we are used to hearing. The music also alternates in mod between each sage like in the casino night zone it is more upbeat and joyful which matches the actual setting of the stage itself and it really captures what it might actually sound like, thus it is more realistic in the mood that is being set in each stage. Nevertheless though I scored the sound/ music an 8 overall, I think it is pretty good and it certainly matches up to the standards of sound and music in prior sonic games.
This game is fairly addicting like most sega genesis games are, however this game has one major flaw that contributes to the reason why I didn't give it a higher score in this criteria, and that is the bonus stages. There aren't any in this game and that is a pretty big aspect of the original sonic games, so it is a bit of a disappointment that this game doesn't have them. Nevertheless though, would I consider this to be a game you pick up and play everyday? Maybe not, I would say that this game is nice to play every once in a while for fun, but maybe not as much as an addicting game like super smash bros brawl for example. There are 6 major zones that you traverse through in this game and you can play as 1 of 4 characters, either Sonic, Tails, Knuckles and Amy, so if you get bored of playing one character, you can choose to play someone else. Once you complete the game with one of those characters you will receive a game ending which is different for all of them. I think that is a pretty cool and unique part to this game. Another cool thing is that you can take care of and raise a chao in this game which is pretty cool, but it is only 1 this time as compared to being able to raise multiple chao in sonic advance 2. So overall I scored the game a 7 out of 10 for addictiveness which isn't too bad considering that this game does have its mix of pros and cons when compared to other sonic games.
There isn't really much tot he story or plot in this game, it is basically the same thing as it was before, Eggman looks for the 7 chaos emeralds to commence his plan to take over the world, but he will have to put up with sonic and his friends who plan to put a stop to his plans for good. That is basically all it is as far as the story goes in this game, it is relatively simple and kind of repetitive, I really think they should've taken more time on the game if it meant that they would change the plot up a bit. I think it is kind of a waste that it turned out being almost exactly the same as before with the exception of a few minor details here and there. I would've expected something different, new and exciting from a new sonic game, so this is a little disappointing that the plot is still pretty much the same. So because of that, I ended up rating the story a 4 out of 10, I really hate to score it so low, but it could've been double what it is now if they had changed or twisted it up a bit to make it more exciting and unique, nevertheless it gets a 4, I wish I could of scored it better, but that is all I can give it since the storyline barely changed at all.
On the other hand of this game however, it does offer a decent amount of content and stuff to do, you can play as each of the 4 characters, either sonic, knuckles, tails or Amy and you can see the ending that follows with each one of them respectively. Then of course, as I mentioned earlier, you can raise your own chao in the chao garden which is a nice plus to add to the game. You can also buy things for it and accessorize it however you want, but in order to do so you will have to earn rings to buy those accessories, you can do so by either running through a stage or getting them from one or two simple mini games. Overall I think this game offers a decent amount of stuff for you to do and to keep you busy, it isn't a game that you should beat in 5 minutes, but on the other hand it is enough to keep you busy for a day or 2 depending on how fast you play through it. So overall, I scored it a 7 out of 10 because there is enough to keep you occupied for a decent amount of time, from the fun, unique and colorful stages to the mini games, to raising your own chao, there are quite a few options in this game to keep you busy!
I wouldn't say that this game is overwhelmingly difficult, compared to other sonic games, this one really isn't that much harder in my opinion. However, I will say that it is important for you to be cautious of your surroundings because you could end up being so focused on quickly finishing the stage that you could pass an important platform or area that leads you to the next and you will have to go back to find it. So while speed is important, it isn't everything, you have to keep an eye out for these sort of things so you won't end up making a mistake that will cost you valuable time. Control wise it is really simple and it shouldn't give you any trouble, they are also very responsive which is another important key factor as far as controls go. The bosses aren't that hard either to be honest, there are maybe a few tough bosses in this game that are tough, but not enough to the point where it should discourage you from playing any further. If this is your first time playing then I would expect you to find it a little tricky at first but that is normal, just keep on playing through it and you will pick up on it eventually. Altogether though I think it is just the right level of difficulty to where it challenges you enough. Those are the kinds of games I like because they are more memorable and they really test you more and in the end you get more out of it than you would if it was super easy and un challenging.. So overall I scored this game's difficulty a 6 out of 10.
All in all I think this game was pretty good and I must say that of all the cool things about this game that I really enjoyed, I really liked the graphics and music in this game, and they were a unique twist on the classic feeling that we get from the original sonic graphics and tunes, but every once in a while I think a twist on a game is a good thing and can really make you grow to like and appreciate the game even more, at least for me in this case. I had a great time playing this game and I am sure you will too. This is definitely the game for you sonic fans out there! I hope you can enjoy it just as much as I did! It is worth your time to come and try this game out because you might just like it...
So what did you think of my review? Please feel free to comment and provide constructive criticism on it as well so that I can become a better reviewer. Hope you liked it, thanks for reading!