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    A few times on the Special Stage I have jumped for the ring bonus that’s over the pi and whilt I have hit it, the game acts like I’ve just fell down the pit and I get a lovely revolving aerial view of the stage until it kicks me out. It’s probably the only glitch I’ve come across so far. I do have a completed Sonic file with all the medals but only 4 emeralds and am now trying again with Knuckles but I do intend going back to the Sonic file and finding all the emeralds and seeing what Super Sonic is like.


    Sonic Mania needs to be Sonic’s Back to Earth.


    It’s far too good for that.


    I want a Sonic Series XII.


    I think Sonic 1 is very much the first series of Red Dwarf and Sonic CD the second. Sonic 2 acts as the III-IV era and Sonic & Knuckles is V, with Sonic Adventure playing the part of series VI.

    Not sure what would be VII but Sonic ’06 would have to be VIII.

    BtE would probably be Generations or something.


    Love this game – just finished marathoning through it with all characters over the last weekend. Feels pretty spot-on compared to the Sonic games of old, and I like that the level layouts are more flowing similar to Sonic 2’s, but with the expanse and hidden secrets of Sonic 3 & Knuckles. I’d been a little annoyed at the announcement we’d be getting reimaginings of existing Zones, but the team have snuck enough new stuff into them that a few of the Acts do feel more like a new Zone with an old coat of paint, so to speak.

    Presentation-wise, the Zones are all looking pretty slick – the reworked graphics for the returning stages look nice and slick with some very heavy updates to some (Stardust Speedway Act 2, I’m looking at you!), though the real stars of the show are the all-new Zones – let’s have a full game of these if there’s a sequel please, SEGA…! Music-wise, Tee Lopes has done wonders with the soundtrack, with some rather funky remixes for the returning stages and some nicely funky tunes for the new – even if a couple do lack a little of the ‘hummability’ of the older tunes, they’re still nicely memorable and have been bouncing around my head in work for the last week or two. I do wish they’d been able to add transition animations between all the Zones – looks like they ran out of time in that regard, as some have them and others don’t, and a few leftover graphics found within the game suggest a couple might have been abandoned in-progress. Hope they get the opportunity to add in the missing ones and patch them in during an update or something.

    Story-wise, the Hard Boiled Heavies are a pretty charming addition to the canon – love the idea of Eggrobos which have developed individual personalities due to the Phantom Ruby’s influence. Some of the story leaps are a little confusing in the later stages – mostly due to those few missing Zone transitions – but overall after reading the manual first I had a pretty good idea of what was going down as I played through the game.

    The new Special Stages are probably my favourite in the series – they have a simple easy-to-pick-up premise, a good difficulty curve and the increased control the player has compared to some of the previous Special Stages means that once you’ve practiced you can really experiment with trying to figure out the most efficient ways to run (and shortcut) through the stages on repeat play-throughs. On my first run (Sonic & Tails) I only managed two Emeralds before the end of the game; by run three (Tails alone) I was able to get all the Emeralds by the end of Flying Battery Act 1.

    Blue Spheres are as frustrating as ever, but at the same time it’s so satisfying to finally crack a stage you’ve been stuck on! Love the updated graphics, though I do think they break the pacing a little as a Bonus Stage – for any sequel, I’d prefer to see some Sonic 3 & Knuckles style bonus stages that are a little more quick-fire but can earn you rings/shields to take back to the level. I like the idea of using Blue Sphere to unlock extras, though, and I’m not sure how you’d work that in without being able to access the stages directly from within the main game.

    Speaking of which, still not really had a chance to delve into any of the unlockable extras yet – something to do next time I have some free time…!

    Overall a great game and a love letter to what made the classic Mega Drive Sonic games work so well. A couple of small presentational niggles, but overall a great continuation of the series and a worthy successor to Sonic 3 & Knuckles. The only thing which stops it being pretty much perfect in my estimation is those few missing transitions, and reimagining past stages – something an all-original sequel could easily fix…! (Hint, hint, SEGA… because we know you all read the G&T forums, haha. ; P)


    Agh, can’t edit that post for whatever reason. One other thing I meant to add – I do think the Flying Battery boss was a bit unintuitive on the first run-through – it’s not that clear when it’s solid and when it’s not, and it’s a bit jarring that the cockpit’s completely intangible rather than just bouncing you back or something. Solidifying the cockpit and armouring it up so it’s clear you can’t damage it, and darkening/moving the machine into the background slightly when it’s intangible would fix the issues I had with this. It’s fine on repeat playthroughs once you know what to do, but it breaks a lot of rules established throughout the rest of the series as to when you can/can’t damage things which can be a little confusing first time around!


    I do wish they’d been able to add transition animations between all the Zones – looks like they ran out of time in that regard, as some have them and others don’t, and a few leftover graphics found within the game suggest a couple might have been abandoned in-progress.

    I’ve seen suggestions that the zone order was rejigged a little bit, fairly late into the process, which would maybe account for this (as well as the slightly erratic difficulty curve).

    I’m not sure how much truth there is to that, though.


    Finished my Tails run. I saved it for last because I kept hearing that Tails was “easy mode,” and I wanted to play the game properly before I went easy on myself. But I’d actually disagree!

    I guess it depends on what someone means by “easy.” For instance, if they had most of their trouble with platforming, Tails would certainly help there. But I guess I didn’t because I struggled with him more than I did with Sonic or Knuckles, and died in places I never even took damage before. In fact, I died to the last boss for the first time ever!

    I did collect all but one Chaos Emerald. The last bonus stage is hard as heck, as if you build up too much speed before catching the UFO it’s super easy to just fly off the track. I’ll get it…but I need a break.

    Thank you for letting me know you can dip back into stages on your completed save file to farm for emeralds and medals. I honestly didn’t even think to try that!


    That’s the only way I’d get them all, I think. I didn’t think the final Special Stage was that bad, but number five was an absolute bastard.

    I’m very close to the end of my Knuckles run (and I have four emeralds so far on that save) – like you, I’ve saved Tails for last.


    So has anyone given Sonic Forces a try?

    I saw it was on sale on Amazon for £14.99 over the Christmas holidays so I’ve given it a punt.

    It’s very much in the mould of the modern Sonic games (feels similar to Generations in a lot of ways) but they seem to have done a bit of a better job of removing the frustrations (like instant deaths from falling off the stages). So far, anyway.

    The kids love it and have particularly enjoyed the character-creator element that allows you to make your own unique Sonic-style character.

    For me, though, it’s no Mania. I always find the serious Sonic storylines a bit laughable, and this is completely overwrought in places (the opening setup is that Sonic has been captured – and *tortured* – for months after Robotnik succeeds in taking over the planet. Yes.)

    Plus there’s been some obvious cost-cutting in places, with some of the animated cutscenes strung together with plain text screens to fill gaps in the story, which is a bit naff.

    But at a budget price – £15 is cheaper than Mania, and for a physical release – this isn’t too bad, and the kids love all the bells and whistles.


    Oh, incidentally, it wasn’t until mid-December that I finally fully cracked Mania (ie. getting complete save files with Sonic, Knuckles and Tails, each with the full seven chaos emeralds, as well as completing all the Blue Sphere levels), so that game ended up providing a huge amount of value for money.


    I thought about getting Forces but…eh. I’m not as interested. If it went on sale for a cheap enough price, I’d probably grab it for the hell of it. I know you mentioned it’s less expensive than Mania, and that’s nice, but I think it would still need to be cheaper still to interest me.

    Mania, on the other hand, has had some real staying power with me. I’ve played through it a few times and diddled around with it even more. I’m far from finishing all the Blue Sphere stages and I may not ever, but that game impressed me way more than I expected to be impressed as a casual fan of the series.

    I put it in my top 10 games list for the year: http://noiselesschatter.com/2017/12/31/my-10-best-games-of-my-2017/

    If Forces ever dropped to around $5 I’d grab it, if only for the novelty of character creation (which I hear is fairly deep), but for now I’ll just wait patiently for Mania 2 (feat. Starlight Zone).


    Yeah, there ‘s lots of fun to be had fiddling about with the character creator if you like that kind of thing.


    (the opening setup is that Sonic has been captured – and *tortured* – for months after Robotnik succeeds in taking over the planet. Yes.)

    A staple of faux-serious writing: just claim something terrible happened to somebody off screen, but don’t let it impact the character in any way whatsoever.

    Forces has fucking rubbish level design. I’ve always disliked the gameplay of the boost system, but Forces brings it to new heights with just absurdly short and linear levels. Sonic was a platformer that made you EARN your speed by playing well, which could for example let you skip over underwater sections in levels like Hydrocity in Sonic 3. That’s almost the polar opposite of how the series now works.

    The boost system has always struck me as an overglorified “hold A to win” set up; just press the button and watch Sonic go. The enemies aren’t even obstacles, they’re usually cannon fodder to charge through or a path through the air to traverse with the homing attack. It’s just so simple and unsatisfying to me. It feels like the game is almost playing itself in many sections, and I as the player have very minimal impact beyond holding the boost button. It doesn’t help that the level design is in the boost games is way more worried about making sure you’re always moving as fast as possible as opposed to actually being fun.

    The 2.5D segments suffer the most, because the game engine is incredibly poorly designed for platforming. Because all your speed comes from holding a button to automatically max it out, not from actually building momentum, they don’t play anything like the genuine 2D games. Even the Classic levels lack slopes, but Generation’s faux-classic style was always a facsimile that was only superficially like playing the Genesis games. The physics and controls suffered from operating on the same engine as the Modern gameplay, which meant that the actual level design couldn’t really work anything like the Genesis games either.

    Mania genuinely works like the Genesis games and in many ways outdoes them, particularly in level design. The levels achieve complexity beyond what the Genesis could have done on a meager 4 MB cartridge, and it makes them so much more replayable.

    I don’t think Sonic Team has any clue how to make a Sonic game any more. The most passionate people have either left or were lost in the mass firings after the ’06 debacle, even though SEGA forcing the game to be rushed for Christmas was arguably the biggest factor in its failure. Mania has not only outperformed every single Sonic game in the past 15 years, but it was universally critically well received; even by outlets who normally have nothing but disdain for the franchise. And this was the game that was headed up by Christian “Taxman” Whitehead, a fan developer, not by Sonic Team itself.

    Sonic Team needs new blood. The people in charge don’t understand the franchise, and ever since Generations they’ve been desperately pandering by rehashing old content while demonstrating they had no actual idea why those games worked in the first place. If nothing else, I want to see Taxman in charge of a subsection of Sonic Team devoted to making more classic-style 2D installments.

    This franchise was my childhood. For the first time in over a decade they’ve released not only a game I liked but a game I _loved_, and I desperately want to see that trend continue. Mania was as big a deal to me as Back to Earth was back in 2009. One of my favorite things ever that I never thought I’d ever see more of, back from the dead long after any reasonable hope had died off.

    Oh, and the Sonic Boom cartoon is shit. I just needed to add that because everyone on the internet seems convinced that lame, pandering garbage is somehow incredibly smart and sophisticated. It’s terrible at being Sonic, and it’s a mediocre sitcom at absolute best. I’m glad the damn thing got cancelled.


    My kids quite like Sonic Boom. I think maybe it works better as a kids’ show than a show for adult Sonic fans. They find it quite funny, and from the bits that I’ve seen I like that it’s prepared to be silly and comedic rather than taking itself too seriously (see: Sonic Underground).

    I agree with you on the Forces level design anyway. There’s not much to it and the levels are very short and simple.

    Mania coming out this year has made Forces appear worse than it might have otherwise. It’s still an ok game but Mania is the kind of Sonic game that I always hoped for, while Forces is the kind of Sonic game that I always expect.


    and from the bits that I’ve seen I like that it’s prepared to be silly and comedic rather than taking itself too seriously (see: Sonic Underground).

    There is a huge middle ground between being too serious and being so focused on silliness that you don’t even try to write decent plots or characterization.

    I think maybe it works better as a kids’ show than a show for adult Sonic fans.

    The writers of the show have made it very clear they feel it’s a sophisticated cartoon for all ages, and that’s why I’m so harsh about it. It gets very unearned high praise, and because I know so many people in the fandom I was always stuck on the periphery of a circlejerk of adults in their late ’20s touting it as one of the smartest cartoons on TV. People who are WAY too old to be impressed by base-level meta humor that was already being far outdone by shows like Animaniacs when they were little kids. And Animaniacs never explained the punchline to you.


    I don’t think I’ve ever spoken to any other adults about it so I don’t have that context of it being overrated.

    I’ve seen so many Sonic cartoons over the years, and the bad ones have outweighed the good to such an extent that seeing a half-decent one like Sonic Boom is welcome.


    Sonic Mania Plus coming this summer with new characters, encore mode, 4 player split screen and physical release

    Hmm I wonder what encore mode will entitle. Hoping each new character has a new old school zone to play in.

    I do hope in the future they either ditch the 10minute time out/death or extend it, as some zones I found I was running out of time in, plus if you want to explore more as well.

    + new Megadrive Collection coming end of May with online multiplayer!

    Sega Mega Drive Collection is releasing on PC, PS4, and Xbox One


    It’s milking it a bit but I’ll probably pick up the update as DLC. While I’d like a physical copy I’m not going to pay full-price for a game I essentially already own.


    I’m keeping all the games on my Switch digital only, so a physical release means nothing to me. Just need to get a bigger SD card in the future.

    I hope that Mega Drive collection gets a Switch release too. Haven’t played Golden Axe or Streets of Rage in ages… but no Revenge of Shinobi?? Used to have all 3 on the one cartridge and played the shit outta it and Sonic 2 when I was a young’un.


    Revenge of Shinobi is on there.

    Surprised that Sonic 3 and S&K aren’t.

    Ben Saunders

    The advent of digital only games coincided nicely with me running out of shelf space to store any more physical media so I made the switch pretty willingly


    Shinobi 3 is on there, not the original Revenge of Shinobi.


    Because editing posts is borked, I’ll post again instead –

    The list Remeses Niblick The Third posted for VG247’s site gives Sonic 1, 2 and 3 on the cart as well as S&K and Pinball, with Shinobi 3. Not sure what list/release you may be referring to Dave.


    Oh, balls. Turns out the list is what was on a release for the last gen and the games on this could be different, but nowhere seems to have a definitive list.

    I need to go back to bed.


    There seems to be a bit of confusion here.

    Here’s a link detailing what games are on this new release.



    The list in full:


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    Posted 14 March 2018

    Sega Mega Drive Classics, featuring over 50 iconic games, hits PS4 on 29th May

    Get a look at the full list of titles, plus details on the all-new emulation features

    By Ibrahim Bhatti
    Community Manager
    Hi everyone, my name’s Ibrahim Bhatti and I’m Community Manager at Sega Europe. Today we’ve got a real treat for retro Sega fans as we’ve just announced that Sega Mega Drive Classics is coming to PS4 on May 29th!

    The collection has over 50 classic games from the Mega Drive era for you to enjoy across pretty much every genre. RPG fan? We’ve got you covered with Shining Force and Phantasy Star titles. If Shooters are more your thing, then how about Space Harrier? Or if side-scrolling face punching is more your bag then all three Streets of Rage titles are included in the set!


    Here’s a full list of the games featured in the collection.

    Alex Kidd in the Enchanted Castle
    Alien Soldier
    Alien Storm
    Altered Beast
    Beyond Oasis
    Bio-Hazard Battle
    Bonanza Bros.
    Columns III: Revenge of Columns
    Comix Zone
    Crack Down
    Decap Attack
    Dr. Robotnik’s Mean Bean Machine
    Dynamite Headdy
    ESWAT: City Under Siege
    Fatal Labyrinth
    Gain Ground
    Galaxy Force II
    Golden Axe
    Golden Axe II
    Golden Axe III
    Gunstar Heroes
    Kid Chameleon
    Light Crusader
    Phantasy Star II
    Phantasy Star III: Generations of Doom
    Phantasy Star IV: The End of the Millenium
    Shadow Dancer: The Secret of Shinobi
    Shining Force
    Shining Force II
    Shining in the Darkness
    Shinobi III: Return of the Ninja Master
    Sonic 3D Blast
    Sonic Spinball
    Sonic the Hedgehog
    Sonic the Hedgehog 2
    Space Harrier II
    Streets of Rage
    Streets of Rage 2
    Streets of Rage 3
    Super Thunder Blade
    Sword of Vermilion
    The Revenge of Shinobi
    ToeJam & Earl in Panic on Funkotron
    ToeJam& Earl
    VectorMan 2
    Virtua Fighter 2
    Wonder Boy III: Monster Lair
    Wonder Boy in Monster World

    Some absolute gems on there, as well as one or two stinkers.


    No Sonic 3 & Knuckles though which could be because of the Micheal Jackson music rights issue, or more likely the team behind Sonic Mania who were working on a HD port which subsequently turned into Sonic Mania are going to release a port for the 25th anniversary next year?


    Yes, like I said earlier I was surprised that Sonic 3 and S&K aren’t on there. I also wondered whether there might be a new port in the works to accompany the recent Sonic 1, Sonic 2 and Sonic CD ports. We’ll see.

    From memory, the similar PS3 mega drive collection included both Sonic 3 and S&K separately but not as a combined S3&K, which would be rubbish, so at least we didn’t get that.

    To be honest though I’ve got so many copies of the Sonic games in various places that I don’t really need them here (the Sonic Classic Collection on the Nintendo DS is probably my favourite compilation), although it would be nice to have S3&K on here for completeness.


    Yeh but it will be worth getting for the online multiplayer alone. Hoping I can co-op Streets Of Rage!


    With this and the Street Fighter II collection coming out on the same date I’m going to be spending a lot of money on decades-old games that day.

    Frankly though it’ll be worth it to let my kids discover some of these games for themselves, and for me to get to grips with stuff like Gunstar Heroes, Dynamite Headdy, Alien Soldier and Decap Attack all over again.


    I maintain that Sonic Mania Plus is just the release we would have gotten in the first place if SEGA had any idea that Mania would outsell Forces, even though Forces was absolute fucking garbage. I mean it was so bad that people who adore the Modern games were leveling some of the accusations I have about why they inherently don’t work as reasons Forces sucks.

    I’m a little disappointed to not see any brand new levels included in Plus, which is why I suspect they threw together just enough of an upgrade to warrant a new release so they could do a proper disc.

    I’m still going to buy it. Mania is a fucking gem and I wanted a Genesis-style case for it from day one.


    Forces is ok, especially for kids.

    It was never going to be more appealing to adults that the nostalgia-fest retro throwback game, though. Unfortunately Mania is so brilliantly done that Forces inevitably looks even more disappointing in comparison.

    But the kids still regularly play Forces today, even after their enthusiasm for Mania has worn off.


    Just jumped back on Sonic Mania, and noticed that the menu system is changed and a few new options had opened up. Apparently the latest update (in anticipation of the Sonic Mania Plus DLC/physical release) has added quite a bit.

    Sonic Mania update adds extra stage transitions, a new boss and other new features

    Love the hanglider from Master System Sonic 2.


    that accidentally leak, what a shit show as is the release date of July 17, 2018.



    My time on Green Hill Act 1 is 36s 080ms. I managed to get myself in 18th place. I now have scientific proof that I am extremely good at Genesis Sonic.

    I’m glad this site exists, because the in-game leaderboard is full of cheaters. We’re talking well over the top hundred people having no time at all with –‘–“– before we even start hitting impossible times with actual numbers in them.


    I never bothered with trying to get a good time on any of the Genesis Sonic games…except the Robo-Sonic boss fight at the end of Sonic 2. For some reason I was obsessed with speedrunning that one part of the game when I was younger- eventually I got it down to 13 seconds, as I remember.

    I think I only ever played Sonic for the boss fights really. Everything else was just fluff

    Ben Saunders

    Another speedrunner on G&T, I don’t believe it.

    Srcom is fantastic, yeah, even games that attempt to remove bogus times never really do so with 100%, or even 10% accuracy. I know a guy who had his legitimate times removed from the Crash Bandicoot N Sane Trilogy leaderboards because he was too good, basically. And then there was that autistic person who got banned from Xbox Live because they were getting too many achievements too quickly. Reading that last story was actually pretty distressing to me because they must have put a lot of work into it, completely innocently, only to be punished without a trial and to have everything taken away from them. Sure, it’s only games, but it’s still pretty sad.

    I got around 140th in the official in-game leaderboards for Ocean View in Sonic & All Stars Racing Transformed, although the official world record (ie the fastest time with video proof) is only 109th, lol. Me and a couple mates grinded the hell out of that track trying to beat each other and only one of them managed to beat me, that person also happens to be a total beast and has held the world record for multiple Spyro categories

    Ben Saunders

    My mate was kind enough to remind me that I got 29.551 -after- I posted the comment, with the world record being 29.338. My mate got 29.371, though. Unbelievably, frustratingly close, lol. That feeling when you shave another 0.002 off of your time after 40 attempts is unmatched by anything else, though.


    That feeling when you find yourself groaning at getting a time that not long ago you would have thought impossible.

    Ben Saunders

    “Ugh, 29.624, fuck off that’s so shit” – me 2 hours after needing to change my underwear after getting a 29.7


    I’m still playing Sonic Mania regularly and loving it. It’s a fantastic game, especially with the Plus update.


    Me too. God. I just. I fucking love this game. And it came at the best possible time, too. In 2016 I was falling away from the Sonic fandom outside of doing abridged series under the banner of Sonic Paradox, and Sonic Mania comes right along and answers my prayers.

    Now if they can just resurrect the Adventure games in the same vein as this did the Genesis ones, my fangirl dreams would come true.

    Kris Carter

    As the most casual of casual gamers, Titanic Monarch Zone can GET IN THE FUCKING SEA.


    Ah, it’s not so bad once you get the hang of it.


    I actually really like Titanic Monarch. It doesn’t feel so cramped and spammy with the badniks as Launch Base or Death Egg Zone do.

    If anything, I feel it was a little too easy. Sonic 3&K can still kick my fucking ass on those final boss fights, I was hoping Mania’s final boss would be harder. It’s certainly well designed and fun to play, but I almost feel like doing titanic Metal Sonic from Chaotix as the Death Egg Zone Final Boss was the hardest point in the game for me in terms of dying repeatedly. Which Plus added, the original Metal fight was much easier. I guess I wish Mania got proper hard near the end. That’s something I assume will be addressed when they undoubtedly make a Sonic Mania 2, but this time it’s just an all-new Genesis Sonic installment. They’d be stupid not to do that with how well it sold and how highly it’s praised.

    Why don’t we just let Christian Whitehead make a real Sonic 4 so we can pretend the piece of cancerous garbage SEGA gave us under that title never existed?


    I don’t actually mind the Titanic Monarch Act Two boss for a final boss, he’s just about tricky enough at first before you get the hang of him, and he’s long-winded enough to defeat that it feels like an ‘epic’ battle.

    I think I prefer it to the Egg Reverie final-final boss where you can win without much finesse, you just bounce around for a while between the two baddies until they’re defeated. It was a bit of an anticlimax, especially with that weird portal ending that leads into Forces (although I liked the fact that Mania Plus made it so that you can read it as leading straight into the Angel Island portal if you want to ignore Forces altogether).


    Hooray, 100 posts in this thread means we get an extra life.

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