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Bad Idea Sega
Sonic 3D (Classic Game)
Member Name: Frankingsteins
Sonic 3D (Classic Game)
Date: 03/04/04, updated on 03/04/04 (91 review reads)
Advantages: None that I can see- devoted Sonic fans will feel the need to buy it
Disadvantages: Difficult to control, Very poor level designs, Uninteresting story in comparison to previous games
In the Clash of the Titans that was the 16-Bit Console Wars between the Super Nintendo and the Sega MegaDrive, the need to innovate new games to attract the public became increasingly important. In 1995 it was evident that Sony were going to release their powerful Playstation console very soon and Sega decided to try one final outing for their iconic blue hedgehog. The plan was to attract even more people to the MegaDrive with a groundbreaking three-dimensional game like none seen before. Unfortunately, being the arbiters of bad decisions from this point right through to the collapse pf their Dreamcast console in 2000, Sega instead brought out a very rubbish, boring and tedious game unimaginatively titled ?Sonic 3D.?
The previous Sonic games, namely 1991?s Sonic the Hedgehog, 1992?s Sonic 2, 1993?s Sonic 3 and 1994?s Sonic & Knuckles ? not Sonic 4 like you all thought ? had been based on the platform game format in which a character could proceed left and right, up and down through increasingly large and impressive levels. I could go into detail about the storylines, settings and motivations behind the characters (I actually could as I have issues 21-100 of Sonic the Comic in the loft somewhere) but I?m going to spare you this. Let?s just say, the completely separate storyline of Sonic 3D makes Mr. Creosote?s ?wafer thin? mint look like a lasagne.
To start with, Sonic 3D is not properly three-dimensional, it is instead based on an isometric ?aerial view? upon the action. The first properly 3D Sonic game, ?Sonic R,? came out on the Sega Saturn before they finally got it right with the Dreamcast?s ?Sonic Adventure.? This downward view makes everything in the game far more c
omplex than it needs to be, as it is very frustrating trying to judge how far the spinning ball that is your character will travel if you press ?up.? This makes every single aspect of the game very annoying.
There is a small island on Sonic?s world where the evil Doctor Robotnik has returned to his evil ways of imprisoning the native animals inside his robotic badniks as living batteries. He presumably thought he would succeed this time round, despite having been beaten consecutive times by the blue hedgehog in the previous games, the comics and that awful cartoon series. The native animals are birds called ?Flickies,? which have the power to open dimensional portals or? something. Anyway, once wind gets down Sonic?s neck of the woods, the blue hedgehog with ?attitude? heads there to stop him, without the company of his friends this time.
Sonic games had always featured a variety of locations, from volcanoes and submerged labyrinths to grassy mountains and cybernetic metropolises (that is a word). Sonic 3D starts with the relatively pastoral ?Green Grove Zone,? which features nice waterfalls and a chequered floor throughout the level, but once you arrive in the second zone it becomes clear that the chequered floor is present on every single level, just in a different colour. Talk about unimaginative! No amount of ice sheets or flaming craters in the corners are going to fool me into thinking I?m playing different levels with different experiences; at least in the older games I was believably deceived, and I enjoyed it. Robotnik?s contraptions at the end of each level are also very badly designed and all work on the principle that he?s a little too high for you to reach, so you have to wait for him to foolishly drop something on the floor that you can use to boost your height.
The controls are as expected on the MegaDrive joypad: up, down, left and right move Sonic in those directions. The A and C buttons make him jump, while pressing B performs the ?spin dash? move that can destroy the enemies as well. Rest assured, anyone playing this game will spend a lot of time angrily moving their fingers right around the directional pad as they try and get Sonic onto that platform.
Sonic 3D was not a success, and doesn?t deserve to be; the new format completely ruined the point of the game and made it feel very restricting, and the levels are all basically identical. I?m not sure why Sega decided it would be a good idea to release this, which clearly pales in comparison to Donkey Kong Country and other Super Nintendo games of the time in terms of graphics and playability, but they can?t let sleeping ?hogs lie. Nowadays I only play old games to relive the fun times and let me tell you my friends, this ain?t no fist of fun.