Review – Sonic Adventure

Sonic Adventure
Developer: Sonic Team
Publisher: SEGA
Genre: Platformer
Release Date: Out Now (XBLA), September 22nd (PSN)

At last the first of many Dreamcast titles has reached the digital marketplace. What better way to start off the service than with one of the most iconic Dreamcast games out there … the one that isn’t Shenmue, Jet Set Radio or Chu Chu Rocket. Sonic Adventure springs back to life to fill you with nostalgia and memories of how excited you were to own a Dreamcast. Or that would have been the case had SEGA used the Dreamcast version. Hit the jump for the full review and final opinion!

Sonic Adventure was just the beginning. Ever since this game, the series has had over the top storylines, each getting stupidly crazy with every installment. Adventure was a revamp to the world of Sonic as we knew it, as the fictional planet of Mobius was cast out, where as Sonic and co were put onto Earth. Because animals with human features walking about makes perfect sense! The story goes a little like this; in the fictional town of Station Square, Sonic is speeding along as usual when he comes into contact with Chaos, a blue, liquid-like creature. Doctor Robotnik, that lovable fat guy, is gathering the Chaos Emeralds and is planning to feed them to Chaos, and destroy Station Square to build Robotnikland. If it’s not the world he wants to conquer, it’s a city. So Sonic teams up with his chums to find the emeralds before Robotnik, stop his evil plans, usual cliché plot. Hey, at least he’s not turning into a Werehog!

There are several different ways to play Sonic Adventure, each assigned to a character. You have the choice to play as Sonic, Tails, Knuckles, Amy, Big the Cat and E-102 Gamma. Big and Gamma being new characters to the series at the time. Sonic and Amy feature action stages, Tails features racing stages, Knuckles features treasure hunting, Gamma features gunfire gameplay and Big features … fishing. When you’re not in levels, you’ll be exploring the adventure fields, locating level entrances and character power ups. There are only three adventure fields but they have a nice bit of variety to them. Still  kinda dull though.

Now, this is where I’m disappointed. Sonic Adventure is supposed to be a Dreamcast game, so why have SEGA used the Sonic Adventure DX build? The game has the graphics and physics from SADX, and while it’s certainly not too bad, it’s not the Dreamcast version we’ve been waiting for. It may be me nitpicking as a fanboy but it isn’t the same if it isn’t the original. SEGA are also charging you 400MSP for the DX content, which includes the mission mode and Metallix (Metal Sonic) as a playable character. So we’re getting Sonic Adventure DX and having to pay extra for content that should have been with the game anyway? I wouldn’t have minded so much if they weren’t promoting it as a Dreamcast title.

Moving on from graphics, everything else pretty much remains the same. The fantastic soundtrack is still there, the so bad it’s good voice acting still lingers on and of course, the Chao are back and ready to make you fall in love all over again. It’s Sonic Adventure, no doubt about it. But it’s not the Sonic Adventure we were promised. As a SEGA/Sonic/Dreamcast fanboy, I’m extremely let down by the single fact of it not being the original. That and the game doesn’t support widescreen, but instead gives you a pretty ugly border around the screen. If you really must, give the game a go. But if you can help it, just hook up your Dreamcast and/or Gamecube. It’ll save you a bit of money.

Final Score – 7/10

One of Sonic’s best moments, but not worth the money if you own it on Dreamcast or Gamecube. Keep in mind you’re purchasing DX, not the Dreamcast original.

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