I think I found a style of review that I like. It’s not hard to put together, it gets the good and bad out there, and it isn’t a chore to read. Well, the length isn’t a chore…I know my writing can sometimes be tough to get through! Still, I hope you enjoy this style of review. I’ll be using it a lot more in the near future! You read up, and I’ll head to bed. See you guys in a few, short hours.
Finally, time for a new Sonic game! We had to wait nearly 4 months for this one. I thought I would go crazy without more hedgehog!
Seriously though…I didn’t have any high expectations for this game. I thought it was coming out a bit too soon after Sonic Unleashed, and the quality of that title had me once again questioning whether or not Sonic should even be in today’s console software landscape. I went into Unleashed with a positive attitude, and I left a very broken man. Follow that up with IGN’s review of ‘SatBK’, and I was set to ignore the franchise completely. Still, I wanted to try the game for myself. I’ll be damned if I didn’t end up having some fun with it.
Fun in a console Sonic game? I know…I’m just as surprised as you are!
Fun-factor: I honestly did have fun playing Sonic and the Black Knight. That’s not to say that it was the most enjoyable game I’ve ever played. It’s not anywhere near being the most fun I’ve had with a Sonic game either. Still, I definitely got enjoyment out of the game from start to finish. The game has speed, some fun engaging environments to run through, and simple ideas at work.
Graphics: Wow, this is one hell of a good-looking Wii game. I think it might be in the top 5 titles on the platform when it comes to visuals. The lava stages in particular are really breathtaking. I don’t know if I’ve become easier to please as I get older, but I’ll be damned if I didn’t think that what I saw in these lava stages rivaled some lower-end 360 games. Trust me, this title is a looker.
Music - I hate Crush 40…hate them with a passion. Of course, their signature painful rock is included in this game…but there are other songs that they had no input on. Those are the songs that kick ass. Even the name-entry screen has great music. There are a few cheesy rock songs strewn throughout, but overall it’s a very solid soundtrack. Not as good as what Unleashed did with music, but no slouch by any means.
What Doesn’t Work
Certain objectives: Doing time-attack stages with Sonic is great fun. Blasting through a certain amount of enemies is pretty fun as well. Stopping every 10 feet to pay townsfolk in rings isn’t fun at all. It’s these missions that are start/stop/start/stop are the ones that really bug the hell out of me. That start/stop element even bleeds into all missions in general…but only slightly. Thankfully, these lesser objectives are kept to a minimum.
Story: Sonic doesn’t need an involved story. I understand that ‘SatBK’ is another entry in the ’storybook’ series of Sonic games, but the lengths SEGA goes to to throw Sonic characters into classic tales is ridiculous. The setting is fine and the main objective works…but I don’t need cut-scenes with needless chatter and horrible dialog. It’s a shame too…the hand-drawn cut-scenes are actually really beautiful.
This isn’t Sonic: ‘SatBK’ is a game staring Sonic, but there’s no way I can call it a true Sonic game. This is a title where a fast hedgehog uses his sword to slash through enemies. This game could have came out exactly the same with another character. I completely understand that SEGA isn’t going to give us Sonic the way he used to be. I don’t like that one bit, but I understand it. While this game is fun, it pales in comparison to any of Sonic’s classic Genesis titles.
The Quick and Dirty
Sonic and the Black Knight…against all odds…didn’t turn out to be a disaster. It still has plenty of issues, and it’s not the Sonic game that longtime fans want, but I’ll be damned if it didn’t give me a few hours of fun. Do I want Sonic to stay like this? Of course I don’t…but if SEGA could take what works in this game and build upon it, maybe we could see this generation’s Sonic turn into a different type of respectable mascot.
You almost lost me there, SEGA. You swooped in at the last moment and gave me a Sonic title with just enough fun for me to hang onto my hope. Damn you!