2011-07-07

Sonic Generations – Fast And Colorful

by Yo Snyder

Sonic the Hedgehog is celebrating his twentieth birthday, but age hasn’t slowed him down on whit. The new Sonic Generations
game aims not only to prove that one of gaming’s most recognizable
mascots not only isn’t slowing down, but that he’s getting back to his
roots and returning to what made his early games so much fun and what
made him so iconic.

First thing I noticed about the new Sonic Generations
demo is that it’s fast; really fast. When you build up a good head of
steam, it’s well nigh impossible to keep track of everything blurring by
you on the screen. I instantly felt the same sense of thrilling
confusion I did way back when I played Sonic for the first time on a
SEGA Genesis. Things go by so fast it’s exciting, but I don’t know
what’s happening because it happens so fast. It’s easy to lose track of
yourself as things blur by, and then suddenly you stop dead in your
tracks in a shower of rings as you collide with an enemy or obstacle
that you didn’t see coming; or did but just couldn’t react fast enough.
Yup, that’s just the way I remember it.

The second thing I noticed
is how great it all looked in HD. Everything was bright, colorful and
detailed (not that you really have time to notice as it whizzes by). In
fact, everything looks so sharp and so colorful that it can be a little
disorientating when you really get going; it’s like looking through a
crazy kaleidoscope of speed. Along with those sharp looking HD graphics
is a silky, smooth framerate; something absolutely essential for giving
one the necessary sense of speed.There isn’t the slightest hint of
framerate dip in the demo, even when my speed collapses in shower of
rings while I try to take out an enemy.

In truth, the demo is all
too brief. You only get one brief trip through a classic level, and then
the demo is over. As much fun as it is to exult in the old-school glory
of a classic Sonic side-scroller in HD, what I really wanted to see in
the demo was the difference between playing that level with classic
Sonic compared with playing it with new Sonic and his third-person,
over-the-shoulder perspective. Sadly, we’ll have to wait for the full
game this November to experience that, but if the demo is any
indication, that experience should be fast and thrilling and entirely
Sonic.