Reviews and Problems with Sonic the Hedgehog 4: Episode II
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Sonic the Hedgehog 4: Episode 2
2 September 2013
Summary: Sonic the Hedgehog 4: Episode 1 was considered a letdown by many longtime fans of the series, mostly due to the fact that its physics were not similar enough to the original Genesis titles. Part of the benefit of an episodic series is that developers can listen to concerns such as this and address them in future updates, something quite clearly evidenced in Episode 2 .
Excerpt: It seems a long way off now, but there was a time when news of a new Sonic the Hedgehog game was met with whispered excitement rather than a collective groan - and, perhaps in some eyes, the faintest glimmer of hope. That's not to say that Sega hasn't been trying to recapture former glories in the intervening years, but its continued failure to match the quality of Sonic's 16-bit heyday either suggests the publisher has forgotten what made Sonic great, or, more...
Conclusion: It’s sad really since Episode II is a really solid Sonic game, just one with frustrating boss fights, painfully bad music, and a total lack of originality, imagination or inspiration. I don’t want Sonic to die, but he needs a developer that doesn’t find some new and amazing way to screw up every game they make.
Excerpt: Sonic the Hedgehog 4: Episode I had a lot riding on it, since Sega hyped it up to be a potential revival of the franchise. It ended up being pretty divisive – you either loved or hated it. After a couple years of uncertainty as to whether Sega would keep the episodic format or not, the publisher delivers Sonic the Hedgehog 4: Episode II, which sees the return of Miles “Tails” Prower as our helpful sidekick.
Pros: Sonic and Tails demonstrate some new moves, Certain stages are a blast, Makes you want to revisit old Sonic games
Cons: The soundtrack had us hating our lives, Falling to your death because Tails got tired, The final Robotnik fight is straight-up painful
Excerpt: It has been quite some time since the first episode of Sonic 4 released, and revitalized the way I look at the franchise. With such a gap, I had almost forgotten about the speedy hedgehog's return to fame and wondered if he was ever going to defend his title as not only the fastest mascot in the industry but also as the best sequel of the franchise since (and I know fans will be gasping in disappointment here) Sonic & Knuckles.
Summary: It’s hard to escape the trappings of convention, but Sonic 4: Episode 2 offers modest innovation for the series without overly relying on its past strength. The game keeps its own identity. I can ponder over whether the game manages to mimic its retro elders but this would ultimately be unhelpful. This is a subtle new direction for Sonic, simplistic platforming bolstered with the heady thrill of speed.
Pros: Improved movement physics, Pleasant visual design
Conclusion: A good follow-up doesn't just add new content--it improves on the original. In that critical sense, Sonic the Hedgehog 4: Episode 2 disappoints. While the addition of cooperative play is a big step in the right direction, the core elements that made Episode 1 a tepid experience persist here: mediocre level design, slow pacing, and erratic levels of fun.
Pros: Entertaining cooperative gameplay with Tails, Fun "3D" bonus levels.
Cons: Tails isn't a distinct character, Boss battles are boring, Many levels lack a sense of speed.
Excerpt: Thanks to some cool level and boss designs, Episode II starts out on a really high note and just keeps going throughout its 16 stages—four zones and four acts, plus third-person 3-D tunnel bonus levels. From moment one, a fully 3-D rendered Sonic is joined by the two-tailed fox Tails, blissfully bereft of the high-pitched voice he has possessed throughout more story-laden Sonic games, and the characters take off together throughout expansive levels filled with all of the...