Once upon a time, the latest Sonic was as welcome as a Scarlet Johansson nude scene. We can but dream, eh? But since the series’ transformation to 3D, we’ve approached each new release with ever increasing caution.



Gameboy and DS users have had it best with the 2D Sonic Advance and Sonic Rush, but the rest of us have been lumbered with low grade 3D adventuring. It’s not what Sonic’s all about.

Until now that is. This switch to the next gen Xbox 360 and PS3 has been accompanied by barrel loads of hype promising a return to the series oh so addictive routes. Sega’s even gone as far as nicking the name of the original MegaDrive title too.

Then there’s the videos released way back at E3 2006. They seemed to deliver and we could feel our sweaty little palms moistening up. Well now the game’s here and we’ve realised all that excitement was for nothing. Better get the hedgehog roaster out...

Anyone who’s read any of our previous reviews will know we give each game a fair crack of the proverbial whip. We’re not ones to pick on one mere sticking point and bash the subject’s brains in purely for the opportunity to do so. No, we’re much, much bigger than that.

But, Sonic the Hedgehog is one game that has us reaching for the flamethrower.

There’s one positive. First, you’ll save £50 of your hard earned cash if you avoid this turd of a title. It may, repeat, may just be worth renting it for a couple of quid just to see how bad it is.

And when we say bad, we mean "Rise of the Robots" bad. If you’ve played that gem you’ll know what we mean.

Any other positives? Errr … well no. There are no other redeeming features. You could be forgiven for thinking the screenshots look vaguely next gen – not Gears of War quality, but still a leap forward from, say, the PS2. Well, you’d be as wrong as any Chelsea fan trying to defend Didier Drogba’s obscene diving antics.

The graphics are actually as bland as boiled rice. In fact, there’s very little to differentiate this from the old Sonic Adventure title that appeared way back in the late nineties on Sega’s ill fated Dreamcast. That’s eight years and two console generations ago.

We’ve forgiven below par graphics in the past, but there’s no excuse for the random camera system. Want to be able to see what’s coming up? OK, well let’s position the camera in front of you and looking back so you’ve got a perfect view of everything you’ve just done. Ever tried to finish a Grand Turismo race by looking through the rear view mirror?

What makes it even worse is that you barely get to play as bloody Sonic at all! You’re looking at a third of the game at best. The rest of the time you’re gun toting Shadow and spooky and mysterious Silver and each has the odd character nuance here and there. In all honesty though, they’re boring and offer absolutely nothing that we haven’t seen done to death over and over again. And in games that are way cheaper than this tripe.

Verdict

We could so easily go on. There’s the pathetically long loading times every minute or two for no reason whatsoever. Then there’s the ridiculous script, the bland musical score and the total lack of any true Sonic action. We could go on for a few more paragraphs, but we think you get the drift.



So we’ll leave you with the pair of sentences from the start of this review. First, don’t shell out £50 on this. Second, only rent it if you’re a fan of hedgehogs splattered all over the road.