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(Pocket-lint) - Sonic riders promises a white knuckle ride with the usual sprinkling of adrenaline-fuelled thrills and spills, but can a blue hedgehog on a hovering surf board really promise all this and much more? We get playing and find out whether the game lives up to expectations.

Unfortunately for Sonic and his chums the game doesn't. Like previous Sonic titles, Sega seems intent on putting the blue hedgehog in all manner of situations to squeeze yet more money out of what must already be a drying-up market.

The races are formulaic, offering the usual array of speed ups and weapons to knock the three other opponents out of the race.

Likewise the courses are neither challenging or plentiful and even after a short time playing Sonic Riders you will be able to navigate around the course with ease.

In an attempt to be different you have the chance to perform tricks at certain points on the track, however these don't seem to make any difference to your overall performance.

What does make a difference is the slipstreams that randomly appear. Get on, or in one and you'll go considerably faster. So fast in fact that you kinda lose where you are or what you are doing.

In most games this would be a worry, however in Sonic Riders it doesn't.

While for most of the game we didn't really understand what we were doing or what was going on for that matter, it didn't seem to stop us progressing through the 13 levels with speed.


This may appeal to the younger audience out there, but for us there is nothing new or exciting about Sonic Riders.

The game fails to lock you in to having any feeling for either the characters or the urge to win Dr. Eggman's Worldwide Grand Prix and the supposedly very rare Chaos Emerald.

We found ourselves wondering where this game could have gone so horribly wrong from the original premise. What we would have loved to have seen is the Sonic level where you battled against Tails down a half open pipe trying to collect as many rings as possible.

What you are left with is neither the fun or entertaining approach of Mario Kart, or even the sexy graphics of Wipeout 2097.

This is about as disappointing as you can get.

Writing by Stuart Miles.