Review by Dane

"What happened to the classic Sonic"

Don't get me wrong: Sonic Advance is an excellent standalone game. It borrows the basic Sonic premise--run from one level to the next, grabbing all the rings you can, etc.--but it just doesn't deliver the Sonic style I'm familiar with. When I first popped in this title, I expected something similiar to the Genesis Sonic games. Oh, sure, that's what I got, but it had an entirely different feel. I miss the the feel original Genesis games had, which was lost in both Sonic Adventure titles--both good standalone games--and sadly, Sonic Advance.

Gameplay
This is where the game fails miserably. The game is pretty fun, sure, but it's just not as frantic and chaotic as the original Sonic games. There usually aren't multiple paths--and when there are, they usually link together very quickly--which cuts the feel of the original games in half. The Genesis titles had a feeling of speed, but also a feeling of exploration. Somehow, this was the perfect balance, and it worked very, very well. Although the gameplay of Sonic Advance is fairly decent, I just didn't feel that the balance was there. The Chao linkup with Sonic Adventure 2 Battle is a pretty neat addition, though, but it's a shame that the title's Chao option isn't very fun as a standalone feature. 6/10

Graphics
These are impressive, but they just look a bit too Nintendo-resembling to me. Well, sure, this is a Nintendo title, but I expected something that at least fit in the Sonic universe. 7/10

Sound
The Genesis Sonic games had great, memorable sound. Although this sound is okay, as a standalone, it isn't nearly as good as the original. However, it fits the Sonic feel, unlike most areas of the game. It works. 8/10

Control
Tight, responsive, and familiar. Nowhere does the control feel loose when it isn't met to. The control really cooperates with the gameplay, ala the original games. Good stuff here. 9/10

Replay Value
This is another area of the game where its quality takes a nose dive. Sure, you can play as Sonic, Tails, Knuckles, and Amy, but they all encounter the same stages. I've heard it constantly bragged that you can play the game ''a different way with each character.'' Bah. Different feel or not, each character's stages are identical, and this gives a stale, rushed tint to the game. 5/10

Overall
This is a good game, but it's just not Sonic. If you're looking for a fun game, get this, but if you're looking for nostalgic Sonic fun, stay far away. 6/10


Reviewer's Score: 6/10 | Originally Posted: 03/10/02, Updated 03/10/02


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