Review by leeko_link

Reviewed: 08/13/12

The Game That Defined Blast Processing

If you lived in the 16-Bit days of gaming, then you know there are two competitors that defined gaming at that time. If you love playing Super Mario Bros. then you are a Nintendo player, if you love playing Sonic the Hedgehog then you are a Sega player. Fortunately for me, I was kinda in-between, yeah Nintendo is cool and all but on the other hand Sega had this one awesome new mascot that I just had to try. Sonic the Hedgehog was that mascot with an attitude, all the commercials said so, all the ads mention so and I wanted to proved it. To me this is truly the first Sega Genesis game that defined the terms blast processing.


Stunning, for an 16-bit game on the Genesis, the visual quality are quite colorful and full of wonders. From Green Hill Zone to the Bonus stage to Marble Zone to Scrap Brain Zone, these levels offer unique different atmosphere and theme for players to toggle and explore. For an early game there quite a lot of smoothness in this game. Sonic’s dashing and motion animation roll without delay, the scrolling also kept up with all the platforming and dashing without any sign of glitching at all. All the enemies are also unique to the level they represents and the boss design looks wacky and crazy every time you face them. So far Sega did an awesome job with these.


If you’re a retro gamer, then these music will be stuck in your heads for eternity just by playing it time after time. Even the first level music (Green Hill Zone) had stay in my head since the day I play this game. It’s just that memorable and the battle music just upped the tune even more. The sounds also had their share of awesomeness from Sonic’s high speed boost to the popping sound of the defeated enemies to the sound of the 1-up anthem, even the slightest sound of a ring chime makes the game feel enchanting.


The control is simple, like any platformer back in the day, you control with the d-pad and jump with the action button. The most unique thing about Sonic the Hedgehog as compare to other platform games like Super Mario Bros. is that you don’t have to rely on two buttons to play. Basically all you need is the d-pad and one of the A, B, or C button so an extra button for dashing is not necessary. Also Sonic the Hedgehog's gameplay had you dash and sprint a lot from loop to loop and obstacle to another sometimes even offer springs to jump for reaching higher grounds or explore hidden path as well as build up speed for player to whisk through level at blazing speed. The game also feature helpful power-ups available through monitors around each levels such as the invincibility which allow Sonic to become temporarily untouchable, power sneaker which increase his agility speed when blazing through obstacles, and the barrier shield which create a blue barrier around Sonic to prevent him from losing rings when getting knocked by enemies, all which are there to help player get through each levels more successfully. Also at the end of the third stage of each level or zone, player would also had to engage in boss battle to rescue Sonic’s animal friends and progress through the game. There are less leap of faith in this game so accidental jump isn’t a threat here and timer hardly ever run out unless player is wasting time. The only minor flaw with Sonic is that on water level it usually gets complicated due to Sonic's inability to swim but there are recharge so Sonic could catch some breath to survive. Other than that the gameplay is solid.


Since this is the very first Sonic the Hedgehog game to be release, there are no multiplayer mode feature here but you could always replay to get the best time by doing speed play. There are also portal to Bonus Stage which would allow you to try your luck on grabbing one of six Chaos Emeralds which if all are collected would unlock the game‘s final ending.

Is it Worth Buying?

Definitely, though nowadays there are many ports, add-ons, plug N play device, handheld, and compilations that already had this game available so if you want you could just get this game with those, but if you still had a Sega Genesis and want to stay retro playing your nostalgic like it’s the 90s then this game would be perfect for that. With amazing graphics, a memorable soundtrack, simple control and super fast fun gameplay for a console that had attitudes, Sonic the Hedgehog surely proved what blast processing had achieved on the Sega Genesis.

Rating:   4.5 - Outstanding

Product Release: Sonic the Hedgehog (US, 06/23/91)

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