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What a review is supposed to be.

“Breathe easy, Sonic fans. SEGA got this one right.”

This is a quote from IGN’s review of Sonic the Hedgehog 4: Episode 1. An interesting statement considering there’s a pretty large portion of the fan base that would beg to disagree. I myself held my breath for the most part until the game was finally released and I didn’t feel like “SEGA got this one right” personally. Then comes one of my favorite gaming blogs online: Joystiq.

Joystiq took a different approach reviewing the game compared to IGN or 1up. That approach of course is being objective and properly criticizing the game while acknowledging what few things may make it enjoyable. I highly recommend reading the full review to get a nice understanding of what Sonic 4 is actually like to play. Writer Ludwig Kietzmann goes over some very interesting criticism of the game including the infamous physics (or lack-thereof) and inconsistencies in level design. At the same time, they praise Sonic Team (and Dimps) for attempting some colorful originality in parts of the levels and the fact that they aren’t quite as “hold right to win” as some previous Sonic outings. Though, they are careful to note they don’t quite hold up to the complexity as levels like Oil Ocean Zone from Sonic 2.

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19 Comments

  • Reply

    The graphics aren’t repulsive and you know it, Joystiq. Overstating negatives doesn’t make me want to trust you any more than I trust IGN.

    …Other than that, good review. At least (unlike GameSpot), they criticize actual problems.

    • Reply

      Maybe they do know it, because that’s their opinion.

      • Reply

        Utterly repulsive may be a bit melodramatic, but they are admittedly somewhat bland.

      • Reply

        Yeah, they’re “somewhat bland” at times. “Utterly repulsive” is still a blatant exaggeration. And don’t pull the “opinion” card. That’s not an argument, by any stretch of the imagination. And I’m tired of hearing it every time I point out that someone is exaggerating or is flat-out wrong. “IT’S HIS OPINION!!!1!!” Yeah, it’s his opinion, and his opinion sucks. And I went there. If you have something to say to back up his opinion, by all means. But please don’t state the bloody fucking obvious.

        • Reply

          I can back him up. I think the foregrounds are lifeless and lack any personality whatsoever. They’re awful.

          Happy now? Chill, bro. Chill.

        • Reply

          The background, foreground and sprite art styles are inconsistent. Are they trying to make it look retro? Modern? Cartoony? Realistic?

        • Reply

          And don’t pull the “opinion” card. That’s not an argument, by any stretch of the imagination.”

          Well, it kinda is.

          Since he is not trying to state a factual statement.

          “Yeah, it’s his opinion, and his opinion sucks. And I went there.”

          And you talk about what one should / shouldn’t use in a debate… non-sequential hypocrisy?

        • Reply

          @ Travelsonic

          “Please don’t state the bloody fucking obvious” was the point I was driving at, dude. I don’t need to be told it’s someone’s opinion and telling me that it’s someone’s opinion doesn’t do a damn thing to counter or support… well, anything.

  • Reply

    IGNL “I guess if you’re a purist, you’ll hate this. But, really, if you are a purist, just go play a port of the original game”

    Wow, that’s so professional. There are several parts of the review that sound like they were written by a 10 year old :/

  • Reply

    This is exactly why I love Joystiq and hate sites like IGN.

  • Reply

    the game is somwhat bad because of itsjust because you can walk up walls, do a homing attact,and you can mess up on loops sometimes…. even that the game does not deserve 3.5 stars out of 5 or 6! we got a final boss and a menu to save super sonic, outstanding graphics,and a remake of sonic 1 😀 now tell me sonic fans go to mario and leave sonic alone just cause he can walk up walls just stfu already! what you dumba**es dont know is that sega made alot of money for this game so sega dosent care for its fans technicly they just wanna make a honest 10,000 dollars at the end of their sells! do you know how much those so called bad sonic game made like up to 50,000 dollars for sega for each of those games ! count that fell stupid and die! -_-

    • Reply

      See, you’d think for having the physics right almost 20 years ago Sega wouldn’t really expend much money on it at all. In fact it would’ve probably been MUCH cheaper had they just used Sonic 3’s engine and just made Sonic 4 as if it was a simple expansion upon 3.

      But they didn’t. They made a 3D model of Sonic which was much more expensive, and from what I’m hearing, used Rush’s godawful physics. As fans we’ve created a big list of features and elements that would constitute as a good Sonic game and we’ve been begging Sega for the past whatever amount of time to do it. And they still got it wrong here. IMO, it would’ve probably been cheaper to use 2D sprites (and it would’ve shut fans the fuck up), but here you’re saying that they put a lot of money into it. 3D polygons really don’t add anything to a Sonic game; 1-3 prove that beyond a shadow of a doubt. And I reiterate: they got the physics right almost 20 years ago.

      “we got a final boss and a menu to save super sonic…”
      Have you played Sonic 3? Don’t say these features are revolutionary for a Sonic game. They’re not.

      “technicly they just wanna make a honest 10,000 dollars at the end of their sells! do you know how much those so called bad sonic game made like up to 50,000 dollars for sega for each of those games !”
      They’re a business, and if you’re getting at that people will still buy crappy Sonic games just because they have “Sonic” on the title, then well, you have a point. *insert reference to Mega64’s video here* Some fans might even say any profit off of Unleashed, ’06, and Black Knight is dishonest, but I wouldn’t go THAT far.

      Go back to Mario, you say? Sonikkusda… are you under 15? Or do you work at Sega? Fed up with with the fans, perhaps? The Sonic fanbase isn’t going to apologize that we have complaints, especially about what’s supposed to be a successor to 3. I sure as hell won’t.

      And this is completely off topic, but word of advice: Run-on sentences won’t make your arguments sound intelligent or legitimate. But that’s just me.

      • Reply

        I’m surprised you took the time to decipher that block of text in order to respond to it!

    • Reply

      “count that fell stupid and die! -_-”
      lolwut

  • Reply

    Amuses me that the fanbase can’t even agree on what they think of the reviews 🙂 Oi

    • Reply

      Somebody missed the point.

  • Reply

    Like always, I agree with retro again. The joystiq review is indeed good and fun fac. Ken Balough couldn’t understand why joystiq gave it such a bad review and was kind of upset with it. I tried to explain how it was a dissapointing game for people that actually like the classics, which are the so called audience they were going for (NOT). Don’t really know if he took t hat well.

  • Reply

    I, personally, am somewhat torn on Sonic 4.

    The physics are quite a bit broken, there’s no doubt about that, but there’re times that it’s pretty fun, from my experience with the trial. I quite like the addition of the Homing Attack in a 2D (moar liek 2.5D amirite?) Sonic game, but Sonic 4 just isn’t a 1200 MS Point game to me, nor is it worth whatever it costs on the Wii and PS3. If Sega fixes the physics and makes the graphics better in Episode 2, then it might be worth the money. I mean really, those graphics just do NOT look good. At least, not Sonic’s. His need to be a bit revamped. The water in Splash Hill looks awesome, so all that would need to be fixed is to make Sonic’s not so…cel-shaded.

  • Reply

    Great post as usual – here is a little something that made me smile
    Have you ever noticed that if you rearranged the letters in mother in law, they come out to Woman Hitler?

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