Sonic, our good old friend, already rescued the world several times from the evil. Now he had to do it again, but this time it was anything but easy because Dr. Eggman has several cards up his sleeve. He gets help from the so-called Phantom Crystals, which have an enormous mysterious power, and a new villain called Infinite. How good is it then, that the Sonic Team now gets active support from a new hero – ourselves.
The beginning of a new journey
At the beginning of Sonic Forces, we have the opportunity to choose the looks, outfit, and the weaponry. Thereby it is good to know that we can still make some changes during the game and we’re not only limited to that feature in the beginning. However, only the chosen weapon has an impact on the game itself. Because with the weapon you do not only checkmate opponents, but you can also interact differently with your surroundings. Depending on what hero type you decide to choose, you’ll even have different skills. As a wolf, for example, you can pull objects to you, and as a bird, you will be able to do a double jump. You can also decide for other species like bears, cats, dogs, rabbits or the hedgehog after all. But we already have the first flaw here. If you compare the created characters with the renowned from the game, they seem to be designed in a kind of careless way, because they don’t look good. They should have been more mindful of that aspect.
After creating our hero, we come to the first cutscene. Here we see Dr. Eggman who threatens our friends. Sonic storms towards the minions of Dr. Eggman and rescues Tails and Co this way. To top it all, there’s, of course, the new one – Infinite. Even Sonic cannot do anything about this mysterious and unknown opponent, and so it happens that Dr. Eggman can finally take Sonic into custody with his new-old allies. Thus, the world is about to end, and only the hero that we created before can turn the tables.
Directly into the events
After our heroic rescue of Sonic from the claws of Dr. Eggman, we’re now moving through the levels with Sonic.
Fans of the Sonic games will recognize most of them, which just comes across like rehashed content. Already in the first level one realizes immediately that the humor of the developers does not take effect. At least since Sacred 3 by Keen Games, one should have learned that you have to get out of your way with humor because just throwing in a bad joke once in a while is not well received. So, this whole thing is being dragged through 30 levels. In total, we reach a playtime of about 3 hours, which is way too less for our taste.
But mainly the way how the levels are being played is alarmingly bad. Some obstacles in there massively block the flow of the game and make it feel more sluggish, clunky and slow. On top of that, there are some levels like the waterslide which are almost impossible to play, since you always fall from the slide.
However, optically the levels are designed nicely. Even the old maps, like the already mentioned Green Hill, are depicted very well. Also, the switch between the 2D and 3D view is very dynamic and well done.
Besides traditional loopings, bumpers, and grinds, a few simple quick-time-events are on the agenda as well, like the already mentioned waterslide, pinball stunt with sonic as the ball, reversed gravitational forces or dives with limited breath. You can also borrow other avatars or players, and from time to time you’ll play in a team with changing leadership.
The control is convenient in general.
The different weapons like the Burst Wispon cannot only be used as a flamethrower, but also as a Rocket-Jump. The Cube Wispon can create additional platforms, which cannot only sometimes mask clumsiness. Furthermore, there’s a Drill, Void, Lightning, Asteroid and Hover Wispon, and all of them have different additional functions.
The Wispons, however, are only usable by the character that you created. Sonic himself can make his turbo sprints, chase attacks, quick steps or stomps as usual though.
And in general Sonic itself can be played much better than the character you create yourself because with this one the fun factor falls by the wayside.
What comes fast, goes fast
Like previously mentioned: Sonic Forces turned out rather short with its 3 hours of playtime. Including the extra and secret levels. The Shadow Episode that you can download for free indeed offers the possibility to play certain parts with Shadow, but only three levels are used here.
Players can also improve their ranks, scores, and medals, as well as get new clothing, but unfortunately, the excitement is limited here.