Released in late 2010, Sonic Colors is a main series installment of the Sonic the Hedgehog franchise, exclusive to Nintendo's Wii and DS platforms. Though the Wii and DS versions have slightly different stories to each other, the general premise of the game is the same.After apparently developing a sense of remorse for his past indiscretions, Dr. Eggman supposedly turns a new leaf and builds an intergalactic amusement park up in space, made up of several planet sized attractions. However, the amusement park is actually an assembly of planets that Eggman has pulled together, so that he might be able to capture the alien inhabitants here, known as Wisps, and harness their colored energy for his latest nefarious experiments. A Wisp named Yacker informs Sonic who, accompanied by Tails, embarks on a journey through the many attractions of Dr. Eggman's amusement park to free the imprisoned Wisps inhabiting each planet and thwart the Dr.'s Evil Plans.Much like Sonic the Hedgehog 4, this is one of Sega's answers to the fanbase's pleas for a better Sonic game. While Sonic 4 focuses on the classical gameplay aspects, Colors focuses on the constant speed that had become a staple of the Dimps-developed 2D Sonic games. The Wii version's stages are reminiscent of Sonic Unleashed's daytime stages (behind-the-back high-speed 3D sections combined with classic 2D— or "2½D"— platforming segments, though with a higher concentration of 2D sections), whereas the DS version is essentially Sonic Rush 3 under a different name (and, like that series, was developed by Dimps). In both versions, Sonic undertakes the high-speed platforming action he's well-known for. He can also harness the energy of the Wisps himself to activate special powers and clear new paths through the stages (though this gimmick is surprisingly not as prominent as one would expect from a Sonic game).It's also noteworthy that the game's script was penned by the writers of Happy Tree Friends and MadWorld.
Action Commands: Appears in a few spots in the DS version and to get AMAZING airtime off ramps in the Wii version. You only have to press the jump button in the latter case, though.
Added Alliterative Appeal: Rotatatron's Japanese name, Big Boy (which it is still called in the cutscene preceding the battle).
Affectionate Parody: Of recent Sonic plot and dialogue conventions. In fact, the game doesn't give you really any indication that it will be serious. The very first cut scene has lots of humor. In fact, the page quote up above is from the first cut scene in the game.
Anti-Grinding: You can't get infinite points when using the same wisp over and over, though you can get many nonetheless, insofar that spamming the drill can be a good way to get an S rank... if you don't take too long. After a certain time, depending on the stage, any bonuses you get are nullified.
Go for the Eye: The trick to defeating the Rotatatron and Refreshinator robots. The same is true for the Nega-Mother Wisp, a DS-only optional boss.
Automatic New Game: A textbook example; pressing the "start" button on a fresh file actually, get this, starts the game. Not even a cutscene until Act 2 is finished.
Arbitrary Skepticism: The genius fox with helicopter tails finds it hard to believe that a supersonic hedgehog onboard an amusement park space station surrounded by chained planets is able to absorb energy from aliens to briefly change into alternate forms.
Awesome, but Impractical: Super Sonic, while fun, disables Wisp powers, which makes getting a good rank with him very difficult. You do get Super Sonic bonuses while in that state, comparable to the Color Bonus.
Badass Boast: Sonic likes to make a point of yapping on about how hard he's gonna kick each boss's ass... even if they don't respond to his boasts in any way whatsoever. At one point Tails catches him doing this to an already dead robot and mocks him for it.
Sonic: You guys don't talk much, do you?
Bait-and-Switch Boss: Eggman initially sets up The mind controlled Tails as the boss of Starlight Carnival or Sweet Mountain (whichever comes third), but instead you wind up fighting one of his ships when he runs out of mind control juice and Tails gets released.
Big Brother Instinct: Sonic's protective nature to Tails shows up more than once near the end of the Wii version.
Big Eater: The Frenzy Wisp form, which looks like a giant set of crocodile jaws and chomps through enemies and obstacles alike. And it grows larger the more it devours, if you manage to keep it going for a while it becomes huge. On top of that— the more it eats and the bigger it gets, it soon becomes able to chomp through things even faster, making it that much easier to get him to the next level in terms of size, until you're able to mow through everything without any trouble.
Eggman: "Would Sonic the Hedgehog please report to the security office? Sonic the Hedgehog, please report to the security office. We've found your... ehh... your keys! Yes, that's it, we've found your keys! No need to be ready for a trap, since we only wish to return your keys."
Eggman: "Please do not be concerned if you encounter any screaming aliens. The screams are how they communicate. Really. I promise."
Bond Creatures: The Wisps have this property, allowing Sonic to merge with each one to briefly transform into a composite creature with the same colour and texture as the Wisp but with hedgehog-like characteristics.
Bonus Boss: In the DS version, the Nega-Mother Wisp.
With the title screen of all things. The shot of Sonic running through space with all eight Wisps flying beside him is mirrored at the end of the Nega-Wisp Armor fight, right before the Final Color Blaster.
Also, Sonic and Tails' adventure begins and ends in the hyper-accelerating elevator from the world to Eggman's interstellar amusement park. Only, the way back down is a lot more epic.
Boss Remix: The use of an orchestrated version of Reach For The Starsin the later part of the Nega-Wisp Armor fight.
Bottomless Pits: Present in a lesser quantity than other Sonic games. Most of them are marked by a "!" sign on screen, as long as the Navigator option is turned on. (The game features a lot of pits that Sonic has to drop down in 2D segments, and it'd be slightly annoying to know what to avoid and which pits are safe without this option.)
Bottle Episode: Sega developed the game exclusively for Wii to keep the budget down. Despite this, many consider it to be the series' best game in nearly ten years and a return to form for the franchise.
Brainwashed and Crazy: Tails, albeit very briefly, when Eggman zaps him with a mind control beam. Eggman's master plan is to do this to the entire planet.
Bragging Rights Reward: Super Sonic, unlocked after you collect all 180 Special Rings and clear all levels in the Sonic Simulator.
Tails: "Where'd you run off to?" Sonic: "I did a little shopping, grabbed a bite to eat, and trashed a giant killer robot." Tails: "Really? They've got shopping here, too?" Sonic: "This place has everything!"
Brutal Honesty: Roughly half of all Dr. Eggman's announcements in this game are this.
Eggman: "Please feel free to fill out a brief survey after your visit. Your opinions matter to us! — Unless you didn't have fun. Then we don't care." Eggman: "Please do not touch or lean on the glass, as it is the only thing between you and ten million gallons of freezing wet death." Eggman: "We seem to be losing pressure on Level 17. Please hold your breath against the harsh vacuum of space until you pass out from oxygen starvation. After that, you won't care. Enjoy the ride!"
Buffy Speak: By Sonic, when he and Tails are exploring Planet Wisp.
Sonic: "You know, as alien as this place is, there is something very... Eggman-ish about it."
Chekhov's Gun: The arm of the first boss (Rotatatron in the Wii game, Globotron in the DS game) gets stuck into Eggman's mind control cannon, causing it to backfire when he tries to fire it. In the scene it ends up stuck, it is focused upon for a few seconds, making it clear that it is going to be important later on.
Circling Birdies: The star variation pops up when one is jumped on by another player in Co-Op Mode.
Combination Attack: Usable in the co-op mode. Also appears twice during the final boss fight:
The boss itself, the Nega-Wisp Armor, will sometimes mix attacks — Cube/Spikes or Cube/Laser are the most common.
The Final Color Blaster, which is all of the Wisps joining Sonic in one supercharged Homing Attack/Sonic Boost.
Comic Trio: Eggman (schemer), Cubot (follower), and Orbot (straight man) form this.
Conspicuously Light Patch: In Asteroid Coaster Act 1, there are asteroid rings floating in the open space areas, one of which are brighter than the others in each ring. Guess which ones can be homing attacked on.
Continuing Is Painful: Unlike the more recent Sonic games, your score doesn't reset to zero when you are killed. Unfortunately, neither does your time; it continues from where it was when you died, and can significantly damage your rank. And since once you reach a certain point timewise in a level, you cannot earn any more points at all.
For that matter, adjusting from playing Unleashed and Generations on an HD console to Colors using Remote + Nunchuk is no picnic either.
Sometimes, Sonic has a Double Jump. Sometimes, Sonic has a Homing Attack. This fact might kill you many times over.
Going directly from the Rush Series the the DS version of this game might be a huge pain, especially if you were good at remaining in the air. The controls and mechanics have only a few similarities to the Rush games', mostly taking after the console version instead.
Significantly, Tails is only a Deadpan Snarker in the English version. His snarking has been surgically removed from the Japanese version.
Sonic has become this after the previous games downplayed it.
Demoted to Extra: Longtime Sonic regulars such as Amy, Knuckles, and Shadow are completely excised from the Wii version, but in the DS version, they make short appearances in the cutscenes between levels and sometimes give Sonic missions.
The Chaos Emeralds also go from being a central plot point of the series to an optional extra sidequest in both versions.
Denser And Wackier: The story and dialogue overall is much more cartoony and surreal than recent titles, especially compared to the previous Darker and Edgier titles in the series. The occasionally insane dialogue is toned down slightly in the DS version, but still extremely lighthearted and whimsical in tone.
Descending Ceiling: Some areas in Starlight Carnival have them. They are usually bypassed through the use of the Blue Wisp.
There's also an example in Aquarium Park Act 1 where there's spikes lining the ceiling, and the platform you're on rises towards them. Thankfully, you don't get crushed.
Development Gag: Aquarium Park is based on an old concept for a Japan-themed zone that originates from preproduction sketches of the original Sonic the Hedgehog game.
Ever wonder why there is a pool ball in the Sonic Simulator/Game Land stages? In the first, original Sonic game, Eggman's checker ball weapon was actually a stage obstacle in preproduction, and it did basically the same thing the pool ball does.
Eggman: "The unfiltered starlight from the lovely constellations above you is full of deadly radiation! Help yourself to our complimentary SPF 3000 starblock. And by "complimentary", I mean quite expensive."
Eggman: "Welcome to the Sweet Mountain. Insulin will be provided at a marginal extra cost. And by "marginal", we mean enormous."
With the Red Wisp, Sonic can perform an infinite number of double jumps as long as he has the Wisp power.
Sonic has learned to jump underwater infinitely.
Double Take: An implied instance of this was given in one of the P As in the opening level, where Eggman tries to report to the owner of a silver levitating vehicle that it's been broken into and presumably vandalized, only to discover just as he's repeating himself that the vehicle he's describing is in fact his Egg Mobile.
Dynamic Loading: This is achieved in part by hiding the level loading underneath the title screen for each level, which the player expects to see for a few seconds just as is traditional with the series. It flows so naturally that one hardly notices.
Eat The Camera: Sonic does this in the opening sequence in Frenzy form.
Either World Domination or Something about Bananas: When Tails tests out his translator, it brings up a "translation" that isn't even remotely contextual to what's actually said. Cue Face Palm from both Sonic and the alien. The translator works correctly in the DS version from the get-go, though.
"The Wisps are "either being used for their magical powers by an evil man, or to make underwear to be worn by salad."
Escape Pod: "In the unlikely event of an emergency, please find the nearest escape pod. For anyone not named 'Eggman', your escape pod can be found back on the planet, still being assembled in the factory."
Exposition Fairy: Tails and Yacker, simultaneously. Yacker doesn't give hints during gameplay, though the information he relays to Tails for translation does help Sonic and Tails figure out what Eggman is up to.
Extreme Omnivore: When Sonic absorbs a Purple/Nega or Violet/Nega Wisp, he seems to become one of these. It's difficult to tell whether he's actually eating everything in his way or just crushing it with his jaws, though.
Sonic and Yacker (facetentacle in the latter's case) do one—in unison, no less—when Tails' translator isn't working properly at first.
Tails: Okay, he says his name is "Talks-a lot" and he's from a far-away soda and where flowers water them with dances.
Tails gives one when he catches Sonic talking to a broken robot, though it's more amused than exasperated. Sonic then does one shortly after when Tails refuses to drop the "talking to dead robots" subject.
Eggman does a facepalm when he remembers why he changed Cubot's voice chip.
Orbot makes a facepalm too when Cubot thought Eggman literally wanted them to get cheeseburger and a shake.
Fake Longevity: Totally and completely averted. The red rings and the S ranks are completely optional. In fact, you can't fight any boss as Super Sonic (gotten through the red rings). So all of that really is for fun and not for completion of the regular game. It can take 40+ hours to finish the game if you are going for all red rings and S ranks, but only 10-15 if you are going for the regular game only.
Fan Nickname: Sonic Skittles, referring to either the game itself or the Final Color Blaster.
Fanservice / Fan Disservice: The camera has a tendency to deliver disturbing closeups of Tails' ass during some cutscenes when it's actually trying to focus on Sonic.
Fartillery: On the other end. And so begins this conversation.
Tails: At first I thought that Yacker was talking about how Baldy Mc Nosehair was using burps to do it.
Sonic: Hmmm, he is pretty gassy. Maybe the smell would knock 'em out. I dunno, something doesn't seem right with that.
Tails: That's what I said! It made no sense. Then I made a tiny adjustment and realized he was saying "generators."
Sonic: So no burps? That's a relief.
Tails: Tell me about it.
Fast Tunnelling: The Yellow Wisps, used to get to secret rooms and alternate routes through a given level.
Fighting Your Friend: Subverted: Eggman's mind control ray on Tails runs out of energy just before he and Sonic can fight.
Final Boss: Dr. Eggman. At least in the Wii version.
Fission Mailed: Terminal Velocity - Act 2. It's impossible to get to the 'end' and get a rank on it, since the black hole sucks Sonic in, no matter what you do. Good thing the Wisps bail him out of it, though.
Fixed Camera - The solution for the seemingly never ending camera issues of the previous games.
Flashback: In the Wii version, a flashback, shown at the beginning of the game, showed how Sonic and Tails got to the Incredible Interstellar Amusement Park. On the DS, this scene is instead shown where it chronologically belongs.
Frickin' Laser Beams: The Cyan Wisp can turn Sonic into a laser beam, able to shoot through enemies and bounce along electric coils and crystals. The laser-spamming bosses are present too, like standard in Sonic series.
Flight: The Orange Wisp turns Sonic into a rocket, allowing him to blast straight up into the air, destroying enemies and obstacles along the way.
Gameplay and Story Segregation: One can easily tell that during Terminal Velocity Act 2, Sonic is supposed to be running at top speed, but since it's a playable act - especially having no boost available - it sure doesn't look like it.
Inversely, the first two levels give Sonic access to the white Wisps for the boost and end with him hitting containers in order to free them despite him not becoming aware of their presence or capture until confronting Orbot and Cubot, which is particularly odd since they did omit use of the cyan Wisp until after the first cutscene.
Getting Crap Past the Radar: One suspects that the difficulty in hearing Eggman's tannoy announcements is part of Sega's attempt to get a PEGI-3 and E-for-Everyone rating; some of the things he says approach Portal levels of black humor.
Giant Enemy Crab: One pops up as a miniboss in Aquarium Park and Terminal Velocity; it rapidly turns into That One Boss if you can't figure out how he telegraphs his moves.
Giant Space Flea from Nowhere: In the DS version. The only few hints about Nega-Mother Wisp can be found in some cutscenes from Asteroid Coaster.
Gratuitous English: Sonic in the Japanese version - it's practically tradition for him, after all. The names of the Wisps are in English in both versions (both colour and name - for example, "Yellow Drill" is still "Yellow Drill" in the Japanese version, though "Pink Spikes" (plural) is "Pink Spike" (singular) in Japanese). The level names are unchanged between versions, too (even Game Land and Options Satellite have the same names in both versions).
Green Aesop: Finally makes its appearance as the main theme of a Sonic game again in over 10 years. Eggman's using living creatures to power his machines and even some enemies, his most well-known trick from the Genesis days. It's most blatant in the Planet Wisp area, especially if you saw the intro movie, which showed off just how happy those cute little alien squids were before Eggman came along and messed with them...
Lampshaded by several of the park PA announcements.
Eggman: "The foliage you see was pilfered from various environmentally-fragile climates. Please enjoy them, as they are the last of their kind."
Eggman: "This exotic aquarium contains many rare and endangered species. Enjoy them with a delicious soy glaze at the Bucket O' Sushi restaurant!"
Eggman: "We here at Eggman's Incredible Interstellar Amusement Park consider ourselves the universe's first fully "green" amusement park! ...Although the green is from all the nausea and vomiting, but still — green is green!"
Eggman:(in high-speed "disclaimer" voice) "Some displacement of indigenous population and destruction of natural resources may occur. Eggman Enterprises not responsible."
Ground Pound: Unlike in the HD versions of Sonic Unleashed, he can now do the Stomp from the beginning of the game. The Blue Wisp grants a more powerful version that destroys all enemies and Wisp Blocks on screen.
Guide Dang It: Some of those red rings are next to impossible to find without at least exploring the stage you're on.
A relatively minor one by comparison: you can only obtain one chaos emerald per world in the DS version, and Terminal Velocity does not have an emerald. For most people, it will never dawn on them that the last emerald is actually located in the versus section of the game.
High Speed Battle: Like in Sonic Unleashed, three of the game's bosses are this sort of battle: the Frigate Orcan in Starlight Carnival, the Frigate Skullian in Asteroid Coaster, and the Nega-Wisp Armor, but only in the Wii version.
Hover Tank: The Wii-exclusive Green Wisp's power is to turn Sonic into an organic version of this, which also allows him to fly across trails of rings.
The DS-exclusive Violet Wisp is a mix of this (aside from ring trail abilities) and the ability to suck a lot of things up.
100% Completion: One must get all the Red Rings and S Ranks to achieve this.
If You Can Read This: In the final cutscene Tails translates Yacker's speech on Miles electric, which is in Hexadecimal format. The first two lines of hex translate exactly to what Yacker was saying. But the additional bit at the bottom display reads, "If you can read this, you are a geek."
Sonic: "I know you're trying to be clever with this whole amusement park pun thing, but it's just coming off lame."
In Medias Res: The story begins with Sonic and Tails already at the amusement park. In fact, there's no opening cutscene to the game; you immediately play the first two acts upon starting a new file.
Invincible Minor Minion: A few acts in Starlight Carnival have metallic Spinas in them, which can be homing attacked indefinitely but can't be destroyed in any way. Justified in that they must be used as stepping stones via the homing attack to reach higher platforms.
Irony: An in-universe example of Situational Irony: after getting defeated, Dr. Eggman gets to hear the exact same "your safety is most important to us" speech he recorded himself just as his amusement park is collapsing into a black hole.
Eggman: "Please beware of the spikes on the Asteroid Coaster, they are sharp. ...Really, we have to warn people about spikes? Like they won't notice the spikes; I mean, come on, the cars are nothing but spikes! Unbelievable! — Wh — uh — my what is still on?"
Level Ate: Sweet Mountain Zone, especially Act 2, parts of which have Sonic going around a giant cheeseburger filled with cake and jellybeans. Eggman's PA Announcements deconstruct food-themed stages a bit.
Eggman: "We know they may look delicious, but please refrain from licking the rides... That would be disgusting. Do you know where those rides have been?! People have been sitting on those rides! With their butts! ...Okay, go ahead; lick them. Don't say we didn't warn you." Eggman: "There's no line at "Bake-Me-Crazy", the ride that simulates what it's like to be baked like a cake! The ride itself lasts an amazing 20-25 minutes, or until golden brown. Not recommended for our guests who are sensitive to temperatures exceeding 350°." Eggman: "We hope you are enjoying this sunny day here at the park. Sadly, a sunny day means that the Choco Coaster is out of order... due to melting."
Levels Take Flight: Two stages in the Wii version, one in Starlight Carnival and another in Aquarium Park, have Sonic needing to keep up with some flying device with springs at its top, causing Sonic to constantly bounce. It flies slowly but steadily to the end of the stage.
The DS version, on the other hand, plays this straight to an extent: only Sonic, Tails, Eggman, Orbot, Cubot, and the Wisps actually have an effect on the general plot; the others are relegated to simple side-missions one can (of course) easily ignore.
Long Song, Short Scene: "Nega-Wisp Armor - Phase 2", in the DS version, at least. The piece lasts for a while, actually. Nega-Wisp Armor Phase 2 takes about ten seconds to beat though; you'll probably win just as you realize that it's an arrangement of the theme song.
True to a lesser degree with the second part of the Wii final boss theme. The song is three minutes long, but most players will finish off the boss in a minute or less.
Marathon Level: The EGG Shuttle (also known as Challenge Mode), which requires you to play through the entire game in one sitting, with no cutscenes or world map...or Super Sonic. While Sega's online leaderboards for this mode are designed for score attacks, sites like The Sonic Center have set up time attack leaderboards for this mode too.
Morphic Resonance: Most of Sonic's Wisp forms share the same design aspects; yellow, pupiless eyes, ears and spiky protusions. All of these design aspects resemble the normal form's eyes, ears and quills to a great extent.
Mutually Exclusive Powerups: The Wisps. If you have a Wisp and obtain another one of a different kind, the one you had gets released so your new one can take its place. The one exception is the white Wisp, which replenishes your boost meter and can be collected regardless of whether you have another Wisp or not.
In the Wii version, an orchestrated version of "Reach for the Stars" plays when Eggman's Nega-Wisp Armor is down to its last two hits of damage.
In the DS version, the same theme plays when Sonic fights his way through the Nega-Wisp Armor in the Final Color Blaster form, and throughout the fight with the Nega-Mother Wisp.
Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: When Sonic destroyed Rotatatron/Globatron, an arm got lodged into a nearby structure, which turned out to be part of the mind control cannon. When Eggman tried to fire it, the cannon backfired. The resulting energy created two things: a Nega Hyper-Go-On black hole that consumed the amusement park and, if evidence is correct, the primordial essence known as the Time Eater. Basically, Sonic caused Sonic Generations to occur by destroying the first boss of Colors.
Nitro Boost: Aside from the usual boost pads present in the series, this game also has the White Wisp, used as fuel for the Sonic Boost instead of rings.
Eggman: No aliens were harmed in the creation of this park. ...They were harmed after the park was created.
No Endor Holocaust: The instruction manual mentions crowds gathering for the opening day of the amusement park, but not a single visitor is seen in the course of the game. Then again, the first cutscene features Sonic and Tails mentioning that they've snuck in before the real opening, so it's very possible that no-one else was in the park.
No OSHA Compliance: Eggman has taken so many budget cuts with the amusement park, he doesn't even try to hide it.
Eggman: Please refrain from peeling off the special space-age polymer holding the starship together. It may look and feel like duct tape, but it's not; it's called — erm — Spacetape. Very advanced stuff. Eggman: Due to cost restraints, some of the doughnuts in this ride are of the day-old variety. We apologize for this cost-cutting measure, and hope that you enjoy the ride. Eggman: Next stop: Planet Wisp. This attraction is currently off-limits, as it is still under construction and may not be dangerous enough for visitors yet.
Nostalgia Level: Certain levels of Game Land use designs from Sonic 1. Act 1-1◊ resembles Green Hill Zone, with Marble (2-1), Spring Yard (4-1), Labyrinth (5-1), Star Light (7-1), and Scrap Brain (3-2) all appearing as well.
Oblivious To His Own Description: One of Eggman's PA messages has him informing the "owner" of "a white hovercar shaped like an egg" that said car was broken into. He only realizes what happened once he repeats the message.
Offscreen Start Bonus: Act 4 of Aquarium Park contains a red ring, several other items and an alternate path on the left of the starting point.
Eggman: Please keep your hands and feet in the car at all times, because there are tiny asteroids traveling at incredible speed hurtling through space. Keeping your hands and feet in the car won't prevent you from being hit, but our lawyers tell us we have to say it anyway.
Palmtree Panic: Tropical Resort. The dirt even has the same texture as the ground in Palmtree Panic.
Phlegmings: Sonic in Purple Frenzy form appears to spew copious amount of dark saliva whilst he's rampaging about.
Pinball Scoring: You can easily earn over a hundred thousand points in the first thirty seconds of a level, with the S-rank frequently surpassing the one million point mark. Compare, for example, Sonic the Hedgehog (2006), wherein fifty thousand points was the default bar for top rank.
Pinball Zone: Starlight Carnival appears to be one of these, at least with its neon motif.
Polygon Ceiling: Finallyaverted in the Wii version. The camera is generally good when you're in control, the levels are streamlined to fit the pace of the game, and the controls are fixed for the most part.
Post Final Boss: The black hole that Sonic tries to outrun after beating the Egg Nega Wisp. It's just a half-minute final run that only consists of Quickstepping or jumping at the right times.
Second Hour Superpower: The DS version is basically Sonic Rush 3, but you do the first act without the boost. After the first zone, you get the first major wisp. The Wii version has the boost to start with, but the first major wisp isn't until Act 3 of Tropical Resort.
Though to be fair, the planet in Sonic CD was called Little Planet for a very good reason. These 5 planets (technically 3, plus a star fleet and an asteroid field) were significantly larger than Little Planet.
Sequel Difficulty Drop: The difficulty is much easier than that of Unleashed, due to much fewer obstacles that require quick reaction, and the stages are much shorter.
Shark Tunnel: The Wii version has one at the beginning of Aquarium Park Act 1.
Tails: "Ugh, just thinking about it makes my head feel like it wants to-" *explosion*
Story to Gameplay Ratio: Average for a Sonic game (that is, mostly gameplay). What sets it apart is that the gameplay starts mere seconds after pressing Start, with absolutely no introductory cutscene.
Super Mode: Obtained in the Wii version after collecting all 7 Chaos Emeralds and 180 Red Rings. In the DS version, it's used only for the True Final Boss.
Suspiciously Specific Denial: "This amusement park was constructed entirely out of a sense of remorse for my past transgressions, and is in no way associated with any sort of evil plot or premeditated misdeeds."
The Stinger - The 15 minute credit sequence is followed by a scene of Eggman, Cubot, and Orbot blaming each other for the latest failure.
This Is a Drill: The Yellow Wisp, which allows Sonic to drill through soft ground. Some of the enemies also have drill noses and will track you down. There is also the boss of Planet Wisp in the DS version, which uses drills.
This Is Gonna Suck: Sonic: *facepalm + sigh* This might not end well. His words before trying to outrun a Black Hole
Timed Mission: Sort of. You can stay in a stage as long as you want, but after passing a particular time, "TIME'S UP" appears under the score counter and you can't score any more points, not even end-of-stage bonuses.
Totally Radical: Mostly averted: The vast majority of Sonic's slang is either unique to him or comparatively current, such as his use of "epic" in one of the first lines of the game.
Tractor Beam: Used by Eggman to gather the planets together for use in his Incredible Interstellar Amusement Park.
Traveling-Pipe Bulge: The elevators in Tropical Resort in the DS version do that when Sonic enters them. So do the pipes when Sonic goes into them with the Yellow Drill power.
Turns Red: Some of the bosses turns reddish in color when they are down to their last hits.
Under the Sea: Aquarium Parknote Yes, that means Sonic can go underwater without dying instantly. Of course, you have to come up for air; otherwise you'll hearthis tune that haunted many a veteran Sonic player. But still, Sonic can actually swim... sorta. He can Spin Jump infinitely to get to the top quickly, although Aquarium Park's water is so deep that you might be better off using the air bubbles. And, unlike a real hedgehog, Sonic can easily jump high out of the water. (Real hedgehogs can swim but have trouble getting out of water.)
In the Wii version, at least. The DS version gives Sonic his traditional inability to swim.
Eggman: "Attention—the anti-gravity toilets on this level are out of order. We are sorry for this inconvenience, and hope that you can hold it for the next 20,000 light years."
Is that true Unit Confusion? Since light years is a measure of distance, and "can you hold it for a few miles" is common road-trip lingo, and the level that announcement sounds off in is the spaceship fleet... Either way, the entirety of Eggman's Interstellar Amusement Park is very far from being even one square light year, and doesn't appear to be going anywhere.