I'd heard a lot about Sonic 2006, so I bought it out of curiosity recently. While the glitches do drag down the game and seriously hurt it at some points, I see what Sega was going for, and I've concluded that this could have possibly been the next Sonic Adventure 1, albeit with plot holes and even more Narm. Let's take a look:
- It's clear they were aiming for a Western audience that would presumably want something "cool". That explains the realistic graphics (including realistic looking humans), moody music, and dramatic story. I think the effort is admirable, and I like it. I don't want all Sonic games to be like this, but if they try both light-hearted games and more melodramatic games like this one, then I'd be happy with the variety.
- The towns are much large than Station Square in Sonic Adventure, with dozens of citizens walking about, making it feel more alive. You can even run along the rooftops, and are encouraged to explore. I like that.
- Each of the 9 characters has distinctly different abilities, and none of them are clones of others. I like Blaze the Cat in particular.
- There's WAYYY too much emphasis on combat. Lots of "defeat enemies to move on" areas. Possibly a result of aiming for a "cool" audience (may also explain the enemy radar). Slows the game down a lot.
- The levels are very long. This is both good and bad, as failure can be frustrating if you run out of lives, and long levels can be boring if you don't like the particular level. But it's good to see a fun level like Crisis City or Kingdom Valley be a lot longer than levels in other Sonic games.
- Sonic himself is noticeably slower than in the 3D Sonic games preceding this one. A real disappointment.
- You can homing attack grind rails now, which makes them easier to use. A welcome addition.
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