- Awesome Music: This is a Sonic Team game, after all. The entire soundtrack was composed by Tomoko Sasaki, who would quickly become more famous for her work on NiGHTS into Dreams..., which was released in 1995 just like Ristar.
- Breather Level: The second zone of Planet Automaton is fairly straightforward, especially when compared with the Spikes of Doom-tastic first zone and the final showdown with Greedy.
- Demonic Spiders: The only way to describe the enemies on Planet Automaton, they will hit you at least ONCE. That doesn't sound so bad until you realize you can only take four hits on the easiest difficulty setting...
- The birds' singing in Planet Sonata. It consists of rather low-quality squawks meant to work with the limited soundchip of the Sega Genesis, which is in contrast to the otherwise wonderful quality of the music itself that the birds are singing to.
- Ristar's angry expressions in the English release. While he does get angry as an Idle Animation during boss fights, the English release of the game also makes him angry everywhere else, and he's actually slightly more angrier than he looks against a boss. Even his ordinary standing sprite has his smile turned into an angry frown. This is rather awkward seeing as how his other happier animations (such as rocking to the music on Planet Sonata, or building a snowman in Planet Freon) are still present (and as an unintended Freeze-Frame Bonus, his original smiling sprite is shown to be visible for exactly one frame after landing if you pause the game at just the right time).
- Retroactive Recognition: Some of the staff that gained their fame through the Sonic the Hedgehog franchise had actually contributed to this game beforehand:
- Yuji Uekawa is the character designer behind Ristar. He would go on to work for the Sonic franchise, itself, most famously by redesigning all of the series' Classic era characters starting with Sonic Adventure.
- 1995 was the year Tomoko Sasaki became a well-known composer for Sega fans, having written music for both this game and for NiGHTS into Dreams.... One of her bigger contributions to the Sonic franchise is being the voice behind the Chao in Sonic Adventure and Sonic Adventure 2.
- Tear Jerker: Ristar's death animation. The screen fades to black and the last star representing his Life Meter crashes on his head, knocking him out cold.
- Too Good to Last: Thanks to the unfortunate timing of this game's release,note it didn't sell well, a sequel was planned but never made, and it ultimately fell into obscurity.
YMMV / Ristar