Sonic Adventure has been highlighted throughout Sonic’s history as both one of his peak moments (Along with the ever-controversial Sonic Adventure 2), as well as the game that started the downfall of Sonic. Indeed, it can be a controversial subject between the Sonic fans out there, from some wanting a Sonic Adventure 3 to others even defecting from the franchise once the original was released.
This is also the game where the arguably infamous “Modern Sonic” character designs were introduced, as well as some other new things such as Dr Robotnik now also being referred to by his (At this point derogatory) nickname, Eggman.
The plot is fairly simple. Dr Robotnik once again wishes to conquer the world and build “Robotnikland”, this time on the ruins of Station Square where a lot of the game takes place. This time, he has released Chaos, the God of Destruction from the Master Emerald, and is after the Chaos Emeralds to feed the monster with so that it can become more powerful.
The gameplay of Sonic Adventure (SA1) is arguably similar to that of the classic Sonic games, only featured in 3D. Additionally, there are now six total playable characters featured in the game – Sonic the Hedgehog, Miles “Tails” Prower the Fox, Knuckles the Echidna, Amy Rose, and the two new characters – Big the Cat and E-102 Gamma. All of these characters have their own unique playstyle, ranging from basic momentum based platforming to fishing – and quite a bit in between.
Sonic the Hedgehog
Sonic is played just like he was in the classic games. He can run around, spindash and use the spin attack, and is also equipped with a few new moves, the most notable of these being the Homing Attack, which was first seen as a shield power up in Sonic 3D. This allows Sonic to quickly home in on enemies, and was introduced due to the new 3D environments to make attacking enemies easier.
The goal of Sonic’s stages is simply to get to the goal. Sonic has 10 stages.
Miles “Tails” Prower
Tails is played very similarly to Sonic, except he now loses his spindash ability and can also fly for a short period of time.
His stage goal is to race Sonic (And in his final stage, Dr Robotnik) to the end. He has a total of 5 stages.
Knuckles the Echidna
Knuckles’ controls are again similar to those of Sonic and Tails, however, he has a few different moves. He can now attack with his fists, and can dig into the ground to find items or Emerald Shards.
The goal of each of Knuckles’ stages is to find 3 Emerald Shards hidden around the area – in Badniks, underground, in various level-specific gimmick items and even lying out in the open. Knuckles has a total of 5 stages.
Amy controls a lot slower than most of the main cast. Her controls differ in that she has a lot of moves taken away and a lot of moves added focusing around the gimmick of using her Piko Piko hammer.
Her stage goal is to avoid the robot who is chasing her, E-100 Alpha, known more commonly as ZERO, and make it to the baloon at the end of each stage. Her stages are more puzzle oriented, and she has a total of 3 stages.
Gamma has probably one of the most touching stories I have ever seen a robot go through in a video game. He controls quite differently to the other characters, and the idea of his gameplay is to lock on to enemies and fire at them to gain more time on the clock to complete the stage. His stages are fast paced, and personally, very enjoyable, though admittedly the timer gets on my nerves in some later levels.
His goal is to make it to the end of the stage and defeat his robot brothers, so he can save the birds which are trapped inside them. He has a total of 5 stages.
It is also notable that while Gamma himself did not reappear in SA2, or indeed, any other games since, he has had several cameos in future games such as Sonic Battle and his E series model was used by Dr Robotnik in SA2 as an enemy featured in some stages. Additionally, his gameplay style would be reused in SA2 also with Tails and Dr Robotnik, though the timer would be removed.
Big the Cat
Well what do we have here? Fishing, eh? In a Sonic game? With terrible controls? And an entire four stages of it?
Oh dear… if it weren’t for Big, I could safely call myself a Sonic Adventure (1) fan. However, Big’s gameplay is just… disastrous. I am aware that Sonic Team’s goal with Big was for it to act as a sort of break from the fast paced action of the rest of the game, and I suppose that’s fine… but Dear Lord. I am at a loss for words to describe Big’s stages… they’re long, slow (At least, they will be until you get the hang of them. And even then… ugh…), and can be terribly frustrating at times.
Big gets a total of 4 stages in which the goal is to fish for and catch his pet frog, Froggy. Personally, I’d have preferred Amy to get 4 stages and Big to get 3. Oh, well.
Once you’ve completed all six main stories, the final story is unlocked. You play as Super Sonic in a fight with Perfect Chaos, where you use Super Sonic to fly over the water in the ruins of Station Square (Hmm… I guess you could argue Robotnik kind of won, there. I mean he did intend to destroy Station Square as at least a part of his plan.) and avoid the projectiles which are fired at you.
I have never used the Chao Garden for more than five minutes. So I honestly can’t tell you much about it. I’m sorry. I have let you, the reader, down, and I offer my sincere apologies. I am going to try and find either 1. A second opinion on the Chao Garden to fully complete this review, or 2. Actually use the Chao Garden and add in something about it. Again, until then, my sincere apologies to you.
The music in the game is amazing, and the main theme, Open Your Heart, performed by Crush 40 is absolutely spectacular. I have to say, it’s my favourite Crush 40 song to date – I’d even say it beats Live and Learn, simply because of the guitarwork. The graphics are also pretty slick, but I’ll be honest. I never owned a Dreamcast (Or even a GameCube), so honestly, I can’t rate what they are compared to other Dreamcast games. All I will say is that I quite like them.
… I must admit, I was expecting to come into this review and begin to rant and rave at how much I detest Sonic Adventure. In case you’re curious, I first played it this summer when I downloaded it onto my PS3 as a birthday present. But to be honest, after writing this, I look at it a little differently. Sonic Adventure really is an enjoyable game, for the most part. Granted there are some issues here and there with occasionally awkward controls, a glitchy camera, Big’s gameplay, and a few areas of bad level design, but on the whole Sonic Adventure really is a good Sonic game, and all things considered, I think it does a good job of placing itself in Sonic history as the first ever fully 3D Sonic game.
Sonic Adventure is available on the original SEGA Dreamcast, the Nintendo GameCube (This is a graphically enhanced port version; however, many glitches are not fixed and some new ones exist), the PlayStation Network, and XBOX Live Arcade.
Posted by Bot on Nov 29, 2011Tags: Adventure, PlayStation Store, PSN, review, SEGA Dreamcast, Sonic, Sonic Adventure, Sonic Team, Sonic The Hedgehog, XBL, XBOX Live Arcade