Sonic Lost World (Wii U) Initial Thoughts

Hold your horses, or furry blue hedgehog.

This isn’t your typical Sonic game.

The fast and furious gameplay that made the character legendary is still there, but it appears Sega’s has taken a line out of John Hughes’ “Ferris Beuller’s Day Off.”

“The world moves pretty fast sometimes. If you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it. ”

With a revamped control scheme and focus on exploration, Sonic Lost World feels like Sega’s first attempt at making a more traditional platformer than the speed-infused adventure many of their most dedicated fans are used to. The early feeling is that it works, but takes time to get used to.

Think Super Mario galaxy with an undeniable Sega flair.

For the first time in the series, Sonic will not run unless you make him. With a press of the right shoulder button, Sonic will run and be able to access parts of the level he couldn’t by walking. With animals to free and red coins to find on every level, Sonic is rewarded for slowing down and taking in the scenery for a few seconds.

Dashing is also more focused. Requiring a press of left shoulder button, Sonic is once again slowed down, further emphasizing the exploration of each level.

The controls do take time to master. Those familiar with the series may get miffed at first, but will eventually find the changes a bit smarter and even inviting. After two decades of the same controls however, hardcore fans may be less receptive to change. For this reason, this step in the franchise may be a great introduction for younger games. The speed and difficulty of the few levels playable this far however will latch on to older gamers.

What will entice seasoned fans of the franchise further are the beautiful environments and alludes to former games. If you’ve played a game in the series over the last 22 years, you’ll find a nod to it here, from springboards, bumpers and enemies. Sega has done a solid job, even at this early stage of changing the sonic formula enough to make the game different and pertinent, but has kept enough of the old to make sure diehards get their full.

Control changes aside, Sonic Lost World is fast, fun and far from a futile effort. If anything it’s a fresher take on an iconic character that needed a few more reasons to bring back the fans that made him an icon.

And with plenty of time left in development, there’s no reason why Sonic Lost World can’t dash it’s way into your heart this holiday season.

Check out photos from the Wii U version below:

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About Patrick Hickey Jr. 12202 Articles
Patrick Hickey Jr. is the Founder, Editor-in-Chief, Master Jedi and Grand Pooh-bah of ReviewFix.com and is the author of the book, "The Minds Behind the Games: Interviews with Cult and Classic Video Game Developers," from leading academic and non-fiction publisher McFarland and Company. He is currently the Assistant Director of the Journalism Program at Kingsborough Community College and is a former News Editor at NBC Local Integrated Media and a National Video Games Writer at the late Examiner.com. He has also had articles and photos published in The New York Times, The New York Daily News, Complex and The Syracuse Post-Standard. Love him. Read him.

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