Sonic Mania is officially out for all consoles, and PC coming later this month. Sega and all the developers who helped build this game from the ground up did a fantastic job; the visuals are stunning and the music is on point, which matches sounds with their respected stages perfectly. This game is cheap at 20 US dollars, so if you are a fan of Sonic or new to the series, maybe this article could convince you to give this game a shot.

Plot

Dr. Eggman is at it again! After saving Angel Island, Tails and Sonic are seen relaxing when they pick up a strong energy reading below them. This energy appears to be very powerful so they both decide to investigate because this might end badly.

However, Dr. Eggman also finds out about the energy reading and the two forces race against time to find the source first. Eggman releases his new team of robots called Hard-boiled Heavies, which reach the signal first before Sonic and friends. They team up with their new ally Knuckles to find the source of this strange energy before Eggman.

Gameplay/graphics

Gameplay resembles the same concept of the Mega Drive and Sega Genesis style of games, it also takes similar looks from Chrisitan Whitehead's retro series. Based on the Retro Engine "Sonic Mania" looks beautiful, the pixels look defined, this game features 3D shaped structures that pop in color and show dominance to this 2D landscape. The development team made sure to add detail to every enemy and give them individuality, I found myself taking pictures of enemies in the bright lights of Studiopolis zone or being frozen in the cold jungles of Press Garden.

Sonic Mania still features the standard level mechanic: run through the stage finding power ups to aid you and finding secrets to go into different areas or stages.

You can also collect all seven chaos emeralds in these stages for a surprise to happen, star posts act as checkpoints, and each area has a different boss you can fight. The thing that impresses me with this game is that every area is different and not filled with gimmicks; I personally enjoyed each stage I got to explore in.

Bosses were also unique and rewarding to fight; and figuring out the different ways to defeat bosses in this game was an enjoyable experience as well. I would like to also note that this game runs at a smooth 1080P 60 FPS on all platforms PS4 pro can be upscaled to 4K and have redefined pixels and rendering.

Nintendo Switch versions and PS4 versions report minor bugs like slow down and home-screen freezing but Christian Whitehead on Twitter mentioned they were working on it.

Music

Tee Lopes did an amazing job on the music in this game, as stage sounds pop with amazing instrumentals. Sounds are loud but not too loud, and fit the atmosphere well for each stage. The remastered music for old levels has great detail and is really impressive. The whole Sonic Mania soundtrack sounds amazing, each track is composed well and gives each track a nice old Sonic feel to keep things the same for old fans but also spicing it up to keep things interesting.

My overall opinion

If you like Sonic you will definitely enjoy this game, even if this game isn't the best thing ever made.

What this game is, is a project Christian Whitehead and Sega put their heart and soul into. They decided to take the original Sonic formula remake it and turn it into something not really modernized but something that fans of the series today and yesterday can enjoy for years to come.

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