Sonic Origins review by

In 2021, Sonic celebrated its 30th anniversary and many fans were disappointed with the lack of events organized by SEGA. Even if the hedgehog’s aura isn’t what it was when he started, we’re still talking about the company’s spell! To appease the community, the publisher has responded with Sonic Origins, another set of Mega Drive episodes (a SEGA console from the early ’90s), and a rare fact that needs to be emphasized, an exclusive Mega CD adventure (a bonus player on Mega Drive). Enough to conquer it?

You don’t really see any contempt on your part, these words are only a mirror of Sonic fans’ feelings. The latter was expecting a celebration of its thirtieth anniversary and the few announcements about the famous hedgehog did not convince many people. Also, many hoped that Sonic Origins would be the definitive compilation, even though there are games that have been watched and reviewed.

cream creams?

As its name suggests, Sonic Origins looks at the beginnings of a hedgehog and collects all of his early adventures. So we find Sonic the Hedgehog, Sonic the Hedgehog 2, Sonic 3 & Knuckles (combining Sonic 3 and Sonic & Knuckles), and Sonic CD. Thus we benefit from the increased power of the mascot and simply excellent games. The first Sonic lays the foundations for licensing, with the Green Hill Zone, Dr. Robotnik or the animals to be rescued. This is followed by two episodes that improve the gameplay of the original game and explore new environments by incorporating new characters. As far as saying it right away, with Mario, we bring the best of ’90s platform games for those who love speed, scenery, and exploration. On the other hand, you will not find any episode released on mobile consoles and even less 3D adventures. Sonic’s origins are only concerned with the upbringing of the little hedgehog. A little light all that, when you know there was a series of sympathetic episodes posted at the same time.

Revisiting games for maximum fun?

Sonic Origins: A compilation worthy of the 30th anniversary of SEGA's Hedgehog?

The new “star” item allows you to unlock Museum Mode items.

Inevitably, with such an assembly, we are entitled to wonder if it holds up over time. After all, only 4 games and Sonics, except for Sonic CD and its evolution in spacetime, are not known for their longevity. Under these circumstances, what is left for this assembly? Well, it’s simple, each game is divided into two modes: Classic and Anniversary. The former copies the entire original game with a limited life and the screen is in 4/3 (square format) resolution. The second, on the contrary, gives infinite life, displays the Defenders in 16/9 (rectangular shape) and adds a “star” element that allows, once in the lists, to go to the museum to unlock a large number of items capable of making any nostalgia Fan crack. Illustrations, videos, music and development documentation, there’s so much to do! This section is really successful and pushes you to finish each game by collecting all the emeralds (to get the real ending and maximum stars).

In addition to all this, Sonic Origins offers an adventure mode that allows you to relive all four games in one trip! For each of the titles in the collection, there is also a mission mode (with objectives to be achieved such as eliminating a certain number of enemies, etc.) Boss Rush Which consists of defeating each boss in record time. Everything is quite traditional, but it works well for those who want to extend the fun. Compared to its younger companions, Sonic 3 & Knuckles also has a section blue spheres Which, in general, takes the bonus levels of the eponymous game by adding two new colors (the green balls as well as the purple balls that act as a teleporter). With the Sonic Mania team, SEGA has endeavored to improve the features of each game as much as possible and we enjoy experimenting with every option found in the collection, such as changing characters (playing with Tails or Knuckles instead of voice). Each title has been redesigned using Sonic Mania tools and we can’t help but salute the fluidity of the whole and the quality of the graphics.

A real novelty?

If the additions are interesting, it is still necessary to remember that the games presented already benefit from the improvements of the mobile versions released in 2013. There is no original in this collection! Thus players can discover items that were not present in the original versions. For example, in Sonic the Hedgehog 2, it is possible to access a file hidden palace areaa level that was once abandoned. There is also a whole bunch of small tweaks, like adding a file spin dash (When Sonic wrinkled into place and suddenly accelerates) to the first Sonic of the name. The effort is commendable and the assembly is fairly complete from this point of view. On the other hand, there are strange omissions. Except for Sonic 3 & Knuckles, which are basically memorized, it’s impossible to memorize at all times! The same note for the rewind function (when you lose, you can go back a few seconds to start over) and it is absent! Finally, don’t expect to enjoy the various graphic filters or viewing options, there are none! Consolation Prize Only: Having different resolution frames in 4/3. yes.

As for the music of Sonic 3 & Knuckles, which was originally born out of a collaboration with Michael Jackson, it’s gone – for some -! Level Avatars carnival nightAnd the Ice cap And the LaunchBase The tracks have been replaced by one of SEGA’s historic musicians: Jun Senoue. If this music is not unheard of, it is far from it, but it does not have the charm of yesterday’s melodies. Adding audio and visual bugs, all of these make us say Sonic Origins is probably worth a few more weeks of development.

elegant sauce

Sonic Origins: A compilation worthy of the 30th anniversary of SEGA's Hedgehog?

This note is very unfortunate because the Sonic Mania team has combined new animations and a really neat interface. Thus players can unlock a map and navigate around the different islands to enjoy each game, mission or museum. The developers have added a small animated island in the background that you can “visit” by zooming in on the different characters that revolve around their actions. Of course, to some people this will seem entirely anecdotal, but it shows the care that goes into assembly when it comes to packaging. Who is there to being necessary? Mostly not…

Sonic Origins: A compilation worthy of the 30th anniversary of SEGA's Hedgehog? Sonic Origins: A compilation worthy of the 30th anniversary of SEGA's Hedgehog?

Like it or not, and while the games on offer are excellent, SEGA has already been offering this kind of compilation for twenty-five years! For example, in Sonic Jam on Saturn (the SEGA console was released in 1994), players can enjoy most of the games shown here (in their original format) and even a completely free 3D section where Sonic can walk around and enter buildings to watch videos or illustrations Or listen to music or keep track of licensing history. Of course, Sonic Origins goes further in terms of content, but the gap isn’t that huge by comparison. In the question, to have a greater impact, the developers could have imagined an improved version of this 3D section of Sonic Jam. Therefore, we will dedicate Sonic Origins primarily to beginners who want to discover the beginnings of the franchise. Others will return to the original consoles and games. Note that to get all the content you have to get the Deluxe version, which is a bit more expensive, which adds mirror mode (levels are done right to left and not left to right), some animations and music.


strength point

  • Game interface and skin
  • Excellent games in enhanced versions
  • animation
  • Various game modes
  • Well stocked museum

Weak points

  • Music missing from Sonic 3
  • Very few games
  • Show and sound of bugs
  • 16:9 is absolutely not suitable for 2 player mode
  • Slightly salty addition (more on that in the deluxe version)

Although it’s a nice homage to the early adventures of the hedgehog, Sonic Origins deserves a better ending. In general, this assembly is correct, but the presented options are not enough to make up for some of the shortcomings. Despite the really successful clothing through its animation and colorful interface, SEGA constantly oscillates between good and bad. We’re having a great time, but on Sonic’s 30th anniversary, we were right to expect more games and surprises. Especially at a price of forty euros.


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