DAR Games: The 5 Greatest Sonic The Hedgehog Games

By @TrueGodImmortal

Sonic The Hedgehog is a beloved character. Through his run as a top video game character, the Sonic brand has seen a number of ups and downs. Recently, a new game in the series was released, titled Sonic Mania. Sonic Mania has been receiving rave reviews and has been considered one of the best modern and recent editions in the Sonic franchise. With that in mind, I wanted to take a look at the ups of the franchise. There have been many classics in the franchise and narrowing them down was a bit tough, but here are the 5 greatest Sonic The Hedgehog games.

5. Sonic Adventure 2 (2001)

-I could place the first one on this list as well, as both games are great from top to bottom, but the 2nd edition of Sonic Adventure is slightly better than the first. The first edition was a classic, and somehow they managed to improve on it. Released at a time when the Dreamcast system wasn't at its most popular, Sonic Adventure 2 was inventive in various ways and really gave you variety in the gameplay. There were essentially good vs evil stories included here as Sonic, Knuckles, and Tails took on Shadow, Rouge, and Doctor Eggman. Sonic and company want to save the world, while Shadow and company seem bent on conquering it. Despite some spotty voice acting on the game and some less than enjoyable music, this game doesn't disappoint. The graphics, the visuals, and the gameplay were all top notch, and while the Dreamcast is no longer around, this game lives on forever.

4. Sonic The Hedgehog 3 (1994)

-There aren't many games from this era that carried the excitement and this might be the most interesting of them all. Many have said that Sonic 3 is the best of the series, and while that's debatable, the fact remains this game is something special. It carries a huge legacy, as it was originally intended to be a much longer game, but it would have to be split into two separate games (more on that a little later). It's widely recognized by critics as one of the most fun games to ever play, and unlike the first two in the series, it wasn't included with the Genesis console to boost up sales of the game. This game would introduce Knuckles, who is a prominent character in the history of the franchise. You could also play as Tails here, which was fun, but my favorite detail about this game is one that went uncredited: Michael Jackson did a majority of the soundtrack on this game before stepping away. There is no other tidbit about this game more important than that. Regardless, the fact is, Sonic 3 has a claim as one of the best, if not the best of the entire franchise. It's THAT good.

3. Sonic And Knuckles (1994)

-Literally the best one-two punch of the franchise came during the height of the popularity for Sonic. After the hugely successful third edition of the franchise, SEGA decides to hit gamers with a direct sequel to the third game. Initially intended to be a part of the original 3rd edition, this game was released as a standalone and could be connected to previous games with the lock-on technology. Still, though it was very similar to the 3rd edition of the game, it was slightly better, perhaps because there was longer development of the game comparably speaking. What makes this game so great is that it took the technology and gameplay of a previous classics game, improved it some, and cleaned up some of the areas were the 3rd might have possibly lacked. The best thing about this game is that picking Sonic or Knuckles allows for a slightly different experience with each character, showcasing different cutscenes depending on who you played as. While some may have criticism of this game, it remains a classic and one of the best in the history of the franchise.

2. Sonic Generations (2011)

-When Sonic came to Xbox 360 and PS3, I was pretty excited about it, but I didn't know what to expect initially. After a reboot in 2006 essentially to commemorate the 15th anniversary of the original game, the franchise suffered a bit through the Next-gen games like Sonic Unleashed, Sonic Colors, as well as Sonic and the Black Knight. Now, these games in particular weren't bad (Black Knight was), but they missed the mark for me in a number of areas. Sonic Generations however managed to right those wrongs and is the best game on the next-gen platforms of the 2000s for Sonic without question. Being able to control Sonic in either classic or modern mode was a nice touch, and the goal of trying to secure the seven Chaos Emeralds made for a fun gaming experience overall. You can relive Green Hill Zone, Chemical Plant, Sky Sanctuary, Crisis City, and more on this game, which only added to the allure of this game. Sonic Generations is a classic, and you need this game in your collection without a doubt.

1. Sonic The Hedgehog 2 (1992)

-There is one gold standard in the franchise and this is it. Period. The 2nd edition in the original series is honestly the most fun of  the franchise, and it executes gameplay perfectly. The premise is rather simple and similar to the first edition, as Sonic is once again doing battle with Dr. Robotnik, who has his sights on world domination by any means (well maybe not that extreme). As the game goes on, and the classic levels commence, the origin of the Death Egg is born, and we get to see Sonic and Tails together as they battle to destroy it. The levels are my favorite part of the game, as Emerald Hill, Chemical Plant, and others are beyond fun to play. This game holds a special place in my childhood, and it holds a special place in the franchise, as it still stands as the 2nd highest selling game in the franchise under the first (the first sold so well due to being included with the Genesis console). When we look back at the Sonic franchise, there is no doubt in my mind that Sonic 2 is the best of the best.



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