Ah, those were the days. When Sonic games had a last story that would tie up all loose ends and connect everyone’s story together. Back when I played SA2B, I thought beating both Hero and Dark Side stories was the end of the game. To my amazement and eventual satisfaction, the game continued onward!

After a while, this practice… got old. By the time we get to 06, we wouldn’t want it anymore as it turned into an excuse to make you play every character’s story before being able to finish the game. Combine that with needing all chaos emeralds, and we come to the present day where Taxman can say “extra characters are simply padding“.

And considering how long it actually takes to finish Stories in 06, this “padding” became unbearable. Let’s get on wit it. 

It starts off with Sonic and Elise walking in a forest when a wall of fire appears. Distracted, Mephilis rises up from the ground and kills Sonic the Hedgehog! Despite how hated this game is, that’s pretty damn hardcore. Or it would be if this was the real Sonic. You know, Mephilis should be Game Scoop’s mascot.

Elise then cries, unleashing Iblis. Mephilis takes this opportunity and uses the 7 chaos emeralds to fuse with Iblis and become Solaris. 

Wait.. if… if that was his plan the whole time… why did he bother leaving the future!? Think about it. At the beginning of Silver’s story, Mephilis tells Silver that the key to destroying Iblis was to kill Sonic, which would’ve caused Elise to cry and unleash Iblis anyway. But… he was already in a time period where Iblis was awakened! He could’ve just had Silver and Blaze gather Chaos Emeralds in the current time period and then have the 2 beat Iblis to a fiery pulp, and then used the Emeralds to fuse there! Remember, when Silver beats Iblis phase 3, he turns into fire. Mephilis had no reason (other than maybe retreating from Shadow) to go back to the past. Speaking of which, Shadow’s group is surrounded by ooze. Then… shit happens.

All of time becomes distorted and… looks like the distortion world from Pkmn Platinum? Even Silver was here. Robotnik explains that because of Mephilis’s manipulations, killing Sonic yadda yadda. This has always bothered me since the game first came out. Robotnik seemed pretty upset that Mephilis made Elise cry, even though…

  1. At the beginning of the game, his stated objective was to take the flames of disaster from Elise, and eventually he’d have to make her cry himself, possibly through torture. 
  2. Didn’t he always hate Sonic? You’d think he would be a tiny bit overjoyed seeing his arch nemesis wasted thanx to the Harley Quinn principle of “just shooting him“. Even if the world has gone to hell.

 Silver realizes he was duped and Amy is obviously devastated. This scene… got heavy, I admit. Then ofcourse, Animu Dues Ex occurs and Elise somehow hears Sonic In the wind (wtf!?) which gives Silver the idea to use Chaos Emeralds to bring him back. Thanx alot Sega, now i’ll never hear an end to all the Dragon Ball comparisons. 

And so now the gang has to find the  7 Emeralds scattered throughout subspace, one character per emerald. Now we know the real reason Blaze was killed off. End of the World is a fantastic example of artificial difficulty. You’re basically going through 7 of the original 9 zones (No Radical Train or Aquatic Base). 7 acts total, you lose all lives here, you start all over, being punished by the endless cutscenes. So…. why is this artificial difficulty? Because overtime, these giant tears in space open up and start sucking you in. If you so much as brush past them shits, you die. And each act gets really…. really crowded. To make things easier, you have these altars that stabilizes space and allows you supposedly safe passage until them tears start up again. Doesn’t help that these altars are few and far between. Your main concern should be getting as many 1ups as possible to last longer as you’ll be dying a lot if the game demands it.

Act 1 is Crisis City with Tails. Pretty simple, actually

Act 2 is Flame Core with Omega. You have to be really good with his hovering skills or you’ll eat lava and bottomless pits. 

Act 3 is Tropical Jungle with Knuckles. You’ll come to hate Knux’s rapid descent here as many platforms start seeming too high to reach. Also because its a giant clusterfuck of a zone, you’ll get lost easily. It took me 5 retries just to find the emerald.

Act 4 is Dusty Desert with Silver. Here’s where it gets real bullshit. There’s so many parts where they make you run between 2 of these tear shits. I’m tellin y’all, my rage from this one Act alone. I lost count of how many times I died from this shit. This is also where I learned that all sand kills you. I make it near the end and jumped right into that sand pile on that tower… I fucking screamed at this shit! It’s beyond tedious, and these damned tears pull you in… just fuck Act 4 altogether. When I finally beat that shit, I pissed myself.

Act 5 is Wave Ocean with Rouge. Just like Act 3, it’s very easy to getlist and not know the damned Emerald is. But it’s not hard.

Act 6 is Acropolis with Amy. Easy and straight-forward!

And Act 7 is Kingdom Valley with Shadow. This isn’t bullshit like Act 4, but it’s just as tedious. Those damned tears pop up in the worst places, mainly in areas that you have to land in from the air. I remember one time I landed away from a tear only to get shot by a missile off-screen, and was eventually pulled into the tear. Act 7 had all the ingredients of artificial difficulty, a fact that is thinly disguised by the amount of altars you get here.

End of the World is so disgustingly trial & error, Naughty Dog had 5 boners all at once.

After that BS, we get the scene that made everyone shit themselves with recoiling terror, and gave millions epileptic seizures, numbers that Porygon would be proud of. The day… that Elise kissed Sonic the Hedgehog. Yes boys and girls, even though before this catastrophic event, we accepted that Batman kissed Cheetah in the Justice League cartoon (even in the previews!), the marriage of Roger and Jessica Rabbit, or even the possibility of one of your favorite Ninja Turtles getting busy with April O’neal… until the movies shattered those dreams…. by having April played by Megan Fox. Oh yeah, Casey Jones, him too.

Sidetracking aside, that kiss did seem unnecessary. The Chaos Emeralds and this… ritual… should’ve been all that was needed to bring Sonic back to life. The kiss just came out of nowhere. Re-watching all those Elise scenes I skipped over, there was literally nothing implying they even had that kind of relationship going on… unless you count that bullshit with Amy. For the most, the relationship was more along the lines of “kid with low self-esteem meets magical awesome hero who inspires him/her to greatness”. Except Elise doesn’t seem… to have low self-esteem either….aw fuck it.

So they use the Dragon Balls to bring Sonic back to life, and I suppose that kiss  gave him a kickass coat of gold because the power of boners is stronger. Then Elise almost passes out… uhhhh…. Sonic shares his power amongst Shadow and Silver… and no one else. It really is like DBZ, if you’re not a hedgehog, you don’t matter! Just like those Saiyan whores. Give me Hyper Knuckles, you fucks!

Oh well, final fight. I was confused as to what I was supposed to do. I had to figure out what hog could damage Solaris at the time. Quite frankly, it goes in this order. Silver, Shadow, then Sonic….. I think. I don’t really know. Hell I managed to damage the old bird with Sonic before using Silver. And ohhh boy, dat micromanagement. Before attacking at all, you want a full bar of cyan stuff if you want any chance of hurting him. Other than that… it’s shameful that the final boss is easier than the final level. Time consuming, maybe (because kicking his ass seems to be RNG half the time)) but insanly easy. Every Sonic game (sans SCD) has had a tough end boss, either by legitimate challenge (S3K) or total bullshit (S1&2, most 3D Sonic games). Eitherway, this fight was simply pathetic. We’ve fought an alien that was tougher than this.

After the bout, there’s a bright flash of light that covers everything and makes everyone but Sonic and Elise disappear from thin air. And those 2 are whisked back to before the deadly experiment.. to when Solaris was a wittle baby candle flame! Dawwwww!

The king explains to Kid Elise that this candle would let them travel through time (how the fuck would that even work!?) No no no, this needs further investigation. Fans ask about the fucking moon from Sonic Adventure fucking #2, but no one pondered how the fuck a piece of mutant fire could control time!?

The goal was to bring back the King’s wife… I guess. After that touching scene, Elise tells Sonic that blowing out the candle would save everyone, but laments that she wouldn’t get to see Sonic again. Of course, he gives her that gay ass line of “just smile“… to which she does and promptly blows out the flame (oh shit! Baby murder!!)

Then they’re back at the festival where Sonic just races by, scaring the shit out of people only to remind Elise that he exists. Isn’t dat tweet?

I suppose it’s not a bad ending, but eh, they couldn’t pay me to care about the story.

Final Thoughts

*sigh* I can still recall the hype when this game was announced. People were legitimately excited one last time for a Sonic game. I can recall the rage, the massive dissappointment, the ass ton of bad reviews, and the false hope that Secret Rings could turn things around. Even 06 didn’t kill people’s desire to continue playing Sonic games. It wasn’t until the Werehog that people gave up on the series. That was the tipping point. Shth and 06 were the cracks. These days, i’m shocked to find people coming out saying they liked Unleashed. It’s… admittedly refreshing to see some people liking Shth despite no one talking about it.

It was weird to me. You never hear about Bomberman Act Zero. DmC. Sunshine. Other M. Starfox Command. But no matter what, we’re always going back to this game, specifically. Fans have actually gone to using this game as a means to silence others for daring to want other characters or even a deeper plot. Like some videogame version of Auschwitz that we must never forget. I’m like… why this game, though? What makes it so special? 

I mean yeah, gaming icon, massive hype before release, nothing like the other games I’ve mentioned, some of which actually bounced back from these low points. But even in the face of bigger insults like Boom and Lost Mind, this game sticks out like a sore thumb amongst the entire gaming community.

Having played through the whole game, I can safely say it has nothing to do with it being an unfinished product. Hell, The Witcher 3 has even worse bugs (hard crashes) and people herald it as goty. People can enjoy buggy games. Of course… that’s where the problems come in. There’s not a single element of this whole game that is even remotely enjoyable. Most of the time, 06 just felt like work. You have to do specific things in each zone to progress (like the stupid ball puzzles or destroying searchlights or even trapping a whale behind steel gates). Sure, you had BS in SA1&2 like finding relic keys and placing them on altars from Pyramid Cave or needing to farm rings in Casinopolis, or all the general fetch quests that were mandatory. Yet somehow, those games remain loved even in the wake of modern day critics. 

So then you get to the content issue (which is finished) and you get the actual problem. The game’s content just doesn’t offer any incentive to play through the game. Silver stood no chance of gaining fans thanx to a lacking design and the existence of Shth, the story is flat out boring and uninteresting, there’s no real lore, just a bunch of hokey magic science that does w/e the plot demands… it really felt like a game geared towards anime fans, and anime was already in decline due to epically bad writing and the increasing demand to appeal to otakus. It just doesn’t fit Sonic. The music is ok for about 4 zones, but the existence of mp3’s makes the incentive of the soundtrack nonexistent. 06 simply didn’t have anything going for it to warrant the massive hype. 

And that’s probably the real reason. Any major hype for any movie/game that simply doesn’t stack up to it is always met with understandably irrational rage. Understandable as you were promised something awesome and got burned, and irrational as critical reception is disproportionately negative and tends to accentuate areas that aren’t big issues overall (Martha). None of this excuses the product at hand, but there’s nothing here that we haven’t been exposed to in other games of the last generation. The controversy of this game is strange. No one talks about Superman 64 decades after it’s release.

06 is a bad game. Shit, its tedious and frustrating! But what In this game warrants constant mention? The over -arching desire for Sega to never do this again? Cause mission accomplished 7 years ago! Now all Sonic games try to be anti06 by focusing strictly on being unserious, kiddy, no extra characters and gameplay focused. And by gameplay, I mean loads more puzzles. What better way to convince dumbasses you have good gameplay than by shoving brain teasers into it with minimal action?

But w/e. The technical problems are the least of this game’s problems. But it and Black Knight are the last games that have other playable characters at least until Mania comes out (no, Boom is not a Sonic game) so it’s something I had to put up with. I just hope the nonsense fallacy of “multiple characters doom the franchise” ends.