Sonic Mania

Sonic Mania

I love classic Sonic as much as the next person, and Sonic Mania feels like it’s stepped right out of 1994. But I have the same relationship with it that I have with New Super Mario Bros: part of the appeal of these franchises is how ground-breaking they were, so an imitation of their past triumphs, however accurate, will inevitably feel hollower than its inspirations. The “warts and all” style of recreation also carries over the slippery physics, inconsistent visual design, and frustrating bonus stages. The good parts of Sonic Mania are incredible, however. The new levels and remixed old ones have that crucial trait where even screwups merely drop you on a new path with no loss of momentum. The audio is a similarly superb mix of old and new, and the boss fights display an uncommon level of imagination. Even the competitive and cooperative two-player modes from the Genesis titles return, as sloppy and entertaining as ever.

6/10
6/10

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