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Which game console generation was Sonic's best?


batson

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Yes yes, we all know which one is going to get the most votes, but still...

Based on the quality of his games, which console generation do you feel have been Sonic's best? Was it the fourth generation (the Super Nintedo, Mega Drive era), the fifth generation (the Nintendo 64, Playstation, Saturn era), the sixth generation (the GameCube, Playstation 2, X-Box, Dreamcast era), or the seventh generation (the Wii, Playstation 3, X-Box 360 era)?

Oh and try to not take re-releases of games from older generations into account when judgeing later generations (otherwise, one could use for instance the Mega Drive games as examples of good seventh generation Sonic games, since they are downloadable on the Wii) mmkay?

Anyway, my favorite generation when it comes to Sonic games is (surprise, surprise) the fourth! I just think that the quality of the gameplay of the four main Sonic games on the Mega Drive have yet to be beaten by any other Sonic game. Heck, it has yet to be beaten by any platform game!

Edited by batson
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I hate to say this, because I know everyone else will, but yeah, 4th gen. It's got the best awesome-to-shit ratio, weighted by importance. Runner-up would probably be either sixth (for the Adventures) or seventh (for the Rushes and Unleashed), but even then...

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I thought this was going to be a clear cut answer, but while typing it out, I realized I was wrong. It turns out I think the sixth generation is Sonic's best.

Hear me out: the sixth generation has Sonic Adventure and Sonic Adventure 2, both games that I absolutely love. It also has the enjoyable Shadow the Hedgehog and Sonic Riders. Only bad game of the generation was Sonic Heroes.

Meanwhile, the fourth generation has Sonic 1 and Sonic 3&K, two of the best 2D platform games ever made. But it also has that slight disappointment, Sonic 2*, and the terrible Sonic 3D Blast and Sonic Spinball (of course, this is all just my opinion).

So that's how things worked out in the end. I was surprised too.

*Sonic 2 is just Sonic 1 with an extra burst of speed and less inventive level design. Seriously, almost every stage feels the same. And don't even get me started on Metropolis Zone act 3, the epitome of repetitiveness. Game is still mostly entertaining though, and the final level does much to redeem the boring half of the game.

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So this isn't a question I really think about. The answer for me is the fourth generation, when you could buy Sonic Spaghetti-Os. He was popular back then because his games were quality, and he was doing new things with the platformer genre. I don't think any of his games since have had that "wow" factor for me, except maybe Unleashed.

Unleashed impressed me in the visual department, but the only other game I like from the current gen is Secret Rings which was kind of lacking itself. I feel quality is coming back now, but the DC gen has the Adventures. I guess my second fave is the sixth generation, even if that includes Heroes and Shadow. The sixth generation is kind of funny for Sonic, because Sega dropped out of the race halfway through while the PS2 is still selling strong today. Fifth gen is obviously last for me. 3D (isometric bumblefuckery) Blast and Sonic R weren't proper Sonic games. If only they followed through with Xtreme, we could've had our own age of Sanshiro here in the West.

Edited by Stretchy Werewolf
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I'm going to cheat and say fifth gen, as we had Sonic Jam (all of the great fourth gen games) as well as the unique Sonic the Fighters and Sonic R. Coming in next is fourth gen for all the other Sonic games (Spinball, Game Gear games) and then sixth gen in third (Adventure 1 and 2 are classics).

Edited by Doctor Eggman
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It also has the enjoyable Shadow the Hedgehog and Sonic Riders.

You're joking, right?

for me, def the fourth gen. Not a bad game in sight, Sonic is a pop culture icon and a competitor to Mairo, rather then a gawky has been on the side lines. Loved it.

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I gotta agree with Eggman and say Gen 5. Sonic Jam gave you everything Gen 4 had + the awesometastic Sonic World, 3D Blast Saturn had an awesome SS, and Sonic R is the most underrated Sonic game ever (being a childhood memory and an all-around really well-done game for it's time). Plus, Sonic CD for the PC.

Second place is Gen 6, mostly for the factor that SA1 was pure bliss on a disc~ <3

And I wish I could put down Gen 7 (because of Unleashed), but Nextgen and the Storybook games just had to ruin it..

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Considering the series' decline in quality with each generation the most obvious answer to expect is the fourth console generation. Since everyone else will elaborate why far better than I can I'm going to ignore it and choose the next best generation, the sixth.

This generation served as a glorious(if short lived) revival for Sonic after being almost non-existant in the fifth generation. SA1 astonshed gamers with amazing graphics, giant environments, and a large branching plot never before seen in the series. While this generation also the end of sega as a console maker it also saw the return of classic 2D gameplay in the Sonic Advance series as well as Sonic's first appearance on a Nintendo console with Sonic Adventure 2 Battle. While the games did see a decline in quality with the hit-or-miss Riders and Battle and ending with the universally panned Shadow the hedgehog it still had some of the most pivotal games in series and most growth of Sonic as a character.

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*Sonic 2 is just Sonic 1 with an extra burst of speed and less inventive level design. Seriously, almost every stage feels the same. And don't even get me started on Metropolis Zone act 3, the epitome of repetitiveness. Game is still mostly entertaining though, and the final level does much to redeem the boring half of the game.

I kinda agree with this statement it wasn't bad it was just repetitive.

Well in my oppinion the best generation for Sonic was the Genesis Era. While I usualy base my game oppinion on my own experience with the games I actualy based this oppinion on fame. In this era Sonic was making millions, was widley resieved as a more cool and in-your-face character than mario, and was more recognizable to kids than Mickey Mouse. Now I'll admit that this generation had some pretty bad Sonic games just like any other. It reely stands out to me as Sonics true moment in the spotlight.

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I have a feeling this generation will be looked upon favorably by many Sonic fans down the line. The reason being is that it may be the start of Sonic's return to glory in the eyes of many. Unleashed was a vast improvement over the recent 3D games, and Needlemouse will supposedly return to Genesis-style 2D. Not to mention Sonic's apprearance in Smash Bros. Brawl, as well as Mario and Sonic at the Olympic games, which outsold Mario Galaxy as the review for the new game pointed out.

Edited by Icecoldfrieza
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It's all too obvious that that damn fourth generation was where Sonic was at his best. It was during that time that Mario was seriously dethroned in being the greatest game series at the time, and Sonic ran circles around him.

As Sonic hit the Dreamcast, I would almost say it would extend there, but who am I kidding.

Generations after that is where things get really rocky, of course.

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Hands down, the fourth. It contained the classics which we all know and love. I do agree that Sonic 2 IS overrated. Not that it's bad or boring, it's fun and spindash rocks, but it's not as great as it's made out to be. Personally I'll take the blue spheres over the half pipe any day.

Sonic 3 and Knuckles is my favorite of all the classics. It's just amazing. I would then say Sonic CD. I believe it lives up to the hype (even if a bit... "weird") and should be played by everyone. However that god-awful American soundtrack and the even worse special stages (UFOs = HORRIBLE) make it just a tad less fun.

I think that Tails Adventures should be mentioned too since it's from this era. I managed to play this on Gems Collection and if I had been into Sonic during that time, I would have loved to buy this one. It's most likely the most underrated Sonic game ever. If you've never tried it, I suggest you do.

~~

Next up, sixth generation.

Sonic Adventure 2 was IT for me. That game got me into Sonic. I never knew of Sonic anything past S&K and then, SA2. Of course Sonic Adventure is quite amazing and has the best storyline in the series.

I believe all of the other games (Shadow, Heroes, Riders, and Zero Gravity) are pretty lame. Neither as bad as Sonic 06, but bad enough. But I bought Shadow and Heroes anyway :D Also I LOOOOOVE that announcer in Riders, "SAWNIK IS LOOOOOOOOOOOSING MOMENTUM!!!!" and "Ungravitify" is a beast of a song, seriously. A BEAST.

~~

The seventh. Yup the seventh. Two words

SONIC UNLEASHED.

When Heroes came out I was like, "Well this was lame, but Shadow will be fun."

When Shadow came out I said, "Wow.... this is the worst Sonic game ever. Can't be much more horrible than this..."

I had heard the horror stories of 06 and never got to play the Storybook games, I didn't even want to play Rush due to the constant lackluster games (Rush rules. I was so surprised). When I heard about the Werehog, I said, "No way. This is gonna suck so hard. Worse than 06!" I saw the reviews, they were all bad. But I decided to play it anyway.

It was the best Sonic game I played in years. I loved the levels, the speed, the graphics, Griffith's Sonic voice (he's gotten SO much better these days, I think he and Drummond sound a lot alike), even Werehoging! The music was amazing. Whereas 06 has this epic, serious music that just doesn't fit, Unleashed has catchy, themed music that sticks with you. I can hum Rooftop Run, I can't hum Aquatic Base with though I prefer the second. I enjoyed the comedy, Chip, and I even liked the people.

Yes the people. Walking in towns felt like Adventure Stages! And buying chili dogs was always fun to me.

I will not say it's the next SA2 or its prequel, but it's pretty damn good. A step in the right direction.

I did play 06 after Unleashed.... best not to be talked about.

~~

The fifth

Oh goodness. Sonic 3D Blast, Sonic R, and Fighters. I've never played Jam, so I can't mention it. However the three games mentioned are all terrible. The only one that has some redeeming quality is Sonic R. It has some of the cheesiest, yet stupidly catchy music in the series (I know you sing "Super Sonic Racing" and "Can You Feel The Sunshine" in the shower. ADMIT IT! XD) But all three were bad games, simply said.

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Based solely on the total quality, the 4th generation.

I've always felt like the 6th generation is lumping too many consoles into one category. The Dreamcast never competed against the Gamecube or Xbox, and I feel like you can't put them in the same generation because of that. To me, the sixth generation starts at the launch of the Dreamcast and ends with the launch of the Game Cube. This time span had only four new Sonic games released, believe it or not, and they were Sonic Adventure, Adventure 2, Sonic Advance, and Sonic Pocket Adventure. That's a pretty good average.

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It's interesting that the most genreally accepted "eras" of the Sonic series is actually pretty distinct from the console generation/eras. Like, some eras in Sonic's history starts in the middle of one console generation, and ends in the middle of the next.

I think that most fans would more or less agree that the different eras in Sonic's history are:

The Classic era (from Sonic 1 to S&K)

The dark middle ages (the period between S&K and Sonic Adventure)

The renaissance (from Sonic Adventure to Sonic Adventure 2)

The crap era (from Sonic Heroes to Sonic 06)

The present era (From Sonic Unleashed and beyond)

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I wouldn't shoot down Saturn entirely, we got Sonic Jam, the best compilation game out there, gave us the classics, a beautiful (at the time) 3d world to run around in, art, music, videos, it was great!

I found Sonic 3D Flickies Island to be enjoyable on the MegaDrive, so eventually playing it on the Saturn was an even bigger treat, the music even got some kind of award if I remembered correctly.

Sonic R.. yes, I did find that fun despite how short it was, and hey, it gave us one of the most beloved characters to date, the Tails Doll :P

So, it was probably on par with MegaDrive, unfortunately better that the Dreamcast (Sonic Adventure was the only Sonic game worth playing on it), it beat out the GameCube (although Sonic Gems collection was excellent) and the PSWii60 speaks for itself.

But lets not forget the awesome Game Gear games :D There were a LOT of them

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The reason I wouldn't count Sonic Jam is because it's a compilation game, even if it has some new features to it.

The Dreamcast is kind of hard to place in a generation. Both it and the Saturn released early for their generations, like Sega was trying to stay ahead of their competition. It didn't work for them either time, because competitors always came back with stronger machines. They might have been better off riding out the success of old hardware like Nintendo did with the SNES and N64. I dunno. The Dreamcast is more like a fifth and a half generation console.

Edited by Stretchy Werewolf
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I'm split between the Genesis/Mega Drive era and the Dreamcast era, the Genesis era because that was the time I first played Sonic and so look back on it very fondly even if the games don't have the same amount of appeal as they used to.

And the Dreamcast era for getting me back into the franchise.

In all honesty I don't think its fair to really compare each era since the games have evolved and developed to match the tastes of their audience (the kids), and since I've moved beyond being a kid I'm not there key target anymore. I'd say people will chose the era that when they were the right age to be interested in it. So the older fans will pick the Genesis/Mega Drive era, the middle aged fans will pick the dreamcast, the younger fans will pick now (lord knows why?) and a few awkward people will chose the Saturn era just to be different.

So with me falling distinctly into the 'older fan' category I'm going to have to go for the Genesis/Mega Drive era.

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Both it and the Saturn released early for their generations, like Sega was trying to stay ahead of their competition.

The Saturn came out 1 week before the PSX did. Not really that early when the generation started with the 3D0 the year prior anyways.

It didn't work for them either time, because competitors always came back with stronger machines.

Dreamcast was more-or-less just as powerful as the PS2, and if you could find someone at the time who could figure out how to code 3D games for the damn thing, the Saturn was more powerful than the Playstation was. The problem was that games had to essentially be restarted from scratch for Saturn ports if you wanted the games to be any decent.

They might have been better off riding out the success of old hardware like Nintendo did with the SNES and N64. I dunno.

Most likely. I still can't understand why the idiots thought it would be a good idea to intentionally kill everything and move on to the next generation two different times.

Edited by Tornado
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Dreamcast was more-or-less just as powerful as the PS2, and if you could find someone at the time who could figure out how to code 3D games for the damn thing, the Saturn was more powerful than the Playstation was. The problem was that games had to essentially be restarted from scratch for Saturn ports if you wanted the games to be any decent.

I wouldn't have guessed that at all. I can't think of what the best looking game on the Saturn was, I remember games looking incredibly choppy, even stuff like Nights. On the other hand, early Playstation stuff like Twisted Metal was pretty slick looking for its time. I'm thinking maybe Sonic R was the best looking 3D game on the Saturn, unless it was something that's slipping under my radar. I've seen Deep Fear in motion and that wasn't bad either. It's just surprising that Sega does all this arcade business and couldn't get it together for their home consoles.

Edited by Stretchy Werewolf
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I'm thinking maybe Sonic R was the best looking 3D game on the Saturn, unless it was something that's slipping under my radar.

Take a look at the Shenmue development videos. If you had the money and the time and the talent, you could get stupid amounts of stuff out of the Saturn. The problem is, to do it, you needed at least 2/3 of those things to do so because of how stupidly hard Sega made the thing to program for. In general, if you wanted to get a decent port of an arcade game or PS1 game, you almost needed to rewrite the graphics engine from scratch. Most developers didn't bother, which is why so many of the (3D) games look like ass on the system in comparison.

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4th Gen was the best I'd say. He was than the most popular and was everywhere. 6th gen next. Up to SA2 the stories were nicely put together, but than came Heroes :-/. I also miss the Chaos emeralds being special... This Generation hasn't had an awesome Sonic game yet. Unleashed was great and all, but not awesome XD.

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