Sonic Mania is nearly upon us and the Sonic faithful are definitely excited. Sonic Mania is a return to form for the ol’ Blue Blur, but those of you who haven’t been following the game so closely may not know why it’s worth getting excited about it. After all, Sonic games in recent years have been a bit hit or a miss, so it might be hard to know why this one should stick out. With that in mind, here are five reasons to look forward to Sonic Mania.
1. Sonic games like this don’t come around very often
Ever since the arrival of the Sega Dreamcast, many Sonic games have been fully 3D affairs. Sega was content to let 2D Sonic live on through handheld releases for many years, up until the launch of Sonic Generations back in 2011. Though Sonic Generations pleased a lot of fans with its 2D stages, Sega merely considered it to be a one-off type game that was released in celebration of the series’ 20th anniversary. As a result, 2D gameplay hasn’t appeared in many mainline Sonic games since then, so to be receiving Sonic Mania in all of its 2D glory is a rare treat.
2. Sonic Mania has an excellent team behind it
Believe it or not, Sonic Team actually isn’t the driving force behind Sonic Mania. Development has been split between Christian Whitehead, Simon Thomley from Headcannon, and PagodaWest Games. Whitehead and Thomley have previously worked on the excellent mobile ports of Sonic the Hedgehog, Sonic 2, and Sonic CD, while the trio from PagodaWest have worked on Sonic fan projects in the past. This is definitely a game for Sonic fans by Sonic fans.
3. Sonic Mania offers a good mix of old and new
Though Sonic Mania ultimately harkens back to the days of Sonic’s 2D platformers, there does seem to be a lot that’s new in this title. New stages crafted from the ground up will join remakes of classic Sonic stages like Green Hill Zone and Chemical Plant Zone. There’s even a mix of familiarity and new content when we look at special stages, as they offer both a new UFO chase mode and blue orb special stages inspired by Sonic the Hedgehog 3 and Sonic and Knuckles.
4. Sonic Mania was well received at E3 2017
Sonic Mania made at a stop at E3 2017 earlier this year, and it definitely impressed attendees. A number of gaming publications named it one of the best games of E3 2017, which is an honor the Sonic series doesn’t often get. When Sonic Mania can impress a games industry that has been burned one too many times by medicore or just outright bad Sonic games, you know there’s something special about it.
5. Early Sonic Mania reviews are very positive
Though the game doesn’t release until tomorrow (for everyone but PC players, that is), some reviews have started going live today. The results are very encouraging for anyone who was getting excited about Sonic Mania in the lead up to its release. At the time of this writing, Sonic Mania currently holds an 86 out of 100 rating on Metacritic, which is based on 35 reviews. That score will likely fluctuate a bit as more reviews are published, but it’s clear that reviews are going to be mostly positive.
It certainly seems like Sonic Mania is going to be the game that Sonic fans have been waiting years to play. Are you going to pick up Sonic Mania? Head down to the comments section and tell us what you think about the game!