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So I played through Sonic CD, for the third time... Not really a review, but my opinions of it. I'm curious about you

#1 User is offline Narel 

Posted 12 March 2019 - 06:03 PM

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So I got myself the mobile version of Sonic CD asking myself why I don't play this game as much the other classic ones. It's not a bad game by any means, but something just doesn't catch me.

The first time I played it was back in 2010 more or less. It was the Sega CD version. I played through it, got the bad ending. Second time was in the beginning of last year (2018), same Sega CD version. This time I got the good ending through the Time Stones. Third time was today (March 12, 2019). I did a casual run of the game, so I got the bad ending again.

That's not to say I've only played the game three times. I have booted up the game several times, played through the first two or three zones and then stopped. The main reason I played through it again though, was to give myself a concrete answer. However, I did not come up with one, at lest not a solid one since I have mixed feeling for this game.

I don't hate this game at all, but I don't love it as much as Sonic 1 to 3 & Knuckles. I love the music, the Special Stages are awesome, the art style is amazing and colorful (with the exception of the bad futures which are dark, but still really good and pleasing to the eye), and the game casually isn't hard. So what keeps me from playing through the game entirely as much as I do the others? Well, it's the stages.

The stages (with the exception of Palmtree Panic, Tidal Tempest, Stardust Speedway, and a few sprinkled acts of others) feel like mazes. They are not hard, but they are slow. A lot of the time that I would speed up, I would immediately hit a wall and lose all that speed. The times where I did see it and avoided it, there was always another obstacle just waiting to stop me.

Also, what's up with those rings inside walls? Are they only accessible in different time periods of the act or what?

Anyway, back to the stages. I like Palmtree Panic, its easy. Tidal Tempest has little to no obstacles to stop you, and while you are slow underwater, these parts are not "mazy" or overly “platformy” like Labyrinth Zone in Sonic 1. If all the previous zones were speedy, this would be a nice change of pace. That said, since I feel the stages are slow, this one is, well, also slow, but enjoyably slow, not annoyingly slow like some of the others. Stardust Speedway, is sort of like a maze (maybe it totally is), but it is very speedy, it lives up to its name.

However, even though I don't like a lot of the stages, as a whole, I like this game. Especially the newer ports of the games that have the Genesis Spin Dash.

So, I'm curious as to what you guys feel about Sonic CD. Do some of you feel like I do about it, or do you disagree with what I stated entirely?

Any suggestions for rom hacks of this game are welcomed.

#2 User is offline Palas 

Posted 12 March 2019 - 11:21 PM

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It's my absolute favorite Sonic game for the very same reasons you raised.

I love the zones. I love that they feel like playgrounds you have to truly master in order to get really fast and access the other time periods. I love that youget to choose how you want to beat the game. I love using speed as a tool to look for things, and then just generally pay around bouncing off badniks and monitors. I think it's the "purest" Sonic could ever get.

There are a lot of details I can get into, but these are my general thoughts.

#3 User is offline ParleyMint 

Posted 13 March 2019 - 12:34 AM

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The soundtrack alone makes the game top tier in my book.

#4 User is offline Yoritoshi 

Posted 13 March 2019 - 09:05 AM

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There is an unmatched sense of wonder to Sonic CD. Like how you can find item boxes in the darndest places, how the future timezones are just for bells and whistles and how there are several gimmicks and easter eggs that show up just once in some corner. Back in its heyday I just wanted to explore and chill out on any level in the game for the whole day, so I grew to despise the 10 minute time limit the series imposed back then. The very fact that the levels seem slow, blocky and contradictory to time travel requiring you to run nonstop for a long time becomes appealing as, thanks to Sonic's particular gameplay, one can still figure ways to make them flow. I hated WWZ1 as much as anyone else as a child, but as the game grew on me it felt incredibly fun to precisely hop from platform to platform, use low ceilings to keep from entering the trap areas and make it to the goal in around a minute.

Ah...I just feel bad that now I'm nearly middle-aged, ever busy and broken I can't enjoy Sonic CD, or any other game with that mindset anymore.

#5 User is offline the.remaxter 

Posted 13 March 2019 - 03:50 PM

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Sonic CD is by far one of my favourite Sonic games, and the only reason i am thankful for having a Mega CD at the time. I believe it was the pairing of the soundtrack with the levels, and the cutscenes art style that sold it for me.

After all this time i still wonder what those rings inside the walls were all about. My guess was that it'd supposedly showed you rings that would be available in a different time period.

Although i can not praise this game enough, i really can't tell you if it's just nostalgia, and fond memories fuelling my love for this game.

And even though i have the Steam version, and the Android version, sometimes i still pop it in an emulator just to get to relive the (somewhat) full experience.

I know it may not have resonated with you as strongly, but i am glad you played it :)

#6 User is offline Tommo 

Posted 13 March 2019 - 04:18 PM

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Honestly, with the taxman port fixing literally every single one of my issues with the original CD version (Borked spindash, wonky collision detection, LOAD TIMES), there's no reason to ever go back in my eyes. I hope that one day Knuckles Chaotix, mediocre as it is, sees a similar port (hopefully one that fixes those god awful physics!). The music is great, and as a PAL-region player, I had the superior soundtrack when I first got the game as part of the Sonic Gems Collection.

My favourite zones are Quartz Quadrant and Wacky Workbench. Quartz Quadrant is fast paced and has lots of different paths; it's a lot of fun trying to find the fastest one.
Wacky Workbench is one that's grown on me over time (I used to hate it). Ironically, the more careful and deliberate you are with your movements, the faster you'll move through the zone as a whole; it's an exercise in platforming rather than holding right.

#7 User is offline Narel 

Posted 14 March 2019 - 04:56 AM

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View PostYoritoshi, on 13 March 2019 - 09:05 AM, said:

There is an unmatched sense of wonder to Sonic CD. Like how you can find item boxes in the darndest places, how the future timezones are just for bells and whistles and how there are several gimmicks and easter eggs that show up just once in some corner. Back in its heyday I just wanted to explore and chill out on any level in the game for the whole day, so I grew to despise the 10 minute time limit the series imposed back then. The very fact that the levels seem slow, blocky and contradictory to time travel requiring you to run nonstop for a long time becomes appealing as, thanks to Sonic's particular gameplay, one can still figure ways to make them flow. I hated WWZ1 as much as anyone else as a child, but as the game grew on me it felt incredibly fun to precisely hop from platform to platform, use low ceilings to keep from entering the trap areas and make it to the goal in around a minute.

Ah...I just feel bad that now I'm nearly middle-aged, ever busy and broken I can't enjoy Sonic CD, or any other game with that mindset anymore.



Oh yes. I'll play the game again as soon as I have time just to explore the levels. It sounds fun, but like you said the ten minute limit will be an issue. I think the more I play it, the more it will grow on me.
This post has been edited by Narel: 14 March 2019 - 05:56 PM

#8 User is offline Narel 

Posted 14 March 2019 - 06:00 PM

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View PostParleyMint, on 13 March 2019 - 12:34 AM, said:

The soundtrack alone makes the game top tier in my book.



Yeah! The music is amazing!

View PostPalas, on 12 March 2019 - 11:21 PM, said:

It's my absolute favorite Sonic game for the very same reasons you raised.

I love the zones. I love that they feel like playgrounds you have to truly master in order to get really fast and access the other time periods. I love that youget to choose how you want to beat the game. I love using speed as a tool to look for things, and then just generally pay around bouncing off badniks and monitors. I think it's the "purest" Sonic could ever get.

There are a lot of details I can get into, but these are my general thoughts.


I'll play the game again as soon as I have time, I want to explore them rather than speed through them.

#9 User is offline Grind Monkee 

Posted 14 March 2019 - 06:04 PM

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View PostTommo, on 13 March 2019 - 04:18 PM, said:

The music is great, and as a PAL-region player, I had the superior soundtrack when I first got the game as part of the Sonic Gems Collection.

Now maybe I'm misremembering, but wasn't the Gems version based on the old Sega PC version and as such, had the US soundtrack, rather than the vastly superior Japanese/Europe one?

#10 User is offline Narel 

Posted 14 March 2019 - 06:07 PM

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View Postthe.remaxter, on 13 March 2019 - 03:50 PM, said:

Sonic CD is by far one of my favourite Sonic games, and the only reason i am thankful for having a Mega CD at the time. I believe it was the pairing of the soundtrack with the levels, and the cutscenes art style that sold it for me.

After all this time i still wonder what those rings inside the walls were all about. My guess was that it'd supposedly showed you rings that would be available in a different time period.

Although i can not praise this game enough, i really can't tell you if it's just nostalgia, and fond memories fuelling my love for this game.

And even though i have the Steam version, and the Android version, sometimes i still pop it in an emulator just to get to relive the (somewhat) full experience.

I know it may not have resonated with you as strongly, but i am glad you played it :)/>


Maybe the more I play it the more it'll grow on me. Im glad I did play it, specially to get the good ending. I feel like I shold try to do it through the time travel mechanic, though that seems kind of hard.

View PostTommo, on 13 March 2019 - 04:18 PM, said:

Honestly, with the taxman port fixing literally every single one of my issues with the original CD version (Borked spindash, wonky collision detection, LOAD TIMES), there's no reason to ever go back in my eyes. I hope that one day Knuckles Chaotix, mediocre as it is, sees a similar port (hopefully one that fixes those god awful physics!). The music is great, and as a PAL-region player, I had the superior soundtrack when I first got the game as part of the Sonic Gems Collection.

My favourite zones are Quartz Quadrant and Wacky Workbench. Quartz Quadrant is fast paced and has lots of different paths; it's a lot of fun trying to find the fastest one.
Wacky Workbench is one that's grown on me over time (I used to hate it). Ironically, the more careful and deliberate you are with your movements, the faster you'll move through the zone as a whole; it's an exercise in platforming rather than holding right.



I only played Knuckles Chaotix once, and it was just a level.

Wacky Workbench had me frustrated for a bit until I figured I should slow down on it instead of going fast.

#11 User is offline Frostav 

Posted 14 March 2019 - 06:09 PM

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This is going to sound bizarre but honestly I think CD's whole design works better in 3D (not that anyone, fan or official, has tried). Exploring around for stuff hidden in nooks and crannies + momentum physics in 2D just...sucks. You can barely see around you and it forces you to keep a complete mental map of the act, something I've never been good at in the 2D games (I've played 3&K and Mania till my eyes bled but if you asked me to actually map out an act from them on paper, I'd be utterly lost--I just remember levels as collections of routes and "jump here, jump there"). In addition, making the levels big and explorable means that they have to be a bunch of awkward hallways stacked on top of each other and GOD that design just kinda sucks and is why Marble Garden is an awful zone :v: Sonic is not a character meant for slowly exploring big mostly non-linear levels--and no I'm not saying he's a GOTTA GO FAST speed demon either, he's a character focused on flow and, if not going fast, then almost never stopping for any long period of time. CD's design isn't merely flow-hindering, it's anti-flow by definition.
This post has been edited by Frostav: 14 March 2019 - 06:11 PM

#12 User is offline JaxTH 

Posted 14 March 2019 - 09:19 PM

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Sonic CD is not a good game.

#13 User is offline Tommo 

Posted 15 March 2019 - 01:17 AM

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View PostJaxTH, on 14 March 2019 - 09:19 PM, said:

Sonic CD is not a good game.


Care to elaborate?

#14 User is offline MastaSys 

Posted 15 March 2019 - 03:33 AM

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At first i didn't found it anything special, but as soon i tried to change all the futures of all zones of the game by traveling to the Past I found it's wonder.
It's almost like a puzzle game built on Sonic's classic gameplay, there's nothing like that in the series.
I guess if your head is to stuck on "Sonic 2"isms it's harder to apreciate it, but i challenge anyone who like Classic Sonic to beat the game like this at least one time in their lives.
This post has been edited by MastaSys: 15 March 2019 - 03:33 AM

#15 User is offline DigitalDuck 

Posted 15 March 2019 - 06:27 AM

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Sonic CD is not a good game. It's a great game.

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