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Sonic Superstars brings back 2D Sonic at high speed

Sonic, Tails, Knuckles and Amy Rose are back in an adventure that pays homage to the series’ 2D titles with a number of modern enhancements.

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The Sonic the Hedgehog franchise has had a cadence of titles in recent years, with releases that have taken the world’s most famous hedgehog to 2D and 3D worlds, trying to find a place as one of the most important mascots in the world of video games. This year we have the arrival of Sonic Superstars, a 2D title that will make us veterans remember the times of yesteryear, while we find completely renewed mechanics and graphics.

Sonic Superstars is a 2D platform title that maintains the mantra of the Sonic franchise: gotta go fast. All while jumping, spinning, and running at high speeds to explore the different levels, collect rings, and defeat enemies. The essence of the gameplay remains the same as it was in the nineties, running and jumping around the stage while collecting rings that serve as a shield against enemies. If you lose them all and get damaged again, you lose a life.

The story takes us to the Northstar Islands, a place where Sonic and his friends Tails, Knuckles and Amy Rose end up. It is there that they must stop Dr. Eggman, who along with Fang and a new character named Trip, are trying to capture all of the island’s native animals and turn them into Badniks.

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A world of replayability

If you’ve had the chance to play previous 2D Sonic titles, the level design is everything you’d expect and more. For those who haven’t, you’ll find a series of routes and paths that require you to run, jump, and occasionally pick up enough speed to reach new points. These scenarios are large enough to have different paths where the player’s skills will be put to the test.

Knowing that there are different routes invites players to replay the level to encounter everything and see the different ways to get there. However, don’t expect to unlock new stages by taking more complicated routes, as you’ll always come to the same end, most of the time facing some sort of boss.

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It’s also worth mentioning that each of the scenarios also holds its secrets. Throughout the levels and depending on the routes you take, you can find special and bonus stages where players who have had the opportunity to play the first titles in the franchise will immediately notice the hint of navigating through scenarios with 3D backgrounds, looking for medals and collecting rings. In addition to these sequences that take elements from the classics, we have new bonus stages that take advantage of these mechanics very well. These medals can later be used in multiplayer.

It is also in these areas that we will have access to Chaos Emeralds, which will give us new powers to use against enemies. From the ability to create clones that appear across the screen, the ability to climb waterfalls, slow down time, or hit you like a meteor, there is a wide catalog of powers if you can get your hands on them.

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The areas that are part of the Northstar Islands are very colorful, full of detail and extremely well maintained. From jungles, to temples in the sky, to fairs, the themes are varied in this release, accessible once unlocked from a hub that is quite easy to navigate, with a total of 12 zones to go through.

The gameplay is quite simple and with many options. One of the most interesting details is that Sonic Superstars allows you to play not only with Sonic, but also with all of his friends, each of whom has some ability that makes them unique and complementary to the rest of the heroes. Tails can float with his double tail, Knuckles can climb and break walls, while Amy Rose has a double jump and a powerful hammer to smash enemies. This balance of skills makes it much easier to find some of the treasures and secrets of the Northstar Islands.

With a little help from my friends

Something that has impressed us is that for the first time we can play the campaign with friends, since it supports up to four players. As in other multiplayer platform games, the chaos is an essential part, but well applied, it allows us to better explore all the areas we go through.

On the other hand, multiplayer has two other modes: Time Attack and Battle Mode. The first one is quite direct, where we will compete in finishing routes in the fastest way, leaving your mark on a Superstars world ranking.

In addition to speed, we have the Battle Mode, where four local players and eight online players compete in four types of gameplay: Racing, Star Collect, Survival, and Fighting. These battles will take place in both single-screen and split-screen, remember those bonus level medals we mentioned earlier? This is where they become important, as they allow you to customize your character and make it your own in multiplayer.

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Sonic Superstars has everything the 2D Sonic fan is looking for and more. The level design is truly impressive, with multiple paths and several secrets to uncover. On the other hand, the multiplayer portion is loaded so you can finish the story with the help of friends or compete in a series of mini-games. Although there is a lot of chaos, the ability to play Sonic in different ways is celebrated.