Sonic Heroes - GameCube

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Sonic Heroes (GameCube)
Also for: PC, PS2, Xbox
Viewed: 3D Third-person, floating camera Genre:
Arcade origin:No
Developer: Sonic Team Soft. Co.: SEGA
Publishers: SEGA (GB/US/JP)
Released: 2003 (JP)
Mar 2004 (US)
6 Feb 2004 (GB)
Ratings: PEGI 3+
Accessories: Memory Card


Although world renowned for his 16-bit offerings on MegaDrive, Sonic the Hedgehog, everybody’s favourite rodent super hero, lost some of his edge when he made the transition to 3D in Sonic Adventure, focusing less on speed courses and more on adventure and exploration. But now there’s Sonic Heroes, an effort from Sega that takes Sonic back to his rollercoaster days on MegaDrive and that adds a brand new play mechanic at the same time.

“A tough team for a tough job” is the phrase Sega has attached to its latest offering. It’s an apt slogan for Sonic Heroes, and team play is what it’s all about. Firstly, players are required to choose from one of four preset teams, each playing host to three familiar characters from the Sonic universe. Team Rose is designed for beginners, complete with tutorial, whilst Team Dark is suited to more accomplished games players. Team Sonic and Team Chaotix lie somewhere in between the two.

Choosing a team is important, since it slightly effects the way in which Sonic Heroes is played in a single adventure. Each of the characters from each of the teams have their own unique abilities and objectives, but the game’s compulsory character combinations means there’s always a power player, a speed player and a light player. And as you might expect, there are certain obstacles throughout Sonic Heroes’ dozen or so levels that make these abilities a requisite to progress. The clever part is the fact that you must toggle between your three characters to achieve your goals, and this is made easy through an intuitive control method. Some sections require the use of speed, whilst other have players smashing through brick walls. Mission objectives can very slightly, but gameplay is largely the same, regardless of which team you choose.

From a visual standpoint, Sonic Heroes looks very nice, and like most games of this style, is well suited to GameCube hardware. The game does have a few issues when it comes to camera control, but it’s nothing that players can’t push past. Sega has struggled with Sonic over the past few years, but there is light at the end of the tunnel in Sonic Heroes. It’s all good!