User Score

Mixed or average reviews- based on 74 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 46 out of 74
  2. Negative: 18 out of 74

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  1. Nov 12, 2014
    This game wad first released in 2010, at almost the same time as Sonic Colors. I often compare the two, and consistently conclude that Sonic Colors is far superior. However, this does not mean that the game is unenjoyable.

    The graphics are fine for a Wii game. The backgrounds are generally nice, and there are few graphic glitches or lag/framerate issues. However, Sonic's running
    animation is less then spectacular, to say the least.

    The music is stellar. While not the greatest Sonic music I've ever heard, it has a Sonic feel to it. Nothing stands out, and it may be forgotten, but the music is entertaining for your initial play through.

    Gameplay is a plus. Sonic has both his spin dash and his homing attack, which I enjoyed immensely. The bonus stages are fun as well. However, the physics harken back to Sonic 2006 at points and the rehashed bosses failed to excite me. The final boss was quite challenging and enjoyable, however.

    This is a game I would recommend purchasing while you still can. It's not the best Sonic game, but older fans will enjoy the call backs to the Genesis era and younger fans will love the new style.
  2. Dec 9, 2013
    after a bunch of disappointments like sonic 06,and sonic and the black knight, sega finally made a game that is a very late sequel to sonic 3 and knuckles sonic 4 ep 1. sonic 4 ep 1 is set right after sonic 3 and knuckles. in this game, you can only play as sonic, no tails, no knuckles. but this feels like sonic 1. it's great that sega is going back to their roots and making a 2D game. everything looks great in graphics and all of the zones are based off zones from the classic sonic games. the zones are, splash hill zone, casino street zone, lost labyrinth zone, and mad gear zone. and the bosses are just remakes of bosses from the classic games, like the boss of green hill zone returning as the boss of splash hill zone. sonic also has a homing attack in this game now this is not as bad as you might think but sometimes it just feels too easy to get a lot of speed going. but this really does feel like a late sequel to sonic 3 and knuckles and that's basically what it is. and the graphics have been updated to fit today's standards. now there are some problems with this game, for one thing it's extremely short and easy but i still loved every second of it second, all of the bosses are ridiculously easy, with the homing attack you can beat them all in less than a minute. also the homing attack is not optional there are some areas where you have to use it like when you see a line of enemies over a bottomless pit. this sometimes does not feel like a classic sonic game, but it's at least the best sonic game until sonic colors came along. after all of the rough time sega had with 3D sonic games after sonic heroes, they really needed to make something like this, and this game is a great continuation of sonic 3 and knuckles, but the question is where is knuckles, where is tails, why is sonic just alone in this game, and why couldn't they just make sonic 4 one game instead of making it episodic, but it just might be trying to be like sonic 3 and sonic and knuckles which were two separate games that make one game together. i just wish that sonic 4 ep 1 and 2 had lock on technology like sonic and knuckles so that we can play through all of sonic 4 ep 1 and 2 as one game, wouldn't that be great. but all in all sonic 4 has great graphics, great zones, memorable remakes, great music especially the final boss theme, and great gameplay, there's no story other than sonic having to stop dr eggman it's as simple as that and that's the way i like it. Expand
  3. May 19, 2012
    This game was not perfect, but It is still great sonic fun. People are too critical, sonic is a very hard game to make you have to make very long stages since sonic moves through them so quickly and still keep them enjoyable. The physics just don't bother me, If you play a sonic game how it's meant to be by racing through the levels quickly you won't have time to notice imperfections in physics. I agree the magic of the original sonic games still isn't here but It's a damn good effort and I will always welcome more games like this over 3d sonic adventures. Please give me more 2d sonic games and more chances to earn chaos emeralds! Expand
  4. Nov 19, 2011
    Falling directly below average, Sonic the Hedgehog 4: Episode I is a flat-out disappointment. Playing like a lite internet-game version of the classics, replete with awkward physics and awkward design ideas, it manages to both fail to capture that classic Sonic feel, and (unfortunately) assure there is more of this to come, in the way of additional episodes. Here's to hoping Sega lets this one fall under the radar and not insist on dragging it out to further embarrass itself. Expand
  5. Sep 10, 2011
    Fantastic reboot o the older games. Good music, great gameplay and graphics, and a fantastic new reboot to the classic gaming sonic and am excited for the next addition in the series
  6. Aug 1, 2011
    No. Just... no. This game was a huge mistake. A step in the wrong direction for Sega. The level design is cheap and repetitive, the music is grating, and the bosses, while keeping the same nostalgic feel as the previous Sonic the Hedgehog games, still feel so bland, and stripped of any kind of intelligence. I grew up with Sonic, I played all of the Genesis releases, and this game does NOT deserve to be called Sonic the Hedgehog 4. Even if you were new to Sonic, the game is still bland, repetitive, annoying, and $10 too expensive for what it has to offer. Expand
  7. Jul 2, 2011
    Sonic 4 is very fun to play, but it is just plain short. I beat the final boss in about 3 hours. Sonic games need to be far longer. This is also the main reason why I prefer Sonic Colors over Sonic 4. And not only is Sonic 4 short, but it's also EASY. Mad Gear Zone needs more difficulty. The only part of the game that was actually hard was the final boss, which was just a remake of a Sonic 2 boss. There's no multiplayer mode either. On the plus side, Sonic 4 does a pretty good job of bringing back the old Sonic charm from the Genesis games, and the game has great frame rate. The Homing Attack is also a nice addition. But in the end, Sonic 4 feels more like a sequel to the original Sonic the Hedgehog than a sequel to Sonic 3 & Knuckles. It's just not up-to-date with today's video game standards. Expand
  8. Jun 26, 2011
    It looks like a flash game, and that makes it hard to believe that you are playing it on the wii. It is a good game but it doesn't feel like you should buy it. It is more like a free download on your pc
  9. May 22, 2011
    It's not terribly fun. However, Sonic the Hedgehog 4: Episode 1 does have some unique gameplay that's both nostalgic and fresh. Pros: Excellent new design and gameplay features; new moves; fantastic level design. Cons: Too easy, too short, including the final boss battle; awkward control; cheesy soundtrack.
  10. Jan 14, 2011
    Feels like a lazy, half-assed effort from SEGA. I think they assumed making a retro-throwback game would be easy, and that they could do it on the quick.

    Sorry guys. It takes effort. The levels have to be unique. The game has to be long. The music has to be good. It has to bring interesting new gameplay features to the table if they're going to call this the sequel to Sonic 3, but in
    every measurable sense this is a step back. Expand
  11. Dec 28, 2010
    I grew up with Sonic. I remember the ongoing battles of SEGA v. Nintendo. Sonic was the mascot of speed. He was the pure embodiment of what was bigger, better, and badder about SEGA. Nintendo was pictured as the old, slow, broken down milk truck with SEGA as the Mach 6 with Sonic at the helm. So irony comes into play when 20 years later Iâ
  12. Dec 27, 2010
    With Sonic the Hedgehog 4, Sega and Sonic Team play it safe; but how safe is too safe? that is what each fan ultimately has to answer for themselves. Let's get the ugly out of the way first, I will in no way try to disagree about the wonky physics in this game and am like many others disapointed in that aspect of the game but the problem is, people are burning this game at the steak because it doesn't run exactly like the originals, the thing is, you can still do everything that you could before, sometimes however it just needs to be done in a different way. Once you figure this out, you have a new classic in front of you. The graphics are great and the music sounds much like a nod to the genesis classics, everything is also set up just as the old gen titles. When I say play it safe though, many fans will be split on one thing, this game should perhaps not Sonic 4 as much as "New Sonic the Hedgehog" as while the level designs themselves are new, the ideas and backgrounds behind them are riped right out of sonic the hedgehog 1 and 2, even the bosses are remakes of four bosses from S1&2 (some argue that zone 3's is new but it's really a new take on the final boss in Sonic 1 if you look at them side by side. In the end, if you are nostalgic or just want a new sonic than you can't go wrong. On a final note, for those having a hard time deciding on the console to buy this for here are some things to consider about the Wii version inparticular. For one the graphics are not nearly as sharp on an HD set as the 360 and ps3 version but if your buying it for the wii you're prepared for this. One thing that does stand out however is that due to size restrictions on the wii ware version of the game the Music is in lower quality and sounds much like midi chiptune music than the beutiful arrangments from the 360/ps3 and even I phone releases (which given the choice all three consoles are better obviously unless you must have it on the go ). The result however, may even be a selling pt to diehard fans giving a nod to the wii version as the result of these lower quality arrangements is something that sounds quite different and I'd go as far as to say it gives it a more retro 16 bit vibe, very cool or very bad depending on who you are. In the end, if you want a hard copy of the originals play the originals, if you can overlook the physics however, you have no reason not to give sonic 4 a try. If you love the demo then you'll like what the rest of the game has to offer, and thanks to the return of the chaos emeralds and super sonic anywhere, the replay value more than warrants the $15.00 price tag. Expand
  13. Dec 21, 2010
    It's a good remember of these classical sonic, I feel like playing Sonic and Sonic 2.

    It's easier and shorter, casual gamers can play Sonic 4 Ep. 1 without problems.
  14. Nov 26, 2010
    After several 3D sub-par console games which have all received much criticism from much critics and the overall sense that the series is going downhill, SEGA decided to go back the original formula that made the series great and made Sonic the Hedgehog 4: Episode 1. While the gameplay is as good as it was decades ago, the game runs into some problems. First, the game is very short, much shorter than Sonic 1, 2, and 3. Second, it costs $15 dollars (I would say it is worth $10), which is too high of a price. Purists and ardent fans of the original SEGA will complain that there has been too much change to the series. If so, they should just go and play the original games if they want no change. But my complaint is that it is too similar to the original games. After 20-odd years, there should be more depth. Or at the very least, more length. Expand
  15. Nov 23, 2010
    It's ok. It's a solid game but there's just no momentum. If you're expecting a classic game this is not for you, try Sonic Colors instead. Hopefully episode 2 will improve on momentum
  16. Nov 19, 2010
    Sonic 4 doesn't know what it wants to be. On one hand the gameplay seems to flow smoothly just like it's predecessors, and on the other it becomes some weird hybrid fest that doesn't really involve much input. The physics as much as I tried, did become a problem one way or another, and the added difficulty spikes combined with some mediocre level design only serves to slap players in the face. The art style was fantastic and simple for it's use, but games aren't meant to be looked at now are they? Soundtrack wise the game's musical tracks although more repetitive are catchy and enjoyable, however the boss music considering the mood establish by clashing with eggman in the 90's doesn't cut it. All in all I'll give Dimps and ST some slack considering that this is just really a refresher; but I expect much better from episode 2. Expand
  17. Oct 25, 2010
    a very nice game, sega shows how great they really can be, the physics are sort of weird but easily can be adjusted to i sort of wish it was 2 d but it's still a amazing game and i love it!
  18. Oct 23, 2010
    After the recent disappointments that had plagued the Sonic Franchise, Sega went back to the creator of the Sonic Advance/Rush game developer DIMPS to give Sonic fans a game that finally is worthy of the name Sonic. Before this humble reviewer placed his piece, notice that there are a lot of negative scores. This is either from Oldschool fans that were expecting an experience akin to the Genesis/Megadrive days, or Newschool fans that I might deem "Brain-drained" of logic and reason.

    Because seriously: A bad Sonic game by critics is a good Sonic game by users; A good sonic game by critics is a bad Sonic game by users? That is a serious let down and a disgrace to the word, "fanbase".

    The story is razor thin, akin to the razor thin plot points of the Genesis/Megadrive days. Eggman (Robotnik...), after losing to Sonic on Angel Island plots his revenge by bringing the old enemies of the genesis/megadrive days to kill Sonic. Sonic is not having any of that. It's not the story people mind, it's the actual gameplay

    For starters let's get one thing straight. Most of those complaining said a slew of complaints. Mostly in regards to Physics. After playing this game many times, I see nothing wrong with the physics. The usual complaint was Sonic wouldn't "roll fast on a slope" or "roll fast along the ground" and "would drop instantly". All these factors are because there is a strong gravity code in place and if the player is not holding a left or right direction in the pad, the old saying, "gravity brings you down" rings soundly. When you test this theory I have implemented, you will notice Sonic being able to go fast even in ball form and farther too.

    While physics is fine and dandy, the game has some minor glitches like Sonic running up a 90 degree wall with barely any speed, so one would hope this will be improved later down the line. The game also relies heavily on the homing implementation, which is fine but could be removed at some certain points. A minor complaint is that Dimps has a rather nasty habit of over-placing dash boards and springs. Some of them could be removed due to the fact that Sonic has good control and ability, and in the hands of an expert gamer, could easily be untapped. That doesn't make the game bad in the end. It's a great game and it gets challenging as one progresses through.

    As far as the extras are concern like graphics and music and the like, what the wii lacks in graphics, it makes up for it in terms of fluid gameplay and the music (save for mad gear world) fits despite the limited loop. It's the cheesy sounding music that makes us all feel nostalgic when playing the old games. While it nary holds a candle to the past music (3and K had Michael Jackson doing the tracks (nuff' said)), it's much better than hearing different variations of "Seven Rings in Hand" on almost EVERY menu/option/level end theme.

    Overall a great start and an excellent Wiiware title to download amongst the shovelware. Sonic is back, baby!
  19. Oct 21, 2010
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Sonic the Hedgehog 4: Episode 1

    Sonic the Hedgehog 4 manages to captivate tha feeling and type of game of the past Mega Drive 16 bit era. The game is the first one after Sonic and Knuckles to actually remind us that "sonic-ing" does not mean mindless running but a combination of running and stopping to do sone accurate jumping or clever platforming. These are elements that are found in the new sonic game. I love the music in some -but not all- levels. The soundtrack of the first level is very unique and within the spirit of sonic music. I also like the labyrinth zone music and oh- the bosses rhythm!

    The graphics of Sonic 4 have kept the spirit of the series and they do not try to do something "new". This is a good thing. They manage tyo captivate the classic artwork wothout exaggerations (that can be found in some soniv fan games). The graphics are hi-def colorful, clear, detailed, with some wellcoming sparse 3d use (see cards in Casino Zone) that is just enough and should not be overused.
    Sonic sprite is similar to the old good sonic. It is neither too childish (sonic advance) nor too angry. Personally I very much like the fast running effect of his legs and the faithful upgrade of the "almost falling", "look up-down" and die animations. Regarding the gameplay I would like to distinctly refer to the following parameters
    Controls: sonic accelerates slowly, this is not a problem. in fact I find it helpful when i want to make more accurate moves in platforming bits of the game. Once sonic starts running fast the experience is faithful to the classic sonic series. Sonic is not slow. Instead he is more controllable and it is a pitty that many reviewers disagree with this point. When running forward button should constantly be pressed and this is neither good nor bad. Actually I was used in holding forward button all time when sonic runs, so when I firstly played the game, I didn't even notice this issue. Finally the dash attack is a very welcome addition but what could be exluded is the supported forward moving while on air.

    Level design: the levels are finally what I would like to see in a 2d sonic. Not too fast not to cumbersome. They are also multipath and this add replay value to the game. What I certainly didn't like is the free level selection. The surprise "what's next" feeling is not there in sonic 4.

    Difficulty: way too easy. No reason for sooo many lives. Didn't SEGA notice this before the release. The replay of early levels 5-6 times is enough to collect 30 extra lives! The result is that the game can be completed in few hours. There are some tricky bits in some levels. They are so fun that I would certainly replay them from scratch once the Game Over appers. The final boss is tricky. But not so tricky if you get there with 30 extra lives. Other than this, it is a very fun final boss.

    To conclude, the game is a very good sequel to sonic and knuckles, and I consider it as an actual sequel. I would like to see the forthcoming episodes and I really want to see a retail edition with the whole game in the end, at a reasonable price! If I was to give detailed rankings to the game, the scores would be as follows:
    Graphics 8.5
    Sound 8
    Gameplay 9
    Replay Value 8
    Score 9

    If you have any questions regarding this review, you can email me at
  20. Oct 20, 2010
    Honestly this is a horrible game. I got scammed with the 15 dollars and got so dissapointed :'( I gave it a chance, I really did. I really wanted to love it but DAMNN IT SUCKSSSSSS!!!!!!!!!!
  21. Oct 20, 2010
    Sonic 4 is a fantastic game kinda easy but don't believe what the users say on metacritic, they are full of crap, they are the same people that complained about sonics design and the 2.5D gameplay lol, it feels like sonic is back as Mario''s biggest rival again,

    but i still stand by what i say and think Sonic 4 should have been released as a standalone retail game
    just add more levels, boss battles, mini games and add more Characters like Tales, Knuckles and Shadow.. i say its kinda dumb making it a downloadable when 2D games is making a big return as a retail disk game DOWNLOAD IT NOW.. 1500 Nintendo points Expand
  22. Oct 17, 2010
    Sonic The Hedgehog 4: Episode 1 is a great game. I'm glad that the game goes back to Sonic's roots. It plays almost like the classics and yes I said almost because the physics are a little different. Now different doesn't mean it's bad. It is a little weird to see Sonic sometimes walking on a slope and gravity can be on the floaty side. But even still It doesn't break the game at all. Infact it makes SuperSonic much more controlable than the Genesis games. Physics aside. The controls of the game are spot on. It's pretty much as you remembered it on the Genesis. The Spindash is useful once again and the homing attack is a welcomed addition to the 2D gameplay. Episode 1 only contains 4 zones with 3 acts each along with a boss act. Now that may sound short, But considering the amount of acts per zones and the length that some require. Episode 1 can arguably be the same length as Sonic The Hedgehog 3 (Alone). All the levels are based on zones from Sonic 1 & 2 with elements from Sonic 3. Splash Hill Zone is basicly Green Hill Zone with swinging ropes and a beautful sunset Act 3. Casino Street Zone is Casino Night Zone but more casino themed with slots in Act 1, Cards in Act 2, & Sonic 3's cannons in Act 3. Lost Labyrinth Zone is well the name speaks for itself but not as dangerous as the original with a unique act 2 with a torch and mine carts. Mad Gears Zone! Metropolis Zone anyone?. And finally Egg Station Zone which is an boss rush version of Death Egg Zone and that pretty much it. Graphicly, Sonic 4 is a very pretty game. All the enviroments look great and nostalgic. Same goes for the sound effects. 16 bit sounds never get old. The soundtrack is also pretty good. Most of the music fit the levels and some jingles are remixes from Sonic 1 and 3. But clearly some tracks are better than others. As with all 2D Sonic titles. The Chaos Emeralds are hidden inside special stages and once you collect them all. Super Sonic can be played in all levels which I am very happy to see coming back. Episode 1 is a great game as well as a nostalgic one. But I do think Sega went too far on nostalgia. I mean a nostalgia game is nice and it's about the right time for one, But in Episode 1 Nostalgia is all it is. Hardly any original content whats so ever. I had the same kind of issue with New Super Mario Bros Wii. last year. Going back to the roots of a franchise doesn't mean to rehash everything. Now the new twists and turns on the levels and bosses are creative but alot of them we have already seen in previous handheld titles. Time Attack is a nice feature and completing for best time and score on the leaderboards are cool. Theirs not much else to say about this game since this is only Episode 1. We only have a taste of what Sonic The Hedgehog 4 will be. Overall this is a great game but it's not by all means perfect. The physics are noticably different,The great overuse of nostalgia. Also Episode 1 lacks Tails and Knuckles. Come on Sega, I miss those guys. It's been almost 5 years since Sonic 06. No more Sonic solo games. We need them back. But with those flaws and nickpicks aside it's a great game and worthy of the name Sonic 4. And it's only the beginning... Expand
  23. Oct 15, 2010
    Yeah I'm dissapointed, yeah I'm comparing this sonic game to it's genesis glory. Sue me, Sonic 4 should be compared to the 16 bit games because we all know that at least that much potential is possible.

    I could go on all day about my personal gripes (don't like the 2.5 D, don't care for the special stages, etc.) but for the sake of this critique, I'll limit my complaints to the worst

    First, the camera is too close. When sonic finally manages to get sped up, you have about a half second to respond to the oncoming badnik/trap. This has the side effect of making the world feel cramped.

    Second, the physics suck. Pretty much every bad review on this site has to do with the physics. All I have to add is that it's worse than you think. Controlling Sonic feels stiff, and holy smokes he got slower. Third: what the hell is the homing attack doing here?! The homing attack may have been a necessity in the 3D realm where delicate platforming is required, but this game just abuses it. The game actually would have been pretty easy with such an over powered attack, except that you never even see the enemy coming.

    All in all, this sonic game lacked any sort of epic feeling from the previous games. In fact, there doesn't seem to be much feeling at all. I'm rather sad though. The sega team had one simple task that they've managed to fail for over ten years at: give us back sonic. I assure you that this is not the sonic we've been waiting for.
  24. Oct 15, 2010
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. oh yes... oh well, could be better, but could be much worse, if someone understands me... hm... i think that the game may have left much to be desired for some fans who are from a sonic or a little more of that, but I really liked the game! but... you know, relax! why is just the first episode, i think the harvest has yet to show a lot of this Sonic ! and... well, probably the Sonic 4 is basically equal to the versions of Micro$oft or COPY AND then I can talk about the Wii version, and the same in the other two talk, many fans did not like the PS3 for Sonic to be very heavy. I personally saw no problem with that, if the physics of Sonic 4 would equal that of Sonic 1 - & Kncukles, nobody would complain, and vice versa. I liked the soundtrack, but really, yes you can improve for the next ep.! despite being the same GAME! Expand
  25. Oct 15, 2010
    The graph's use the only thing that sites it apart from most of the games today it has kept it since the first was realised the control of the game is medium the quietly of the game over all to me and others are ever good and what makes it so easy to connect with the game is the story
  26. Oct 14, 2010
    For a game trying to throw it back to the Genesis days it fails to nail many of the things that made that game great. The clunky controls and physics fail to convince me I'm playing a Sonic game or a Mario game for that matter.
  27. Oct 14, 2010
    What's with all the hate for this game? I have replayed the Mega Drive classics many times over and Sonic 4 isn't much worse. Sure, maybe it's not quite as great, but it comes pretty damn close. I have no problem with the physics or the homing attack. It's not the same, but it does feel a lot like you're playing the Mega Drive games. The biggest difference, which I noticed as soon as I started playing, was that if you let go of the D-pad in mid-air after jumping, you fall straight down. But after that it never effected me. I never stopped holding down the D-pad in mid-air, and it felt normal. In fact, in a couple of places this feature comes in handy (like when doing speed-runs or precise platforming). So to me it played a lot like the Mega Drive games, but with a homing attack (which I really like BTW). The visuals, aside from being 2.5D HD, are very reminicent of the old games (Sonic's spines aside, but if you really care, get a life), the music is just like the Mega Drive games, and the sound effects are too. Sonic has returned... But I do have a slight niggle. This thing is 1200 MS points. A tad much for the ammount of content, but I feel it was worth it. If you've never played a 2D Sonic game, go play Sonic 2. If you like it, get the others and this. I feel it is a worthy entry to the series. Final verdict: 87% Expand
  28. Oct 14, 2010
    Do not listen to the idiots giving this game a bad review; they are obviously too upset with minor nitpicks ("THE PHYSICS AREN'T EXACTLY LIKE THEY WERE IN THE OLD TITLES THEREFORE THIS IS THE WORST GAYEM EVAR!!!11111!!11!1one"), and thus, they are not capable of formign a valid critique of the game. Sonic 4 is a fine title, and excels in the vast majority of what it touches upon. Sonic is appropriately fast in this title (He is the same speed as he was in the original Sonic the Hedgehog), and for the first time in ages, a Sonic game actually has complex, branching level design (You--get this--don't just "press right" to win!). This game is, by and large, incredible. The level design is top-notch, the Sonic 1-esque special stages are challenging, and it's a blast to play. I do have a few nitpicks with the game; mainly, the controls are not as tight as in the classic Sonic games, extra lives are too easily come by, and I dislike how the game requires you to use the homing attack in certain situations, but again, these are all minor, minor issues, and the good far outweighs the bad. I almost cried after I played through a few of the levels. Sega finally listened, and gave us fans what we wanted. The Sonic I remember from so many afternoons as a child is finally back.â Expand
  29. Oct 14, 2010
    Absolutely awful. Seriously. I was so excited for Sonic 4, downloaded it, and was frustrated by the middle of the 1st level. The homing mechanic is more aggravating than helpful, and the physics feel NOTHING like the original Sonic games. If you don't believe me, watch this video. The footage speaks for itsself. The only thing they got right is the graphics are pretty, and the music is decent, which is why I gave them a 2. Expand
  30. Oct 13, 2010
    Sega managed to almost make me cry - with sadness. I've been longing for a real 2D Sonic since Sonic & Knuckles came out. I even had a name for it: "Sonic 4". Well, years later they came up with Sonic 4. Let me break it down here: Sound FX: 10/10. They are the actual Genesis-Era blips. Music: 10/10. Superb work, kept the spirit of the original catchy songs. Level Design: 10/10. It really feels like a Sonic level, after all this years. Graphics: 5/10. Level graphics are good, but Sonic's model looks dumb, and didn't quite match the games graphic style. 2.5D didn't do the trick, this time. Finally, Controls: 0/10. It's just wrong. There is no inertia, especially when jumping. It doesn't control like Sonic. In fact, it doesn't control like anything I ever played. You release the D-Pad, Sonic stops. Like Pitfall. Nothing should control like Pitfall in 2010, let alone a game in a franchise know for its high quality gameplay.
    I really hope Sega fix that. I could also ask for some vintage skins for Sonic's model, but that would be just a fluff. The important thing here is the controls, and Sega managed to destroy the whole thing with a few lines of code.
    Score: (10+10+10+5+0) / 5 = 7
    7 * how bad the controls are = 2
  31. Oct 13, 2010
    This is truly sonic 4 as you imagined it, if you were having a nightmare. Right off the bat it feels that Sega had forgotten how to make a 2d sonic game and that the fans who make fan games and surpassed Sega.

    First off are the physics, they make sonic feel "Slower than molasses going up hill both ways in January, with crutches!" Sonic's top speed is almost equal to that of sonic 1 if you
    don't spindash, There is no inertia and the momentum is near nonexistent.

    Next are the gimmicks, They're alright for the most part. The mine cart plays like the one from Donkey Kong Country and the zip lines work fine. But some of them need work still. The cannon in Casino Street allows you to stand on top of it instead of sucking you in like in Sonic 3. It also make the "fwomp" sound that the Sonic 2 Oil Ocean caps make when blown off.

    The Vines in Splash Hill act 2 wind up having less power than those of Angel Island and the slots only appear in 1 act of Casino street (unless they appear again in act 2 on the iPod version).

    The special stages are hard, no 2 ways about it. you're going to be practicing them as if you were playing Sonic Megamix's or Sonic 1's special stages. Only, you won't have unlimited time and you will have control over the stage.

    If you aren't big on using the homing attack, you will be before the end of the game as some acts have homing attack points where if you don't use it, you die.

    The boss and badniks are all reused. The Lost Labyrinth boss though is a bit more original once you get out of the survival part while the Splash hill boss is more like Sega copying the Seaside Hill boss from Sonic Megamix (see youtube video)

    The music is alright, nothing bad, but the boss music needs to be redone or replaced. Preferably replaced.

    The game itself is too short, uses Sonic advance 3's level structure fused with the genesis games. Uses Megaman x for how level select is done with an option to just go to the next stage that must be done after every stage. Over all, I give this game a 3/10 because i did enjoy the music and its physics were only just better than Sonic the Hedgehog Genesis on GBA, but for $15 I could get all 3 Sega Master System Sonic games at better quality and more levels.
  32. Oct 13, 2010
    Sonic the Hedgehog 4 Episode I fails miserably to live up to his predecessors, and even worse, fails miserably as a game itself.

    First let's talk about the clunky controls, you feel like you're controlling Sonic in the moon, the jump is so light that it becomes awkward to control, the Homing Attack, which is a ability that doesn't go well in a 2D game and only serves to take out the
    challenge making it too easy, is not optional and it is pratically shoved down on the player's throat, you can't pass a level without using it, you depend on it to proceed through any level without being hit by a enemy attack, to make matters worse, there are times that the Homing Attack doesn't respond in the right moment, making you miss the enemy and Sonic doing an aerial dash straight in a enemy's direction making you lose rings.

    The awful level design also doesn't help, there are loads of boost pads spread through the levels, you barely control Sonic and the game plays itself, full automation.

    Now the worst thing about this abomination of a game are the physics, you can't have a momentum based gameplay in a Sonic Game if the physics are broken, you can easily make Sonic walk up a hill, walk through a loop or stand on a slope without falling, this is just ridiculous.

    The bosses are the same as the genesis games with a pinch mode, that is stupid idea by itself, but then, the Homing Attack just make the bosses as easy as chewing water.

    The music just try to be nostalgic, but it gets repetitive and annoying because they use the same instruments over and over

    Overall, this game is a complete disgrace to the genesis legacy, it sucks, don't waste your time with this thing like i did.

    I can't give it more than 3.0
  33. Oct 12, 2010
    Sonic returns to its classic roots in this excellent brand new game, despite that it copies many elements of sonic the hedgehog 2, it still makes up for it with new ones like the homing attack that works like a charm! The level design is great and unique all the way through, and it plays well both in consoles and on the Iphone as well. The only reason I can't give it the 9 score is because of being way too short, while I know it's an episode, is still too expensive considering that you can get the original games at a lower price but with a lot more levels. Expand
  34. Oct 12, 2010
    Sonic 4 feels like a wierd, Flash-based version of Sonic 1 & 2 made by a fan who took a course in video game design. I give Sonic Team credit for going back to his roots, but it's done so ineptly here that it's kind of embarassing. What breaks the game is the controls. Sonic is very, very floaty. It can be very hard to land accurately on a moving or flipping platform because of this. Momentum is also very odd in the game. In previous 2D Sonics, when you roll into a ball and go down a hill, you can keep your momentum for a long time without holding Right on the controller. Not here. Even when you hold right you can slow to a crawl. Run across one of the classic corkscrew loops and you'll find yourself suddenly moving slower, only to suddenly speed up again when you exit the loop. It's incredibly jarring. The music, which is meant to sound like classic Genesis tunes, is tinny and uncatchy, a very poor homage to the original games. I found myself getting a headache listening to it. I'm glad that I only paid $15 for part 1, because now I know not to spend any more money on further chapters. This is NOT the return to Sonic you were hoping for. I'm very disappointed. Expand
  35. Oct 11, 2010
    I grew up playing the Genesis games, and love them just as much today. When I first picked up the controller, my first thoughts were "oh no, that's changed" and "dang, that's different." but 10 minutes after I started I was really just nitpicking at the greatest Sonic game released in 16 years. It's a bit short, but it's everything you'd remember from the old days - with lots of nostalgic bits thrown in! My roommate and I both felt like we were back in the 90's. I give this game a 10/10 Expand
  36. Oct 11, 2010
    Poor game, bad soundtrack and TOO EASY! I dont like this game. The bosses are easy too, the soundtrack is too weak, not to mention Spider-Sonic ¬ ¬ SEGA... try next time.

Generally favorable reviews - based on 13 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 9 out of 13
  2. Negative: 0 out of 13
  1. Dec 25, 2010
    No just a rehash, but a brilliant game in itself. Sonic reigns once more. [Issue#232, p.88]
  2. Dec 25, 2010
    Purer and cheaper than Sonic Colours, this is a great reboot for 2D Sonic. [Issue#56, p.74]
  3. Dec 22, 2010
    That's what Sonic 4 is all about: trying to be new while recapturing those fleeting moments of brilliance from the old Genesis titles.