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Mixed or average reviews- based on 93 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 41 out of 93
  2. Negative: 38 out of 93

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  1. 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%
  2. Oct 15, 2010
    please people do not listen to the idiot noob sonic fans. sonic 4 is wonderful. the only problem i have with this that it short. sonic fans always want to find somtheing to **** about and it's annoying. 2D works for sonic very well, and it's how sonic should have been all these years. there's only about teny tiny mixed reviews of sonic 4 & a few STUPID BAD ONES. and aLOT of good ones. sega finally got the hint and listen to the fans. the games is just pure sonic fun/ the music is great/ no **** story/ no bunch of lame characters! just SONIC!!! all we want is SONIC.episode 1 is just the begining.i can't wait for ep 2 to come out. great job sega, and welcome back sonic. Expand
  3. Oct 17, 2010
    I don´t understand all the hate for this game. Sure it isn't perfect, music could be much better and it should have more levels and not based on the old ones, but the controls are good, I don't get why most of people say the game's physics are wrong, the little differences with the originals don't alter gameplay in any significant way. The homing attack adds variety to the game, but the game does not force you to use it, you can jump just like old times.

    I've been playing the classic games for years over and over again and I don't see Sonic faster than in this game, in fact I would say it was slower. In many sections you would need precision and timing just like any other platformer, but in this game that's not very usual.

    As a fan, I expect a much better Episode 2 from Sega, but I won't say this game is bad because I am a whiner and I'll never be satisfied with anything that isn't EXACTLY like 15 years ago.
  4. Oct 28, 2010
    SEGA has broken the Sonic-Cycle with this, although this game is short, this is much like a classic Sonic game, as Sonic should be. All the best things out of Sonic games is displayed here: good graphics, ace music, frustration (lol), and SONIC! :)
  5. Nov 11, 2010
    it's a mean, cruel joke to give this game anything less than a positive review, what people don't understand is that sonic was NEVER fast, he might occasionally zip down a hill quickly, he still does that in 4, the controls are perfect, and sonic's "new look" has been this way since 1998 in sonic adventure... not so new, and it's cooler, so get used to it. there's little more to say, the game plays just like the old games, it is a sequel after all so i expect changes, all of which were great, amazing game. Expand
  6. Oct 20, 2010
    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
  7. Nov 26, 2010
    "OMG, Sonic doesn't run fast enough" "OMG Sonic has a homing attack now!" Please just get real. This was the Sonic Game i was waiting for, iam a Hardcore sonic fan and i have to say that this game was Awesome. Now let me get Some thing's out of the way: I Loved Sonic Adventures, I liked Sonic Heroes, I Hated Sonic 06 and i thought Sonic Unleashed was Ok! And now i think Sonic 4 Episode 1 is Awesome, and this is just Episode 1 so you know, Episode 2 will be even better! For now, if your a TRUE Sonic fan,Download it Because it is Nostalgic Awesomeness at its Best! Expand
  8. Jul 5, 2011
    A decent attempt at trying to bring sonic back to his glory days. There are a few little things that niggle away at me though, Visually the game has some excellent scenery and enemies, sonic himself seems a little stretched though. The toon style colouring didnt help too much either, it made the game look a little tacky and cheap.

    Gameplay some of the classic and new elements worked very
    well. The lack of any kind of ease in and ease out when moving through the air was a little unusual. Felt like you were in a Zero G enviroment.

    Still a much better installment in the series unlike Sonic Unleashed, Sonic Heroes, Sonic The Hedgehog (2006). Look forward to the second part
  9. 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.
  10. Sep 18, 2011
    the division about this among gamers seems really pathetic to me. it is like people who loved the old games would NEVER be satisfied with anything new that resembles the old. i wonder why they keep buying new sonic games then, should just stick to the old games.
    if you are however somebody who is not afraid of 3d graphics and who actually KNOWS sonic and has not not played it in 20 years
    and expects sonic to be something different than it actually was, then i'm sure you will enjoy this game. it is absolutely true to the old games and only has very minor issues that i can't even remember any more as of writing this review. Expand
  11. 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

Mixed or average reviews - based on 43 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 22 out of 43
  2. Negative: 5 out of 43
  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
    A good, if unspectacular, platform outing. [Issue#66, p.104]
  3. Dec 22, 2010
    Sonic The Hedgehog Episode 4 seems to be more of a Sonic the Hedgehog 1.2 (calling it "A.5" would put it too close to the brilliant Sonic 2...). The levels don't surprise, the soundtrack bores, and more importantly the blue hedgehog's inertia and dullness make it a real disappointment in 2010. We'll try not to resent it too much, since it's a rather cheap downloadable game, but it's still a very short game as well. Love is blind, so some may still enjoy it, but we'd rather advise them to try out the DS games, which are closer to today's expectations of a 2D journey with the supersonic hedgehog.