Sonic is here to celebrate his 31st birthday with his latest game Sonic Origins. It’s a collection of the mobile widescreen remasters of Sonic 1, 2 & CD along with a new widescreen remaster of Sonic 3 & Knuckles.
Kyoni is a long-time member of the Tails’ Channel Discord server, and an occasional website contributor. He’s someone who is generally not too opinionated as most hardcore Sonic fans.
With the exception of 3&K, these ports have existed since 2011 with Sonic CD, and 2013 with Sonic 1 & 2. However, the latter ports have never been available on consoles and PC until now.
All the games play like the originals and retain their enhancements, smooth gameplay and added features from the mobile ports; including playable Knuckles along with the spin dash in Sonic 1, playable Tails in Sonic 1 and CD, remastered special stages, and a brand new zone in Sonic 2. The drop dash originally from Sonic Mania has been added to Origins so you can use it in all four games.
Sonic Origins contains an anniversary mode, classic mode, boss rush and unlockable mirror mode for all four games separately, and a story mode where you play through all games as Sonic in one cohesive story. Classic mode lets you play the game in its original 4:3 aspect ratio, while anniversary mode is in 16:9.
There are no lives in anniversary or story mode; however, you can collect coins. Coins are the currency of Origins and can be used to retry special stages, or to unlock stuff in the premium contents. (Please note that you may have to purchase the premium fun pack DLC in order to access the premium content. I do not know if that’s true because I pre-ordered the Digital Deluxe edition and got access to both DLC packs.) I do wish there was more content within the main game to unlock in the museum, like more movies and illustrations. But, I’d still say you’re getting more bang for your buck in the entire game.
As said before, Sonic Origins includes a new widescreen remaster of Sonic 3 & Knuckles; however, it should be noted that some of the music has changed due to licensing issues. If you’ve played the Sonic & Knuckles PC Collection back in 1997, you might recognize some of the songs. The replacement songs are a necessary evil that needed to be done. Without them, the game wouldn’t have been remade or included in this compilation.
The Blue Spheres mini game is also back. You can choose to play the original game in 4:3, or the new mode which features green and purple spheres and new levels.
I feel like this needs to be said. Yes the games do have bugs, however to say that Stealth and Headcannon is at fault would be wrong. I recommend you read his tweets about that situation, but he did say that him and his team wanted Origins‘ problems to be addressed. So, I’m gonna be doing my part in that.
I do see problems others ran into. I saw a few that were game breaking. But, the only issues I had were the ones I’ve listed below. Please note that I am playing the Nintendo Switch version and some bugs may differ depending on the console or PC you play on.
- Some of the issues I have are the fact that story mode is not customizable. I can’t toggle the soundtrack for CD, I can’t keep the super peel-out after CD, and I can’t choose what item boxes I want in games. While, yes, you can do those things in anniversary mode using level select, it just feels like a missed opportunity.
- Another issue I found is that in Sonic 1 (using level select) and 2, Tails sometimes doesn’t reappear like he usually does. I also ran into a couple of game crashes when I got the sixth Chaos Emerald at the second act of Spring Yard while trying to complete Sonic 1 using level select and playing as Sonic with Tails following, switch items to S1 & S3 and emerald count changed to seven.
- There seems to be a collision error in Stardust Speedway Act 1 Present where the goal sign is. There’s a floor ramp that leads to a different pathway above just before the goal sign, but it seems to act as a wall unless you spin dash towards it. This level design was there in the original.
- The blue spheres music also doesn’t speed up like it should.
- There also seems to be a collision error in the Sonic 3 slots bonus level with the bumpers and red and white tiles near the rings and slot machine.
- I also couldn’t activate Hyper Sonic in the sand in Sandopolis Act 1 for some reason.
There are some problems that need to be resolved. However, it doesn’t necessarily make Sonic Origins a bad game in my view. They do fundamentally play the same as the original with the mobile remasters’ improvements. Some problems prevent a higher rating but I personally hope they can be patched.