Sonic Rush

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Sonic Rush
Sonic Rush Coverart.png
North American cover
Developer(s) Sonic Team, Dimps
Publisher(s) Sega
Director(s) Akinori Nishiyama
Producer(s) Yuji Naka
Kouichi Sakita
Artist(s) Yuji Uekawa
Kazuhiko Yamamoto
Composer(s) Hideki Naganuma
Series Sonic the Hedgehog
Platform(s) Nintendo DS
Release date(s)
  • NA November 15, 2005
  • PAL November 18, 2005
  • JP November 23, 2005
Genre(s) Platform, action
Mode(s) Single-player, two-player

Sonic Rush (ソニック・ラッシュ Sonikku Rasshu?)[1] is a 2005 platform handheld video game developed by Sonic Team and Dimps exclusively for the Nintendo DS as part of Sega's Sonic the Hedgehog series. It was released on November 15, 2005 in North America, November 18 in the PAL region, and November 23 in Japan. It is a 2D platform game, but Sonic's and Blaze's sprites are rendered in 3D, creating a 2.5D effect. Boss battles, along with a Sonic-exclusive special stage, are entirely 3D. The game's storyline follows the intertwining adventures of a new character, Blaze the Cat, and the series' main character, Sonic the Hedgehog. They respectively battle Doctor Eggman and his doppelgänger Eggman Nega at certain points throughout the game. This is a Rumble Pak game in the Sonic the Hedgehog series.

The game was announced under the working title Sonic DS at Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) 2004, and under Sonic Rush at E3 2005. The game's 2.5D format was based on Sonic Team's idea to combine elements from 2D and 3D games in the series. Upon release, Sonic Rush was positively received by critics, with praise stemming from the game's music and similarity to older games in the series and criticism stemming from its overall quickness. A sequel, Sonic Rush Adventure, was later created and released in 2007.

Gameplay[edit]

Blaze runs through a loop in an early level of the game, demonstrating the dual-screen feature.

Sonic Rush is a 2D platform game, similar to earlier games in the series as well as later ones like Sonic Advance. The player controls either Sonic the Hedgehog or Blaze the Cat, who differ in terms of special abilities.[2] In the tradition of past Sonic games, gameplay consists of moving quickly through levels, collecting rings and defeating enemies.[3][4][5] The player collects rings as a form of health; when they are attacked by an enemy, their rings bounce in all directions. If they are hit by an enemy and have no rings, they lose a life. Both of the DS's screens are used to display the play area, with the player's character moving between them as necessary.[3][6] Levels in the game are divided into "zones", each consisting of two acts of normal gameplay then a 3D boss battle. The course of the game differs depending on whether Sonic or Blaze is chosen;[7] the seven zones are the same, but are accessed in different orders.[2] During boss battles, Blaze fights Doctor Eggman[8] and Sonic fights an Eggman doppelgänger called Eggman Nega.[6][9] As the characters' stories progress, they meet each other several times and unite in the final zone that comes after the seventh.[7] The game features a special stages can access via certain handles in order to obtain the Chaos Emeralds. These Special Stages resemble those of Sonic the Hedgehog 2 and utilises the DS' stylus controls.[10] Blaze, on the other hand, can't enter special stages as she earns Sol Emeralds throughout her story. When the player completes both Sonic and Blaze's stories and collect all the Chaos Emeralds, they can access a final story.

New features include a grading system that grades the player based on the time it takes for them to complete the level; they can return to levels later to try for a higher grade.[6] There is a point system based on the one in Sonic Advance 2 but displaying points in multiple categories. There is also a "Tension Gauge" on the left side of the screen which is filled by doing tricks and defeating enemies.[2] The energy it generates allows the player to use boosts of speed while moving;[3] defeating enemies,[2][4] moving through the level more quickly which results in more points and a higher grade, and when playing as Sonic, accessing the special stage.[3] Although the game is primarily two-dimensional, there are three-dimensional elements which create a 2.5D effect. For the first time in the series, Sonic and Blaze's sprites are rendered in 3D.[2] The game's boss battles are 3D.

Sonic fights one of the game's bosses, the Egg Scarab. Boss battles are rendered in 3D.

Sonic Rush has a two-player mode in which Sonic and Blaze race to the end of a chosen level from the game. There is also a feature in which players who own the game can send a demo of the game to other Nintendo DS users.[3][7]

Plot[edit]

Blaze the Cat lands somehow in Sonic's world (it is unknown where she came from). Her world had seven Sol Emeralds—similar to the Chaos Emeralds—but they were stolen by Doctor Eggman.[2] She then makes it her goal to retrieve them; this is where Sonic meets her. While she is searching for the Sol Emeralds, Sonic is searching for the Chaos Emeralds.[7] Blaze meets Cream the Rabbit, and is surprised by Cream's politeness. Meanwhile, Miles "Tails" Prower learns that Blaze's world and Sonic's are beginning to merge somehow.[2] Sonic begins to grow suspicious of Blaze and, along with Tails, looks for her. Soon, Sonic and Tails find Blaze and Cream. Sonic questions Blaze about her nature, but she refuses to give any information and leaves with Cream. Sonic follows her, and when he meets her on Eggman Nega's base, it is revealed that Eggman and Eggman Nega are working together to collect both the Chaos Emeralds and the Sol Emeralds. Blaze declares that she is the only one who can save their worlds, so Sonic should not help her. When he refuses to back down, she turns on him and fights him. However, Sonic wins the fight, and Blaze realizes the error of her ways.

Suddenly, Eggman kidnaps Cream, and Blaze goes after him while Sonic takes on Nega. Sonic collects the last of the seven Chaos Emeralds; and meets Blaze, who has failed to protect the Sol Emeralds. Sonic and his friends help Blaze realize the meaning of friendship, and she turns into Burning Blaze—apparently her answer to Sonic's Super Sonic form—while Sonic turns into Super Sonic. They fight Eggman and Eggman Nega and defeat them. The two worlds are restored, forcing Blaze into her own world. As she flies there, she realizes that she truly understands her powers. Later, on Sonic's planet, Cream is crying because she misses Blaze, but Sonic tells her that Blaze promised to return someday.

Development[edit]

Sonic Rush was developed by Sonic Team and Dimps, and published by Sega.[3] Yuji Naka, Sega's executive managing director, announced the game at Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) 2004, along with Project Rub.[11] A demo of the newly titled Sonic Rush was featured at E3 2005,[12] and won video game publication IGN's "Biggest Surprise" award.[13] Blaze the Cat, a new character, was revealed at Tokyo Game Show (TGS) 2005.[12] The game's 2.5D format was based on Sonic Team's idea to combine elements from 2D and 3D games in the series. Director Akinori Nishiyama stated in a September 2005 interview with GameSpot that Sonic Team "wanted to keep the elements from 2D, yet still explore some of the new elements from 3D."[7] At TGS 2005, he stated that while working on Sonic Advance 3, he realized that the series was becoming more complicated, opting for a "fast, dynamic action" approach to the next title in the series.[14] This is the first Sonic handheld game to feature the 4Kids actors who previously did voice-work for the anime Sonic X.

Music[edit]

The music of Sonic Rush was written by acclaimed composer Hideki Naganuma. It was released in Japan as a CD, SONIC RUSH Original Groove Rush, on November 23, 2005 through Wavemaster Studios. The CD has 45 tracks, seven of which are digital remixes rather than master tracks.

Reception[edit]

Reception
Aggregate scores
Aggregator Score
GameRankings 83%[17]
Metacritic 82%[16]
Review scores
Publication Score
1UP.com B+[15]
GamePro 3.5/5 stars[6]
GameSpot 8.2/10[2]
GameSpy 3.5/5 stars[4]
IGN 9/10[3]
Nintendo Power 9.0[10]

Sonic Rush was released on November 15, 2005 in North America; November 18 in Europe; and November 23 in Japan.[1] It was the ninth best-selling DS game of December 2006.[18] It sold approximately 250,000 copies in Europe, making it Sega's fourth best-selling game during the third quarter of its fiscal year ending March 2007.[19]

The game was released to mostly positive reviews, with a Game Rankings score of 83%[17] and a Metacritic score of 82%.[16] Critics praised the game for its usage of elements from older Sonic games. GameSpot, IGN, and Nintendo Power compared the game to older games in the series, specifically those on the Sega Genesis.[2][3][10] GameSpy staff writer Greg Sewart offered a similar opinion, also praising the game for its "gorgeous graphics".[4] The game's overall quickness was not as well received. GameSpy's Greg Sewart, although giving a mostly positive review, complained that "it's so fast you almost can't tell what's going on most of the time."[4] 1UP.com and GamePro thought similarly.[6][15] The game's music was well-received, called "bright [and] buoyant" by 1UP.com and compared to that of Jet Set Radio by GameSpot.[2] GameSpy called the music "all very fitting and very catchy", noting its use of sampling and unconventional structure.[15]

In 2008, Sonic Rush was listed at #17 in IGN's list of the top 25 DS games.[5] On September 11, 2009, it was listed as one of the "cheers" on IGN's "Cheers & Tears" list of action games for the DS.[20]

Legacy[edit]

The game introduced two new characters: Blaze the Cat and Eggman Nega. Both characters went on to appear in other games in the Sonic series.

To commemorate Sonic's 20th anniversary, Sonic Generations includes levels and gameplay aspects from past games in the series. The "Water Palace" stage of this game is a returning stage for the Nintendo 3DS version.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "Related Games". GameSpot. Retrieved March 31, 2010. 
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i j Gerstmann, Jeff (November 14, 2005). "Sonic Rush for DS Review - DS Sonic Rush Review". GameSpot. Retrieved February 20, 2009. 
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h Harris, Craig (November 11, 2005). "IGN: Sonic Rush Review". IGN.com. Retrieved February 19, 2009. 
  4. ^ a b c d e Sewart, Greg (November 15, 2005). "GameSpy: Sonic Rush Review". GameSpy. Retrieved February 20, 2009. 
  5. ^ a b "IGN: The Top 25 Nintendo DS Games". IGN. October 24, 2008. Retrieved March 3, 2009. 
  6. ^ a b c d e Ouroboros (November 17, 2005). "Review : Sonic Rush (DS) - from GamePro.com". Archived from the original on 2011-06-07. Retrieved February 26, 2009. 
  7. ^ a b c d e "GameSpot Video: Sonic Rush Developer Interview 1". September 12, 2005. Retrieved February 21, 2009. 
  8. ^ Sonic Team. Sonic Rush. "Eggman: I won't forget this! Blaze: Wait, Eggman!" 
  9. ^ Sonic Team. Sonic Rush. "Eggman Nega: I won't forget this! Sonic: Wait, Eggman!" 
  10. ^ a b c Thomason, Steve (January 2006). Nintendo Power (199): 105. 
  11. ^ Adams, David (May 11, 2004). "E3 2004: SEGA Announces DS Titles". IGN. Retrieved December 3, 2009. 
  12. ^ a b Gerstmann, Jeff (September 18, 2005). "TGS 2005: Sonic Rush Hands-On". GameSpot. Retrieved December 3, 2005. 
  13. ^ Harris, Craig (May 27, 2005). "DS Best of E3 2005 Awards". IGN. Retrieved December 3, 2009. 
  14. ^ Nintendo Power (V198): 17. December 2005. 
  15. ^ a b c "Sonic Rush Nintendo DS Review Index, Sonic Rush Reviews". 1UP.com. November 16, 2005. Retrieved April 13, 2008. 
  16. ^ a b "Sonic Rush (ds: 2005): Reviews:". Metacritic. Retrieved April 13, 2008. 
  17. ^ a b "Sonic Rush Reviews". Game Rankings. Retrieved April 13, 2008. 
  18. ^ Nintendo Power (210): 18. December 2006. 
  19. ^ "Fiscal Year Ending March 2007 3rd Quarter Results" (Portable Document Format). Sega Sammy Holdings. February 7, 2007. p. 16. Retrieved December 29, 2009. [dead link]
  20. ^ Thomas, Lucas M. (September 11, 2009). "Cheers & Tears: DS Action Games". IGN. Retrieved December 23, 2009. 

External links[edit]