Sonic Mania Shorts [Review]

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Sonic Mania, if you haven’t heard, is the hit Sonic the Hedgehog game that checks off all the right boxes for old-school Sonic fans. It’s nostalgic-inducing fast-paced side scrolling levels are exactly the kind of game that the fans, new and old alike, have wanted for Sonic for years. With the Sonic Mania Plus DLC, introducing fan favorite characters Mighty and Ray, the game has continued to deliver. Along with the game, a few short animation videos were created to help promote the game, and we finally sat down to watch them.

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The shorts are… well, short. And pretty sweet. We found a video that showed all the episodes in one and it was a little over 11 minutes long. So we, of course, watched it all in one sitting.

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Back when I was a kid, I used to have a VHS — remember those? — of a few episodes of The Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog, so seeing that there was a little cartoon to go along with Sonic Mania was a treat. We found ourselves laughing out loud at parts of the animation. There was no voice acting. Rather, the animations were perfectly timed with music and sound effects.

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I’ll admit, I missed hearing their voices a little bit but it was so well done that I don’t mind. The facial expressions through the characters along with the sound effects were spot on. It wasn’t something I was expecting, so it was a pleasant surprise because, yeah, we got some good laughs out of it.

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The animation was smooth and clean, with lots of throw backs to elements of the earlier Sonic games and cartoons. It made me miss the times when I would wake up early Saturday morning for my favorite cartoons. I wouldn’t mind a show starring this version of Sonic and friends, especially Knuckles and his protective nature over the Master Emerald!

Rachel Mii Double Jump
Exactly! I miss watching the old school cartoons and it was great to revisit this case of characters without having them be changed or butchered in any way. The whole animation was light-hearted and funny and I feel as though they captured the classic characters perfectly.

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Considering there is a Sonic the Hedgehog live-action hybrid movie in the works, and I really don’t know how to feel about that just yet, seeing these animations was just refreshing. The animations did their job wonderfully, bringing both excitement and feel-good nostalgia with them to help the hype of Sonic Mania.

Did you watch these shorts? Let us know in the comments below!

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Currently Playing: Sonic Mania & Fire Emblem Warriors

Double Jump Kris MiiTwo “Currently Playing” posts in a row? How about that?

I splurged a little in getting a couple of new games for the rest of this month. A little Sonic the Hedgehog and Fire Emblem seemed to be just what was needed!

I’ll admit, I nearly forgot about Sonic Mania! The game came out last August, and I had been planning on buying it then. However, other games wiggled their way in and considering that Sonic the Hedgehog is a franchise that I haven’t dabbled in as often as I used to. The original Sonic 1, 2, 3, and Sonic and Knuckles games were not part of my collection while growing up. Rather, the 3D games that generally didn’t get great reviews (but had amazing music) were the Sonic games I played and, honestly, enjoyed.

I didn’t get a chance to actually try playing the original Sonic the Hedgehog games until we had gotten Sonic Mega Collection for the GameCube. Even then, however, the GameCube was mostly used for Super Smash Bros. Melee and the Legend of Zelda games. Seeing the few original levels from those games being put into Sonic Mania, however, has given me a load of nostalgia. I’m definitely looking forward to seeing how well the rest of the game plays out!

Considering Fire Emblem Warriors just arrived, I’m not sure how long it’ll be until I get back to Sonic Mania, though… Fire Emblem is a franchise near and dear to my heart, and it is so deliciously fun to mow down enemies in the Warriors installment of the series! I’m not very far into the game just yet, but I don’t think it’ll be a game that will take me long to get through.

Have you played Sonic Mania or Fire Emblem Warriors? What do you think of them?

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Friday Favorites: Sonic the Hedgehog Games

Double Jump Kris MiiSonic the Hedgehog games have had a history of being either really good or really bad. Rather, the earlier games were fantastic, then they fell into a slump with mediocre games. They seem to be trying to climb out of that hole, for Sonic Mania hasn’t done too badly. We shall see how Sonic Forces lives up to the hype when it comes out next month!

Personally, I didn’t really start playing the Sonic the Hedgehog games until the 3D era. With that said, here’s a list of some of the Sonic games that I find to be guilty pleasures of mine.

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Sonic Adventure: DX

Sonic Adventure: DX was released on the GameCube in 1998. Aside from a few forays into the 2D-platform games, Sonic Adventure: DX was one of my first Sonic the Hedgehog games. I was a Sonic fan due to the comics and some of the early cartoons, and I had fun playing as most of the different characters in this game. I remember that the graphics and controls were a little odd at times, but I got through it. It helped that I absolutely fell in love with the music!

Sonic Battle

Sonic Battle was always one of my favorite go-to Advance games. Being able to customize your robot fighter and just spend the story going into battles with various characters made it easy to pick up and play in spurts. That, and Emerl the robot was adorable and fun to play as!

Sonic Adventure 2: Battle

The two opposing sides of this game actually makes the story a bit tedious, to be honest, with not a lot of variety between the Hero and the Dark sides of the game. However, the two-player mode and the Chao Gardens made up for it, in my opinion. Rachel and I always had a blast playing two-player mode, and we each have our little Chao Gardens saved on separate memory cards on the GameCube!

What are your favorite Sonic the Hedgehog video games? Have you played Sonic Mania? Are you looking forward to Sonic Forces?

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Friday Favorites: Games on Steam

Double Jump Kris MiiTGIF!

Steam is an awesome digital gaming platform, and Rachel and I have been trying to get more use out of it lately. We have a handful of games on the platform that we’re trying to give more love during our down times. Below are a few of the games that are on our “to-be played more” Steam list.

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Player Unknown Battlegrounds

I do not play shooter games. Like, at all. It just wasn’t a genre that I grew up with. Nintendo, with most of its kid- and family-friendly games, didn’t have too many games in that genre available as I started gaming. However, Rachel and I found out about Player Unknown Battlegrounds through a few of our favorite YouTubers, and the fast-paced, tense, kill-or-be-killed situation looks like so much fun!

Dream Daddy

Dream Daddy is a dating sim game that is unique in so many ways. We were a bit perplexed at first when we heard that the main premise is a single dad dating other single dads, but only because it’s not a typical dating sim scenario. Developed by Game Grumps, another YouTube channel that we occasionally watch, we are in love with the writing, the graphics, the music, and the characters themselves. It also just gives me warm and fuzzy feelings to see the inclusiveness and canon gay and transgender characters in the game — those representations are so important!

Sonic Mania

The Sonic the Hedgehog franchise is one that I’ve kind of fallen out of lately. However, with Sonic Mania, it seems to be reviving and I’m definitely interested in trying out the game. The trailers themselves seem so nostalgic for the old-school Sonic games that I’m eager to see what Sonic Mania will bring to the franchise.

Lumo

A game Rachel discovered fairly recently, Lumo is a puzzle, isometric adventure game. Featuring a little wizard-looking character, you make your way out of rooms full of puzzles. The music and graphics look utterly charming, and it seems casual enough to do a couple of rooms at a time.

What are your favorite games on Steam?

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