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Sonic Colours Wii review

The best 3D Sonic game for a decade

Sonic Colours provides something Sonic fans have been crying out for: a 3D game that isn't let down by an annoying gimmick.

The Colours storyline is typically mindless Sonic stuff. Eggman builds an intergalactic theme park. Sonic investigates and discovers he's using Wisps, space creatures with nifty powers, to carry out evil deeds.

At first glance, the space theme makes the structure seem like a tip of the hat to Super Mario Galaxy, when it actually has far more in common with the New Super Mario Bros. games. Each of the themed worlds on offer has seven or eight levels, which adds up to an impressive 60-odd stages. These vary greatly in length, from quickfire rounds lasting less than a minute to four- or five-minute epics on a similar scale to the daylight levels in Sonic Unleashed.

Click to view larger image
Indeed Sonic Colours recalls those daylight levels, from the pace and swooping camera angles to the switches from 2D to 3D, the need to slide under low gaps and the ability to give Sonic a ridiculous speed boost by holding down the B button.

Sonic Colours still has a gimmick, it's just that it doesn't ruin things this time. We're talking about the Wisps, Sonic's new power-ups. Each one gives Sonic a different power to use for a limited time. For example, the yellow Wisp turns him into a drill - handy for burrowing into the ground - while dark blue Wisps turn special dark-blue rings into blocks and vice versa, much like a P-switch does in New Super Mario Bros.

Will O' The Wisps

Enjoyment levels can fluctuate where the Wisps are concerned, however. Some, such as the yellow drill, are great fun. You'll have a blast manoeuvring Sonic through the dirt and underground passages at stupidly fast speeds. Others, such as the light-blue Wisps that transform Sonic into a laser, aren't implemented quite so well. But none are so badly-executed as to ruin the game and, crucially, they're rarely - if ever - essential to finish a level: you can completely ignore them if you want to.

As for the controls, they're more or less the same as in Sonic Unleashed. Running using the Nunchuk's analogue stick is really satisfying, and holding B to boost your speed while pressing A to jump is perfectly intuitive. Our only niggle is the way flicking the Remote activates the Wisp powers, although the game does support the Classic Controller, Classic Controller Pro and the good old GameCube controller.

Click to view larger image

Chronic Colours

It's not all good news. Some of the levels are poorly designed and contradict the core values that make a Sonic game fun. Like the level that has you standing on numerous switches to make a large platform inch its way s-l-o-w-l-y upwards. Sonic isn't really supposed to do things slowly, and when he does it shouldn't drag on for the best part of a whole level.

The stages in Colours aren't quite as enjoyable to race through as the likes of Spagonia and Apotos were in Sonic Unleashed but there are plenty of highlights, such as dashing through a big pile of popcorn and seeing it blast all over the place.

Multiplayer is another sore point. The bizarre two-player mode consists of a series of side-scrolling levels inside a giant arcade game. The result is a bit of a mess and nowhere near as fun as the multiplayer elements in New Super Mario Bros. Wii. So these levels aren't quite on a par with best of Unleashed, but we're very happy with lots of very good stages, rather than a few great ones mixed in with that Werehog rubbish.

Colours hits the jackpot for Sonic fans. It's one of his best 3D outings since the Dreamcast days.

This is an edited version of a review that appears in the December of Official Nintendo Magazine. For more in-depth analysis, screenshots and boxouts buy the magazine here.

Comments

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  1. Sonic_Freak Thursday 11th Nov 2010 at 15:07

    Great review. Read it in the mag too. So awesome to see Sonic score high with critics again. Really looking forward to getting this game tomorrow.

  2. megaman16 Thursday 11th Nov 2010 at 15:29

    good review :D

  3. random_guy_14 Thursday 11th Nov 2010 at 15:41

    I love how you compare Sonic games to Mario games in almost every review of a new Sonic game, even when it's not necessary. It's like as if we travelled back to the 90s.

  4. dm_1782 Thursday 11th Nov 2010 at 15:54

    I love how you compare Sonic games to Mario games in almost every review of a new Sonic game, even when it's not necessary. It's like as if we travelled back to the 90s.

    It has to be done they are age old rivals and so it shall always be. :P
    However unfortunately for Sonic, Mario always kicks his ass.

  5. chaz 1805 Thursday 11th Nov 2010 at 16:15

    good review apart that they did not mention that MASSIVE SPOILER!!!!


    Please will you either put that in a spoiler box, or edit it out of your post, as I'm sure that a lot of people don't want the biggest suprise in the game ruined for them.

    Idiot :x :x

  6. NintendoALLSTAR Thursday 11th Nov 2010 at 16:30

    Some of the levels are poorly designed and contradict the core values that make a Sonic game fun. Like the level that has you standing on numerous switches to make a large platform inch its way s-l-o-w-l-y upwards. Sonic isn't really supposed to do things slowly


    Someone else who either never played the classic Sonic titles, or has had their memory swiped of the hedgehog's golden days. Sorry, it's just that people need to remember/realise/understand that Sonic wasn't only about speed. He had many moments where things slowed down; sometimes considerably.

  7. blublur101 Thursday 11th Nov 2010 at 16:36

    However unfortunately for Sonic, Mario always kicks his ass.


    take a look at my avatar, name and signature and you'll get a good idea of how i reacted when i read that.

    anyways, good review. although you could've backed up some of your points there.

  8. MB-Poke-Fan Thursday 11th Nov 2010 at 17:30

    Finally, a decent Sonic game I can get my teeth into. I can't wait for this to grace my wii. I just hope my plasma TV doesn't explode from the epicness.

  9. ShadowofPain Thursday 11th Nov 2010 at 17:32

    good review apart that FAT SPOILER

    Dude, this review was done in this month's mag, which was published on October 28th. This isn't even the final build of the game that they are reviewing (there is no Asteroid Coaster or Frenzy Wisp). That news was only found out 1 or 2 days ago I believe.

    Not to mention that why would they include a detail that big in the review for the game? It's such a huge spoiler that it wouldn't make sense to include it. It would be like them saying in their NSMB Wii review, "once you collect all the Star Coins you unlock World 9".

    Anyways, to my main point, this wasn't a particularly well written review ONM. It's not the score I'm annoyed about, but the fact that you didn't support ANYTHING you said. Why is the multiplayer bad? Why do you think the Unleashed days levels are better? The cons (heck even the pros) of the game were almost never justified in the review.

    Bit of a shame really, since Chris is actually my fave reviewer normally...

  10. FiveThirteen Thursday 11th Nov 2010 at 17:33

    Got home to find my preorder for this game has arrived one day early! Is that even legal? Anyways, super happy and I can't wait to play it later, but I have to do some work on my college assignment first :(

    I preordered from GAME by the way, and having never preordered a game before, I have no frame of reference, but I highly reccomend them, as I got the game one day early and their customer service was great (I was sent emails confirming my preorder, telling me they were getting ready to send it to me, and finally one to say the game was on its way).

    Sorry if that sounded too much like advertising...

  11. Gameking53 Thursday 11th Nov 2010 at 17:38

    If you preorder from GAME you always get it a day early and for Ł10 less than in the shops :D

  12. megaman16 Thursday 11th Nov 2010 at 17:39

    good review apart that they did not mention that MASSIVE SPOILER!!!!


    Please will you either put that in a spoiler box, or edit it out of your post, as I'm sure that a lot of people don't want the biggest suprise in the game ruined for them.

    Idiot :x :x


    sorry for that but i have now edited it

    also never call people you dont know idiots

  13. Giga Thursday 11th Nov 2010 at 17:49

    Got home to find my preorder for this game has arrived one day early! Is that even legal?


    LOL

  14. chaz 1805 Thursday 11th Nov 2010 at 17:50

    good review apart that they did not mention that MASSIVE SPOILER!!!!


    Please will you either put that in a spoiler box, or edit it out of your post, as I'm sure that a lot of people don't want the biggest suprise in the game ruined for them.

    Idiot :x :x


    sorry for that but i have now edited it

    also never call people you dont know idiots

    Yeah sorry about that, it's just it really annoys me when people ruin games like that. So thanks a bunch for listening, you are no longer an idiot, you are now dubbed awesome!!

    Anyway, tomorrow is my birthday, so I'll be getting this straight after school tomorrow, I can't wait!

  15. megaman16 Thursday 11th Nov 2010 at 17:54

    good review apart that they did not mention that MASSIVE SPOILER!!!!


    Please will you either put that in a spoiler box, or edit it out of your post, as I'm sure that a lot of people don't want the biggest suprise in the game ruined for them.

    Idiot :x :x


    sorry for that but i have now edited it

    also never call people you dont know idiots

    Yeah sorry about that, it's just it really annoys me when people ruin games like that. So thanks a bunch for listening, you are no longer an idiot, you are now dubbed awesome!!

    Anyway, tomorrow is my birthday, so I'll be getting this straight after school tomorrow, I can't wait!

    well now thats over happy birthday enjoy it

    and how old will you be?

  16. choclate-milk Thursday 11th Nov 2010 at 19:20

    The best 3D Sonic game for a decade?

    Due to the fact that Sonic Adventure 2 was released in 2001, I am going to have to call your bluff, good sir.

    And I will have at anyone who disagrees in a duel of fisticuffs.

  17. Stulaw Thursday 11th Nov 2010 at 19:32

    good review apart that FAT SPOILER

    Dude, this review was done in this month's mag, which was published on October 28th. This isn't even the final build of the game that they are reviewing (there is no Asteroid Coaster or Frenzy Wisp). That news was only found out 1 or 2 days ago I believe.

    Most reviewers get the final build of the game to review before release, you do know that the games are finished atleast a month before release don't you? If reviewers didn't review the real thing, then it wouldn't be a good review.

    Of which this is a great review, I'm looking forward to getting this for christmas.

  18. shadow663 Thursday 11th Nov 2010 at 19:53

    Got it today. completion time 5 hours, in one playthrough. pretty good game. definatly has replay value.
    sonic is on the up and up

  19. ShadowofPain Thursday 11th Nov 2010 at 19:59

    good review apart that FAT SPOILER

    Dude, this review was done in this month's mag, which was published on October 28th. This isn't even the final build of the game that they are reviewing (there is no Asteroid Coaster or Frenzy Wisp). That news was only found out 1 or 2 days ago I believe.

    Most reviewers get the final build of the game to review before release, you do know that the games are finished atleast a month before release don't you? If reviewers didn't review the real thing, then it wouldn't be a good review.

    Of which this is a great review, I'm looking forward to getting this for christmas.

    Whilst that's true to an extent, the earliest reviewers (like ONM for this game) get a different "review build" of the game. This one generally is similar to the very final build, just minus a few things (like I said, Asteroid Coaster, Frenzy Wisp etc)

  20. random_guy_14 Thursday 11th Nov 2010 at 20:04

    I love how you compare Sonic games to Mario games in almost every review of a new Sonic game, even when it's not necessary. It's like as if we travelled back to the 90s.

    It has to be done they are age old rivals and so it shall always be. :P
    However unfortunately for Sonic, Mario always kicks his ass.

    Yeah, but Sonic's games have a different style to Mario's. It's like when ONM compared Street Fighter to Punch-Out!! - completely pointless and just implies that they're fanboys.

  21. fisher2007 Thursday 11th Nov 2010 at 22:43

    Great review. Read it in the mag too. So awesome to see Sonic score high with critics again.

    I hope sega make more good sonic games like this.

  22. ChrisONM Thursday 11th Nov 2010 at 23:59

    good review apart that FAT SPOILER

    Dude, this review was done in this month's mag, which was published on October 28th. This isn't even the final build of the game that they are reviewing (there is no Asteroid Coaster or Frenzy Wisp). That news was only found out 1 or 2 days ago I believe.

    Most reviewers get the final build of the game to review before release, you do know that the games are finished atleast a month before release don't you? If reviewers didn't review the real thing, then it wouldn't be a good review.

    Of which this is a great review, I'm looking forward to getting this for christmas.

    Whilst that's true to an extent, the earliest reviewers (like ONM for this game) get a different "review build" of the game. This one generally is similar to the very final build, just minus a few things (like I said, Asteroid Coaster, Frenzy Wisp etc)


    I'm not sure where you get your information from but it's not true in this case, I'm afraid. The review builds we get for games are identical to the finished copies of the game. That's why they're review builds, because they let us review the whole game, not just a chunk of it.

    If we weren't able to complete the whole game because parts of it were missing, it wouldn't be a review build. It would be preview build, and we wouldn't have reviewed it as a result. If I'm not playing the whole game, then my review can't be an honest, full one.

    So to clarify: review build = final build.

    Anyways, to my main point, this wasn't a particularly well written review ONM. It's not the score I'm annoyed about, but the fact that you didn't support ANYTHING you said. Why is the multiplayer bad? Why do you think the Unleashed days levels are better? The cons (heck even the pros) of the game were almost never justified in the review.

    Bit of a shame really, since Chris is actually my fave reviewer normally...


    Don't forget this is a shorter version of the review. The full review in issue 62 of the magazine addresses all these points fully.

    Someone else who either never played the classic Sonic titles, or has had their memory swiped of the hedgehog's golden days. Sorry, it's just that people need to remember/realise/understand that Sonic wasn't only about speed. He had many moments where things slowed down; sometimes considerably.


    I played the old Mega Drive games to death, and I do remember the good old days very well indeed. I know there were times in the past when Sonic moved slowly, but those poits were easily the worst parts of the games in my opinion. I thought pushing blocks in the Marble Zone was incredibly boring, as was travelling underwater in the Labyrinth Zone.

    Note that I never said "Sonic never used to do things slowly", I said "Sonic isn't really supposed to do things slowly". That goes for the original games too in my opinion.

  23. Slayso Friday 12th Nov 2010 at 00:42

    However unfortunately for Sonic, Mario always kicks his ass.


    take a look at my avatar, name and signature and you'll get a good idea of how i reacted when i read that.

    Kinda true though isn't it?

  24. imbusydoctorwho Friday 12th Nov 2010 at 08:09

    Gametrailers gave this only 6.4
    I might get this for crimbo :wink:

  25. choclate-milk Friday 12th Nov 2010 at 12:16

    However unfortunately for Sonic, Mario always kicks his ass.


    take a look at my avatar, name and signature and you'll get a good idea of how i reacted when i read that.

    Kinda true though isn't it?


    Maybe so, but I'm sticking by the Blue Blur all the way.

    Despite how much some of his games may suck.

  26. imbusydoctorwho Friday 12th Nov 2010 at 13:17

    However unfortunately for Sonic, Mario always kicks his ass.


    take a look at my avatar, name and signature and you'll get a good idea of how i reacted when i read that.

    Kinda true though isn't it?

    They are both great franchises.
    I like Mario cause he has been in so many great games
    like galaxy and 64.
    But I like sonic for his speed.


    There is only one way to find out

    FIGHT
    :lol:

  27. Jacen Friday 12th Nov 2010 at 20:10

    Oh yes. I'm getting this one for Christmas. Welcome back Sonic!

  28. Yirba Friday 12th Nov 2010 at 22:46

    I played the old Mega Drive games to death, and I do remember the good old days very well indeed. I know there were times in the past when Sonic moved slowly, but those poits were easily the worst parts of the games in my opinion. I thought pushing blocks in the Marble Zone was incredibly boring, as was travelling underwater in the Labyrinth Zone.

    Note that I never said "Sonic never used to do things slowly", I said "Sonic isn't really supposed to do things slowly". That goes for the original games too in my opinion.

    Hang on... aren't you the one who said that Sonic is not all about speed, that momentum is extremely important and something that has been unfortunately
    lacking in recent games?

  29. spambot404 Saturday 13th Nov 2010 at 00:00

    Good to see that Sonic is continuing his recent return to form. :D
    Although, one thing in the review that I think is a bit of a joke, is the way it says its not as good as adventure.

    Adventure was a good enough game, but people really need to take off the flower-tinted spectacles and realize that its not half as good as they remember it to be. IGN pointed this out recently (Adventure got 3.5 while Colours got 8.5).

    And anyway,
    Sonic without fishing> Sonic with fishing.

  30. ChrisONM Saturday 13th Nov 2010 at 15:26

    I played the old Mega Drive games to death, and I do remember the good old days very well indeed. I know there were times in the past when Sonic moved slowly, but those poits were easily the worst parts of the games in my opinion. I thought pushing blocks in the Marble Zone was incredibly boring, as was travelling underwater in the Labyrinth Zone.

    Note that I never said "Sonic never used to do things slowly", I said "Sonic isn't really supposed to do things slowly". That goes for the original games too in my opinion.

    Hang on... aren't you the one who said that Sonic is not all about speed, that momentum is extremely important and something that has been unfortunately
    lacking in recent games?


    Yes, and I stand by that. What I meant was that in most modern Sonic games (Sonic Heroes, Sonic 360 etc), Sonic moves very quickly almost as soon as you move the stick. What made the original games fun (in my opinion) was that Sonic started quite slowly and you had to build momentum in order to gain a high speed. Sonic games are about speed, of course they are, but in the older games the player had to earn that speed.

    The examples I gave above (pushing blocks in the Marble Zone, running underwater) were annoying moments because they never ended with Sonic gaining speed.

  31. Mario1980 Saturday 13th Nov 2010 at 18:26

    I wish there was a guide book for this game as I would buy it....

  32. Yirba Monday 15th Nov 2010 at 19:22

    Yes, and I stand by that. What I meant was that in most modern Sonic games (Sonic Heroes, Sonic 360 etc), Sonic moves very quickly almost as soon as you move the stick. What made the original games fun (in my opinion) was that Sonic started quite slowly and you had to build momentum in order to gain a high speed. Sonic games are about speed, of course they are, but in the older games the player had to earn that speed.

    The examples I gave above (pushing blocks in the Marble Zone, running underwater) were annoying moments because they never ended with Sonic gaining speed.

    Ah, I see what you mean. Yeah, I agree. There were some moments that were kinda slow and stayed slow. I never liked the underwater sections. Aquatic Ruins... Hydrocity... *shudder* Even falling into the oil in the Chemical Plant was a pain.

  33. BlueLink3411 Thursday 18th Nov 2010 at 16:19
  34. FiveThirteen Saturday 20th Nov 2010 at 12:37

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PrmdU6x6Nco&feature=sub
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5vNpECUemmE
    Enough reason to get the game.

    Just warning people that the second link is the final boss music. I closed it as soon as I saw that so i only heard the first second. I didn't want it spoiled for me. You should say if you're posting spoilers BlueLink!

  35. Segafan134 Tuesday 5th Jul 2011 at 11:09

    Sonic Colours beats both sonic and the black knight and sonic unleashed hands down

  36. Phantom George Sunday 20th May 2012 at 08:49

    This is Best sonic game no.1!!!!!In 2 is Cronicles.The story,the theme!!!"Im gonna reach for the stars..."Can you play as Tails though? :?:

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