Initial release date: November 11, 2010
Platforms: Nintendo Switch, Wii, Nintendo DS, PlayStation 4, MORE
Developers: Sonic Team, Dimps, Blind Squirrel Games
Composers: Tomoya Ohtani, Kenichi Tokoi
Engine: Godot, PhysX
Designers: Takashi Iizuka, Morio Kishimoto
Mode: Multiplayer video game
"Review Copy Provided By Sega"
Sonic, as a franchise, has made a resounding comeback in the gaming world with the recent releases of Sonic Mania, Sonic Origins, and Sonic Frontiers. Sega has been excelling in reviving the popularity of the blue blur, particularly with the reissue of Sonic Colors Ultimate, previously a Wii exclusive game that was part of the "Boost" era of Sonic games, now available on all modern consoles. However, the question of whether the game stands the test of time as an equally amazing experience as it was a decade or two years ago, or if it is an outdated relic of the past, still remains to be answered.
Dr. Eggman decides to create an amusement park and claims to have changed his ways, but Sonic is skeptical and decides to investigate along with Tails. They discover that Dr. Eggman is harnessing the powers of an alien race known as the Whisps to carry out his malevolent plan of world domination.
The gameplay in Sonic Colors Ultimate is not solely about speed, but also includes platforming, exploration, and the opportunity to be inventive in how each level is navigated. While you can rush through a level and complete it in just a minute, doing so would mean missing out on a lot. Each level offers a set number of hidden secrets and collectibles, providing the game with plenty of replay value, particularly as you acquire more and more Wisps power-ups.
Sonic Colors Ultimate offers the classic Sonic gameplay elements, including running, jumping, boost/spin dash, speed ramps, and ring collection. However, what distinguishes this entry is the Wisps, which are small aliens that come in a range of colors and provide Sonic with different power-ups. These power-ups enable him to move at the speed of light, fly temporarily, drill into the ground, and more. The game features nine different Wisps, and as you progress through the levels, you will unlock more Wisps, allowing you to revisit earlier areas and explore alternative routes that were previously inaccessible.
Rival Rush is a new mode in which you compete against Metal Sonic, and winning rewards you with some exciting unlockables. Additionally, the game offers cosmetic customization options such as adding special effects from the Sonic movie, choosing different colors for your gloves, and selecting various designs for Sonic's shoes. You can even give Sonic an aura! Sonic Colors Ultimate does an exceptional job of updating a classic game from the past decade with improved controls and bringing it to the modern era.
The graphics in Sonic Colors Ultimate look great, with improved lighting effects, colors, and added details to the character models and backgrounds. The removal of jaggies and pixelation further enhances the visual experience. The game runs smoothly on PC, with support for 4K resolutions and ultrawide monitor displays. On the Steam Deck, the game runs at 720p and 60fps, with occasional stutters, but overall performs well. The game can also run at 1080p and 60fps on the Deck. Battery life on deck nets you about 2 and a half hours with default settings.
The improved graphics and smooth performance of Sonic Colors Ultimate give the classic game a fresh new feel. It's a shame that the Switch version doesn't perform as well, but it's become an accepted issue for multiplatform ports on the platform.
The soundtrack of Sonic Colors, especially the opening theme "Reach for the Stars," has always been one of the best in the franchise. Each level has a unique theme that fits perfectly with its motif. The Ultimate Edition features some remixed tracks from the original game, with some better than others.
The voice acting in the game has always been a highlight, with Roger Craig Smith doing an excellent job as Sonic. His one-liners and snark are superb, and the game's overall emphasis on humor is exceptional, especially in the interactions with Eggman and his lackeys.
Sonic Colors was one of the best games of 2010 and one of the best Sonic games in a period dominated by mediocre titles. It was also one of the best games on the Wii during a time when the console was plagued with shovelware. Sonic Colors Ultimate brings this modern classic to modern consoles and PC, revamping the controls and graphics and adding enough new features to make it the definitive way to play the game. If you haven't played Sonic Colors before, the Ultimate Edition is a game you definitely don't want to miss out on!