Sonic is one of the most iconic figures in video game history, and he was Sega's answer to Mario. Sonic has undergone many iterations, and is still thriving today. With Sonic Forces and Sonic Mania looming on the horizon, we think it's a good time to list the best Sonic games so far. We know there are plenty of bad Sonic games out there too, poor Sonic has had sort of a bumpy road. Though Sonic has hit a few speed-bumps along the road to success, his good games keep him running. He's been in platforming games, fighting games, racing games, a pinball machine fortress, and he's even been a “werehog”.
Sonic is known around the world and is so popular he's even spawned multiple TV shows. Fans of Sonic the Hedgehog are everywhere, and sometimes can be the quintessential definition of fanatical. Sonic is well loved. We think Sonic is cool too, he's all for saving the animals from the diabolical “Eggman”! Below are the top 10 Sonic games to date, which we think anyone could have a good time with.
10. Sonic Spinball
- System/Platform: Game Gear, Genesis, IOS (Iphone/Ipad), PC, Sega Master System, Windows Mobile
- Publisher: Majesco Games, Sega, Tec Toy, EA Mobile
- Developer: Sega interActive, Sega Technical Institute, Sega, EA Mobile
- Release Date: Nov. 14, 1993
Back in the days of the original 90's Sonic Saturday morning TV show, there was one Sonic game that featured cameos of a few characters from it (Sonic Spinball). Dr. Robotnik has captured the chaos emeralds, and it's up to the player to take them back. Sonic will spin through a pinball machine fortress, and even enter special stages to save his captured friends. Steal the chaos emeralds back, and destroy the pinball fortress! This game is now available for many platforms including the PC.
This is one pinball game that allows you to control the ball in mid-air (the ball is Sonic). Some people might remember the “Casino Night Zone” from Sonic 2, and Sega decided to make an entire game from it. Sonic Spinball is a Sonic game at heart, and even has a few platforming parts. There are a few frustrating moments in the game due to the unpredictability of smacking Sonic around with bumpers. It can also get absolutely tedious because it lacks any method to save your game. However, Sonic Spinball is an experience worth your time, and implements things in pinball we've never seen before. It was a popular spin-off game that tried to tie itself into the TV show a bit.
9. Sonic Chaos (Sonic and Tails)
- System/Platform: Game Gear, Sega Master System
- Developer: Aspect, Sega
- Publisher: Sega, Majesco Games, Tec Toy
- Release Date: Nov. 23 1993
Sonic Chaos is the first game where you can fully control the flight of Tails and choose to play through the game as Sonic or Tails at the start of the game. Sonic Chaos was developed by Aspect, the company that made Sonic the Hedgehog 2, so you know it’s good. Though it may be really fun to play as Tails, he can't enter special stages and collect the chaos emeralds. If players want to gather all the stuff in the game then they want to play as Sonic. We think this game is great. However, we wonder what the point of putting Tails in the game is, if Sonic is the only one that can 100% the game.
Dr. Robotnik has once again stolen the chaos emeralds from an island. In order to preserve the island, which needs all the emeralds to live, Sonic and Tails set out get them back. Aspect made Sonic and Tails move faster than in their previous games to this point, Sonic is almost synonymous with speed after all! “Sonic Chaos” was not as successful as some of the previous iterations of Sonic, but it was a good addition to the Sonic library of games.
8. Sonic Heroes
- System/Platform: GameCube, PC, PlayStation 2, Xbox
- Developer: Sonic Team
- Publisher: Sega, Sold Out Software, SCEA
- Release Date: Jan. 5, 2004
The ability to switch out characters on the fly is a very cool concept, and reminds us of “The Lost Vikings” from Blizzard. Though people did complain a bit due to the camera issues, it was a solid game for the most part. It was like a Sonic Adventure game with a lot more platforming, and character swapping. The game revolves around different plot points for different Sonic teams. Sonic's team focuses on taking down Eggman, Amy's team searches for missing friends, and Shadow's team focuses on obtaining some sort of treasure from Eggman. There is also the Chaotix team that gets a phone call for a job, and they take the case.
With so many plot points flying around, the game can seem a bit confusing at times. Each team also has a different level of difficulty. Its core gameplay is actually quite good, however, and it was a breath of fresh air for the sonic game-play formula. Metal Sonic makes a return to the franchise as well and gives both Eggman and Sonic a run for their money. Sonic Heroes is worth your time to check out!
7. Sonic the Hedgehog 2
- System/Platform: 3DS, Android, Blackberry, Game Gear, Genesis, IOS (IPHONE/IPAD) Mobile, PC, PlayStation 3, Sega Master System, Windows Mobile, Xbox 360
- Developer: M2, Sega, Electronic Arts, Aspect, Sonic Team, Backbone Entertainment, EA Mobile
- Publisher: Sega, Electronic Arts, Tec Toy, Samsung, EA Mobile
- Release Date: Nov 20, 1992
Sonic returns with a friend (Tails) in the first Sonic game since the original. If you had a friend to play with back in the 90's, you made them play Tails. Not only did Tails have infinite lives, he was also more useful in the special stages when controlled by a friend. Strategies were usually comprised of taking down the boss with Tails, while Sonic sat there and dodged stuff (lazy jerk). The story revolves around saving Tails and the animals from becoming robot minions, once again. Only this time you have an invincible two tailed fox as a friend.
After the player collects all the emeralds in Sonic 2, they can turn into “Super Sonic”, for the first time in the series. Super Sonic is invincible (unless you fall off a cliff), and ridiculously fast. In fact, his super form is so fast in this game, that the 2D camera sometimes has trouble tracking him! There are also secret cheats you can use in the sound test options. One such cheat can get you an interesting “developer mode”, to make Sonic turn into a bunch of weird junk. Sonic the Hedgehog 2 remains a classic that has aged quite well over time.
6. Sonic and Knuckles
- System/Platform: Genesis, Xbox 360
- Developer: Sonic Team
- Publisher: Sega, Tec Toy, Samsung
- Release Date: Oct. 17, 1994
Sonic returns in a big way on the Genesis. We think having all of the original Sonic games on the list isn't fair to the other Sonic games. So we'll talk about all of them with this game. Knuckles was introduced in Sonic the Hedgehog 3, as Sonic's rival. When Sonic and Knuckles work things out, they become friends (sort of). Robotnik is at it again with the emerald stealing, and takes Angel Island's master emerald. Sonic and Knuckles then go about saving the island in their own ways.
You can finally play as Knuckles! Glide, run, and climb your way to success. Not only was this a stand-alone game, you could hook it up to Sonic 1, 2, and 3! Connecting the game to the previous Sonic games allowed for expansion content before the age of tons of official DLC. You could now replay previous Sonic games as Knuckles, with added content for you to find. People could now replay Sonic the Hedgehog 3 as Knuckles, to see his side of the story!
5. Sonic Adventure 2
- System/Platform: Dreamcast, Gamecube, PC, PlayStation 3, Xbox 360
- Developer: Sonic Team, Sega
- Publisher: Sega
- Release Date: Jun. 18 2001
Love it or hate it, Sonic Adventure 2 was well reviewed. The original Sonic Adventure was also well reviewed, but it isn't as polished as its sequel. Shadow the Hedgehog was introduced in Sonic lore for the first time, and he was well placed in this game. That infamous Sonic Adventure camera is back in full swing, however, so prepare for mild irritation. Play as the “Hero” team or “Dark” team, and race to uncover professor Gerald Robotnik's secret super-weapon.
Shadow had his own game, which wasn't well reviewed at all. Sonic Adventure 2 was Shadow's first game, and many say best game that he was featured in. When “SA2” was first released it was pitched as a game where you could play the good guys or the bad guys. No matter which side you choose, in the end Sonic and Shadow are heroes. Play Shadow and team up with Eggman and Rouge. Play Sonic and team up with Tails, Knuckles, and Amy the NPC. Give it a playthrough!
4. Sonic Rush Adventure
- System/Platform: DS
- Developer: Dimps Corporation,
- Publisher: Sega, Nintendo
- Release Date: Sep. 18, 2007
The Nintendo DS was one of the best selling handhelds of all time, and after Sonic ‘06 no one expected Sonic to really make a large comeback. Never doubt the blue hedgehog! Sonic Rush Adventure was not only a good DS game, it was one of the best Sonic games period. You help Sonic and Tails build ships to take on pirates! Though it was mostly a 2D game, it incorporated 3D elements, and utilized the dual screens on the console like the original Sonic Rush. Blaze the Cat makes her return here as well.
Sonic Rush Adventure is a fast-paced Sonic game. Sonic crashes into Blaze's dimension, and has to take on new enemies. The levels are fun, and have very little in the way of stopping Sonic's speed. Sonic's “speed boost” ability was implemented very well, and is now in some of the best Sonic games out there. When Sonic does stop, it's usually due to a platform section you have to pass. The special stages in Sonic Rush Adventure are also very good and you can utilize the DS stylus for pinpoint precision.
3. Sonic Colors (Sonic Colours)
- System/Platform: DS, Wii
- Developer: Dimps Corporation, Sonic Team
- Publisher: Sega
- Release Date: Nov. 16, 2010
Sonic Colors shares a lot in common with the Sonic Rush games, it even incorporated the air-time trick system. The boost ability also makes a return. Sonic Colors is a game that moves very fast, with little in the way of slowing the action. Sonic must save a race of aliens by stopping Eggman at his interstellar amusement park. At first, Sonic and Tails aren't really sure if there's an evil plan or not, but Sonic, of course, finds out quickly that Eggman is up to his old games. You will have 10 wisp abilities that different colored wisps provide.
You'll switch between 2D and 3D camera angles, as you zip through the levels at break-neck speeds. You feel like you're on a roller coaster through the whole game, which is appropriate for the setting. If you're the kind of person that doesn't like voice acting in Sonic games, this one isn't going to win you over. But if you can get past the characters’ voices, you'll find one of the best Sonic games there is.
2. Sonic CD
- System/Platform: Android, IOS (Iphone/Ipad), Ouya, PC, PlayStation 3, Sega CD, Windows Mobile, Xbox 360
- Developer: Sega, Sonic Team
- Publisher: Sega, Tec Toy
- Release Date: Nov. 19, 1993
Sonic returns and this time he has a love interest! This is the first Sonic game with Amy Rose and Metal Sonic, two fan favorites! This is one of the best 2D Sonic games ever created, and it's a classic! Sonic CD features in-game animated scenes, and a past/future element. Help Sonic save the passage of time, and help take down Robotnik. Depending on whether you obtain a “Good Future” rating in each zone depends on which ending you get. You have one of two possible endings in this game!
Sonic CD was originally for the Sega CD console. We're glad to see this game made it past another console death, and is now available for just about everything. Like most Sonic games, this game has a few codes you can implement to make the game easier. It also has a really creepy “Sonic Suicide” animation if the game is left idle for 3 minutes, which ends your freaking game. Other than that, Sonic CD is extremely well reviewed and has stood the test of time.
1. Sonic Generations
- System/Platform: 3DS, PC, PlayStation 3, Xbox 360
- Developer: Dimps Corporation, Sega, Sonic Team
- Publisher: Sega
- Release Date: Nov. 1, 2011
Here we are, the number one spot to date. Sonic Generations is (so far) the best game that we think Sonic has to offer a modern audience. It implements “Classic Sonic”, and “Modern Sonic” seamlessly into one game. Players are able to experience classic levels in 3D, and modern day Sonic levels in 2D respectively. Sonic Generations revolves around a time monster that tears time apart, and now Sonic and his past self have to put it back together again.
Sonic will relive most of the content of his past games and bosses, making this one crazy-fun package for players. It's also well balanced and features the tricks and boost from the Sonic Rush games. We have to note here, though, if you have motion sickness, this (and many other Sonic games) may not be the game for you. We realize there are many strong opinions about Sonic out there. We think Generations speaks for itself. Give it a shot, especially if you've never played it before!
Sonic has many other great games that we thought deserve an honorable mention. “Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed” being one of them. Though “Transformed” is fun, it's a racing game which features a character roster way above the standard stand-alone Sonic game. Sonic Unleashed is another Sonic game we think deserves a mention, if only for the originality. We think we should also mention “Dr. Robotnik's Mean Bean Machine”, which is basically the first Puyo Pop game. We sure hope you enjoyed our list, did you have any Sonic favorites that aren't on it? We would love to read your comments below!