01st Apr2013

‘Sonic Dash’ Review (iOS)

by Phil Wheat

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Manufacturer: Sega
Specs: Requires iOS 4.3 or later (iPhone, iPod touch and iPad).
RRP: 69p
Rating: 5/5

Developed specifically for mobile platforms by Hardlight Studios, Sonic Dash comes to iOS with a fully realised 3D Sonic world in yet another (the third released this month) endless runner. The game sees you play as Sonic or one of his friends to take on Seaside Hill, using each characters abilities to dash, spin and jump your way through at high speeds. As per traditional Sonic titles, various hazards, enemies and awesome 3-dimensional loop-de-loops await you as you flick left, right up and down with your speedy fingertips in hopes of getting just that little bit further…

Sonic the Hedgehog would, at least on paper, seem like the perfect candidate for an endless runner game. After all Sonic is all abut high speed gameplay and collecting rings, two things that endless runner games are also known for. Couple that with bold, bright graphics, the usual catchy Sonic soundtrack and a dash of video gaming nostalgia, and you’d be on to a winner right? So why isn’t Sonic Dash as good, or as fun, as it should be?

Why? Because a) Sonic Dash is nothing we’ve haven’t seen before and b) the game is bogged down by an over-abundance of in-app purchases. Essentially the hit endless runner app Subway Surfers in a Sonic skin, the real problem with the game is its reliance on “freemium” content to allow you to progress further and climb leaderboards. In fact such is the reliance of in-app purchases that you can, should you so wish, BUY your way up the leaderboards if you’re willing to but enough red rings that is… Of course there are gold rings to collect, but these only let you unlock  power-ups to help you get further, including head starts, revives and ring magnets  – typical endless runner upgrades.

Graphically the game cannot be faulted and it’s control system is just as good. But, sadly, Sonic Dash is nothing that hasn’t been done before or without such a heavy reliance on freemium content.

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