Sonic & Knuckles Collection

Arcade 1996 Windows SEGA Platformer Side scrolling

Great pair of SEGA classics

For PC owning Sonic fans, this is a great chance to pick up some classic platforming action that star everyone's favourite super fast hedgehog and his equally bizarre buddy. There are technically three games in this collection, Sonic 3, Sonic and Knuckles and Sonic 3 and Knuckles, which is a sort of fusion of the other two games. Sonic 3 retains the series' trademark sense of speed and fun, pitting the bold hedgehog against his nemesis Dr Robotnik once more in a series of side scrolling levels that really test the player's reactions. This one adds a few new elements to the formula laid down in the first two games, with new shields and bonus stages available, while the main levels themselves are now much larger than before and which require some serious exploration to uncover all their secrets. Sonic and Knuckles continues the story directly from the conclusion of Sonic 3 and retains the gameplay style but adds in the new character of Knuckles who cannot jump as high as his pal, but who can glide long distances to enter new areas, climb walls or even bust them open to reveal more secrets. While the series hasn't differed wildly in terms of gameplay, this isn't necessarily a bad thing as these games show. The sheer speed on display here adds a whole new element to platforming that Mario simply can't match and it is undeniably exhilarating racing through the many varied environments, bouncing, spinning and leaping your way without fear or pause for thought. The games here feature those trademark SEGA touches, with great character design and wonderfully put together levels that are simply a joy to explore, so if you've never played them on their original home, or you just fancy revisiting them, this is the perfect opportunity.

Port straight from the Megadrive

Don't get me wrong, this isn't some blatant rip off, some half baked clone or a game sloppily ported, what I meant to say in the title is that the game collection as you see it here is very faithful to the original games. Compared to the Sonic CD title, you'll get a much harder pack of games. That is because, while not as fast, these first few titles were a bit less streamlined for fast paced playthroughs. And again, don't get me wrong on this either. They are still much faster games than most of your regular left to right platformers, but they surely weren't as advanced as CD version Sonic! Otherwise, Sonic and Knuckles make great sidescroller platformer protagonists, with that wobbliness and coolness that only consoles games of your can elicit! Don't get fooled, indeed Sonic has been used and overused, time and again as a poster boy for that other kind of platforming experience, but really, it's not an overrated game, it truly is deserving of a go. So, if this is your first time considering playing it, do give it a change. I too was biased against it, being more of a Super Mario head, but Sonic made me change my mind in no more than the course o a very speedy weekend, hehe!

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