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Game Info:

Sonic Adventure DX: Director’s Cut
Developed by: Sonic Team
Published by: Sega
Released: (The steam version) Mar, 4, 2011
Available on: PC, (ported from the GameCube, which was in turn an enhanced remake of the Dreamcast version.)
Players: 1 (2 if Tails is in a Sonic level)
Genre: Action, Adventure, 3d Speed based platforming.
ESRB Rating: E for everyone. Violence.
Price: $9

“Awww yeah! This is happening!” These first words uttered by Sonic can just about sum up your experience of Sonic Adventure DX. If you smile and laugh at the 90’s jargon, spouted by a roof-hopping, supersonic blue hedgehog, then you are in for the ride of your life. If you groaned and complained that his mouth was out of sync. well, I suggest you leave now and go play Sonic 06. I hope you enjoy the pretty graphics there.

 Sonic Adventure DX is a very ambitious title. There are effectively at least 7 small games rolled into one package. Yet it never feels disjointed. This variety has allowed it to still be enjoyable for all these years. There are 6 playable characters, each with their own unique style of play that you have to unlock by meeting them in a character’s story mode. It really makes for an exciting and replayable time as the order in which you unlock characters is largely up to you and who you played as.

Each character also has his or her own unique play style.  For example, Sonic is basically a 3D version of what all the older Sonic games were. Run really quickly through cool set pieces dodging robots and freeing animals at the goal. There are A LOT of extra paths and fun places to explore along the way. Tail’s levels play a lot like Sonic’s, except with different shortcuts and the strict time limit of a race. Knuckle’s levels have an even bigger emphasis on exploration as each level basically opens a small world map for you to explore and collect 3 pieces of the Master Emerald. In Amy’s stages you move at a much slower pace and must escape a giant attack robot with cunning and a giant hammer. Big’s stages are largely hated by fans as it is effectively an emulation of Sega bass fishing. I for one kinda enjoyed these stages. They make you slow down and enjoy the scenery the games have to offer, often with some calming and tranquil music to boot. And lastly there are the E-102 Gamma stages, in which you must run (or walk) and gun to get through the stage within a limited time. The more combos you connect, the longer time you have to finish the stage.

Highlights:

Strong Points: One of the best gameplay experiences I’ve ever had with a lot of variety and an interesting story. Also 90’s retro talk is pretty radical, dude.
Weak Points: Minor glitches: It’s old and shows its age sometimes. Big the Cat?
Moral Warnings: Fairy Tale esq story. Chaos is called a “god” at one point, and Tikal prays to the Master Emerald. Chao pets can be abused if you’re sick and twisted.

One of the aspects of this game that kept it from becoming just another Sonic game was the Chao Garden. In this place you get to raise tiny creatures, named Chao, like pets. You bring them animals to play with and they gain attributes from these animals. Eventually with enough attributes you can have them play games and race with other Chao’s. It’s really a fun game that can last for years. One other interesting tidbit that makes this game great is the little text scroll that comes up whenever you start the story mode back up. It tells you what had just happened in the story to remind you where to go next. It’s little details like these that really cement it as a classic.

 Even though this is an upgraded version of the original, it still shows its age in places. The animation is kinda clunky. The lines seem somewhat outdated, but it all comes off as enjoyable. Like when watching I Love Lucy and they make a comment about the 48 states and you just sit and chuckle. The music is to this day some of the best I’ve heard from gaming, especially Sonic’s tracks. The controls are easy to learn and a blast to use! Rarely, if ever, will you feel like the game cheated you out of a life.

Score Breakdown:
Higher is better
(10/10 is perfect)

Game Score - 84%
Gameplay - 19/20
Graphics - 6/10
Sound - -810
Stability - 4/5
Controls - 5/5

Morality Score - 79%
Violence - 8/10
Language - 8.5/10
Sexual Content - 10/10
Occult/Supernatural - 5.5/10
Cultural/Moral/Ethical - 9.5/10

The story of this game, while simple, is deep. Without spoiling anything, I will just say it involves parenthood, greed, revenge, awakening an ancient evil, showing kindness to learn about love, friendship, and doing the right thing. While there is some fairy tale magic here and there I don’t feel it’s dangerous to children. I played it from the age of 4 and can firmly say it had a positive effect on my life. If you would let your children watch a Disney carton like Beauty and the Beast then this will be fine. As long as they can tell the difference between a fantasy and reality then this is a game for all ages. And to be honest the talking blue anthropomorphic hedgehog ought to help distinguish that difference.

Sonic Adventure is one of, if not my all time favorite game. It has a heartwarming story, lasting environments, memorable characters and set pieces, and gameplay that is still fun to this day. From a presentation standpoint it’s not as polished as some other games, but I view it like The Princess Bride. Who cares if that R.O.U.S. looks fake? It’s still a masterpiece of a movie! And this is one masterpiece of a game. Quite frankly, I’ve yet to see a platformer match it in all my years of gaming. It’s not perfect, but it sure is a blast!

-Dallen Malna

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Christ Centered Gamer looks at video games from two view points. We analyze games on a secular level which will break down a game based on its graphics, sound, stability and overall gaming experience. If you’re concerned about the family friendliness of a game, we have a separate moral score which looks at violence, language, sexual content, occult references and other ethical issues.

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