Sonic Wild Fire
"We originally considered making something that's a lot more like the Sonic games you've seen on other platforms," says Sonic Wild Fire producer Yojiro Ogawa. "However, since the Wii hardware gives us the opportunity to revolutionize traditional games and make them better, we wanted to create a deep game with incredibly simple control." That could end up being the smartest decision that Sega has made about the Sonic franchise in years--Wild Fire feels incredibly fresh and addictive. So much so, in fact, that this should easily one-up Sonic's upcoming PS3/XB360 adventure.
At first glance, however, the game-play here seems awfully limited. Sonic runs through levels along a preset, on-rails path--you take control by holding the Wii Remote horizontally and tilting it to the left and right in order to steer your :hog. Jumping over obstacles requires a simple button press, while thrusting the controller forward during a leap initiates a homing attack that you can then combo across multiple enemies. And once you've collected enough energy orbs, you can also bust out a special maneuver that automatically rockets Sonic forward at maximum velocity.
Wild Fire's startlingly pared-down design appears to eliminate the annoying problems that continue to hinder traditional 3D Sonic games. Because it's a more controlled experience, the confusing camera angles and cheap deaths you've become accustomed to are history, yet the game still retains the speed and spectacle we all demand from a killer Sonic title. And don't worry that the game will force you to play as some totally lame Sonic hanger-on (scope the sidebar to meet the franchise's least appealing costars).
"We really felt that it was important to focus on Sonic in this game," explains Ogawa. "Therefore, Sonic is the only character that players can control in the main game."
Despite our glowing praise, don't be shocked if your first attempt at controlling Sonic with the remote ends in tragedy. You're initially tempted to make sudden, jarring controller motions, but slightly tilting the Wii Remote yields far better results. It's an easy learning curve to master, though--our Sonic-steering skills improved dramatically during our short time playing the game. As engaging as the main game feels, expect to spend plenty of quality time with Wild Fire's suite of multiplayer contests. "We are planning on including loads of minigames," says Ogawa. "These will be simple, challenging party games designed around the Wii controller capabilities."
Download Sonic Wild Fire
- PC compatible
- Operating systems: Windows 10/Windows 8/Windows 7/2000/Vista/WinXP