This game has been waiting its turn for a very long time at this point. Well, I finally took the plunge and got it. Surprisingly the game doesn’t beat the originals though. Mainly this is due to the length being a lot shorter and the plot not being as interesting. I beat this game in around 2.5 hours compared to the Wii U one which took 7 and the 3DS original which I played for 14 hours although the story was more in line with 7. This one seems like they had to rush it out because otherwise I do feel like a lot of effort was put into it. There are a good amount of cutscenes and things of that nature.
The plot of the game is that Eggman is trying to build the Eggbot racers that can be even faster than Sonic. To this end he builds a robot that can attract the rare kind of metal he needs. The bot tries his best but Sonic and friends prove to be too much for him. Unfortunately this makes Eggman turn on him as well. The bot really wants to prove himself to Eggman so he’s going to continue to try and grab the metals. Meanwhile Sonic and friends are trying to stop the elemental geysers being produced as part of this and are forced to travel the globe. Can they save the planet from ecological disaster?
So there isn’t really much of a story here. Still, it’s very nostalgic to see the ole Sonic Boom cast once more. I did greatly enjoy the show and felt like it should have gotten another season. The cutscenes are really solid to the point where the cutscenes look like they could have been from the actual show. This is the level of detail I like to see and shows this was not some simple cash in. A real effort was made here and I definitely appreciate that. They should have found a way to squeeze Shadow into the story though. I think that would have been a really good idea to raise the stakes. We do get a fun climax though where Eggman is actually forced to ask Sonic for help. Sonic and Eggman is the big team up we’ve been waiting for so that was definitely pretty hype.
The gameplay is a 2D platformer like most Sonic games. You navigate your way through obstacles and grab collectibles as you make it to the goal. The new wrinkle to this game is that you now have the ability to use fire and ice thanks to the ecological phenomenons going on around the world. The fire ability allows you to melt ice while the ice power lets you freeze water. They’re fun little abilities. I wouldn’t say they change the gameplay experience all that much so it’s a pretty harmless gimmick which I can definitely roll with. This is the kind of experimentation that I’d say works rather well.
As I mentioned though, the game is really short. At a little over 2 hours that’s just not a whole lot of time. It has more replay value than Kirby though as each world has several bonus levels as opposed to just one. It’s part of why the game is so short though as you just don’t need to play most of the levels. That should add a good amount of play time in. Then you’ve also got the bonus racing mode where you can even play as an Egg bot. You use the gems you collect to buy more suits so that’s pretty fun. There are also 3 upgrades as well. It’ll probably take you a while to buy them all though. There are 6 upgrades and completing the game just gave me enough money to buy 1. Buying all 6 would definitely be difficult but maybe the bonus levels have more gems than the normal ones.
I already talked about how great the graphics are so I don’t need to go on that for very long. The in-game graphics are just as solid. There are a few different playable characters who all have their own strengths and abilities which is nice for variety. The soundtrack is less memorable though and in general you’ll probably forget it as soon as you finish the playthrough. I would have liked some remixed tracks or something to spice it up. There aren’t a lot of boss battles either which could be the reason. Surprisingly it would seem like not every world had a boss unless some of the bosses are optional.
The boss fights themselves are pretty fun although most of them play in a very similar way. I’d say that it’s just the gameplay not being able to change things up much but that’s not really true. I think there’s more they could have done with it. Each boss battle has 2 phases. One phase you use Sonic to home attack the enemy while the other has your partner use their signature skill. Since all of the partners are different that part is always unique but Sonic is the one where his gameplay is exactly the same all the time. Switching that one up a bit would definitely have gone a long way if you ask me. Still, I’ll give the game props for the tag system. I thought that was pretty fun.
Overall, Sonic Boom: Fire & Ice is a worthy sequel to the original Sonic Boom. that being said, I wouldn’t say it was particularly noteworthy or knocking it out of the park either. It’s a fun game that will keep you busy until you complete it. Afterwards even with the replay value you won’t have much to do though so this is definitely the kind of game you just playthrough once and keep it moving. If you like platformers then I recommend checking this one out. The cutscenes help make the game feel a little more special as well. A little more length would have been nice but I’ll take what we can get. Hopefully we get a new Sonic game soon because I miss that series.