3DS Review: Sonic Boom: Fire and Ice

A Sonic of Ice and Fire…

Let’s get the tough bit out of the way first…Sonic Boom on Wii U and the 3DS last year wasn’t that great…the Wii U version was really glitchy, so glitchy it could be completed in less than an hour if exploited enough. But as a Sonic fan, I’m always inclined to give the blue hedgehog another chance…
Fire and Ice feels like a return to Sonic’s roots, despite the new look for the characters. It’s your standard 2.5D Sonic game, but with a difference. Sonic and his friends can harness the power of the elements to either melt ice or freeze water with the tap of one of the 3DS triggers. You can play as Sonic, Amy, Tales, Knuckles and Sticks. The plot is your standard Sonic fare…Eggman has found a new element to harness called Ragnium and attempts to use it to power his robots to try and even be faster than Sonic.

The levels themselves will need to be replayed a few times to find all collectables, as some require other characters’ abilities to access new areas. You can switch characters during a level but you don’t unlock them all till at least after the first world. The levels are nicely designed and definitely a vast improvement over last year’s games. There are also bonus stages, boss battles, races, challenge rooms, mini-games and even local multiplayer modes.
It handles well for the most part, running through the levels feels like classic Sonic…although some levels do have questionable difficulty spikes that result in a cheap death, but that too isn’t too far from classic Sonic anyway. The visuals aren’t too shabby and runs at a decent framerate throughout, while the music isn’t too bad either with some catchy tunes thrown in.

The Verdict

Sonic Boom: Fire and Ice is a vast improvement over the previous Sonic Boom games. It’s not perfect and does throw cheap deaths at you, while one of the mini-games actually caused my 3DS to freeze completely. Despite that, the game is a return to form and the future of Sonic games is looking up based on glimpses at Sonic Mania and what is no doubt a sequel of sorts to Sonic Generations. The blue hedgehog still has some tricks up his sleeve after all…

Score: 8.0