The bigger the better, some say, but Sonic’s just got smaller! Can our blue buddy get to grips with a compact screen? ADRIAN PITT finds out...

At long last, handheld buffs everywhere can get their mitts on the game that’s on every Sega owner’s lips. And let’s be honest, it’s been a long time coming! But was it worth the wait? Well, tor those with a Game Gear, the answer has to be YES. A bit unfair, though, having to sit in the shadows for months, while Master System and particularly Mega Drive owners squawked on about how awesome the graphics are and how addictive the gameplay is.

But squashing Sonic onto the small screen hasn’t affected either of these elements. In fact, the game looks and plays almost exactly like the Master System version!

Identical twins?

There are a few minor graphical changes, but nothing drastic. The backgrounds are virtually identical to those of the MS game, although the platforms, ledges etc differ slightly in some areas.

Handy little warning signs have been placed here and there to inform of impending danger, such as hazardous spikes or moving platforms, and little arrows point the way down hills and mark out the best route through caverns and underground tunnels.

The graphics are great, colourful, nicely shaded and beautifully animated. The scrolling’s top notch (if a touch too fast) and sound remains bright and jolly throughout.

Game Gear Sonic has six levels of action, from Green Hill to Sky Base Zone. Each still has three Acts, the route to each displayed on the map screen. Extra lives and continues are there (if you can find them) and when sufficient rings have been collected there’s the pinball bonus stage to play.

Play till you drop!

The Master System game was a fairly easy and the same can be said of the Game Gear version. But Sonic is just so playable, even if you complete it I’d bet my bottom dollar it won’t have chance to gather dust.

There’s little more I can say about this spikey specimen, except if you’re looking for a game that screams playability and addictivity and the only machine you possess is a Game Gear, rush out and buy Sonic The Hedgehog — the small screen version is nothing to be ashamed of. It’s like my mummy once told me, size isn’t important!


Aah! What could possibly be cuter than a tiny Sonic The Hedgehog? He’s simply adorable on the small screen, impatiently tapping his foot, running and jumping here and there to collect rings, but never losing his cool. Basically a scaled down version of the MS version, the GG appears slightly sharper and quicker in scrolling. Instantly addictive and with the same number of stages, GG Sonic is quite a challenge. Excellent graphic quality and a jaunty soundtrack ensure this game will become a classic. A must for GG owners who haven’t had a chance to sample Sonicmania first hand.



SF Rating

90% -Continues, map and bonus’
91% - Near identical to MS. Scrolls fast
82% - Loads of great tunes and ditties
92% - Easy to play, hard to put down
82% - A bit easy but plenty of levels


A great conversion. Highly recommended

Sega Force magazine
Sega Force - Issue 03

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