Please, Please, Please Release The Sonic Advance Trilogy On Nintendo Switch Online

Image: Nintendo Life/Zion Grassl

Soapbox features allow our individual writers and contributors to voice their opinions on hot topics and random topics they have in mind. Today, Stuart is pleading with the powers that be to get a certain trilogy on Nintendo Switch Online…

Game Boy Advance is coming to Switch Online! Perhaps! Almost certainly, anyway! With a bit of luck. Hmm.

Listen, it’s not confirmed, but it’s as good as, which was enough to prompt me to write a rant imploring Sega and Nintendo to resolve their age-old differences and bring back a nearly forgotten series of Sonic classics. A rebirth era for 2D Sonic fans. Yes, of course I’m talking about the venerable Sonic Advance series. Three games, a tangentially linked combat RPG (Sonic Battle) and a pinball machine (Sonic Pinball Party).

Those last two don’t count much in there, though that’s not to say they don’t have anything to offer – Sonic Battle has a shocking story for a Sonic game, and Pinball Party is definitely a good time. It’s the core games, though, that I crave the most – Sonic Advance, Sonic Advance 2 and… uh… (check Wikipedia) Sonic Advance 3. I mean, come on! They have not been re-released – other than an appearance on the Japanese Wii U eShop – since their original GBA cartridge arcs in 2001, 2002 and 2004 respectively. Yeah, I can feel a hardcore Sonic fan nudging me on the back about the 2003 N-Gage version of the original game, Sonic N. I know, buddy. Believe me, I’m obsessed too.

Either way, the games would be a perfect candidate for the Switch Online rumored service and I pray to the various gaming gods for that to happen. While the Sonic Advance series isn’t perfect, I think it’s a bit brilliant, and I’d like to take some time to explain exactly why each of the games is specifically worth your time, effort, and energy.

Sonic Advance kicked things off with the first 2D Sonic game since Sonic & Knuckles in 1994. Wait, no, that’s not strictly true – the brilliant Sonic the Hedgehog Pocket Adventure for Neo Geo Pocket Color hit that ill-fated system in late 1999. Granted, it’s the first “high-level” 2D Sonic game and the first Sonic game on a Nintendo system (alongside Sonic Adventure 2: Battle which was launched on the same day, December 20, 2001). It was seismic at the time, a real “snowball in hell” moment for gaming.

But that’s not the point; the indicate, dear reader, is one that must be expressed as eloquently as possible: Sonic Advance slaps. My friends, it’s a hell of a game; it’s no match for the Mega Drive classics but it’s closer than anyone would dare to admit. The ability to play as Tails and Knuckles with their familiar skills makes things even more vintage. Even better, you can now play as Amy Rose with her Piko Piko hammer, straight out of Sonic Adventure. It’s more than just a novelty inclusion – it transforms the game, making it much harder and forcing you to approach it with much more caution. She can’t spin the dash and isn’t invulnerable when jumping – but a series of new hammer-based moves partly make up for that.

The sequel arrived next year, creatively titled Sonic Advance 2, and is best known for introducing the loathsome name Cream the Rabbit, the last of Sonic’s pals and a de facto “easy mode” for a game that was already pretty easy. His ability to throw his little sidekick Chao – the equally disgustingly named cheese – at enemies from almost anywhere on screen made him a neat little death machine.

There’s also a new, highly controversial emphasis on speed. You know the common (and inaccurate) criticism of classic Sonic that it’s just about “keeping the right to win”? Well, Sonic Advance 2 is probably the closest the series has come to doing this little right word a reality. Sure, there’s no need to win, but you’re encouraged to go faster than ever with a prevalence of speed boost pads, simplified grind mechanics, and the new ability to get a burst of speed extra during an uninterrupted run. a few seconds. Even boss fights see you chasing Robotnik as he darts away from you in his latest mecha monstrosity, taking gunfire.

It’s hard to really like Sonic Advance 2, but if you fall for it, it’s going to be your favorite. The music and visuals are fantastic and – for better or worse – it’s probably the hardest Sonic game to get all seven Chaos Emeralds. However, you will need to unlock everything. You need to get all the Emeralds with each of the other four characters in order to play as Amy, who unfortunately isn’t really worth it as she’s become much less interesting than she was in the original Sonic Advance. . Boo! Hiss!

Next, let’s move on to Sonic Advance 3, a game so weird that when its ROM file leaked before release, many people assumed it was a fake fan effort. You see, there’s a lot of stuff about Advance 3 that’s a little…off. The physics feel like they’ve been tweaked and the game feels weightless at times. It’s also bizarre how the entire beat structure of the first two titles has been revamped with a weird, almost labyrinthine hub area that lets you explore empty, uninteresting spaces without enemies in order to locate the “Act Rings”. that lead to each area; which also now have three acts each instead of two, with a fourth boss act found separately in the hub.

So far, so strange, but still a really good time. The major new mechanic is team moves; At the start of the game, you choose two characters from the same group of five as the previous game, then send them out into the world. It’s cool in that you can just leave Sonic behind while, say, Knuckles and Cream go on an adventure. Since many team moves (used by holding the “R” button) are based on propulsion through the air, the levels have increased verticality and frankly feel absolutely expansive. Finding the hidden Chao in each act is therefore a significant challenge to complete, although it’s more fun than collecting the special rings in Advance 2.

It almost goes without saying that the music rules here; the final “Chaos Angel” zone is ridiculously epic and disturbing at times. The story is sort of a general sequel to Sonic Battle – ignore it. Treat it like the 21 2D Sonic levels it is and you’ll be hard pressed not to have fun.

So again, Nintendo – Sega – anybody – I implore you to make this series available again, and the Nintendo Switch Online service is the perfect opportunity. In fact, it would be better for everyone if you (Nintendo, I’m talking to you) would just do as I say at all times.

So, the Sonic Advance series, yeah? Then the Klonoa matches. Then Kururin Paradi— [Snip! – Ed]

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