What Games Should You Play If You Like Sonic The Hedgehog

Sonic the Hedgehog has garnered plenty of success in over 30 years of his career

The character, sounds from the origunal game just makes my heart melt in fondness of this blue hedgehog. From five animated series, two movies (with a third one on the way), a comic book series by two publishers, and a long-running video game series beloved by gamers of all ages — all culminating into a single mega multimedia franchise. Sonic has had some ups and downs, including the infamous 2006 game that was supposed to reboot the franchise, but now he’s back on the right track following the release of the open-world venture Sonic Frontiers, as well as the release of The Murder of Sonic the Hedgehog, the visual novel by Sonic Team’s beloved and comical social media department.

With Sonic Origins Plus coming down the wire, adding more to the original compilation of the Sega Genesis titles — and rendering Classic Amy Rose as a playable character for the very first time by audience demand — we’re gonna take a look at some other games like Sonic that you can play right now. Some of them are even inspired by the gameplay styles of the Blue Blur’s adventures. Here are our selections.

Aladdin

“Aladdin” on the Sega Mega Drive (also known as Sega Genesis) is a classic video game released in 1993 by Virgin Interactive Entertainment. It is based on the popular Disney animated film of the same name, which was released in 1992. The game was developed by Virgin Games USA and designed by David Perry.

In “Aladdin,” players assume the role of the eponymous character, Aladdin, as he embarks on an adventure to rescue Princess Jasmine from the clutches of the evil Jafar. The game follows the storyline of the movie and features various levels and locations inspired by the film, including the streets of Agrabah, the Cave of Wonders, and the Sultan’s Palace.

The gameplay in “Aladdin” combines elements of platforming, action, and exploration. Aladdin can jump, climb, and attack enemies using his sword. Throughout the levels, players can collect apples to throw at enemies, gems for extra points, and genie tokens that grant wishes when enough are collected.

One of the standout features of “Aladdin” on the Sega Mega Drive was its exceptional graphics and animation. The game’s visuals were hand-drawn by Disney animators, giving it a vibrant and colorful look that closely resembled the art style of the film. The animation was smooth and detailed, contributing to the game’s immersive experience.

In addition to its stunning visuals, “Aladdin” on the Sega Mega Drive featured a memorable soundtrack. The music was composed by Tommy Tallarico and drew inspiration from the movie’s original score, incorporating lively and catchy tunes that enhanced the gameplay.

“Aladdin” received critical acclaim upon its release and is often regarded as one of the best platformers on the Sega Mega Drive. Its engaging gameplay, stunning visuals, and faithful representation of the source material contributed to its success. The game was later ported to several other platforms, including the Super Nintendo Entertainment System (SNES) and various home computers.

Kaze and the Wild Masks

When her best friend Hogo falls prey to an evil curse that spreads throughout the Crystal Islands, Kaze sets out to find the four titular wild masks to get to the bottom of it, all while dealing with raging living vegetables. Each mask allows the agile rabbit to unleash the powers of the animal guardians of the sky, land, and sea — eagle, tiger, lizard, and shark.

Kaze and the Wild Masks was heavily inspired by the Sega Genesis Sonic titles with the 16-bit-like visuals, though the graphics are crystal clear than those of its ‘90s counterpart. Plus the powers Kaze gets from the masks involve speed, flight, power, and even breathing underwater. Just like Sonic can crouch into a ball like a regular hedgehog and Spin Dash into his enemies, Kaze can use her ears to make them attack like nunchucks and cling to vines in addition to flying.

Castle of Illusion Starring Mickey Mouse

Before Epic Mickey and before Kingdom Hearts, Disney worked with Sega to put out Mickey Mouse’s video game classic, Castle of Illusion. The plotline reads like a Halloween story, as Mickey goes to the titular castle to rescue his beloved Minnie from the witch Mizrabel, who wants to steal Minnie’s youth and beauty a la the Salem Witches of Hocus Pocus.

Castle of Illusion Starring Mickey Mouse came out a year before Sonic the Hedgehog made its debut, but it does carry a plot device that is similar to the Chaos Emeralds: the Seven Gems of the Rainbow. Just like Sonic has to find the Chaos Emeralds and use their powers stop Dr. Eggman’s plans for world domination, Mickey has to find all the gems in every illusion-riddled room of the castle and utilize them to stop the youthful version of Mizrabel.

Super Mario Bros. (1985)

“Super Mario Bros.” is a legendary video game released in 1985 by Nintendo for the Nintendo Entertainment System (NES). Developed by Nintendo’s creative mastermind Shigeru Miyamoto and his team, the game is considered one of the most influential and iconic titles in the history of gaming.

In “Super Mario Bros.,” players control the character Mario, a mustachioed plumber, on a quest to rescue Princess Toadstool (later known as Princess Peach) from the villainous King Koopa (later known as Bowser). The game takes place in the Mushroom Kingdom, a colorful and whimsical land divided into multiple worlds and levels.

The gameplay in “Super Mario Bros.” revolves around platforming and exploration. Players navigate Mario horizontally across side-scrolling levels, avoiding obstacles, defeating enemies, and collecting power-ups and coins. Mario’s primary method of attack is jumping on top of enemies to defeat them, although there are also power-ups that grant him special abilities, such as the Super Mushroom, Fire Flower, and Starman.

Each level in the game is filled with various obstacles, such as gaps, pits, and moving platforms, as well as enemies like Goombas, Koopa Troopas, and Piranha Plants. The levels culminate in a castle, where players face off against one of Bowser’s minions before ultimately confronting Bowser himself to rescue Princess Toadstool.

“Super Mario Bros.” introduced many groundbreaking elements that revolutionized the gaming industry. It popularized the side-scrolling platformer genre, establishing conventions that would be emulated by countless games in the years to come. The tight controls, precise level design, and imaginative world-building created a captivating and immersive experience for players.

The success of “Super Mario Bros.” was instrumental in revitalizing the gaming industry, especially in North America, after a period of decline. The game became a huge commercial success and helped drive the widespread adoption of the NES console. It received universal acclaim from critics and players alike and has since sold millions of copies worldwide.

“Super Mario Bros.” spawned a vast franchise that has continued to thrive to this day. Mario has become Nintendo’s flagship character, appearing in numerous sequels, spin-offs, and adaptations across various consoles and handheld devices. The game’s influence can be felt in the countless platformers and adventure games that followed, solidifying its status as a true classic and a timeless masterpiece in the world of video games.

Freedom Planet

If he showed his feminine side, Freedom Planet is basically what Sonic would’ve been like. It revolves around a spunky dragon girl named Sash Lilac as she ventures with her friends, wildcat Carol and basset hound Milla to stop Lord Brevon from stealing the Kingdom Stone and taking over the galaxy.

Freedom Planet was initially developed as a Sonic fan game using original content made by DeviantArt user Ziyo Ling for the main cast, but creator Sabrina DiDuro eventually turned the game into her own original IP, changing Lilac from a hedgehog into a dragon and replacing Dr. Eggman with a villain whose eyebrows resemble his mustache. Players can control any of the girls they choose, but the game serves as a love letter to the classic Sonic games with the loop-de-loops, hills, ramps, corkscrews, and rock walls present in each level.

Shantae: Half-Genie Hero

In the first HD game of the Shantae series set after the good ending of Shantae and the Pirate’s Curse, the belly-dancing half-genie guardian of Scuttle Town tries to save Sequin Land from destruction after Risky Boots steals the blueprints for Shantae’s uncle’s latest invention, the Dynamo. With the power of her Hair Whip Attack and the ability to transform into different animals through dance, Shantae travels all over the island to collect components for the machine that could either protect her town or destroy it, depending on how it’s used.

Shantae: Half-Genie Hero is like Sonic in that the levels are divided into action stages in each zone that can be replayed to obtain new items that are only accessible if you transform into a certain creature. The soundtrack is also kicking thanks to Jake Kaufman and his mix of desert-style music and sound from other genres, like pop and rock.

Mega Man X

In the SNES spin-off set 100 years after the original Mega Man series, Mega Man X takes place in a futuristic world where humans and sentient Reploids live together in harmony. The game centers on an android named X, a member of the Maverick Hunters who, with the help of his partner Zero, has to stop the former military task force’s leader Sigma and the other Mavericks from bringing about human extinction.

Mega Man X feels more like a Sonic game than any original Mega Man title with its engrossing storyline themed around saving the world from robotic destruction. Just as the last level of every zone ends in a boss fight against Dr. Eggman, each level in Mega Man X (which can be played in any order) ends in a boss battle against its respective Maverick.

Cuphead

Cuphead and Mugman venture around Inkwell Isle to collect soul contracts from the Devil’s runaway debtors after Cuphead loses a game to the Devil himself at his casino, forcing the brothers to make a deal with him to have their lives spared if they collect every soul or risk the Devil taking their souls if they fail. Knowing that the debtors won’t turn in their soul contracts easily, the cup-headed brothers gain the power to fire energy blasts from their fingers and take them down.

Players can control Cuphead and/or Mugman through the infamously difficult boss fights and run-and-gun levels much like they can control Sonic, Tails, and/or Knuckles in Sonic Mania and Sonic Origins. The character and world design take direct inspiration from the rubber hose animation style of 1930s cartoons made by Disney, Warner Bros. Cartoons, Fleischer Studios, and MGM Cartoon Studio, among others — much like Sonic was originally designed after Felix the Cat and Mickey Mouse, with his current design taking after Bugs Bunny.

Crash Bandicoot N. Sane Trilogy

Crash Bandicoot N. Sane Trilogy takes the original Crash games of the PlayStation era and upgrades them with the high-definition CGI graphics of the 2010s. The orange marsupial travels through all the worlds as well as all through time and space to defeat his own creator, Dr. Neo Cortex, and stop him from taking over the world — not to mention rescue his girlfriend Tawna in the first game.

When the original Crash Bandicoot trilogy came out in 1996, critics compared it to the Sonic games with its unique blend of platforming and combat, in that it’s equal parts side-scrolling and equal parts third-person linear. The remakes retained that charm but were made even more cartoonish than the originals.

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Stevie Flavio
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