The only Sonic games that matter in one incredibly lazy portable package. Yay, I suppose.

User Rating: 7 | Sonic Classic Collection (Limited Edition) DS
During the Genesis era, some people seriously believed the Sonic games to be as great, or even better than Mario. It was an age of incredibly stupid console wars between companies, including official ads poking fun at each other in gaming magazines (well, it was mostly people making jabs at Nintendo, but still). That era, thankfully, lies dead in the past. Except for those fanboys that insist on recycling this very same old stupidity every new generation, but that is another story.

Anyway, the Sonic games were not only fun, they represented solid examples of high quality games. People expected no less than excellent platforming action by buying a game with the name "Sonic" on the cover, especially the ones for the Genesis console. These were the greatest of the bunch, and they are all included here (Sonic The Hedgegog, Sonic 2, Sonic 3 and Sonic & Knuckles – and the Sonic 3 + Sonic & Knuckles game). Then, some time later, Sonic made the jump to 3D. In the process, they tried too hard to make him look like a badass, started adding useless new characters to the franchise (until the point it became laughable and predictable), the original team disbanded and that old magic and credibility was lost, possibly forever.

But who cares, right? The classic games live on, in our hearts and minds. Possibly more in our minds than anywhere else, since Sega keeps releasing the same games over and over, with countless collections like this one, trying to remind us of a time when people gave a lot of damn about their little mascot. And to cash in some more bucks, of course.

The ports themselves (or the emulation, which seems to be the case) are pretty close to the originals. Except for the slightly cramped screen, and some slowdown issues that can occasionally appear (although the Genesis-released games also had quite a few of those), this is a pretty faithful release. If you are not a purist, you will not be bothered at all, and will end up having a great time playing these classic games again (or for the first time). By the way, the compilation is a really lazy job. Along with the games, there are a few unlockable concept art images, but not really anything aside from that. The save state system (which actually only saves the zone you were in, not your current location) is quite useful, if you don't have the time to play through the whole games in one sitting (and because of the inevitable low battery).

To be honest, the Sonic Mega Collection (Plus) for GameCube and Playstation 2, released not that long ago, is a way better choice to spend your money in. Not only it has all the games that are included in this package, but also all the Sonic games released for Genesis, and some released exclusively on Sega's handheld consoles. It even has a few non-Sonic games too. The only reason you'd want this Classic Collection is if you never had any of those consoles (or one with backwards compatibility, I guess) or because it is your intention to finally play them on a portable cartridge. Or, should I say, "officially" play them that way.

If you never played these classics before, this is a great chance to correct that omission. They are also the only games that truly matter from the Sonic franchise, so it is cream of the crop stuff here. Considering that Sonic 3 & Knuckles is one of the greatest 2D games, I think that is more than enough reason to consider this compilation. Buy it cheap, though.