Sonic Unleashed is a game which released in 2008 on PS2, PS3, Wii and Xbox 360. This game introduced a new type of gameplay mechanic in the form of Day and Night stages. The Day stages have you speeding around the place as Sonic. The Night stages however are beat em up stages with Sonic the Werehog, a result of Sonic having Dark Gaia powers within him and transforming when the moon appears.
The plot begins with Sonic attacking Eggman's ship. He initially wipes out everything in his way, but gets caught by Eggman. He escapes by turning Super Sonic and destroying everything in his path. He was about to finish Eggman, when Eggman started apologising for his recent behaviour. Little did Sonic know that this was a lie and Eggman caught him, stripped him of his Super transformation, drained the Chaos Emeralds and turned Sonic into a Werehog before sending him and the Emeralds plummeting towards his possible death. The world has also split apart because of the premature awakening of Dark Gaia by Eggman. Talk about a rude awakening! Now that the plot is out of the way, let's talk about gameplay, shall we?
The Day stages now have a mix of 2D and 3D sections. New moves like the Drift and Quick Step can be used for dodging and gaining extra boost meter bars for using the Sonic Boost which is a feature shown in Sonic Rush. These levels are a lot of fun to run through because you can speed through the levels as Sonic and smash your way through enemies while going through a few platforming sections as well. The problem with these stages is that there is only one actual stage and a few short missions. This is due to the fact that Sega were promoting the new Werehog gameplay to the point that Day stages are minimal. There are also certain bosses that take place during the day as well.
The Night stages are beat em up levels where you play as Sonic the Werehog. These sections have you do a a mix of puzzle solving, platforming and fighting enemies. You can gain red Gaia Orbs for more experience to unlock more moves, health or Unleashed gauge, green orbs for health and blue orbs for the Unleashed gauge. When you have some of your Unleashed gauge filled, you can go Unleashed mode (aka Kaio-ken) to wreak havoc on the enemies/mini bosses. To be honest, I find this part of the game really bland and repetitive. What's worse is that most of the game is made up of 4-5 Werehog stages per continent, making this adventure a really slow and stale one. I hate the Werehog, as I feel it was just thrown into the game to try and mix up the game formula. This gameplay ends up just falling on its face and making boring combat with the horrid platforming sections.
The positives include the awesome Day stages, the music and the humour in this game.
The problems I have found in this game include the dull Werehog gameplay, the lack of Day stages compared to Night stages, the either over-sensitive or unresponsive controls which is mostly present in the Night stages, the level design at some points and the missing content from this version compared to the Xbox 360 and PS3 versions.
Overall, Sonic Unleashed had potential but instead did what Shadow the Hedgehog did by introducing a gameplay mechanic that not everybody would like. In this case, it was the Werehog. I do not recommend Sonic Unleashed if you are mostly looking for a traditional Sonic game. In my opinion, this is easily one of the worst Sonic games ever produced and I hope that the Werehog is never brought back. If you wanna play this game, I recommend you play the PS3/360 versions of Unleashed. The Wii/PS2 versions are poor in terms of content.