Sonic the Hedgehog iOS review

Sonic the Hedgehog iOS reviewSega released Sonic the Hedgehog – as in the original Mega Drive game – for Android last week, and the existing iOS version (available for yonks) received a juicy update to version 2.0.

As such, I figured I’d take a trip down memory lane; set my time machine for 1991 and revisit one of the best 16-bit games of all time. Does Sonic the Hedgehog still cut the proverbial mustard? You better believe it!

You all know how Sonic the Hedgehog works, right? Blue hedgehog runs at ridiculous speeds, spinning through – and jumping on – enemies and collecting rings as he goes, all in a bid to reach and defeat the evil Dr. Robotnik.

The entire Sonic the Hedgehog experience is here, that’s six different zones (from Green Hill to Scrap Brain) with three acts each, plus the final boss encounter. In addition, you can now unlock Tails and Knuckles – complete with their unique abilities.

As per tradition, finish Act 1 or 2 in any zone with 50 or more rings and you’ll enter the spinning Special Stage where you can claim a Chaos Emerald, while each third act sees a unique battle with Dr. Robotnik.

Sonic the Hedgehog is beautifully presented, running in widescreen at 60 frames per second. The brilliant soundtrack has also been re-mastered (I subconsciously found myself whistling through the whole thing, much to the amusement of my lady), and there’s even the iconic “Se-gaaaaa!” loading screen.

Sonic the Hedgehog iOS review

There are other neat touches, such as the ability to set the box art to Japanese, European, or US (Genesis).

All awesome stuff, the only potential pitfall being the touch controls. Well, I’m glad to say controlling Sonic the Hedgehog with your touchscreen is a breeze.

See, the original Sonic the Hedgehog’s controls were incredibly simple, adopting a single button for jump. That’s it. And we’re emulating a simple Mega Drive d-pad as opposed to a modern-day analogue stick, so there are no compromises here. Au contraire, smartphone Sonic the Hedgehog feels great.

All in all, I don’t really have anything bad to say about Sonic the Hedgehog, certainly not as far as the conversion goes.

It’s worth mentioning – or reminding you – that it gets crazy tough near the end (the lightning fast Green Hill Zone lulls you into a false sense of balls-out security), but there’s a save option here that effectively allows you to restart an act with three lives. Excellent.


  • The entire Mega Drive experience is here
  • The re-mastered soundtrack
  • Tails and Knuckles are unlockable
  • The box art
  • Widescreen and 60 frames per second


  • Nah, not really

Summary: If you remember the 1991 original, you’ll love this. If you’ve never played Sonic the Hedgehog, now’s your chance to find out why it’s remembered as one of the best games of its time – if not all time.

Developer: Sega

Price: £1.99 @ App Store

Requirements: Compatible with iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4, iPhone 4S, iPhone 5, iPod touch (3rd generation), iPod touch (4th generation), iPod touch (5th generation) and iPad. Requires iOS 5.0 or later. This app is optimized for iPhone 5.

Sonic the Hedgehog iOS reviewSonic the Hedgehog iOS review

Read more about: Apple iPad miniApple iPhone 5iOSApple iPad 2Apple iPad 3Apple iPad 4Apple iPhone 3GSApple iPhone 4Apple iPhone 4S

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