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Sonic Battle

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Quotation1 Sonic and pals are gearing up for some brawling action! Quotation2
Tagline
Sonic Battle
653609
Developer(s)
Publisher(s)

Sega

Designer(s)
Release date(s)

JP 4 December 2003
NA 5 January 2004
EU 27 February 2004

Genre(s)

Fighting, adventure, role-playing

Mode(s)

Single player, limited multiplayer

Rating(s)
  • ESRB: Everyone (E)
  • PEGI: 7+
  • CERO: A
Platform(s)

Game Boy Advance

Media

128-Megabit Cartridge

Input

Game Boy Advance D-Pad

Preceded by

Sonic Advance 2 (de facto)
Shadow the Hedgehog (chronologically)

Followed by

Sonic Heroes (de facto)
Sonic Advance 3 (chronologically)

Sonic Battle (ソニックバトル Sonikkubatoru?) is a fighting game for the Game Boy Advance. The gameplay consists of 2D sprites fighting in three dimensional environments similar to the Double Dragon games. Unlike traditional fighters, it is easy to play and there are no complicated combos that need to be memorized to perform special moves.

Story

About 4,000 years ago, a sentient weapon was created by an ancient civilization. After being lost for millenniums, the weapon, called a Gizoid, was unearthed and researched by Prof. Gerald Robotnik. It remained dormant for another half century before being discovered by, of all people, resident would-be ruler of the world and Gerald's grandson, Dr. Eggman. Frustrated at his inability to get the dormant Gizoid to work properly, Eggman dumped the contraption at Emerald Beach where it was discovered once again, this time by Sonic the Hedgehog.

The Gizoid, which Sonic dubs Emerl, gets wrapped up in the affairs of Sonic's friends, allies and rivals. Through his encounters with Sonic, Tails, Knuckles, Amy, Cream, Gamma, Rouge, and Shadow, Emerl grows and evolves from a soulless robot into a fun-loving mech with personality traits from all of the above. But while the gang is having fun raising their new mechanical toy, there are those who recognize Emerl's true power. Now that the Gizoid is working again, Eggman's got his eye on it, Rouge wants to turn it into a master thief, and Shadow senses that, despite their efforts to humanize him, Emerl is still designed and programmed to be a weapon of mass destruction.

The story comes to a close when Dr. Eggman challenges Emerl to a battle aboard his new Death Egg. While Emerl is able to defeat the mad doctor, Eggman takes advantage of Emerl's core programming - to obey whoever is strongest - by using the Death Egg's Final Egg Blaster to take out several stars. However, the programming conflict between Emerl's new personality and weapon design cause Emerl to lose control. He knocks out Eggman and turns the Final Egg Blaster on Earth. Sonic attempts to use the Master Emerald to neutralize Emerl's Chaos Emerald powers, but when that fails, he's forced to defeat him in combat. With a final goodbye, Emerl is destroyed, but Sonic believes that they'll see him again someday.

Gameplay

Sonic Battle is very different from normal Sonic games in terms of gameplay. Players can explore the overworld, which is made up of "Emerald Town", "Holy Summit", "Central City", "Night Babylon", and "Gimme Shelter", though during each part of the story only certain maps can be visited. By going to a selectable area, the player may train with other characters, fight E-121 Phi's, or continue the plot.

Battles take place on 3D arenas with 2D sprites, and are split up into Point, Survival and Time. Point Battles require the player to be the first to get a certain amount of points by KO'ing other characters participating in the battle. Survival requires the player to defeat all opposing characters by KO'ing them until they run out of lives. Time Battles require the player to reach a certain objective within a certain amount of time.

Before the battle starts and before the player re-enters the battle after being KO'ed, they are able to select from three different move types; "Shot", "Power" and "Trap". Shot attacks are mid- to long-range attacks, which can be directed north, south, east, or west. Power attacks are typically signature attacks of the character, and vary between each character. Trap attacks involve the character placing or releasing an explosive device. During selection, the player selects which attacks will be Ground, Aerial, and Guard. Ground is the basic Special Attack, used when the character is on the ground. Aerial is a variant of a special attack used while the character is up in the air, which is often an air-to-ground attack. The Special Attack selected as "Guard" protects you from opponent's move in the same category. For example, if Guard is on Shot, all shot moves are automatically blocked until you die. All characters are also capable of Healing themselves at varying speeds. Defending from special attacks and Healing allows characters to fill up Ichikoro Gauge situated above the HP bar. When this gauge is full, the character flashes and their next special attack is a one-hit K.O. if it hits. Blocking these attacks however immediately fills the other character's gauge.

After a battle when Emerl is present, Emerl gains Skill Points based on how well the player fought. Winning the battle earns one point. Winning without losing a life earns two points. Winning without losing a life or any health earns five points. Giving an Emerald Shard to Emerl earns ten points, These points allow skills that Emerl has copied from the battle to be selected as part of Emerl's moveset. These skills are ranked one to five stars, with each star being worth five points. The total point worth of the skills cannot exceed the total number of Skill Points Emerl has.

Characters

Character Description
Sonic pose 61 Sonic the Hedgehog - The main protagonist of the game.
Tails 44 Miles "Tails" Prower - Sonic's trusted sidekick.
Knuckles 23

Knuckles the Echidna - A powerful echidna who is Sonic's friendly rival.

Amy 21 Amy Rose - A pink hedgehog who wants to be Emerl's mother.
Shadow 7

Shadow the Hedgehog - A black hedgehog who doesn't seem to remember his past.

Rouge 10

Rouge the Bat - A professional thief and spy, and wants Emerl to be a thief

Cream 8 Cream the Rabbit - A polite little girl who is great friends with Emerl.
Emerl battle giant Emerl - A Gizoid discovered by Dr. Eggman thanks to his grandfather's diaries.
Gamma

E-102 Gamma - (Chaos Gamma, unlockable, no episode)

Chaos battle giant

Chaos - (unlockable, no episode)

E-121 Phi

E-121 Phi - (Only in multiplayer mode when two or more people choose the same character)

EggmanBattle2

Dr. Eggman - The main antagonist (only playable through a Gameshark code).

Arenas/Unlockable

All arenas except for Death Egg can be used in Multiplayer.

Mini Games

In addition to the principal Story Mode with overworld exploration and battle arena fights, there are a number of other game modes available in Sonic Battle for single or multiplayer (by connecting the Game Boy Advance with up to three others via a link cable). These include "Battle", "Challenge", and "Training" modes, where one can specify the specific characters, opponents, and arenas to spar in, as well as a selection of 2D mini games largely unrelated to the fighting motif. These include:

Character Description
180px-Sonic battle soniclash! Soniclash! - The only minigame to be available for play at the start of the game, Soniclash! sees players bounce around a pinball-like arena, rolled up in spin dash. Multiplayer only. Players: Sonic, Tails, Knuckles, Shadow. Big the Cat makes an occasional cameo sitting on the edge of the arena fishing.
180px-Sonic battle flying get Fly & Get - Unlocked by beating Tails' episode in Story Mode. Fly & Get is an aerial ring-collection game which inspired a later Sonic Cafe mobile phone release, Tails' Flying Get. Multiplayer only. Players: Tails, Cream, Gamma, Rouge.
180px-Sonic battle mine hunt Mine Hunt - Unlocked by beating Knuckles' episode in Story Mode. Here Knuckles plays a game of minesweeper. Due to a design oversight, there is no way to exit the minigame once it is started. However, no data is lost by turning off the system while playing Mine Hunt. Unlike the other minigames, this is for one player only, although you can transfer it to another Game Boy Advance with no cartridge inserted.
180px-Sonic battle treasure island Treasure Island (called Treasure Hunt occasionally) - Unlocked by beating Amy's episode in Story Mode. Multiplayer only. Players: Amy, Cream, Knuckles, Rouge.
180px-Sonic battle speed demon Speed Demon - Unlocked by beating Shadow's episode in Story Mode. Multiplayer only. Players: Shadow, Sonic, Tails, Knuckles.

Secret Combo Cards

Combo Cards representing each character can be obtained by entering a code in the Sonic Team building in the Central City area during Emerl's story.

  • Sonic: 75619
  • Tails: OTrOI
  • Knuckles: yU3Da
  • Amy: alogK
  • Cream: ZAhan
  • Shadow: ArmIa
  • Rouge: AhnVo
  • Gamma: tSueT
  • Chaos: EkiTa

Note: when having the cards, they cost six stars (30 skill points). When using them in a battle, Emerl will do either 1st and 2nd, 2nd or 3rd or 1st and 3rd attack and have the heavy attack or a special attack at the end, he will not stop attacking until the move finishes.

Note: Shadow's and Chaos's cards are anagrams of Maria and Tikal respectively.

Reception

 Reception
Aggregate scores
Aggregator Score
GameRankings 69.34%[1]
Metacritic 69 out of 100[2]
Review scores
Publication Score
Game Informer 6/10[3]
GamePro 3.5/5[4]
GameSpot (7.7/10)[5]
GameSpy 3/5[6]
IGN 8/10[7]
Nintendo Power (7.4/10)[3]
X-Play 3/5[8]

The game received generally mixed to positive reviews from critics. According to review aggregator site Metacritic, the game has a score of 69 out of 100 based on 28 critics, indicating "mixed or average reviews".[2] According to the video game review aggregator site Game Rankings, the game has a score of 69.34%.[1] While some critics praised the game's "surprisingly deep arena-fighting gameplay", graphics, and multiplayer mode, others dismissed it for its "limited moveset" and use of 2-D sprites on a 3-D fighting arena.

IGN gave the game a positive review, saying "It does try hard to be what Smash Bros. is, and even though the game doesn't quite reach the same status Nintendo and HAL created for the Nintendo consoles, Sonic Battle has enough stuff to make it one of the top original fighters on the Game Boy Advance system."[7] GameSpy also gave a positive review, saying "A solid and pleasantly deep arena beat-'em-up with lots of longevity, and through the presence of the Hedgehog and his posse adds absolutely nothing to the game, it's nice to see them getting work in these tough economic times."[6] Nintendo Power gave a more mixed review, saying the "moves are limited, but the overall experience is tons of fun."[3] GamePro also gave a mixed review, criticizing the game's story mode, saying "The biggest problem with Sonic Battle is the poor game design in Story mode. Earning Skill Points, and thereby new abilities for Emerl the Robot, is a grueling ordeal."[4] Gamestyle gave a more negative review, saying "Fighting really isn't Sonic's strength - at least not with regard to good gameplay."[9].

Chronology and Legacy

The storyline of Sonic Battle was loosely adapted for TV in episodes 45 and 46 of Sonic X, entitled "Prize Fights" and "A Wild Win" respectively. The story is later continued in Sonic Advance 3 (in which a new robot, Gemerl, is built from Emerl's data) and heavily referenced in Sonic Chronicles: The Dark Brotherhood.

Trivia

  • Oddly, the seven Chaos Emeralds are all green in this game, and the Master Emerald does not have its own separate sprite, while the shattered Emerald has its own sprite for the shards.
  • Strangely, when Sonic gets the Master Emerald, he states "A Master Emerald": this is most likely a typo.
  • When Chaos Gamma appears before Sonic, Tails and Emerl, Sonic and Tails quickly recognize Gamma, who they haven't seen since Sonic Adventure. Knuckles and Amy also remember Gamma. Rouge notes that he looks similar to Omega.
    • Even though Knuckles seems to remember Gamma, the two have never actually met. Knuckles merely followed him to get to the Egg Carrier.
  • When entering Central City, a blue sign that reads "Sonic Team" is easily seen. Emerl can also enter it in his story but requires various passwords which unlock battle cards.
Sonic battle story difference

The mistranslation (left) and the corrected one (right).

  • The Japanese version has a language option where players can choose from Japanese to English. Some differences and mistranslations can be seen.
    • One example is in the beginning of Rouge's story where Rouge calls the hacker, which is Eggman, a "dirty bastard" for hacking the Central Computer.
    • Another example is the menu where the game asks if the player is going to continue the story or play a different episode. The whole menu text itself is different in the English releases of the game and has a massive mistranslation (pictured on the right).
  • This is the first Sonic game with 2D artwork not done by Yuji Uekawa.
  • While Amy's sprite is identical to her sprite in the Sonic Advance games, there's a minor difference: her irises seem to be big.
  • Although this game was released before Sonic Heroes, there are several references to the game including Rouge mentioning Omega and Shadow's presence there. This game appears to take place after the events of that game.
    • If that is the case, it is unknown how Shadow remembers his past, given that during the events of Sonic Heroes and Shadow the Hedgehog he could not remember anything beside Maria. This probably means that the game takes place sometime after Shadow the Hedgehog.
  • Shadow is faster than Sonic in this game, but his battle card states it's because his Air Shoes propel himself faster.
    • It's undetermined how Shadow got his air shoes to move faster, but it has drawbacks as he skids before he stops and has slightly less control over where he goes.
  • Dr. Eggman's base in the game, "Gimme Shelter", shares the name with the popular Rolling Stones song.
  • In the Shibuya Downtown course in Sonic & Sega All-Stars Racing, Sonic Battle artwork can be seen on a plane.
  • In the Virtual Training, even though the player gets multiple lives, one K.O. will still end the Virtual Training.
  • In Sonic Colors, when Sonic grabs a red Wisp and tranforms he turns into a Red Burst Color Power; this appearance resembles the fireball on the box art of Sonic Battle.

Gallery

Sonic tshirt head (1) An image gallery is available for
Sonic Battle.

References

  1. 1.0 1.1 Sonic Battle for Game Boy Advance. GameRankings (2004-01-05). Retrieved on 2013-04-09.
  2. 2.0 2.1 Sonic Battle for Game Boy Advance Reviews. Metacritic (2004-01-05). Retrieved on 2013-04-09.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 {{cite web|url=http://www.metacritic.com/game/game-boy-advance/sonic-battle/critic-reviews |title=Sonic Battle Critic Reviews for Game Boy Advance |publisher=Metacritic |date= |accessdate=2013-04-09}}
  4. 4.0 4.1 GamePro Media: (2010-01-13). Sonic Battle Review from GamePro. Web.archive.org. Retrieved on 2013-04-09.
  5. January 13, 2004 3:38PM PST (2004-01-05). Sonic Battle Review. GameSpot.com. Retrieved on 2013-04-09.
  6. 6.0 6.1 GameSpy: Sonic Battle - Page 1. Gba.gamespy.com. Retrieved on 2013-04-09.
  7. 7.0 7.1 Sonic Battle - IGN. Gameboy.ign.com. Retrieved on 2013-04-09.
  8. [1]Template:Dead link
  9. [2]Template:Dead link

External links

Sonic Battle

Main article | Gallery
Sonic the Hedgehog spin-off video games

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