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Sonic Dash is a game title developed by Hardlight Studio and released by Sega on 7 March 2013. The title of the game was first mentioned on 26 February 2013, at company description in LinkedIn, which reveals the game being developed to iOS and to Android, similarly to Hardlight's previous game Sonic Jump. On 21 February Sega removed the title from company description.
Sonic Dash received positive to mixed reviews, praising the gameplay mechanics and beautiful graphics, but criticizing on the game's repetitiveness and frequent crashes. As of 11 July 2013, Sonic Dash has received more than twenty million downloads on iOS and since the beginning of 2014, it has been downloaded over ten million times on Android.
Sonic Dash is an endless runner; it is very similar to the gameplay of the Temple Run series and Subway Surfers video games. The player directs Sonic, Tails, Amy, Knuckles, Shadow, Blaze, Silver, Rouge, or Cream through a never-ending 3D version of Sonic Heroes' Seaside Hill/Ocean Palace, moving forward at all times. The player can swipe his/her finger up to Spin Jump, down for a Spin Dash (this can also increase speed slightly), and sideways to Quick Step. The goal is simply to run as far as possible without hitting a wall, falling off the course, or taking a hit with no rings in possession.
When rings are collected, the Dash Meter at the bottom right of the screen fills, and when it is full, the player can tap the bottom of the meter to perform the Boost Dash, which is similar to the Sonic Boom or Boost. The player cannot jump during a boost, though Sonic automatically blasts through obstacles. A full dash meter doubles the score multiplier (when you dash, you lose the double multiplier). Upgrades such as "Headstart", "Magnet" and "Dash Boost" can be used and upgraded in-game. Players are able to share and compete for accomplishments such as "fastest time" or "longest distance". At certain times, Sonic reaches a set of three springs. Monitors above these springs indicate where they will take the player:
- Ring: Banks the player's collected rings, preserving them.
- Totem pole or Pillar: Takes the player to Seaside Hill.
- Loop-de-loop : Takes the player to a section with a few loop-de-loops, corkscrews, or other automated sections.
- Statue: Takes the player to Ocean Palace.
- Puzzle Piece: Takes the player to a section that, when completed, rewards the player with the ability to grab 1 of 4 puzzle pieces for the Daily Challenge.
- Sailboat: Takes the player to the beach.
- Zazz Symbol: Takes the player to a boss battle to fight Zazz.
- Eggman Symbol: Takes the player to a boss battle to fight Dr. Eggman.
- Question mark: Random effect, can be any of the above, except the Puzzle Piece sections and the ring banks.
If the player hits a spring that doesn't bank rings, then the player has the opportunity to perform four tricks. The player must swipe their finger according to on-screen directions. Doing so successfully will give the player a ring boost from ten to hundred rings, depending on how many rings the player currently has (the reward is greater the fewer rings the player currently has). Failing in the middle of a trick sequence gives no reward.
Currently Playable Characters:
- Tails (45 Red Star Rings to unlock or through daily spin jackpot or five days of daily challenges)
- Amy (30 Red Star Rings to unlock or through daily spin jackpot or five days of daily challenges after unlocking Tails)
- Knuckles (60 Red Star Rings to unlock or through daily spin jackpot or five days of daily challenges after unlocking Amy)
- Shadow (Unlocked during Global Challenge to run hundred laps around the world; also can be unlocked through daily spin jackpot or by spending 60 Red Star Rings)
- Blaze (Unlocked during the second Global Challenge to score big; also can be unlocked through daily spin jackpot or by spending 55 Red Star Rings)
- Silver (Unlocked during the Festive Challenge to collect Christmas presents on the track; also can be unlocked through daily spin jackpot or by spending 65 Red Star Rings)
- Rouge (Unlocked during the fifth global challenge to score big; also can be unlocked through daily spin jackpot or by spending 70 Red Star Rings)
- Cream (Unlocked during the Easter Global Challenge to collect Easter eggs on the track; also can be unlocked through daily spin jackpot or by spending 75 Red Star Rings)
- Android Robot/Andronic the Droid Hog (Only on the Google Play version on Android until June 29. Using the Robot 50 times will unlock Andronic, a Sonic version of the Android Robot)
- Crabmeat, which can be defeated in any way.
- Spikes, which must be defeated from the side, or do a Spin Dash as landing on them will hurt the player.
- Chopper, which flies out of large gaps. The player must tap on it to perform a Homing Attack and continue. Sometimes particularly large gaps with multiple Choppers (up to five) appear, which require stringing Homing Attacks. It is possible to destroy them with a Spin Jump during a Dash.
- Golden Badniks, golden variants of regular Badniks which give six times more points on destruction.
- Zazz - Boss for the Sonic Lost World promotion that was later made permanent. The first boss. Zazz rides on his Moon Mech and attacks by shooting stars in a pattern. Zazz and his Moon Mech can only be damaged by Homing Attacks once the springs have been reached.
- Dr. Eggman - The second boss. Eggman rides in his Egg Mobile and attacks by shooting missiles and bombs in a pattern. The gameplay is the same as the Zazz boss battle but you have to Homing Attack the missile launchers before the Egg Mobile.
Objects and Obstacles
- Item Boxes
- Red Star Rings
- Dash Panels
- Totem Poles
In November 2012, an interview with the UK toy trade magazine Toys 'n' Playthings, Sega of Europe employee Sissel Henno confirmed that Sega would have "several new digital titles" in 2013. On 28 February 2013, the title Sonic Dash was spotted on a listing from a Linked In profile. On 1 March 2013, Sega confirmed the game, with an official press release going out on 4 March. The game was announced to be on iOS, costing $1.99 in the U.S. and £1.49 in the UK. Since 29 March 2013, it can be downloaded for free. As for the Android version, there were rumors that it would be ported but Hardlight Studio's Chris Southall said there might be, because it would be very hard to port the flexible iOS Unity 3D engine into Android as of the experienced problem also in porting Temple Run and its sequel, so it was expected to take time before the Android version can be announced. In addition, Android development also took a long time because of newer devices requiring testing and development before getting it released.
On 19 September 2013, Sonic The Hedgehog's official Facebook page announced that Sonic Dash may come out on the Android "soon", possibly by the fall of 2013, although Hardlight's Facebook warned players that there was a fake version that was not developed by themselves.
On 26 November 2013, Sonic Dash was released for the Android on Google Play (Though it was later Released on the Amazon App Store on March 11, 2014). At its release, the Android version was caught up with the current iOS version, having all of the features the iOS version currently has except for Game Center, whereas, the Android version uses Google Play Games Services instead of Game Center.
Sonic Dash has received mixed to positive reception. Much of this reception has been praised for its graphics and other controls. But its in-app purchases, according to Destructoid, ranges from "not needed" to "pretty damn annoying."
Metacritic calculated a score of 69 out of 100 using 26 reviews about that game. IGN gave it a 6 out of 10, praising its gameplay and controls but criticizing its "Play-To-Win elements" and the amount of "unavoidable deaths."
According to Eurogamer, "The randomly-generated zones are filled with classic obstacles and enemies zooming towards you at an ever faster rate, and are showed off by some fantastic camerawork as Sonic zooms through long, twisting paths and loops. Rings are everywhere, which protect Sonic from a single enemy hit but not a collision, and can be 'banked' between zones to gradually level up the hog," although it finds "the entire game is framed and ultimately spoiled by in-app purchases," referring to the aggressive use of in-app purchases in the game.
- A scrapped Nintendo DS Sonic game, known as Sonic DS somewhat resembles this game, the demo shown at E3 2004 had linear race to the finish gameplay and took place in Seaside Hill; however the mechanics for these two games are very different.
- When the game was first released there were only four characters available: Sonic, Tails, Knuckles and Amy.
- Five global challenges with new game characters as star prizes were later added.
- Shadow was added in 18 July 2013 as the star prize of the first global challenge, which ended at 3 August 2013.
- Blaze was added in 26 September 2013 as the star prize of the second global challenge, which ended at 6 October 2013.
- Silver was added in 24 December 2013 as the star prize of the Christmas Festive challenge, which ended at 6 January 2014.
- Rouge was added in February 20, 2014 as the star prize of the fifth global challenge, which ended at 3 March 2014.
- Cream was added in April 24, 2014 as the star prize of the Easter Festive challenge, which ended at 5 May 2014.
- One of the block obstacles uses a tile from Labyrinth Zone.
- The set of three springs in this game is similar to a gameplay mechanic in Seaside Hill in Sonic Generations, in which the player could choose two different kinds of paths out of a set of three paths.
- When going over to the shop, a Sonic Riders model of the Blue Star, a Red Star Ring, a promotional Sonic the Hedgehog (2006) Tails poster, and Sonic's gloves and shoes can be seen.
- This is the first game in which Amy, Tails and Knuckles have a manually activated boost.
- Sonic can string together spin dashes by repeatedly flicking downwards and can cancel jumps (effectively a Stomp) by flicking downwards in midair.
- Sonic rolls when using a Dash Panel, similar to Sonic Unleashed (Wii/PS2) and Sonic Generations.
- For iOS, the minimum device required to play this game at an acceptable speed is one with an Apple A5 CPU or newer (The A5 CPU is used on the iPad 2, the iPhone 4S, the 5th Generation iPod Touch and the iPad Mini). On older devices, the game is unplayable due to very low frame rate, and certain graphics are disabled, such as the coral reef seen in the water.
- On Android, Google Play automatically checks on the device for any compatibilities in order for the phone/tablet to play Sonic Dash. If any of the phones' requirements aren't succeeded, it cannot be able to download Sonic Dash from Google Play. That doesn't mean that said device cannot run Sonic Dash.
- At the game's release in March 2013, Red Rings were once surprisingly rare and cannot be found in the main game. Instead, they are given three at a time to the player after completing a set of three missions and in special circumstances. Prior to the game's newer updates, the only other way to obtain them is through in-app purchases, a requirement met with much controversy.
- However, the Daily Challenges rewards players the chance to win five Red Star Rings on the second day, ten Red Star Rings on the fourth day, and twenty Red Star Rings on the fifth day if the player can select its prize during the quick raffle. As of recent updates, the Daily Challenges rewards players 5 Red Star Rings on the fourth day and 10 Red Star Rings during the fifth day if the player gains it during the quick raffle.
- Since one of the recent updates, Red Rings can now be found during gameplay once per day, appearing from the second run during that day, assuming there's a connection to the Internet.
- The Dash Panel has a new design that is different from the usual red and white design.
- There is a bug where if Sonic fails to do homing attack on a Chopper but there is only a small distance between the land, Sonic will just run past the pit.
- There's another bug where if Sonic uses a stomp after attacking a Chopper when he starts to be above solid ground, Sonic will fall through it and die. It's unknown if both of those bugs still apply with the Android version.
- Sonic, Knuckles, Blaze and Silver share the same running style.
- Tails and Rouge are the only characters who fly throughout the entire gameplay.
- Cream is so far the most expensive character in the game,
- The bosses are the only characters in the game with voice clips.
- The boss music for Zazz is the Deadly Six boss music from Sonic Lost World, and Eggman's music is the theme used for Egg Hornet in Sonic Adventure.
- So far, Android Robot is the very first and only Third-Party Characters that can do a Homing attack and perform a Spin Dash.
- The music that plays during the main menu/title screen is a remix of Blue Sky Zone from Sonic Jump. Additionally, this makes Sonic Dash the second game featuring entirely remixed tracks; the first being Sonic Generations if one doesn't count the cutscene score.
- ↑ http://www.sonicstadium.org/2013/02/hardlight-working-on-sonic-dash-for-ios/
- ↑ https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.sega.sonicdash
- ↑ http://www.gamesindustry.com/industry-news/detail/280559
- ↑ http://www.pocketgamer.fr/news/6454-exclu-premieres-informations-sur-sonic-dash-ios.html
- ↑ http://www.pocketgamer.co.uk/r/iPhone/Sonic+Dash/news.asp?c=48918
- ↑ http://kotaku.com/sonic-dash/
- ↑ http://www.vg247.com/2013/03/01/sonic-dash-announced-for-mobile-platforms/
- ↑ http://www.pocketgamer.co.uk/r/iPhone/Sonic+Dash/news.asp?c=49038
- ↑ https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10151710366497418&set=a.406270927417.185036.23050342417&type=1&comment_id=9822085&reply_comment_id=9822102&total_comments=12
- ↑ http://www.destructoid.com/review-sonic-dash-251450.phtml
- ↑ http://www.metacritic.com/game/ios/sonic-dash/critic-reviews
- ↑ http://www.ign.com/articles/2013/03/20/sonic-dash-review
- ↑ http://www.eurogamer.net/articles/2013-03-12-sonic-dash-review
- ↑