Sonic Origins Plus review for Nintendo Switch, PC, Xbox, PlayStation

Platform: Nintendo Switch
Also on: PS5, PS4, Xbox Series X, Xbox One, PC
Publisher: SEGA
Developer: SEGA
Medium: Digital/Cartridge/Disc
Players: 1
Online: No

As you’d expect, a lot of what I wrote about Sonic Origins last year still applies to Sonic Origins Plus. I mean, why wouldn’t it? The core idea behind it is the same: gather a bunch of the original Sonic games, add in a few more bells and whistles, and let nostalgia and improved visuals do the rest.

Somehow, though, that’s not quite the case with Sonic Origins Plus. While the core games themselves are obviously still fun, and the addition of Amy Rose as a playable character adds a neat wrinkle to them, not all of the new additions are as worthwhile: there are a dozen Game Gear Sonic games, and their performance is shockingly awful.

I mean, it’s possible this is just a Switch thing – we’re clearly at the point in the platform’s life where the system can’t always handle everything you throw at it. Still, it’s kind of shocking to play games like the very first Sonic the Hedgehog title on the Game Gear and have everything slow to a crawl whenever Sonic gets hit and his rings go flying, or to play Sonic Triple Trouble and have him float slowly across the screen every time he jumps – and that’s without even getting into how miserable the sound quality of these games is. Given that half the allure for upgrading from Sonic Origins is that Sonic Origins Plus features all these Game Gear games, it makes the value proposition seem a little iffy.

Mind you, if the other half of the allure is getting to play the games as Amy Rose, that’s definitely a better reason to be interested in Sonic Origins Plus. Just like being able to play as Tails made Sonic Origins that much better – since his style of gameplay drastically changed the way you played these iconic games – so, too, does being able to play as Amy. She’s similar to Sonic, but she has a hammer attack that makes hitting enemies just a little more satisfying.

Is playable Amy enough reason to get you to splurge on Sonic Origins Plus – either as a first-time purchase, or if you’re upgrading from Sonic Origins? That’s harder to say. Like last year’s base game, Sonic Origins Plus remains a neat trip down memory lane with some snazzy new graphics and a fun storyline cartoon tying it all together, but when you consider that the Sonic Game Gear games perform so abysmally they’re actually a net negative, it’s hard to see why you wouldn’t just stick with last year’s original.

SEGA provided us with a Sonic Origins Plus Nintendo Switch code for review purposes.

Grade: B