The following contains mild spoilers for the first two islands of Sonic Frontiers, available now on Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S, and PC.
Every long term game sonic The franchise has introduced new characters, causing the size of the cast to skyrocket to an unmanageable magnitude. Fortunately, the newest entry in the series, sonic frontiershas selected a handful of characters to star in the title, allowing them to receive more in-depth characterization than previous games. borders cleverly uses the interactions between Sonic, his friends, and the world around them to build on earlier elements of their personalities and delve deeper into their motivations.
sonic frontiers follows the titular hedgehog after he and his friends crash into the Starfall Isles and are separated. After waking up, Sonic quickly discovers that his companions are being held captive on the islands, which sets him off on his new adventure. As he explores these unknown places, Sonic must find a way to free his friends while he solves the island’s many mysteries and faces a new antagonist, Sage.
Amy Rose is a lover, not a fighter
The first area that players explore in sonic frontiers it is Kronos Island, where Amy Rose is being held captive. As Sonic explores this region, side stories containing unique conversations can be unlocked by finding a collectible called “Memory Tokens”. These conversations quickly escalate into a subplot in which Amy tries to help the Kocos, the island’s inhabitants. Her help consists of reuniting the young Kocos with her mother and helping a lonely Koco find her missing lover of hers.
In previous games, Amy was incredibly monotonous with her obsession with Sonic as her defining attribute. In sonic frontiers, Amy’s main trait is a sense of duty to help those in need without worrying about herself. At one point, Sonic mentions that he can’t help with the Kocos because he needs to free her from her and find Tails. Amy is frustrated by this comment and questions how Sonic could ignore creatures in need. It’s only when Sonic promises to help them after he saves her that she relents. sonic frontiersThe structure allows fans to see that Amy’s love is not just for Sonic, but for all living things.
Knuckles is paying for the sins of his people.
Like Sonic and Amy, Knuckles also benefits from sonic frontiers‘reduced roster. In previous sonic games, Knuckles’ responsibility as protector of the Master Emerald has been his only concern. While this is still true in bordersplayers learn a bit more about this drive in the anime’s prologue. Divergence and the game itself. In the animated short, Knuckles tells the story of his race with the Master Emerald. Overcome with greed, his ancestors attempted to control the artifact, awakening a power that was not theirs, leading to their destruction. Knuckles views his duty as penance for his sins even though he himself is not responsible for the transgression.
Knuckles’ regret further informs his actions throughout the game. When he is unlocked, his side story focuses on her need for relief from the obligation to him. Years spent solely protecting the emerald have taken their toll on Knuckles, but he won’t admit that he needs a break. The crime of his ancestors still weighs heavily on him to the point that he ignores his own wishes.
borders it also reminds fans that Knuckles is a warrior. Another plot through his side stories is that he plays the role of a commander of a troop of Kocos warriors. Previous entries showed Knuckles as Sonic’s rival in strength, but borders reminds players that Knuckles comes from a race of soldiers. He’s not just a palette swap of the protagonist: he’s a unique character with his own personal history and strengths.
Many of the characters in the sonic The franchise is beloved by fans, but that doesn’t mean it can’t be improved upon. While some fan favorites are left out of sonic frontiers, those that remain reach a level of depth never before explored in the series. The game shows fans just how heroic these gaming icons can be and fleshes out their previously superficial motivations. Hopefully, the inevitable sequel will provide an entirely new cast with the same treatment.