32 Sega's ode to Sonic's glory days continues to impress • PLATFORM PS4, XBOX ONE, SWITCH, PC • STYLE 1 OR 2-PLAYER PLATFORMING • PUBLISHER SEGA • DEVELOPER HEADCANNON, PAGODAWEST • RELEASE AUGUST 15 nnounced in July of last year as a throwback to the classic games from the Genesis days, Sonic Mania has repeatedly impressed fans. With a mix of new zones and classics from Sonic’s past, Mania aims to be an authentic take on the series’ glory days with some modern twists thrown in for good measure. You can play through each stage as Sonic, Tails, or Knuckles, and each character gives you new ways to explore. With Tails’ flight abilities sonic mania A and Knuckles’ glide-and-climb combo, the levels take advantage of their individual capabilities. For example, some paths can only be reached by Tails, while others require Knuckles’ brute strength to break through a wall. We’ve previously seen Green Hill Zone from Sonic the Hedgehog and Flying Battery Zone from Sonic & Knuckles, and the year’s E3 brought news of another beloved throwback stage mak-ing its return. Chemical Plant Zone, perhaps the hot 50 most popular zone in Sonic 2, has been added to Mania’s roster of stages. Much like Green Hill and Flying Battery, Chemical Plant is far from a copy-and-paste job. The first act feels similar to the way the stage played in Sonic 2, with a familiar layout and stage elements that don’t stray far from the original formula. However, once you enter act 2, the differences become more evi-dent. In addition to a remixed version of Chemical Plant’s theme, new elements are introduced.