Welp, this is the final game of the Sonic Storybook series…like anyone gave a crap. So last time I took a look at Sonic and the Secret Rings, and whilst it was not that bad, it was still not fun to play and a game I doubt I will touch again. But Sega still thought that making a sequel will prove to be successful…it wasn’t the case. So, who’s ready for Sonic battling King Arthur? Once again, NOBODY!
Sonic and the Black Knight (ソニックと暗黒の騎士 Sonikku to Ankoku no Kishi), developed by Sonic Team and published by Sega, it was released in 2009 worldwide.
Merlina, granddaughter of the original Merlin, is running away from a corrupted King Arthur. Merlina decides to summon a warrior that can defeat him…and out drops Sonic from nowhere. Merlina explains that King Arthur became evil after gaining immortality gained by the scabbard of Excalibur. Sonic cannot defeat the King with his mere speed alone (which makes Sonic’s gimmick pointless in this story doesn’t it), as he grabs the sword from the stone, Caliburn…and it talks…OK…well at least he isn’t annoying. So Sonic must practice his skills long enough to defeat King Arthur, by defeating Arthur’s Knights of the Round Table…albeit Shadow, Knuckles and Blaze, and with the help of Lady of the Lake, Nimue (played by Amy Rose), Sonic will finally come to a realisation of a twist that I won’t tell you. Oh, and this is the first game in which Dr. Eggman isn’t the villain, or even makes an appearance.
In terms of everything else, it’s similar to the previous game with some massive changes. Sonic’s movement is now controlled by you thanks to the nunchuck; OK, that’s good, although it’s a little restrictive, mostly going forward and backward but I’ll take it, and then the main crux of the game, the sword fighting…OK, whilst it’s not that bad, at all, you just swing your Wii Remote…and voilà, you’ve just mastered the entire game, I mean sure, you have Soul Surge which will instantly defeat enemies should you have enough red fairies to use it. But other than that, it’s way too simple.
In terms of levels, it’s near enough the same as the Secret Rings and I would moan about it again if it wasn’t for the fact that this game didn’t take long to beat. Sure you have your normal levels of getting to the goal and the tutorial levels at the beginning. There are missions that work like the previous game but at least isn’t frustrating, they include giving money to townspeople by playing a mini-game…don’t ask me why, defeat a certain amount of enemies, etc. Either way, the missions are much easier to beat so it’s an OK incentive to just plough through it.
In terms of townspeople, they exist in the game and you can either protect them by giving them rings, or just injure them. What you do will determine “Knight’s Honor Bonus”. Help the townspeople and your bonus will increase, but injuring them will decrease it. You will also gain items, some aren’t too important but others will benefit you during the game. By the way, there are 247 items you can collect…nah, I ain’t collecting them all.
The game is better than the Secret Rings but the problem with this game is that the sword mechanics are so baron and swinging the remote is your only dominant strategy and even if you get hit or die, you can try again, there’s no lives or game over, maybe shield yourself next time then swing away, there’s nothing to this game, it’s pointless…fun, in a surprising note, apart from the second King Arthur boss, f*** that boss.
The graphics are good for the Wii and the level design works with the gameplay this time round, but only because the gameplay is overly simple. The music is actually much better, I even like the main menu music…which is “We Wish You a Merry Christmas” played on guitar, but it’s nice, in fact, it’s probably a song that I could play next Christmas, it really feels like something I could listen to in the holidays.
Overall, Sonic and the Black Knight, whilst fun in a few ways, is a near empty experience and only becomes challenging when it comes to the bosses, I wish we thought some more dragons but…well at least it’s something…actually, the gameplay becomes interesting when it comes to the bosses, it’s just that you have to plough through gameplay that you may enjoy or bore the heck out of you. I’m comfortable enough in recommending this game over Secret Rings.
You can get it on the Wii.