Last week, the third game in the Sonic Boom series reached physical and digital stores. It appears that Sanzaru Games have learned quite a lot from Sonic Boom Shattered Crystal, and they have created an enjoyable experience that fans of the Sonic franchise should definitely take for a spin. The story this time around focuses on Sonic and friends dealing with the effects of earthquakes caused by the antics of Dr Eggman and a mysterious robot known as D-Fekt. If you are wondering how to begin to play Sonic Boom Fire & Ice, here are a few tips to get you running around at the speed of sound.
1. Master The Elements
During the beginning of the game, Sonic and his friends gain the ability to harness both the elements of Fire and Ice. This is more than just a party piece, as several of the puzzles in each level rely on you changing your active element on the fly. Both of the elements have been mapped to the Left and Right shoulder button, so the transition is an easy one to complete.
If you run into an ice cube during one of the levels, simply press the Left shoulder button to activate the Fire element, then you will simply run straight through it. If you come across a shimmering transparent cube with a snowflake, press the Right shoulder button to activate the Ice element, and every water platform you touch will become solid in mere moments.
2. Choose Your Friends
Like in Sonic Boom Shattered Crystal, you are given the choice of playing as Sonic, and all four of his friends from the cartoon series. His two tailed fox friend Tails in included in the lineup, as well as Knuckles the Echidna, Amy Rose and the Boom exclusive sidekick that is Sticks the Badger. Changing your active character is more than just a cosmetic affair, as each hero has a unique talent they can use aside from the newly acquired elemental powers.
Tails has the ability to hover, and can use his pistol to fire beams of light that are reflected by certain obstacles, ideal for solving Portal style puzzles. Knuckles the Echidna can use his large fists and enhanced body strength to break through tougher obstacles such as stone walls. Amy Rose has her trademark hammer, and can raise and lower specific platforms by spinning it around. Finally, Sticks the Badger can use her boomerang to hit out of reach switches and distant enemies.
3. Look At This Stuff
In every stage, you can collect hidden items whilst you go for the goal. These range from pieces of trading cards, that when stuck together from a larger image, and items which have a particular significance to a particular character. For example, you can collect hammers which can be used by Amy, and coiled springs which can be used by Tails.
You can also collect a precious substance known as Ragnium, which is a crystallised power source that is sought by Dr Eggman. Defeating enemies during the levels earns you more Ragnium, as well as completing certain time sensitive challenges where you must collect eight items before they disappear. You can also earn these crystals by reaching the target score, ring count and completion time for each area.
4. Swing Into Action
Like in Rise of Lyric and Shattered Crystal, at certain points during the levels you will need to navigate across larger gaps using levitating hook points. Thankfully, each character is equipped with a device on their wrist known as an Enerbeam, which releases a glowing plasma beam that connects to the hooks, allowing you to swing across safely.
In order to use the devices, simply get within range, and press the A button. You will not need to hold it down to continue the swing, but you cannot change direction once you have started. So if you want to go in the opposite direction, be sure to wait until you are free from the current swing in order to go back to where you came from.
5. Boss Come Tumbling Down
Like the Sonic Rush series which arrived in 2005, Sonic Boom Fire & Ice has boss battles which are so vast that go across both screens. Unlike the other areas of the game, you cannot choose the character that you play as during each phase. On the plus side, it means that you can always be sure to how to take advantage of each enemy’s weak point.
In the first boss level, which takes place on the first island of the game, you will need to switch between Sonic and Amy. As well as using their unique powers, it is necessary to tap into the powers of Fire and Ice to take down a gigantic totem figure which has been possessed by D. Fekt. As Amy, you will need to use her hammer to lower the guardian down, and then you are switched to Sonic. Along with his Ice ability, simply jump up the platforms and knock the villain on the head.
Hope these short tips help you get to grips with the latest adventure starring the blue blur. Sonic Boom Fire & Ice is now available on Nintendo 3DS, both on the Nintendo eShop and at retail stores for £34.99. If you are interesting in seeing more about the game, be sure to visit the official game page on the Nintendo website, and watch the launch trailer that we reported on when the game was released.