The first release of Sonic Adventure back in 1998 was of a revolutionary scale in comparison to the games that came before it. The power of the Dreamcast allowed for a bigger, faster and better looking adventure never before seen that reinstated Sonic as the coolest games character.
By 2003, after the various machinations at Sega and inside the gaming world, Sonic had made a stable home for himself on Nintendoís GameCube. Sonic Team decide to release the game that brought our blue hero back from obscurity.
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The re-release was also to include some additional features that were dropped from the Dreamcast original due to time constraints as well as bug fixes and other problems. Sonic Adventure DX: The Directors Cut was the final product and was released on Gamecube in June 2003 and a PC version following several months later.
Unfortunately it scored low as the game did not play as well as the Dreamcast original and Sega/Sonic Team seemingly wasted an opportunity to fix an otherwise great game.
Sonic Adventure DX is an identical port of the Dreamcast version right down to the majority of the glitches that plagued that version. The actual game remains unchanged. Sonic and other characters roam Adventure Fields to progress the game through to the Action Stages.
What earns the game itís DX is a handful of extra features and bug fixes that are apparently somewhere in the game.
Graphically the game has improved marginally. The colours are very bright and the characters have slightly more detail thanks to some more polygons. One of the major moans of the Dreamcast original was the framerate. Unfortunately this still hits anywhere between 15-60 as opposed to a solid 60. Somewhat disappointing considering how much more powerful the GameCube is.
There is a little more voice over work to be heard around the various menus.
The camera angle can now be manipulated by using the C analogue stick. Your options are Free or Auto. The latter is the default and gives you the first-person perspective. Setting to Free gives you a view of the surroundings of the character.
Your tasks in Adventure Fields are now assisted with a map function so you know where you are and/or going.
Another inclusion is Metal Sonic as a playable character. He will have to be unlocked though which happens when you collect all 130 Emblems and only then heís playable in the Trial mode. He has all of Sonicís skills (special moves) and can play through all his trial levels.
A minor inclusion is that Cream the Rabbit can be glimpsed in Station Square leading up to your trip to Ice Cap. She hangs around the Ice Crystal Key and just gives Sonic something pretty to look at.
The Chao Mini-game has had several enhancements made to it. The Gardens are slightly bigger with a little redesign. The Black Market is now accessible from the Station Square Garden.
If you have a Gameboy Advance and the connecting lead along with any game that feature Chao no Puchi Garden you can travel with your pet Chao. By sending your Chaos to a GBA without a cartridge and you can play a special mini-game in which Cheese sends Sonic to search for particular Chao within a time limit. Hint orbs prompt Tikal to give you info on where to find that Chao. Cheese will reward you with rings for the Chao.
The showcase mode contains range of Missions for a character when the game has been completed in his or her name. These are a series of goals to be accomplished in both Adventure Fields and Action Stages. In the characters Adventure Field look for mission cards. Some are easily visible whereas others need to be found. The card will have a number and a hint of what needs to be performed. When a mission is complete you will earn an emblem.
Probably the major inclusion with this version is the mini-games. For every 10 emblems that you collect in the main adventure or by completing the missions you unlock Sonicís Game Gear games - all 12 in the library including Japanese and US versions.
One clever feature is that during a game a second controller can be plugged in and another window is opened. By pressing start and selecting split screen. Any games that sport Game Gear linkage will be synchronised for games with versus mode.
The game plays at full screen which can be adjusted to something more pleasant looking by using the L and R triggers. For some of these games the Master System equivalents may have been a better choice.
Game Gear games in order of unlock.
Sonic The Hedgehog
Sonic Chaos (or Sonic and Tails)
Sonic The Hedgehog 2
Dr Robotnikís Mean Bean Machine
Sonic and Tails 2 (Sonic Chaos 2/Triple Trouble)
Sonic Drift 2
Tailsí Sky Patrol
These are bought to you via a Game Gear emulator from VR-1 Japan; the company who developed Sonic Mega Collection.
Sonic's Adventure DX
6 months after the release of the Game Cube version the game was released on the PC. This is an identical port but benefits slightly from a PC's hardware with sharper graphics and more solid framerate.
Requirements are Windows 98/Me and XP (though Windows 2000 should work) with DirectX9 (Direct3D) compatible video and sound cards with min 128MB RAM. A CD/DVD Drive and approx 600MB hard disk space.