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Sonic the Hedgehog 4: Episode I is a 2010 episodic platform video game in the Sonic the Hedgehog series. The game was developed by Dimps, with assistance from Sonic Team, and published by Sega. The game was intended to emulate the original Sonic the Hedgehog titles on the Sega Genesis.
Episode I was released in October 2010 for iOS, PlayStation Network, WiiWare and Xbox Live Arcade. A release for Windows Phone 7 followed in June 2011, for PC (via Steam) and Android in January 2012, for BlackBerry PlayBook in July 2012, and for Ouya in July 2013. A direct follow-up, Sonic the Hedgehog 4: Episode II, was released in 2012.
Sonic the Hedgehog 4: Episode I is a 2D side-scrolling platformer reminiscent of the original Sonic games for the Sega Mega Drive/Genesis. Players control Sonic the Hedgehog, using mechanics such as the original Spin Dash and power-ups such as shields, invincibility and speed shoes. Sonic is also able to use a homing attack, which homes in on a targeted enemy or object.
Unlike the first three classic Sonic games, after completing the first act, the player is able to freely choose which zone to play via a world map, or choose to play the zones sequentially. Each of the four zones contain three acts, followed by a separate boss battle act, rather than the boss being included at the end of the third act. Each boss act is unlocked by completing all three acts in that zone. The boss battles, similar to the zones themselves, are inspired by the boss battles from older Sonic titles, although there are variations. Once all acts and boss battles within each zone are cleared, players gain access to a fifth and final zone.
Special Stages in Episode I, accessed by finishing an act with at least 50 rings and then jumping into the Giant Ring that appears at the end of the stage, are based on the "Special Stages" in the original Sonic the Hedgehog. The player must tilt the playing field in order to navigate Sonic through a maze within a set time limit, collecting rings to open gates and time bonuses along the way, with the goal of each stage being to collect a Chaos Emerald.
Video Review and Screenshots
Sonic the Hedgehog 4: Episode I System Requirements
- Operating System: Microsoft Windows XP / 7
- Processor: Pentium 4 3.2 GHz or Athlon 64 3000+
- RAM: 2 GB
- Video Card: 256 MB NVIDIA GeForce 7600 or AT Radeon X1300
- Hard disk space: 500 MB