Sonic and the Black Knight

 
Speedy hedgehog's decent story marred by shoddy controls.

What parents need to know

Positive messages

Sonic is out the save the world from the corrupted King Arthur. Along the way, he philosophizes that there must be more to life than simply serving a king.

Violence

Even thought Sonic and his cohorts wield massive swords, face off against knights of old, and fight enemies with lances and crossbows, the enemies simply disappear in a whimsical smoke when vanquished.

Sex
Not applicable
Language
Not applicable
Consumerism

Sonic is a franchise of characters, comic books, video games, and television shows. This game furthers the commercialism of the Sonic brand.

Drinking, drugs, & smoking
Not applicable

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that this is the second game in the Sonic Storybook Series, which means it takes Sonic on an adventure through a classic tale, but with a twist. This is not your typical fast-paced, collect-rings-as-Sonic-dashes by game. This tale of corruption due to too much power features a lot of fantasy violence with enchanted swordplay, but the action is usually so fast and furious it's tough to get a feel for exactly what is happening onscreen. The game does offer an online mode, which amounts to leader boards for challenge levels. Also, a local only multiplayer mode offers up to four players battles, or co-operative play to fight some in-game characters.

What's it about?

SONIC AND THE BLACK KNIGHT is a departure from the classic side scrolling Sonic series that adults have known for decades. This time around, Sonic is transported from his world into the world of King Arthur, who has been corrupted by the absolute power of Excalibur. It's up to Sonic and his friends to save the world from the evil that has come out of the enchanted sword and face off with an ultimate baddie, the Dark Queen.

The game is broken up into very small segments of gaming lasting anywhere from one minute to upwards of ten. These segments have Sonic moving forward at a high rate of speed, slicing and dicing enemies on his way to a goal marker at the end of the level. The bite-sized gaming segments usually end with a short movie that helps advance the plot forward – making the game to video ratio quite low. The player collects and identifies various items that are stored in a treasury viewable from the main menu. Some of these items can be used in game to boost certain attributes, while others are there to trade with friends who also own the game and have shared Wii Friend codes.

Is it any good?

QUALITY
 

The story segments of the game help drive the title forward, but the gaming segments are quite short and could leave older kids slightly disappointed with the lack of action. Objectives in levels range from giving coins to villagers via a sequence of button presses, to simply making it to the end of a short obstacle filled path. While moving through the levels, Sonic can move forward at a quick pace through a predetermined path – with only slight variations of positon on the track. In later levels, multiple paths do open up offering a little more choice.

Unfortunately, Sonic is quite tough to control. Swinging the Wii Remote to control the sword sounds fine in theory, but in practice the imperfect motion controls can cause players to miss enemies and open themselves to attacks. Even something as simple as the left and right positional movement on the otherwise static paths is almost always fatally flawed; and any sense of speed gets lost due to this buggy control scheme. Even diehard Sonic fans might want to rent versus buy.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about the tale of King Arthur and his knights as well as Merlin the Wizard. What is it about this story that makes it so popular? What about the notion of magical swords that grant power? Do these stories translate well to video games? Or is Sonic the Hedgehog best left in his own world of ring-collecting and fighting Dr. Robotnic?

Game details

Platforms:Nintendo Wii
Price:$49.99
Available online?Available online
Developer:Sega of America
Release date:March 12, 2009
Genre:Action/Adventure
ESRB rating:E10+ for Fantasy Violence (Nintendo Wii)

This review of Sonic and the Black Knight was written by

Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are conducted by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.

Quality

Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

Find out more

Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

Find out more

About our buy links

When you use our links to make a purchase, Common Sense Media earns a small affiliate fee from Amazon or iTunes. As a nonprofit organization, these funds help us continue providing independent, ad-free services for educators, families, and kids while the price you pay remains the same. Thank you for your support.
Read more

See more about how we rate and review.

About Our Rating System

The age displayed for each title is the minimum one for which it's developmentally appropriate. We recently updated all of our reviews to show only this age, rather than the multi-color "slider." Get more information about our ratings.

What parents and kids say

See all user reviews

Share your thoughts with other parents and kids Write a user review

A safe community is important to us. Please observe our guidelines

Teen, 13 years old Written byMariosonicfan7654321 November 24, 2012
age 12+
 
LEARNING

Good game.

Sega's mascot enters Arthurian kingdom,somewhat great for learning because the "Collections" section has a few books about King Arthur.Some violence,not for young kids.
Teen, 15 years old Written byreviewerdudeguy2 November 23, 2010
age 9+
 

ok.....

3 stars are mainly for short story and low combos. Other wise, game is pretty good. The sword isnt bad but i dont like that it deviates from the original style of play.
What other families should know
Great messages
Great role models
Adult Written byChrisH. November 25, 2014
age 15+
 
What other families should know
Too much violence
Too much swearing

Poll

Did our review help you make an informed decision about this product?

Digital Compass