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Episode 6: Shadow the Hedgehog Reloaded





Note, this writeup covers the mod Shadow the Hedgehog: Reloaded and these thoughts will not be indicative of your experience playing the game unmodified.

Shadow the Hedgehog, my what a game you are. The controversial spinoff meant to take the Sonic universe in a darker, edgier direction ended ironically enough leaving a black spot on the legacy of Sonic, but of Shadow as a character in general. But that was 2005, and since then... things are a bit different.

We are looking forward to the furtherance of this game's lore, or a return to the more ambiguously righteous depiction of Shadow with the impending Sonic x Shadow Generations. But that's all in hindsight, all in the wake of the Sonic games that came as an after effect of this game's reception.

So to hell with merely "looking back" on the game, let's really delve into it and PLAY the game and see if it actually holds up as well as our insistence to see more of it fleshed out in other stories.

...By playing a mod that sets out to make the game better. So yeah, that's a bit counterproductive, but to hell if I'm playing this game in its base state.

So let this be a rundown of the changes you can expect when playing Shadow Reloaded, than a review of the game itself. Cause the changes here can fundamentally change your enjoyment of the game.


Cause yes, as you all would know, beating this game in its normal state requires you to get all 10 endings. What you'd probably do is beat a route on the pathway, play the same route twice, all to do the other ending option. That's tedious as hell. Luckily, Shadow Reloaded does away with this but instead only requires doing 5 endings of your choice. This makes the game SO much more manageable and mitigates a lot of the tedium.

That isn't to say there isn't incentive to do all 10 endings. Each ending either gets you a special weapon you can find in Shadow crates throughout levels, or upgrades them with more damage, ammo, effectiveness, etc. And there are some pretty great guns all around.


In fact that best thing about Shadow the Hedgehog is the gunplay. Like it or not, Homing Attacking and taking down Badniks is sure to slow you down when speedrunning through levels. Easily mowing down bad guys without a care in the world with an assault rifle with really active auto lockon helps maintain the pace of the level. Tether this with what I swear is refined physics to feel less slippery, and this game doesn't control as badly as I remember it. But I can't recall if this is a Reloaded upgrade, or found in the base game. Still make note of it though.


Another big change to Shadow Reloaded is the tweaked objectives. No longer will you be micromanaging levels looking for every single target to reach the end of a level, cause the requirements are shortened substantially. This makes even the most tedious levels a lot more of a casual stroll, as you'll probably reach your objective as long as you push forward and shoot what comes in your way.

Of course, not every tweak will save a level. The ARK stages and Central City are still a nightmare, but many other stages greatly benefit and speed up the gameplay from feeling TOO monotonous.

Plus, with the benefit of the mod being widescreen, you have more of your surroundings in your field of view, allowing for better awareness of potential targets to complete an objective.

These major adjustments make Shadow the Hedgehog... kind of a fun time, not gonna lie. I still wouldn't exactly call the game great, and I hesitate to even say inherently GOOD, there are just too many design, aesthetic and story decisions that hold the game back still. But I can safely say Reloaded made the game FUN.

I will say this though as when I went back to other levels out of sheer curiousity... you'll probably play this on an emulator so I want you to enable one cheat at all times: Infinite Ammo.

Playing the game without having to worry about losing ammo makes the game even more fun as it hones in on the mayhem and destruction that being the Ultimate Lifeform comes with. So keep that in mind.

But otherwise, yeah. This wasn't half bad. If you need a refresher before going into this year's new Sonic entry, this mod is the superior way to experience Shadow's first solo outing.







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