Sega is dropping the prices of a few of their iconic blue hedgehog's iOS games. Currently, both Sonic The Hedgehog [$2.99] and Sonic The Hedgehog 2 [$2.99] can be had for just 99¢ each, down from their normal price of $2.99. These aren't simply ports of the early-90s Sega Genesis games either. These are the excellent remastered versions which both arrived as free updates to the iOS originals last year. Both games have been rebuilt from the ground up for mobile touchscreen devices and include some amazing new features like extra playable characters, Game Center leaderboards and achievements, Time Attack modes, and in the case of Sonic 2 even a long-lost, never before released zone. They're both absolute masterpieces and if you somehow don't own them already I can't stress enough how hard you should jump on this 99¢ sale. Here's our exhaustive review of Sonic 2, most of which applies to the remaster of Sonic 1 as well, in case you need some more convincing.
The other part of the "Sonic Sale" that's currently taking place is Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed [Free] going free. Normally this would be a Freebie Alert of the highest magnitude, but in this case it's not so much of a temporary freebie as it is just the game switching over to a permanent free to play model. Not surprising to many who had been expecting this to happen since the game's original launch back in January. The thing is though, Sonic Racing Transformed is good. Like really good. It was even good as a paid title, and those who did pay for the game were given the $4.99 VIP Pack IAP for free. So in a way Sonic Racing Transformed hasn't really changed at all, except now it's initially free and doesn't come with that VIP pack included. Also, those who paid for the game originally will not be shown ads, which are now part of the free to play switchover.
The game always had kind of an interesting pay model anyway. Basically, it would cost coins to race in any of the game's races, and should you run out of those coins you'd need to grind some earlier races and earn more or buy some via IAP. Alternatively, you could purchase a "full unlock" IAP which removed the need to spend coins on races altogether. It was Sega's attempt at a "best of both worlds" approach to the wacky world of mobile game pricing and, at least personally, I thought it was just fine. Some folks however didn't love the pay model, and this switch to fully free to play isn't going to change their minds. But, if you are a fan of Sonic Racing Transformed, you'll be happy to know that new characters Wreck-It Ralph and Metal Sonic are coming in an update next week, as are new racetracks OutRun Bay and Galactic Paradise. There will also be two new modes, Boss Cup Challenge and World Tour, as part of that same update which arrives on April 29th.
Hopefully the switch to free and lowering the barrier of entry to Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed will increase the pool of players online. If you missed out on grabbing it previously, there's no reason not to check it out now that it's free, as it really is the best kart racer on the App Store. And if you don't own Sonic The Hedgehog 1 or 2 yet, definitely rectify that while those games are on sale for 99¢.