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The best Sonic game is free to keep in Sega's big birthday sale

Iconic PC gaming mascot Sonic T. Hedgehog.

Listen. With Sega basically becoming an RTS publishing giant, Sonic The Hedgehog is retroactively a PC gaming mascot. Sorry, them's the rules. To help you get on board with our sassy, spikey new overlord, 1992's Sonic The Hedgehog 2 - the best one - is free to keep forever on Steam if you pick it up before October 19th.

Turns out, it's Sega's 60th birthday this month. To celebrate, the Japenese publisher is having a blow-out sale over on Steam. While that means some very good games like Total War: Warhammer and Alien: Isolation are going for a fraction of the price, the highlight of the event is naturally the giveaway of 1992 sequel and series high-point Sonic The Hedgehog 2.

As Alice O correctly noted in the RPS treehouse, Sonic 2 is the best of the lot. An improvement on the first game's answer to Italian plumbers, but too early to be bogged down by later games' obsession with attitude and the growing cast of Sonny's weird pals. Of course, none of this is coloured by the fact that it was probably the first videogame I ever played. Nope.

The Steam version is simply an emulated copy of the Mega Drive (Genesis for you yanks) original, and as such doesn't flaunt too many fancy features. Adding a quicksave feature is nice, at least. If you're not quite up for stepping back 28 years in time, Sonic Mania is currently 75% off, and offers a proper good reinterpretation of many of 2's levels with all the modern trimmings.

Sonic 2 is free to keep until October 19th, when the Sega sale ends. The pubs are also offering a free weekend for Total War: Warhammer 2, with 66% off should you fancy continuing the strategy bloodbath.

Disclosure: I briefly worked for Sega as a functionality tester on Alien: Isolation. It was 6 years ago and only lasted a month, but you can thank me every time you throw a molotov that doesn't send you no-clipping off into space.

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