Espio: Way of the Ninja is the third Challenge Act of Seaside Hill Act 1 in the HD version of Sonic Generations. It is unlocked after clearing every Stage in the Dreamcast era and is playable only as Classic Sonic.
This Challenge Act includes a large section of Seaside Hill Act 1, starting from the entrance into the sea palace, but with grapple points affixed overhead. When within range of the grabble points, press and hold / to call Espio. He will then grab Sonic and use a rope to swing them across. Tilt the control left and right to make them swing back and forth. Release / during a swing to make the pair fly to the next spot. The mission is filled with regular Egg Pawns (some of which carry Egg Guns), spike traps, and Time Bonuses.
The Act starts out with a pretty straightforward section, with two Dash Rings at the end which lead to the next section (although the higher one has a Time Bonus atop it). In the second section, the player can either summon Espio to take a shortcut above, or go down through the underwater route. In the next section, the Choppers normally seen in the Seaside Hill Act 1 have been replaced with Spinners. This section also includes more Egg Pawns and platforms which break upon contact. At the end of this section are Cannons that serve as shortcuts.
As the player approaches the end of this Act, they must swing directly from one grapple point to another over a large gap, and then fly from the final grapple point over a tall column with spikes to reach the Goal Plate. If the player falls on the wrong side of the column, they must grapple onto the last point and swing on it with enough momentum to fly over the column.
- A safe way to gain momentum while attached to a rope is to swing back and leave the grapple point, and then hold / again while facing the direction the player wants to go to. This gives the player a quick boost in the direction they want to jump in.