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E3ED11

Classic Sonic receiving an S Rank in Sonic Forces.

The Rank[1] is a mechanic that appears in the Sonic the Hedgehog series. It is a grading system used to measure how well the player performed in a particular event of a game, the most common being completing a level or boss fight.

Description

In the Sonic the Hedgehog series, Ranks are represented as letter-grades. While the specific grade letters vary in range from game to game, they typically range from S or A to D or E. They are awarded based on how well the player performed after completing a particular event in a game. This can be something like completing a level or mission. Ranks are usually given alongside the score, and is often based on the player's score, which is influenced by common gameplay factors such as the number of Rings collected, time taken to finish the event, number of enemies defeated, the tricks pulled off, etc.. Some games though have certain levels and missions where Ranks are not awarded based on score alone, and may only be based on one or more gameplay factors, such as the time taken to complete an event. In games where the playable characters are present on the result screen, they will strike a different pose and/or give a comment based on the Rank the player got.

Usually, the player has to attain the highest rank (usually an "A" or "S") for some or all level missions of a game in order to receive rewards (like Emblems) or special bonuses, unlock new gameplay features, or obtain game achievements/trophies.

Rank list (in order)

The following list of letter grades used in the Sonic the Hedgehog games, listed from highest to lowest. The most commonly used ranks are in bold.

  • X Rank: Violet colored/Yellow colored (Sonic Riders games only)
  • SS/S+ Rank: Brass colored (Sonic Riders games only)
  • S Rank: Aqua colored/Platinum colored/Gold colored
  • AA/A+ Rank: Cyan colored/Purple colored (Sonic Riders games only)
  • A Rank: Gold colored/Purple colored/Red colored
  • B Rank: Silver colored/Red colored/Green colored
  • C Rank: Bronze colored/Yellow colored/Blue colored
  • D Rank: Steel colored/Green colored/Light Blue colored
  • E Rank: Rusty metal colored/Blue colored
  • F Rank: Purple colored (This was supposed to appear in Sonic Heroes, but it later got scrapped, so the E Rank is currently the lowest of them all.)

Game appearances

Sonic Adventure 2

SonicAdventure2 DC ResultsScreen

The result screen in Sonic Adventure 2.

Ranks were first featured in Sonic Adventure 2, and later its remake Sonic Adventure 2: Battle, where they are given for Mission results. In this game, Ranks range from A to E. For Missions 1, 4 and 5 of every stage (except Route 101 and Route 280), the Rank is determined by the score, but if the player obtains every Ring in a stage and clears it, the player is awarded an automatic A-Rank. For Missions 2 and 3 of every stage, the Rank is based on the time taken to complete it.

The player is required to earn an A-Rank in every Mission in order to obtain all Emblems and unlocking extra bonuses for the 2P Battle mode. It also unlocks the "You Are The Legend" Achievement/Trophy in the 2012 HD port.

Sonic Heroes

SonicHeroesARank

The result screen in Sonic Heroes.

In Sonic Heroes, Ranks range from A to E. In this game, Ranks are given for stage/mission results. Score-based Ranks are given for all teams' first Missions and all of Team Sonic and Team Chaotix's Extra Missions while time-based Ranks are given for boss fights and all Extra Missions for Team Dark and Team Rose.

The player is required to obtain an A-Rank of every stage/Mission in the game to unlock Super Hard Mode. Ranks are also not recorded for completing the Sea Gate or the Super Hard Mode stages. In addition, the game's save files display the number of stages/Missions the player has an A Rank on.

Shadow the Hedgehog

In Shadow the Hedgehog, Ranks range from A to E. In this game, score-based Ranks are featured in every stage mission while time-based Ranks are featured for every boss battle. Scoring high for one alignment will reduce the Rank achieved for the other alignment (e.g. getting a high Hero score will result in an automatic E-Rank for the Dark mission and vice versa). The score for Neutral missions on the other hand will count to both alignments. If the player gets an A-Rank for every stage, Expert Mode will be unlocked.

Sonic Rush series

Sonic Rush

In Sonic Rush, Ranks range from S to C. In this game, Ranks are given for Act and boss results, and are based on the player's score after those events.

Sonic Rush Adventure

In Sonic Rush Adventure, Ranks range from S to C. In this game, Ranks are given for Act and boss results, and are based on the player's score after those events. In addition, the better the Rank the player gets, the more Materials they will receive after clearing an Act or boss fight (not including Hidden Islands or Deep Core).

Sonic Riders series

Sonic Riders

In Sonic Riders, the Ranks include grades X, SS, S, AA, A, B, and C. In this game, Ranks are rewarded differently. Rather than being given when a player clears a level or mission, the player is given Ranks when the playable character pulls off a Trick Action after setting off from ramps. The higher the Rank the playable character gets, the more Air the player will be rewarded with. In this installment, the Rank is based on how many Trick Actions the player pulls off after being launched into midair. However, if the playable character makes a bad landing from the jump (eg. landing while in the middle of performing a Trick Action), they will automatically get a C-Rank. The game also features the Legend Extreme Gear which makes earning high Ranks easier.

Aside from the Ranking mentioned above, Sonic Riders also feature a mission-based gameplay where the player is ranked based on how well they performed. Each mission has three different ranks: Bronze, Silver and Gold. If the player gets the highest Rank in all the missions, they will earn the Chaos Emerald.

Sonic Riders: Zero Gravity

In Sonic Riders: Zero Gravity, the Ranks include grades X, SS, S, AA, A, B, and C. In this game, Ranks are, much like in Sonic Riders, given when the playable character executes a Trick Action. The higher the Rank the playable character gets, the more Gravity Points the player will be rewarded with. This time around, the Rank is based on the timing of the jump prompt for the Trick Action at the moment the player gets launched. The game also features the Legend Extreme Gear which makes earning high Ranks easier. In addition, the game also feature a unique sound effect whenever an X-Rank Trick is performed.

Aside from the Ranking mentioned above, Sonic Riders: Zero Gravity also feature a mission-based gameplay where the player is ranked based on how well they performed. Each mission has three different ranks: Normal, Super and Extreme. If the player gets the highest Rank in all the missions, they will earn the Chaos Emerald.

Sonic Free Riders

In Sonic Free Riders, the Ranks include grades X, S+, S, A+, A, B, and C. Like in earlier Sonic Riders installments, Ranks are given when the playable character executes a Trick. The higher the Rank the playable character gets, the more Air the player will be rewarded with. Like in Sonic Riders: Zero Gravity, the Rank is based on the timing of the jump prompt for the Trick Action at the moment the player gets launched. The game also features the Legend Extreme Gear which makes earning high Ranks easier. In addition, the game also feature a unique sound effect whenever an X-Rank Trick is performed.

Aside from the Ranking mentioned above, Sonic Free Riders also feature a mission-based gameplay (which are required to be played as part of Grand Prix Mode) where the player is ranked based on how well they performed. Each mission has three different ranks: B, A and S. If the player gets the highest Rank in all the missions, they will earn the Chaos Emeralds.

Sonic the Hedgehog (2006)

In Sonic the Hedgehog (2006), Ranks range from S to D. In this game, Ranks are given for Action Stage, Boss, and Town Mission results, and are based on the player's score after those events. In the Story Mode, the player also earns additional Rings based on the Rank they receive. The player is required to obtain S-Ranks across all Mission to unlock achievements in the Xbox 360 version of the game.

Sonic Rivals series

Sonic Rivals

In Sonic Rivals, Ranks range from S to C. In this game, Ranks are given for every Act and boss fight, and are based on the player's score after these events.

Sonic Rivals 2

In Sonic Rivals 2, Ranks range from S to C. In this game, Ranks are given for every Act and boss fight, and are based on the player's score after these events. In addition, in order to earn some cards, it is required by the player to achieve an S-Rank in specific Acts and Act 2 Battle modes.

Sonic Unleashed

In the Wii/PlayStation 2 version of Sonic Unleashed, Ranks range from S to C. In this version of the game, Ranks are given for every level and boss fight. They are awarded based on the player's clear time in daytime stages, and on the player's time, Rings and amassed Dark Gaia Force in the nighttime stages. In the daytime stages in particular, the game's HUD displays the par time the player is required to finish the stage within to obtain a particular Rank starting with the S and if the time has elapsed beyond the threshold for S, the HUD will switch to display the par time for A and so on for the remaining Ranks.

In the Xbox 360/PlayStation 3 version of Sonic Unleashed, Ranks range from S to E. In this version of the game, Ranks are given for Act and boss results, and are based on the player's score after these events. If the player gets an E rank, "Results Screen - E Rank", an intentionally bad rendition of the normal result screen music track, will play. Getting S-Ranks are also needed to obtain a number of the game's trophies/achievements.

Sonic and the Black Knight

In Sonic and the Black Knight, Ranks are present, but they do not use letter grades. Instead, it uses a star rating, with the number of stars determining its rank (one being the lowest and five being the highest).

Sonic Colors

In the Wii version of Sonic Colors, Ranks range from S to D. In this version of the game, Ranks are given for Act and boss results, and are based on the player's score after these events. Finishing with an A-Rank or higher will award one or three 1-Ups respectively.

In the Nintendo DS version of Sonic Colors, Ranks range from S to D. In this version of the game, Ranks are given for Act and boss results, and are based on the player's score after these events. The number of White Wisps and Sonic's pose on the result screen will be determined by the player's Rank.

Sonic Generations

In the console/PC version of Sonic Generations, Ranks range from S to D. In this version of the game, Ranks are given for Act and boss results. In stage Acts, ranks are based on the player's score, which is calculated based on clear time and Rings. That alone however, will only give a Rank between A and D. Finishing an Act without losing a life will award a Perfect Clear bonus that raises the player's rank by one, which is the only way to get an S-Rank. In Challenge Acts on the other hand, Ranks are based on the player's clear time, and the Rank and its corresponding clear par time is displayed on the HUD. Getting S-Ranks are also needed to obtain a number of the game's trophies/achievements.

In Nintendo 3DS version of Sonic Generations, Ranks range from S to D. In this version of the game, Ranks are given for Act, boss and Special Stage results, and are based on the player's score after these events. Unlike the console/PC version of Sonic Generations, there is no Perfect Clear bonus.

Sonic Lost World

In the Wii U/PC version of Sonic Lost World, Ranks range from S to D. In this version of the game, Ranks are given for Zones. However, they only appear in Time Attack mode, where they are given based on the time taken to complete the Zone. During a playthrough of a Zone, the Rank is displayed alongside the par time the player needs to complete in order to obtain that Rank. Once the par time has being passed, the next lower Rank with its respective par time is shown in its place.

In the Nintendo 3DS version of Sonic Lost World, Ranks range from S to D. In this game, Ranks are given for Zone, boss and Special Stage results, and are based on the player's score after those events. In addition, the better the Rank the player gets, the more Materials they will receive after clearing a level or boss fight.

Sonic Forces

E3ED11

The "S" Rank given to Classic Sonic after completing a stage.

In Sonic Forces, Ranks range from S to D. In this version of the game, Ranks are given for stage results, and are based on the player's score after these events. In addition, one can complete Daily Missions to activate a Daily Mission Boost that will temporarily boost the amount of points given at the end of a stage, making it easier to get higher ranks.

Rank comments

Sonic Adventure 2

  • Sonic:
    • A: "[Whistles] That was cool!"
    • B: "Too easy! Piece of cake!"
    • C: "Just made it."
    • D: "Huh. No problem."
    • E: "Barely made it."
  • Tails:
    • A: "I did it, Sonic!"
    • B: "Very good."
    • C: "That was easy."
    • D: "That was a little tough!"
    • E: "I gotta do better next time."
  • Knuckles:
    • A: "Yeah! This is perfect!"
    • B: "Yeah, I feel good."
    • C: "Not too bad."
    • D: "Whew. That was tough."
    • E: "I have to try harder."
  • Shadow:
    • A: "Ultimate victory!"
    • B: "Hmm. Too easy for me."
    • C: "That wasn't so hard."
    • D: "Maybe I didn't try hard enough."
    • E: "I guess I'm not at full power here."
  • Eggman:
    • A: "Now you know why I am the best!"
    • B: "Hahaha! Piece of cake!"
    • C: "Hmm. That wasn't so difficult."
    • D: "I should have tried a little harder."
    • E: "That was too close."
  • Rouge:
    • A: "How was that? Perfect? Like me?"
    • B: "It's all too easy for me."
    • C: "Not too bad, I guess."
    • D: "I guess I took a little too much time."
    • E: "I'm ashamed to call myself a hunter!"

Sonic Heroes

  • Team Sonic:
    • Sonic:
      • A: "[Whistles]. That was tight!"
      • B: "Too easy!"
      • C: "Barely made it."
      • D: "Hm. No problem."
      • E: "Shoot. Not my day."
    • Tails:
      • A: "Sonic! Knuckles! We did it!"
      • B: "Not too shabby!"
      • C: "Guess that's that!"
      • D: "A bit tough!"
      • E: "We can do better..."
    • Knuckles
      • A: "Perfect!"
      • B: "Hmm. Not bad!"
      • C: "Guess that's about it!"
      • D: "I didn't use all my strength!"
      • E: "Just enough to pass."
  • Team Dark:
    • Shadow:
      • A: "Perfect as always!"
      • B: "Piece of cake."
      • C: "Just average."
      • D: "Not taking this seriously."
      • E: "What's wrong with me?"
    • Rouge:
      • A: "Perfect! As usual."
      • B: "Piece of cake."
      • C: "Mmm. Not bad."
      • D: "I can do better..."
      • E: "I'm ashamed to call myself a treasure hunter!"
    • Omega:
      • A: "I am Omega! The ultimate E-Series robot!"
      • B: "This proves my power!"
      • C: "Satisfactory level."
      • D: "Power balance adjustment needed."
      • E: "I couldn't even beat Gamma or Beta..."
  • Team Rose:
    • Amy:
      • A: "We're like awesome!"
      • B: "I just knew we could do it!"
      • C: "Just this will do..."
      • D: "Guess we could've tried harder."
      • E: "We couldn't even impress Sonic like this..."
    • Cream:
      • A: "I'm so happy, I want to tell everyone!"
      • B: "As long as we stay together, we can do anything!"
      • C: "Cheese, you did great too. Thank you!"
      • D: "That was pretty tough!"
      • E: "Disappointing..."
    • Big:
      • A: "Cause I'm super-duper happy!"
      • B: "That was good!"
      • C: "Not too bad, I guess."
      • D: "We should try to do better next time."
      • E: "I'm feeling a little blue..."
  • Team Chaotix:
    • Espio:
      • A: "Impossible feat! Ultimate ninja power!"
      • B: "Good job! Nothing more to be said."
      • C: "Not bad. No complaints."
      • D: "Be on guard! Focus, and prepare yourself."
      • E: "Insulting. Your training has been a waste of time."
    • Charmy:
      • A: "Awesome! Totally awesome!"
      • B: "No problem!"
      • C: "Not bad, don't you think?"
      • D: "Maybe we could've done a little better!"
      • E: "Ok, stop foolin' around!"
    • Vector:
      • A: "Perfect! The work of professionals, heh!"
      • B: "No complaints!"
      • C: "Not bad!"
      • D: "Maybe... this wasn't our day."
      • E: "Lackluster performance, I'd say."

Shadow the Hedgehog

Sonic the Hedgehog (2006)

  • Sonic:
    • S: "That was incredible!"
    • A: "Too easy! No sweat."
    • B: "Just made it."
    • C: "Hmph. No problem."
    • D: "Man! Today's not my day."
  • Tails:
    • S: "Great! I did it, Sonic!"
    • A: "An "A" effort!"
    • B: "Well, not bad!"
    • C: "I had a bit of trouble there."
    • D: "I've got to do better..."
  • Knuckles:
    • S: "Alright!"
    • A: "That felt good."
    • B: "Well, that wasn't too bad."
    • C: "Hmph. That took longer than I thought."
    • D: "Shoot! I still got a ways to go..."
  • Elise:
    • S: "I don't believe it!"
    • A: "I'm so happy."
    • B: "How was that?"
    • C: "I'm a bit tired."
    • D: "I need to try harder..."
  • Shadow:
    • S: "Perfect."
    • A: "Hm. Not even a challenge."
    • B: "Guess that was alright."
    • C: "Need to stay focused."
    • D: "Maybe I wasn't strong enough."
  • Rouge:
    • S: "What did you think of my beautiful technique?"
    • A: "For me, it was a piece of cake!"
    • B: "That was pretty good, I guess."
    • C: "I guess I took a bit too long."
    • D: "How can I call myself a treasure hunter?"
  • Omega:
    • S: "Perfect mission."
    • A: "Good performance."
    • B: "That was adequate."
    • C: "Expected time frame: not met."
    • D: "Has one of my systems broken down?"
  • Silver:
    • S: "Perfect!!!"
    • A: "Looks like I'm on a roll!"
    • B: "That was easy!"
    • C: "That took too long."
    • D: "I need to pull it together."
  • Blaze:
    • S: "Can't complain."
    • A: "All it takes is a little effort."
    • B: "That was so-so."
    • C: "I should have done better."
    • D: "That was weak."
  • Amy:
    • S: "Just perfect!"
    • A: "Aren't I just incredible?"
    • B: "Yay! I rock!"
    • C: "Phew. That was close."
    • D: "I gotta do better than this."

Sonic and the Secret Rings

  • Sonic:
    • Gold Medal: "That was tight!"
    • Silver Medal: "Too easy!"
    • Bronze Medal: "Phew, just made it!"
    • No Medal: "Huh, no Problem."
    • Failed: "This just isn't my day."

Sonic Unleashed

  • Xbox 360/PlayStation 3:
    • Sonic:
      • S: "Piece of cake!"/"Beautiful!"/"Sweet!"
      • A: "Yes!"/"Cool!"/"No problem!"
      • B: "How's that?"/"Not bad."/"Ha ha!"
      • C: "Eh, can't win 'em all."/"Yeah, I'm good."
      • D: "Well, that was lame."/"Aw, I've gotta try that again."/"Not my best run."
      • E: "NOOOOO!"/"Aw, no!"
    • Sonic the Werehog:
      • S: "Oh yeah! That's right, baby!"
      • A: (Howls)
      • B: "Wow! I rule!"
      • C: "Hmm, not so bad."
      • D: "Augh! Can I start over?"
      • E: "Darn!"
  • Wii/PlayStation 2:
    • Sonic:
      • S: "No problem!"/"Sweet!"/"Piece of cake!"
      • A: "Yeah, I'm good."/"Ha ha!"/"Yes!"
      • B: "Ha ha!"|"Yeah, I'm good."|"Yes!"
      • C: "NOOOO!"/"Not my best run."
    • Sonic the Werehog:
      • S: "How do you like that, huh?!"
      • A: "Wow! I rule!"
      • B: "Augh! Can I start over?"
      • C: "Hmph, not so hot."

Sonic and the Black Knight

  • Sonic
    • 5 Stars: "(Whistles) That was tight!"
    • 4 Stars: "Too easy!"
    • 3 Stars: "Whew, just made it!"
    • 2 Stars: "Hm, no problem"
    • 1 Star: "Shoot! Not my day"
  • Sir Lancelot
    • 5 Stars: "Ultimate victory!"
    • 4 Stars: "It was a trifling matter!"
    • 3 Stars: "All's well that ends well"
    • 2 Stars: "Not taking this seriously"
    • 1 Star: "I have shamed myself!"
  • Sir Gawain
    • 5 Stars: "Perfect!"
    • 4 Stars: "Hm, not bad!"
    • 3 Stars: "Not bad"
    • 2 Stars: "I didn't use all my strength."
    • 1 Star: "Are you going to end like this?"
  • Sir Percival
    • 5 Stars: "Heh heh! What's wrong?"
    • 4 Stars: "Done with nearly a bit of trouble."
    • 3 Stars: "A performance fitting a knight"
    • 2 Stars: "The time for practice is over"
    • 1 Star: "What the..?"

Sonic Colors (DS)

  • Sonic:
    • S: "Amazing!"
    • A: "Great!"
    • B: "Very good!"
    • C: "Good!"
    • D: "Don't give up!"

Sonic Lost World (3DS)

In the Nintendo 3DS version of Sonic Lost World, Sonic does not add any comments to his Ranks; instead he spins around and gives a "Thumbs Up" depending on the Rank received. However, in the Special Stages, Sonic's Rank animation shows him collecting the Chaos Emerald of the respective Stage and holds it in his left hand. This is identical across all of the Ranks.

Trivia

  • In Sonic Generations, almost the entire total score (and Rank) is calculated by the time taken to complete the level. This means that, by completing an Act at a sufficiently fast time, it is almost always enough to earn an A or S Rank (assuming the player doesn't lose a life).
    • However, an orange bar counting as rings will extend off of the green bar representing time.
  • In Sonic the Hedgehog (2006), since Knuckles is the only character who cannot finish a stage under normal circumstances, his Rank comments cannot be heard unless the player performs gameplay glitches that allows them to finish a stage with Knuckles.
  • Since Sonic Colors, after getting any rank, Sonic will do a pose for the player, but only when the time to interact with the results screen ends. In Sonic Generations, after getting the score results and rank, Sonic will do a pose, perform a move or just dance (depending on what rank the player receives).
  • Rankings were supposed to be given in Sonic Adventure as well, but the concept was scrapped during development time for unknown reasons.[2] However, the system was implemented into the next game, Sonic Adventure 2 and almost every other Sonic game released after.

References

  1. Sonic Heroes (Nintendo GameCube) United States instruction manual, pg. 29.
  2. Unused Rank icons can be found in the game's files
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