For this weeks #ThrowbackThursday, we are going to be talking about the best “mini-games” within games. Little fun games that have nothing to do with the main premise of the game. The first thing that came to my mind was the Chao Garden in the Sonic Adventure series, specifically Sonic Adventure 2 Battle for the Sega Dreamcast. Which was later ported to the Nintendo GameCube and last gen systems (PS3, Xbox 360, And Microsoft Windows).I spent countless hours playing in the Chao Garden after I had beaten the main story missions in Sonic Adventure 2. Being able to breed Chaos and level them up couldn’t have been more addicting.
So in the main story of the game, you will start collecting these different colored power sticks that can be used to increase the stats of your Chao’s back up in the garden. A certain one may increase the swim ability or make your Chao fly for a longer period of time. There are a few other stats that are very important to have at a high level. Because then you can put your Chao’s in competitions like racing, swimming and even karate tournaments.
It’s the cutest thing to see your Chao running next to the other loser Chao’s. You hope that their speed is slower than your Chao in any way possible. There are different obstacles in the basic races that your Chao will have to go through. You will have to run, swim and sometimes fly over large chasms. You can increase a certain stat so that you have the upper advantage once your Chao gets to those points.
The Chao Garden has so much depth to it that it’s not even funny. If you really work hard, you can even manage to get an Angel Chao or a Devil Chao, depending on how you raise it. You can bring your Chao to kindergarten where they will learn useful skills like dancing or how to play an instrument. Take your Chao to the doctor and he will tell you your Chao’s strengths and weaknesses, how it’s feeling etc.
The Chao Garden was such an amazing thing for Sega to add to the already wonderful Sonic Adventure games. I would definitely say that it’s more than just a little meta game.
What’s your favorite game within a game? Let us know in the comments below!
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