Sonic Frontiers

Top 5 Skills in Sonic Frontiers, Ranked

The combat system in Sonic Frontiers involves the player progressing through a skill tree. Here are the five best skills Sonic can earn.

Alongside the addition of more open-world-adjacent gameplay, Sonic Frontiers also sports the most expansive combat system the series has seen to this point—complete with skill tree. It isn’t a particularly extensive tree, but the smaller pool of skills causes these five to stand out from the crowd even more. Here’s a ranking of the top five skills in Sonic Frontiers.

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5. Recovery Smash

Sonic performs a Recovery Smash against a Guardian in Sonic Frontiers.
Image Source: Sega via Twinfinite

It may seem strange to start a list like this with a skill that’s only available when making a mistake, but Recovery Smash is such a powerful attack that it simply can’t go ignored.

Once unlocked, a button prompt can appear every time Sonic is knocked down. If the prompt is executed before he hits the ground, Sonic will fly back at the enemy and unleash a devastating series of attacks with a healthy dose of vengeance.

Aside from dealing a respectable amount of damage, it also does a great job of immediately throwing the player back into the middle of the action to start rebuilding the combo meter they just lost after being hit.

Unfortunately, the strength of the ability does come with a cost; it’s the most expensive skill in the game, requiring 50 skill points, and rests squarely at the very end of the skill tree. While it may take some time to unlock it in a playthrough, the punch it packs is absolutely worth the wait.

4. Phantom Rush

Sonic attacking an enemy while Phantom Rush is activated in Sonic Frontiers.
Image Source: Sega via Twinfinite

In stark contrast with Recovery Smash, Phantom Rush is a skill that rewards you for playing well. As Sonic regularly dishes out attacks, a meter will build on the righthand side of the screen. When it maxes out, Phantom Rush will activate, boosting every attack Sonic carries out after that point by 1.2 times.

It’s certainly hard to say no to free extra damage, but the greatest aspect of Phantom Rush is the fact that it lasts for such a lengthy amount of time. As long as you’re able to keep pummeling the enemy, you’ll keep dealing additional damage until the combo meter runs out. It also has the very important characteristic of looking flashy and fun as multiple Sonics go to town on an enemy.

In another disparity with the previous entry on this list, you get Phantom Rush very early in your playthrough. It costs a meager three skill points and is the second skill you have to unlock overall, encouraging the player to be mindful of their performance and rewarding smart play.

3. Quick Cyloop

Sonic attacks an enemy with the Quick Cyloop ability.
Image Source: Sega via Twinfinite

At many points throughout Frontiers, the game will require the player to perform a cyloop. This is done by holding down a button to leave a trail of light behind Sonic as he runs, and once the trail forms a complete circle, rings and collectibles will appear, or certain environmental objects will react in a specific way.

In combat, the cyloop is required to lower the defenses of certain shielded enemy types. If the enemy doesn’t fall under that category, they’re instead launched into the air and completely vulnerable for Sonic to start attacking, making it an offensive option with almost universal utility.

Quick Cyloop allows you to execute a cyloop with a single button press, instantly opening the enemy up without the need to take a timeout and draw a circle around them. The only drawback is that Quick Cyloop is strictly limited to a single target, which means it doesn’t completely replace the regular cyloop, but it’s a very strong tool for opening up enemies after it’s purchased for 20 skill points.

2. Spin Slash

Sonic attacks with a Spin Dash in Sonic Frontiers.
Image Source: Sega via Twinfinite

If Quick Cyloop represents a skill that’s useful for its utility, Spin Slash is the quintessential example of a skill that’s useful for sheer damage output.

If the player presses a specific button in the middle of a combo, Sonic will curl into a ball and fly around the enemy like a blue sawblade while he deals a total of 20 hits.

In addition to its power, Spin Slash also deals a large amount of hits. If executing it towards the end of Sonic’s standard combo doesn’t initiate a Phantom Rush, it’ll definitely have gotten you a majority of the way there. These two features make Spin Slash an indispensable tool in Sonic’s arsenal.

It’s available near end of the skill tree (just before Recovery Smash, in fact) and costs 40 skill points, but the investment is more than worth it for its damage and reliability with triggering Phantom Rush.

1. Cross Slash

Sonic attacks an enemy with the Cross Slash skill.
Image Source: Sega via Twinfinite

Cross Slash is something of an exception here, as its the only skill on this list that’s given to the player for free as a part of main story progression. By boosting in mid-air and pressing a button, Sonic will fly in a circle around the enemy while firing a volley of energy blasts.

It may not deal as much damage as Spin Slash does, but in the tradeoff Cross Slash becomes the undisputed champion of building the combo meter. If every projectile lands, the player will find themselves with 76 hits under their belt, practically guaranteeing a Phantom Rush state.

Cross Slash claims the number one spot on this list for the ease with which it allows the player to buff all of their damage following the start of the Phantom Rush. And that’s to say nothing of the way it moves Sonic around his target, making it a great solution for dealing with enemies that have homing attacks.

Those are the five best skills in Sonic Frontiers. Whether through specific utility or damage, these are the abilities that feel the most impactful in gameplay. If you’re on the hunt for more Sonic Frontiers info, be sure to brush up on how to earn skill points via our guide. Afterward, you may want to read Twinfinite’s rundown of how to fast travel in Sonic Frontiers.


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Justin Mercer
A fan of any game that has something to say, a certified MMORPG lover following the genre for nigh on 20 years, and a staunch defender of (almost) every single game on the original PlayStation.