American Sonic

Discussion in 'General Sonic Discussion' started by Dr. Mecha, Aug 31, 2011.

  1. Dr. Mecha

    Dr. Mecha

    Member
    1,082
    0
    16
    Dallas, TX
    3d Models
    Since the SA2 topic got constantly get derailled by such a subject, I desided to redirect all post here.

    We all agree that Sonic was made with America in mind, but Sega of America was weary that it would be successful since he's not Extreme enough; Hence why they modified the story, the artwork, and even gave Eggman a full name "Dr. Ivo Robotnik". But the question that we all been wondering is that actually necessary? Sure the Gameplay is solid, but is it enough to bring in some profits? Some of the games where great in reviews, but bombed in sells.
     
  2. TheKazeblade

    TheKazeblade

    "Our Life is More than a Side-Effect" Member
    Your... I don't get it. It seems like you're asking two different questions here, and I don't know how they relate. Please re-phrase.
     
  3. SpeedStarTMQ

    SpeedStarTMQ

    Here for The Hedgehog. Member
    2,356
    19
    18
    UK
    Well, it worked didn't it? I can't think of a Sonic game which bombed in sales at all. Pretty much all of them have been high sellers, even games like 2006. Ones which weren't were just doomed for varying factors, such as being on the less competitive Game Gear, or on less known consoles and add-ons like the 32X. Nothing is relative to story.

    Besides, apart from the added material, the games themselves, and their actual stories were pretty much untouched. They may differ in some names (Eggman/Robotnik) and may have been given more simplified or 'universal' stories (Sonic 2 had massive changes about the Chaos Emeralds and ancient civilizations being mentioned were totally ignored), but it's still Sonic.

    I think had Sonic been released in a more Japanese format, at the time, it may not have been understood. That's why things like AoStH were needed. It built the audience up- familiarized itself with the audience, before continuing and merging both east and western audiences together.

    Besides, hasn't Sonic always fared better in the west? It was built upon an american style- so maybe the japanese are wondering the opposite thing.

    Games which were 'western' only and weren't as accepted by the public were so because they genuinely weren't as good, and carried the Sonic licsence despite being totally different games; Mean Bean Machine and Spinball, for example.
     
  4. Sparks

    Sparks

    Member
    3,031
    11
    18
    Kyle and Lucy: Wonderworld
    It worked at the time, but once Westernization calmed down left a really bad stench on the franchise.
     
  5. Azookara

    Azookara

    take it from me, little buddy Member
    3,001
    36
    28
    Meowth's party
    hoboagogo?
    Really, whenever it came to the western localization meddling with the story, all they did was super-simplify everything to "cool dude with an attitude beats up fat robot-making bad guy because of animal shenanigans". Because of that, we didn't just get the whole mentality that Sonic never really has ever had solid stories or a large background mythos, but it also led to five hundred different canons that were pulled out of thin air to fill in the missing spaces. All that, and the entrance of Sonic Adventure (which just so happened to follow the original canon continuity), pretty much led to a whole cluster of insanity with no sense of direction.

    As for the artwork, I doubt the changes they made would've made much of a difference. Didn't Sonic 1 do great in Europe, even though the characters on the boxart and beyond retained their less "extreme" Japanese designs? Granted, the series didn't need to be all too Japanese-y, but I doubt it would've if they were aiming to be western.
     
  6. Dr. Mecha

    Dr. Mecha

    Member
    1,082
    0
    16
    Dallas, TX
    3d Models
    Don't forget that they added an origin story for BOTH Eggman and Sonic. Also Sonic 2, 3 and Knuckles all tie in together with the help of the Death Egg. Sonic Adventure tied in with Sonic 3 & Knuckle since it further expands on the Angel Island Mythos (on how it was risen in the first place, and the true reason why they need gaurdians in the first place). Besides Sonic 2, Sega of America barely done anything to the story of the Death Egg trilogy. Also, you have to recall that there's a Manga in which Sonic is a Super Hero with a secret identity, which adds more to the infinate canon that the Sonic World created.
     
  7. Azookara

    Azookara

    take it from me, little buddy Member
    3,001
    36
    28
    Meowth's party
    hoboagogo?
    Yes, although that in itself is part of the many aforementioned canons pulled out of thin air. :v:

    Exactly. Sega of America barely did anything at all to recognize the mythos SoJ built. No mentioning of the island behaviors, the purpose behind the Chaos Emeralds / Master Emerald, Eggman's true intentions/doings, explanations on exactly what things happened and how they folded out, I could go on and on. Because of that, no one in the west had anything to go by so they made up stuff as they went, causing utmost confusion to western Sonic fans upon the release of SA1.

    That's the only one I don't understand. Why would they ever make that one whenever in Japan, it wasn't nearly as muddled up as it was everywhere else? Just some weird random mangaka people. =P
     
  8. MastaSys

    MastaSys

    Member
    556
    3
    18
    In my perspective it was the aggressive marketing that helped in the success not the changes made.
    Most of the changes we know today were known to the public when Sonic 1 was already set in stone anyway and didn't have that much impact at the moment
    Even the westernized design of Dr. Robotnik wasn't much different from the Japanese Dr. Eggman at the time.

    To my knowledge the game plot in the manuals, besides the Dr. name change, was just simplified it was almost the same thing.

    I can only think only one change that actually had impact was the Western Sonic Design, if the history info is to be trusted, the actual Japanese classic design is based on the American one changed from the original idea from Oshima.

    Talk about recursive design :v:

    Cartoons and alike, I don't believe it helped launch the popularity, however for the general public it might helped cementing it for some good years, and also reaching people that the original premise didn't catch in the first place.

    Personally as a child I watched like only 2 or 3 episodes of SATAM and AOSTH, at the time was more of a commercial to me, it was the games themselves that hooked for me.
    Probably why the japanification in general of the story in Adventure didn't affect me negatively, when for me Sonic was just an hero that saved animals from the bad dude.

    Years after I watched the cartoons, and I actually like SATAM, but not because it's Sonic, I don't feel it like it's Sonic, but because it's a very good cartoon on it's own.
    So I'm really a weird case comparing to other dudes and dudettes here, maybe might explain my perspective on the matter.
     
  9. 0r4ng3

    0r4ng3

    Member
    1,318
    0
    0
    The story is irrelevant, as it's only explained in manuals and therefore, only accessible if you bought the game. That and gameplay are both in the same situation. I also doubt that anyone bought the sequels or stayed as a fan for whatever they read in those manuals. It's the setting and the gameplay people fell for. Eggman, Robotnik, does it really matter? It's just a name in the manual. It doesn't sell anything at all and it's like the rest of this, irrelevant if you haven't bought the game. Unless you're reading the back cover or something but what kind of child does that? I don't remember reading the manuals.

    The artwork being changed. Eh, it doesn't matter either. In Europe, Sonic 1 had Sonic's japanese artwork and it sold heaps while Sonic 3 had horrid artwork and it also sold heaps.
     
  10. Dr. Mecha

    Dr. Mecha

    Member
    1,082
    0
    16
    Dallas, TX
    3d Models
    SoJ only gave that guy the licence to make the manga, like SoA gave Archie the licence to make the comic. The only difference is that two of that manga's character became cannon immigrants (which explains why the got Sally and Amy mixed in the manual of Sonic CD in the United States).

    Here's the Manga in question.
     
  11. Nuglet McJunior

    Nuglet McJunior

    Member
    10
    0
    0
    I actually liked what they started doing storywise in Sonic Adventure 2. It was honestly pretty interesting, and I think the franchise evolved in an interesting way with that game. I think they jumped the shark with Shadow the Hedgehog though story wise. That's where things went downhill IMO.
     
  12. Keith Stack

    Keith Stack

    Oldbie
    117
    0
    16
    Yonkers, NY
    Sonic the Hedgehog Megamix: Megamix
    The cartoons and comics? Yeah, I'd say they helped boost Sonic's iconic status significantly, and are (in many cases at least) good in their own right.

    Making Sonic look uglier on the box art for the games? I can't imagine that was too advantageous. In my opinion, however, the US box arts do have better overall composition than the Japanese box arts.
     
  13. Ridiculum

    Ridiculum

    Member
    66
    0
    0
    In a way, it was nice that they kind of made one solid "canon" Sonic story (pre-SA1, Japan and 'Murrca had vastly different stories). But the way they went about it... I don't know, it's really hard to pinpoint how exactly it was bad. Sonic Adventure 1, even though it started the awful trend of the JRPG final boss trope in the Sonic series, was pretty cool nonetheless. A little rough, but still cool- it felt like it was Sonic. The stages, the music, the general gameplay (excluding Big, although I somewhat enjoyed his levels), and so on.

    A lot of people say it's because they never saw a problem with the idea of a "deep" story, so we got Shadow the Hedgehog and Sonic 06. But, honestly? The first Sonic game I never played all the way through and legitimately got bored with, was Sonic Heroes. It just... I don't know. There was something wrong with it. And it didn't even have the bawtacular story. Hell, the majority of the levels were very much Sonic-style.

    I guess it had to do with the gameplay. Sure, SA2 (as pointed out in the other thread) had many gameplay faults. But Sonic Heroes just seemed to simultaneously bore, anger, and disappoint me. Yet it seemed to be closer to the regular Sonic games when it came to story and etc. It felt much more on-rails (even though I know SA2 was as well)- the inclusion of the switching system felt like a moot point when it always told you how to get past each obstacle. It just felt arbitrary and... needless. I tried to look past it, but the actual gameplay was horribly shallow, I felt. It's like they came up with the concept of a 3 person team, and just made a bunch of levels for a really long concept demo.

    So I have a theory as to why those host of Sonic games really aren't as good, and why localization really had nothing to do with it- they didn't know who to appeal to. Gameplay wise, and... well, basically everything else. SA1, SA2, Heroes, Shadow, and Sonic 06 all have a large difference in... basically everything (cliche stories aside). Because the developers never knew what really worked, they tried way too many different things. When honestly, they should have just refined Sonic Adventure a lot.

    TL;DR: Sonic Adventure 1 was localized fine. It was the lack of refining of any one game's overall design that wasn't fine.
     
  14. sonictopfan

    sonictopfan

    Misfit
    35
    3
    8