Bashing Sonic Mania

Discussion in 'General Sonic Discussion' started by Chaos Rush, Jul 26, 2020.

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  1. Aesculapius Piranha

    Aesculapius Piranha

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    Mania was near-perfect. However:
    • Headcannon are assholes(lovingly) for mixing Marble Garden with Stardust Speedway. At its heart it was my least favorite stage in all of Sonic, with a coat of paint from my favorite. I felt trolled the whole time. Props I guess. You got me, guys.
    • On that note yet another game that could have had playable Metal. Canceled out a bit by the fact his fight was pretty great.
    • Titanic Monarch's music grated on me.
    • This should have never been a Forces tie-in. Cheapened both games.
    • Some of the much needed cameos shared the same problem with Forces of just being illusions.
    Of those the first is the only one that bothers me. Fuck Marble Garden.
     
  2. Frostav

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    That's not how it feels unless you just haven't practiced the level enough. It is laid out in a far more intuitive way than CD's version and while it does fling you around a lot, whoop de doo, Sonic's a living pinball, he should get chaotically thrown around a bit. It's certainly better than Flying Battery and Lava Reef, two boring as hell drudging levels that were about as boring in their original game too :V

    The two acts have absolutely incredible music certainly elevates them highly too!
     
  3. Mana

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    You have a very unique outlook on Sonic game design that I don't feel the majority of the fanbase shares, which is fine, I'm just glad it's not the norm.
     
  4. Linkabel

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    They got Takenobu Mitsuyoshi to be the competition announcer but didn't have him do an intro vocal song. :colbert:

    The only missed opportunity of the game for me.
     
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  5. SyntaxTsu

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    Oh, how could I forget! FBZ2's layout is a mess. Doesn't make sense as an airship and also exceedingly long.

    That and the fact that an interior region is shown using tiles otherwise dedicated to outside areas only just bugs me.
     
  6. Dark Sonic

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    Ya FBZ 2 was a bit too long and maze like. On my 1st play I got a time over at the boss. I don't think I've time overed unintentionally in over 15 years at that point and I'm pretty good with classic Sonic gameplay so that took me aback a bit. But let's be real, does any Sonic airship layout make sense? None of these things should fly lol

    Oh and I love Marble Garden Speedway :specialed:. Marble Garden was one of my favorite Sonic 3 levels. I love how Marble Garden only lives on in references though. Generations took its' spinning top gimmick for sky sanctuary and Mania took everything else besides that.
     
  7. Blue Blood

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    They somewhat mitigate the problem with FBZ2 and other long levels like it by making the timer optional as of V1.4 (Encore mode update), but of course that only treats the symptom and not the problem. As has been said elsewhere in this thread, the level can be absurdly long for new players. It's really strange that the upper path is the long one and difficult one instead of the lower path, which is both shorter and faster. It's too much of a gauntlet that just keeps going. I don't dislike the level, but I think it's pretty telling that it's I regularly go "yep, time to stop playing" whenever I reach it in a playthrough.

    And totally agree with you on the subject of Marble Garden Speedway. I never understood the dislike for the S3K stage personally; those steep slopes are great for speed bursts, the music is chill and the spinning tops aren't difficult at all. Like, really guys, they're easy. You run and they go up, you stop and they go down, you land on the ground and they spin like spinning tops. The Generations' versions took out the last part and gave them a time limit, which actually made them less fun to use. But as for Mania, I loved the aesthetic use of all of MGZs gimmicks within SS. The neon futuristic ruins aesthetic was a stroke of genius that never really got a chance to shine in CD, but in Mania it's fully realised and is simply gorgeous. It plays well too. SS2 is alright, but SS1 is where it's really at. One of my favourite Mania stages by far.

    Oh here a really subjective, non-important thing that I want to bash Mania for: aesthetically speaking, a bunch of its levels are really dark. As in, they have nighttime-esque pallets and lots of shades of deep blues and purples even if they're not explicitly set at night. You've got Chemical Plant, Studiopolis, Flying Battery (it's all dark on the inside and act 2's outdoors sections are stormy), Stardust Speedway, Hydrocity, Oil Ocean (act 1 kinda and act 2 definitely), Lava Reef, Metallic Madness and Titanic Monarch. Only Green Hill, Mirage Saloon and Press Garden have bright backgrounds, and even then Green Hill 2 is often hidden by caves/mountains. It's a strange aesthetic for also so much of the game to be in gloomy environments.
     
  8. SuperSonicRider

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    This is something that only "theoretically" bugs me in that I haven't had bad experiences with it, but the design of the SPZ2 and (phase 2 of the) TMZ1 bosses with Knuckles leaves your ability to hit them entirely up to RNG. While I don't mind RNG in games inherently, in those bosses it essentially decides whether you can progress or not. Like I said, I haven't ever had any bad playthroughs on either of them, but I know a speedrunner who was unable to hit the TMZ1 boss for 11 of the gravity switch moves! With Sonic/Tails/Ray/Mighty you can jump high enough to reach the boss at a specific time (& of course Tails & Ray also have their flying abilities), but, unless there's something I misunderstand here, Knuckles is basically screwed until the boss comes to the ground.

    One other, less significant thing, that also happens to be about bosses - I could've probably done without the HCZ2 boss's second phase. I remember coming to it on my first playthrough and thought "...OK?" It was the one thing that stuck out to me as being very strange (besides missing cutscene transitions), because it's literally just the original boss after a fight that I thought was pretty fun and creative.
     
  9. SystemsReady

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    Oh right, yeah, like, earlier this year I almost time overed in FBZ Act 2, because the level is really long and paired with a really stally boss, even for someone who has played the games for almost three decades now at this point and has cleared Mania close to eight times. It really is too long. I think I mentioned before also that the "long levels" problem was an issue I had with their Sonic 1 ROMHack, but it's pared down in Mania as opposed to being every zone like in that hack.

    ...I didn't even realize this, which I guess kinda shows my bias for cool pallettes and nighttime levels in games :V
     
  10. Dek Rollins

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    They're still a bit of a pain in the ass though. Some areas require you to fly the top up a rather narrow vertical path (while staying mindful of ceiling spikes). This means you have to run back and forth to keep rising straight up, but the top almost immediately begins losing altitude when you stop moving forward. Are they horribly difficult to use? No. But they are a pain in the ass. (this isn't the 3&K thread so I tried to be brief :p)
     
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  11. Palas

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    Stop dissing other someone else's outlook on the franchise they like. You're not bashing the game they like, you're bashing them. It's incredibly grating and uncalled for.

    That aside, I agree that it's great for Sonic to bounce around if that's what the stage clearly does to you. My issue with many stages in Sonic Mania is that I'm not sure what they're supposed to do to me. I like stages like CD's Stardust Speedway because there's a specific skill you have to hone there: precision, as well as scouting ahead. A lot of stages in Mania (and also Marble Garden in S3&K) are just... all-around. Which I understand a lot of prople like, but I feel it makes them unremarkable and too reliant on aesthetics and specific gimmicks to leave an impression. Labyrinth is superior to Hidrocity to me because, in the former, the water brings a specific danger and, with that, a specific way to play that is not seen anywhere else in the game. The latter just doesn't. It's a speedy stage like every other stage in Sonic 3 (and in Sonic Mania).
     
  12. Mana

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    Don't think anyone took it that way but you, man. I wasn't bashing them. I truly am glad that most people don't think Sonic should be a pinball and tossed around each stage chaotically with no sense of how to progress such as in SSZ act 2. I wasn't insulting him by saying that.
     
  13. CHAnga

    CHAnga

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    You can't spam the bubble shield and go "babubabubabubabubabaBWOOM" like in Sonic 3 what the actual heck that was so fun why'd the change it >:[=

    I know other people have brought this up, but the fact that most of the zones and even some of the level design are lifted from previous games is a far bigger hangup for me personally than it seems to be for most folks, and severely limited this game's wow factor for me. Like, it's pretty darn quality and fun, but it really doesn't absolutely blow me away, and aside from the new zones, gimmicks, reworks and drop dash (I actually bought the AGES release of Sonic 1 just so that I could play it with that move), overall I didn't really get that much more out of it than what I already saw on the Genesis.

    Don't get me wrong, I have full confidence in the Mania team's ability to create a full and proper followup to S3&K, given the proper dev time and resources, but for my money, Mania simply isn't that. If they release another Mania with old and new zones, maybe I could collectively refer to the new parts of both games as such...?



    ...Call me a hypocrite, but I'll gladly accept the same ratio of old to new stages in a Mania 2 if the old stages include the multiplayer levels from Sonic 3 made into full zones.
     
  14. Mr. Fox

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    My only (and major) issue with Sonic Mania is that "more of a good thing" is not always the best way. Levels just go on forever edging very close to the time limit at times. Boss fights are exhausting having multiple phases and cutscenes in-between. Yeah, it's impressive on your first playthrough, but that 4 phase Metal Sonic fight is such a showstopper. He's not even a major villain in this game, why make it so long.
     
  15. BadBehavior

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    Man, hearing all the people say that the levels are too long just reminded me of my experience playing the Mega Man 11 demo: levels were too long with very sparse checkpoints. I complained on Twitter and some fanboy told me to "GiT gUd".

    Cos that's how you introduce new players to your long-running series. /s
     
  16. Josh

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    This inspired me to go back and check the release night livestream of my first time playing through Sonic Mania. These were my initial clear times, keeping in mind that I was by no means rushing, and was occasionally even standing still to talk to the chat:

    GHZ
    1: 4:13
    2: 5:04

    CPZ:
    1: 2:56
    2: 3:25

    SPZ:
    1: 3:44
    2: 4:43

    FBZ:
    1: 4:47
    2: 7:00

    PGZ:
    1: 5:42
    2: 4:13

    SSZ:
    1: 4:03
    2: 1:40
    B: 6:32

    HCZ:
    1: 4:40
    2: 5:09

    MSZ:
    1: 4:23
    2: 4:34

    OOZ:
    1: 2:56
    2: 4:21

    LRZ:
    1: 5:20
    2: 6:53

    MMZ:
    1: 4:14
    2: 4:35

    TMZ:
    1: 6:09
    2: 9:00
    B: 2:31

    With the exception of TMZ act 2, I never even came close to being in danger of a Time Over.

    HOWEVER, I also finished the game with 15 lives, and never came close to getting a GAME Over, either. I came into Sonic Mania having spent my whole life playing and replaying the games that inspired it. I would guess that not more than a month has gone by in the past 25 years where I _haven't_ finished at least one of the classics. And even with that all that experience, some of these stages were still taking me seven minutes to get through my first time.

    I don't think the issue is that they're too LONG, because you start cutting them down and you'll impact replayability. But I definitely think Sonic Mania could have offered some options for a more "casual" experience. Toggle off Time Overs, get rid of the lives system, maybe even make it so you can't die, similar to Sonic 1's debug mode. When I was a kid, I cheated the HECK out of these games, using the Game Genie to give myself all emeralds and Super Sonic. But that didn't keep me from getting good, and there wouldn't be a thing wrong with a sequel to Mania offering some similar options to players who want it.
     
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  17. Palas

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    Unrelated, but inspired by the last post: I always thought it'd have been cool to make the Phantom Ruby an obtainable item, kinda like Super Emeralds or something? That'd unlock the debug mode. Because it's sort of what it does, story-wise. Kind of.
     
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  18. Mr. Fox

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    This reminded me:

    - The lives system largely exists only to punish casual players. Old timers will ignore it completely as they will likely never run out of lives while newcomers will hate it because it will keep booting them all the way back to the beginning of act 1 if they struggle on a boss (e.g. the OOZ2 boss caused some rage online).
    - The lives system is also the reason we can only save the game at the beginning of act 1, each zone must be beaten in one sitting which can be inconvenient.
    - Same goes for the time limit. I remember quite a few reviewers questioning its existence.

    Still, these are extremely iconic mechanics and given that Mania is such an authentic nostalgia throwback it could be considered heresy to suggest removing them. They didn't bother me much personally except for the save thing, guess I got too used to save states in emulators.
     
  19. I guess my only real criticism of Mania was the re-use of old levels, although I understand that wasn't the Mania teams fault.

    It pains me to say this, but I put it down after one full playthrough.

    Not saying that the game's is not an amazing achievement, because it is. But the level reuse just taints it for me and is classic post SA1 Sonic Team behaviour.

    I'm going to have to play through it again soon, although I lost my old Steam account so have to buy it again dammit.
     
  20. SanicDerpy

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    Not only I didn't like Mania re-using old levels. My only complant aside from re-used levels is the DLC.

    Although I do like the inclusion of Mighty and Ray (especially how they're been on hiatus for 2 decades and have a unique moveset) and the new boss for Stardust Speedway.

    I didn't really like how "Plus" just added new special stages, a single act of Angel Island playable (which is partily incomplete) and recolored each of the zones only with layout differences rather than adding in new zones. (I have only played up to Oil Ocean in encore and didn't want to keep going to due to being boring)

    I felt like encore mode was pretty lackluster overall. Which is why I didn't want to complete it in the first place.

    Not to mention, the special stages in encore were pretty diffcult, especially the thrid and fifth ones.

    I found it strange how Mighty and Ray are not even exclusive to encore mode, which defeats the purpose of having this mode to play as them and the cutscene where you save them in Angel Island to begin with.

    I felt like the new Stardust boss and Mighty and Ray should've been added from the start rather than DLC (at least it wasn't so expensive).

    It was a great game, but I felt like it should've been an original Sonic game to begin with. I understand it wasn't the teams fault for this.

    EDIT: Rather than being exclusive, They should've been unlockable if they want to be playable in the normal "Maina Mode" which would encourage players to complete Encore to play as them.
     
    Last edited: Aug 14, 2020
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