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Do Sonic Team even know what makes Sonic good?

Discussion in 'General Sonic Discussion' started by Laura, Dec 5, 2013.

  1. The KKM

    The KKM

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    Saying they've been afraid of getting labeled as stuck on a formula since the 3d era misses the part where as soon as Sonic 3 they wanted to change things up, and then spent the whole Saturn era going "Well we don't want to keep doing the same thing".

    They've always used the idea of "We peaked on this gameplay, let's change".
     
  2. winterhell

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    Isn't anybody seeing that almost every(if not every) bad Sonic game has one thing in common. The friggin homing attack. Even all the 2D/2.5D games people complain about. Designing the level and gameplay around not having it would already be a big step.
     
  3. Aerosol

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    Then the homing attack isn't the problem. The level design is. Level design has been the weak link for a long time now though, so that's not new. It's just super-apparent with Sonic Lost World. Take Sonic 1 with spindash enabled, for instance. You wouldn't suddenly turn around and say that the spindash is the problem, because Sonic 1's level design doesn't make use of it. It's just another tool for you to get around and do stuff with.
     
  4. TheKazeblade

    TheKazeblade

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    I wouldn't go as far as saying current Sonic Team is bad. I think what it boils down to is that they don't seem to be able to hit a level of consistency. For instance, I hold that Generation's Seaside Hill Act 2 is without a doubt the best-designed 3d Sonic level ever made. Alternate paths galore, beautiful art, and level nuance that depends on the skill of the player. However, in the exact same game, we have to deal with the abysmally designed Time Eater boss. Sonic Team truly has moments of brilliance, but by constantly changing their gameplay styles, they have not built the necessary knowledge needed to discern what about the good levels are good at their core, and what is superfluous. What's more, I don't feel that they feel confident enough in their strengths to build that consistency they need to achieve a solid product every time. Something needs to happen at Sega that allows the opportunity for this to happen.
     
  5. Dark Sonic

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    That's like saying every 3d Mario game where he wears long sleeves is a good game.
     
  6. winterhell

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    Ok let me explain my problem with the homing attack. Being used to the classic games, I try to land on an enemy instead of homing to him. That thends to be hard due to the bad air control(because why need it when you have homing) and/or not rebouncing as good as with the homing attack. For example Episode 1 is a very bad offender here.
     
  7. Aerosol

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    So the answer to you question is that the reason it seems like nobody else shares your opinion is because nobody else plays the games like you do.
     
  8. Dark Sonic

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    I'll admit, the lack of rebound is kind of a pain in the ass, but I feel like with the speeds Sonic goes at it's necessary at least in 3D. In 2D though, it might be nice as a shield or something.

    Episode 1 is bad for many more reasons than just the jumping though.

    Also there is no reason why we can't have classic rebound and homing attack in the same game. In fact that could be used for some interesting level design. Homing attacking is the easy way across but cancels the vertical rebound you would otherwise get from jumping on an enemy at a high distance, meaning if you could jump across a chain you could get to a higher path
     
  9. Captain L

    Captain L

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    This is a problem that plagues every single Sonic game. I have never played a Sonic game that doesn't have something bad in it. Sonic 1 has the sudden gameplay shift in Marble Zone and Labyrinth Zone, Sonic 2 and CD both have bad object placement and terrible special stages, Sonic 3 & Knuckles was the closest, with the game not taking the Insta-Shield into account (that's the best I can come up with?), and we all know the problems all the 3D games had. Even Generations had Classic Crisis City and both acts of Planet Wisp. Sonic Team has almost never been able to make a consistently good experience.
     
  10. Jayextee

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    How can Sonic Team know what makes their games good when a dedicated community of researchers and modders can't even agree? It's an impossible goal, surely. + - Tongue so firmly in cheek I'm licking my own inner ear.  
     
  11. SpaceyBat

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    This is pretty much exactly where I stand on the subject. There isn't a single Sonic fandom, but rather a bunch of divided factions who all want to see Sonic embrace a particular gameplay style. That being the case, I feel like Sonic Team from a business standpoint would be justified in developing games that are either tailored to the largest audience or focused on attracting newcomers to the series, especially children.

    Take a look at the Mario fandom, which as a whole is much more unified. Mario sees much of its success with kids and his games are always brightly colored and kid-friendly to accommodate this target demographic. And because he's always been kid-friendly, the older fans don't often feel betrayed by the sudden shifts in tone and style that have been characteristic of Sonic over the years. Due to this consistency, there is little need for a clear distinction between "Modern Mario" or "Classic Mario" to the same extent of Modern and Classic Sonic. Mario is Mario.

    Despite this, though, I feel like Sonic's ever-changing style fits his nature. As the lyrics of some of his theme songs so aptly point out, it doesn't matter to him, and he'll always keep on running no matter what. So it's not something that I think needs to be changed necessarily - just toned down a bit to establish a consistent set of gameplay elements that will help ensure that no matter what the heck he does, it'll be good in some way.
     
  12. Aerosol

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    Sonic was consistently fast until SLW. There's that.
     
  13. Laura

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    I don't really think it's fair to bring the fanbase into part of the reason Sonic failed. To put it very bluntly, Sonic Team pay very little, if any, attention to the hardcore fanbase. There are certain things that virtually all the hardcore fans want: Sonic's friends to be playable or more meaningful, a 'meaty' storyline (no matter the presentation) and less automation in the form of boosters and springs. Hilariously, these are all things Sonic Team have actually done the opposite of what the fans have asked for, sometimes in an aggressive manner. In the case of Sonic's friends, they are so paranoid of critics and casual gamers hating them that they don't even incorporate them into multiplayer.

    I really don't think the fragmented state of the fanbase has any bearing on the future of Sonic or Sonic Team.
     
  14. Jayextee

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    Stop right there.

    Sonic community shoutouts/memes in Sonic Unleashed, and some of Sonic Generations would point toward the opposite being true. But we're a small niche and not their core audience to be honest; children whose parents can remember Sonic (and Sonic being 'good') are, and those are the ones buying - but not playing - the games.
     
  15. Jason

    Jason

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    Marble and Labyrinth.
     
  16. JaredAFX

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    Pffffft. I sincerely don't mean to offend you, but that's totally not true. Iizuka has said Shadow was created with the intent of hooking American gamers with guns and cursing (which was brilliantly assumed after an online poll showed that we wanted Shadow to star in his own game).

    I agree that the fanbase is not why Sonic Team has failed before, per sé, but they definitely had some influence on recent games.
     
  17. Laura

    Laura

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    Sonic community shoutouts in Unleashed? What do these amount to? I honestly have no idea what this is about because I gave up on Unleashed a few hours in.

    As for Generations, it was fanservice in the form of level selection and, perhaps, Classic Sonic. But let's be honest, everything else about Generations wasn't geared towards the hardcore fans. Sonic as only playable character, continuation of boost, automation e.t.c.

    It's a natural position for a developer. Once you do too much fanservice you are essentially doing marketing (and it makes more sense to focus on market trends and critic's complaints), and since game creation is usually a creative process anyway developers try to shy away from this and go on their own instincts.

    I really don't think the hardcore fans of Sonic wanted Shadow toting guns.

    I don't even think Shadow fans tend to want that. Shadow fans want Shadow as he was portrayed in SA2, which is more anime influenced. Having Shadow all American influenced with guns and the contemporary urban trend seems to go against this doesn't it.
     
  18. Captain L

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    I'd definitely say Sonic Generations gameplay was still there to appeal to the fans. Classic Sonic was included because we wouldn't stop bitching about Sonic 4 and the physics, and Modern Sonic's continuation of boost gameplay was because we were receptive to it in Unleashed and Colors. Remember, Unleashed got some abysmal reviews from professional outlets, but the fandom liked Sonic in it. Our approval of it was enough to keep it in Colors, and when everyone liked that, it only seemed right to keep it again.

    Sonic Team has a bad habit of dropping a gameplay style right when they got it perfect, or fucked it up beyond repair. Classic Sonic games stopped after Sonic 3 & Knuckles, the "Gamecube Sonic" (that's as good of a title I'm getting) ended with Shadow, Adventure games were never seen after 06, and Boost left with Generations. We'll have to wait and see which way the Xtreme Galaxy formula goes.
     
  19. Overlord

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    There's a community injoke that goes years back about Tails being a girl - one of the questions in the quizes in Unleashed talked about "Tails having a secret - but what was it". One of the possible answers was that he was a girl =P
     
  20. Aerosol

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    And there are levels in Mario games that challenge the player by putting Mario in an awkward situation. What is your point?