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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. OKei

    OKei

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    He still had his own blimp along with Pikachu in the Macy Thanksgiving parade this year. At what point can you say the mainstream has an interest in Sonic?
     
  2. Metal Man88

    Metal Man88

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    When it starts selling more like Mario or other big names and less like Sonic, obviously.
     
  3. Aerosol

    Aerosol

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    Sonic (?): Coming summer of 2055...?
    Sonic is a cultural icon, sure. Most everybody can recognize Sonic. But that's also half the problem, because most gamers that recognize Sonic also know that the quality of the games he's in is not consistent. He's a B-list star with A-list producers.
     
  4. Dark Sonic

    Dark Sonic

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    I'd say he's a B-list star with C-list producers but I get what you mean
     
  5. DustArma

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    I don't know if Sonic Team knows, but I can say most fans certainly don't, and even those who have an idea can't ever agree on anything.

    And contrary to the popular belief here, the classic way is not the only way to make a fun Sonic game, as demonstrated by those who enjoy the Adventure and Boost gameplay.
     
  6. Andrew75

    Andrew75

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    I Agree with the Topic starters first post. Sonic's level design is lacking these days...Good bye Sonic! It was nice knowing you. Sega is killing you off slowly.
     
  7. Beltway

    Beltway

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    Responding to the OP, no.

    Though I do argue that in terms of competence the Unleashed team (in which we are quite overdue for a new game made exclusively by them) are a few pegs up than the Colors team (who in a span of 6 years pumped out both Storybook games -Secert Rings and Black Knight-, Colors, and Lost World while assisting the former team with Generations).

    This, though I'd argue that Sonic Adventure (which most of that team made), while flawed with it's gameplay roulette change and general inability to age gracefully in terms of graphics, cutscenes, and dialogue, did get a grasp on how the Genesis Sonic games would probably play in 3D without having to constantly resort to flashy automated sequences.
     
  8. Machenstein

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    Sonic is still a pretty big name, at least for a platformer in the modern age. Let's face it, mascot platformers have been a dying breed since the 6th generation. Mario is the exception, and only because his primary role is to sell Nintendo consoles.
     
  9. Aerosol

    Aerosol

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    Sonic (?): Coming summer of 2055...?
    And he is only able to sell Nintendo consoles because Mario games are consistently good. It's not exactly the same situation, but SA1 and SA2 couldn't save the Dreamcast.
     
  10. Machenstein

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    That's sort of my point. Super Mario 3D World has to be good because the Wii U isn't doing so hot right now. While Sonic Adventure wasn't the most polished 3D platformer, it did receive enough critical acclaim to help the Dreamcast experience a brief period of hype.
     
  11. Mentski

    Mentski

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    This is EXACTLY what Sonic games have been missing since S&K in my honest opinion.

    I've always used this analogy: Classic Sonic was like a skatepark - Levels were playgrounds where you could show off using the tools given to you (precisely why the physics were oh-so important).

    New Sonic is a rollercoaster - It might be fast, it might look impressive sometimes, but jump out of the train and it all goes tits up.
     
  12. Jayextee

    Jayextee

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    I feel like a nail has been hit here, right on the head.

    Green Hill Zone (much vaunted as one of the best zones) is practically the Sonic Skatepark concept, the only stipulation being occasional redefining of level boundaries (the bottom of the screen) and the overall left-to-right progression. Other than this, it's a semi-Newtonian physics playground.
     
  13. Knucklez

    Knucklez

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    Sonic 1 obviously started it all and it had its share of flaws, but I'd take that game any day over Sonic 2. THAT game is an overrated mess whose pitfalls are the sole reason Retro here even exists... Ya know, the scrapped levels? Please drop the crap about how great it did in sales because that doesn't translate to how mindnumbingly boring and incomplete it is. Sonic 3/Sonic & Knuckles may have had their production issues causing what should have been one solid game to split, but Sega capitalized on that and gave us the lock-on and made it possible regardless. Who else went that far to accomplish something that innovative for the fanbase? No one.

    Sonic 1 and 3K, and even CD are what you should look for in what made Sonic amazing during the Genesis era.

    The Boost era was a spot-on perfect style for what Sonic should feel like in 3D. It was like handling rollercoaster ride. It was thrilling. That might sound weird to you guys, but that's how Unleashed and Generations felt to me once I memorized the level layout and blasted through. It encouraged me to get faster and faster times. But this Lost World nonsense is not Sonic. I'm sorry but I'm not playing a slow, puzzle-like Mario game with Sonic. Nu uh. Fuck that. If I wanted that, then I'd go play a fucking Mario game... as if there aren't enough of those hanging around. So I don't see why Sega had to try to appeal to Nintendo fans so damn much.

    That's why their formula fails. First, they get the perfect formula. Then, they wanna try something new and screw Sonic b-hole. Then they go back to the drawing table, make something near-perfect that only gets better. And then, they take it and throw it the fuck away! And they then try something new again! And it blows! I don't know guys, you tell me what hasn't been said. Sega is on some shit.
     
  14. winterhell

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    The Spindash in Sonic 2 can feel more like an afterthought. Without it the game is very playable and a completely different experience. There is only 1 half-loop in Metropolis and couple of bosses that are hard to pass without it.
     
  15. Palas

    Palas

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    I've said it before, Imma say it again. Sonic isn't about speed because speed is within the context of movement. Classic Sonic is all about movement and dictated by one single action button. That means the level design is the sole responsible for giving both what the player wants and what the player doesn't want. It is an intrinsic contradiction, and what we call momentum is what happens when the player conquers this contradiction, using the level design to go through the challenges the level design itself imposed.

    That said, "playground" is not the word I'd use (not anymore) because you have a clear objective - go "forward". The level design isn't made for you to show off - showing off has a specific function here, which is to further use the level design in your favour in order to go forward more efficiently.
     
  16. Jayextee

    Jayextee

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    Can still stage races in a playground, bro.
     
  17. OKei

    OKei

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    Well, nothing could have saved the Dreamcast from Sega's irresponsible and bullheaded spending that led to that console's demise. Sega had dug themselves to a grave for while starting with the start of the Saturn era. But yeah Adventures 1 & 2 sure helped, just not enough.

    I digress though.
     
  18. Epsilonsama

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    This myth of games growing stale is quite honestly one of the most pervasive myths today. I for one love Megaman to death and never had problem shelling cash to buy a Megaman game back in the day and would do so again if Capcom ever decides to release new 2D Classic Megaman games. If you love something, you don't care how many times it served to you. Imagine going to a dinner and asking for a classic steak and instead you get steak with cream whip. You would ask the cook what the fuck is this and he would say its a new creative steak, but you just wanted a good ol steak. The point is that as long as something sells you should keep making it. If CoD sells, well make more. If 2D Mario sells, well make more. Something IMO grows stale when it stop selling, only then do you need to reinvent yourself. If Sonic Generations and Sonic Colors sold, Sonic Team should have sticked with that instead of reinventing the wheel with Lost World. I expect them to reinvent the wheel again.
     
  19. Candescence

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    Lost World's main problem was its misdirected focus - too much gimmicky bullshit, not enough focus on the parkour mechanics, and Sega didn't go nearly far enough with said mechanics. We should be seeing Prince of Persia-style parkour extended on to momentum mechanics, not just a wall run and a ledge climb (though both of these mechanics went a long way to enabling speedrunners to perform some crazy shit). Sure, the first try with a new, promising formula might not turn out right, but Unleashed sucked hard too, and both Colours and Generations are both leagues better because they got rid of most of the bad bits of Unleashed (the horrid level design, the medal collecting, etc). If Sonic Team actually refined the parkour mechanics and put most if not all of their focus on designing the game around the core gameplay, they might actually have a hit on their hands.

    Thing is, the Boost formula had literally nowhere to go after Generations. It was so fundamentally inflexible that any other games after that would've just been the same damn thing with a new coat of paint. Not that it was really great to begin with, I'm not exactly a fan of corridor level design. Lost World's core gameplay, even as unrefined as it is, I absolutely welcome, because it's far more flexible and more friendly to more open level design.
     
  20. muteKi

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    The funny thing is that with what you're saying, the logical extension of implementing more elaborate for the parkour system isn't too different from what you'd see in the werehog -- leveling up the werehog to maximum basically makes the combat components irrelevant to gameplay because you can just run through enemies with a single hit -- you'd just combine the wall running with a few swinging-from-ropes and climbing-up-poles bits.

    And after having played it, it's pretty clear that the platforming in this:



    Is really not all that different from this:



    So the general concern of running out of game too quickly because of Sonic's speed isn't a problem. Just don't separate the slower-bits-where-you-might-carry-things-or-do-more-elaborate-platforming as strongly as usual.
    Like you say, basically the same idea as Prince of Persia just with a blue hedghog.

    But this to me is the money quote:
    Because this is the general problem with Sonic since 1999 -- as soon as the reigning Sonic formula actually *works* they have to go with something new because the design ethos has run its course. Generations is Unleashed done more-or-less correctly. Unleashed Wii is Sonic Adventure 2 if SA2 wasn't shit (anybody complaining about overly short, flat, or empty levels in Unleashed Wii really ought to go back and replay Metal Harbor, City Escape, and Sky Rail -- and then Crazy Gadget as a reminder that flat and short is still better than flat and long, especially as a near-final level). Sonic Advance 3 is what Sonic Advance 2 should have been. Sonic Colors DS -- and to some degree Rush Adventure before it -- is Sonic Rush done right.

    Though of course there are the regressions that come around with completely new platforms where they're not dealing with ports. Heroes definitely is repetitive (and had too much of an influence on how Shadow handles) and 06 is best considered a nonentity, and both were done in a time of relative financial insolvency (just like this new one, fancy that)



    [Sonic 4's an unusual exception to these rules in that Episode 2 turned from Episode 1's bland-and-forgettable experience to one that's frustrating and often insufferable (tag action removes any sense of momentum in the game), but they couldn't rightly try to make a game that followed too closely to the classics after Generations since it would be too obviously inferior -- so you get these bizarre level combinations of snowy-labyrinth-carnival and desert-refinery-wasteland, like the level designers were playing darts with gimmick concepts. At least the bosses are somewhat coherent.]