IDW Megathread

Discussion in 'General Sonic Discussion' started by Dark Sonic, Jan 22, 2018.

  1. Frostav

    Frostav

    Member
    494
    146
    43
    I've just realized that the reason a lot of the new characters IDW introduced such as Tangle and Whisper are so appealing is because they're designed like Sonic OC's and not actual Sonic characters. Not joking lmao, canon Sonic characters have honestly pretty limited designs and tend to remain very simplistic. I cannot ever see Sonic Team themselves designing a lemur character. I'm glad IDW's artists/charadesigners have the freedom to get creative because as a guy who follows a lot of really good Sonic fanartists I'm honestly a bit disappointed at how many amazing designs they make, that I know Sonic Team would never try themselves. The mobian character "template" can do way more than the actual Sonic creators ever use it for.
     
  2. Well the designs have to be approved by Sega; the funny thing about it is that many fans of the characters love them because they feel like they fit in with the rest of the series.




    I honestly like the IDW-exclusive characters a lot, mainly because they're not shackled by the same rules and mandates the game characters are bound by; they're allowed to grow, emote, and deviate as much as they want since the book is more or less designed around them. Might not be everyone's cup of tea, but honestly this book really is highlighting how limited a game exclusive world is.
     
  3. Frostav

    Frostav

    Member
    494
    146
    43
    I mean, yes, but the IDW characters still feel like they're just more creative than what the actual Sonic creators have made. They still fit into the world because they use the basic mobian design language. Sonic Team barely makes new characters nowadays anyway, though. Infinite was the last and...well, actually I really like his design, not gonna lie, but he was a one-note villain who's gonna be abandoned forever so it's a big waste. The IDW character existing solely as drawn 2D characters helps a lot too, admittedly, as the current "modern mobian" design language works a lot better in 2D than 3D (that hour-long video by new frame plus on the animation of the video games really opened my eyes to this).
     
  4. Hitlersaurus Christ

    Hitlersaurus Christ

    Not a nazi, maybe Jesus, definitely a dinosaur Member
    583
    33
    28
    glorious nippon
    SNOIC GENERATONS PLUS
    I think Tangle seems like an official design. The others vary but I also think Rough and Tumble fit in fairly well. The art style of the comic itself makes everyone look more like OCs to me including the game characters though.
     
  5. Starduster

    Starduster

    The next stage of evolution for himbos Member
    350
    129
    43
    Britain
    Art...always art...
    I'd say they're absolutely game characters. Take the Freedom Fighters, if you will. Even post-reboot, while they were redesigned to look closer to the main cast, and do so for the most part, are still ultimately based off of a cartoon from the 90s that was a radical reinterpretation of the series compared to the original Japanese canon. And while the likes of Sally and Rotor do look like they could fit right at home with the modern characters thanks to their 2010s redesigns, I feel that IDW characters project that more because they have been designed like game characters and/or with specific elements of the original canon in mind.

    Sally is a group leader. A princess. She has no innate powers to speak of, only her beam blades in the reboot. While I am a big fan of her redesign, you can not use it to intuit these things about her. And to be clear, that's not a failing of the artist responsible for the redesign. I count Ben Bates among my top 5 favourite Sonic artists, and I'm elated that he seems to be dipping his toes into the IDW book with cover illustrations. The fact of the matter is, Sally was initially conceptualise to fill a role in a group rather than to have specific physical abilities.

    Compare and contrast with Tangle. The first thing you notice about her is her big, bushy tail. The tail she uses extensively in her everyday life. The tail she uses as a third arm in a fight, as a slingshot to help Sonic and Blaze reach a Badnik carrier, as a tripwire, as a restraint and so on, so forth. Ian Flynn and Tyson Hesse have explicitly state that Tangle was designed around the infamous reject Sonic concept of a rabbit that could pick up and throw things with its ears. She was designed around her abilities and that is very easy to intuit in her design.

    To make another comparison, Bunnie and Whisper. By all accounts, Bunnie embraces what I've said more than Whisper, right? Her cybernetic nature is patently clear, whereas, while one can make out Whisper as some kind of markswoman, her weapon is strange and nothing about her design at a glance spells out that she has Wisp companions that act as ammunition. And I will concede, I certainly feel that Whisper's more detailed design only really works in the setting of the games as it exists now, but I suppose that's to be expected since her higher fidelity design flows from a far more intricate concept than Tangle or Bunnie. However, that concept, and much of Whisper's design, comes directly from Sonic Forces. Functionally speaking, she's the logical endpoint of the game's Wispon system, and much of her gear is lifted from designs seen in Forces, with her Wisp translator mask being based on specific headwear found in the game. Meanwhile, Bunnie's core concept, while fluently communicated through her design, requires the context of SatAM/Archie and the idea of Roboticisation that has never been in line with how such a concept has been presented in the official canon.

    And the list goes on. My point is that the IDW characters have the benefit of being created in the context of the series almost 30 years removed from what it was when the Freedom Fighters were. The franchise has, in the interim years, solidified the concepts and systems of its setting and, thanks to advancements in technology and the maturing of the games industry as a whole, now exists in parity between the home market of Japan and the foreign, albeit more receptive, audience in the West. The original SatAM characters were created by people several degrees removed from the most direct authors of Sonic and his world, while the IDW staff have been working pretty much as closely with the current stewards of the franchise as one can get without being a part of the team working directly on the games. They've been able to communicate far more easily with the likes of Iizuka; to be able to view materials and documentation that even we hardcore fans haven't seen that allows them explore how Sonic is made and what the thought process is for the creators behind the franchise.

    And to reiterate, the IDW designs being seen as more "authentic" is in no way indicative of any difference in skill between creative teams, but the contexts in which they were made and remade. As much improved as I feel the reboot designs are, they still had to adhere to the core traits of characters created when the franchise was far less narratively stable.
     
  6. The KKM

    The KKM

    Welcome to the nExt level Member
    2,179
    29
    28
    Portugal
    IDW's Sonic the Hedgehog comic books
    Sega directly co-designs the characters with us. They're not overbearing on it but they definitely get as much a say as the editors do and are active and helpful in it too, with design suggestions, drawings of ideas, etc. It's a group effort. Compared to past designs in the previous comic, designs like Tangle or Rough are much more "game characters", comparable to something like how Sticks was created by back and forth between Sonic Team, Big Red Button and the TV crew.
     
    • Informative Informative x 4
    • Like Like x 2
    • List
  7. Pengi

    Pengi

    Member
    1,398
    243
    43
    99% of Sonic fan characters are Jake the Hedgehog, the cool dude with an attitude who wears jeans and a t-shirt and has spikey bangs.

    As Starduster said, the video game and IDW characters are both designed around their "super powers" and/or the function they serve in Sonic's world. They're not designed to be cool dude self-inserts. Nobody's OC is Clutch the Opossum or Nite the Owl, because they're characters designed to serve a specific function and not just to act as the designer's avatar.
     
  8. Starduster

    Starduster

    The next stage of evolution for himbos Member
    350
    129
    43
    Britain
    Art...always art...
    Gonna be honest, like Belle, I'm not a fan of Clutch either, with his weird proportions, wearing of a suit and gold teeth. I guess Evan Stanley just pushes the boundaries of the series designs conventions much more than I like. A character like Clutch would've been better realised with a fur pattern that *looks* like a suit jacket imo. Maybe part of the reason why I feel Sonic works better alongside anime humans is because of their mundanity. This is true of Forces as well due to the weirdness in proportions of the avatar, but all the civilians in that game look like basic fan OCs.
     
  9. Sonic's basic design, whether Classic or Modern, is simple enough where it leaves a LOT to the imagination; if you can draw two circles and a stick, you got the basic design template there. Anything else is just accessories. So fans just tend to go wild, and Sega aren't exactly as strict of what "Fits" Sonic's world than some fans are. So you get a lot of variations of what really defines a Sonic character design.
     
  10. Dek Rollins

    Dek Rollins

    size of a tangerine Member
    516
    216
    43
    Personally I'm not that fond of the IDW OCs. I don't necessarily mind them, but the cast of what Sega calls the "modern universe" was already a bit bloated before this comic started. Starting a new comic where the Archie cast is left in the dust would seem like the perfect opportunity to keep the cast at a more reasonable size, since it would be returning to the primary game cast. But then they decide to begin re-bloating the cast all over again. I know that new stories need new side villains, but I feel like they just started adding more characters to the comic for the sake of it.

    My primary issue with the OCs is that I don't find them particularly interesting as characters, and some of them don't serve important roles in the cast. There are so many characters to use already.

    Design-wise, I don't hate the OCs, but I don't like them very much either. Tangle is fine, but Starline I think looks kind of weird, etc.
     
  11. As I said before, the IDW OC's are actually allowed to be characters compared to the Game Cast, who are sadly pretty restricted in what can be done with them. Best example is that whole business with "Is it right to kill Eggman' arc with Sonic & Shadow, because we know for a fucking fact that Eggman isn't going to die, and they're not going to allow Shadow to kill him, so it's kind of an inappropriate question to ask because the obvious solution is that Eggman HAS to live.

    That's not to say that NOTHING can be done, but I do get the feeling that having original characters t work with is just easier on the writers if they need certain roles to be filled.
     
  12. Frostav

    Frostav

    Member
    494
    146
    43
    lmao no. I don't feel like posting fifty random ref sheets but this hasn't been true for years. Most OC's are way better designed than the actual Sonic cast these days. Especially the ones designed by adult fanartists (as in ones who are adults, lol, not the...other meaning of the term XD).
     
    Last edited: Sep 18, 2021
  13. Eeeehh, that's ultimately subjective and I don't really agree with it. I'm not saying I don't like some OC's, but I don't think there's one I would rank above the main cast.
     
  14. Levi Church

    Levi Church

    Icon art is made by FullmetalDubs Member
    20
    3
    3
    I was just rewatching some old Bumblekast episodes and just found out Ian Flynn teased Imposter Syndrome last year when talking about the Ashura and Wechnia glitches. Time stamp 53:00
     
  15. Sounds more like he's talking about Dr. Starline
     
  16. Forte

    Forte

    I speak better after three beers Member
    I like Starline. He reminds me somewhat of a certain white echidna from that other comic a bit, but overall he's a fun character.

    I was wondering, how Sega would mandate the clone stuff with Surge, but if the last issue is any indication, Ian is going with the "robot clone" route.
     
  17. What makes you say that? And also, who is he cloning? And why are they called imposters? Who are they impostering?
     
  18. Dek Rollins

    Dek Rollins

    size of a tangerine Member
    516
    216
    43
    Sonic and Tails, obviously.
     
  19. ...okay. they look nothing alike. Who is being fooled by these guys?
     
  20. Dek Rollins

    Dek Rollins

    size of a tangerine Member
    516
    216
    43
    We don't know how the actual story will unfold so I'd recommend reserving judgement. But it seems pretty clear what they're going for with this. Surge is a tenrec, a hedgehog-like animal, and Kit is a fennec, a type of fox. Surge has electric powers; Tails is afraid of lightning. Kit has water powers; Sonic is afraid of water. I'm certain they will be evil clones of Sonic and Tails.

    And I don't know if the use of the word "imposter" is meant to imply they will literally pretend to be Sonic and Tails and take their places. That seems to be what's confusing you.