Ken Pontac and Warren Graff are implied to be no longer writing for the series.

Discussion in 'General Sonic Discussion' started by Sonic5993, Jan 29, 2021.

  1. Dark Sonic

    Dark Sonic

    Working on my art!
    I actually think Orbot is fine. A sarcastic assistant begrudgingly working for Eggman suits him. Cubot though needs to fuck off. He adds nothing except for "hurr hurr random."
  2. Well they're doing that now given all of these mandates they're enforcing on the comics :V

    Maybe, maybe not. Ain't like we have any way of knowing. The "Shadow bias" made sense in SA2 since it was his debut game, so of course you need to establish who the character is and why we should care about him. (By contrast, does anyone give a shit about the Deadly Six? Didn't think so). The only time it really got egregious was in 06, but Shadow is still one of the main characters in that game, so the fault really lies in not developing Sonic's scenario enough.
  3. Overlord


    Now playable in Smash Bros Ultimate Moderator
    Berkshire, England
    Learning Cymraeg
    I mean, there is a reason why this character has come up independently several times (albeit in different shades). Snivley on the American side and Grimer in StC both spring to mind as assistants to the good doctor with differing levels of devotion, though of the three I do enjoy Orbot the most as a games-workable assistant.

    I don't hate Cubot, but I'd not be disappointed with him being relegated to a lower importance role.
  4. Dark Sonic

    Dark Sonic

    Working on my art!
    Ya design wise Cubot makes the most in game universe sense. Snively and Grimer don't fit in at all (although I liked the post Archie reboot Snively redesign that gave him the clean shaved look with beard). The Sonic X robot assistants were somewhat orbot and Cubot esq too if I remember, also begrudging assistants. Underground had those weird things... idk what they were about. And of course Scratch, Grounder, and Coconuts but those were basically the three stooges in robot form.

    Oddly if Sonic kept going with the nightmare approach that they were originally thinking of, Grimer would have worked perfectly.
  5. well which Orbot are we referring to? Unleashed!Orbot or Colors!Orbot, because he got a bit of a characterization change with the shift to Colors and onward. yea, I can take or leave him. If he's gone, I won't miss him. He's purely a pontaff character and everything that implies.
  6. big smile

    big smile

    To me, Eggman seems too egoistic to have one of his creations bad mouth him (or be lazy and incompetent). I guess maybe you could put a spin on it, that he wants Orbot's Ai to be as close to real life and so he's secretly proud that Orbot's capable of such freewill.

    However, a lot of the time, Orbot/Cubot just seem to be there so Eggman can deliver exposition without seeming like he's talking to himself. And in Adventure to 06 he managed fine without henchmen, so I don’t think he really needs sidekicks.
  7. Beltway


    Temptive Bongwater, Sealed in Can Member
    Sega of Darkest Peru
    college courses / anime trash crusader
    On the topic of sidekicks, I'm mildly surprised we haven't had at least a couple of mainline plot-heavy games where Metal Sonic actually served as a proper lackey for Eggman. It's mostly been smaller/spinoff games like Sonic 4 Episode II or the Rivals games(?) where you had Metal actively carrying out Eggman's tasks or fighting with him throughout the story. More often than not he's just used for one event like in Mania and Forces.

    As for Orbot and Cubot...I'm kinda with Dark Sonic; where I can take Orbot (and bring him closer to how he was in Unleashed) and leave Cubot. But I would be happy if --defying all logic and canon-- we could get the AoSTH Scratch/Grounder/Coconuts trio back :V
  8. Xilla


    Beeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeep Member
    They were also recycled from an earlier series TMS did in the early 90s, "Rescue Kids" or something:

    • Informative Informative x 14
    • List
  9. IT should be noted that Eggman had a lot less focus from Adventure to 06, serving more as the obstacle to the heroes with the actual narrative focus being on whatever new character debuted in the game. In Adventure, the only time you see anything from Eggman's perspective was in Gamma's campaign, which was short-lived after he defected. The Dark story is him at his most prominent, and Shadow and Rouge serve somewhat the same purpose the robot henchmen did, giving Eggman someone to bounce off of, but the Dark storyline isn't about Eggman, it's about Shadow so same as Gamma. And after that, Eggman is more or less an afterthought; he's kidnapped for most of Heroes, only communicating with the Chaotix in brief messages, and he's an afterthought in Shadow's game and 06 as well.

    It wasn't until Unleashed that they really highlight his character without the focus being on another, more important character and sure enough, that was the debut of Orbot. And this Eggman focus would be consistent through the entire next decade. So it does seem like the writers felt like Eggman needed someone to play off of if they were gonna give him character focus beyond just being an antagonistic force for Sonic and co to fight.

    So I can imagine that if they were gonna get rid of Orbot and Cubot, Eggman would go right back to just playing the villain since he'd no longer have a character to interact with. In fact, that's probably the impetus behind the use of henchman for him. If Eggman has nobody to bounce off of, he's kind of boring in all honestly.
  10. Taylor


    I like Pontac/Graff's scripts more than Maekawa but to me, that's because they had easier concepts to work with. Meanwhile Maekawa was given more complex tasks (writing a game with 4 playable teams), or just downright stupid concepts like having Sonic romance a human princess. I wouldn't mind his return, but I'm definitely in the camp of "give Ian Flynn a shot already ffs"

    That all being said...assuming the new game is coming out this year (which seems to be the case), then Pontac/Graff have probably already written for it.
  11. I really wanted something on the same substance of Sonic Unleashed script / story again. The story on this game managed to be both fun / silly and serious when it needed.
  12. Dek Rollins

    Dek Rollins

    size of a tangerine Member
    I don't think I'd want to see Maekawa return. I actually like SA2's story, but everything else from the time period after that got worse. I'd take Maekawa over Pontaff, but neither are ideal. I'm also not necessarily sold on the idea that Ian Flynn should be writing the games. I'm not saying he's a bad writer, but I don't think he's the savior of the franchise either.

    I just want more stories like SA1 and the classics (do we know who wrote the classic stories/prologues?).

    I agree with those saying Cubot should go. I don't particularly like either Orbot or Cubot. I don't care for the designs and I don't think they're interesting or entertaining as characters. But if one has to stay, let it be Orbot.
  13. qwertysonic


    creating the biggest sonic collection
    I say good riddance to Pontaff. I don't like any of the stories from Colors on; they're offensively dull. Even the jokes don't make it fun because they always seem to fail the landing. Say what you want to about SA2 to 06's story lines, at least they had some semblance of consistency.

    I really liked seeing how Shadow's character grew and evolved throughout his trilogy. The StH was a bad game and the story was garbage, but it was cool to see how Shadow goes from wanting to take revenge on humanity for the death of Maria in SA2, to committing to working through his past to find the truth. (working to find the truth is a really big first step to putting away hate). To going so far as to work with GUN in Sonic 06.

    In the end when Mephiles informs him that humanity will eventually turn its back on him his response is still to fight for what is right. "If the world chooses to become my enemy....I will fight like I always have!."

    Or the character development we see for Tails or Amy in SA1 continuing on to SA2. We got to see these characters grow and learn, but for the past decade that character growth has been ignored and they've been relegated to 1-dimensional caricatures of themselves.
    • Agree Agree x 5
    • Like Like x 1
    • List
  14. BadBehavior


    I'm sorry but who was listening to Baldy Nosehair and thinking "ah yes, finally, I can take a game franchise about a blue hedgehog fighting a guy that looks like an egg seriously"?
  15. I like to point to unleashed and heroes as being the two best examples of stories that knew how to be both serious in tone and lighthearted in delivery. To me, these two games are what the status quo of sonic writing should be built around. They're not without their faults, for sure, but even as a SA2 stan myself, I gotta give these two props
  16. I honestly cannot say for certain what we're gonna get for the next decade of Sonic games, but given the vocal amount of complaints labeled towards Pontaff's games and whatnot, I'm almost certain we're going to get something that takes itself a bit more seriously.

    But you know what, I honestly want the same kind of confidence I saw that led to characters like Knuckles and Shadow being such a fan favorite characters, and long standing staples. The confidence to deliberately eschew everything that came before and establish new ground is what made the games those character debuted in such long remembered titles.

    Sonic 3 is such a massive game from Sonic 2, and it took years before people started to appreciate it over it's predecessor, and I feel the same is true for Sonic Adventure 2 and Sonic Adventure. Both of those games were not afraid of doing new and crazy things, and introducing so many new elements of the series. Naturally, it led to them being controversial as hell, the legacies both games established is pretty firm. Sonic 3 is wildly considered the pinnacle of 2D Sonic, and Sonic Adventure 2 is wildly considered "the last good Sonic game".

    That's what I want; confidence. I don't want Classic throwbacks, and I don't want Adventure throwbacks. I want the series to put its best foot forward and not be so afraid in establishing new groundwork. Introduce a new major character and give them the same level of love you gave to Knuckles, and Shadow. Don't be so beholden by fan demand and just embrace some new shit even if it means you gotta push out the old guard.


    I think the humor itself in Colors was pretty good, and Generations itself was okay in most respects (I do like that final scene with both Eggmen stuck together), but the story direction from 2010 onward has been consistently weak with almost nothing of the old magic to offer, classic Sonic or otherwise. You have neither the visual almost magical fantasy larger than life appeal of the classic era games (something which stylistically carried on into SA1, imho), nor the sci-fi animesque storylines of the later Adventure Era up through 06. Sure, the former was simplistic and the latter could get overly convoluted, but each had their own atmosphere and appeal which made them enjoyable in their own right, outside of a few blatant gaffes (Elise, Blaze's confusing story, Chris Thorndyke in X, ect.)

    Colors lost the best elements of both and substituted them for a deliberately simple plot which was hard to emotionally invest in. Rather than admitting the flaws in their previous attempts and refining them, they just stopped trying entirely. Naturally, part of this came about because of the tension between what classic fans want and what 3D fans wanted, but we just ended up with the 3D games throwing out a lot of stuff that did make their storylines enjoyable.

    I'm not sure what the solution is. Trying to make 3D talking furry video game mascots into fleshed out characters has always seemed like a bit of a fools errand, and yet some of my best memories growing up were storylines from 90s and early 2000s era Sonic, western and eastern. But then, maybe I just have bad taste according to the internet? Who knows. I somehow can enjoy Adventure 1 and 2 plotlines, Sonic CD and 3's world building, early Archie (yes, even some of Penders' work, though the man in general is just trash now), Japanese Sonic X and SATAM era stories equally despite their vast differences.

    Generations and Mania were the only time when I ever felt any emotional attachment to Sonic's worlds again. And maybe some elements of the recent film. Everything else since 2010 has pretty much made me give up on the franchise ever having any kind of real quality storytelling ever again.

    I guess the Sonic Boom cartoon was pretty funny at least.
  18. Azookara


    yup Member
    The direction that came with the Pontac/Graff combo vs the direction spearheaded by Shiro Maekawa is like asking if you want to watch a trashy Saturday morning cartoon vs a trashy shonen. Do I really gotta choose between these two? They’re two shitty extremes that held the series back. Even if they didn’t have 100% control over the games they wrote for, their writings are complimentary of what each era stood for.

    Games from the era before Pontaff not written by Maekawa (SA1, Rush / Rush Adventure, Unleashed) are much more suitable examples than either option. Light action-adventure stories, some high stakes, some silly fun, a sprinkle of drama (without the melo-), some anime influence, some cartoon shenanigans. Characters with respectable characterization, but not overbearing. Why not look for something like those?

    I don’t know why the answer was always to go to one extreme or the other. You can’t satisfy a serviceable chunk that way, as Sega doing things like that has only led to further division. Shit is silly lmao.
    Last edited: Jan 30, 2021
  19. The movie establishes that you CAN make good and thought provoking character arcs for furry mascot characters. Shadow's entire existence and enduring popularity are built on the foundation established by his story arc.

    If people are still held up on the idea that you can't make compelling or good characters because they're furry mascots, then that just tells me you're ignoring reality in favor of your beliefs.

    Zootopia is literally one of the most successful Disney films, and guess what it stars? Furry mascots.
    Last edited: Jan 30, 2021
  20. So what about the content not written by Pontaff? Like the Sonic Boom cartoon?

    Also, Maekawa wrote both Riders games sooooo lol.