Let's talk about the Sonic Advance trilogy

Discussion in 'General Sonic Discussion' started by Laughingcow, Sep 30, 2018.

  1. Dark Sonic

    Dark Sonic

    Working on my art!
    I'm part of the group that prefers Advance 3 to Advance 2. I like the team mechanic, the special stage entry, while still bullshit, it less bullshit than Advance 2's, and I like the art style. The level design is a bit shit at times though I won't argue with anyone there, but I find playing as Knuckles and Tails kind of circumvents a lot of those problems.

    Advance 2 was too fast for it's own good. The screen's too small and it's hard to see what's coming and they just love throwing bottomless pits your way, and of course the good ol Bitch slap of death boss is always a favorite. Also of course the special stage entry method was the most bullshit that's ever been seen in the entire series. The stages themselves are ok. But then you have to do all 7 emeralds as each character to get Amy. What the fuck kind of method is that? It's one thing getting the rings as Tails and Cream and even Knuckles, they can backtrack pretty easily. Sonic though? Awful.

    Advance 1 is the best of the games but I also find it to be the ugliest. They were going for that more Adventure style but it just didn't translate well to the GBA IMO. Also Amy's gameplay was a bit too slow for my tastes.

    Of course with all these games I haven't gone back and beaten them in years. I don't think I own Advance 2 anymore (I honestly forget) but Advance 1 and 3 have had 100% save files for a while on their original cartridges and I don't plan on going back to 100% either of them ever again. There's little to no reward for doing so anyway as it was back in the era where Super Sonic was reserved for the final boss only, so if I'm going to play them I'm just going to play them for a bit here and there and then put it down again.
  2. Speaking of GBA-era Sonic, how about that Sonic Battle? :v
  3. Jason


    *Results not lab tested. Member
    I've recently been feeling the itch to pick Battle up again. I beat it when it was new, but never had anybody to play with because portable multiplayer pre-WiFi was a nightmare. My fondest memory was cheating to get Emerl the insta-kill attacks and wreck shit in the story mode.

    Advance 1 I've played the most, and is my favorite of the trilogy. It sits around Sonic 1 and CD in my overall list, not as good as 3K, 2, or Mania now. Being 8 years removed from 3K, it still filled that void nicely. Considering when it released, it is a much better introduction to the series for Nintendo players than Adventure 2 Battle was, and I'm still miffed that's what people latched on to.

    Advance 2 has better music and presentation, and I dug the trick system, but the level design ranges from meh to bad. Also too fast for its own good. Never did the Special Stages legit. Cream is fun to abuse bosses with.

    Advance 3 has a lot good music too, and the tag system is fun. I didn't like the visual direction as much, level design and getting Emeralds aren't the most fun, albeit less so.

    All of them are worth playing at least once. Too bad THQ had to publish them in the US and it's rights are probably in limbo now, considering they're all on Wii U in Japan.
  4. Windii


    Shadow Mahjong Fighter Member
    I adore Sonic Advance 3. The music is generally way improved over the previous games, it's fun to abuse certain team combinations, and the stages are fun to explore. It also neatly wrapped up the plot point from Battle and was an overall satisfying conclusion to the whole GBA Sonic lineup. I couldn't think of a better ending sequence.

    Advance 2 definitely has the most bullshit true ending requirements (and rather annoying special stages too like geez), but on the whole I liked it. I've always found it satisfying to run through a stage perfectly without losing speed or getting hit once, and the bosses are exhilarating fun. Never did get any of the SP Rings without a walkthrough video though. :B

    The first Advance is the one I played the least and also much later than 2 and 3, and I actually found it kinda disappointing I couldn't reach the boost state like I could in the next two. Still a fun game though, and I actually like the quirky SA1 gameplay Amy has. You have to think of different ways to progress with her, and you can still get all the Chaos Emeralds if you're good enough.

    Battle is also a game I love to play, especially when I want to punch something or someone, although Emerl is goddamn useless until the end of the game for the most part and the way you get skills was really some horseshit. Why did it have to be so you have a chance of getting a skill you already own? I hate it. It's not even based on what you do in the fights; it's entirely random.

    (and I still have yet to play Pinball Party to completion)
  5. ICEknight


    Researcher Researcher
    I think Advance 1 is a great Sonic game... when you don't consider it a sequel to Sonic 3 & Knuckles, but more like an alternate sequel to Sonic 1 in the vein of Sonic CD. I love Amy's moveset in this game and would love to see it unchanged in a future Classic game

    I don't know what the heck happened with Advance 2's development, but it feels to me like a sequel made by people who didn't get what was good about the game they had just made. On the bright side, I think it may have made me appreciate Advance 1 better, after the initial "not as good as 3&K" shock.

    And as for Advance 3... I think it's an ok game, wouldn't mind buying a remake of it without buzzy music. The character combinations were really interesting and would be cool to see in some other game.
  6. Laughingcow


    Resident Edgelord PHD Member
    The level maps of the games are fairly interesting when you look at them.

    Advance 1 was clearly designed like a Classic Sonic game. Don't have much to else to say.

    Literally the first four zone maps look exactly the same i.e. running downhill. It isn't until they change it up with Sky Canyon (which everyone hates) that things shift. It's no wonder they all feel samey.

    Advance 3 looks fairly chaotic which isn't surprising. I think I may watch some speedruns to see if anyone can make sense of this.
    Edit: Nope. They cheat using a jumping glitch that happens if you have Sonic as your partner.
  7. HP Zoner

    HP Zoner

    Crash Mania
    One thing I liked about the first Advance was the sense of progression it had during the first couple of levels. Going from the beach to the woods in Neo Green Hill was neat, and the seamless transition into a literal bridge to the next zone was quite unique for a Sonic game. You could see the outskirts of a city just before entering the Secret Base that followed, and then... the idea was completely discarded until the Egg Rocket. I would have liked to see the entire game with transitions of this sort, because they felt more natural than those in S3&K and Mania, despite the lack of cutscenes. I don't think a Sonic game needs this sort of thing, but it's nice when they try to tie the locations together.
  8. LastingTime


    I enjoyed all of the advance series except for the death pits. They had great music and mips did an excellent job with the engine. Too bad they'd go on to make sonic colors and sonic rush. I liked sonic rush but it was not as good as advance.
  9. I loved Sonic Advance 1. All the throwbacks to the Sonic 2 Beta with the zone titles filled my teenage heart with glee shortly after discovering about it all.
    Sonic Advance 3 was fine. The mixing characters mechanic was cool.

    But christ, Sonic Advance 2. Hold right. Push A occasionally. Win level. Ignore special stages.
  10. Xiao Hayes

    Xiao Hayes

    My name's Martin Member
    Advance 1:
    I liked this game, because it felt Sonic enough after so many years waiting for a new decent title, but it was the equivalent of adventure 1: have your last taste of the classic thing before moving entirely to the modern realm. Like the dreamcast title, it felt sort of a hybrid, as if both games were touching the same point of no return, only each one was on a different side of that point thanks to the number of dimensions they were on. bad points were that it felt short and easy save for special stages, since accessing and playing them was totally unattractive . I din't like having grinding rails either.

    Advance 2:
    Sometimes people says a game is forgettable, and I don't understand why, but now that I try to remember this game that in fact I owned (I lended it to my cousin and he lost it), the only things I can tell for sure are that I hated the auto-run bosses (well, I hate them in any game), and of course I outright ignored special stages if the game itself didn't appeal me. Besides that, I remember trying the new character, cream, and playing the first zone; the rest, is just gone from my head. I probably beat the game with at least one character, but nothing, I remember nothing else, but I don't think I hated it.

    Advance 3:
    I haven't played it, I think, except the very first act on an emulator. I didn't like it.

    Bonus tracks:
    I own a 2-in-1 cartridge containing Sonic Battle and Sonic Pinball Party, so...

    Sonic Battle:
    This game had some elements of my interest, such as having a large 3D arena to move around, the different arrangements and scenarios for more than 2 fighters... I also liked the plot despite not making very much sense finding a fists-only gamma clone and a returned chaos because of reasons. beating some enemies and training emerl was horrible, and the game overall was quite boring and I didn't felt comfortable enough with its gameplay.

    Sonic Pinball Party:
    Despite some illustrations, it's just a generic pinball game, and it's not very interesting to play as that either, so, I played just a couple of times and then ignored it.
  11. The first game is one of my absolute favorite Sonic games. I don't have much to say about the other two games, but I did own them as a kid. I probably played them a lot less due to their lack of Tiny Chao Gardens (I never unlocked it in Advance 2). Sonic Advance to me was like what the original Sonic the Hedgehog was to some people, it was my first game on the Game Boy Advance and I never played any side scrolling Sonic games at that point. Prior to owning Advance, I had only played Adventure on Dreamcast, so most of what I knew of the series was existed in Advance as well.

    I love how all the characters play differently. I wouldn't really go out of my way to play as Amy as much as the other three, but I appreciate that she was basically a hard mode for the game. I also have a fond memory of looking up the game in one of those cheat books at Walmart and finding out about the Sonic & Tails mode and being blown away.

    I think the game plays great. I can only recall coming across a glitch once. Somehow I managed to get myself stuck in one of the indentations of the walls in the first level. Like I mentioned before, I didn't have the classic games to compare it to, but going back to it now I think it holds up. Level design is questionable at times, but not terrible. All the bosses are pretty unique as well.

    The special stages were a bit of a pain. I never legitimately beat the game with all the Chaos Emeralds when I was a kid. Sonic was my favorite character to play as, and he had the lowest chances of stumbling upon the springs leading to the stages. The stages themselves were visually appealing, but I could never get more than the first three emeralds because they were so hard to do. I didn't even realize there were Chao to collect in them until years later. The one good thing about the special stages was that they carried over between characters and you could go back and look for them after you beat the game.

    Some of my favorite music of the series is from this game. Listening to them again now I can tell that the sound that the Game Boy produced wasn't the best, but the compositions were what I cared about. I wish these songs would get remixed more. I remember spending a lot of time in the Sound Test listening to stuff. I also spent a lot of time in the multiplayer menu watching the Chao look back and forth listening to that song. I didn't know anyone else with the game so I never played the multiplayer back then, I just liked the waiting music.

    The real gem of this game when I was a kid was the Tiny Chao Garden. I know Chao are pretty hit or miss in the Sonic community, but I absolutely loved them. I spent so much time playing the mini games to save up rings. I had a Chao I named "Baby Joe" that was my one and only Chao for the longest time. Eventually I got Sonic Adventure 2 on the Gamecube. The Chao connectivity between the two games is still one of the coolest things ever to me. Unfortunately, this lead to the demise of Baby Joe, as when he crossed over to the 3D world, I didn't treat him the best because I didn't know the consequences of treating the Chao badly. He eventually died.

    Going to Advance 2. I don't think I ever beat the game, I always died on the sky stage. I hated how the special stages worked and I only ever got to the first one and never beat it. It was just too much to unlock them in under 10 minutes.

    Sonic Advance 3 I played more than 2, but I don't remember all that much about it. I definitely beat it, but was always upset that the Chao Gardens weren't the traditional ones from previous games. I was obsessed as a kid.
  12. Ashura96


    Damn, I feel kinda bad for people who struggled with Advance 3 lmao.

    1 - vanilla, safe, simple, got the job done in 2002, but got a bit boring after a while.


    3 - A bit all over the place for sure, but I still enjoyed it. No major issues other than introducing easily getting clipped and crushed by moving solid platforms (something the Taxman engine games also have an issue with :/ )
  13. Sir_mihael


    Overall I think of the Advance games very fondly. Three great games that all tried different things..

    Of course, Advance 1 being closest to the Mega Drive games is going to stay my personal favourite. Advance 2 is generally great. Advance 3 has some fuckawesome highlights and also some low points, but contains one of my favourite Super Sonic fights in the series.

    Also G-merl is love. Second to Metal Sonic.

    Not much else to say that hasn't already been covered really!
  14. Laughingcow


    Resident Edgelord PHD Member
    Perhaps but I still think more discussion can be fruitful. There's more to this than "Dimps! Stop putting death pits at the end of every zone!"

    Likewise, I advise anyone that hasn't to give all three games a try (I recommend mGBA if you go the emulation route). Formulate some thoughts and share them here.
  15. muteKi


    Fuck it Member
    I'm surprised Advance 3 is so disliked. I don't care for the music overall but I always thought it was the game Advance 2 should have been. Peppy but with more flexibility due to the team mechanic (i.e., other characters aren't as obsessively speed-docused as Sonic) and a lot less redundancy (I've come to appreciate Advance 2 more over the years, but I don't like having to beat the game with the emeralds as every character to unlock everything).