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Rail grinding: a worthwhile mechanic in 3D Sonic or too limiting?

Discussion in 'General Sonic Discussion' started by Frostav, Aug 31, 2020.

  1. Okay, seems like people misunderstood me...
    I'm not talking about bottomless pits, am I? I literally didn't even mention them. I'm talking about the physics and secret rails.
    Yeah, 06 has literally no rail physics lmao. But once again, I was also talking about hidden rails. Sa2, shadow, 06, and especially heroes are great at hiding obscure rails in places you run right past without thinking for a second you might be able to grind on certain set pieces. I'm almost done with the advance 2 video (it's turning out to be longer than the sa2 one. Neat), but heroes is next. I've spent days on heroes looking for every possible rail in every stage, and I'm hopeful I can get at least someone out there to (figuratively) jump forward in their chair and say "what the f***, you can grind on that?!".
  2. Stink Terios

    Stink Terios

    I can't think of a single hidden rail in Heroes, so I'm sure that video is gonna blow my mind.
  3. I love the grinding mechanic. It positively should remain and become even more of a staple of the 3D series. Honestly I would enjoy seeing return to the 2D series as well in a resurrected Rush-stlyed game.

    Rail grinding could evolve some, such as opening bonus or alternate paths if you hit a certain unbroken combo. For instance, Sonic could unlock a doorway that shaves off 30 or so seconds of a time-trial run by doing a certain number of tricks without missing a beat.
  4. Antheraea


    Bug Hunter Member
    somewhere in the midwest
    Minecraft skin (become bug)
    The quote you were backing up, which I was responding to, was

    and in Rail Canyon/Bullet Station + several other sections in Heroes, they are The Grinding Section. Rail Canyon/Bullet Stations are The Grinding Levels. SA2 did that also with Final Rush and Sky Rail. :V
  5. Fair enough, but I think the og quote was more talking about how rail sections now are very dull and uninteresting- very much on autopilot, but rail sections used to require you to do things like jump at the right time, balance, and switch rails to take completely different paths through the stage
  6. Metalwario64


    I haven't played regular 06, but I have played P-06 for the first time recently, and I think rails are handled pretty well there. I like how they take skill to use them to be able to reach alternate paths and secrets. I would have to imagine they were tidied up from the original game like everything else has been.
  7. ChaddyFantome


    Off the top of my head, Mystic mansion has a few. There is one of the stair cases for example.
  8. Nope lol. The stair rails aren't secret ones :D
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  9. Double post, but it's done!!

    #1. This game has more rails than Adventure 2. Poor Adventure 2 is turning in it's late-90s cool skater kid grave right now.

    #2. The only sonic games that have hang rails (afaik) can both be abbreviated to "SA2". Weird, huh?

    #3. I'm not sure if anyone's noticed, but I hide bonus footage at the end of my videos for the people who stick it out (or you can just be a dick and skip straight to it lol)

    The heroes video will be a while though. I've got some irl stuff to deal with for the next few days and then I have to work on some art stuff. I'll get around to it eventually lol
    Last edited: Dec 10, 2020
  10. Ok. So, here's the thing. I think the Rail-Grinding should stay. HOWEVER, it shouldn't be in the Boost games, because it would be obsolete, due to how much more momentum you could get from Boosting. If they were to essentially implement it into an Adventure Era-esque game, polish up the weirdness from SA2, then I think it wouldn't be a bad mechanic.
  11. ChaddyFantome


    I dont see Rails as necesarily incompatible with the Boost gameplay.
    Boost gameplay in regards to Speed provided by the boost is a lot simpler, arguably more shallow, but its not exactly bad or wrong either. Simply having less lazy application of rails would suffice to allow rails to be fine in that style, as well as giving the player more meaningful things to do while grinding. The Rush games for example actually had it to where you could and had to perform tricks while grinding. This made the process of grinding more active, as you tried to get as many tricks in per rail as possible. More would have to be done, but its not really an issue of the Boost existing.
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2020
  12. I think what they meant was that in adventure 2, it was faster to grind rails than it was to run. In the boost games, no matter what you're doing, the boost is always the same speed. The risk/reward of taking the difficult rails in exchange for greater speed is lost nowadays. :/
  13. ChaddyFantome


    Sure. But thats a comparison. The Boost games aren't really trying to be SA2. The real issue is less how similar to SA2 they are or not, and more how shallow their implementation has been.
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2020
  14. Eggnog


    I think rail grinding tends to be tedious in the boost games, but I do think it could work some way. They should be a high speed balancing act rather than a set piece IMO. Maybe there could be some kind of balancing QTE like the one from the Pro Skater games, where boosting would let you get through the rail faster but make it harder to balance. Falling would never kill you, just bring you to a slower path. Adding something like that could always just make the gameplay too needlessly complicated too I guess, but I think it could be cool if implemented properly
  15. Circlestar


    SS Rank Tricks! Member
    I do really like how Heroes handles rail grinding. The balance system is still there if you hold the crouch button down, and you can really build up some speed if you keep your balance, but mashing the crouch button to do flips all day is less effort and still gives you a bit of speed.

    Compared to SA2, I just prefer how grinding works in Heroes. I personally feel that grinding in Heroes is less punishing if you mess up your balance, as you can do a flip to get yourself moving again which also resets your balance. When I've played SA2, grinding feels real clunky when I do mess up my balance and I don't know how to get speed back.

    The rail switching in Heroes I've actually not had issues with. I've found that as long as you're not holding down the crouch button before pressing the jump button, you won't overshoot the rail you're trying to switch to.

    In the boost games, I can't think of a good way to make rails more interesting and less automated feeling without conflicting with how the boost works... Maybe disable boosting on rails but slowly grant boost energy for keeping a good balance instead of slowing you down?
  16. Billy


    RIP Oderus Urungus Member
    Colorado, USA
    Indie games
    I totally agree with this, as long as it also comes with the balance meter.
  17. ChaddyFantome


    Its the same thing in SA2 actually.
    I do agree that Heroes letting you get a kick jut of forward momentum was a positive change. There were more situations in Heroes where you might get inbetween a rail and run out of speed. Having something for the player to do to allow them to have some form of forward movement is necesary.
  18. Nova


    Rails can stay for two reasons - one, they add just a teensy bit of variety and on top of a lot of the other things dotted throughout levels, they can be used really well to stop the player getting bored. Two, they're cool. Sonic should be doing cool things.
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  19. Shade Vortex

    Shade Vortex

    The Black Vortex Member
    USA, WA.
    Twitch Streams
    Here's the thing. How SA2 used Rails organically with the levels was cool. How Heroes onwards (vast, expansive rails that go on for miles over bottomless pits), not so much. I did like some of the grinding sections from Unleashed, Generations and 06, though... But Heroes was the worst about it, especially the aptly named Rail Canyon. They need to use grinding in more interesting ways again, IMO.
  20. I would keep Rails as how they were in Adventure 2, especially in Final Rush where they are essentially platforms with a very limited time of when to act. Boost game play does ruin this though, as well as the homing attack working on rails as well.

    I do think you need something to do on rails as well more than just watching out for obstacles, a bit of shooting perhaps?