Shadow the Hedgehog - The Very Cool, Kid-Friendly Game for HaRdc0r3 EDGEl0rdz [Geek Critique Video]

Discussion in 'General Sonic Discussion' started by Josh, Nov 29, 2019.

  1. Despatche

    Despatche

    Member
    60
    2
    8
    Why would you even suggest something like that? Why do people genuinely believe that developers needing to be fired, because of some personal opinions that don't involve these developers shitting on the life of other human beings, is a good mindset we should all have?

    Please explain to me how pointing out that a concept that is almost a direct copy of a concept from another game by the same company, a concept that other game is famous for, is somehow ridiculous. Where are people even going with this train of thought? I've already explained why I brought it up and why it's relevant.
     
  2. Frostav

    Frostav

    Member
    153
    4
    18
    They actually did do that, but in such a half-assed and cursory way it doesn't really add to the game. A lot of the stages will have multiple routes for each objective but they're barely different from each other in terms of level design or aesthetic. And some stages will split off into one or two extra routes at the veeeeeeeeeery end (Cryptic Castle for one) but likewise, the "routes" are like one hallway or auto-scroller and then you're funneled to the mission objective.
     
  3. Despatche

    Despatche

    Member
    60
    2
    8
    For what it's worth, a lot of what Frostav is saying is more or less correct. I'm not saying Shadow is a perfect game here, none of these games are. I don't know why people assume so darned much.

    I would also like to point out that this...
    ...applies to the entire Sonic series, and is one of the biggest issues about the Mega Drive titles.
     
  4. Aerosol

    Aerosol

    FML and FU2 Moderator
    10,429
    13
    18
    Not where I want to be.
    Sonic (?): Coming summer of 2055...?
    I said none of this.

    Branching paths is not something that everybody credits OutRun with inventing. It's not even that unique a mechanic.

    I could be convinced Sonic Team "got it" from OutRun but you have the most irritating method of communication I've seen in a long time around here so...not by you. You know it's possible to make your point without coming across like you're talking down to everybody right?
     
  5. Blue Spikeball

    Blue Spikeball

    Member
    568
    14
    18
    I second Sid Starkiller' praise on people for giving their honest opinion without bandwagoning.

    That said, I'm surprised so many prefer Shadow to Heroes, or see them as equally bad. I know Heroes was never that popular, but I've always viewed Shadow as the game that expanded on everything that people disliked about previous 3d entries while adding even more problems.

    It expanded on the dreaded item hunting from SA2 by putting it in every level and adding far more "collectibles", yet it removed the hints and radar, making for a whole new level of tedium. Even in the missions that didn't involve item hunting, Shadow was awfully slow, being closer in speed to the non-speed characters from SA2 than Sonic. The oft-mocked ow-the-edge tone and the addition of guns certainly didn't help. The story was an incoherent mess, and one of its selling points was that it would finally shed some light on Shadow's origins, but most of the "reveals" came off as goofy retcons.

    It did have some good ideas, I'll give you that. But just like with Sonic '06, none of them were implemented well IMO.

    I thought the cyberspace levels were relatively enjoyable, though, as they felt fresh and unique.
     
    Last edited: Dec 3, 2019
  6. Sid Starkiller

    Sid Starkiller

    Member
    335
    17
    18
    Virginia, USA
    Paying off student loans
    How much slower was Knuckles compared to Sonic in SA2? I've never thought to run tests, but Knuckles is still quite speedy (faster than his stage design can really use, honestly).
     
  7. Multi Battler

    Multi Battler

    puniboy 4 president Member
    Nah, I don’t believe so, but I gotta draw the line somewhere: Out Run = extremely streamlined, thus never boring, Shadow = mission-based levels where plot is determined by the player’s actions.
     
  8. Blue Spikeball

    Blue Spikeball

    Member
    568
    14
    18
    Don't know specifics, but I would say Knuckles was a bit slower than Sonic. But what made all the difference was the level design. Since his stages weren't speed-oriented, they didn't have many slopes or dash panels. You spent most of the time gliding, rather than running, anyway.
     
    Last edited: Dec 3, 2019
  9. Despatche

    Despatche

    Member
    60
    2
    8
    Yes, they use the system in somewhat different ways appropriate for the design, but the system itself is obviously still the same. Out Run has simpler mechanics and doesn't have things like objectives, so all it needed to do was let the player choose directly. This isn't a slight against Out Run. Shadow does have these objectives, partially descended from Adventure missions, and so it makes sense for the branching path system to depend on completing these objectives. This isn't praise for Shadow.

    I implied that you enable those people. That's what you're doing with your "higher standards" talk, and with repeatedly trying to frame simple facts about how a game works as just someone's personal opinion.

    There are two groups of people that do not credit Out Run with the branching path system, especially the specific "triangle" design (where each new stage "tier" gets a higher number of unique stages) that Out Run itself features (which Shadow also has). The first group are the people who know that TX-1 exists. The second group are the people who have never heard of Out Run.

    Very few games actually use branching paths that radically change a game like this at all, let alone the exact way Out Run did it, and especially games with this trait that happen to be made by Sega. I can't even think of another Sega game that uses this system, but I'm sure at least one other exists.

    I can't even say something as simple as "Shadow isn't as bad of a game as people think it is.", that simple little sentence, before I even get to begin to explain why I just said that, without the entire Sonic community screaming "SAYS FUCKING WHO?" as hard as they can in type. The entire situation is already rigged from the start. I could write an honest-to-goodness thesis or create a very elaborate video on why the complaints against the game don't really make sense, while also addressing the ones that do, as politely and as succinctly as physically possible; the vast majority of the Sonic community would laugh at it or even get incredibly angry at it (yes!) because I'm "defending Shadow". This is some unspeakable taboo that's only done by "undiscerning" types who, as you just said yourself, supposedly have "lower standards". Can't talk about the endless years of memes reinforcing something whether it's true or not. Can't talk about how people have perceived this series all throughout the years, from the very beginning. Can't do any of that in any possible tone with any possible word usage, because it's a forbidden taboo.

    Obviously, this isn't exclusive to Sonic, or to video games. Far too many communities have far too many silly taboos that make it very hard to actually talk about anything. After years and years of putting up with this and watching communities destroy themselves over this, you get genuinely angry about all of it. People start to think you're "condescending" despite your own years of putting up with endless genuinely condescending behavior from communities who swear they "know better", and who won't dare take no for an answer, then proceed to accuse you of the same behavior.

    I've put serious research into this hobby over many years. It's been almost a decade since I've started, and I've learned lots about many games as well as many different kinds of behavior and perceptions. I'm not saying I'm right all the time every time, because I'm absolutely not. What I am saying is that very few of the people who want to whine to me about "opinions" have the slightest clue how opinionated I'm supposed to be. An uninformed majority is far more likely to be wrong than an informed minority or individual. There are far too many examples of this just in gaming; I've even thought about making this gargantuan list for some future video.
     
  10. Neo Geo MVS

    Neo Geo MVS

    Giga Power Oldbie
    19
    4
    3
    But did any of this really happen to you? It seems that you're basing your anger on things that could potentially happen rather than things that actually did. The reason why you always see this community as "bandwagoning" is because you choose to perceive it that way. If you look at individual posts rather than generalizing, you'll see that there are a wide range of opinions (both positive and negative) about any of the games, and the more extreme responses, such as demanding that developers get fired, are a small minority.

    Now this is why you are getting pushback. It's not because of your opinions, it's because you imply that you know more than anyone else, and anyone who disagrees with you is "uninformed." Hate to break it to you, but there are countless people in this community who have been researching and dissecting these games for over twice as long as you. There are people who have moderated forums for years who are far more knowledgeable about typical forum behavior. If you want to get your opinions out there, start by showing these people, along with everyone else, a little respect.
     
  11. Multi Battler

    Multi Battler

    puniboy 4 president Member
    So do dozens of others, e.g. Lylat Wars/Star Fox 64 which even has guns and stuff. See what I'm getting at?
     
  12. Despatche

    Despatche

    Member
    60
    2
    8
    StarFox was pretty exceptional for doing that. I'm not gonna comment on how StarFox does it differently from the Out Run/Shadow formula, that's not really relevant here.

    The Taito game Darius did it, using the exact Out Run formula, just expanding it by a few stages appropriate to the game. There are very specific other Taito games that use the same idea, taken from Darius, though they tend to be handled a little differently such as having requirements to reach certain stages.

    There aren't really "dozens" of these games. The mechanic is fairly unique and typically appreciated when it appears. It is generally perceived as an example of Good Game Design simply due to the sheer replay value it grants on paper. Shadow was praised for replay value above all else due to its system. Every now and then you get someone asking "whatever happened to branching paths in video games anyway?", that's how rare it is.

    Yes. It did.

    This simply isn't true. There are a lot of people within this community who have seen the problem for years and who have even agreed with me on this, whether they like how I say it or not. The majority outside of the Sonic community fears this community because of how they bandwagon things like they do. Again, this goes beyond Sonic. It is generally understood that fanbases, especially for popular works or series, are to be treated with suspicion. There are so many memes about just this thing. This is common knowledge going back decades at this point.

    So I'm getting pushback because people don't want to admit they're wrong? I don't mind admitting I'm wrong, I've already said that. But you can't really expect me to have such good faith in this community, despite countless examples to the contrary, and despite the fact that, yet again, this goes way beyond Sonic. You can't really expect me to just accept that I'm wrong, simply because people say so without actually explaining why. There are too many strange comparisons and too much assuming going on in this community for me to really believe people when they say they know what they're talking about. And yes, this obviously goes beyond Sonic.

    The people you seem to praise so highly in this community are typically the ones who want Sonic Team members put before a firing squad. That's not an exaggeration or hyperbole. That is the general opinion throughout the community. This is why I appreciate every person who doesn't do that so much. Please don't try to tell me this isn't true, I've literally been sitting here for over a decade watching this happen, year after year, game after game. I haven't even mentioned Dimps, which many seem to hate even more than Sonic Team somehow!
     
    Last edited: Dec 3, 2019
  13. SpeedStarTMQ

    SpeedStarTMQ

    Here for The Hedgehog. Member
    2,320
    6
    18
    UK
    I grew up with Sonic from an early age. The MegaDrive games, the cartoons, the toys, etc. By the year 1998 however I, my family, and everyone I knew had moved on to other consoles and other games. There wasn’t anything wrong with Sonic, it’s just that well, who had a Saturn or a Dreamcast back then? Practically no one.

    In 2003 I was gifted a GBA SP for Christmas with Sonic Advance 2, which re-ignited by love of the series. I played the game to death and eventually 100%’d it, dug out our old MegaDrive and games, started collecting again, watching the cartoons, seeking out more and more - Sonic was back for me and my brothers, but also for other people too: kids at school also caught wind of the Advance games and eventually everyone was playing them. I was asked quite a few times to help other kids complete the emerald levels and I basically became the Sonic guy locally.

    During this time I got Sonic Heroes on PS2 and loved it. It got decent reviews in the media and I stand by it being a decent game for the time, though I haven’t played it since the 2010’s rolled around. I’d probably score it an 8/10.

    I then was desperate for a GameCube which I got in 2004 along with Sonic Adventure 2 and well, I was blown away. My friends already all had GameCubes and had played this to death and moved on, but I was only just beginning. I then bought Adventure DX and 100%’d it. It was a decent game but nowhere near as stable to play as SA2B and those bloody fishing levels really were a chore to play. On reflection I’d give SA2B a 7/10 and DX maybe a 6/10, as upon replay the camera control - especially for DX - isn’t great and there’s too much going on in both games when you mainly want to play as Sonic or at least his style of play.

    I bought Sonic Advance and thought it was as as great as the originals - I played this again a few days ago and stand by this, it’s a solid Sonic game. 9/10. Sonic Advance 3 was the same and I spent tonnes of hours on it collecting all the Chao and playing co-op, though it was a bit disappointing at the time that the physics were a bit loose and the game spammed you hard with pits and enemies but by this time I was a Sonic pro so I barely cared. I’d give it 7/10.

    I remember getting both Gems Collection and Shadow around the same time on pre-order but I played Gems first. It was everything I hoped and more. The games didn’t necessarily hold up to standard and I’m sure some of them never did (Sonic R) but by this time I was a big lurker in the Sonic fandom and it was so cool to play these old games, discover their secrets and critique them with 2005 eyes.

    Then Shadow The Hedgehog hit. I was full of very mixed emotions and still am to this day. The cutscene graphics were fantastic and the music throughout the game was great and even got me in to some bands like Magna-Fi and Julien-K. The gameplay though, oh man...

    What happened to the controls? The way Shadow moved was slippery and his actions seemed delayed and slow. Half of the missions were boring collect-athons which would sometimes glitch out making them impossible to complete, and the whole thing compared to the earlier 3D games was just cumbersome. If I had one word to sum this game up, that would be it. Cumbersome.

    Aside from the controls, there were other problems too. The voice actors were often hilarious in unintended ways and everything was really over the top. I was never sure if it was being edgy or cringey in any given moment, and the graphics didn’t help either as they were crap even compared to SADX.

    The story often made little sense if you decided to be too good or too bad. Though ultimately it was up to the player, SEGA could have done more to make the choices fit the scenarios, though I appreciate that it was and still is incredibly ambitious to allow so many choices in a game.

    There was good stuff in there too, but ultimately not enough to convince me that SEGA hadn’t lost some control over what Sonic was, and I lost faith somewhat in their ability to develop games. Sonic Riders, Sonic 2006, Sonic Chronicles and Sonic & The Black Knight confirmed to me that Sonic was no longer what it was and I started to become cynical. Even though the Rush games during this time were decent they still weren’t as varied and interesting as the Advance games and I blame their success for the now over-used and uninteresting boost games. It was Shadow that was the tipping point for this franchise and though it’s largely recovered it gave us at least 5 years of mostly terrible games and damaged the brand in ways that are still being felt today.
     
  14. SoNick

    SoNick

    Oldbie
    You know, I was going to take Mr. Despatche's "woe is me I am oppressed by people who DARE to disagree with me" rant apart piece by piece, but after re-reading the topic and re-reading his nonsense in the Sonic Forces topic I think that's just what he wants. There's little value to be gained with attempting an intellectual discussion with one who wishes to see everyone who disagrees with him as bullies going against this poor victim. There is one point I need to address, though:


    Kid, you're not the big fish in the small pond here. I've put in two decades+ of research into this hobby myself, and there are a plethora of people here that know volumes more than I do.

    On to more relevant replies:
    Oh, absolutely! In this community several referred to Sonic Advance as an unofficial "Sonic 4." It was a really good game and a lot of fun! I haven't played the game in several years now, it may be time to go back to it.

    Sonic Rush was fun, but somehow Dimps had managed to grow worse at level design since the earlier Sonic Advance games. While the boost meter was a nice thing that actually gave a reason to use the tricks system introduced with Advance 2, there were a lot of blind jumps and death pits. I enjoyed the game when it was released, but I also haven't gone back to it in roughly a decade now.

    While I feel like Heroes was the tipping point of the series for me, I can definitely see an argument that it was Shadow that was the tipping point instead.
     
  15. Aerosol

    Aerosol

    FML and FU2 Moderator
    10,429
    13
    18
    Not where I want to be.
    Sonic (?): Coming summer of 2055...?
    People think you're being condescending because you are. Take a step back and re-evaluate how you're coming across.

    Or go make a bloody video.
     
  16. Multi Battler

    Multi Battler

    puniboy 4 president Member
    One last thing. Last night I was watching SXSW’s Bloodstained interview with Koji Igarashi from 2018. When asked about why Symphony of the Night changed its formula, he said that his games felt too short to justify the price (great answer!). Since then, nonlinear progression has been introduced to the series, and everyone was happy. Metroidvania starring Shadow the Hedgehog, anyone? Hm?

    BTW, in Sonic’s case, replayability was never really a problem. The longer you play the better you become. A little odd now that I think about it.
     
  17. Sid Starkiller

    Sid Starkiller

    Member
    335
    17
    18
    Virginia, USA
    Paying off student loans
    I'm intrigued at the idea. I love Metroidvanias. But how would it work? Even in 2D, I'm not sure how to make it work in the context of a Sonic game.
     
  18. MH MD

    MH MD

    Member
    31
    7
    8
    There is this fangame called sonic chrono adventure that tried this concept

    and i think Sonic Boom Ice & Fire also tried it?
     
  19. JaxTH

    JaxTH

    Pudding Deity Oldbie
    8,649
    11
    18
    Los Angeles
    Jack shit.
    Both of the 3DS Boom games were Metroidvanias.
     
  20. Blue Blood

    Blue Blood

    Member
    4,637
    1
    18
    Loosely. SC is more Metroidvania than FI, but really they're both pretty straightforward A to B platformers with optional goodies on side routes that loop back around to the main path. They don't really feel very Sonic-like either. If you want to see Sonic in Metroidvania format, the 3DS Boom games aren't really good examples of what could be.