Sonic Forces Thread

Discussion in 'General Sonic Discussion' started by Blue Blood, Jul 23, 2016.

  1. MH MD

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    Not really, for instance if you only know of OOT and was presented with this image:

    [​IMG]


    Zelda would be the last thing i would think of

    hell... even majoras mask was a different style, and that was in the same engine of OoT, in fact in in my early days of the internet i wasn't even aware of Majoras Mask existence - it was smaller game and didn't sell a lot-, i was presented with lot of images from MM yet i wasn't even aware they were actually from zelda until waaaay later

    i mean....

    [​IMG]


    this alone, i would associate it with anything but not zelda :V
     
  2. Mana

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    I think its because you worded it like thats the only art style that could work for 3D Sonic.

    Most of us don't even care about the art style to a huge degree as long as the game is fun and is pleasent to look at.

    When I'm complaining about Forces or 06 the art style is the least of my concern.
     
  3. Laura

    Laura

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    I don't think Sonic's that unusual for having alternating art styles though. You talk about Zelda, but people hated Wind Waker precisely because they thought the art style didn't look like Zelda. It wasn't just that they didn't like it, they were brought up on OoT and MM and thought the darker aesthetic of those games were Zelda. Even Skyward Sword and BoTW have their own detractors for making the serie go in a cell-shaded direction.

    I mean I get your point, they all do look like Zelda games, but I think that's largely because of the re-use of enemies and characters. Ocarina of Time and Wind Waker couldn't look any different aesthetically. Both games have far starker differences in art style than say, Shadow the Hedgehog and Lost World (and I admit those games also have stark differences, I just don't think they are as acute). Lost World doesn't reach the same amount of complete reinterpretation of the franchise as Wind Waker. You have Boom, but I don't think even that is as fundamental a change.

    I agree with you that it would be great to have the colourful, cartoony, vibrant aesthetics of zones such as Studiopolis in a 3D environment. The series has had significantly different art styles in its running, I just don't think it's any more notable than other comparable series. Someone brought up DMC which I think is a good analogy, but you could also use Crash Bandicoot, Spyro, and Jak and Daxter in the platformer genre alone. Yes there are plarformer series which have a more coherent visual identity, like Little Big Planet and Donkey Kong, but it's not a dominant industry standard.
     
  4. Frostav

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    Firstly: I said that the gameplay and game design were more pressing issues.

    Secondly...I don't believe you. Imagine if Mania looked like Sonic 4, but otherwise was identical in gameplay and level design to the Mania we got. I guarantee you that most people here, while still liking Mania, would have been disappointed in this. Presentation matters. I am tired of 3D Sonic having zero cool visual identity besides "really detailed environments". That was cool in Unleashed. It stopped being cool when Forces came out and it reused a bunch of Generations zones and the new ones were bland with one cool zone (Metropolis).

    It doesn't have to be a 100% ripoff of the classics, but fuck man. You look at Green Hill in Forces and tell me that shit's acceptable. Like, a good portion of this thread (I read the whole thing in a few days) when Green Hill was revealed for Classic Sonic was bemoaning how ass it looked (nearly as much as people complained rightfully about the level design and physics), so clearly it does matter a decent amount to people here.

    At the very least, I'd like, you know, creativity. Like, you know, that one new level in Mania that was a massive printing press factory that opened up into a cherry blossom forest in winter? The one that completely blindsided everyone when we learned about it? Can we like, have that instead of "ruined city with city escape assets" or "incredibly generic gear-filled factory in a pyramid"?

    Luminous/Casino Forest was almost like they saw Press Garden in development and then tried to do that but, like, Bad and Not Good, actually. Huh.

    Like damn. All I want is for Sonic to have some creativity again. Surely we can at least agree with this. Okay fine, it doesn't HAVE to be a ripoff of the classics. Just...something.

    Sheesh, the fact that I have to clarify this much is exasperating. Here I though we were all in favor of Sonic going back to the drawing board and analyzing the classics to update them into 3D.
     
  5. Mana

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    Again it was less what you said and more how you worded it. Sonic has a very divided fandom so saying one direction it should FOR SURE go in will always have people who disagree.

    For the record I agree that Adventure is the best 3D Sonic ever looked in terms of art style but I can completely understand why someone would prefer Adventure 2 or Unleashed. Just how it is.
     
  6. Mana

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    I don't feel like looking for your exact post but you're right about Mania. It was a game for the hard core fandom that sold well because Sonic has a big hardcore fandom.

    Last year I worked at an internship for people between 16-24 (I was 23). I would bring my switch daily and this 17 year old saw me playing Mania and asked was I into Sonic. We talked about Sonic for hours then he revealed to me that he never played Mania but he owned Forces.

    He even said Mania "looked too old" and that "he probably could never play a game like that". If you look at YT comments or reddit posts by younger members a lot of them don't like Classic Sonic either and would hate that to become the main direction.

    You know, the child audience Sonic is aimed at. We're so hyperfocused on our own community we forget that we're a minority and the Sonic fandom is just that big that Mania could sell millions off of hard core fans. Doesn't mean Classic is the direction they want to go for sustainability though.
     
  7. Josh

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    I KNOW, RIGHT? There's been a noticeable influx of Sonic Twitter creeping in here lately.
     
  8. Laura

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    I wish 3D Sonic would look more like the classic games, especially Sonic 1 and 2, but I'm also happy with the detailed and more grounded style of Generations. I wouldn't call it realistic, just more grounded.

    Either way, I think it's detail that we are missing. I actually like the style of Lost World (shock horror) but it definitely could have done with more shapes and detail. Forces' style is so bland I don't think I need to comment.

    I think the lack of detail could be for budget reasons, especially when we consider how much assets they reuse. That's why I wouldn't be opposed to a simpler and stylised approach like Lost World, since they could inject personality on a tighter budget. It would be better if they didn't copy Mario though.
     
  9. Pengi

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    Mania is a very interesting case. Before the game's release, Iizuka wasn't sure how people would react to a pixel Sonic game in 2017.

    https://gamecrate.com/interview-takashi-iizuka-and-shun-nakamura-state-sonic-2017/16493

    It was specifically targeted at older fans.

    https://metro.co.uk/2017/07/04/soni...view-the-focus-is-on-old-school-fans-6753357/

    I recall Iizuka also saying something like "as long as the fans of the old games like it, we'll consider it a success" when asked about expectations for the game, but I haven't been able to find the exact quote.

    Then the game released, it was a critical and commercial success and it resonated with lapsed fans the way they wanted it to. But it also ended up being popular with young kids.

    https://www.siliconera.com/sonic-mania-plus-producer-mighty-ray-made-no-plans-sequel/

    In the end, Mania worked on multiple levels. It was a game that brought back lapsed fans of the Mega Drive games, like they wanted. It reviewed extremely well, bringing the series a degree of credibility and goodwill it hadn't had in years. It was able to be developed externally, with a shorter development cycle and smaller budget than Sonic Forces. It was affordably priced, making it ideal for impulse purchases and the kid market.

    Essentially, it's a game with strong crossover appeal to the youngest and oldest segments of the audience, like New Super Mario Bros. A good entry level game for young kids experiencing Sonic for the first time, whose parents would be at an age where they also grew up with that kind of Sonic game and can help out.

    There are also other considerations, like the revival of Ray and Mighty being so successful that they're now merchandisable characters, for the first time ever.

    Sonic Mania strengthened the brand, and without interfering with or taking resources away from the core team making the 3D games.

    It's not the either/or proposition that some of the more excitable segments of the online fandom treat it as, and never has been. Like Mario and Zelda, Sonic is big enough to sustain and alternate between both 3D and 2D entries, ensuring the widest audience. They just knocked it out the park with their latest 2D entry, so it shouldn't even be up for debate whether they should continue down that avenue. Of course they should. It's plainly obvious.

    That doesn't mean abandoning 3D titles, the older kids who want something more cutting edge, or the younger adults who grew up on GameCube/PS2/PS3.

    The 3D series needs care and attention right now. It needs the right talent, the right approach, to figure out what worked, what didn't work and why, to rethink the things they've always done and see if there's a better way.

    The 2D series is good to go. All it needs is for the Mania team to come back and make more.
     
    Last edited: Sep 15, 2020 at 2:57 AM
  10. Josh

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    Woah, thank you for sharing those interview quotes, particularly...

    This would seem to support what I was speculating on several pages ago: That the reason Forces is streamlined to the point of obliterating things fans care about (depth, replay value, and challenge) was the direct result of playtesting, of asking a wide range of audiences what THEY wanted Sonic to be. It was trying to be a game accessible to anyone, but most especially kids, so it's no wonder we got something that epitomizes "boost to win".
     
  11. What baffles me the most is that the game has a 'Hard Mode' that barely changes anything about the game; it just changes rings to function like they do in traditional Sonic games and nothing else. What was even the point? You can't run out of lives regardless of difficulty setting, and the level design is exactly the same.

    Also one thing I hate about Forces' art style is that it tries to combine the Unleashed/Colors/Generations style with the Lost World style, and it manages to not really have the advantages of either, while using them in a way that clashes with each other. Biggest offender is the City levels that use a more 'realistic' look, but then you have blocky, flat, Green Hill Lost World-like structures in the background and the weird blocky minecraft trees that just don't belong in that stage at all. Also the badniks use Lost World's style as the base, but then they go and make them all bland looking to make them more 'intimidating'. It's especially awkward with the LW chibi Egg Pawns. Also please ditch the weird worm things from Lost World, they look like something straight from a Mario game and have no place in Sonic's world, regardless of art direction.
     
  12. Mana

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    Or there are a lot more members here now who didn't grow up with classics and thus don't hold the classics as what Sonic has to be or look like.

    So Mania was well liked by older people and children who don't have an opinion on what Sonic should be? Cool?

    That doesn't change the fact that for the majority of the current fanbase Classic Sonic shouldn't be the main focus and Modern just needs better games.

    Modern Sonic is still what most fans want Sonic to be outside of the hardcore audience and small children. When I was 10 I used to call Classic Sonic "fat Sonic" and I hated his design because I was so used to the Adventure redesign. I don't think I was alone either.

    I'm not going to let my love of Mania make me ignore reality.
     
  13. Josh

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    You weren't, except when I was 10, the Adventure redesigns were revealed, and I also disliked them primarily because they weren't what I was used to!

    Yeah, you just restated what I said. :V

    But no, seriously, as I said a few pages back, a lot of the guys who grew up with the classics were just as insufferable back when THEY decided that the Only Correct Sonic was the one that existed when they were kids, and I think that's what I really mean by "Sonic Twitter." The state of it! :P

    And if I can be real for a second... it's actually pretty disheartening. One of the major reasons I had to get off Twitter (and the Sonic subreddit) was to cut myself off from the discourse. This fandom has not been in a good place this year, and in 2020, I'm not in a good place mentally to process it. I've long seen Retro as a refuge from the bullshit, but lately I've felt like even HERE'S not a good place for me. :/
     
    Last edited: Sep 15, 2020 at 7:07 AM
  14. Pengi

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    You're acting as though it's the either/or proposition that I said it isn't.

    After struggling with the Sonic brand's image and credibility for years, they released their best reviewed game in over a decade, one that exceeded their expectations, led to an unplanned physical edition and made a nice profit. It would be smart business to pursue this further with a sequel. And if that does well, another sequel.

    This wouldn't have any impact on the development of 3D Sonic games, since they'd continue to be developed by different teams.

    Now that they've shifted over to a saner schedule, rather than trying to rush out a new 3D Sonic game every year or two, it makes sense to release 2D Sonic games inbetween to help keep the brand active.

    It isn't about making 2D Sonic the focus, or making New Super Mario Bros the focus, or making Mario Party the focus. It's about continuing a successful branch of the IP that serves a distinct purpose.
     
  15. Mana

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    I never said it was either, I was just agreeing with you that even Mania didn't completely capture the fanbase, and in fact left a lot of them feeling alienated especially when Forces turned out to be so bad. I was agreeing that there's no definitive direction they can go down that will please everyone and it's not worth even trying.

    Don't know where you got all this other stuff from but my apologies for saying I understood what you meant when I clearly didn't.
     
  16. Laura

    Laura

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    They can't please everyone but Mania did please the vast majority of the fanbase, not simply because it was a 2D Classic Sonic game but because it was excellent. I find the idea that the Sonic fanbase is this completely fractured community that is impossible to completely please a bit tedious honestly. Even Generations was overwhelmignly popular upon its release and the Boost has always been a contentious issue.

    I mean sure, some people were alienated by Mania, but I think the amount of people who were on board, including platformer fans who never even play Sonic normally, vastly outweighed it. There's no doubt in my mind that Mania took Sonic to a better place.
     
  17. Beltway

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    Re: fans and demographics: I'm calling it as dumping on fans because your previous posts are and have been strictly critical of the community without actually acknowledging responses as to why things are the way they are. You just repeated Sega going after certain broad demographics as a useless endeavor while sidestepping the elephant in the room I mentioned a reply ago. The fan response would be far more consistent if the games Sega were putting out were far more consistent. Half of my previous post revolved around giving you an example in Mario that, again, you haven't bothered to address.

    The mentality of vague terms like "the audience that will maximize profit" and "a hardcore fan's money is as good as anyone else's" I'd argue as a great summary of why we get Sonic games like Forces and where the state of the series stands as a whole. Forces is a poster child of video games that are directionless messes, because it's too busy trying to tick as many demographic notes as it can instead of being focused on a quality game. Sonic games aren't produced and released in a vacuum where everything is a blank slate and you can throw anything at the wall and hope it sticks without consequences.

    Re: Boom: your specification about only mainline games was not present in your earlier posts in the thread talking about the series; and even if it was, Boom was clearly billed as something greater than your garden variety Sonic spinoff. Games like Sonic Chronicles and the Storybook games didn't get so big of a promotional push that Sega had to assuage fears that they weren't being used to outright replace the mainline series. Nor did they ever receive their own dedicated TV show, merchandise, advertising materials, and character designs/continuity that were emphasized as separate from the main franchise. The point remains that Boom stands as a prominent example of Sega clearly banking on selling Sonic to customers substantially removed from the existing community, with less than stellar results. That's a fact, no matter how you want to look at it.

    Re: fans and advice: Sega has made a point of outright asking for fan feedback for certain games, even to the point of promoting an entire game around fan feedback and hosting an on-site session at the former SOA HQ for people to come and air their concerns. Only to later demonstrate they are incapable of meaningfully understanding and incorporating the advice given when they don't just ignore it outright. Sega has also made multiple appeals towards making amends on different occasions, whether it's recognizing poorly-received games and pulling them out of circulation, apologizing for betraying fans' trust, and admitting they've struggled with the series' 3D gameplay over the series' lifetime.

    So honestly, you tell me on that front about whether Sega knows what they're doing in regards to franchise management. I believe the track record with the decisions Sega has taken with Sonic games, and their attempts to course-correct on those decisions (or lack thereof), speaks for themselves.
     
    Last edited: Sep 15, 2020 at 7:08 PM
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  18. Mana

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    So I just realized I was replying to Laughing_Sun and not you in the first place lol.