Sonic Forces Thread

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

  1. Josh

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    So, I ran across this post (written by one of the Overclocked devs, actually!), which postulates a reason for why Forces' story was so messy. I'll quote most of it below:

    This also means that Classic Sonic was ALWAYS going to be part of the game, even before Mania existed. He wasn't thrown in at the 11th hour in an attempt to tie the two games together for cross-promotion. That he was part of the game that early and STILL gets so little focus that he feels shoehorned in to many players is quite an indictment.

    But TL;DR, the kicker of this whole thing: "They wrote an entire backstory for a character 4 to 5 months before release and didn't bother to change anything in the main script to account for the changes made in the DLC."

    It seems they also threw in a six-month time skip at some point late in development, opening up room for some of the game's biggest plot holes. (Sonic being "tortured," Tails "losing it," etc.) Between that, and Episode Shadow completely changing who Infinite WAS, it's no wonder the story can't keep its head on straight.

    And maybe it's old news, but I also hadn't heard that Forces had new writers: Makoto Goya and Eitaro Toyoda.
     
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  2. RDNexus

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    If that's all trustworthy, then SEGA really screwed themselves HARD before even trying HARD to make things work right.
    That and how level design and gameplay got handled point to a disorganized and maybe passionless project from start.
     
  3. That's not because the games aren't trying anymore though. It's because the games shifted direction in a way that doesn't appeal to you personally as a Sonic fan.

    We've gone over this multiple times; those same games that you claim had "ambition and passion" are the same games people were calling soulless cash grabs before.

    Because of how Sega approaches feedback, the fandom assumes that by screaming loud enough, they can manipulate the franchise into what they want it to be. But Sega's approach to game development means that isn't a guaranteed success.

    The problem has, and always will be, Sega's management of the series. They've been rushing and leaving things on the cutting room floor since Sonic 2, the only difference is that they had it much easier in 1992 than they do in 2020. Their game development approaches are finally catching up with them.


    You guys could literally get Sonic Adventure 3 tomorrow with everything that you've been asking for and there would be no guarantee that it would be a success. Especially if Sonic 4 was anything to go back.

    "Ambition and passion" has never been an issue with this series, but the fundamental way they're being developed. The only difference between before and now is that fans didn't care because they liked the games anyway and they still sold well. And Sonic still arguably sells well now regardless of what fans think. The Sonic brand proceeds itself, as kids will still buy these games regardless of how we feel just like how we bought these games despite what critics or older fans were saying.
     
    Last edited: Dec 29, 2020
  4. BadBehavior

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    Yeesh, it's like they looked at the "book of darkness" flub from 06 and thought "Let's make a whole game out of that!"

    Also, the writers had to be reminded that Silver was from the future? I guess knowing nothing about the series isn't an issue exclusive to Pontac & Graff. But I do hope Goya and Toyoda do have a good Sonic story in them without the faceless suits as Sega, or whoever's fault it was, mandating Classic Sonic in there for no reason.
     
  5. Zephyr

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    This conjures images of a "Sonic the Hedgehog 5", with the shoddy Classic Sonic gameplay of Generations/Forces, and I'm glad it didn't happen.
     
  6. MH MD

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    Stopped reading right there, i am pretty sure Mania was developed/pitched to SEGA in 2015, unless i am horribly misreading something, does this man suggests that Mania was pitched in April 2016, and then SEGA be like :" ok we like your idea, let's announce it with gameplay 3 months later!" ?
     
  7. Linkabel

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    Yeah, that part doesn't make sense.

    Since Mania was pitched in 2015 then Classic Sonic appearing in the January 2016 script makes it seem like he was added to make a tie-in.

    Would like to see the source of Aaron being the reason why the Forces prequel comic was written too.

    I've seen that post before but a lot of it is just guessing.
     
  8. Beltway

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    Stealth stated on his blog that he entered a contract for a project in December 2015; meanwhile the April 2017 Famitsu interview with Iizuka talked about him being approached by Taxman and SoA with the Discovery pitch in March 2016. It not entirely clear, but assuming that report is true, the gap between Mania's greenlight and the start of Forces' story being written isn't entirely far apart.

    Whether that report is a scoop of insider truth or an advanced stage of speculation, it doesn't really change the fact that Classic Sonic altogether is an outright unnecessary component in Forces. If Classic Sonic was supposed be in Forces from the very start, the final game doesn't reflect that at all with how much of an afterthought he is across the board.

    To be frank, I imagine that's probably Sega's plan for the 30th. "Multiple games" meaning a "3D" game by Sonic Team and Sonic Team alone; and Sonic Team/Dimps reuniting for another 2D "classic" Sonic sequel.
     
  9. Hanging Waters

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    ”Ambition” is a really hard thing to quantify here. On one hand, writing a story where Eggman takes over the entire world and Sonic and friends have to launch a revolution to take it back was new for the series. Adding in a custom character with all of those character creator options seemed a bit ”ambitious” for a Sonic Team game. Taking new and old locations, as well as Classic and Modern Sonic, and trying to string them all together into a new cohesive world was pretty “ambitious” I’d say.

    Actually, considering the game didn’t get the dev time it needed (we’ve established that the “4 year dev time” or whatever rumor isn’t true) it’s almost like the game was TOO ambitious.

    But, on the other hand, Forces manages to simultaneously tackle all these new concepts and still not really do anything new whatsoever. All it’s features and tropes feel like very poorly executed versions of existing things. The whole war story thing is so incredibly ham-fisted it makes me want to stick my fist into an ACTUAL raw ham.

    I agree with Sonic5993 that I feel the main issue is just development in general, but I also sympathize with the idea that a lot of the “ambitious” or “inspired” ideas Sonic Team seems to have lately are clearly borrowed in the most obvious way. For example, Lost World was a BIG change for the series at the time, but despite its seemingly ambitious concept it was clearly taking a lot of cues from Mario Galaxy. There may have been a lot of imagination there, but the final product (at least imo) just seemed like they took a very ambitious concept and brought it to life in the most uninspired way.

    I’d argue the same doesn’t really apply to Adventure. A lot of Adventure’s tropes and gameplay concepts had been done before, but the way it expanded upon the Sonic world - going from purely 2D Sonic platforming straight into a hodgepodge of different characters and gameplay styles, all tied together in one big story with all kinds of intersecting paths - was a big undertaking.

    I feel like any Sonic game could be seen as a corporate cashgrab, so idk I don’t really have any feelings :V:Vabout that part of the discussion. I mean, they made a shitty port of Sonic 1 for GBA and tried to sell that to us at one point. I’m sure they like money at least as much as the next multi-million dollar corporation :———)
     
  10. Beltway

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    This was literally stated on record by Iizuka and later Nakamura themselves. Iizuka stated the game entered production after Lost World's production wrappedi n 2013; Nakamura clarified what those four years was spent on (first year was spent on engine/technology production [Hedgehog Engine 2], Nakamura formed a small group to handled game development for the second and third year, game entered full-scale production with the entire team happened for the fourth and final year). It's not a rumor.
     
  11. SystemsReady

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    do you remember the original trailer for Mania? It was literally just brief snippets of Green Hill and Studiopolis and nothing else. Most of the trailer was character art and gameplay from prior games.

    And mind you, we have game assets for the pitch too, still contained in the game's files, which means they could've worked on that to demonstrate to SEGA so they could get the pitch picked up to begin with.
     
  12. Hanging Waters

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    You’re right, “rumor” was probably the wrong word. What I meant is the 4-year thing had been misinterpreted.

    The original Hedgehog Engine was also developed over several years before ***actual production on Unleashed began, but even then the game only got 2 full years of hardcore development time. When people say the game (Forces) itself was in development for 4 years, that quote is often misinterpreted as 4 full years of focused game development, when in reality it was a lot of engine work in the background. AFAIK this fractured production schedule (especially for such an “ambitious” game) was not as substantial as something like Unleashed’s production schedule, no matter which way we cut it. (But the 4 years quote can, and has, been taken to make it sound like Forces got this HUGE half-decade dev window for the game’s assets)
     
    Last edited: Dec 29, 2020
  13. Myles_Zadok

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    Has it ever been said why they needed to make a new engine for Forces when the one for Generations already existed (and seems to be better)? Because doing that would have given them way more time to actually make the game itself.
     
  14. MH MD

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    the 2015 thing is not something i came up with, Iizuka talked about it, back when it was still called Sonic Discovery, i am pretty sure it's all archived here.

    There is no way they made that in 3 months, but also made the title screen animation, and settled on Mania name, and decided to announce it right away, when even Forces didn't have presentable gameplay by then, and that was developed longer
     
  15. Dark Sonic

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    They made the new engine because the former engine was becoming outdated and they could add new features and stuff and improve other processes (HE 1's started development in like 2006/2007, by the time Forces was out it was over 10 years old). Like lighting in Forces can be done on the fly, while in Unleashed/Generations had to be pre-generated. It's also worth noting Forces isn't using the full potential of the HE 2. It could look nicer than Unleashed and Generations, but art direction issues mixed with... God knows what, lead to Forces looking like Forces.
     
    Last edited: Dec 29, 2020
  16. Pengi

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    I think someone involved with Mania mentioned that Sonic Team was looking for a similar kind of project at that time? Basically that it was a right time, right place kind of thing. I could be misremembering. Can anyone place this?
     
  17. BadBehavior

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    Keep in mind Hedgehog Engine is just a graphics engine. People have looked in the game's files and found references to Lost World, so it's reusing that games gameplay engine, which could explain issues with acceleration and the lack of a Drift move.
    Now why they did that rather than use Generations gameplay engine, where Sonic actually feels good to control, is a mystery even Aristotle would call too confusing. If it's because they're for last generation platforms and they somehow don't work with the PS4 and Switch*? Does Sonic Team just want to make it harder on themselves? Was it some kind of executive mandate? And what does this mean for Sonic games on the PS5/Series X. Are they gonna throw Forces in the trash and start using the Forces Speed Battle engine?

    *and the other one
     
  18. Blue Spikeball

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    No, it's because every way I look at it, the old games seem to be designed with more passion based on the reasons I stated. I didn't say anything about preferring them or their direction, that's just a conclusion you reached.

    In fact, I've said that I prefer the boost to the Adventure formula, so I never had an issue with ST putting out boost sequels. I've also said that I don't think the old 3d games have aged that well, and consider Generations my favorite official 3d Sonic. Also, while I found Forces underwhelming, I'd put it above Sonic '06, the Storybook series, and possibly Heroes. Doesn't change the fact that when I try to look at it objectively, those games seem to be more experimental and/or ambitious, which to me is a sign of passion.
     
    Last edited: Dec 30, 2020
  19. But what are you quantifying as "ambition and passion" then? How you can quantify something like that? What metric are we supposed to judge this?
     
  20. Blue Spikeball

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    There's my criteria.