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Sonic Frontiers Thread - PS4, PS5, Xbox, Switch, PC

Discussion in 'General Sonic Discussion' started by MykonosFan, May 27, 2021.

  1. RikohZX

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    It's funny that the most I can think of this now is "Well, at least modders won't have the 8-directional issues Forces had and now have something to play with that supports larger levels and less finicky slope movement."

    I think part of my problem is that if this was just more stage-focused then it wouldn't be so.. weird and aimless and stuff. Like, a game composed of actual stage design, and not what feels like random snippets of stage design strewn about an empty place like it's Yooka-Laylee. It's kinda what happened to Metal Gear Solid V or even Halo Infinite: you're just adding random, pace-breaking busy work and travel time in between the real content.

    I'm sure that by endgame they'll likely really hone down some more focused stuff if this really is "open zone" instead of open world, but first impressions are everything and I feel like this is a tech demo game for bringing back asset/level streaming that they gussied up into being a major release.
     
  2. Vaiz

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    While I can understand why a reductive sentiment like that is discouraged, I kind of understand where it stems from. I think a lot of the criticism in this thread wouldn't be quite so harsh if we hadn't been waiting five fucking years. I think a lot of people just expect that, in half a decade, they would have time to make a new ground texture. Honestly, I didn't even notice the reused stuff, but I get why it bothers some people.
     
  3. Frostav

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    To add another comment I made on a different site: This is gonna sound silly but this game really should have an open world like Elden Ring's: a big map that has about 8 traditional style levels interwoven seamlessly into it. Imagine if your reward for exploring was finding a huge Eggman base or a hidden underwater city you can platform through.

    There really should be something cool on the horizon to see and think "damn, I wanna go there" and then you go there and holy shit, a big ass platforming level to wind your way through! I know that according the leaks this game has traditional levels but they're apparently instanced away from everything.
     
  4. Just watched the video. This game looks weird. Probably not the right way to put it, but I'm not exactly sure what the right word would be. It's like, re-inventing the wheel at times, but worse. For example...

    Why is Sonic's default running speed so slow? Apparently, the "Fastest Thing Alive" can't even outrun an ordinary seagull when at top Boost speed. Seriously, the player activated the speed boost, you hear it rev up, but the seagull on screen is still easily keeping up. Honestly, that "Boost" speed ought to be the default running speed. If a Boost needs to be implemented, make it ungodly fast like in Generations. Yeah, you can throw caution to the wind and tear into the horizon if you want, but you better either have very good reflexes/knowledge of the area, or find a relatively safe place to do so. It would work perfect in an open world. You wander around a new area at normal running speed, solving whatever puzzles or doing whatever needs done in the area. In the process of doing this, you naturally learn the local terrain and landmarks, where threats are and what to avoid. Later on, when you're passing through this area that's now been spent of points of interest, you use what you've learned and just peel right through, using your naturally-gained knowledge of the area to know the best and safest route to blast across.

    Second, what in the world is that weird Para-Loop ability? Maybe I'm not being creative enough, but I'm not exactly seeing what it does beyond slowly trace a circle around an enemy or object before damaging it with what I'm guessing is the shockwave from Sonic's sheer speed? But, you're going so slow that it doesn't make any sense. You know what we already had that did the exact same thing? The tornado attack from Sonic Heroes. Why not bring that back? it was much quicker and snappier, was essentially the same exact thing from a "what is Sonic doing?" perspective, and would allow the exact same interactions without breaking the flow of gameplay.

    There's more that I could bring up, but those were the biggest design questions I had. Other things look more like "Here's an idea for a mechanic, let's make sure it works functionally before we start adjusting values/variables and make it look better and smoother".
     
  5. Blue Spikeball

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    Isn't that the basic idea of open world games? You're supposed to explore the world to find stuff. They're "aimless" in that you're not just supposed to go from point A to point B. Rather, you see a hill in the horizon that looks interesting so you go check it out.
     
  6. RikohZX

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    That would be fair, but that only really works in games like Breath of the Wild and Elden Ring because there's a world artfully designed around the idea of it, a "visual hierarchy" that layers the game world and its details to attract your attention to things, and in both of those games, any little nook or cranny could have new loot and gear to use.

    Games like Metal Gear Solid V and Halo Infinite instead just mark the important stuff you need and have all of the gameplay be at small bases and camps strewn about the map where all the enemies were, so besides grabbing some digitalis flowers or finding some collectible along the way, there was nothing in between all of that but travel and the occasional random enemies.

    Sonic Frontiers so far seems to be hybridizing both approaches by giving you things you're hunting to collect, whether for progression or the alleged skill system, and stringing tons of little puzzles and challenges all over the place to get to them. If I'm right about how that rolling gate echolocation thing works, you'll also have most points of interest automatically marked for you. But when you're not doing that you're just running around until the next spring/rail section or enemy encounter comes into your path, which means a game with the controls of a high-octane platformer is constantly dipping between downtime travel and uptime action.
     
  7. Hamzawesome

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    This could probably be blamed on the director Morio Kishimoto, he's usually the only common denominator in this matter.
     
  8. Lozicle

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    Yeah, like a lot of Sonic games, I'm sure there will be at least one element that gets its hooks in me. I ended up enjoying Forces cuz of the Avatar. I'm guessing either the cyberspace levels will be decent (and hopefully replayable) or the story will be actually good.
     
  9. MrMechanic

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  10. Shaddy the guy

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    People also go on and on about wishing they'd reuse Sonic's Unleashed model. It feels a little bit like we tolerate asset reuse when it's from the games we like and not the ones we don't, regardless of whether it fits or not. That's not the best way to go about criticism, I think.
     
  11. Blast Brothers

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    Fluid play control will make or break this game, and the gameplay snippet didn't really do anything to convince me on that front. Sonic's control in the boost games was optimized around linear level design, and I'm skeptical that the same basic controls will work well in a nonlinear setting. For example: can Sonic make gradual, precise turns at high speed in Frontiers? We still don't know- and seeing things like the sidestep still exist unchanged feels like a warning sign.

    Each individual linear subsection looks, at least, decent on its own. The part around 3:20 where Sonic bounces between grind rails on opposite sides of the river actually looked pretty fun. But this world, so far, seems like little more than a collection of interlaced linear platforming sections, which doesn't really play to the strengths of an open world at all.

    Moreso, I'm worried about the lack of "pizazz"- especially in a gameplay reveal trailer. Over-the-top setpieces are one of the best parts of games like Generations, but again, it seems like the open world gets in the way of that.

    I don't think this will be a bad game when it comes out- though it might lack an appreciable level of polish. But I'm getting the feeling that this game might not be for me.
     
  12. Vaiz

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    That's fair, we tend to be a very pick-and-choose-y fanbase.
     
  13. The Joebro64

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    Ok so I'm finally going to write down my thoughts.

    From what we've seen, I like it and I'm optimistic. The BotW influences are obvious, but that's not a bad thing - there's a very clear direction they're going for here and I think it has a good shot of working. Traversal is a huge part of open-world games, and Sonic... well, traversal's his thing. We've got wall running, we've got climbing, we've got the boost, we've got the stomp, we've got the roll, it looks like they're bringing a lot of his modern moveset into an open environment and I'm hoping that it'll be a lot of fun toying around with his moves to see what kind of stunts you can pull off.

    Even though this is definitely bound to be a huge paradigm shift, the DNA of the boost gameplay is very much present. Sonic's moveset seems to be largely the same as the boost gameplay, which I think lends credence the rumors that there are going to be boost-like cyberspace levels that essentially function as special stages. And I don't mind this! I like the boost gameplay a lot. It, in my opinion, is the closest Sonic Team's ever gotten to modernizing and perfecting the design philosophy and spirit of the classics in 3D, how you travel through dense, multi-layered levels and can get to new paths through memorization, quick reflexes, and using your momentum to launch off slopes. Seeing it incorporated in Frontiers has me happy.

    Is the reveal perfect? Hell no. Yes, the animations are janky, and there ain't much going on in the world. I'd chalk this up to it just being a preview, and only of one world in the game. (Remember, it's set across islands, not a singular island. This is just showing off one island.) The integration of traditional Sonic elements like springs and boost pads is a bit strange. Overall, I need to see more of the game - and maybe, y'know, actually play it - to form a full opinion, but right now, I like it. I think it looks like a cool direction for the franchise to take and it'll be different but not totally divorced from the rest of the franchise. And aside from the animations and some clip in, I think the game looks polished.

    So I'm optimistic. Eat me :V
     
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  14. Laura

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    Time for my obligatory post. Trying to be balanced and non melodramatic.

    I dont have a problem with the empty world. Its obviously going for a sombre and muted tone. Empty world fits that well. Shadow of the Colossus is empty but it works. I actually like how the puzzles give off a mysterious and otherworldly vibe. Like something out of Witness.

    I do have a problem with the aesthetic. Sonic and the rings don't look like they belong. The structures look good but I really don't like how much they copy BoTW. Irks me a lot. Just why? Seems very late and uninspired. The fact he can even climb like Link and even jumps left and right when climbing made me laugh because its so shameless.

    The gameplay looks okay. I like the fact you have to actually platform up the towers. There seems to be some platforming but I don't like how artificial it all feels. Platforms look like Gens challenge levels. They don't fit in with the world at all. Especially odd because the actual structures do which makes the generic platforms and rails stand out even more.

    Overall its hard to say. I like the fact it's more open and it's doing something different with the puzzles and sombre tone. It just doesn't look impressive in a very hotly contested 'genre'. It's going up against something like a light Shadow of the Colossus in tone and BoTW in aesthetic. Not exactly up to that standard is it.

    But it is also interesting. I didn't even buy Forces because it looked so boring. Frontiers at least had my interest and I'm curious to see more.
     
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  15. There's that Sonic jank I know and tolerate.

    Gonna keep this brief, I didn't outright hate anything I saw but I wasn't terribly impressed either. So I'm left kind of apathetic but with mild interest since, if nothing else, its a clear work in progress. I ain't buying it day 1, but I'll keep an eye on it, but I'm keeping my expectations very low.

    My biggest gripe is that while nothing shown was conceptually terrible, there's not really a sense of cohesiveness either to what Sonic is doing. Its just standard Boost gameplay stuff but in an open field. And Sonic looks horrifically stiff animation wise, there's no sense of movement and fluidity from his actions and that's the biggest sin for a character known for their movement.

    Overall....eh, its aight. Sonic's been mediocre for two decades and that seems to be where Sega are content with.
     
  16. Dark Sonic

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    So I noticed something when looking back in the trailer. The pop in seems to be a mix of intentional and unintentional. Like at one point a platform pops in but it flashes in, as if it flashed into existence from the cyberspace void. But some of it was unintentional for sure, like floor textures not loading fast enough.
     
  17. Antheraea

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    stuff like textures not loading in fast and pop-in tend to be optimization stuff, which IIRC comes in later in the dev process? or am I mistaken?
     
  18. Beamer the Meep

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    I think I'm going to reserve judgment until we get gameplay from someone other than IGN. I kinda feel as if the person playing had no clue what he was doing (which is not unusual for them) so we didn't get the best impression.
     
  19. Antheraea

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    actually that reminds me, was it just me or could you hear an occasional, like, controller click in the background? or some other input device click? it seemed like someone had a mic on that they shouldn't and maybe they were having to manually switch things offscreen with a mouse before doing certain things. They certainly seem to happen before the earlier automated segments.
     
  20. foXcollr

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    Thoughts:

    1. Unlike most people here, I guess I'm one of the few who is generally pleased with what I'm seeing. No boost attack is a big win for me, I really like the direction they went with the "speed burst" type of move and I'm glad to see Sonic can't just turn invincible and destroy everything in his path. To the folks who thought there was a boost attack in yesterday's teaser, I'm not gonna say I told you it would be this, but I did tell you it would be this.

    2. Movement looks kinda wonky, but I'm digging Sonic's turn radius and the fact that he can actually maneuver around. During that square puzzle, he seems to be able to turn on a dime while doing a light jog, and while running full speed you see him turn several times with no issue. That section where he's running through the forest looks pretty satisfying, and I'm honestly surprised with how well Sonic seems to traverse the terrain, even in areas where he runs over rocks and bumps. I don't really understand why climbing exist, like... at all. The wall run immediately had my attention, only for it to be lost a minute later as I watched Sonic slowly scale a wall. I can only imagine someone saying they had to have climbing because well.... BOTW has it... but I don't understand the point when Sonic just started running straight up the wall again. It's as if the player chose to climb for a few moments. I don't get it, but maybe there's something we're missing, like some kind of stamina meter in the UI.

    3. The game is gorgeous, I did notice some pretty rough pop-in during some sections, but it seems like at the very least, large objects are visible from quite far away. The rain was very pretty and atmospheric, and there's a lot of touches I liked like some of the visual/particle effects and the little birds that swoop in and fly alongside Sonic. I may be one of the few people in the camp that doesn't think Sonic looks too out of place here, and the more I watch the footage the more I find myself letting go of the preconception of what a Sonic game is "supposed" to look like. It's all rather personal for all of us so I can't really tell you it looks like a Sonic game, but honestly I am not bothered one bit. They sent Mario to New York, nothing bothers me anymore. Also I am highly doubtful this game runs on Switch without some compromise.

    4. Animations are still rough as all hell. That punch attack Sonic does to break the boxes looks weak and incredibly unsatisfying. The trick animations look god awful and I have no earthly idea how anyone at SEGA or Sonic Team approved of all these nearly-static animations making it into the footage. The wall-climbing animation looks rough and unnatural, especially given that Sonic is scaling a completely vertical surface and there doesn't appear to be any visual indicator that he's hanging onto something, just magically floating up the wall. Might have to watch that again though. Personally, the Forces animations don't bother me, like for example the rail grinding looks fine IMO. But there are also other things, like the animation of Sonic suddenly stopping after activating the hamster wheel is horrendous. And, if you pause the footage, there are 4 frames of some ugly blurred artifact that pop in before you see the wide shot of the landscape being scanned. The placement of some of the foliage in these 4 frames is completely different, so maybe it's possible that this is evidence that they cut the footage together? It's not just that objects are missing in the 4 blurred frames, but a lot of the bushes and some rocks are in completely different places...

    5. Some shit I saw broke the immersion a little bit. I am not a fan of Sonic locking onto an upward rail and magically accelerating upward against the laws of gravity. I am not a fan of auto-rails whatsoever. Every time Sonic began walking it also caught me off guard. Why does the animation begin when he's not even moving? He doesn't seem to start walking forward naturally at all, he just pops into this wonky looking animation and starts skating.

    6. I have no issues with the speed. Looks fine. Personally I don't really like the modern sort of gimmick of blazing through stages at lightning speed. Sonic doesn't look like he's Unleashed levels of fast here, but the movement certainly looks like it feels fast IMO. A lot of my favorite segments in the classic and adventure games aren't the insanely fast, cutscene-y segments, they're the parts where you're going moderately fast, but you feel all the more faster because it takes interaction from the player to maintain that speed. I am interested to see what you can do with the movement, and if it ends up feeling fast. As it stands, the default run speed looks ok to me, IDK.

    7. Dash panels look ugly and out of place, as do the floating boost rings. I kind of like the way they exist only in these little snippets of the world, as sort of an obstacle course element. But they do look a little out-of-place...

    8. Being able to do a homing attack on the ground is cool, I guess. The homing attack in generally looks very snappy, which I am a fan of. But I'm already seeing several homing attack chains, like those strings of little balloon things... and I honestly was hoping they were done with those. I'll obviously have to play it to see how it feels here, but homing attack chains just don't feel fun anymore, especially in the last few modern Sonic games. You can only tap A x3 over a bottomless so many times before it feels like you're just going through the motions. The snappiness does make it look a little more tolerable, I guess.

    9. I still don't know what's up with those Korok things, but wow they sound very cute. I don't know how much influence Sachiko Kawamura has over the art direction now that she is a co-producer, but they seem like the kind of creatures she would come up with.

    10. Rails don't look quite as jarring as I thought they would, but again... not really a fan of the way they work.

    11. If you look closely you'll spot a big titan-like monster in the background. Big fan of that thing, whatever it is.

    12. Fruit.


    TL;DR: Overall, I'm happy with what I'm seeing, and I'm honestly very intrigued to see more and finally figure out what these fruits do, what those little tokens with the Chao-looking icon do, what combat actually looks like, and what this exploration is ultimately leading up to. But the presentation is honestly disappointing. I don't think I'm as disappointed as others, and honestly some of these write-ups seem to be jumping to some weird conclusions (lmao @ whoever said "Sonic Forces 2", I envy you for apparently never having played Sonic Forces), but for the sheer amount of time this game has been in development and considering it's already been delayed another entire year... it's extremely disappointing to see Sonic lifting his foot into the air like a statue every time he does a trick... and to hear that same "whoosh" sound every single time... even boost games that were rushed out the door had pretty satisfying trick animations. I didn't expect to see Sonic's model skating slowly across the ground as the player begins to walk, and I expected much higher quality in general. But color me excited.

    Shoutout to Starduster, I stole your numbers format
     
    Last edited: Jun 1, 2022
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