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

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

  1. Laura

    Laura

    Brightened Eyes Member
    I liked Vandalise a lot. I wouldn't associate it with Sonic but it stands strong on its own terms.

    I'm Here is very meh.

    Also just as an aside. I don't agree with people at all that we are seeing some big turning point by getting 2000's Sonic tone music. The idea that the series has completely gone Classic in music direction is completely false.

    Unleashed went for a different orchestral approach, and Black Knight had some music following its style. But both games also had music which was reminiscent of the 2000's tone. Black Knight especially.

    The games didn't really abandon the music tone apart from the years 2010-2017. So yeah, Colors, Lost World, and Mania established a different aesthetic, with all titles evoking a classic themed music direction.

    But that's not been the recent history of the series. We've moved on. Sonic Forces indulged in the style of the 2000's era. Team Sonic Racing followed in that aesthetic, although the game did it in a way which was actually really good and o fresh.

    So honestly, Frontiers isn't breaking from the recent past but is following on from what came before. I'm not surprised at all that it has this approach to the OST. If anything we are seeing a reprise of the 2000's style of Sonic.

    Warning: Laura pours highly opinionated scorn on the 2000s Sonic era and makes many unsubstantiated assumptions on the fandom of those games

    And yeah, I'll be honest, I do feel the same way as @Josh. I love Sonic Adventure 1 and 2, but I do not like Heroes to Black Knight at all. I consider Colors to be the rebirth of Sonic. So I don't like to see Sonic going back to that identity when I think it is so obviously dreadful. When I see Sage, it just makes me think of 2000's Sonic: 'oh God, we really aren't going back to that are we?'

    It bothers me especially because I feel like a lot of Sonic fans like those 2000's games solely because of their stories. Even worse, I think they like those stories for the exact reason that they are poorly written. I truly believe these fans just want melodramatic stories with goofy stakes, Sonic to be straightforwardly heroic and not have character flaws, the cast to feature as an ensemble even though the plots don't usually justify having so many characters (especially when they are so shallow), and a tone of a bad anime. To be fair, I think these fans are good at criticising the many flaws of Pontac and Graff's stories. But I don't think they do a good job at all of arguing the merits of the 2000's Sonic stories.

    Laura is now going to stop being judgmental.

    However, I am going to give this game a chance despite my misgivings. I am a sucker for silly anime designs. I do like Sage's design. And while I've never read anything by Ian Flynn, I'll give him the chance to deliver something good. It's important to be open-minded so I'll play the game when it comes out in good faith and give it a real chance.
     
    Last edited: Sep 9, 2022
  2. Blue Blood

    Blue Blood

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    They just take character stills and stick them in for context regarding colours and size. Lost World level concept art used Classic Sonic from Generations in places.
     
  3. Crimson Neo

    Crimson Neo

    Loopin' around. Member
  4. DefinitiveDubs

    DefinitiveDubs

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    Perhaps I can put into words what exactly 2000s Sonic fans see in the older games.

    Nobody likes those stories because they are poorly written. No self-respecting Sonic fan, no matter from what era, genuinely likes it better when the writing is bad. Most of us do realize that most of the games from Heroes to Unleashed are not very well-written, if at all. You won't find a 2000s Sonic fan who unironically thinks Shadow and Sonic 06 have good storytelling. Rather, we see nuggets of greatness in the writing, which generally comes down to ambition, but also in little moments here and there where we feel that if it were refined, it'd be something great. That's what a lot of it is: ambition, and potential. Black Knight was the first and perhaps only game from the "dark ages" era that finally managed to make higher stakes and melodramatic themes work in a Sonic script without the awkward, badly localized corniness of SA2. We saw it, and we still don't want to let go of it. It's the same thing for me after seeing Super Mario Galaxy's storybook and ever so slightly darker tone, that seeing Nintendo move away from that with its sequel and continue moving away from it bothers me, even though the idea of Super Mario having a tone that isn't appropriate for toddlers sounds absurd from a distance (although admittedly, Odyssey brought it back a little bit).

    I grew up on the cartoons of the early 2000s, namely Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and Teen Titans. If there's one thing those shows taught me, it's that if you have strong enough characters, then you can put them in any scenario, no matter how goofy the stakes are or how melodramatic the setting is, and still have it work. We see the Sonic cast as being strong enough for that, despite how shallow they can seem sometimes, which is why we reject the idea that they must be stuck in simple cartoony plots like Colors or even more "balanced" stuff like SA1. Much like the different gameplay concepts Sonic Team experiments with, it's my opinion that the only reason "darker" Sonic plots always end up so shitty is because Sonic Team either aren't trying hard enough, or aren't competent enough to pull it off. The comics under Ian Flynn are proof that it's not such a lost cause after all, even if he misses the mark sometimes. And it's frustrating because I know that hearing a Sonic fan say "REAL dark storytelling has never been tried" to some people is like hearing "REAL Communism has never been tried".

    Calling for the cast to be an ensemble, again, this comes back to what other media in the early 00s was doing, namely Dragon Ball. Dragon Ball is another huge reason for why fans want these characters to keep showing up, since the parallels to Sonic are no coincidence. Dragon Ball, even up to the Buu saga, had longstanding characters like Yamcha or Tenshinhan or Kuririn who have long-since been surpassed by Goku and whoever the villain of the week was, but they still helped out if in even the smallest way, and we got to see them grow up and form strong relationships with other characters. They never feel like they're there just for the sake of giving them something to do. Wanting Sonic to be like Dragon Ball may be seen as wanting the series to be something it's not, considering Sonic characters are never going to age or develop, but Sonic has such a rich world and diverse cast that not using them feels like a waste. We want the world of Sonic to extend outside of Sonic himself, because often, other characters are far more interesting than he is. The same is true for Dragon Ball. This is why even though games like Heroes or Shadow or 06 have awful plots, I can at least respect them for wanting to do things with characters other than Sonic that are not just "Sonic, help me!"

    It's also partly a rebellion of the idea that Sonic should always be lighthearted and cartoony based solely on the character design, because we know how hypocritical it is for people to say that about Sonic yet go nuts when a series like Kirby suddenly gets dark and so up its ass with its own lore. The idea that's been beaten into Sonic fans' brains that simple = good and deep = bad is something I have never understood, because I find it shallow and dismissive of new ideas.

    So there. That's the best way I can describe why Colors having fourth-wall breaks, cringeworthy attempts at comedy, and Sonic acting like a stereotype of himself seems so regressive to myself and other fans.
     
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  5. Xiao Hayes

    Xiao Hayes

    Classic Eggman art Member
    The new song starts right and then becomes absolute cringe I don't want to hear at all. Going from supercalm to superheavy is not a cool trick as itself, you have to show a bit of talent to do that right, and having a whiny guy shrieking it's not my idea of singing. This one doesn't sound as someone going through hard times and losing control of his life, it sounds as a loser complaining.

    Err... I love that song. I agree is sort of a plastic song like most modern stuff, but that song really trapped me in singing along and not getting tired of having it time and again as

    (Sarcasm) Oh, volcano island, how unexpected. (/sarcasm)

    Hephaistos island, maybe? (I remembered the right name this time).
     
  6. RikohZX

    RikohZX

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    Didn't necessarily say it was bad, I've listened to it more times than I can count to the point of running it in New Genesis every so often for a grinding session playlist. It's just one of those songs that feels like someone composed it and then an english singer had to sing along with lyrics translated a bit too directly from Japanese.
     
  7. Vertette

    Vertette

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    So they didn't abandon it, except for all the mainline 3D games for the past decade or so... Alright then.

    I dunno, I still think SA2's plot is genuinely great even despite a few plot holes and cheesy moments. Maybe I'm the crazy one.
     
  8. I applaud the self awareness.

    As for why fans of those games love them so much? Well short answer is that they're cool :V

    More to the point; Sonic has a very diverse world and cast of characters that people wanna see more of, and not utilizing that feels like a huge of potential. What's the point of having all of this interesting lore you're not gonna do anything with it.

    As said, nobody is under any impression that this stuff is Shakespearean writing, or that it isn’t flawed. Everyone knows its not perfect; there are a lot of plot holes, poorly voice acted and very haphazard things. But these same things also have fun character moments, some legitimate development for a select few, and some pretty cool spectacle. People like what's good about these games, that's all there is to it.

    It somewhat annoys me that the fact that people genuinely enjoying these games that you guys find so off putting is bothering you guys so much. Like, you don't have to understand why people like something. I don't get Kpop but you don't see me being judgmental about it. Its so weird to me to be this pressed about people liking something that you can't comprehend. And this goes for Adventure fans too towards the Pontaff era games. Its all so annoying to deal with and just become a shit flinging contest.
     
    Last edited: Sep 9, 2022
  9. Snowbound

    Snowbound

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    The mainline games DID abandon that music tone… until Forces. There’s lot with Frontiers that feels like an attempt to expand on and improve the tone and music of Forces. Forces tried to tell a serious story and have Adventure-esque hard rock. Hopefully Frontiers will succeed where Forces failed.
     
  10. Mana

    Mana

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    Alright I wasn't going to say anything but this is really condescending and implies Adventure era fans don't know why they like those games stories when the dozens of video essays you can find on Youtube that repeat the same points will show you isn't true. The stories weren't the greatest but they kept me invested and watching how the characters grew and evolved with each game was something I loved.

    I want to start with your statement that these fans just want "melodramatic stories with goofy stakes" because that's frankly insulting not just to Sonic but fiction IN GENERAL. The most important thing to a believable story is that the characters themselves take it seriously. If I can feel like the stakes are real to them I can be invested in what's going on no matter how they look. I'm going to start with an example from something different but it's going to help bring my point together.

    One of my favorite episodes of Adventure Time deals with Finn suffering from depression and lonliness and trying to use women and physical connections to try and fill a void in his heart before he remembers that he needs to love for the sake of loving, not to fill a void, and finds the courage to move on. This is done with typical AT character designs with one of the ladies he makes out with being a princess who's a literal talking hotdog. The story took his pain and feelings of emptiness seriously so I was able to. It's insulting to say that a story must be automatically invalidated in seriousness because the designs of the characters.

    Adventure 1 doesn't have a deep story but the narrative kept me invested and still did when I played the story last year. Sonic goes on a journey across Station Square to prevent Eggman from reviving the ancient evil known as Chaos so he can build his Eggmanland. It's simple but it keeps me invested especially because the amount of exciting moments and character development we see in the story.

    We see Tails go from being Sonic's sidekick to being a hero in his own right. We see Amy learn to stand up for herself and stop expecting Sonic to save her. We see Knuckles find peace with his situation in Angel Island and more confident in his role as the Guardian of the Master Emerald. We see Gamma go from Eggman's loyal pawn to someone who's forced to kill his own brothers out of pity as they no longer have a purpose.

    Then you get a big twist at the end that Chaos, this ancient destructive evil, was actually just a creature who was hurting because of the massacre of his loved ones and wanted to avenge them, until he found out the Chao and Humans had learned to live together in harmony in the past 1000 years and he moves on.

    The story wasn't the best thing ever but it kept me motivated to go from level to level and left me feeling a deeper satisfaction than I'd have gotten just from beating the game without a story to move forward the game. And the best thing is THE STORY MATTERED.

    Adventure 2 carries over ALL the development from 1. Amy rescues Sonic from GUN at one point (as well as talking Shadow out of his genocidal desires), Tails faces Eggman himself and Sonic even trusts him to carry on his will when he thought he was done for, Knuckles no longer holds any doubt in his heart and does his duty with more confidence than ever. The things we saw develop about those characters stuck and continued to be expanded on throughout each game. And there's many more examples.

    We see Shadow go from wanting revenge on the world over Maria's death, to losing memories of his past, to regaining them and becoming a much more whole person. Still the confident badass we got to know in Adventure 2 but with none of his self doubt holding him back anymore. We see Blaze in Sonic Rush go from aloof and distant to being a much friendlier and open person in Rush Adventure. Then you get my favorite story from Sonic Battle.

    The story of Sonic Battle focuses on this robot named Emerl who has the ability to learn any move he observes. You and the Sonic cast raise him from weak robot to strong warrior, then you're forced to kill him at the end, by your own hands, because of Eggman brainwashed him and turned him evil. The final scene being Tails and Cream lamenting how senseless war and violence can be and hopefully they can make a world that's full of peace that Emerl can live in without having to be machine of destruction. Then you find out Eggman actually saved Emerl's body in Advance 3 and you get a chance to redeem him and let him live with Cream again after the true final ending, giving the audience closure.

    The stories took themselves seriously, so we were able to. That's all a story needs to do. People love Batman and it's about a man dressing up as a giant Bat and fighting crime, because it takes his struggles and the villains he faces (his most famous being a MURDEROUS CLOWN) seriously. I don't really see why it's different when it's a blue hedgehog and his friends going through similar struggles that it's an issue.
     
    Last edited: Sep 9, 2022
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  11. Snowbound

    Snowbound

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    People keep saying that frontiers is shonen/anime as heck just like the adventures era. Now, Frontiers is not out yet and aesthetically they’re absolutely right… BUT moving past the music and visuals, with Ian Flynn writing the story I think there’s going to be more SATAM influence than people realize. I’m not talking about the characters or locations from SATAM but the tone. There was a subtle tragedy hanging over SATAM
    which was explored by Flynn in the archie comics. This influence is even in the IDW series as IIRC the metal virus saga was originally meant for the archie comics. I’m not saying that Flynn is solely inspired by SATAM. Heck he could be inspired by SATAM and Shonen AND other things. I just want to point out that serious stories were explored in Sonic media prior to the Adventure games. Some folks may not consider SATAM to be legit SegaSonic but it’s the world Flynn built off of for a decade so I suspect that influences how he approaches serious topics with Sonic.
     
  12. Azookara

    Azookara

    yup Member
    I don't have any complex opinions on the story or tone so far, and probably won't until the game is near or at release.

    They've deliberately shown us as little as possible about it, and I think it'd be foolish to throw my weight behind massive arguments about why bla bla mid-00s or modern era Sonic does/doesn't work when I imagine it's gonna have the benefits and problems of both.
     
  13. Yea, there's this weird double standard where its fine for other children's franchises dramatic storylines. But when Sonic does it, its now a bad thing.

    Yes, execution and quality is important. But this implies every other children's franchise doesn't suffer from the same problems that Sonic endures. But those problems are overlooked.

    But nobody ever really talks about the merits when Sonic does it. Just the negatives.


    Like I said before, we are very annoying to speak to.
     
  14. DefinitiveDubs

    DefinitiveDubs

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    It's true. How many times has this conversation happened?

    "It's a blue hedgehog that runs fast! You can't take that seriously!"
    "Well, what about this other series about a weird and cartoony main character?"
    "Well, that's different!"
    "How?"
    "It was good!"

    They love to move the goalposts like that. They can't make up their minds whether it's because Sonic as a concept is inherently too absurd for drama, or that all the attempts to do so have failed so they associate any attempt with automatic failure.
     
  15. SuperSnoopy

    SuperSnoopy

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    I sure do love being condescendingly told the games I love objectively suck again and again and again by like the same 3 people, it always makes for riveting discussions
     
  16. VectorCNC

    VectorCNC

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    Funny that anyone would think Sonic can't have dark storylines, when it literally has an incredibly dark foundation. Demonic egg-shaped clown imprisons animals and turns them into robotic zombies to do his bidding, in an effort to turn the entire planet into an inhabitable mechanical wasteland for his sole purposes. Sonic Sat AM told this story rather well. What we need is to marry this narrative with the Toei Sonic aesthetic. Simple.
     
  17. Xiao Hayes

    Xiao Hayes

    Classic Eggman art Member
    The funny thing is the classic games also sounded really serious to me, and I complained about Robotnik going chu-chuu in Mirage Saloon because it was out of tone of what I remembered from classic Sonic games. I may or may not like later plots, but the one that stands out more to me in a bad way is Colours thanks to Sonic the monologuist. OK, probably Shadow/'06 should too, but, since they were building that tone since SA2, it blended better. I'm talking about main games, please don't use Sonic R as a counterpoint.

    Sonic looked serious the moment I arrived to Scrap Brain and saw that industrial hell in the background, even more in the 8-bit version were, while the background looked more outerworldly than contaminated, the map had those dreadful smog clouds you use the chaos emeralds to remove. And then Chemical Plant, were the background was burning in flames.

    Ninja'ed because I write english slowly, but that means my point stands.
     
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  18. Are you all even still talking about Frontiers at this point? I know it's been a thing here since the lead-up to the launch of Generations, but these megathreads getting filled with dozens of stuff that's tangentially-related to the game in question at best gets tiring fast.
     
  19. Xiao Hayes

    Xiao Hayes

    Classic Eggman art Member
    I'd agree with you if it weren't because the alternative is having a lot of on-topic pages saying the same things over and over again, which is a lot more tiring. Add to that the last pages have talked about the new music tracks, which are news about the game after all.
     
  20. RikohZX

    RikohZX

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    Sonic has been almost everything at this point short of a high-budget RPG. People can be upset that it's not what they want, but they can't say it isn't Sonic.