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

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

  1. From what I've read, they actually utilize the full 1-10 scale. For comparison, they gave God of War Ragnarok a 5/10.

    So their opinions do actually line up more with the 7/10's we see.
     
  2. Dark Sonic

    Dark Sonic

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    I guess it depends on how you view the scale. I’m used the the US Education system scale where anything below a 60 is an F and thus a 3 or a 1.5 is like a super F. So to me a 5/10 is an F, a somewhat high F but an F.
     
  3. Its kinda strange but I guess it's probably because they just decided it wasn't worth the investment to make new levels. 3D Sonic levels (regardless of if they're 2D or 3D perspective) are already very resource intensive to make, boost Sonic especially. Unleashed had DLC levels but they're mostly just reusing assests to make very simple layouts with millions of hazards or reusing pre-existing layouts and dumping millions of hazards on them, so could've likely been the hypothetical route Gens couldve gone for DLC, but challenges in the base game already kinda do that...

    Now that I'm thinking about it, do we have any numbers on how Unleashed dlc performed? Could be related for why they didn't bother doing much for Gens
     
  4. Dark Sonic

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    I don’t remember 100% but I remember it started taking longer and longer to get the Unleashed DLC out they definitely started losing motivation after a while so likely the DLC did poorly.

    But Unleashed also performed horribly at launch, Frontiers not as much.
     
  5. Deep Dive Devin

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    The Unleashed DLC is also, just, absolutely miserable. I cannot stand playing almost any level in those packs.
     
  6. The Joebro64

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    Lost World and Mania were the only Sonic games whose DLC was worth a damn.

    Looks like Frontiers will be joining them though.
     
  7. Starduster

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    I think this is hugely important to contextualise this. I'd say, with the advent of web based press and sponsored content as printed gaming press as died out (or perhaps as the medium has matured and/or become more curated), "absolute guttertrash" is generally not something that gets much press these days unless it does something sensational or comes from a sufficiently well known studio. I wouldn't say shovelware is completely behind us, but as games have become more demanding of our time and generally better crafted, I think there's little incentive for outlets to waste resources covering bad games that few are really interested in.

    As a result of this, the vast majority of games are going to be in that 7-10 range, with the bottom half of the scale being all but redundant. Rightly or wrongly, I think Edge's use of the scale is a reaction to this. I personally disagree with the idea that Frontiers is a 3/10 even with this in mind (I'd say it's a 5 at worst), but I understand the rationale behind it and I do think it's important to consider things like this when talking about review scores.
     
  8. Dark Sonic

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    I always found Lost Worlds DLC to be rather meh, it’s mostly interesting due to shock value seeing Sonic kicking Shy Guys and wearing Link’s clothes, the NIGHTs level was just trash.
     
  9. Starduster

    Starduster

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  10. Dark Sonic

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  11. RikohZX

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    I still think all those platforms and stuff were just sorta panned out from last December to June in a massive hurry, hence the severe lack of variety in them.

    Modern Sonic Team just straight up doesn't design course challenges naturally anymore, everything is turning into floating platforms and basic level editor sandboxing. And I have to wonder how much of that is deadlines and how much of that is from trimming out proper asset streaming back in Lost World.
     
  12. Laura

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    I think Sonic Team put those challenges in because they thought they were well designed. I've talked about this before but Nakamura, Ootsu and Sonic Team clearly think this automated and shallow level design is good game design and is what they want to do.

    I think it is possible the sequel will make the automated challenges more aesthetically pleasing. I do think the pop in may be intentional to make the world look cleaner. But at the very least I think they very well may make the automated sections nicer to look at.

    But I see no reason to think Sonic Team will change from this fundamental design decision. If they make a Frontiers 2, it will be another game based upon automated sections make up of boosters, springs, rails, and homing attack chains. It is just what this team does. The automated sections in this game were clearly painstakingly made. I was overwhelmed at times by how much work must have gone into it. It isn't a rushiob. I think a lot of people don't accept that Sonic Team sits down and may spend much of game development designing automated sections
     
  13. Blue Blood

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    Right? I'm tired of people saying that so many of Sonic Team's conscious design choices are down to time constraints. Both the open zones smh cyberspace are designed in exactly the same way as every 3D game from Colours onwards, including even Classic Sonic in Gens and Forces. A level that looks nice is modelled out, and then that level is made playable by throwing a load of objects and splines into it. It's why every ramp is preceeded by some form of automation (often invisible) and why "platforming" sections are largely comprised of homing attacks.

    Frontiers might have cut content because of deadlines, but it's not a rushed and incomplete game. It's quite clearly what Sonic Team set out to create. The design choices are all conscious.
     
    Last edited: Dec 3, 2022
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  14. Linkabel

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    You can even argue that a lot of the design philosophies that plague games from Colours onwards have been there in one way or another since Sonic Adventure, and have escalated since then.

    So yeah, I really agree that all the design choices are there because that's what they think it's good and not because of time constraints/budgets.
     
  15. Mana

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    They have always said an maintained that boost levels take a long time and are expensive to produce so they probably didn't have the time or resources to do DLC.

    Part of the goal of Lost World was to make a new gameplay style that was more sustainable and that didn't take as many resources to produce.

    Frontiers being Lost World's closest child shows that it finally worked out in the end but everything we've seen from Sonic Team since 2011 has been consistent with them saying this.

    Boost levels on Gens levels of complexity just is too much for them to pull off especially if people want an experience that takes longer than 2 and a half hours to finish.
     
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  16. @Laura I think it comes down to..

    1) Most Sonic fans just do not understand how game development works, and making a lot of assumptions based on that.

    2) Refusal to accept that this is the current style that Sonic Team wish to go with.

    But after that Interview with Kishimoto from Forces where he was talking proudly about how automated everything was, its impossible to see it as anything but intentional. This team just does not want to design more intricate level design and are just content with the same automated and linear level design they've had since Boost was invented.

    You can argue that this has been the direction of the series since Sonic Adventure 2's speed stages and this is the logical conclusion of that, but it doesn't make it any less annoying if you're more of a fan of the more expansive level design from the old 2D games. Like Modern Sonic team can't even be bothered to make said automated level design fit in aesthetically with the rest of the world, when games like Mario Odyssey, Bowser's Fury, and Kirby and the Forgotten Land can do that easily.

    It's just one of the many frustrating things about Modern Sonic games that holds them back from reaching their full potential, and it's especially annoying when nobody else really seems to care given the praise Frontiers is getting.


    Now I know how certain Pokemon fans feel Scarlet and Violet get defended like their life depended on it despite all of the issues in those games....
     
  17. Starduster

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    Given how much seems to be going into addressing fan feedback these days (consolidation of canon to scrap divisive elements and bring fan favourite ideas back into relevancy, giving Sonic 3 a remaster for modern hardware, course correcting characters and now making them playable again), I feel at least a faint optimism that maybe automation will be stripped back in the future if we continue to be persistent in our criticism of it.

    I did (and perhaps still do) believe that it was a product of rushed development with Forces, but I’m more inclined to take it as a design choice with Frontiers. At any rate, it needs to stop. I feel like there’s so much that can be done with this base if Sonic Team can finally break these old habits.
     
  18. synchronizer

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    They could invest in some procedural generation tech to make it easier to lay-out and iterate on these sections in a way that blends into the main level environment automatically.
     
  19. Cyberspace does have significantly less invisible walls compared to Forces or even Generations, not sure if this was part of some conscious decision but it’s easy to skip past a lot of automated sections and setpieces like loops which makes it pretty fun to speedrun especially when you use magnet dashes.
     
  20. foXcollr

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    Count me in as part of Team Optimism, I think Cyberspace was generally pretty damn fun compared to a lot of the shallow level design we've been getting in the past decade. It's kind of a "greatest hits" compilation, but I feel like they picked some good highlights to draw from. I definitely wish the stages had more variety, had less gimmicks/objects, and relied less on 2D... but I also don't want them to simply "go back to SA1/SA2". If there's one thing I really like about Frontiers, it's that the freedom to take on platforming segments at your own leisure and sequence break to your heart's content made these segments more fun to go through.


    I'm hopeful when they say they are listening to feedback, that includes listening to the many reviewers and fans who have said they wish the platforming was incorporated more into the environment. Less floating Default Rails doesn't necessarily mean less automation, but if they are listening to that criticism I think it should lead them in the right direction. The community makes it a little difficult to tell what people even want sometimes (cut to SEGA devs scratching their heads trying to figure out why a literal property of a moving object has become a hot talking point among fans), but thanks to the popularity of the game I am hopeful that they have a lot more data to pull from. I'm not making excuses for SEGA here or saying the games not selling that well is an excuse to not listen to feedback, but you have to admit it's much easier for them to iterate on this formula when the general public is actually playing it and giving their thoughts, not just diehard Sonic fans.
     
    Last edited: Dec 2, 2022