Discussion in 'General Sonic Discussion' started by TimmiT, May 17, 2013.
I can't facepalm enough.
This is the first time I've played Lost World. I could tell it was bad based on footage and review, but having a hands on experience I was able to examine it in detail. It's bad in many ways I wasn't yet aware of.
Others have already noted the gameplay is awkward. Normally I can analyze a game and see exactly why it's behaving unsatisfactorily, but Lost World is such a tangled mess of subtle problems I'm actually having a hard time breaking it down.
It's as if they were trying to refine Sonic's control, but instead it's more like an overly polished turd. The way the game plays and feels echoes weeks of developers scratching their heads and fiddling with variables in confusion, adding on unnecessary padding trying to haphazardly correct the issues they don't understand only serving to inflate the mess and patch the holes with flimsy proverbial tape.
Sonic is constantly challenged by indecisive physical rules. He has trouble settling on speeds and directions as he flounders awkwardly through the air, or he'll suddenly hit the opposite extreme and be anchored on a set path with a fixed speed. This happens with his raw controls alone, and when influenced by events in the level which only makes matters worse. Any time Sonic hits a spring, booster, random gimmick, or even some arbitrary strip of land in the level, the player can kiss control goodbye as the game practically grabs the controller away and goes "no let me do this" and for a set period automatically controls Sonic through a section of the course, even in places where it's not necessary whatsoever. This happens so frequently it makes up a significant percentage of the gameplay volume.
I've said it before how the run button is arguably the worst design choice in the entire Sonic series, but I did not realize just how horrid it is in practice.
It should go without saying, yet sadly it needs to be said, that the run button is opposite to everything Sonic. Giving Sonic binary speed is a massive betrayal of the most basic design principles of Sonic gameplay. It's such a fundamental aspect that this difference practically neutralizes it being a Sonic game entirely (yet the game manages to destroy the other most fundamental component which I'll get to after this). The game gives Sonic very rigid speeds, which lends a lot to the awkward mechanics. Acceleration is only ever a fleeting factor as Sonic immediately ramps from zero to walk, and his movement is capped to a sluggish pace. Holding the run button pops him up to a much quicker pace which also has a very fixed speed. The only reason to ever switch between these two speeds is to manage Sonic's forward speed when jumping. The way the game works is by tightly sustaining Sonic's speed upon jumping giving the player little control, so the walk pace is for shorter distance jumps and the run pace is for larger distance jumps. None of this bullshit would be necessary if the game had proper momentum, acceleration, and control. It's not like the original Sonic games ever had any issues with this. In fact they were very graceful and controllable while this is an awkward disgrace. Given the limited and unnecessary purpose of these two movement speeds, since they affect control for the entire game, it makes controlling Sonic very annoying and sloppy in general. He's almost always forced into one of the two primary speeds, and any neglect of the run button means an instant loss of control, which is easy to do as it's such an unnatural hamfisted control scheme.
And then... there's this.
Oh is that right?
How do people defend this garbage? This isn't Sonic. It's just pretending to be Sonic. The environments are there but they're useless, like cardboard props. The gameplay is a confused stew of sloppy controls and ill conceived dead end mechanics patched together in a disjointed fashion. In lieu of real Sonic mechanics which are thoroughly absent, a junk pile of filler gimmicks serves as substitution. They gutted the car's engine and crammed a bunch of toys and pointless pipes in its place. Sonic Team of today has absolutely no idea what they're doing or how Sonic works even on the most basic level and every sorry attempt they make reinforces this.
I'm tired of people grading this and other modern Sonic games against every game that exists. It's not an appropriate way to assess a game that's part of a series. No one would accept a drastic drop in quality and bizarre unfitting change in a new main series Mario game, even if that game was good on the spectrum of all games to ever exist. Yes, compared to every game ever, Sonic Lost World is a good game, because there's countless really bad games in existence. But it bears the title of Sonic and thus measures against its kin. This may be an okay or good game by itself, but it's a very bad Sonic game. It's a generic platformer that merely clings to Sonic's image. If I want to play a generic platformer, I have plenty of options. I go to a Sonic title with the expectation of a Sonic experience and this fails miserably at delivering it.
Amazing post. That's a really great analysis of the game and far more advanced, higher level and intelligent than any of the reviews I've read.
Sonic Retro really is the nexus of Sonic.
Because they're not properly filtering it as I mentioned previously.
I don't think the game is trying to play like the classics though, if anything it's trying to play like Mario Galaxy (not that it should since it's, well, Sonic, but that's besides the point). I know the game has flaws, but I don't think it's necessarily fair to compare it to classic physics as that's not what it's aiming for, it's aiming for what it is. It's not like Sonic 4 where the lack of momentum was a huge problem as it was trying to play like the classics and failed. This is just trying to do its own thing.
Plus all Sonic has is aesthetic image at this point. The environments and designs have been kind of nailed down at this point, but the gameplay is in as much flux as ever.
I'm disappointed. I read reviews of this game before and I knew this game wasn't that good, but I wasn't expecting something like this. The game doesn't feel like Sonic at all. And the controls are really hard to learn. Seriously, I keep dying because either I spam spindash to go fast, or forgot to hold run button.
But I still enjoyed the game. I just need to get used to the game.
Sure it wasn't really trying to play like the classics, but it really leaves one to wonder why the games aren't using "building, transferring and retaining speed" thing as the core for it's design in the first place whenever something like that shouldn't really be too much to ask for. Granted it doesn't completely make or break the game, but it is awfully disappointing. It's like if Mario just one day had a main game where you weren't able to do kooky physics stuff with objects and enemies. That's at least three shades of lame.
I really hope the latest PR from all sides of Sega isn't a bunch of bull and that they're actually gonna do something about this. Continuing to have Sonic games that control like this is kind of embarrassing..
Indeed, a huge wall of text that's filled with complaints about a game not being like the rest of the games in the franchise, baseless assumptions about how the game was developed, and a rant about other people's opinions being shit truly is a shining example of the Sonic community's immense prowess.
Like y'all never read what I wrote in the first place.
I'm just going to JOURNALISM a bit more now. I said it was half-baked two years ago, it's still half-baked now.
Hey guys, how's it goin-
Jesus fucking christ, is this fucking Bonneville in here or what? This shit's saliferous as fuck. I mean, yeah sure, Lost World wasn't great, but isn't this old news? I mean, yeah they made a PC port recently, but it's not like the game being like this is news. Is there any point to being this salty about it after all this time?
Many times I've read the argument "it's just different".
No, it's worse.
It's measurably worse.
And even if it were trying to be different, the game is physically constructed like a Sonic game, but the mechanics are constantly at odds with it, and in total don't stack up to the level of clean and fluidity the classics had. Additionally, if it's "trying to be its own thing", it should be a spinoff, not a main series game.
If aesthetic image is all Sonic has at this point, then as a game series it's dead. I could argue the aesthetics as well because this doesn't resonate with Sonic's aesthetic. Everything has this cheap and tacky look and feel to it, it's nauseating.
Pictures speak more than words.
Complaining that a game has a significant drop in quality compared to other games in the franchise*
Making assumptions about how a game was developed based on observations of how the game functions*
Complaining about uninformed opinions or ones that miss the point*
Uh.... why is my name in this? :v:
Please don't make an actual kaboom happen though.
I don't want to get into an argument here, because it's not important enough to bother. I'm just going to leave it at this. Did I say it was better than the classics? No. Does it have flaws? Absolutely. Does that mean I'm not allowed to enjoy a game that doesn't play like Sonic 1 - 3K even if it has Sonic in it? No it doesn't, I can play and enjoy what I want. Not your cup of tea? Well no one is asking you to drink it now are they?
I think Mr Lange has a bit of a point in terms of criticizing the game for lack of momentum though. Even if we're not comparing it to the Genesis games for obvious reasons, it seems really odd that there's a very evident lack of momentum in Lost World, when one of (if not the) biggest selling points of the game are its gameplay mechanics based on parkour...you know, the very practice that's largely based on refined movement. I challenge if the game did have some decent momentum for players to make use of, a lot of the complaints about the gameplay prohibiting the player from maintaining any sort of flow or its controls feeling rigid --at least, without knowing the controls like the back of your hand, anyway-- would largely be addressed.
Though like I said before, the game in general just doesn't really seem to have any cohesive focus. It tries to juggle parkour mechanics, Mario Galaxy-inspired gravity mechanics, motion-control Wisps, a slew of retooled pre-existing gameplay mechanics, and a slew of gimmick-defining stages all at once, and in the long run doesn't handle any of them well.
Also off-topic, but...gotta love that gif where Sonic goes straight down after Lange spindashes and lets go. Straight out of Sonic 4 lol. But it's besides the point.
Wider audience now means more eyes are on the title. A lot of people when the Wii U version launched flat out said it was an obtuse Sonic game that had some decent ideas (parkour) but failed in execution (almost everything else.) Nothing really stood out, but nothing was offensively awful ala Sonic 2006 (barring the snowball stage.) It's the definition of a half-baked title where the things it does right show promise if expanded upon, but everything else is just so... "meh."
I'll lay it down thick for you guys, and I look forward to getting a scolding for this from certain affiliates: this game was designed SPECIFICALLY to appeal to Mario audiences. In that regard, Lange is right. It's not a traditional Sonic game so much as Sonic Team saying, "Make it more like this!" while smothering their designers faces in Mario Galaxy and Galaxy 2. If designers had questions, they were literally told to think how Mario's makers would do it. This was supposed to be the main jewel of the Sonic on Nintendo exclusivity agreement Sega and Nintendo signed.
And it sold worse than the 3DS version, which is figuratively and literally a pile of garbage on a cartridge. No fault of its own honestly since the Wii U was a pile of junk and had nothing exciting to make people buy a system.
I could go on if anyone cares enough.
Yeah, the parkour stuff never really gelled with me in any sort of form. I consider Generations to be a much closer representation of Sonic's classic physics, with the handheld version doing the better job of the two. Lost World... not so much.
I never said you're not allowed to enjoy it...? My case is about how Sonic originally established a specific and complex form of gameplay, and modern Sonic games have lost it and replaced it with shallower alternatives showing both a loss in quality and ineptitude on Sonic Team's part, as well as how I personally can't stand the changes.
I don't understand what you're getting at.
Are you trying to say my membership status is on the rocks because you disagreed with my Lost World analysis? Or was it something I said?
Sonic 4 wasn't trying to play like the classics.
Sonic 4 was literally a title called Sonic Mobile designed originally JUST for Android and iOS, but then someone got cocky and decided to give it the Sonic 4 name without thinking of the sociopolitical ramifications of doing so and the project not living up to the standard of being a numbered entry.
Enter that mess of stupidity we had in 2010.
Separate names with a comma.