Sonic Mania (Switch, PS4, Xbox One, PC)

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

  1. Beltway

    Beltway

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    A game getting heavy praise and reception doesn't translate to a good public image?...

    As for good sales, I'm not exactly placing bets that it will do gangbusters since its a digital retraux game, but....it's based off the Genesis titles? Which were not only mainstream hits at the time and are drowning in ports to gaming/non-gamimg platforms today, but are collectively some of Sega's most successful games, period? It's not exactly a risky title, especially considering this is a low-budget digital game in the first place.

    Moreover, I actually think the focus group bit is actually a backfire of an argument. Mania was made without trying to please focus groups and its receiving a near-rapturous response, from both the press and fans alike. Forces he says was made to please focus groups and the response to that game has been polarizing across the board--which I think says a lot about how Sonic Team is handling Forces and how that game is likely going to turn out.

    To say nothing of the fact of how focus-testing went so well for the last major Sonic game... "We decided to make a Sonic game to appeal to non Sonic fans." "People/retailers are bored of Classic – Dreamcast era Sonic." “In focus tests, we heard all the time, people were sick of speed, Sonic was too fast, they wanted to slow down.”
     
  2. /dev/sr0

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    I've said before that I wanted Mania to outsell Forces, but I'm not too sure about that now.

    Sonic Team seems to be afraid of leaving out Classic Sonic now, but tbh Generations-style "Classic" Sonic is a terrible misrepresentation of what made Sonic great. The physics are all wrong and it's just not fun to roll around and pick up speed. There's too many on-rails sections, and for some reason everything is fucking huge. Sure the upper and lower paths are still there to explore, but what else (other than the dumb-ass overpowered spindash) makes it "Sonic" and not just a generic platformer formula? Even the fucking ramps feel wrong.

    I think if Mania outsells Forces, then Sonic Team will continue trying (and failing) to add "Classic" Sonic into their games, rather than taking what works, (see: "Modern" Sonic gameplay) refining it, and making a game that's just about that.
     
  3. I can't wait for the day Iizuka steps down and someone with the common sense to realize that having a million boost pads and scripted sequences plastered all over the place actually makes gameplay worse replaces him.
     
  4. Well, if things go well and we can potentially get a Sonic Mania 2, maybe it could go with a graphical style like Sonic Advance? It's still all 2D, can still have all of the great level design and everything, but removes Classic Sonic from the equation. It would prove that the gameplay is what's selling it and not "Classic Sonic = success".
     
  5. Stimil Rc.

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    I know lot of you are hopeful for a permanent revival of Genesis era Sonic, but is anyone else worried about the series stagnating and becoming unpopular again? Much like many other retro revivals, a huge part of what makes Mania appealing is that we haven't gotten anything like this in decades besides the very different Advance and Sonic 4 games. How often would they be able to release a game like this before general audiences get sick of it? How much could be altered before it stops feeling like classic Sonic?
     
  6. Zephyr

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    That's not really true, though. Remember, we're getting Sonic Mania because he's down for it. Sonic Mania is, in part, him doing this shit that you're saying he's not doing. Utilizing our suggestions. Us being pandered to here with this game means that his pet projects aren't at our expense. If they were, then we wouldn't simultaneously be getting what we want.

    I'm fine with him not utilizing our suggestions for his pet projects, because then they would still be subject to the constraints that come with his pet projects. This being a side thing that another team is for the most part handling means that it's less likely to be tainted by as much of his own creative influence.

    I mean, it's not out yet. I'm uncertain as well, despite any and all reasons to be optimistic.
     
  7. Its very possible but I think the hope in something like Mania is simply to remind everyone, including SEGA, of what Sonic's original gameplay identity was. So you take that and move forward to build rather than continue to throw ideas at the wall hoping something sticks. SEGA should seriously bring in people who deeply understands and can reduce the most important elements of that iconic gameplay and create a foundation for it in 3D, even if the talent they need is outside of the company.

    If Mania does better than Forces there's a reasonable chance that could happen. If Forces does better, I think Mania will continue to exist but just as its own separate thing while the 3D games continue to flounder.
     
  8. Beltway

    Beltway

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    I dunno, Nintendo seems to have managed it pretty well with Mario games so far?

    The NSMB series are criticized as being stale, but the games still review great, and they're still selling more than Sonic could ever hope to. (Moreover, most of the complaints regarding NSMB are aimed more towards the presentation --artstyle and music-- rather than the gameplay. A new 2D Mario that took a new bold direction in visuals and sound, a la Galaxy or Odyssey, would easily quell that perception.)

    How often Nintendo makes and releases NSMB games also isn't a problem for them because they only make one, two 2D Mario games each generation. Ever since the first NSMB came out ten years ago, there's only been three sequels, with one NSMB game per platform.

    As the fear of Sonic games not evolving...an argument can be made that Sonic Mania and Sonic 4 are the only exceptions to the rule--and even then, a major fault with Sonic 4 was that the game itself was "too evolved"? That and I'd say there's a lot of potential new things that could be done with the Genesis gameplay that Sega / Sonic Team haven't even tried doing.

    Nah. I'd personally like to continue seeing the Genesis artstyle continue being used in new games. The post-Adventure designs have had 23 years' worth of 2D games (sprite or otherwise) to be used, including a game that was marketed as a Genesis Sonic sequel.

    That and considering how Forces is shaping up so far, I think that game will prove the opposite of your argument IMO: tossing Classic Sonic into your game won't equate to success.
     
  9. Oh, I know he greenlit the project, and am sure glad he did. He does understand that Mania is what the fanbase really wants. However, what I was really referring to there was how he doesn't cater to the fans within the main project, all the while stating that he wants Forces to appeal to casuals and fans alike. The way I see it, his willingness to hear out the fans who would love to enjoy all Sonic games for only the one game, and not within the mainline series is sending a pretty messed up message.
     
  10. Sean Evans

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    Lol, well I never said he was right. It's just that he doesn't see what's special about Mania since it's intentionally meant to cater to one side of the fanbase. I don't think he has a seething hatred for the fans like everyone else thinks, he's just out of touch.
     
  11. Mr Lange

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    This right here, bothers me a lot. It's like they cannot identify classic Sonic as anything other than "2D" and "pixels". They do not understand its core qualities, style, essence, gameplay, or anything about it. As if classic Sonic and 2D are exclusive attributes and that's all there is to them. As if fans of classic Sonic only care about having Sonic in pixels and 2D space. As if the Genesis games were the only part of Sonic's identity and their only features were being 2D and pixel graphics. It is not even referred to as "targeting fans of the classics" or "physics/momentum based gameplay", but first and only "2D" and "pixels". These statements speak volumes about their perception and understanding of Sonic and its fans.
     
  12. TheKazeblade

    TheKazeblade

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    It's precisely this kind of cursory understanding on the part of Iizuka of what made the classic titles good that led to the dumpster fire that was Sonic 4. The fact that we're getting Mania at all is seeming like more and more of a miracle every time he opens his mouth.

    What kills me the most is that when Mania is wildly successful and gets critical and fan praise, he'll probably kick Taxman, Stealth and the rest of the Mania team to the curb so he and Sonic team can soak up the glory for future Classic revivals all for themselves. Of which of course there will be little to be had, because again, Sonic Team has proven themselves incompetent when it comes to understanding the essential core elements of what made Sonic an effective franchise.

    I think Iizuka really needs to start delegating the decision making of the series more and more, because it's becoming more and more apparent he's not only out of touch, but unable or unwilling to take steps to get informed.
     
  13. Glaber

    Glaber

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    Oh he can try, but it's already too late. If you saw the reaction to when Taxman's Logo appeared in the first trailer, it's clear that this is a Taxman and Friends game. any attempt by anyone in SEGA to try to take the credit for themselves will be seen as trying to steal the credit.
     
  14. rebelcheese

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    There's a sign of something changing in both Iizuka's and SEGA's mindset though with Mania's mere existence. The pattern is usually a Dimps-developed game to accompany the mainline Sonic game. That is not happening this year. The Dimps game has been replaced by the Christian/Headcannon/Pagoda game. I think Dimps' surprise, and quiet, departure from the Sonic franchise serves as both a warning and a lesson for Sonic Team here: shape up or the Westerners could very well take your place.

    Sonic's 30th anniversary is in 2021, and considering how long it took for Forces to get going, I would not be surprised if the next main Sonic game is indeed a reboot depicting the Genesis-era levels in 3D. Who, or what, will make this game, I don't know, but I feel like Forces in a lot of ways is closing the book on an era of Sonic that's been going at least since Sonic Colors in 2010, if not all the way back to Sonic Adventure in 1999.
     
  15. To expand on this, a large part of what makes many Mario games of the last ~10 years "stale" is how utterly formulaic they are. Bowser kidnaps someone (usually Peach). Mario plays through grass, desert, ice, tropical, jungle, mountain, cloud and lava themed worlds. Always those eight world tropes, with probably a dozen Koopaling boss fights. Eventually you beat Bowser. The power-ups and level design could practically be procedurally generated at this point.

    Nintendo could shake all this up without changing the core gameplay, and I think classic Sonic already has the advantage of more varied zones/plot as precedent. S3K is the perfect example of how to revolutionise a game format without throwing anything away, and I'm sure the Mania team have their own ideas to enhance the format further. I adore everything about Mania, so as long as they keep thinking up new level tropes, gimmicks and bosses and can wrap them in a simple plot with a variety of game modes and characters, I think a new release every 2-3 years would be viable for at least another four games. We just need the feeling of passion and creativity to be preserved.
     
  16. Zephyr

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    Yeah, I getcha. The lack of pandering to us within the main project used to bother me. But now that I see Mania and Forces, I'm thankful that we're relegated to an entirely separate project, rather than get one he can/would significantly taint.
     
  17. LowSeasCaroz

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    Iizuka's perspective is not that of a programmer, and at this point he hasn't even been a game designer in ten years (the last game that credited him as game designer was the Wii NiGHTS). After that, only producer roles. And the last Sonic game that he designed was even before that (Shadow in 2005).

    His perception of "Retro"-style games, which didn't really become relevant until about 2011, doesn't surprise me. It's the same perspective a lot of game journalists and younger gamers still have, thinking of "Pixelated" games as "outdated" and "obsolete". Sorry, but that's the way it is in mainstream gaming.
     
  18. Flygon

    Flygon

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    Irony is, most younger people I've seen go nuts over 'pixels', because it's... exciting, I guess?

    I mean, I like a good mosiac as much as the next guy, but the fascination seems completely bizarre.

    Says the guy working on a script for a weak machine to save on art budget and to hide inexperience. :v:
     
  19. Dark Sonic

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    I mean they could have gone for a non pixelated 2D style, and given Pagodawest's previous work with Sonic 2 HD I would have actually enjoyed if they went that route.
     
  20. Stimil Rc.

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    On a personal level, the fact that, aside from Sonic getting the Drop Dash (at the expense of the Insta-Shield), seemingly none of the characters or powerups have been altered from how they were in S3&K is a bit worrying.

    When Nintendo revived 2D Mario with NSMB, rather than just have him control almost exactly as he did in World, they gave Mario many of his moves from his 3D games, three new powerups, and even new physics. Each succeeding game gave him additional moves (barring NSMB2), swapped out some old powerups for new ones, and tweaked his jump physics for better or worse.

    I don't want new physics, but I do think new moves/mechanics and powerups would help to keep the series fresh for me, particularly for Sonic (who I still feel would benefit greatly from being able to temporarily scale and switch between walls the same way he could in SLW3DS). I don't doubt the creativity of the Mania team, but I do wonder how much they'd be willing/allowed to alter as far as how the trio handles.

    I realize that, at this point, my paranoia is baseless and I should just wait and see what happens.