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The Enigma That Is Knuckles' Chaotix's Development

Discussion in 'General Sonic Discussion' started by The Joebro64, Aug 22, 2022.

  1. JaxTH

    JaxTH

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    Jack shit.
    I used to play it all the time on emulator without savestates. I always try to have Espio in my party.
     
  2. Black Squirrel

    Black Squirrel

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    It's wiki time. There's no need to be afraid.
    https://forums.sonicretro.org/index.php?threads/adventures-with-chaotix.39934/

    A few times legitimately, many more times illegitimately.

    One thing I didn't really check is what happens if you attempt to "finish" some of the prototypes. I don't know if they all correctly trigger the good ending, for example, and I know some of the attraction select screens get a little screwy when levels are cleared. Also if it saves properly.
     
  3. Andrew75

    Andrew75

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    I bought the game back at its launch and still have it, and Yeah, really wanted there to be something more after wire mode back in the day. I was thinking they’d at least do something similarly special like with Sonic and Knuckle’s super emeralds. Perhaps be able set the time of day ourselves, or extra ending content or even extra special last boss fight.
    After Beating Chaotix multiple times, I was always left with the feeling like there was meant to to be more to the game than the hollow endings we did get, especially after being spoiled by Sonic and knuckles extra ending content from a game which came out just a year before.


    Ninja edit:
    I remember someone on discord posted pictures of a cut boss (eggman sprites) or maybe they were sprites for a cut scene or something a few years back to do with a boss. Forgot which channel and who it was. But i thought it was pretty cool.
     
    Last edited: Sep 1, 2022
  4. Played it as recently as yesterday on actual hardware. My 32x is wonky which makes it difficult to get passed like 70%, but I have beaten it a few times through emulation.
     
  5. Taylor

    Taylor

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    I have a year or so ago. It's fun to mess around with the physics but it does kind wear out its welcome for reasons already said in this thread. The aesthetic is top notch, though.
     
  6. Andrew75

    Andrew75

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    If there were a planned Saturn version, would be nice if sega could revive it with its original intended Saturn concepts intact. But ehh again, if there were a Saturn version that is….
     
  7. Blastfrog

    Blastfrog

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    My speculation is that if there was a Saturn version, the code was abandoned and they went back to Genesis Crackers as a basis. They could've made assets for it that were reused in the 32X version, however.
     
  8. Gryson

    Gryson

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    Here's an old tweet from @ymn_cnc_miroir , who worked on the Japanese manual for Chaotix. Admittedly not the most direct connection to the game, and his memory seems foggy, but for the sake of documenting it:

    So that's five people who were involved with the game in Japan in some way who make no mention of a Saturn version, including one who outright denies there was ever any Saturn version.

    From Sega of America, we have two people claiming there was a Saturn version:

    1) Tom Kalinske, who gave an apparently confused answer based on a leading question. In his role as CEO of SOA, he would not be expected to know the particulars of game development in Japan.

    2) An SOA employee who only joined the Chaotix project in a non-development role after it was transferred to the 32X. This employee admits he doesn't fully know the history of the game prior to joining the project, so he appears to be passing along second-hand info. Given his account, it's entirely possible the game never even reached a conceptual stage on the Saturn. It could have been as little as a suggestion for all we know.
     
    Last edited: Sep 2, 2022
  9. Chibisteven

    Chibisteven

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    I've played Chaotix almost to completion. I've yet to get the Good Ending because I haven't mastered all the special stages yet. The game isn't as terrible as some people make it out to be. It was quite fun at first and for a while. The special stages sort of drag it down a little for me.
     
  10. saxman

    saxman

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    I understand your logic, but I think you're making conclusions regarding Tom Kalinske that can't be verified on their face. He isn't *expected* to know much... but he may know what he claims for any number of reasons.

    And you may be right ultimately. But I still think we need more information to reach a definitive conclusion, because there's a very large chunk of the timeline missing.
     
  11. Azookara

    Azookara

    yup Member
    I've completed Chaotix a few times, and 100%'d it twice. Once about 15 years ago, again about 3 years ago. It's a fun distraction to cut your brain off to for a few hours and soak in the pretty aesthetics. I tried recently to 100% it a third time, but every time I land on Amazing Arena I feel like rage-quitting, lol. Can't stand that stage.

    I actually did this the other day as an experiment, haha; I used the Saturn 2D controller and put it on R. It worked really well! It felt like it was almost meant to be there, even if it never was. It just feels right. In fact, I can kinda see how this game would fare better on a controller with more than three buttons, such as the Saturn pad.

    A/B/C is jump (as always), X/Y/Z is grab, L is call, R is hold. There. Simple enough.

    I don't disagree here, either. The rubber band was a neat idea that feels satisfying to use at times, but I think the fact that it tosses you around with no way to prevent it from doing so is what kills it for most players. People are put off as early as the tutorial level by how it makes you struggle to even use springs properly.

    Maybe the tether should've activated only when HOLDing? I mean, it's the only place where it finds itself useful; the rest of the time its an active hindrance.
     
  12. Gryson

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    I think trying to reach a definitive conclusion is the real problem here. It's the wrong approach.

    It's a burden of proof fallacy. How can you prove something doesn't exist? You can't. We have a developer who worked on both the Genesis version and the 32X version saying with confidence that there was no Saturn version, but a lot of people aren't willing to accept that. I understand that. We can't be sure. Maybe there's something he doesn't know. Basically, that response can be used for any negative evidence. No amount of people saying "it doesn't exist" is enough to satisfy. That's why it's a fallacy.

    But it's important to understand the idea of burden of proof. The burden of proof must be on showing that something exists. Right now, that burden of proof has not been met. We do not have a single shred of concrete evidence that Chaotix was ever developed for the Saturn.

    All we can do is keep searching for that proof. Until it's found, the default assumption should be that it doesn't exist (but there is reason to think it might).

    It's just a bit frustrating to see every wiki state firmly that Chaotix was a Saturn game when there is no proof and good reason to doubt. This isn't unique to Chaotix.

    It happens so much with Japanese game development, to the point where it's practically a meme among Japanese developers on Twitter: "So English Wikipedia says I created this, but I've never even heard of it."
     
  13. saxman

    saxman

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    I agree with 90% of everything you said. The only thing I'd differ is the default position: I don't think we can have one. Perhaps I'm just parsing words a bit, but if there's reason to believe it might exist as well as not, my stance is a simple "we don't know". That said, wikis probably should not be saying plainly that it was on the Saturn at one point. All we're able to prove is the Genesis and 32X. And perhaps that makes it the de-facto default. Wait, did I just defeat my own point? :eyebrow:

    But Wikipedia is a joke anyway, and only seems to want to regress further. People should take some of what's on there with a grain of salt. I much prefer the Retro wiki pages. Unfortunately, those don't pop up in web searches anymore (robots.txt?).
     
    Last edited: Sep 2, 2022
  14. Gryson

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    That's an untenable position in history research. Any tiny piece of questionable evidence would then lead to the stalemate of "we don't know." I think the evidence has to much stronger than it is now before that step is made. Edit: That doesn't mean the counter claims are thrown out. They're just considered for what they are: possible leads that should be looked into.

    The Retro wiki definitely has an image problem among former developers in Japan. It's embarrassing when people like Okunari cite Retro as the source of the ridiculous "Mr. Needlemouse" thing.

    Take the Dynamite Headdy page: "A Sega 32X port was once planned, but eventually cancelled due to the system's poor sales."

    There is zero proof of this. It's based on 1) a tiny blurb in an unreliable European magazine, and 2) Treasure president Masato Maegawa saying they were considering possibly porting some of their Mega Drive games to the 32X.

    I've brought this up before and as I recall the conclusion was "Well, we can't be sure it didn't exist." That is the very definition of the burden of proof fallacy.
     
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  15. Black Squirrel

    Black Squirrel

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    It's wiki time. There's no need to be afraid.
    If you find an issue on our wikis... fix it. If it's an unreferenced statement that looks dumb, it probably is.

    There are 30,000 pages on Sega Retro, I can't keep on top of all of them.
     
  16. The info and hard work that goes into Sega Retro is quite staggering, but like with any big database they'll be issue's.
     
  17. Xiao Hayes

    Xiao Hayes

    Classic Eggman art Member
    I thought this quote...
    ...wasn't implying "we don't know" about the Saturn version, but about Kalinske himself. I mean, he isn't a reliable source but that doesn't mean everything he's said is wrong or a lie. Not defending him, anyway, I'm with Gryson in that there's no real Saturn version, a quick try at best. I would expect a document analyzing the viability of the port more than a proof of concept of it.

    I think the "it was bigger but they had to cut it" statement is more like a Sonic 2 case, to the point they had to cut stuff from the original project even after changing the target platform.
     
  18. LockOnTommy11

    LockOnTommy11

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    I managed to get my hands on an excellent condition 32x for - what is nowadays considered - a reasonable price.

    Having spent a lot more time with Knuckles Chaotix, it really is a strange game, more so than I remembered from playing it emulated a good 15 years ago.

    The levels are all just barely populated playgrounds; a few boxes, rings, switches, badniks and… that’s mostly it. Level transitions are oddly cut and entering the special stages just insta-cuts without a warp effect.
    If the player doesn’t read the manual (which I don’t have) then they have no idea what the plot really is, or what’s going on. With Sonic games you often don’t need details as it’s usually pretty clear, but not here. What is Robotnik doing? What are the chaos rings? Why are the badniks powered by black rings? What is Metal Sonic even doing and why did he pick up Robotnik at the start? The presentation is just weird and oddly void of much detail or character.

    Presumably, the attractions are all virtual reality because of you die the level fades out to an other-worldly backdrop, but that’s also not stated anywhere, beyond it being some sort of magical Robotnik-conquered island.

    When you beat a special stage the game tells you that you “got the chaos ring” which shows that they didn’t clean up the text in the game either, along with that weird text about Knuckles and the 32x on the title screen.

    Honestly I think it’s a neat title and the ring mechanic is interesting, but it seems that the entire game is just built around dealing with the mechanic rather than mastering it, and for that reason the game just feels empty. It’s no wonder the game’s not really seen as a real Sonic title and why it hasn’t been re-released behind that one time briefly in 2007. The devs really needed at least two extra months to complete this game and add polish. I’ve not even beaten the game and gotten to the “ending” yet, which I know isn’t going to be worth the time at the end of it, I’m just playing through as it’s just… interesting. I think that’s the word that sums (Knuckles) Chaotix up.

    It’s a super fascinating game and I can’t wait until we get more information on the development.
     
    Last edited: Sep 4, 2022
  19. XCubed

    XCubed

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    You’re right about the game being empty. Why haven’t we seen any mods of the game? I’m shocked it hasn’t been “Megamix’d” by now into something much more enjoyable.
     
  20. Blue Spikeball

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    I've always found it funny. For all the complaints we get about the level design in games like CD, Chaotix or Advance 3, there don't seem to be any mods to correct it. Meanwhile we get a zillion level mods for the core games, which don't need them that much. It's like Sonic fans would rather reinvent the wheel than address the games' shortcomings.