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The Sonic Frontiers *SPOILER* Thread (With Unmarked Spoilers)

Discussion in 'General Sonic Discussion' started by MykonosFan, Sep 29, 2022.

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  1. Sneekie

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    You can't interpret the reception as "average." The reviews don't range from "great to terrible," it ranges from "great (and I don't mind the flaws)" to "good (but I REALLY can't stand the flaws)" with a handful of reviews whose receptions are so outstandingly negative (a 2/10?) they are basically outliers. This discussion was had before but to many people a 7/10 is a cusp of being considered "good" not "average," and I point to a reviewer that gave Frontiers a 6/10, but their 6/10 means "good but flawed" while they almost never give games a 9/10 or 10/10.

    People who thought the game would be trash played it and have, at the very least, been much more warmly receptive of the game. Of course, people who already thought it would be good had their expectations met.

    Frontiers has twice as many user reviews on Metacritic than Mania and Generations and the score is still much higher than either (8.8 at the time of this writing).

    The Steam user reviews sit on "Very Positive" with 94% positive reviews (by the way, that's one percent away from being "Overwhelmingly Positive").

    I also disagree with the idea that Kishimoto needs to be let go--if you want to blame him for the bad, then he is responsible for the good too.

    He borderline pulled a Hidemaro Fujibayashi with how well he transitioned from one of the most linear games in the series to their first open-world / open-zone game.

    There are generally weird choices in the game, but many of them can be attributed to a possible lack of time and budget to see the full vision through, and that's not a good enough reason to throw the baby out with the bathwater.

    Even the negative reviews talk about how Frontiers is a big and innovative step in the franchise. SkillUp is one of the more negative reviews and even they say that oh yeah, the new things they do are new and good. The game being a new and innovative take on the franchise is the source of a lot of the game's praise. I really don't know where this take comes from.

    I think we're interacting two incredibly different fanbases here. Your interpretation is not really the conventional wisdom, from what I've seen.

    People really like Frontiers, flaws and all. I'd say it's getting more attention and love in that regard than Mania. I would not be surprised if this is one of the best and fastest selling Sonic games in decades.

    Five years of a focused and passionate vision hindered by what seems to be the typical development hitches Sonic Team faces and what they got was a game with such a good foundation that most people overlook its rough edges, and those who can't still see a game that is more than worth salvaging at worst.

    For all intents and purposes, Sonic Team succeeded. They made a game that is special for the development team and fans. Fans want to see a Frontiers 2 and more importantly they believe that Sonic Team can make that work.

    The only hitch is that the critic average likely isn't as high as Sega expected, but hopefully Sega recognizes the general reception (and sales) over whether a 7 is "good enough."
     
    Last edited: Nov 12, 2022
  2. BlackHole

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    Hey guys...
    [​IMG]
    I love some good ol' unintentional foreshadowing...
     
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  3. Overlord

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    For what it's worth I've always found user reviews on Metacritic and the like utterly worthless: fanboys post 10s, review bombers post 1s. The critical scores tend to be a much more useful number.
     
  4. Sneekie

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    I find the user scores for Sonic at least are more or less accurate to the public opinion. The ultimate reception to Frontiers doesn't really lend to polarizing opinions.

    Back to the story, having beaten the game: does Sonic actually KNOW that Sage is in the Supreme titan in the final battle? He talks to it like he is talking to the Ancients. Sage never says anything to him except her last words too.

    I have a problem with how no one seems to react to her sacrifice, but if he didn't know...I mean, that would still be weird, but it makes the ending make more sense.
     
  5. RikohZX

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    Yeah, that entire ending sequence feels like Sage wasn't even designed for it until the sacrifice? Like I said before, there's also absolutely no reaction besides Sonic's three-sentence "dare to be badass" proclamation towards almost anything about The End, either. Like, you can just tell that entire finale sequence and the ending were based off of the character conversations throughout the game but had nothing to actually do with the central new character of the story or anything.

    Friggin' Chip had more nuance and grace.
     
  6. Epsilonsama

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    I feel the general consensus for Frontiers is from Average to Great with some outliers coming from mostly game critics or youtubers who In my opinion you should always hold their opinion with a grain of salt because they dont play games the same way we do. When you do something as a job specially for news site is an obligation to play X game and sometimes that can affect the score. User scores while more black and white will at least let you know the simple question of is the game is good or not. At the end of the day that's what matters in the end. Is Sonic Frontiers good? Regardless of it's flaws is it good? I bet most people will say yes to that question which is why Frontiers has a high Steam Score of 94%. Can things be improved for a future Frontiers 2? Absolutely. Sonic Team needs to be given a better budget to hire personnel and given time to FULLY work on said game. While Frontiers might have started development as soon as Forces was done but it was 100% not given the full AAA treatment a franchise of it's caliber should get. The crew behind the development of Frontiers was very small for the type of game it was and I'm surprised they were able to get Frontiers be fun from start to finish. Compare the credits for Frontiers vs Witcher 3 or Breath of the Wild and you will notice a huge disparity. In some ways Sonic has the same problem as Pokemon in that the actual game development budget is really small compared to the marketing and reach of the franchise with the main difference being that the main Pokemon formula is barely if ever changed in between releases of main games just the dressing is changed so no matter how terrible the graphics or stories are the main core of Pokemon stays the same which is what people buy that for. Sonic on the other hand is the opposite which each game trying to re-invent the wheel so I just hope the sequel for Frontiers does not pull a Sonic Lost World and instead improves upon what was good of Frontiers.
     
  7. Why is the true final boss a bullet hell game? Why is there a boss monologue throughout that entire sequence? Why is that monologue so difficult to understand, with two voices overlapping the other being drowned out by bullets and lazers? Why did I need to die five times for the game to feel sorry for me and give me an extra chance to get hit before dying? Why couldn't I have just had three lives to begin with?

    Yes, I am salty. But also pretty baffled. It's like if I was playing Super Mario Odyssey and the game just decided the final boss was going to be Guitar Hero.

    But mostly I'm really salty lol
     
  8. Epsilonsama

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    Found a video of someone doing the Titans + - plus the End   at Level 1. Gotta say I definitely wanna tackle the game at level 1 after seeing this.
     
  9. RikohZX

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    Honestly I don't think Level changes your damage output whatsoever for the Titans. Supreme is still pathetically easy and folds like a paper towel. I remember the fights generally being around that length if not longer due to first-time trial and error and me not abusing Parry with impunity at first.
     
  10. BlackHole

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    Apparently, they ran out of time before they could make another standard Super Sonic fight.

    At least they didn't just dump it on you and gave you two hacking sections to get you used to the concept...
     
  11. Trippled

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    I completely agree with you on that front, but I'm not sure if that is the consensus on what the game isn't doing right or what it brings down. The open world seems generally praised. Some don't like the controls at all, think Cyberspace (critics mostly) is actually the better part etc.
     
  12. Since I've completed the game, here's my thoughts on the characterisation of the core cast. I hope I don't come across as too critical, because this is absolutely the best dialogue a Sonic game has had in years, but there are a few niggles here that either confuse me or hinder my enjoyment of the writing. I'm not sure how many users here read the comics and are familiar with Flynn's writing, but some of the dialogue here is written in a style that I've never seen him use for these characters in the Archie and IDW comics.

    First - the thing with Knuckles:
    Knuckles' characterisation here is odd, and feels like a retooling of his personality to retroactively justify his role as commander of the Resistance in Sonic Forces. I believe that Flynn has expressed on the Bumblekast in the past that he felt Knuckles being the leader of the Resistance was strange, given that he's a loner who grew up isolated on Angel Island, who doesn't have any notable leadership skills, who's never been shown to be skilled at managing others, and who doesn't possess any knowledge of large scale military tactics - why would he, as the lone Guardian of the Master Emerald on an uninhabited island? So here, Flynn gives Knuckles a new personality trait to rationalise his sudden shift to Resistance Commander Material. He's now a military leader who directs combat units and clicks his heels together and gives salutes (the heel-clicking and saluting in particular is something I would more readily associate with Antoine than Knuckles). The memory tokens we collect for Knuckles are military medals with his chest emblem on them. This choice of token for Knuckles is especially strange because the other tokens represent something intrinsic to the characters we collect them for. Amy's tokens are love hearts because she's full of love, not just for Sonic, but for the world - her defining traits are her passion and empathy/kindness. Tails' tokens are spanners, because he's a whizz-kid with a love for tinkering and machines, and they're coloured yellow and white, with the two white tipped ends of the spanner representing his two tails, that he was bullied for and, well, define his nickname. But Knuckles' tokens represent something supposedly intrinsic to the character that we've literally never seen before Sonic Forces. They show that he's... a good military leader I guess (what a weird thing to say about Knuckles lol), and more abstractly, a sense of duty? I know Sonic Team wants Knuckles to be taken more seriously now, but I don't think this new military commander direction feels like a natural extension of his character. The part where he tells Sonic "you're too trusting" when Sonic defends Sage from him is especially tone-deaf, considering the main joke with Knuckles for like 15 years was how gullible he is. I'm surprised Flynn didn't have Sonic point out the hypocrisy of it, with all the references to past games he's making, and that just makes the line even worse.

    Second - the thing with Tails:
    While I do appreciate Flynn acknowledging the inconsistencies in Tails' game portrayal in his typically on-the-nose way ("then I'm... wildly inconsistent!"), and the overall independence arc Tails seems to be heading towards is promising, (but will, in all likelihood, only amount to a comic book side-story - I'd love to be wrong about this though) the actual interaction-by-interaction dialogue with Tails feels strangely... robotic? Flynn's usually avoided writing Tails as this overly verbose 'intelligent science geek' who won't stop spouting scientific jargon in everyday talk when he knows his friends won't understand him. Flynn mostly has comic Tails speak like, well, a normal person - an intelligent, knowledgeable kid who can make observations about and create mechanical and technological marvels, but still a quite down-to-earth and humble boy who talks like most of the other characters. Here, the way Tails talks feels much more Pontac and Graff-esque: a typical geek spouting jargon so Sonic can say "uh, can you repeat that again in English?" - or in-game the version we hear is "those sure are words you said just now!" Tails even has a smarmy smile after Sonic says that, like it gives him a little ego boost when he has to 'dumb down' his speech so Sonic can understand him, which is consistent with his portrayal by Pontac and Graff but just sucks as a Tails fan. He's so overly verbose that his dialogue becomes stilted. He can't just say "the ground cracked open!". He has to say "it revealed a subterranean pathway!" When Tails is talking about how he feels in his digitised form he says "this is not an ideal working condition. If I had my body, I could be so much more efficient!" This is robotic dialogue - it's like something Emerl would say before he learnt how to talk more naturally. Let Tails talk like a normal kid and simmer down with the jargon. It's so weird because this is the first time I've felt like this with Flynn's writing of Tails.

    Third - the thing with Sage and Eggman:
    I like the idea of Eggman becoming emotionally attached to one of his creations, and it makes sense that it would happen for Sage. She has a higher degree of emotional intelligence and empathy than Eggman would ever be capable of creating himself, because she's integrated into Cyber Space, containing the hopes and dreams and feelings of the Ancients, which affects her programming and dramatically changes the scope of what she's capable of. But I don't think Eggman's role as "father" really feels earned in the story. Eggman calling her "my daughter" just sounds odd when we're barely shown what times they've spent together. The dramatic, sad montage of Sage seeing the brotherly bond between Sonic and Tails and thinking about the family she wishes she could be for Eggman just doesn't have the emotional impact it should do. In fact, it's kind of funny, with the sepia coloured flashbacks literally just being a few scenes of Eggman and Sage standing around talking to each-other and nothing else. I understand that Flynn tried to set up Eggman's yearning for family in the Egg Memos; he laments all the affection shown for the long-dead Maria in his own family when he was "right! there!", which suggests that he felt emotionally neglected growing up. It's the most we've gotten about Eggman's past since Adventure 2, where he speaks about looking up to his grandfather because of all the great things he accomplished in his life. On paper, the idea of Eggman forming a deeper emotional connection to Sage sounds good, but the execution here just falls flat. I also don't think Sage is particularly interesting, because her story really is just a generic 'robot learns about emotions and faith and not seeing the world through data and simulations' - which has been told thousands of times, and before in the Sonic franchise itself. Only Sage's story, despite being spurred by her observations of Sonic, takes place almost entirely divorced from him, to the point that Sonic himself doesn't really seem to care about Sage by the end. She seemingly dies and we get no reaction from Sonic, and he doesn't even wonder where she is.

    Those are my thoughts immediately after finishing Sonic Frontiers. I'll have to sit and think about what I feel about the story of the Ancients, and the origin of the Chaos Emeralds, but in terms of characterisation that's all I have to say. I don't think the writing in this game is as fantastic as most other fans seem to - I'd say it's "pretty good" at most. I do love that when Flynn becomes writer, we start getting references to the 90s cartoons. Sonic says "let's do it to it" multiple times, Eggman says "I hate that hedgehog" in the Egg Memos, Sage calls Sonic "the fastest thing alive", that's nice.
     
    Last edited: Nov 12, 2022
  13. Sneekie

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    I'm sure that's the point, considering Sonic's joke immediately after ("No, I'm not. Trust me.") and the fact that Sage is more trustworthy than Eggman.

    I cannot agree with this; the lack of reaction in the ending (which having gotten to the ending, I believe that he legitimately doesn't know that Sage died) is weird specifically because he is shown to have cared a lot about Sage. In the main plot, he is the one willing to talk it out with her, their relationship becomes more friendly while still antagonistic, and there are Side Stories and flavor text that show that Sonic does care about her.
     
  14. Epsilonsama

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    I don't get what critics are drinking cause the Cyberspace portions are the worst. I hope SEGA does not listen to said Critics cause I want the Open Zone concept to be expanded more. Maybe remove the 2D Sections? That be a dream cause if I want to play 2D Sonic I play Sonic Mania or the Genesis/SMS Classics or even the Advance Series.
     
  15. Sneekie

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    Cyber Space is Green Hill and Chemical Plant, it's "Sonic." The stages are linear and sometimes 2D, like "Real Sonic." That's why critics like it better (well, that and despite its controls and physics, it's still more polished overall than the Open Zone).

    Disliking Cyber Space is ironically more common among hardcore fans, who know where those levels are from, how they were done before, and who find the Open Zone more refreshing; meanwhile, Cyber Space is more conventionally "Sonic" and asks less of you, which appeals more to casual fans. That is, in fact, why Sonic Team included those levels.

    I'm petty, but such takes annoy me because yeah, Sega would probably listen to those critiques and adjust accordingly (but thankfully, people do generally also love the Open Zone) and going back to that format is not the evolution Sonic needs.

    I'm glad that most people appreciate the risks taken even if they don't like the game itself.
     
  16. Epsilonsama

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    I enjoyed many Sonic games besides the Classics but bad 2D is not Sonic, at least for me. I feel that instead of trying to imitate the past they should go into the future which is why I love the Open Zones, Combat and Boss Battles. The things I enjoyed the most are the new things the game has to offer. The Cyberspace was mostly old levels but worst cause Sonic feels off in the Cyberspace.
     
  17. I mean, he cares about her throughout the main game because Sonic is a generally caring guy; I'm only saying that the lack of reaction at the end makes it seem to me like his feelings about Sage don't extend beyond how he feels about any ole rando he meets on his adventures. Even a moment where Sonic thinks "huh, where did Sage go? I couldn't find her after the explosion" would have gone a long way to convincing me that his connection with her left SOME lasting impact on him. As it is, what we're presented with is that Sonic is just like "whelp, adventures over, let's go guys" and Sage doesn't factor in his mind at all. He doesn't know that she potentially died, and he doesn't reflect on the possibility either.
     
  18. Starduster

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    Thoughts on the idea that the Ancients were responsible for the Gizoids? The shape of the Ancients' heads looks fairly similar to the Gizoid headpieces.
     
  19. The shape of the Ancients' heads are supposed to resemble Chaos 0, not Gizoids. Eggman mentions in the Egg Memos that the Ancients are related to Chaos (how this lines up with the lore of Chaos being a mutated chao, I have no idea. It may be a retcon? You could rationalise it by having a chao on Angel Island encounter the pillar that teleported Knuckles, and that chao is mutated by coming into contact with Cyber Space? But then, if the head resemblance is caused by a unique mutation event... why do Chaos chao exist? Uhhh)
     
    Last edited: Nov 12, 2022
  20. RikohZX

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    Their point is the Gizoids potentially being based off of the Ancients retroactively, not about Chaos and his whole mutation from an Ancient thing. Though in this case, I have absolutely no idea if Sonic Chronicles is even considered canon either, given the Nocturnus Clan made them in the first place in that story's continuity.
     
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