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Mr Loopone

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Posts posted by Mr Loopone

  1. It just seems how to put it, a bit of a tall order? A case of being a nice idea but just way too unrealistic in terms of its goal.

    Besides who would this appeal to? The fanbase for SatAM is declining over the years as many of the fans have moved on and some have even passed away. The younger generation will pass on it because they don't know the characters, would look too old (sadly a criticism that does exist) and completely different in style to what Sonic has been for the past 10-15 years or so. Even the comics that were the last part of its legacy completely changed over with a new company, new characters and a style more closer to the current Sonic. Taking another example, while I might be an AoSTH fan I wouldn't want a 2nd season as that time is over and many of the people who worked on that aren't around anymore.

    If they got permission from Sega (doubtful), then it is a case where they haven't done a proper plan of the whole thing. All we know is that they have one of the composers and 11 episodes have been written. The money needed to raise for a high quality cartoon is hundreds of thousands or even millions of dollars and that's if they outsourced the animation to South Korea or where ever, that's per episode too. Voice Actors want money, animators want money, all of the other staff associated with animation want money.

    If they haven't then this project will get shut down just on the grounds of using an IP. It doesn't say Sonic but has his mug on it. It is also ironic where it says that this is a non-profit thing when they have a patreon for funding.

    As for the trailer itself. Looking at the animation, could tell within 5 seconds that it looks off even though Sonic and Sally look like they did back then. Can definitely tell that it has tweening like it really wants to try but the emulation of the whole thing is off. It feels too mechanical. If this was a fan thing, then would give it some slack and would have been half decent but if this was a pitch to a cartoon, it would have been turned down and I would have done the same. Some moments it looks more like a parody of AoSTH in terms of its animation regarding Sonic (even the that's no good moment was lifted there).

    Sally sounds close to her original voice actress Kath Soucie and did a good job but Sonic? He doesn't sound close to Jaleel White, he speaks too fast. Sure sometimes Sonic did say things quickly but not all the time. It is perhaps to mask the inexperience of the voice actor or perhaps even a different voice actor to take the role. This is also the problem here. We don't know what the other characters are going to sound like. SatAM was more than just Sonic & Sally after all.

    It reminds me of those recent reboots that are on Youtube that have an extremely low budget rather than a successor to 26 year old cartoon.

  2. Many of the early "indie" [personally call them small developers since they often having very few staff or even one person] games got popular just because they had staff members from games companies in the past. Broken AgeShovel Knight and even Fez are very good examples of this, even Shantae can be considered a popular indie series. It is still like this for a few games such as FTL/Into the Breach were done by ex-2K staff. If it wasn't from a games company already then heavily associated with a community like Undertale and Freedom Planet, the latter was a Sonic fan game originally that happened to be a bit more unique when it came to SAGE at the time. Some early indie games were involved with the industry but didn't work on any games before or did Flash games/shareware games. One of the earliest indie games ever Manic Miner was made because the programmer was talented enough to code on the Spectrum, yes Manic Miner could be considered an indie game today. Nowadays with kids on the Internet, it is pretty much what entertains them more and down to luck. It could even be a bad game that gets attention for the memes and not out of quality. Maybe a well known streamer played the game out of boredom.

    Alot of it is also just down to the type of the game. Indie games were made to be either filling a void left behind due to that very few publishers want to invest in that genre (e.g. beat em ups, platformers until more recently, classic RPGs, shoot em ups, well 2D games in general at one point, arcade sports games, arcade racing games), something different or were made out of limited resources, as is the case of many of the early ones and still is to a extent. At one point people thought every indie game looked like a NES game even though actually quite a fair bit weren't technically (even something like Shovel Knight is slightly more advanced than the NES).

    There have been a few indie racing games lately trying to get fill that void outside of the simulations (e.g. Milestone motorbike games, Forza, F1, etc), think the only success story was Horizon Chase and that was because the developers were such big fans of Top Gear (the old SNES game) that they put their passion into making the game. Plus it had a different model in terms of marketing as it that it was a mobile game at first that got a console/PC port later on. Many indie racing games have either stumbled on the final corner (e.g. Xenon Racer, GRIP) or didn't even get off the starting grid (e.g. 90s Arcade Racer).

    Sadly though many of the indie games are fighting in the same space. Not the same space as AAA or traditional publishers/developers like open world, action adventure, FPS, online battle royale, loot box/slot machine simulator, puzzle for mobile. Can recall that quite a lot of them are Metroidvanias or platformers for instance. So now that they have to really stand out to get attention whether its art style, gameplay mechanics, level design. Within the past two years we had Axiom Verge and Hollow Knight for Metroidvanias, Cuphead for a run and gun, Celeste, Gris, A Hat in Time and not as successful Yooka Laylee for platformers with the latter two being 3D. Those are just the noticeable ones.

    Also when it comes to attention, it seems to move from pillar to post. First indie games got popular on XBLA then when that well dried up moved to Steam or even the Vita and now it is Switch as well as various PC outlets. Why they move? Too much competition and in case of the first two got really over-saturated with crap while the Vita just died. It will happen on the Switch and probably always has right now, more so on the US store due to the rating systems/translations that many indie developers can't afford or don't want to do.

  3. Sonic Spinball is one of the earliest missed opportunities. It is something that writes itself as in the gameplay of the Sonic stages mixed with pinball with the flippers and many of the features of pinball. Sonic 2 was praised for Casino Night.

    The problem was that it was handed off to developers that weren't suitable for the job. Not to bash the programmers because they did a great job with the PGA Tour Golf series and the RoadBlasters port but going from one style of gameplay to one where they don't have experience in just shows. It is like getting someone who is used to 3D games to make a 2D physics based game that exactly what this is. It was slow like 30fps, it was clunky to control and even the STI side where the music and graphics lie felt unsuitable. It was a grungy look, music was well people mock the options theme and when it tries like Lava Powerhouse or the Machine, it still feels flat. It didn't feel like pinball or Sonic. Pinball is fast, it is eyepopping by its lights, colours and artwork and around that era had some energetic music rather like these. Rather like Sonic back then.

    It also feel didn't do enough of the pinball side as in no multiball or the enough of the Sonic styled gameplay around the tables. Probably had Yuji Naka developed the game or cutting the ego aside got someone to do it in the Sonic 2 engine, it would be a classic worth playing. As it is though, a massive missed opportunity.

    While it did get a more traditional pinball game in the form of Sonic Pinball Party, it was just too little too late as it was poorly marketed, a handheld spinoff that is forgotten and was also mysteriously delayed in Europe. Positively it felt like pinball, the pinball and Sonic mix were also done better but it was also a Sonic Team crossover too with other series. Sadly it didn't get another chance as it is a combination that worked well had it been done right.

  4. Welcome to the SSMB! Hope you enjoy your stay here and yes, it is comfy, nice and there are good feelings most of the time. :)

    Wait a minute...I know you! Now that's a surprise coming here. You might not know me though but at least give a few hints such as former tennis player, often at the gaming section, lunatic fringe and was one of the oldest members when I was at a different place to the point where one of the members considered me an Old Man. To be honest I don't blame you for making different types of videos, YTPs have had a negative effect on people as I know from personal experience. Hope you get to post some of the artwork here in the future!

  5. It's possible but this is Sonic Team that we are talking about. They have a clear divide on which characters go where. There are also characters that have more or less retired and rarely used if they can help it because they aren't done in house for a Sonic Team game such as Fang, Bean, Bark, Cream, Emerl, Blaze, more recently Sticks (only because she appeared in the Rio Olympics) so you are probably lucky to get those even in a spinoff game and probably a push to even get a comic appearance. It was lucky that Mighty and Ray were brought back for Mania Plus and I think they had to push for that.

    Unless there is a leadership or policy change, it is going to be unlikely that Classic characters are going to get the Modern treatment unless they already did for Adventure (e.g. Sonic, Tails, Knuckles, Amy, Eggman, Metal Sonic) or Heroes (Espio, Charmy and Vector). It is also the odd one out because the rest of the Chaotix got the Modern treatment but not Mighty.

    Then there's the other way around where some characters are locked to Modern such as the Chaotix (minus Mighty) despite that they were around the classic era and Vector was a Classic character even before that because he was designed around Sonic 1 era. Chaotix is a weird case and I don't know why that is, Sonic Team seems to have issues regarding that game.

    As for playable in 3D, well... For the past 10 years, it has been mostly Sonic only that has been playable in the main games with the others being in the sidelines. Until Forces where Shadow came out of hiding for some DLC. As for the spinoff games, even they have been restricted to more or less the most popular characters so that's Sonic, Tails, Knuckles, Amy, Shadow, Eggman, Metal Sonic, Rouge, Vector with the first 7 getting full priority and also pushing for Silver, Omega (maybe not much now) and Zavok. Big was also brought back despite being absent for years because of memes and a boost in popularity. It is also why people were disappointed with the roster of Team Sonic Racing.

  6. If you asked me I prefer the more light hearted takes rather than the nitty gritty stuff so my tastes reflect on that (and also sort of limited on what I can watch and enjoy).

    AoSTH is still my favorite Sonic cartoon and one of my favorite cartoons in general. I just like how silly it is yet was close to the games at the time compared to nearly every single Sonic cartoon up to Mania Adventures where it surpassed it. The Sonic and Tails partnership, Robotnik, Scratch & Grounder being the entertaining villains, the side characters aren't annoying and even though it was very early days even got Sonic and Tails characterisations "right". Sonic being the brave, cocky yet very helpful person while Tails who is his best friend who is into gadgets and yes, even becomes a hero in a couple of episodes. The animation is inconsistent where when it got good, it got good and when it got bad you could tell but it has that charm that is very hard to replicate because even the badly animated episodes usually have a good moment or two and the style gets away with it. Very few cartoons have that title. I just like how light hearted it is when even its most high stakes episode (Mass Transit Trouble) is still tame compared to a metric ton of stuff out there. Even if it is my favourite, there are still episodes that I wouldn't watch such as Momma Robotnik Returns where she abuses Sonic while she is his carer. Would have loved to see a second season but the chances of that happening or a successor is pretty much impossible.

    SatAM was okay. Back in the day, I liked it just as much as AoSTH. It turns out that I only really liked Season 1 of the show with Season 2 apart from two episodes (The Void and The Doomsday Project) not very much. It might be because Season 2 wasn't aired much until it got a rerun of the show years later while Season 1 was aired more often so got to see more of those episodes. The voice acting was good and the animation was decent/good while more consistent. I did notice that it wasn't very game like however it was the case where the original TV network wanted this type of show and all things considering it still kept the loose idea of the environmental issue that the first two games had. Robotnik was just there though.

    The thing with SatAM is that it is really hard to judge the show because there are 3 different styles; Heads or Tails, Season 1 and Season 2. Heads or Tails is strange because it is SatAM but feels more like AoSTH in tone including Tails. Season 1 was more balanced with the Freedom Fighters, Sonic was the main character but the others played the role fairly. While it did get dark at spots, there was still a bit of hope and adventure. Only downside was lack of Tails focus. Season 2 is where the problem lie with the focus on Dulcy, Sonic getting stupider while Sally is getting more bossier and being more of the main character, the other characters were more pushed to the wayside, the two Antoine episodes where they tried to be like comedic but missed the mark and Blast to the Past? Too depressive for my tastes. As for why I liked The Void and The Doomsday Project, the former was more of a Sonic focused episode where he is trapped so he has to figure out how to escape while the latter is the power of teamwork to stop Robotnik and a bit of an uplifting ending. Apart from that cliffhanger...

    Underground was err... Well I only watched a couple of episodes. Not keen on the idea of the show. The animation was decent, not great but okay. Nothing much to say.

    OVA was pretty good. What I liked about it was that it had the basic core but did so well with the Sonic, Tails and Knuckles partnership with the banter between them and Eggman. It felt like a loose Sonic CD adaptation with Metal Sonic and similar style in terms of animation but in a lower budget. The animation was quite good and was able to watch the thing without complaints because when it comes to anime, tend to be really picky for some reason. Only thing that was questionable was Sarah, she did felt out of place and was only put there because cat girls was a thing in anime at the time.

    X I didn't like at all. I tried 6 episodes of the show and none of them were enjoyable with episode 1 being the closest to that mark as it that it was the only one that was close to decent. I didn't like the storylines, I didn't like how Chris was the main character, I didn't like how Sonic barely appeared in the show of his namesake and I don't think that I liked the other characters from what I remember. Maybe the Doc Brown looking Uncle Chuck was okay. The animation was awful and this is from blooming TMS, a studio that back then had a high reputation for quality animation (and still does if you count their recent work). Their work on AoSTH well the one that they did do and Man of the Year were pardon the pun miles better.

    Boom I didn't really watch any episode and really only watched clips of the show. Like the bits that I saw and the 3D animation was fine but don't know whether I could watch the entire series.

    Mania Adventures I liked watching but have to be in the right mood. In the right mood it is a joy to watch with its animation, only show that is game accurate so the characters are on point and the simple yet effective plot. It has a Mr. Bean type of tone but unlike Mr. Bean where the lack of dialogue is played for laughs to show the comedy more, here it is can be a damper to watch if not in the right mood. At least the episodes are short so the problem isn't as bad as it could have been.

    It is a shame that Man of the Year was just left abandoned. That to me would have a really delightful Sonic cartoon. Like Mania Adventures in tone but with that lovely TMS Animaniacs style animation and then some. Decades ago, did check on Telecom's website (the animation studio involved and it was done in 1996) and apparently it was going to be a 4 parter so we don't know whether they got made or still exist.

    If you asked what my ideal Sonic cartoon would be; it would pretty much be AoSTH in terms of the tone and the Sonic/Tails partnership, Man of the Year in terms of animation style, Mania Adventures in terms of game accuracy and Knuckles. Also the adventure aspect from the OVA too.

    As for the new series, well we don't know much if anything so it is just a wild guess at best:

    If it is Classic, then it'll be a follow up to Mania Adventures. It's simply because I can't see a 20 minute cartoon with no dialogue getting a greenlight in this day and age where kids sometimes struggle watching anything that isn't a few minutes long. So it probably will keep to the short format and same formula. As much as I like a voice acted classic Sonic cartoon, with current Sega in charge that won't happen. It is also beneficial to them as it would keep the production costs down and it is the most likely option. If it is Mania Adventures Season 2, please bring Fang the Sniper into it. Am pretty curious to see him in an cartoon.

    If it is Modern however, then it could go one or two routes. The first route is an action cartoon but personally not X style. It'll be like the current comics mixed with the current games. There might be new characters especially if they have a female character who is either with the gang or with Eggman (or both) but probably will stick to the Sonic, Tails, Knuckles, Amy, Shadow, Rouge, Eggman, Silver, Chaotix, maybe even Deadly Six route. It wouldn't be Cream or Blaze (even if the latter would be a good choice) because Sega have more or less retired those characters and Honey is more or less Classic Rouge as a fashion designer in the eyes of Sega considering its source material. Sticks might have appeared in the Olympics but I imagine that she's retired too. The new female character would most likely be her own character in her own way who is useful to whoever. Can't really see anyone else really... With enough content, it could be a 20 minute cartoon with a loose continuity. Enough so people won't get lost but just enough to have an ongoing plot. The second route is also likely and that is a comedic cartoon a bit like Boom but more to do with the games and maybe not as self referential, around about the same running time as that roughly 7-10 minutes each episode. Either those options, I would like to see.

    There is also a possibility that it could be a movie tie-in or an anime but probably wouldn't. If it was an anime, we would have heard something and considering that the previous two attempts flopped in their home country, they really won't try for a 3rd time.

  7. Decided to upgrade my avatar to the 21st century even if I ironically joined here during this century. Originally I was going to use this for this year but then I thought well artists don't really like their work used outside of their own accord even when credited so I went for plan B, something that is on my mind and reflecting the past with an uncertain future.

    It is the case of coming full circle. Where has before the avatar was from the first episode, this one is from the last episode (well so far). From a promising driver with a smug on his face to someone who looks like that he's had enough and has let go over the years while the stakes are high. Where you question whether you do not know whether it is reality or fictional any more. It is fitting for what I'm going through.

    So why Lupin? Simple, he is the closest anime or any character (living or fictional) to what I resemble. Oh and like Sly Cooper on which it was based on this.

  8. It really does depend how Americanized Sonic is because we have its current form that is pretty much influenced quite a bit from America but still has some Japanese design to him to full blown American made.

    If it is current form but just made in the US, then he might have not lasted that long. A lot of the American Sonic stuff such as the comics and the cartoons were only made due to the success of the first two games (as well as CD and the 8-bit games elsewhere). If it was made straight away as its first game, you wouldn't have had the Freedom Fighters or indeed any future Sonic characters but Sonic & Robotnik would be still there. For the US made games, we would have a fair idea of what they are going to be like because they sort of exist in terms of platformers and American made games didn't really have a good reputation back then apart from a couple of companies (EA and Midway). It'll be most likely done by either BlueSky Software or Sega Interactive. Examples are TaleSpin, Batman Returns, Greendog and for BlueSky; Jurassic Park, Ren and Stimpy. The music wouldn't be iconic but rather that GEMS sound so it'll be bland. The game wouldn't be as fast but rather standard or even slow paced. Imagine that SatAM tech demo game and that's probably how Sonic might have been in terms of pace. It wouldn't look as colorful but drab at worse with some stiff animation. The level design would be blocky and simple rather than the curves, loops or the multiple routes. Expect control issues and dodgy collision detection a plenty. Even writing that means that Sonic would have been lucky to get decent reviews nevermind being the Mario beater that it ended up. It would have been lucky to compete against a B rated platformer nevermind Super Mario World! As soon as the mainstream anime wave of the US or the rave scene in Europe kicked in, Sonic would have been seen as old hat and pushed aside that's if he's lucky to get more than one game. It was also during this time that Sega was cutting back on American produced games so as soon as the Saturn appeared, that's it for the blue hedgehog with no comeback.

    If it was fully American made without Ohshima giving them a hand, it might be like this... One of the scrapped plans during Sonic 1's US development was to replace Sonic with its own American mascot and not those scrapped character designs for Sonic either. Since it would be early 1990s, imagine something like Kid Chameleon, ToeJam & Earl or even Greendog in tone and it wouldn't be too far of what it might be; probably a human with a backwards cap, baggy trousers, sunglasses and really mismatch of colors who was either a surfer or a cool dude as it was radical back then. If it would have been an animal, it wouldn't be a hedgehog that's for sure. 

    10 hours ago, Mountaindewandsprite said:

    I for one think that it would've been a lot like early PS1 games such as Crash Bandicoot and Rayman and emulate the Archie comics series.

    Not really. Crash Bandicoot was inspired by Sonic and Donkey Kong Country, if Sonic didn't exist as its current form neither would Crash or even DKC. Rayman was its own thing because its French and probably took cues from Mario as well as European platformers of the time so it wouldn't have affected or influenced other series.

  9. The original voice recordings? Extremely doubtful that those still exist since DiC has changed hands twice since and might be lost. The masters that they used for DVDs and streaming might isolate the voice and music/sound effects (I think they do considering that these shows get dubbed into other languages but not 100% sure) however it is extremely hard to get them especially outside of the business or broadcasting. They wouldn't put those online that's for sure.

    Only thing that I can think of is getting episodes of AoSTH, SatAM and Sonic Underground as high quality as you can and just record the dialogue. There are many lines that Sonic repeats such as "Up, over and gone", "Let's speed, keed", "Gotta juice" or "I'm waaaaaaaiting!" so it might be possible to find one that doesn't have SFX or music included but might be harder for other dialogue.

  10. The way things are going it might be just apathy in general rather than just Sonic, however considering that Sonic games are both inconsistent and vary even between game it can be pretty hard to keep up with the series where it can go from go happy lucky to dark and depressive the next or even in between and people have different tastes, it can be surprising that a community can survive.

    Community wise is feeling apathetic because it knows that the series can do better and can be more fun to play but it isn't there with the current games (Mania aside and not everyone in the Sonic community is into that) and there doesn't seem to be any word to give us confidence over the next mainline game especially on the 3D side. It's also because of this time of year that there isn't an announcement to ease people and judging by the type of year, it is going to be a slow one so more people will feel apathetic and fed up of Sonic until the next game or even beyond that... Episodes of Sonic Mania Adventures are great but not everyone follows the non-game stuff of Sonic. Mario & Sonic Tokyo Olympics is most likely coming but again not many fans follow that game series. The movie also doesn't help either since that is going to get the most attention. Its a case of low morale and at the moment, only the comic fans seem happy but again a sub-section of the community.

    Unlike Heroes, Shadow and 06 where those three games nearly put me off the series altogether if it weren't for the Rush games, Sonic Boom and Forces really did damper any good will that the series had with its turnaround and those two games didn't appeal to me at all by not getting them. Forces isn't completely terrible as at least it is functional but could be done so much better. Do I have any hope for the series? Well... It's not for me to answer that question. I have no interest in Team Sonic Racing even though 10 years ago that would be glimmering with joy but not the same Sumo literally, not the same quality. If a Sonic game appeals to me and turns out to be at least decent, I'll give it a try. Saying that, I was even apathetic over Mania and even had concerns despite turning out to be a good game at the end. As for why I'm still here? Sonic is one of the few things from my childhood that is still going and grew up with it that is pretty impressive for a series that is going to be 30 years old in the next two years. I liked some of the games, cartoons and of course his character design. It's also more of a community thing being here for the past few years even though admittedly Sonic wise not much to talk about. Some might argue Stockholm syndrome though and some fans suffer from it.

    Then again as times change, so does the community. There are still Sonic fans, both of the older kind and of the newer kind. As time marches on some of the older fans either lose touch or move on and because the series is still going it will get new fans to take its place, maybe not as much and might not be as focused but still like the blue hedgehog. Some new Sonic fans would have played Sonic Dash as their first game however most of those wouldn't be here but at more kid focused areas of the Internet. I think a lot of the apathy myself included is just that we are getting tired of the series but not tired enough to completely move on say like the older Sonic fans who were into SatAM as an example. Our childhood is being very stubborn and not letting us go whether its the classics, the Adventure games, the Rush games or the Unleashed-Colours-Generations era as the games that we enjoyed. Mania is like a shot up the arm for the classic fans (and of people who used to be in the series but left having one more go) and is attracting other fans because of the quality of the game. Had Mania not existed, I think a lot more would have moved on.

    Outside of the fanbase is a different story. While it is getting a bit better as he is not considered a joke as much as he used to be, its appeal isn't as strong as it used to be with not much talk these days. The same opinions as us over the movie. Saying that there seems to be more Big the Cat fans these days that definitely wasn't a thing before.

  11. Yeah... It says something when people are still buying the original console rather than the mini just because of the quality of the emulator and the game choice. It might even drop more in price including Europe where the PS1 holds strong memories but on the other hand, the PlayStation TV (consolized Vita) flopped and that is going for a bit now.

    Only good thing about this is that the mini console is hacked, found a way of changing the settings and people have been putting different games on there via an USB stick on the second port. Someone even put thousands of games on the console. People even put a different emulator, well got the frontend RetroArch to boot it and got to use Dual Shock 4s for the analog sticks.

  12. Hmm... Most likely not if you count main games but it is possible for something to come out.

    Can't see another Mania type of game so soon and even if they are they would have to set a team up and planning that right now, CS2 (ex-Sonic Team) is confirmed to be working on Sakura Wars and a new IP so they might be too busy to work on a Modern Sonic game but then again you can't predict Sega sometimes. Actually thinking about it, Sega of America might have set up a new studio since Iizuka has moved there and said new studio might be working on next year's Sonic game but we don't know.

    So that leaves Team Sonic Racing being the multiplatform game, Sonic 2 and most likely Mario & Sonic at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games on the Switch. Then again Sega Sports Japan no longer exist so they probably have different developers working on the game (the 3DS one of the last game had Arzest that is Ohshima's company who works with Nintendo anyway and Spike Chunsoft), actually wasn't it confirmed that Sega/Nintendo still had the license for one more in that series or was it just rumours? It'll be possibly the last game in that series especially since it is their home ground.

    I can see mobile getting something next year from Hardlight. Whether it is movie focused or not we don't know but there's bound to be something from them. Wasn't the last game Sonic Forces: Speed Battle or something?

  13. Realistically unless we know the budget of every single Sonic game and we don't because very rarely gaming companies announce a budget for a game, it is hard to say. It is also harder to say because much of that budget goes into marketing rather than the development of the game.

    From what we guess though Sonic games have been given a lower budget throughout the years just by observing how the mainline games come around. Sonic 1, 2 and 3 were given relevantly high budgets due to the large amount of marketing that those games had. Sega spent more money on marketing than they did developing the games, Masato Nakamura's costs aside for the music and even then Sega dropped him when it became too expensive. While they did do a high budgeted Sonic game, they also did lower budget games as well such as the Master System/handheld platformers and spinoffs as well as ports/emulation that received minimal marketing to balance things out. After 06 and Unleashed even though the last high profile marketed Sonic game was Heroes, things did change. The marketing for every game got less and less to the point where TV ads are no longer a thing and relied on online such as their website, blogs and later on, Twitter, Youtube, etc. Some people online call Sega's marketing non-existent and why many of their less known games failed until much later including the Yakuza series however this was changed more since the rise of social media. The handheld games went from a different experience to reusing the same music and tone as the mainline entries to stop making them even with their Sonic 4 experiment/Sonic Boom that was the closest thing to those.

    After Lost World that already had a lower budget than Colours and Generations due to the art style as well as Nintendo helping them out for the game, Sega restructured so for a while it didn't get much at all apart from some mobile stuff and a very few console spinoffs that were much cheaper to make and easier to get a profit. The failure of Sonic Boom that lost Sega money also didn't help so it took a while for Forces to get greenlit however Mania was probably designed with a lower budget in mind but that might have originally gone over than intended due to its delay. It is most likely that Forces got the higher budget when compared to Mania just on the grounds of voice acting in multiple languages in multiple sessions, having known artists such as Jon Underdown doing the music, the engine as well as the staff while with Mania, the only things that could be considered expensive were the animation, the tribute ad and the rights to use the Masato Nakamura tracks. Oh and making the limited edition. Mania already used an existing but upgraded engine, the reuse of classic zones even though they were redone level design/retouched assets, one of the bonus stages was a scrapped plan on something else that Taxman/Stealth already got working, most of the development was just time working on the game especially with limited almost indie level staff. It was also because of its success and praise that Sega continued the game, touched it up and got a physical release while with Forces because of the game, sales aren't as strong as they hoped and still possible to see new unsold copies or in bundles a year after release desperate to get rid of them.

    There are multiple reasons why Sonic games got a lower budget over the years from the company itself changing hands, restructuring among restructuring, games not getting as successful as they hoped losing them money and that the games are no longer sustainable to do a high budget game. I would consider that Unleashed was a Sonic game that got a high development budget when compared to the other Sonic games of the era due to its lighting engine that required multiple computers to be on over multiple days to calculate and staff at the time were willing to push Sonic into a different direction that backfired on them due to its mixed reaction and not making the money that it needed so much of the staff who worked on the game left even though Sega does have a high staff turnover, more so after the Dreamcast/when Sammy took over. Sega still sees the Sonic series as important but not enough to be their main focus or their only money maker in some cases anymore.

    Also just because something has a high budget doesn't automatically think that they are expensive. Sega considers the Yakuza series to be their highest budget/main focused game due to the use of known actors, branding, emulating the bonus games, marketing (more so in Japan) and even then they recycle and reuse assets between each game such as set in the same area mostly to cut down on costs as well. Before Yakuza 6, the games ran on the same engine as well but games after Yakuza 6 will most likely use the same new engine including Judgement. Probably outside of the classic 3, maybe the two Sonic Adventure games and possibly Unleashed, most Sonic games or even Sega games outside of the AM2/Model 1-3 arcade era/Shenmue 1 and 2 aren't considered AAA games by their budget.

  14. It's a tricky question because some of the worst things that did happen, some people still liked the games because there was either something that appealed to them or just liked a bit of entertainment.

    Anyway the first signs of a decline was the gap between Sonic 3 & Knuckles and Sonic Adventure in terms of a mainline game. Its the old Sega of America vs Sega of Japan conflict that was going off with one side wanted to do that the other side didn't want to do and vice versa. Sega of Japan wanted a clean slate away from the old consoles (apart from the Game Gear in Japan) to focus on the Saturn while Sega of America wanted to keep supporting all the older consoles/addons and even Sega Europe wanted to support the Master System for just a bit longer. It was lucky that the Mega Drive still got games after 1995 despite support was pulling out. So much of the games on the Saturn were new IPs or the latest arcade ports while Sega of America wanted to keep pushing Sonic. They did try to get Sonic X-treme off the ground but with so many issues including a near death of the programmer for that it had to be cancelled and it ended up with an isometric spinoff based on a genre that was well out of date with a quickie port to the Saturn just to get anything as well as a Game Gear platformer that could be considered one of the worst Sonic games of that period. They were desperate to keep going whether its porting CD and 3&K to the PC, having an edutainment spinoff that was rebranded from another game that put Sonic's mug for more sales. Sega of America even brought Sonic's Gameworld out of Japan just so the Pico could get a game. By the time that Yuji Naka was interested in a Sonic game, it was just too late and all that could be managed was a compilation of the 3 main Sonic games excluding CD. No main Sonic game on the Saturn meant that there was about 4 to 5 year gap and interest can easily go during that time, it isn't like now where a game could take 5 years to be made.

    Shadow the Hedgehog, both of his game and his character even though there are people who do like/love Shadow. It started a decline in the series with his inclusion that while might have worked okay in Sonic Adventure 2 due to his story and his focus, future appearances seemed like he was included just because he was popular with no reason why. He was a story focused character and in his next appearance was the opposite as in a gameplay focused game with a minimal story. Then came the idea of a spinoff; let's give Shadow a gun, let's make him swear, introduce aliens oh and give him some censorship because a new rating system was introduced. It was a case of Sega chasing trends where they thought people like edgy games, we give them an edgy game without understanding why because it was the in thing at the time. Interestingly, Shadow got just as bad reviews as 06 but only some people were put off by this move, whether it was because they liked the character enough to play the game or that the game wasn't as broken as 06.

    Then there's 06 and the development hell that the game went through. Yuji Naka left during development, some of the team left to work on Secret Rings and a game that had to be released on Sonic's 15th anniversary during the most busiest period in gaming meant that the results weren't looking good even though it had a really promising trailer to start off with. Plus other development issues including build issues and apparently firing the QA department meant that even in the best of cases, it would have ended up being the same as it is now. The reviews apart from two magazines (that were most likely bribed) ranged from mixed to really negative that most Sonic games didn't manage to get beforehand meant that the reputation in the series was pretty much going. When 06 is still considered a joke in this day and age, it says something about the game even though there are people who do like the game or at least entertained by it.

    This also affected Sonic Unleashed as well. Even though Sonic Unleashed became a cult classic later on with its reception being warmed up, when it originally came out it was better than 06 but still only got mixed reviews and most of the complaints were about the Werehog and the hub levels, some places that didn't like 06 didn't like Unleashed either. There were people recommending the Dimps version of the game despite having more of the thing that reviewers complained about and that was the Werehog just because the reputation of Sonic Team was at its lowest. Also due to the rise of online with young people acting edgy and "adult", it meant that the series was getting mocked due to both 06 and this game as well as Shadow for some. While the game wasn't the worst thing that happened, it took years for the reputation of the series and of the game to improve just because it came out at the wrong time.

  15. 2 hours ago, Red said:

    oooh! I hope the Puyo games get released for the west. This would be the first time they would be localized, right? I really enjoyed Puyo Tetris so I hope we see more support for Puyo in the west.

    As mentioned Puyo Puyo was localised before but its a rare arcade board and a technically unreleased version on the Game Gear but is present in the Japanese cart (Ronald McDonald in the Magical World on the Game Gear was the same).

    Puyo Puyo 2 was also featured in Sega 3D Classics Collection but it is untranslated due to how the game was made (sometimes games can be hard to hack if they are hard coded). I'm assuming if Puyo Puyo 2 comes out outside of Japan for the Sega Ages, it'll be the same. Oh and I think Puyo Puyo 2 was released on the Neo Geo Pocket Color of all systems but it was called Puyo Pop in the West (not to be confused with the GBA one aka Everybody's Puyo Puyo).

  16. It's not officially in MAME so at the moment, it is considered leaked and might affect preserving stuff in the future. At least it is good that the game is preserved even though I can see why Sega cancelled the game with the graphics looking rough at spots and gameplay that isn't clearly explained despite having a tutorial.

    As mentioned in the article, Sonic 3 Blue Sphere theme was actually composed for this game and has a variation that was meant to have a different intro. Not only that but one of the songs (Sound Test 83) was also later used in Chou Kyuukai Miracle Nine as the Final Results theme. So at least we know by the latter that Naofumi Hataya worked on the music and is one of the composers, possibly also Milpo as well who most likely programmed the sound engine too. Probably wanted some of the music to be into good use.

  17. On 11/27/2018 at 5:06 PM, Covskin said:

    ...why? I must be missing something, is it somehow cheaper to have the dodgy PAL versions?


    I don't think there were any extras on those PS1 games, to my knowledge that was more a PS2 era thing (like a new Sphere Grid in FFX and European Extreme difficulty in MGS2).

    Only thing that I can think of is accessibility or laziness from Sony. Many of those 50Hz games they already had on PSN and some are multi-language. Sadly in the case of the PS1 mini; only GTA, Rainbow Six (in French and Italian, woo) and think Oddworld have it, GTA was made in the UK anyway. It might also be licensing because Tekken 3 was published by Sony in Europe as in the case of most Namco games of the PS1-2 era but then again Ridge Racer Type 4 would have used the PAL version too...

    As for extras, not really that many as only Sony and Konami cared about PAL back then as well as European publishers and developers. Sony did it for localisation while Konami did it for higher review scores. If anything its what they cut out rather than what they add in. You were lucky if the game was released at all... The Gran Turismo series got a few like a sound test for GT1 (even though weirdly GT1 was released in Europe before the US) and able to drive Vauxhall cars for GT2. Even Austrailia got a bonus with Need for Speed: High Stakes (known as Road Challenge in Europe) where they got Holden cars as well because I guess EA got that license for that region at the time. The ISS series from Pro 98 onwards might have little improvements but don't know about the PS1 versions. Do know that ISS 2000 on the N64 actually has an extra mode compared to the US version and its quite meaty too because it is the career mode (like Master League in PES games). Oh and Ray Tracers has English voice acting for the PAL version that wasn't there for the US version but there is Japanese voice acting for the Japanese version.

    Some like Driver, Team Buddies and Mission Impossible the PAL versions are the originals and got censorship and/or changes for the US versions. For Mission Impossible, the changes for the US version was due to Sony's policies and they didn't want a "N64 port".

    Sometimes PAL versions got bug fixes that the US and Japanese versions didn't get or got later on. GT2 was actually finished for its European version and took two revisions for the US to catch up. Spyro 3 added a few music tracks, fixed bugs and added extras that again took to the US Greatest Hits version for it to be included, however the latter got further improvements as well. If there's one game that fans do play the PAL version no matter what is Suikoden 2 because the US version was unfinished with some bugs and even its translation was unfinished. Sometimes they were sold as updated versions such as WipEout 3 Special Edition and Kurushi Final where they were PAL only.

    Update: Someone went through one of the files for the PS1 Classic and turns out that they were planning more games for mini. Not only that but there would have been 3 region versions since some have both US and PAL ISOs where the final had one or the other. Yeah, this was rushed out of the door in time for Christmas...
























































    MEGA_MAM_LEGENDS_EU, (Cacpcom strikes again!)











































































    XI_EU, (Devil Dice)


    Source: https://gist.github.com/Manorhos/18f60d6ede99c8acf8235ac618aa16be

    I know Colin McRae, GT1 and the two Tony Hawk's games wouldn't have made it but the others might have been possible.

  18. When people think of Sonic zones, people think of Green Hill. It was a pretty big thing since it was a leap above most platformers of the time due to the graphic design, level design and the music adds to the experience. For Sega it took months to do this zone as a good first impression. It's why there have been Green Hill alikes for a first stage in most Sonic games; many either patterned like Green Hill, called a variation of the name usually with Hill as its name (partial exception is Neo Green Hill, both Aquatic Ruin and the Sonic Advance with the latter is more like Emerald Coast) or have a similar tone like Windmill Isle. It is easier to name Sonic games that don't have a Green Hill style zone.

    With Generations and Mania to a smaller degree it is down to being the type of game while Forces put a spin on the zone. It is getting overused though so maybe have a different first stage then go back to this or an inspired zone to prevent a too much of a good thing happening.

    Chemical Plant is considered a fan favorite in Sonic 2 due to its level design and speed, a camera bug where it made the zone faster than it seems. It is along with Casino Night, one of the zones that people outside of the fanbase remember from the game.

  19. Err... tough to say but most likely no. 

    Sega have done RPGs both in the past and the present however its down to Sonic Team and at the moment with the current management, they wouldn't due to Chronicles put them off for going into that direction. Notice that most of the spinoffs that Sonic has been in for the past 8 years or so have been fast paced to suit Sonic such as racing or platforming with the exception of cameo appearances in puzzle games, Smash Bros and expies. The only hope for Sonic to even get a RPG is either a management change in Sonic Team or Atlus have any interest in doing a SMT or Persona styled Sonic game. From what little we know, they might not even like the series to do something like that.

    If it did happen, it wouldn't have anything to do with what happened last time. The story will be fresh with no connections to the past as in no echidnas or the old American style, the characters are mostly what are already used in the games with perhaps a few new ones that resemble the cast ala Forces, it probably will have familiar areas and probably will be mobile.

    Then there is the question of how to adapt a fast character to a genre that is known to be slow in most cases.

  20. Currently playing Overlord on the 360 for the past 2 weeks and have been really enjoying the game. Surprised too as I thought when I picked it up that it might be okay. It's got a charm to the game, plenty of irony, looks great (for the time when it was made) and just liked the gameplay. If I have to describe the game to a stranger, it's like Zelda mixed with Pikmin if it was made in Europe. It started hard but once that I leveled up and got regenerative armour, it has been more balanced. Still die but not as often. I was also glad that I didn't trigger the Brewery glitch because that would have been a downer but then again did that in almost one go anyway. Even though they aren't related at all but it is giving me a little bit of practise for when I get to play Dark Souls (or Demon's Souls) due to learning about attack patterns and timing as the Overlord. Like there was a boss but all my minions were killed and still managed to beat it.

    Literally right now, on the desert part of the game and know that its getting towards rushed out of the door/running out of time moment where the polish dropped, the area is much smaller, recycling enemies and have a suspicion that there isn't much more to the game. I mean there are 7 bosses in the game and 5 have their own areas, the early ones have been pretty big after all.

  21. Where to begin? Much of the series can be described as a missed opportunity.

    - Sonic Chronicles should have been on a console rather than a handheld, I don't know why Sega chose BioWare to do it on a DS and setting up a B team to work on the game when their strengths were PC and console then closed the studio when EA bought them. It might have not been able to fix the writing but at least it would have fixed many of the problems that the game had. The music being a big issue with only the battle tracks being any good, had it been on a console they wouldn't have got MIDIs off the Internet and poorly converted but rather something else. Back then BioWare was considered having a good reputation and on their peak unlike now where missed opportunities happen quite often. If it had to be done on a DS, Sega should have chosen a more suitable studio to do the game and maybe had a closer eye on the writing.

    - Relating to that, Sonic Boom to stay on the PS4/Xbox One rather than to move it to the Wii U, put it on a console where the engine couldn't cope and released it in the state that the game was. Thinking about it, Sonic didn't get a game there until Sonic Mania/Forces so about nearly 5 years since those consoles launched. While the game still would have had its issues, it wouldn't have been as negatively received. NiGHTS: Journey into Dreams has the same issue to a smaller extent as well moving from one console to another.

    - For many of the games, just having the physics right would have been an improvement, at best making a better game more enjoyable and at worst improve a worse game. It would have made Classic Sonic in Generations and Forces better as well as Sonic 4 to be not as a joke even though for Forces and 4, the physics aren't the only problem with the games.

    - Sonic and the Secret Rings to have an alternative controls options would have massively improved the game since it is considered one of the worst if not the worst controlling Sonic games out there despite much of the game showing its promises otherwise. To be fair though, it wasn't just Sega to blame but rather Nintendo forcing people to use the Wii Remote controls and some developers didn't know about the alternatives. It affected many games including ports from other systems, even using the Nunchuk would have improved many of the games in terms of controls. Notice a year or two after, games were able to use more control options whether it was the Nunchuk, the Classic Controller or the Gamecube controller, why Sonic Unleashed and Colours played better.

  22. While I personally didn't like the game and nearly put me off the series so naturally it is going to sound negative, it does have a lot of issues. It was buggy with the special stages being a big point, it was glitchy so sometimes you died at no fault on your own, the controls especially the PAL versions were awful due to a bug where sometimes you did your homing attack instead of jumping, it had a lot of stop and start level design while you took out the Egg Pawns building up the meter then do your Team Attack to progress making the levels longer than they should. The team based gameplay had its restrictions where you had to switch character just to get through the level without much different paths, probably two or three at most alternative routes that are similar. So Tails can't always fly, Sonic doesn't get much use of his spin attack, Knuckles doesn't even glide and the same can be said for their other team counterparts. What people already mentioned of finishing the game 4 times to complete it all difficulty based.

    When the game does get creative with its designs, it technically lets it down by those bugs and glitches looking outdated compared to its competition. Not due to the engine either because RenderWare was used in a lot of games (with the Burnout games being the highlight on what it can do). The difference between Heroes and 06 is that 06 was so buggy, glitchy and unfinished that it attracts people to the game as a bad game for some reason while with Heroes, it isn't enough to attract people.

    Even when the game came out people complained about the glossy graphics, the obnoxious voice acting [that can be removed on the PC release but not the console versions], the lines that the characters said and compared to the Adventure games their characterisations became more flanderised such as Amy the stalker or too kool for skool Shadow as well as the handling of a certain Sonic rival. The large focus on Sonic's friends started that "Sonic's shitty friends" meme that people latched on to for years.

    The plus points about the game aren't enough to offset the problems that the game has. It's just not fun to play or replay.

    As for its unpopularity... Just because something sold a lot back in the day and got high scores doesn't mean that there are much memories looking back, it's like sports games they play them but don't look back to play them in the future. Sonic Heroes did sell pretty well on all 3 of the consoles and even made it to its budget range on all 3 too. Now there are going to be people who have played it as their first Sonic game (usually its rubbish PS2 port or the Gamecube version) so there are going to have some nostalgia of the game however there aren't enough people willing to say re-buy the game unlike a PC version of Unleashed.

  23. Here's the full list of the games: https://blog.eu.playstation.com/2018/10/29/announcing-playstation-classics-full-line-up-of-20-games/

    First thing to point out, no Crash or Spyro probably due to the remakes and no Symphony of the Night due to the recent PS4 re-release. Secondly there does seem to be stretching the definition of classics for some games such as Rainbow Six (where that was more famous on the PC, even the N64 and Dreamcast versions were more known back then and got average reviews at absolute best back then) and Battle Arena Toshinden where the word tosh describes the game perfectly. Mr Driller and Super Puzzle Fighter II are good puzzle games but a bit more obscure. GTA surprisingly is there but would anyone still play it, even the fans of the series don't? Cool Boarders 2 is your token sports game. Persona is the altered US version of the game so the die hard fans who want to play on that are going to be disappointed. Rayman and Abe's Oddysee are your platformers so even the genre that the PS1 is known for isn't exactly well represented here with Jumping Flash being a different take.

    Well at least Metal Gear Solid and Resident Evil Director's Cut (not the Dual Shock one with the bad soundtrack) are on there.

    Out of the games that were predicted, I don't think any of us got it right... At least it does confirm that the PS1 Classic does use the 60hz versions of the games judging by Intelligent Qube though (in Europe it was known as Kururshi).

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