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Bowbowis

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About Bowbowis

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    The Knight of the Wind

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    United States
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  1. Headcanon: Special Stages are spatial distortions created by the Chaos Emeralds in response to external stimulus.

    1. A crocodile

      A crocodile

      I happen to think that too. The backstory to Sonic 3 actually doesn't really work without this concept. 

    2. Patticus

      Patticus

      Someone rubbing off on an emerald...

  2. The Mania-verse is so screwed when the Black Arms show up.

  3. Bowbowis

    Regarding dark themes in Sonic

    Being an action-adventure/superhero series some level of violence is written into the franchise's DNA and I do think an over-the-top flashy fighting style of the sort seen in a lot of shounen anime or superhero movies is a good fit for the series' cartooniness and Sonic's own larger than life personality. In a videogame a lot of action which would otherwise be part of choreographed fight sequences is instead made part of the gameplay but I believe action scenes do have their place in cutscenes, as they can help establish characters, give players a preview of a bosses' abilities, and spice up otherwise very talky scenes. The latter of which is especially relevant, as recent Sonic games have made a bad habit of cutscenes which are almost nothing but Sonic monologuing into the camera. To wit, here's a cutscene which makes near perfect use of action, compared to one which could really use some: Sonic really doesn't need sex to sell. While people have brought up Rouge the games don't really go out of their way to shove her in your face the way they would if they were actively trying to titillate the audience. Probably because her design is intended more as an homage to the classic femme fatale archetype than as true fanservice. Related to that, it's important to distinguish "jokes for adults" from "adult jokes". Say for instance Sonic comes across a town with a corrupt mayor who's appearance and mannerisms are a caricature of Richard Nixon. The Nixon parody may go over kid's heads, but it's a very different animal from Sonic insinuating Eggman is "compensating for something". Sadism is really more a character trait where someone enjoys watching other people suffer. Pretty common for villains, regardless the target demographic. It's worth noting that Eggman is emphatically not a sadist but a narcissist. His actions are driven less by a desire to make people suffer than by a desire to make everyone recognize his superiority. This is not to say Eggman can't cause suffering, or that sadism is not a topic the series can handle (Infinite, for instance, is a sadist), it's just not a motivating force for his character. While I'm not a fan of using edgy as a pejorative I agree with the general sentiment. In any work tone should work in service of creating an engaging plot, not the other way around. Darkness for darkness sake (or levity for levtiy's sake) is a recipe for disaster. The reason the dark elements work in SA2 but not Shadow the Hedgehog (despite the Gerald's diary in SA2 being far darker than anything in ShtH in my opinion) is because they serve the plot, characters, and thematic core of the story. Maria is shot and killed, this in turn becomes a driving force for both Gerald, who sets the story's events in motion, and Shadow, who sees to it that things go as Gerald planned. Because we, the audience, can identify with their loss and desire for revenge, our reaction to them is different than it would be if they just wanted to destroy Earth for the hell of it. Instead, Gerald becomes a tragic figure, a man driven mad by grief who wanted to make everyone understand his pain, while Shadow becomes a more sympathetic avenger, seeking extreme retribution out of a misguided sense of justice. Similarly, because Shadow has a clear and understandable rational for his actions Amy's reasoning with him and his ultimate redemption are far more believable, and serve the game's themes of revenge and forgiveness much better than they would if Shadow were taking such extreme actions over a lesser grievance or simple omnicidal mania. ShtH on the other hand falls flat on its face because it just throws in gritty elements for the sake of looking dark, rather than being dark to better serve the narrative. How and why? Please elaborate. Unchecked industrialism is bad? Greed is self-destructive? Turn the other cheek? Teamwork overcomes all? Don't be ruled by your past? Let others help shoulder your burdens? Put the good of society before the whims of the elite? Live life to the fullest? Don't get me wrong, it's nothing groundbreaking, and not all of them were done well, but for an all ages franchise like Sonic simple themes and morals like those seem like pretty solid foundations for a story. Just what are the series' strengths in your mind anyway? This is the second time this month I've seen you use that line but you haven't explained what you mean by it.
  4. SEGA's guide to responding to criticism:

    Spoiler

     

    If something is poorly received / controversial

    (e.g. Adventure gameplay, multiple characters, Shadow, humans, plot, etc.)

    If something is initially received positively

    (e.g. Wisps, Classic Sonic, Green Hill, Pontaff, Solo Sonic, nostalgia pandering, etc.)

    Don’t

    Do

    Don’t

    Do

    Address the criticisms by parsing the subject and attacking the underlying issues, thus eliminating the source of controversy without compromising the value of the core idea, or at least finding a comfortable balance between the benefits and drawbacks.

    Torch it, run, and never look back. Even if the criticism turns out to have been a knee-jerk reaction which later gives way to more nuanced discussion of the idea’s merits or is the result of a particularly vocal group of critics shouting over everyone else.

    Analyze why the idea worked in this instance and use that information to guide your implementation of new ideas in the future.

    Mindlessly slap the well-received idea onto every product you push out from this point forward regardless of whether it really has a place the current product and/or public opinion towards it has since cooled.

     

     

    1. Strickerx5

      Strickerx5

      This is unbelievably accurate.

    2. Candescence

      Candescence

      100% accurate. Sonic Team are the worst.

    3. SenEDDtor Missile

      SenEDDtor Missile

      The fist bump between promotion and absolutely makes it seem like the two are fist bumping each other.

    4. TCB

      TCB

      Can y'all frame this

  5. America is now great again.

    1. Strickerx5

      Strickerx5

      Dear lord that ending

    1. KHCast

      KHCast

      Cue defenders claiming not to like trump but still condemn those having a problem with this instead of holding the trump administration responsible 

  6. What do you know? Some good came out of Metal Gear Survive after all: 

     

  7. What the fuck?

     

    1. KHCast

      KHCast

      Gotta love my city 

  8. Sonic Fans: "Things you absolutely cannot do in a good story..."

    1. Use more than a handful of characters and give each an important part to play in the plot.

    2. Provide meaningful exploration of complex themes and characters in overall lighthearted and/or comedic works.

    3. Include lighthearted and/or cartoony characters/events in dark and/or serious stories and vice versa.

    4. Have installments in a series adopt markedly different tones while still feeling like they belong in same overall universe.

    5. Have a foul-mouthed small mammal working with humans to gun down aliens in quasi-realistic environments then expect the audience to take it seriously and be emotionally invested in said small mammal.

    Marvel: "Hold my beer..."

    1. Indigo Rush

      Indigo Rush

      It's less "this can't happen ever," and moreso "Sonic hasn't done these consistently since it's conception and we don't trust Sonic Team to pull it off well"

       

      And, I mean, they haven't.

    2. Diogenes

      Diogenes

      sure would be nice if people could understand what sonic actually is and where the series' strengths lie rather than constantly trying to beat it into some other shape

    3. Indigo Rush

      Indigo Rush

      Could be worse. At least they have an outlet with Ken Penders' quality work.

    4. KHCast

      KHCast

      1. So basically an infinity war styled plot? Yeah I don’t see that ever happening lol

    5. SenEDDtor Missile

      SenEDDtor Missile

      @Diogenes Sure would be nice if some people didn’t think in such a binary manner and assume that anything outside of their precious Classics and “light hearted” ultra narrow perspective is inherently bad because of the failings of the people in charge of the franchise and not due to the actual concepts themselves, which numerous examples have been given by many people far more intelligent than me that prove hat the concepts can work, but also how this whole binary nonsense fixes nothing except to justify a false dichotomy that shouldn’t need to exist in the first place.

    6. Bowbowis

      Bowbowis

      @Indigo Rush To be fair, being inconsistent is better than being consistently poor. A more Marvel-esque Sonic  may have given us Shadow and '06, but it also has stuff like the Adventures, Storybooks, and post-reboot Archie to its credit. Pointless fluff Sonic's best received outing thus far has been Generations, which has more to do with there not being enough to criticize than there being anything to praise.


      @Diogenes

      Spoiler


       


       

       

      Grade-A sitcom material amirite?

      Seriously though. If you think thirty minutes of bad food puns ala Sonic Colors is a better use of a cartoon hedgehog superhero than, say, jumping out of a helicopter, ripping off a wing flap, using it to surf down the streets of San Francisco, and outrunning a giant semi-truck smashing through the city, I don't know what to tell you.

    7. Strickerx5

      Strickerx5

      Man, I just want a story worth a damn instead of the dry shit we’ve been getting post Black Knight. Whatever form that takes at this point I’ll be fine with.

      All these debates over tone and “what the series is” (which is far past subjective and meaningless) are worthless. In every other piece of good media, it’s the writing that carries it. When this series is getting shown up by both Saturday morning cartoons and more mature themed movies, both sides of the spectrum, these kind of arguements for lighthearted stories vs dark ones just fall in the trash.

      As a side note, I can’t stress enough at how the new comics can be a great guideline to fixing these issues.

      This series doesn’t need to be IW in tone, but it could certainly learn a thing or two about writing from it.

    8. Diogenes

      Diogenes

      ah yes the very serious and meaningful act of jumping out of a helicopter, that is the part of "serious Sonic" i have definitely criticized, not the dull characterizations, severely incongruous elements, and pretensions of seriousness being equated with depth and value.

    9. Bowbowis

      Bowbowis

      @Diogenes Ah yes, of course that's what you meant. It's not like you and others have a history of drawing arbitrary lines on what is or isn't acceptable for the series, frequently with justifications along the lines of "[X] is totally out of place/too dark/fundamentally unworkable in a series about a cartoon animal," despite plentiful examples of similar series featuring [X] with no issue whatsoever. Not only doing it, but doing it to the point that one is forced to conclude the criticisms are based on a myopic view of the classics as being the only correct way to do a Sonic. Even to the point of giving the classics a pass despite explicitly or implicitly having certain elements which later games are then criticized, for such as the existence of humans (despite Eggman having to have come from somewhere,) modern cities (despite Starlight Zone being a thing), introducing a new character in every title (every main game save Generations  has added at least one new character to the roster),  or "edgy" villain designs (when Metal Sonic has just as many "edgy" cliches as the likes of Mephiles or Infinite).

      Of course it was totally unreasonable of me to think that was the sort of thing you were referring to and I was in no way attempting to highlight  your hypocrisy in accusing me of trying to "beat [the series] out of shape" when you have vocally defended its post-2010 transition into a borderline sitcom, despite it having been a straightforward action adventure series since its inception.

      Silly me.

      Now, witness  the epitome of Sonic's "dull characterizations", and "pretensions of seriousness being equated with depth and value".

      Spoiler

       

       

    10. Indigo Rush

      Indigo Rush

      I mean

      Black Knight's story is pretty embarrassing

      Dunno why people point to that as an example of Sonic at his best 

      That said, wouldn't a proper topic be a better place to discuss this, or are we just going to keep half-heartedly riffing on each other in the status updates, bc that's certainly not what they're for 

    11. Diogenes

      Diogenes

      Quote

      Even to the point of giving the classics a pass despite explicitly or implicitly having certain elements which later games are then criticized, for such as the existence of humans (despite Eggman having to have come from somewhere,) modern cities (despite Starlight Zone being a thing),

      shit man have you read any of my posts, ever? because i have never actually complained about either of those things. poorly used and poorly conceived humans/cities, sure, but not their mere existence.

      also satbk's story really isn't good, some bog standard speech about moving on and looking forward is basically exactly what I was talking about, and that's also the scene that laughably crowns sonic as king arthur as if there wasn't enough jerking him off in that era, so.

    12. Indigo Rush

      Indigo Rush

      Oh man I forgot about that ending lmao

    13. Strickerx5

      Strickerx5

      bk's story isn't good by other standards but as far as this series goes, it might as well be shakespeare

      characters are actually relevant throughout the plot, the story is able to take itself seriously while still having comedic moments and general lighthearted affair, and there aren't nearly as many eye-roll moments within it when compared to things like colors. so, you're basic cartoon plot tbh

      im all for something "better" though

    14. Bowbowis

      Bowbowis

      @Diogenes I did not say that you specifically complained about those things. I was merely offering them as examples of things many classic fans bash later games for, despite those very same elements being present in the classics.

      If a character giving a succinct and situationally appropriate explanation of his unique personal philosophy on life and death (remember, the words may be "everything ends, accept it and move on", but in context Sonic, as the hero, is essentially telling Merlina to "it's for the best to let things follow their natural course, even if that means standing by and letting the world burn") is "shallow, dull, and pretentious" then what, in you're eyes, would a deep, interesting, and non-conceited scene look like? Seriously, tell me, because I cannot for the life of me figure it out.

    15. KHCast

      KHCast

      “I did not say that you specifically complained about those things.”

      earlier:

       

      “It's not like you and others have a history of drawing arbitrary lines on what is or isn't acceptable for the series”

      seems like you did specify him 

    16. Indigo Rush

      Indigo Rush

      I like the part where Knuckles attempted suicide.

    17. Bowbowis

      Bowbowis

      @KHCast I stated he was one of several people who criticize things in the modern games yet turn a blind eye to those same things in the classic games. I then listed a few common examples of the kinds of criticisms I was talking about. I didn't mean to imply that Diogenes personally made every one of the complaints listed.

      Sorry if that wan't clear.

       

      @Indigo Rush I liked that bit too. It's really is an excellent illustration of just how seriously Gawain takes the code of chivalry, that he'd rather die than live having failed in his duties to his king. That fanaticism is a solid justification for why he doesn't turn on Arthur despite expressing reservations at the beginning of the game. The emphasis he places on honor and duty strengthen both his parallels to Knuckles, who (in theory) places his duty to the Master Emerald above all else, even his own desires for freedom and adventure, and to the Sir Gawain of legend who once wagered his life, lost, and was full willing to let the victor decapitate him, just because upholding his end of the deal was that important to him. Furthermore it helps set up the main theme of the game's first half: A knight's duty to his kingdom is more important than his duty to his king. The Gawain's behavior clearly shows that Knights of the Round Table have forgotten this, and Sonic reminding them that they have a responsibility to all of Camelot, not just to Arthur, is ultimately what convinces them to join his side and stand against Merlina in the third act.

  9. Just back from Infinity War... 

    We are a long way from that Humvee in Afghanistan.

  10. Fun fact: As of The Last Jedi, Anthony Daniels (C-3PO) is the only actor to have appeared in every main Star Wars film.

    Daniels is also one of only three actors to have reprised his role in all three trilogies, the others being Peter Mayhew (Chewbacca) and Frank Oz (Yoda).

  11. ¡Feliz Cinco de Mayo a todos!

  12. I miss this man so much:

    Spoiler

    Even if he did ruin a joke by using an obviously Caucasian skull.

     

  13. Bowbowis

    The General 'Murican Politics Thread

    I dunno man. I abhor just about everything Pence stands for, especially regarding LGBT rights, but I wouldn't hesitate to put him in the Oval Office if it meant giving Trump the boot. At the very least Pence is a politician, he understands that if he wants to get anything done he needs good PR, which gives us, as the public some influence over him. Unlike Trump, who just does whatever the hell he wants, then retreats into his echo chamber and deludes himself into thinking everyone agrees with him. While Pence may initially be able to ride the support of Trump's cult of personality I doubt he'd be able to hold it together, he's just too mild to get people whipped up into a mindless frenzy like Trump does. He'd also be infinitely better for diplomacy, since he can at least form a coherent sentence and maintain a basic level of decorum, unlike this asshat: Now, I'm not gay or trans, so I don't have the perspective of somebody worrying that a person who openly hates me could become president (though, as an atheist, I'm sure Pence isn't too fond of me either) but, for what it's worth, there's some good news regarding Pence's ant-LGBT stances. Namely, LGBT rights are largely under the aegis of Supreme Court rulings, meaning that, for all intents and purposes, they are written into the Constitution, beyond the reach of the executive and legislative branches. The only way rights granted by a Supreme Court ruling can be revoked is if SCOTUS makes another ruling which reversing the initial decision, which almost never happens. Even with Gorsuch on the bench the principle of stare decisis is so thoroughly ingrained in legal tradition that there's little risk of relevant rulings being overturned. Bottom line though, I trust Pence not to start a nuclear war if Kim Jong Un says he has a tiny penis. Trump, not so much.
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