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PerfectChaos

How to make the main game last longer?

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Ranking systems. What the fuck happened to these? There's something seriously wrong when it's easily possible to S rank over half of the levels in the game on your first try. Again I have to turn to SA2 as the most stellar example of how rankings should work. Remember how you kept getting E ranks when you first started out? That made you feel like shit, didn't it? There's your first incentive to play levels a second time - even if it's not perfection you're gunning for, you just don't want to get the lowest rank on most levels and just leave it at that.

The second is the actual methodology behind achieving a higher rank. Yeah sure, you could usually depend on a fast time getting you most of the way there anyway, but I found SA2 special in that it rewarded you for flair in the process. It didn't always quite work, and sometimes it just felt like you were jumping through hoops (and in the case of Pyramid Cave, that applies quite literally), but when it was done right your reward for mastering a level wasn't just getting through it in double-quick time, it was also to look like an absolute badass in the process. If it were up to me I'd go one further and apply the same mentality behind Red Rings to it - that being, using the same context-sensitive stunting explicitly in hidden and optimal paths, and give accumulating rewards for finding all of them. Better than some boring pickup if you ask me.

That said, give me more than one playable character and the option to do full game playthroughs completely seperate from each other, and I'd be content with just that much. It's amazing how something as simple as replaying the entire game in a slightly different light can fail to feel like a chore when you do it properly, to say nothing of the fact it would easily double/triple/quadruple/whatever the replay value of the game in the process.

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The gameplay and replayability is what matters.

Take Sonic CD fior example. If your looking for a quick threal then just run through the levels and complete the game and get the bad ending (how sad). Doesn't take long, less than an hour?

If you want longer gameplay, with replayability and speed all in inclusive then play the game properly, time travel and get the good ending. This way you get plenty of hours of satisfaction and value of money and it's FUN.

Yes.

In other words, it's not really about the amount of content.

But rather the quality of the content.

Though I personally don't find myself re-playing CD all that much due to it's overall spratic levels.

S3&K is more re-playable imo.

Edited by -Big the Cat-

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The thing about ranks and collectables is they don't prevent the player from continuing though. 9/10 players aren't going to go back and do stuff like that until after the final boss. 9/10 players are also going to get annoyed when you can't access the next zone until you've collected this many things or got this average rank on the levels so far.

The real question here is "aside from just making more base content... how can we block/slow the player's progress to the end of the story portion of the game in a way that is fun for as many players as possible and does not resort to gameplay too alternative from the norm being mandatory?"

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Just force at least one other character's story (Shadow) on us, in order to unlock the final story. As long as the other character gets a few new levels, cutscenes and different perspective then it wouldn't feel crappy/pointless.

This would effectively double the main game length.

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I all agree on another character being playable. I'm probably going to be notorious for saying it all the time one day, but I want Knuckles back. (And Tails, but he's at least in Sonic 4 II.)

Shadow? I don't really see the point. I mean, he usually plays almost exactly like Sonic with hovershoes. Okay, he's kinda cool, but he offers little variations to gameplay from Sonic's. He has homing attack, lightdash and his stages play very similar to Sonic stages. A few people would probably scream 'yay, Shadow', but I don't think the game would gain very much from giving Shadow stages.

Other characters, to add to the replay value, would have to play differently from Sonic, not too much of course (sitting next to a pool as BIg didn't really add any replay value to SA1's stages), but enough to make it fun playing as them for a change. In SA1 and 2 other characters' gameplay is mostly a variation on Sonic's gameplay. Knuckles can glide, climb and dig, Tails can fly, Amy has the hammer to smash stuff etc. The Advance games use the same principle. The characters even get to play through the same stages, but due to their different skills and gameplay style they can access different areas and just play differently. I think that's actually fun. Have a normal stage for Sonic, but with the chance to go through it as other characters. You know, a little like the principle the Sonic Riders games used, too. There you have different skill types that allow you to use different paths through a level. That could also work for a normal Sonic game. The stage is basically the same, but depending on which character you pick your gameplay is different and other paths become open to you.

To Diogenes' 'remove the boost'... Well, I actually like the boost. But I agree it's overused a little. While this game had many weird ideas, I think Sonic 06 came up with not bad a concept for it: they had the slower paced parts of Sonic's stages that played somewhat like the Adventure games, with 3D platforming, attacking enemies, exploring and so on, and then they had the speed sections. Although I think the exectution could have been a lot better, the idea of having one part of the stage designed to go through insanely fast isn't so bad. It's fun to go fast and see everything blaze by. But maybe it could be limited to one or a few parts of the stage in which the boost becomes available to use, and outside of these boost areas you don't have it.

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I'm sorry, but you guys can't tell me you need a gigantic budget to make a game longer than 4 hours oO

Seriously, we need more acts, more worlds, maybe people will buy the games more often if they dont need to pay 40 bucks for 4 hours of gameplay.

Edited by Thigolf

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Shadow? I don't really see the point. I mean, he usually plays almost exactly like Sonic with hovershoes. Okay, he's kinda cool, but he offers little variations to gameplay from Sonic's. He has homing attack, lightdash and his stages play very similar to Sonic stages. A few people would probably scream 'yay, Shadow', but I don't think the game would gain very much from giving Shadow stages.

Why exclude Shadow from being playable on the basis of him being too similar to Sonic if you aren't going to significantly differentiate the rest of the cast from Sonic anyway? Besides, Shadow has his own unique quirks: Chaos Control, Chaos Spear, hovering abilities with his shoes, and an affinity for vehicles. All of these could be used to differentiate him from Sonic enough to warrant his existence in any game.

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I'm sorry, but you guys can't tell me you need a gigantic budget to make a game longer than 4 hours oO

Seriously, we need more acts, more worlds, maybe people will buy the games more often if they dont need to pay 40 bucks for 4 hours of gameplay.

You do with Sonic. Think about how vast the levels are, and how you are always moving forward. With say, an FPS or action adventure it's perfectly acceptable to put a lot of effort into an area and have the player spend 5-10 minutes there fighting an enemy or solving a puzzle. That doesn't happen in Sonic.

If they want to keep the level of detail and fictional spectacle the series has become known for, they need more money to make more content.

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Couldn't they just shorten the current levels, and add more? I mean Unleashed is a hell of a lot longer than Colors or Generations with or without the Werehog.

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I kinda liked Adventure's more Mario-based approach to level design, in that there was a relative hodgepodge of things to do in a stage depending upon the design of the level and the story. I wouldn't complain about entering another pinball machine to earn enough cash to buy something, or make my way through a theme park's various attractions in order to find someone, or getting ejected from a precarious tornado onto an linear path made for freely blasting through the sky, or having to work my way through a flying fortress to destroy it at key points. Kart racing, snow boarding, plane flying, mirror puzzles, underwater navigation: this is the stuff of fun and involving adventure platformers and can help greatly in increasing the length, and you wouldn't have to do anything significant with the current gameplay to get that back aside from working on that annoying jumping mechanic.

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I'm sorry, but you guys can't tell me you need a gigantic budget to make a game longer than 4 hours oO

Seriously, we need more acts, more worlds, maybe people will buy the games more often if they dont need to pay 40 bucks for 4 hours of gameplay.

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I don't see why the only three rational choices are "broke as fuck," "lazy as fuck," or "stupid as fuck" when it's very possible, and probably more likely given how much things like length get ironed out during the pre-production of entertainment, that Sonic Team intentionally designs the games this way from the outset and that money and competency are not inhibiting them.

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I don't see why the only three rational choices are "broke as fuck," "lazy as fuck," or "stupid as fuck" when it's very possible, and probably more likely given how much things like length get ironed out during the pre-production of entertainment, that Sonic Team intentionally designs the games this way from the outset and that money and competency are not inhibiting them.

Then they might wanna reprice their games then, full retail for a 2-3 hour experience doesn't really seem worth it, or go digital.

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I don't see why the only three rational choices are "broke as fuck," "lazy as fuck," or "stupid as fuck" when it's very possible, and probably more likely given how much things like length get ironed out during the pre-production of entertainment, that Sonic Team intentionally designs the games this way from the outset and that money and competency are not inhibiting them.

So they've been deliberately avoiding having more Modern Stages, in favour of slower filler content levels (Werehog? Classic?) Does it not strike you as odd that there hasn't been a single Modern Sonic-only game yet? They don't have the time and money for it. This probably also ties in to the supposed 'reboot' - they've got nowhere else to run. They've already played their ace card (Classic Sonic)

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The game feels short once they start taking out playable characters, mini-games, lenghty cutscenes, actual hud worlds with missions, all of that pads the game out and help adds lenght to the game but most people seem to complain about that in pervious 3D Sonic games. :\ Take all or most of that away and you get a short game that you can complete in 4 or 6 hours.

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Then they might wanna reprice their games then, full retail for a 2-3 hour experience doesn't really seem worth it, or go digital.

If you paid $60 for either Colors or Generations then you got ripped off because neither were ever full retail in the first place. xP

Does it not strike you as odd that there hasn't been a single Modern Sonic-only game yet?

Sonic Colors???

But to be less blunt, no it doesn't strike me as odd. These games do not exist in these creative vaccums where the only reason conceivable to add anything in a game that might not be the purest form of that title's gameplay is to pad out the length. Sonic Unleashed and Sonic Generations were determined from the outset of pre-production to include their alternate gameplay types for design and thematic reasons. As such, these things are woven into the very fabric of these games' identity, and to take them out would destroy the way these games feel and function which doesn't speak volumes about the idea that these things were added only for length's sake. You add Chao Gardens, Emblems and medals, Mario Party multiplayer, and sometimes even Chaos Emeralds to pad out a game's length; not a complete other half of major gameplay content.

Another thing that speaks volumes about the holes in this idea is the fact that adding Classic Sonic to Generations did not even significantly increase the game's length beyond Colors' in the first place.

Edited by Nepenthe

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The game feels short once they start taking out playable characters, mini-games, lenghty cutscenes, actual hud worlds with missions, all of that pads the game out and help adds lenght to the game but most people seem to complain about that in pervious 3D Sonic games. :\ Take all or most of that away and you get a short game that you can complete in 4 or 6 hours.

There's a difference between wanting stuff out and wanting stuff replaced with something more fun.

Edited by JezMM

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If you paid $60 for either Colors or Generations then you got ripped off because neither were ever full retail in the first place. xP

Average retail for games is between $40-$60, I paid $50 for both, I feel jipped.

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Average retail for games is between $40-$60, I paid $50 for both, I feel jipped.

But average retail is not full retail. Full retail for standard edition console games is $60. You may feel like you overpaid for both games, and I sympathize, but you still didn't pay full retail at only $50.

Okay, which one is worse: Paying full retail price for a bad or mediocre game that is long or paying full retail price for a good or decent game that is short?

I paid full retail for Unleashed- the "bad" game of the modern lot- and feel I got my money's worth. I paid less for Colors and Generations- the more focused and technically sound games- and still felt underwhelmed with both in terms of their cost.

This common hypothetical is a false equivalency and thus everyone should stop using it to try and make a point.

Edited by Nepenthe

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If you paid $60 for either Colors or Generations then you got ripped off because neither were ever full retail in the first place. xP

Sonic Colors???

...

Another thing that speaks volumes about the holes in this idea is the fact that adding Classic Sonic to Generations did not even significantly increase the game's length beyond Colors' in the first place.

I meant a 3D Modern Sonic only game.And Classic Sonic may not have lengthened the game that much, but it must have been MUCH more cost effective and overall easier to produce.

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I meant a 3D Modern Sonic only game.And Classic Sonic may not have lengthened the game that much, but it must have been MUCH more cost effective and overall easier to produce.

Again, Sonic Colors is a 3D modern Sonic-only game.

And how would it be more cost effective to tack on another gameplay style- which again includes a new model, different animations, different physics, maneuvers, and collision systems, new levels, new music, and the cutscenes and writing to compensate- than to simply build an entire game in either one of the styles?

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This common hypothetical is a false equivalency and thus everyone should stop using it to try and make a point.

I'm not trying to make a point. I'm just wondering what people opinion is. :P I thought Unleashed is decent. Colors and Generations are short but I've felt that I got my money worth cause I still go back to play them even when some people here found them to be underwhelming.

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I'm not trying to make a point. I'm just wondering what people opinion is. tongue.png I thought Unleashed is decent. Colors and Generations are short but I've felt that I got my money worth cause I still go back to play them even when some people here found them to be underwhelming.

My apologies for assuming then. This question is just often toted around often to simply deride the longer Sonic games, as well as people's general concern for a game's length, when ultimately this kind of cost-benefit analysis can be very personal, depending upon the type of experience you got from the game in question. Paying less or even full for what someone else considers a "better" game that happens to be short doesn't mean everyone should be perfectly happy with it regardless.

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I'm kind of glad I didn't pay $60 when Unleashed came out, because then I really would have felt cheated, that game is not worth $60, not everything wrong with it anyway, at most $30 is good. $40 for Generations so I don't feel completely bad, bit I still feel like it should have been more for that price.

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