Jump to content
Awoo.

Can Magnet Shields and Light Speed Dash Coexist?


Tara

Recommended Posts

Recently, I played through the Sonic story of Sonic Adventure DX.  Now, we can all pretty much agree that the game, while possessing some very strong elements, has not aged gracefully since its first inception in 1999.  Not helped, of course, by the numerous glitches and game-breaking bugs in the Steam version.  We're all quick to talk about issues like controls, falling through the floor, physics quirks, and the infamously outdated cutscenes.  One problem that I don't often hear people talk about is the conflicting gameplay elements.  Namely, the magnet shields and the Light Speed Dash.

 

In theory, a shield that attracts rings, which as we all know are essentially your lifeblood in Sonic games, seems like a good idea.  But when it conflicts so heavily with moves like the Light Speed Dash, which are required to progress through the game, it becomes more of a burden than a reward.  The worst part being that it's kind of hard to avoid getting it sometimes.  In the situations SADX often thrusts at you, you really can't take the time to examine what every capsule contains, and sometimes you'll find yourself stumbling into one without even trying.

 

The problem here is that, when a magnet shield is in your possession, your shield will draw rings to you before you can perform the Light Speed Dash on them.  There's no reason something that was clearly meant to aid you should serve as such an obstacle.  In the context of SA1/DX, this really isn't generally a game-ruining problem, but it's still annoying because it makes it more difficult to access the different routes.  In Sonic Adventure 2, however, this can be the difference between life and death.  because there are often large gaps that can only be crossed using the Light Dash.  But just like in SA1, if you have a magnet shield, it will take the rings before you can do it. (And later in the game it gets even worse because the Bounce Bracelet is mapped to the same button as the Light Dash, meaning the game will often think you deliberately want to plummet to your certain death)  The Light Dash also offers the fastest routes in SA2 as well (maybe in SA1, as well, but the amount of time it takes to charge up even with the Rhythm Bracelet probably undermines the shortness of the actual route), so having a magnet shield can outright kill a speed run.  This is also a problem when many of the missions require clearing the stage in a certain amount of time, making it extra important to take the fastest possible route.

 

To my recollection, Colors and Generations do not have magnet shields (though I may be mistaken; haven't played in awhile, and I certainly don't remember ever coming across one).  If they did, though, it really wouldn't be that big of a deal, since the Light Speed Dash is just an extra added ability at best, its benefits mostly outweighed by the boost.  So for the most part, it would appear that magnet shields are unnecessary at best and an absolute detriment to your very goal at worst.

 

But do they have to be?  Is it possible that, with better implementation, the magnet shields and the Light Speed Dash could coexist?  I've thought of the possibility of maybe the Light Speed Dash utilizing something other than Rings, but that has the drawback of not having the immediate benefit of being able to quickly gather what is, again, essentially your lifeblood.  I've also considered the possibility that the polarity of the magnet shield could be reversed with the tap of a button, but maybe that sounds better in theory than in practice?

 

So basically, can the two exist?  If so, how would you implement them?

  • Thumbs Up 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Classic sonic was able to buy a lighting shield in generations but classic doesn't do light speed dash.

Modern sonic was only able to light speed dash through glowing rings. Maybe if they have those glowing rings not be affected by the magnet shield then they could coexist.

Make the important rings not be affected by the magnet and just have the normal rings be pulled in by the magnet.

  • Thumbs Up 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

ShtH had "ghost rings" that overlapped any group of rings that you were intended to light dash. Making it so the light dash ignores magnetized rings and ghost rings were used at any intentional light dash opportunity would solve most of the problem. It would mean you couldn't reliably light dash any arbitrary bunch of rings with a magnet shield, but that's probably not a big deal.

  • Thumbs Up 8
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think the underlying problem with how it's been in the past is that the Light Speed Dash isn't a smart kid and doesn't recognize that the magnet shield is equipped and how that might mess with its accuracy. You have to be pretty close up on a line of rings to activate it, which isn't inherently problematic. It conflicts however when your window of opportunity is always shrinking and growing in and out of the bounds of the Light Speed Dash's visibility area. That puts you in a precarious area of targeting where it comes down to needless timing; either you'll press the button when the game sees you're in range, or the magnetized ring will fuck it all up and you'll pull off another maneuver instead. The solution then, I think, would simply be to allow the Light Speed Dash an extra ability to see what the closest general line of rings are only when the magnet shield is in effect. If rings are getting pulled towards you, even from multiple directions, the game needs to be able to look around and see where the magnetized rings are emanating, determine the closest source to Sonic (which will always be right in front of you, generally), and then pull off the Light Speed Dash on that line of rings.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

If anything, the magnet shields have the most potential for utility in 3D games since rings have an extra axis to exist on, and subsequently gathering a line of them is going to be generally harder than in a 2D game.

  • Thumbs Up 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

ShtH had "ghost rings" that overlapped any group of rings that you were intended to light dash. Making it so the light dash ignores magnetized rings and ghost rings were used at any intentional light dash opportunity would solve most of the problem. It would mean you couldn't reliably light dash any arbitrary bunch of rings with a magnet shield, but that's probably not a big deal.

I think this is probably the easiest and most convenient solution. Just make it so the rings that you have to Light Dash aren't effected by the Magnet shield.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Yeah, the "ghost ring" thing in ShtH helped that problem immensely. But from what I can remember, can't you still do the light speed dash even when you have the electric shield in SA2? It makes it more difficult, but it's definitely still possible, I just think you have to make sure you activate the dash before any rings get attracted to you. 

 

I can't see this being a future problem though, we haven't seen the electric shield in a new game in years. And if so, they'd probably just do the ghost ring thing again. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Yeah, the "ghost ring" thing in ShtH helped that problem immensely. But from what I can remember, can't you still do the light speed dash even when you have the electric shield in SA2? It makes it more difficult, but it's definitely still possible, I just think you have to make sure you activate the dash before any rings get attracted to you.

You can in SA1 too.

  • Thumbs Up 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Yeah, the "ghost ring" thing in ShtH helped that problem immensely. But from what I can remember, can't you still do the light speed dash even when you have the electric shield in SA2? It makes it more difficult, but it's definitely still possible, I just think you have to make sure you activate the dash before any rings get attracted to you. 

 

I can't see this being a future problem though, we haven't seen the electric shield in a new game in years. And if so, they'd probably just do the ghost ring thing again. 

I never said it was impossible, as I've done it plenty of times before.  But it's an unnecessary burden, in my opinion, because of how unpredictable the action button's timing can be, especially when it's mapped to the same button as the Drop Yourself Off in Hell Bracelet.

 

I'd forgotten about the ghost rings in Shadow, and that's a pretty inventive workaround.  I also like Nepenthe's idea, though, because that not only fixes the problem but adds another dimension to the mechanic by essentially giving you more than one direction to go with it.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

^While it is possible to lightspeed dash with the magnet sheild due to a slight delay in the attraction, the fact that they still conflict with each other so much is certainly an oversight.

In some cases you may be forced to deliberately die just because you strayed too close to a ring or hesitated on a lightspeed dash, and that is most definitely not an intended part of the game (and if it was, I'd classify it as false-difficulty).

Ghost-rings or non-magnnetic rings work I guess, but that said, neither lightspeed dash or magnetic shields are particularly needed in a Sonic game and I think the lightspeed dash is particularly unnecisary and can feel a lot like a "Press B to go here" (or even worse, "press B to not die") feature, kind of like how KTEs function.

There are a load of other methods that could be implemented to reach areas you can't simply run or jump to; grind rails, ropes, vines, catapults, cannons, why lightspeed dash?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The difference between the Light Speed Dash and Quick Time Event is that it you relies on your own sense of timing and accurate measurement of space to pull off, as opposed to waiting for a button cue that just happens to appear because you're in that part of the game.  I mean, it still needs to be patched up to be made better, but I don't think simplifying it down to "press B. to not die" is an effective term.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

ShtH had "ghost rings" that overlapped any group of rings that you were intended to light dash. Making it so the light dash ignores magnetized rings and ghost rings were used at any intentional light dash opportunity would solve most of the problem. It would mean you couldn't reliably light dash any arbitrary bunch of rings with a magnet shield, but that's probably not a big deal.

I actually really like the idea of ghost rings, it was useful and doesn't punish you if you screw up the light dash somehow.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

That's such a long OP for such a  relatively trivial matter. It makes me feel kinda nostalgic for the Adventure days, especially considering both the lightning shield and light dash have seen minimal use in Sonic games for years. But whatever, it's a bit of fun and better than another boost topic.

 

People have already said that ShTH handles it with ghost rings that get left behind on specific light dash routes. If you collect a ring in a chain that's intended for light dashing, then it's replaced by a ghost version which can still be used but never collected. Of course, that then implies that the light dash should only be used in specific areas, and makes it a lot less fun. In SA2, it was really invigorating to dash along every trail of rings you could find. '06 and Generations had a different way of going about it - you could only light dash on certain rings and those rings weren't affected by magnetism (cause by boosting in Gens and the Yellow Gem in '06). This is probably even worse, since you can still mess up the light dash and it completely limits the players.

 

The best thing about the light dash is that it can (or should be) useable everywhere. Thinking about it, ghost rings sound like the best possible solution. As rings they'll their functionality after one touch, but could then be continually used as light dash targets as many times as you like. If every ring functioned like this, then what would the problem be?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Blue Blood's solution of "all rings leave behind ghost rings" would be the only way to leave it completely intact but something seems off about the idea.

 

Honestly though I've always found it a SLIGHTLY shallow mechanic.  Mid-air "one chance" light dash opportunities could easily be replaced with a number of other gimmicks that require a single well-timed button press, and the mandatory ones aren't particularly more complex than a quick-time-event at the end of the day.

 

 

I remember years back coming up with an idea of "what if you could push the button again to stop light-dashing but hold onto your momentum" - so a rainbow-shaped line of rings across a pit could either take you to the other side or launch you up into the air if you pushed the button again before getting half-way across.  Admittedly though, this is an idea that would work better in 2D possibly, or at least be easier to understand for the player in 2D.

 

 

 

I guess a more elegant solution could be that all rings have ghost rings but only for a second or two - and those ghost rings are invisible to the player.  Basically allow the player some "mercy time" where even if they push the button after some light dash rings have started moving towards them or been collected, they will sail along as if those rings are still there - but just for a moment.

 

Combine this idea with making the only light dash opportunities mandatory be in parts of the level where there is no chance the player has earned a magnet shield yet, and it'll make the optional ones forgiving, but still "failable" if you are not quick enough.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Technically, yes.  They can co-exist.  But they shouldn't co-exist because the Light Speed Dash is a stupid idea that needs to be taken out back and shot.  

 

Seriously, it's an ability that lets Sonic straight up freakin' fly to any location that has a trail of rings leading to it, which can literally be anywhere.  It completely defeats the point of having characters like Tails, whose main gimmick is being able to fly to out of reach places.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Technically, yes.  They can co-exist.  But they shouldn't co-exist because the Light Speed Dash is a stupid idea that needs to be taken out back and shot.  

 

Seriously, it's an ability that lets Sonic straight up freakin' fly to any location that has a trail of rings leading to it, which can literally be anywhere.  It completely defeats the point of having characters like Tails, whose main gimmick is being able to fly to out of reach places.

  • Thumbs Up 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'm also not sure why we're equating the Light Speed Dash with Tails' flight when- aside from keeping a character in the air- they don't actually work the same. You might as well say Sonic being able to jump muscles in on Tails' flight because it allows him to get higher as well.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

That and I can't really think of many vertical light dash moments. Usually they're about crossing gaps or something when they're mandatory. Tails' flight is much less limited. It's like comparing Knuckles' climbing to the Spike Wisp.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I would imagine if you're only going to apply ghost trails to specific rows of rings then you might as well replace said row of rings with with a grindable rail.

I've always been fond of SA2's approach of letting you use the light speed dash on any line of rings you come across, and I feel like both the magnetic shield and light speed dash can comfortably coexist if the previously mentioned concept is applied properly. If all mandatory paths that require the light speed dash are replaced with rails, then not only do you solve the magnetic shield vs. light speed dash dilemma, but you also add a potential bit of strategy regarding the choice of running through a level with or without a magnetic shield.

If you choose to acquire a magnetic shield then then the obvious downside would be the lack of being able to use the light speed dash anywhere, as any nearby rings would be attracted to you automatically. Of course, said attraction of rings would be considered the upside to this situation. Also, since the main path through a level wouldn't involve having to dash through a path of rings, said level would still be completable without much hassle.

If you choose to ignore a magnetic shield then the upside would not only include being able to use the light speed dash freely, but you could also use it to reach potential shortcuts or side areas that require the light speed dash to access. Obviously the downside would involve the lack of being able to easily attract rings.

So in the end it would really just depend on whether you find collecting rings more important than completing a level quickly, or vice versa.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The problem with having both the Lightning Shield and the Light Speed Dash doesn't really ever come into effect, when the magnetic properties of the shield don't happen fast enough to be a problem while dashing. While you are already dashing through the rings, your movement is barely janked up by the shields pull.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.
×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

You must read and accept our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy to continue using this website. We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue.