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SurrealBrain

Weaknesses with Sonic 3 and Knuckles

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I fail to see how Sonic 3 hasn't aged well when after a whooping 20 years it's still considered by most Sonic fans to be the absolute best Sonic game of the whole franchise. You can't hold that standard for that long and not age like fine wine, you really can't.

 

 

I genuinely believe Sonic 3 to be the pinnacle of not only 16 bit gaming, but 2D platforming in general.

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I tl;dr'd the entire thread,but to answer OP's question,yes it did age well.

It's still one of the best games of that era,in all aspects even.Music,Gameplay,Graphics etc,still hold up pretty well and overall seem more impressive than other games from that era.

This is seriously ridiculous,it's like people are starting to let their hatred for the bad/3d Sonic games creep their way into the more acclaimed titles,just like "Was Sonic ever good to begin with?"

I'm pretty sure that,if Sonic games were still great,then nobody would be asking those kind of questions,but the current stigma of "Sonic is shit" is so strong that it's carrying over the time when he was actually good.

 

 

Of course the game did have it's flaws,but most(or maybe all?)of them have nothing to do with "aging bad".

Sure,the barrel is stupid today,2015.

But it was already stupid back in 1994.

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I'll join the club with those who think it has aged very well. :) I still play it from time to time and love it just as much as I did as a kid, twenty years ago.

 

Maybe there's a bit of nostalgia that adds to the positive feelings, but even just on the whole, I think it's a really well built game.

 

... & Knuckles.

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Still the best game(s) in the whole damn series. One of the few games I can go back to that don't make my eyes bleed. No Sonic game has yet to match the level variety, sound, music, and control that 3 and Knuckles dissed out, at least to me anyway.

 

Shoot a lot of Sega Genesis games are still easy on the eyes today and still look damn beautiful.

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This remembered me about an article I read some time ago:

Good Games, Bad Design: Sonic 3 and Sonic & Knuckles

 

It primarily focuses on the bad design choices of the first level of Sonic & Knuckles, but we can see the beginning of tendencies that would plague future games. Among other things, it mentions the overreliance of gimmicks that don't really add much to the gameplay and just servers to slow down and frustrate the player, like that elevators on Mushroom Hill Zone that take forever to operate, or that vines that hold you in place and you have to escape. The article also cites lack of reward for exploring or take a different route, and the different paths for different characters seems forced and there is not an actual reason for a path only to be taken by a certain character.

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Sonic 3, by itself, is still a great game. Its flaws could be perceived at the time just as much as now. The most distinct of them being its weird level progression.

 

I mean, Sonic 1, Sonic 2, Sonic CD and Sonic & Knuckles all give a feeling of going somewhere that Sonic 3 simply hasn't. The tone of the levels doesn't change in any meaningful way, so it feels less redeeming than the other classic games. I can't say for sure, but I think people noticed it at the time too.

 

It is harder to explain than how it is in Sonic 2, there is a very slight sense of something being out of sequence that if it could be fixed it would change how all of the zones feel (just like changing the song order of an album or the scenes in a movie).

^_^

 

I started with Mushroom Valley and then played through the second half of this today and it does really work wonders!  Just as the momentum from Marble Garden to Mushroom Valley to Carnival Night feels very natural and builds upon the atmosphere of the previous zone, Launch Base to Lava Reef holds onto the momentum!  It does feel different knowing the next zone will be a strange volcanic region underground when playing Launch Base, and, similarly in Lava Reef knowing that the Death Egg has just landed there in some ways feels quite different!

 

Angel Island

Hydrocity

Marble Garden

Mushroom Valley

Carnival Night

 

Ice Cap

Launch Base

Lava Reef

Hidden Palace & Sky Sanctuary

Death Egg

 

 

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Someone needs to play some Freedom Planet. Not even joking - that game can give Sonic 3 a serious run for it's money in almost everything you praised it for.

I'd just like to point out that I honestly think Freedom Planet exceeded Sonic 3 in all of those areas, and pretty much every game I've ever played ever in terms of everything. That's not to knock on S3, either, because that game is damn good as well - but I just can't say that it's as good as Freedom Planet and I honestly think anyone reading this should look into that game. It's a fucking masterpiece.

 


 

And I think it has aged very well - how pretty it looks and sounds doesn't matter much to me, as long as I really enjoy playing it. Those things won't take off too much or add on too much. Is it still fun and engaging to play, looking past the technical limitations of the time period it was released in? I get the impression that it is, so I'd say it's aged well.

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The voice acting in S3 is much better than FP, and the script itself didn't make me cringe some hard my face almost collapsed in on itself. Plus the story in S3 wasn't drawn out in cutscenes that dragged on painfully for several minutes. The same can't be said of FP.

Freedom Planet is really good, but to me the level layouts and characters have always felt needlessly convoluted and long, to the point where they stop being fun really, really fast. Even though S3 has huge levels that can then best part of 10 minutes for an experienced player to run through, they have much more coherency. You can see and feel your progress in the level, while in FP it's just a constant rollercoaster ride of slopes and hills that feel almost random.

It just comes off as a Sonic imitation. There's little it does any better, and a lot it does worse. Plus they're different games, and FP makes a considered effort to differentiate itself from Sonic.

 

EDIT: Okay, I just started up my Lilac save file from just after I'd beaten the level 3 boss. I had to sit through 8 minutes and 22 seconds of of 2D sprite-based cutscenes where virtually nothing happened before the next level started. dafuq

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Sonic 3 is absolute 2D platformer perfection. Screw Sonic 2 with its stages that hardly transition, Tails that can't even fly under your control and annoying special stages. Sonic 3 does all of these things so brilliantly that I still don't understand why it's often overlooked. Probably because it didn't sell as much as Sonic 1 and 2, a damn shame too because it's by far the best out of all three. What more can I say?

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The voice acting in S3

Really dude? :rolleyes:

 

 

 

and the script itself didn't make me cringe some hard my face almost collapsed in on itself. Plus the story in S3 wasn't drawn out in cutscenes that dragged in painfully for several minutes. The same can't be said of FP.

Well what can be said of FP is that if you felt the cutscenes are that long, you can skip them. Quite frankly FP's script is a lot less cringeworthy that other voice acted stories Sonic has had - and yeah, I've cringed at some points to feeling they were overacted at times, but I don't think this is a fair aspect to compare when for one S3 practically lacks a script. I mean, the story scale is certainly up for comparison, but the voice acting?

 

Regarding level layouts compared to S3, I think that's where their separate identities come into play, as FP has a lot more focus on exploration and combat while S3 is more into flow and progression. Yes they're different games, and should be noted that FP is more of a hybrid of styles, a combination of Sonic, Megaman, and Gunstar Heroes, so you can't expect it to play fully like one game when it also has strong elements of others games - that negates the "Sonic Imitation" label given things like Carol's wall climbing and the general aggressive combat that you get from a Megaman X and Gunstar Heroes game. That's mainly why I didn't make that comparison with level design, because it's like comparing a 1/3rd of what influenced it and ignoring the other parts that make it up - what you may consider worse in comparison to Sonic is probably because of the other aspects from other games that make it up, so if you're expecting this to feel as a full Sonic game, then you're just setting yourself up for disappointment.

 

That being said, where it does compare is where it pushes other aspects that I've noted, mainly in the variety in characters, power-ups, abilities. Lengthy they may be, the story is much more in-depth (VA notwithstanding) as are the dimensions of the characters, giving you time, place, motivation, and understanding of all that is going on around you. It's the kind of thing that even S3 can't compare given that it FP is much more multipolar and would have a lot more to explain in its setting. I say judge it for how it performs and entertains more than its length, because if this is something that you find grating for its length then it's not hard to just skip it to get to the action. Now some moments could be shortened, but depending one what you shorten telling the story here the same as S3 would sacrifice way too much context and would make the scenes disjointed. The elemental shields are expanded upon, not just protecting you from fire, water, and basic attacks (lighting seems to be split with crystal and flower as far as attracting objects goes), but can guard against spikes. And characters have multiple ways of attacking foes, each ability able to get the job done but has different effects: Lilac is more powerful and mobile, Carol is much flashier, and Milla can create shields, close up beams, and throw objects at foes along with limited flight. Lord knows how Spade and Torque will play.

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Really dude? :rolleyes:

 

Well what can be said of FP is that if you felt the cutscenes are that long, you can skip them. Quite frankly FP's script is a lot less cringeworthy that other voice acted stories Sonic has had - and yeah, I've cringed at some points to feeling they were overacted at times, but I don't think this is a fair aspect to compare when for one S3 practically lacks a script. I mean, the story scale is certainly up for comparison, but the voice acting?

 

what is sarcasm

 

I say judge it for how it performs, because if this is something that you find grating then it's not hard to just skip it,

 

In regards to this and everything else you said, I shouldn't want to skip or ignore parts of the game I dislike. If they were done better in the first place, I'd have no reason to dislike them. The only reason I bought level design into the equation was because it's something I wholly dislike in FP. Regardless of it's inspirations, the end result was, as I said, not fun. It's messy and convoluted. Basically what you're saying are good points about FP and make it better than S3, I'm saying I wholly disagree with. I don't think performs well.

 

Yeah, I know. That doesn't make it any better.

k

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In regards to this and everything else you said, I shouldn't want to skip or ignore parts of the game I dislike.

Why? It's an option, one you can choose to sit through or ignore. And if you dislike it, why sit through it if you have the option to skip it?

Now if you couldn't skip something you dislike, I'd understand. That or if you were analysing its storytelling, which is why I say judge how it performs more than how long it goes. Because otherwise I find it rather counter-intuitive to sit through something you don't like when you have the option of not sitting through it. I'd think that would be something you'd immediately do if you're not interested in it.

 

At any rate, regarding its level design, I just think it's important to note all of its other inspirations and not judge it on just one so as to understand it more, and I think it performs well for what it did. I mean, fair enough if you don't find it fun for your tastes regardless, but you can't call it a Sonic Imitator while ignoring (or being unaware of) influences like Megaman in it is all I'm saying. That's not a fair comparison.

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Why? It's an option, one you can choose to sit through or ignore. And if you dislike it, why sit through it if you have the option to skip it?

To experience that part of the game. You know, that thing I spent my money on. The story is something people talk about a lot when it comes to FP. Surely I'd be doing myself and the game a disservice if I didn't see it first-hand?

You can skip the cutscenes in most games. Does that mean I should disregard them entirely? No, didn't think so. Even if I do, the game fails to captivate me.

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To experience that part of the game. You know, that thing I spent my money on. The story is something people talk about a lot when it comes to FP. Surely I'd be doing myself and the game a disservice if I didn't see it first-hand?

You can skip the cutscenes in most games. Does that mean I should disregard them entirely? No, didn't think so.

No, not entirely, if you're judging them for how they tell their story. But if it's an experience you didn't like, don't care for, and/or would rather not bother with from that point? Yes, I think so.

 

You wouldn't be doing yourself a disservice if you experience that part of the game, found it not to your tastes, and ignored it from that point. You'd be benefiting yourself by putting more towards what you're interested in. That's why it's an option you can choose to do, which is another thing you spent your money on. If I for one didn't like or care for the story, but I loved everything else about the game, I'm going to skip it and not bother unless I'm interested in critiquing it.

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No, not entirely, if you're judging them for how they tell their story. But if it's an experience you didn't like, don't care for, and/or would rather not bother with from that point? Yes, I think so.

 

You wouldn't be doing yourself a disservice if you experience that part of the game, found it not to your tastes, and ignored it from that point. That's why it's an option, which is another thing you spent your money on.

I didn't enjoy that part of the game. I thought it was bad. Therefore, I will skip it from here on out.

I also didn't care too much for the gameplay. Therefore I will skip that too.

Now I just spent my money on an icon on my desktop. It's fairly pretty.

Icon looks good but now the game is too short. 1/10

-

Now, isn't this topic about Sonic 3?

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I didn't enjoy that part of the game. I thought it was bad. Therefore, even though I can skip it from here on out.

I also didn't care too much for the gameplay. Therefore I will skip that too.

Now I just spent my money on an icon on my desktop. It's fairly pretty.

I was mainly just talking about the story. I already got your thoughts on the gameplay, dude.

 

Sorry you wasted your money tho. Can't help you there. At least the icon is pretty, so... *shrugs*

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The main problem with Sonic 3 has remained that it retains the strict adherence to control simplicity of the earlier titles even though the complexity of the game outgrew the point where that was the best option for the gameplay. The most direct comparison that comes to mind of a game that suffered from something similar is actually Other M, but Sonic 3 obviously isn't anywhere near that bad with it.

 

 

 

 

 

Luckily Sonic 3 Complete solves that nicely.

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