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Sonic Mania (August 15th 2017, Christian Whitehead, PS4, Xbox One, PC, Switch) - The New Classic

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So... Given that we (like it or not) are getting some classic levels remade, which zones would you guys like to see? I'm hoping for one per game so considering we already have Green Hill on the Sonic 1 side I'd say:

* Aquatic Ruin

* Oil Ocean

* Quartz Quadrant

* Metallic Madness

* Icecap

* Lava Reef

* Chrome Gadget (because why not?)

* Unused Sanic 2 level thrown in as a new one.

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28 minutes ago, Velvet Reindeer said:

So... Given that we (like it or not) are getting some classic levels remade, which zones would you guys like to see? I'm hoping for one per game so considering we already have Green Hill on the Sonic 1 side I'd say:

* Aquatic Ruin

* Oil Ocean

* Quartz Quadrant

* Metallic Madness

* Icecap

* Lava Reef

* Chrome Gadget (because why not?)

* Unused Sanic 2 level thrown in as a new one.

Sonic 2 : Aquatic Ruins

Sonic CD Stardust speedway

Sonic3 sandopolis

Sonic & Knuckles : launch base 

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1 hour ago, Velvet Reindeer said:

So... Given that we (like it or not) are getting some classic levels remade, which zones would you guys like to see? I'm hoping for one per game so considering we already have Green Hill on the Sonic 1 side I'd say:

Good question! I'm gonna pick multiple levels for some of these, even though I'm expecting there to only be one (or two at most) each in the actual game, so take this list as more "X or Y or Z" and not "X, Y, and Z".

Sonic 1: Star Light, mostly for the music.

Sonic CD: Stardust Speedway, I'd be interested in seeing how they handle that level's gimmick.

Sonic 2: Casino Night, Mystic Cave, or Oil Ocean.

Sonic 3: Pretty much anything, honestly? I think I'd like to see Hydrocity, Icecap, or Launch Base the most, though.

Sonic & Knuckles: Lava Reef / Hidden Palace, it's one of my favourite levels in ether half of Sonic 3. Just like the first half, any of them would be fine, really.

And as for the scrapped levels in Sonic 2, or Taxman's concept for Desert Dazzle that he wanted to add to the CD Remaster, I could see those showing up and/or we could see all-new zones that are clearly inspired by them. I also wouldn't be surprised to see something like the Egg Gauntlet...

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That drop dash mechanic looks amazing, it's a welcome move that I'd like to see in other remasters basically keeps your momentum going even on flat terrain so you never really have to stop moving. I can't see anything wrong with this addition to Sonic's move set. It's basically like the boost from Unleashed, can always keep moving even in 2D no matter the terrain you're on.

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Got a few things to talk about:

Okay, so we know Mania is going to be long and we have at least 3 playable characters. Awesome stuff. In terms of classic game zones I'd like to see remade; whilst I want to see lots of new stages, lets for argument sake say they'll remake two stages from Sonic 1, 2, CD, Sonic 3 and S&K. I assume they won't remake stages from Chaotix, Spinball & 3d Blast because that would be kind of awkward, although I'm all for them re-using some assets from those games (this is a 25th anniversary game after all) as long as there are plenty of new assets. 

I would choose:

Sonic 1: Green Hill (obviously already confirmed) and Starlight zone.

Sonic 2: Aquatic Ruin & Mystic Cave

Sonic CD: Collision Chaos & Stardust Speedway

Sonic 3: Marble Garden & Ice Cap

S&K: Sandopolis & Lava Reef

Most of these stages are widely acknowledged as good levels (apart from Marble Garden, Sandopolis & perhaps Collision Chaos). Ice Cap should have been in Gens, it's very popular. Mystic Cave (dat PIT!) is one of my favorite levels in Sonic 2 and I'd like to see what they could do with it. Aquatic Ruin? Well, we need a (partial) water stage and I've always liked the many complex routes, and how-with a bit of skill you can avoid the water. They could also make the underwater routes less frustrating than it is in Sonic 2. I chose Collision Chaos (over other pinball stages like Casino Night) because it's design could have been slightly better. It's goes without saying Marble Garden & Sandopolis aren't very popular, so let StealthTax work their magic.

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I would be slightly disappointed if Mania is only a digital download title (whereas Project 17 - no doubt - will be a boxed title) although I kind of saw this coming. I wouldn't mind having Mania in my PS4 download library along with Sonic 1 &2.....hint hint hint

I hope Mania has a simple yet well told story. You don't need dialogue to tell a good story, just look at Sonic 3&K. I don't see any need to make it feel like a sequel to 3&K. I mean, come on it's been 22 years. So unless Mania is going to be the start of a new trilogy (don't get any ideas SSMB :P) I feel that continuity isn't as important, although the story should be good regardless; "Eggman tries to take over the world and Sonic, Tails & Knuckles are going to stop him!". Oh and I want brand new creative special stages, chaos emeralds along with Super forms. I want super Tails and his flicky army of death :)

I kind of wanted level transitions between act1 to act2 to like they did in 3&K (where act 1&2 are made to feel part of one giant act), but it doesn't look like this is going to be the case.

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The drop dash looks fun if it's used well. If I can use it to evade enemies, help in boss fights, gain momentum to reach hard-to reach areas then I'm all for it. Much like adding the spindash to Sonic 1 it should help with the game momentum a little bit and feel natural. I bet fans will spam the shit out of it if there is (and I'm betting there will be) a time-trial mode. As long as the drop-dash is fun and creative then I see no problem with it.

I'm not really bummed about the insta-shield not being included. I never really used it in Sonic 3. You will have the elemental shields and I never really trusted the insta-shield to work correctly in Sonic 3 if I'm right near a spiked enemy, for example. The only time I would perhaps use the insta-shield in S3 was against the Carnival Night & Big Arm boss, but I digress....

Speaking of elemental shields, good to see them return, but I'd also like one or two new ones. The homing-attack inspired gold shield from 3d blast would be kind of cool, although perhaps we should try to stay away from a homing attack?

I'm all for a Mega-Drive/Genesis inspired soundtrack, but I want quality music at least on par with Sonic CD's. I'm pretty happy with what we've heard so far.

I know they've shown some boss footage, which is cool, although I was hoping for a brief glimpse of Dr. Eggman.

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Just wanted to talk about something I mentioned in the statuses yesterday:

Quote

When Mania is released the tricky thing will be to not judge it as a fangame. This is an official game released by a professional team of developers. We've seen what StealthTax can do, so we know they are good, but this as an official game and should be treated as if it was a brand new Sonic Team game. We can't just say, "oh well afterall it's just a fangame". This game should be judged fairly.

I think it's a guarantee that some/if not most reviewers will being seeing how Mania stacks up against the likes of 3&K, and might be quite harsh on it as a result. I guess this is to be expected, I mean 2 and 3&K did set the bar high. 

I hope Mania is a critical success and gets the praise it deserves which in-turn makes Sonic Team realise there is a (profitable) future for more 2d games.

 

EDIT:

This is the press release for Mania
 

Quote

"Sonic Mania brings fans back into the 2D world of platform games with nostalgic pixel-style art and core classic gameplay by reimagining iconic Zones and Acts from Sonic The Hedgehog, Sonic The Hedgehog 2, Sonic CD and Sonic The Hedgehog 3 and Knuckles, and adding in completely new Zones with all-new Acts, and bosses into the mix. Developed by SEGA of America and in collaboration with PagodaWest Games along with Christian Whitehead and Simon Thomley, the game will be digitally available for PlayStation® 4, Xbox One and PC in Spring 2017.

“Sonic Mania was born out of our fans’ love of the classic Sonic 2D platform games,” said Takashi Iizuka, Head of Sonic Team. “This type of collaboration is a first for SEGA and we hope everyone will be both surprised and delighted by this title. Sonic Mania has been a passion project for the entire team and we look forward to sharing more details about it later this year.  Having the game actually playable at the event itself tonight was testament to the dedication of the team behind it.”

 

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What do you guys suppose the line "This is where it begins" from the trailer refers to?

That it's the beginning of Sega looking back to find out what made Sonic an icon? The beginning of the 25th anniversary titles? The beginning of a new series of classic titles that look to the past? It's not really very clear.

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48 minutes ago, Tenko said:

What do you guys suppose the line "This is where it begins" from the trailer refers to?

That it's the beginning of Sega looking back to find out what made Sonic an icon? The beginning of the 25th anniversary titles? The beginning of a new series of classic titles that look to the past? It's not really very clear.

I hope it implies every line you said. Sonic Mania feels like something I wouldn't want to end on a single game.

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I've been kind of off the radar for a couple of days, just soaking up the news, but I'd agree that this is an extremely positive and exciting announcement; Mania really does look like a true evolution of the classics, not just recreating them but taking them further.  I'd be more excited if it were on a Nintendo console, but oh well, them's the breaks.  Though I kind of suspect that the release date might be putting them in a tricky position with the NX, and it strikes me as unlikely that the small team working on this game have access to an NX development kit, so it could just be up in the air for now; I would suggest that, while the game may not launch on a Nintendo console, it might reach one further down the line.

A lot of people have mentioned the possibility of a playable Classic Amy, and while I agree that that would be very nice, I think it's probably not likely.  For Sonic, Tails, and Knuckles, you can pull their movesets straight out of the original games, we know exactly what they play like... but Amy doesn't have a classic moveset, and my recollection of her Advance moveset was as something that was distinctly clunky.  They'd probably have to conceive of a full moveset for her from scratch, and that'd probably require a lot of back-and-forth with approvals from Sonic Team, and that's if they even want to add an original playable character to the known classic trio...  I think it's not impossible, but I suspect it won't happen.  (A dead cert for a potential sequel, though, if Mania does well.)

I'd agree that we're probably looking at four or five classic zones, tops; I don't imagine that, in a game where they're advertising new zones as a key feature, they'll want them to be crowded out by classic zones.  That suggests that the number of full zones (i.e., multiple acts and a boss) altogether is potentially double the number of classic zones - so, eight to ten?  I mean, that's pretty big, so I don't know that we can expect more.  It's kind of hard to say just how many "zones" some of the classic games had, as their structure got a bit weird sometimes, but I'd say they never really hit the equivalent of ten full zones, so that's probably the most we can really hope for.  At any rate, I hope the classic levels they pick out are ones which weren't in Generations and which don't cover niches which the original levels already hit - so, for me, Studiopolis kind of takes the "casino level" slot and thus rules out the Casino and Carnival Nights.  Desert Dazzle might be a possibility for CD, though, in that a wholly original level wouldn't be hidebound by the original game's levels' need not to make time travel, and therefore speed, too easy; the original CD levels might require too much redesigning, in other words.

The insta-shield in Sonic 3 is something which I tried to use once, failed, and then never used it again, so yeah.  I'm sure it's very good once you get used to it, but my younger self never really saw any motivation to do so, and I kind of suspect it may have been something a lot of people never really got to grips with.  I've no objection to it being in Mania, but I can see why it might not be top priority.

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I dunno man, when you take Taxman and Headcannon/Stealth's reportoire into account I'd like to think the message is pretty obvious - these two people alone arguably know the genesis engines better than the majority of the current Sega and Sonic Team, and if anyone can dissect the formula and prove there's still life in it, it's them.

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If Sonic CD is being drawn upon then we may see a remixed Metal Sonic boss fight. He does seem to be a popular character to use in the games lately, which I'm totally fine with, he embodies the whole Sonic vs Eggman, nature vs technology/mad robot maker theme.

Interesting it stops at Sonic 3K, I guess this takes place before Sonic 4..or even better, pretends it doesn't exist.

Would love to see some of the lost zone ideas from these titles mixed into the reimagined classic zones. Like how that cave area is mixed in with Green Hill Zone, so for example Wood Zone mixed in with whatever Sonic 2 has to offer. Desert Dazzle used for Sonic CD etc etc.

If this game did get a sequel due to popularity I would love to see Mighty and Ray make a come back, would be a nice nod to Megamix too.

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One thing I'd really like to see in Sonic Mania is a competitive MP mode. Sonic 2's split-screen component is pretty limited in content, and it also has the nasty issues of gameplay lag and stretching the screens to accommodate the split screen...and yet, it's still one of the best MP campaigns a Sonic game has had in most cases. I imagine that if Mania had a superior split-screen setup (and if possible, allow for three/four-player races), had more level content / MP modes, and allowed for players to set up online matches with friends, it could easily over leapfrog over Sonic 2 in the MP department.

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!!  there is a train visible in the lowest level background of Studiopolis , and at least act 1 is taking place with a good amount of sunset left to happen.  : O 

hopefully although the press writeup mentions that whole zones from Genesis games are being brought into this one, that there will be some moments that are bringing in wonderful parts of Game Gear Sonics; especially that one!!  i'm sure the team has at least thought about that with the train and sunset together!

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Since we're getting remade stages anyway, I'd love to revisit Aquatic Ruin, Ice Cap, and Lava Reef.

I've seen some people calling for Stardust Speedway and Casino Night but it looks like Studiopolis is kind of filling that niche. I'd rather explore some other classic tropes.

I wonder what the ratio of original to remade stages will be.

 

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1 minute ago, Spooky Mulder said:

Since we're getting remade stages anyway, I'd love to revisit Aquatic Ruin, Ice Cap, and Lava Reef.

I've seen some people calling for Stardust Speedway and Casino Night but it looks like Studiopolis is kind of filling that niche. I'd rather explore some other classic tropes.

I wonder what the ratio of original to remade stages will be.

Hopefully at least 2:1 for new stages.

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Boy, how long has it been since Tails and Knuckles were playable in a Sonic game?

1 minute ago, Spooky Mulder said:

Since we're getting remade stages anyway, I'd love to revisit Aquatic Ruin, Ice Cap, and Lava Reef.

I've seen some people calling for Stardust Speedway and Casino Night but it looks like Studiopolis is kind of filling that niche. I'd rather explore some other classic tropes.

I wonder what the ratio of original to remade stages will be.

 

Yeah Studiopolis has elements of most City and Casino/Carnival related stages we've seen in the Genesis era + a lot of new stuff, so I'm not expecting something similar.

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