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So are Sonic Colors and Sonic Generations not considered good games now?

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4 hours ago, Plasme said:

Sonic Generations is an excellent game but has received some criticism over the years because of how it dated and what it came to represent.

Can I just make it clear that the criticism that Generations receives now isn't retrospective as you suggest it is. Common criticisms towards Generations that go back to 2011 concern the following:

1) Its overuse of 2D, as it makes up a sizeable chunk of the supposedly 3D Modern gameplay. Whilst it was more welcomed in Unleashed and Colours, with Generations already having an entirely 2D focused Classic Sonic campaign, the inclusion of 2D segments in Modern Sonic's level drew ire right away.

2) The story was disappointing. It can be brushed aside, but people were largely disappointed by the lack of any real narrative in the game. Nothing really happened over the course of the story.

3) Classic Sonic never felt right. The gameplay was enjoyable to most, but almost everyone seemed to be in agreement that Classic Sonic was far from as good as Modern Sonic and generally controlled very stiffl, with level design that often had more in common with S4 thab the Classics. Modern Sonic felt like more of the same. Whether you liked the gameplay style or not (and there was a lot of vocal support for the boost gameplay back then), it didn't really set itself apart from Unleashed and Colours.

4) It was short. Incredibly short even, with all of the side content being relegated to the optional missions that weren't fun at all. As @Tara says in her post above, it's compact and does does the bare minimum. The game lacks depth and scope, and what it focuses on feels very limited. Bad? No. Underwhelming? Yes. For example, the game's focus is on being one big nostalgia trip, but it misses out so much of the series' history. 9 levels, 3 bosses and 3 rivals to represent the entire series is just not enough, or was at least not managed that well. And for another example, see my remarks remarks about gameplay. Neither the gameplay nor the content really excels.

There's an element of Generations being tarnished by the years that followed, as you say. In my honest opinion, Generations was never that good to begin with; it was merely "fairly decent" and always will be. But it was also the best 3D Sonic game to come along since of the Adventure series a full ten years earlier, so it garnered a lot of praise simply because it wasn't absolute garbage. It unfortunately represented a relatively low high-point for the series before it fell off the deep end again with Boom, Lost World and Forces. Generations and Colours very much felt like the series starting to pick itself up, and the ball was dropped only a few feet off the ground. You can't help but look at Generations a bit bleakly if it's supposed to be as good as Sonic gets. Generations was never free from criticism though and it's not revisionist. 

I've never heard criticisms about overused returning stages or general nostalgia pandering and Classic Sonic's presence applied to Generations. It's true that Generations set or perpetrated many of the issues that currently plague the series, but they don't apply to it. 

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Good but heavily flawed is probably the most accurate description to be honest. No game can ever be perfect, but I feel these games miss the mark a bit too much to the point where the good barely outweighs the flaws.

And when those flaws started to become way more apparent in the later entries without much improvement to balance them out, you get things like Forces which is a shadow of what Generations is. 

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2 hours ago, Blue Blood said:

Can I just make it clear that the criticism that Generations receives now isn't retrospective as you suggest it is. Common criticisms towards Generations that go back to 2011 concern the following:

1) Its overuse of 2D, as it makes up a sizeable chunk of the supposedly 3D Modern gameplay. Whilst it was more welcomed in Unleashed and Colours, with Generations already having an entirely 2D focused Classic Sonic campaign, the inclusion of 2D segments in Modern Sonic's level drew ire right away.

2) The story was disappointing. It can be brushed aside, but people were largely disappointed by the lack of any real narrative in the game. Nothing really happened over the course of the story.

3) Classic Sonic never felt right. The gameplay was enjoyable to most, but almost everyone seemed to be in agreement that Classic Sonic was far from as good as Modern Sonic and generally controlled very stiffl, with level design that often had more in common with S4 thab the Classics. Modern Sonic felt like more of the same. Whether you liked the gameplay style or not (and there was a lot of vocal support for the boost gameplay back then), it didn't really set itself apart from Unleashed and Colours.

4) It was short. Incredibly short even, with all of the side content being relegated to the optional missions that weren't fun at all. As @Tara says in her post above, it's compact and does does the bare minimum. The game lacks depth and scope, and what it focuses on feels very limited. Bad? No. Underwhelming? Yes. For example, the game's focus is on being one big nostalgia trip, but it misses out so much of the series' history. 9 levels, 3 bosses and 3 rivals to represent the entire series is just not enough, or was at least not managed that well. And for another example, see my remarks remarks about gameplay. Neither the gameplay nor the content really excels.

There's an element of Generations being tarnished by the years that followed, as you say. In my honest opinion, Generations was never that good to begin with; it was merely "fairly decent" and always will be. But it was also the best 3D Sonic game to come along since of the Adventure series a full ten years earlier, so it garnered a lot of praise simply because it wasn't absolute garbage. It unfortunately represented a relatively low high-point for the series before it fell off the deep end again with Boom, Lost World and Forces. Generations and Colours very much felt like the series starting to pick itself up, and the ball was dropped only a few feet off the ground. You can't help but look at Generations a bit bleakly if it's supposed to be as good as Sonic gets. Generations was never free from criticism though and it's not revisionist. 

Forces in particular feels like the series trying to pick itself back up, but it's too little, too late. Multiple playable characters and a more serious story were asked for a while, and yet the level design degenerated.

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It's hard to speak about how the general sentiment toward the game changed but I recall debates about these games quality being the same back when I first joined as they are now. It wouldn't even be hard to go back and look at older threads on this exact topic if one were curious. We've been talking about this for almost 10 years

The only thing that I can say changed for sure is my perspective. I used to like Colors and Generations more than most Sonic games but now the opposite is the case. Nothing really grabs me about them thematically, artistically or mechanically. There's not much they do that other games, Sonic or otherwise, don't do better. Sonic Generations is intentionally hamstrung by drawing direct comparisons to better games. At least Mania backs itself up by just straight up being better than the older games it references. Generations can only make this claim for the worst of the bunch.

I've seen some suggest Colors is the better game due to it's originality and while it's nice to have at least one completely original setting this decade it's still a fairly basic and creatively bankrupt game mechanically. That doesn't mean it can't be fun, but it starts to set in how shallow it all is before it's short runtime is even over. It's blocky platforming and basic puzzle solving brings to mind other games with controls more suited to them even if it's never really bad. 

I can accept a deemphasis on story but this has become an excuse for poor storytelling. Sonic Colors isn't just a lighter or simpler plot, it's a plot that doesn't really go anywhere and betrays it's own stakes and characters. No matter how tone deaf story elements of previous Sonic games are you can't let that get in the way of the mechanics of the story: We used to have some kind of point or emotional payoff to things. Characters used to grow or change. Tangible consequences including death used to come up. I was under the impression that the tone deaf aesthetic, convoluted plotting and poor dialogue was getting in the way of these mechanics and thats why they needed to go. What was the point of removing the character work too? Lost World and Forces have a lot of carry over from these games but they actually do start trying shit with the characters again, so that's one thing they have over these.

It's hard to say exactly how the mainstream feels about the games but I feel like the fact that they're barely brought up at all says enough. I wouldn't go as far as to say that means people started hating them. They just didn't make the cultural splash Sonic fans were hoping they would when those review scores first rolled in.

To me, that's fair since it wouldn't have been earned.

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When these games came out, the series' reputation was pretty low, to the point where Sonic was basically a large meme of mockery. 

So the fact that it actually released a game that had very little in the way of a forced gimmick, or at least a gimmick that wasn't as obtrusive as the Werehog, it was seen as some sort of revolution or renaissance, which made people gloss over the fact that the game didn't really have much to offer in the end.

 

I don't think people hate them, so much that the magic has worn off and people have moved on. The ones saying the game is trash and whatever are mostly Adventure fans who hate everything about these games since it was the point when the series distanced itself from the Adventure era and how, those games were heavily mocked when these came out. Like for real, between Game Grumps and Projared, the collective community actively turned on the Adventure games as "archaic". 

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4 hours ago, Wraith said:

I can accept a deemphasis on story but this has become an excuse for poor storytelling. Sonic Colors isn't just a lighter or simpler plot, it's a plot that doesn't really go anywhere and betrays it's own stakes and characters. No matter how tone deaf story elements of previous Sonic games are you can't let that get in the way of the mechanics of the story: We used to have some kind of point or emotional payoff to things. Characters used to grow or change. Tangible consequences including death used to come up.

The point is that if you remove all the bad jokes and poor writing, the plot of Sonic Colors is not much different than the plot of Sonic 1, which I think is allright. Replace little animals with wisps, and those planets with South island.

Sonic becomes more serious in the cutscene when he and Tails discover the Nega Wisps factory, and when they fear Yacker fell into that factory as well.

There's a bit of emotional moment too when Sonic puts Tails into the elevator against his will to keep him safe. It's not much, but it's still impactful enough, and lets you understand how much Sonic takes care of Tails like a brother and doesn't want him to get hurt.

Generations instead is just about a chili dog and... Sonic friends repeating "homing shot" obsessively. Time Eater is just the mandatory final boss but there's little to no story around it, it just exists and the only major event in the story is the plot twist that it's not a monster but an Eggman robot; that's it.

I somewhat feel like Lost World and Forces' stories are also weaker than Colors', despite their attempts at being more complex, because I think that Colors' problem is not the story itself but the scripting and the amount of unnecessary filler cutscenes. Lost World has Tails completely out of character, a lot of main plot elements unexplained and left open, and Amy and Knuckles completely useless, so much that they are annoying and feel shoehorned; Forces' story is very childish, it faces thematics such as "I'm stronger than you" and "Friends are good" and the story is full of holes.

Between Forces and Lost World, I think that Lost World is definitely the game with the better story, but I still prefer Colors despite the bad humor.

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10 minutes ago, Iko said:

The point is that if you remove all the bad jokes and poor writing, the plot of Sonic Colors is not much different than the plot of Sonic 1, which I think is allright. Replace little animals with wisps, and those planets with South island.

Nobody likes Sonic 1 for the plot so I don't see how this is a good thing.

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1 hour ago, Iko said:

The point is that if you remove all the bad jokes and poor writing, the plot of Sonic Colors is not much different than the plot of Sonic 1, which I think is allright. Replace little animals with wisps, and those planets with South island.

Sonic becomes more serious in the cutscene when he and Tails discover the Nega Wisps factory, and when they fear Yacker fell into that factory as well.

There's a bit of emotional moment too when Sonic puts Tails into the elevator against his will to keep him safe. It's not much, but it's still impactful enough, and lets you understand how much Sonic takes care of Tails like a brother and doesn't want him to get hurt.

Generations instead is just about a chili dog and... Sonic friends repeating "homing shot" obsessively. Time Eater is just the mandatory final boss but there's little to no story around it, it just exists and the only major event in the story is the plot twist that it's not a monster but an Eggman robot; that's it.

I somewhat feel like Lost World and Forces' stories are also weaker than Colors', despite their attempts at being more complex, because I think that Colors' problem is not the story itself but the scripting and the amount of unnecessary filler cutscenes. Lost World has Tails completely out of character, a lot of main plot elements unexplained and left open, and Amy and Knuckles completely useless, so much that they are annoying and feel shoehorned; Forces' story is very childish, it faces thematics such as "I'm stronger than you" and "Friends are good" and the story is full of holes.

Between Forces and Lost World, I think that Lost World is definitely the game with the better story, but I still prefer Colors despite the bad humor.

"Its not that bad if you remove the bad parts" isn't a good defense. If you don't mind the game's flaws, fine but you haven't really addressed the issues given about the game's structure or overall storytelling. A good moment or two does not make a story well written. 

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1 hour ago, Wraith said:

Nobody likes Sonic 1 for the plot so I don't see how this is a good thing.

To be fair nobody hates Sonic 1's story either. Not every Sonic game must have an Adventure-like story.

5 minutes ago, Kuzu said:

"Its not that bad if you remove the bad parts" isn't a good defense. If you don't mind the game's flaws, fine but you haven't really addressed the issues given about the game's structure or overall storytelling. A good moment or two does not make a story well written. 

The story itself is simple but solid, the problem is the scripting.

Nobody is saying it's well written, but at least it makes sense, unlike Generations or Forces'. The only hole in Colors' story is that beam that went on the moon, that was obviously something they were planning for an eventual sequel and never got revisited.

I mean, you can retell Sonic Colors' story without the jokes, and it would be a decent story. You can't retell the story of the other pontaff games without them still being flawed, unless you rewrite the plotholes and the out of character stuff. The closest thing to being decent is Lost World, but it's still missing a lot of bassic stuff such as, what the heck is a Lost Hex and why does Tails know about it. Unless you write extra parts of the story from scratch to explain the missing part of the plot, the story will still be flawed.

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6 minutes ago, Iko said:

The closest thing to being decent is Lost World, but it's still missing a lot of bassic stuff such as, what the heck is a Lost Hex and why does Tails know about it.

I still don't get why people get hung up on these sort of things. What Lost Hex is and why Tails knows about it don't matter to the game's story; it's just a strange new land to justify strange new things. They could've written up a bunch of backstory about it but unless they also wrote some plot beats that tie back to that backstory it's just fluff.

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They introduced The Lost Hex just like they did Little Planet and Angel Island in 90s. Similar levels of non-description apply to most of the new worlds and societies they introduced across the entire series. It's a series wide problem at worst and it's one that's never really bothered me personally.
 

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23 minutes ago, Iko said:

 

Nobody is saying it's well written, but at least it makes sense, unlike Generations or Forces'. The only hole in Colors' story is that beam that went on the moon, that was obviously something they were planning for an eventual sequel and never got revisited.

 

Honestly, I assumed that's where the Time Eater came from.

9 minutes ago, Diogenes said:

I still don't get why people get hung up on these sort of things. What Lost Hex is and why Tails knows about it don't matter to the game's story; it's just a strange new land to justify strange new things. They could've written up a bunch of backstory about it but unless they also wrote some plot beats that tie back to that backstory it's just fluff.

 

3 minutes ago, Wraith said:

They introduced The Lost Hex just like they did Little Planet and Angel Island in 90s. Similar levels of non-description apply to most of the new worlds and societies they introduced across the entire series. It's a series wide problem at worst and it's one that's never really bothered me personally.
 

The thing is Angel Island and Little Planet had some exposition and a good amount of background details given to them through the manuals, while the Lost Hex is unfortunately limited to Tails knowing it's name and a brief catchline in a Japanese commercial. 

Plus, the Deadly Six live there and there's not so much as a throwaway line as to what it is interdepently.

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1 hour ago, Iko said:

 

The story itself is simple but solid, the problem is the scripting.

Nobody is saying it's well written, but at least it makes sense, unlike Generations or Forces'. The only hole in Colors' story is that beam that went on the moon, that was obviously something they were planning for an eventual sequel and never got revisited.

I mean, you can retell Sonic Colors' story without the jokes, and it would be a decent story. You can't retell the story of the other pontaff games without them still being flawed, unless you rewrite the plotholes and the out of character stuff. The closest thing to being decent is Lost World, but it's still missing a lot of bassic stuff such as, what the heck is a Lost Hex and why does Tails know about it. Unless you write extra parts of the story from scratch to explain the missing part of the plot, the story will still be flawed.

Once again, you're not actually addressing any of the criticisms being labelled here. Generations and Forces have their own problems, but we're talking about Colors here. 

I don't see how saying "well it's better than these other two games with worse stories" is anything worth merit. That's the most faint praise you can give it.

About the only positive you've listed is that it's simple and easy to follow, which yea it is, but that's where the praise ends. 

53 minutes ago, Diogenes said:

Sometimes a place is just a place.

It's not really a necessity I admit, but it would be nice if they tried to contextualize the setting as they have done in the past.

It's not a deal breaker or anything, but nobody is really going to remember anything about Lost Hex as anything other than where the game took place compared to say, Angel Island or even Little Planet which are pretty memorable in their own right. 

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Little Planet and Angel Island don't really need any explanation.

Angel Island is just another island, and until near the end of the game, it's doesn't even float in the sky (plus when it does, it's pretty clear why it does).

Little Planet is a small planet, and the name says it already.

Lost Hex instead raises many unanswered questions. Is it a planet? Is it a sort of after life place (heaven/hell)? Are the zeti demons or aliens? Why do they never attack the earth/mobius? Why are wisps on Lost Hex? Why is it "lost"? Does it appear only one time each 100 years or what?

The story of the game feels so random because it happens in a not well defined context, and everything is so generic (like sucking out energy from the planet). There's nothing really wrong in it, aside of most characters having flat personalities and Tails being out of character (Sonic depressed for not being able to save Tails is out of character too IMO). It's not wrong, but weak, generic and weak, nothing really stands out, and the narrative is unsatisfying because it leaves too many questions unanswered. Sonic and Eggman forced to work together was the only interesting part, but it was performed way better in Sonic Adventure 2.

3 minutes ago, Kuzu said:

Once again, you're not actually addressing any of the criticisms being labelled here. Generations and Forces have their own problems, but we're talking about Colors here. 

I don't see how saying "well it's better than these other two games with worse stories" is anything worth merit. That's the most faint praise you can give it.

About the only positive you've listed is that it's simple and easy to follow, which yea it is, but that's where the praise ends. 

Actually, I addressed the criticisms in that post you quoted before.

They said it doesn't have emotional payoffs or tangible consequences, which is not true, because the game is based on Sonic 1's environmental message of the natural paradise being destroyed by technology, which alone is already a tangible consequence, and the wisps being trapped, enslaved and corrupted is another. There are a couple of scenes with focus on emotions as well, and the friendship of Tails and Yacker grows through the game along with the translator being perfected, so there is a sort of character growth and development of a friendship. The game's story is not as bland as haters say... it's filled with those bad jokes; the core of the story is simple but good, it's the jokes that ruin it.

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I do think the Lost Hex isn't quite comparable to Little Planet and Angel Island.  We just needed some kind of throwaway line about whether it's an ordinary place or some kind of legend in Sonic's world, even that would've been enough.  It's easy to imagine it as a thing that exists and is normal in Sonic's world, because Sonic's world also has stuff like the special stage settings in it, but even THEN those have always been kind of been one of those things that's kept weirdly "seperate" to the main plot and never really touched upon by any spoken dialogue in the series, as if we're just supposed to accept them as a gameplay mechanic more than a piece of lore.

Granted, if Sonic Team were already working on the "two worlds" bullshit and this is just normal in the more surreal version of Sonic's world then we're already fighting a losing battle to make a satisfying lore explaination since uhh, yeah, the two worlds bullshit is bullshit.

 

5 hours ago, Iko said:

They said it doesn't have emotional payoffs or tangible consequences, which is not true, because the game is based on Sonic 1's environmental message of the natural paradise being destroyed by technology, which alone is already a tangible consequence, and the wisps being trapped, enslaved and corrupted is another. There are a couple of scenes with focus on emotions as well, and the friendship of Tails and Yacker grows through the game along with the translator being perfected, so there is a sort of character growth and development of a friendship. The game's story is not as bland as haters say... it's filled with those bad jokes; the core of the story is simple but good, it's the jokes that ruin it.

Yeah that's not the kind of lack of payoffs that damage Colours story for me.  "Eggman is bad because he's destroying/enslaving Planet Wisp" is very obvious and not really even a theme at this point in the series, that's Eggman's entire thing.  The damage comes from stuff like Eggman's master plan being stopped by the end of the first zone due to sheer luck of where a piece of the first boss landed after it blew up. Good foreshadowing of a twist comes with little hints that the audience can piece together, not a random coincidence that the camera points directly at and then just tasks you with remembering it for the entire rest of the game with no other new content regarding it.  Eggman's plan being doomed from so early on cheapens the rest of the adventure significantly for me, or at the very least, it causes the finale of the game to be a bit of an anti-climax. "The world under peril from Eggman's mind control ray" is much higher stakes than "Escape from the theme park before it blows up", especially for a character who historically is pretty good at getting from one place to another very quickly. There's an old Pixar storytelling "rule" that says coincidences can get characters into trouble, but never out of them. Now yes the stray robot arm does cause a new problem, but it solves a much bigger one in the process. It's just not a subversion I find particularly interesting.

The friendship between Sonic, Tails and Yakker works fine, and their parting ways at the end of the game is handled well too, I have no critique of that in itself, but the fact that they bring up that he's missing while they're standing in a factory where Wisps get turned into Nega Wisps is kind of laid out to be a big deal, and then the payoff is... I guess he just went off to take a leak or something.

I do somewhat enjoy the fact that the climax of the game is simply a petty grudge match between Sonic and Eggman at the worst possible time to have one (although the aesthetics could have used a bit more work to sell the idea that they're still under time pressure to escape from the park before it explodes), but having a Nega-Wisp Yakker show up at some point in the last act of the story to really put into perspective what Eggman is doing (it's not like we've made a personal connection to any of the other Wisps being Nega-fied en masse) would've really just added an extra bite to it.

I dunno, there's a lot of little things in Colours' story where it almost seemed like they were trying to do something creative and new but don't quite follow the thought all the way to the end, or they try to be subversive for subversions' sake but not really knowing what to do with it (like, starting the game in media res with gameplay just comes off as weird when they make you play two acts before the first cut-scene (genuinely made me think my disc was broken and wasn't playing video files or something), and then when we do get to that first cut-scene, they immediately flash back to what preceeded the first two stages. They might as well have just done a regular intro, the elevator cut-scene is pretty brief anyway).

 

I do have respect for Colours' story, I think it is servicable and I enjoyed it enough the first time through, just seems like a lot of missed potential.

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None of the 3D Sonic games hold up.

i used to love SA/SA2 but I played them both again the last couple days and they play like garbage now

Sonic Colors and Generations were ok at launch but after replaying them recently they just aren’t very good games.

The only games generally well regarded to this day by most critics and fans are Sonic1, Sonic2, Sonic3, Sonic and Knuckles, Sonic CD and Sonic Mania.

This tells us 2 things..

1) Firstly Sonic just does not work in 3D like Mario does. Either the games are complete garbage to begin with (Sonic 06, Boom, Unleashed, Heroes, Shadow) or they were seen as ok on release but years later are just poor/don’t hold up anymore (SA, SA2, Colors, Generations)

Sega should give up making 3D Sonic games and just stick to 2D games.

2) It’s clear that Sonic Team can’t make good Sonic games. Back in the Megadrive days the original Sonic Team were amazing but now the current staff are pitiful and can’t make a good game.

 

Conclusion... Christian Whitehead and his team should be given complete control of Sonic as they are the only ones that can make a great Sonic game since the Megadrive games.

Sonic games should stick to 2D only as 3D either doesn’t work at all or ages badly for Sonic.

Sonic Team should be disbanded as they produce nothing but garbage or games that don’t age well. By disbanding Sonic Team, Sega can afford to pay Christian Whiteheads studio more money for future development.

 

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7 hours ago, Iko said:

Actually, I addressed the criticisms in that post you quoted before.

They said it doesn't have emotional payoffs or tangible consequences, which is not true, because the game is based on Sonic 1's environmental message of the natural paradise being destroyed by technology, which alone is already a tangible consequence, and the wisps being trapped, enslaved and corrupted is another. There are a couple of scenes with focus on emotions as well, and the friendship of Tails and Yacker grows through the game along with the translator being perfected, so there is a sort of character growth and development of a friendship. The game's story is not as bland as haters say... it's filled with those bad jokes; the core of the story is simple but good, it's the jokes that ruin it.

Eggman using technology for nefarious purposes is hardly a theme, at least any more then when he usually does it. The game doesn't really call attention to it, so I fail to understand how it stands out as a central theme of the game. The only time I could say that this might have been a theme is the factory scene, but there's no pay off to it. If that is a theme, it's not a very fleshed out one.

The friendship between Sonic, Tails, and Yacker is fine for what it is, but once again, the lack of build up and pay off is what hurts it overall. Yacker disappears after the first world, and the factory scene leads one to believe that he might have been captured. But this is only ever implied, and Yacker shows up in the ending no worse for wear or with an acknowledgement of where he was.

 

 

It's not bad, but it is incredibly bland. The story never bothers to gives any real catharsis to what it sets up, so it kinda fails to really leave an impression. It's fine if you just want to play the game and nothing more, which I'm sure was the intention behind it but I'd hardly call it one of the series' stand out cases of writing, which it often is considered.

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13 hours ago, Kuzu said:

I don't think people hate them, so much that the magic has worn off and people have moved on. The ones saying the game is trash and whatever are mostly Adventure fans who hate everything about these games since it was the point when the series distanced itself from the Adventure era and how, those games were heavily mocked when these came out. Like for real, between Game Grumps and Projared, the collective community actively turned on the Adventure games as "archaic". 

I don't think projared had much to do with people turning on the adventure games to begin with. People had done that wayyyy before his review, which by the way was like 95% true. And you even acknowledge this earlier in your post. That is the truth. Projared may have made it fun and meme-y in recent years because the Sonic series had released yet another catastrophe level game in boom and was taking shots from the media yet again. The adventure games were turned on very sharply immediately following 06. Every critic was piling on at not only that disaster but what the series had become over the last few years leading to 06. That one game alone was really the last straw and the series needed new life and a new direction. This is what the boost era did for the series. And despite it being not being aces all around it did provide a few years of positive momentum for the series when it so desperately needed it. Without unleashed/colors/Gens this series is probably much closer to dead than people realize.

A lot of fans of this series may have been too young at the time to realize it or dont want to acknowledge it because their favorite titles fall in that time period. But the boost games were clearly a breath of fresh air coming off of that 2002-2007 period. I remember it like yesterday because I was one of many die hard who were hyped by 06 as "a return to form" (how many times have we heard that since?) and promise initially only to see the beast for what it truly was and get crushed.

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I'll fully admit that I'm a bigger fan of the Adventure era of games than I am of games like Colors, which colors my views a lot.

But what you said about the games being a breath of fresh air goes back to my point about that being faint praise in general. The primary reason that the post-06 games got so much good reception among the fanbase was because it basically stripped all of bad things from those games, but it didn't really add anything innovative to compensate. 

So what you're left with are games that do just the bare minimum to function. In the context of Sonic, which is a franchise that generally has put out mediocre to outright terrible games, that is pretty noteworthy. But it also illustrates just low the bar has been set, that merely being functional is considered an exceptional thing.

When put alongside their contemporary platforming franchises, Colors or Generations are pretty underwhelming if you're not already a Sonic fan to begin with, as once again, they do the bare minimum to set themselves apart from the competition.

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21 hours ago, Blue Blood said:

Can I just make it clear that the criticism that Generations receives now isn't retrospective as you suggest it is. Common criticisms towards Generations that go back to 2011 concern the following:

1) Its overuse of 2D.

2) The story was disappointing. 

3) Classic Sonic never felt right. 

4) It was short. 

There's an element of Generations being tarnished by the years that followed, as you say. In my honest opinion, Generations was never that good to begin with; it was merely "fairly decent" and always will be. But it was also the best 3D Sonic game to come along since of the Adventure series a full ten years earlier, so it garnered a lot of praise simply because it wasn't absolute garbage. It unfortunately represented a relatively low high-point for the series before it fell off the deep end again with Boom, Lost World and Forces. Generations and Colours very much felt like the series starting to pick itself up, and the ball was dropped only a few feet off the ground. You can't help but look at Generations a bit bleakly if it's supposed to be as good as Sonic gets. Generations was never free from criticism though and it's not revisionist. 

I've never heard criticisms about overused returning stages or general nostalgia pandering and Classic Sonic's presence applied to Generations. It's true that Generations set or perpetrated many of the issues that currently plague the series, but they don't apply to it. 

I'm not claiming anything revisionist and I'm well aware that Generations had criticisms when it first came out. I was around during its marketing and release. You didn't actually name some of the most common complaints though, which were: the game had too many city level tropes, the spin dash was overpowered (related to Classic Sonic's broken physics as you point out), the need of mission keys to progress, the final boss was terrible and that Planet Wisp was a really bad stage.

You are right that the game was criticised for being too short, having a terrible story and not having enough 3D, but I don't think that's why it's usually criticised now (well, aside from the lack of 3D).

The main point I was making, which you ignored, is that Generations has received an almost entirely new critical consensus in the fanbase in the years after its release. No one really talks about its length and story anymore (perhaps the story, but to a lesser extent). Or the abundance of city levels. Generations' 3D gameplay was mostly commended by everyone t the time, with only a very small number of people criticising its controls and linearity. People have become much more critical of its application of the Boost gameplay since. And I think that's largely because the Boost gameplay itself (which was only somewhat controversial upon the game's release) has become widely unpopular in the fanbase since, especially after Forces' release.

The Boost gameplay used to be very popular actually, I remember in 2008 when NickonAquaMagna made a video criticising Unleashed's Boost gameplay (a very unusual and unpopular view at the time) and everyone absolutely flew off the handle about it. If you look at the comments now, and generally look at the Sonic fandom, everyone seems to have moved over to this view verbatim. Maybe the SSMB was ahead of its time in that period, but there's definitely been a gradual rejection of the Boost game style. It's certainly not 'revisionist' to claim that.

And as a personal note, I'd say that Generations is a far better and balanced game than either Sonic Adventure game.

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7 hours ago, StarWarsSonic said:

None of the 3D Sonic games hold up.

i used to love SA/SA2 but I played them both again the last couple days and they play like garbage now

Sonic Colors and Generations were ok at launch but after replaying them recently they just aren’t very good games.

The only games generally well regarded to this day by most critics and fans are Sonic1, Sonic2, Sonic3, Sonic and Knuckles, Sonic CD and Sonic Mania.

This tells us 2 things..

1) Firstly Sonic just does not work in 3D like Mario does. Either the games are complete garbage to begin with (Sonic 06, Boom, Unleashed, Heroes, Shadow) or they were seen as ok on release but years later are just poor/don’t hold up anymore (SA, SA2, Colors, Generations)

Sega should give up making 3D Sonic games and just stick to 2D games.

It's funny you say that, because "sticking to 2D games" is exactly what Sega has been doing over the course of this decade. Those poorly-aging, not very good 3D games you just said you replayed? There's far more 2D gameplay going on in those entries than one would normally expect. And the two "3D" games that came afterwards (Lost World and Forces) have only been worse in that respect.

Meanwhile we do have at least one 2D Sonic in recent memory that wasn't well received at all (Boom: Shattered Crystal), alongside plenty of other 2D Sonics that are generally forgotten. So maybe 2D Sonic isn't exactly the free ticket to victory that one might think.

By the by, you said yourself that the current Sonic Team can't make good games. They've been responsible for almost each and every 3D (and "3D") Sonic you just listed. Is that really an indictment on 3D Sonic gameplay or an indictment on the capabilities of the developer? You don't think it's possible that a 3D Sonic could be good if you gave it to another studio that makes good games? (Emphasis on the last bit--please don't cite Boom as an example of 3D Sonic being inherently flawed, the studio who made it didn't have one game to their credit prior.)

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20 hours ago, Wraith said:

It's hard to speak about how the general sentiment toward the game changed but I recall debates about these games quality being the same back when I first joined as they are now. It wouldn't even be hard to go back and look at older threads on this exact topic if one were curious. We've been talking about this for almost 10 years

15 at minimum.

If these forums didn’t suffer a complete wipeout from back in 2008-09, you’d find even older topics that generally held the sentiment that ironically enough we still haven’t grown out of even as we’ve further come to understand the actual issues in greater depth.

 

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