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Sonic Mania: Sequel Speculation (Spoilers)

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On 8/30/2017 at 8:27 AM, Sonictrainer said:

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Sonic Mania is awesome.

Being able to play as Classic Sonic, Classic Tails, and Classic Knuckles through a selection of new Zones and remixed Zones, while collecting Rings, Medallions, and Chaos Emeralds, and fighting Badniks, Super Badniks, HBH, and Eggman is amazing.

Though time will tell if Sonic Mania 2 will be a thing just yet, I wanted to discuss all the things we’d love to see change or remain the same in the possible sequel.

 

NOTES: 

  • Most of us have agreed that in a Sonic Mania sequel, Classic Amy should be added as a playable character. While some could debate that she doesn’t Damsel out of Distress until Sonic Adventure, she was playable in some of the Genesis and Saturn Era spinoff games. Plus, Sonic Adventure 2 sweeps her to the sidelines anyway.
  • We’ve also agreed that in the Zone Ratio should be reversed, having mostly New Zones and maybe 4 or less remixed ones.
  • 5 Words: Zone Transitions for Every Zone

 

Discussion Questions

1. Should the sequel’s graphical presentation stay in the Saturn Era style like the first game? Or would you prefer something different? (For Example: Sonic Advance style sprites, but with Classic designs)

2. Should the Zone and Act structure stay the same? (2 Acts per Zone, Boss at the end of each Act)

3. Should they change the Bonus Stages and Special Stages?

4. Are there features from other Sonic Games that you’d like to see in the sequel? (Examples: World Map, Collection Room, Score Attack, Bestiary, etc)

5. Should the partner system be more fleshed out?

6. Should Sonic have all his abilities available up to this point (Super Peelout, Insta-Shield, and Drop Dash) or stay nerfed?

 

Story Discussion Questions

S1. Do you want Mania and its sequels to be considered the Phantom Ruby Saga, or should the sequel focus on something else?

S2. Should the HBH return? If you say “Yes”, should new members be added/created?

S3. Are there any other Classic characters you want as playable characters besides Amy? Or maybe just as a cameo?

  1. Yes I think the Pixel Art Style should definitely stay and hell they can expand on it more, just look at stuff like Clockwork Knight 2 from back then where it's constantly switching perspectives 
    Or hell don't have it be held back by the Saturn's limitations and use more modern techinques like dynamic lighting and shit
    Just look at how impressive Pixel Art can be when it's not held back
    Image result for The last night gameImage result for nature pixel artImage result for Cave pixel art
    Of course, they don't have to abandon that Classic Sonic Pixel Art style as it's a great looking style, but I definitely think there's ways of expanding on it and making it look even better and more impressive then Mania (Which already looks very impressive.)
  2. Sure, it's clearly a working structure and thus should stay (Though I certainly wouldn't mind to see one or two 3 act zone ala Sonic 2 if they can make it work)
  3. Absolutely, one of the core traditions of the Classic Sonic game is how the Special Stages and bonus stages are always different from each other from game to game and I think it should stay that way to keep it from being stale and overused (I certainly don't want another Half Pipe)
  4. A World Map would be interesting to see and I certainly wouldn't be against such a feature if added (I have thought such a thing in the past), though I don't think it's necessarily needed as Zone transitions and cutscenes are enough, though one feature that would be interesting to have is something similar to the Red Ring system in Generations where getting them would unlock extra content like concept art and even skills (Mania did do something like this with the Medallion system in the Blue Spheres bonus stages, so it doesn't seem too far fetched.) and something like the Egg Shuttle from Colors would be interesting as well (Where you're constantly going from act to act and/or zone to zone to beat your best time and score.) beyond those aspects though, I don't think the other stuff is necessary, but it would be interesting to see such things in future games.
  5. I think the best question would be if we should even have a partner system and personally, while I do think it's an interesting idea and I wouldn't be against such a thing returning, I don't think we need to see it really.
  6. A maxed out Sonic would definitely be sweet and should have been a thing in Mania honestly.

S1. Fuck no, let's just have the Phantom Ruby be a one (or two in the case of Forces) time thing like the Time Stones and focus on something else.
S2. While I certainly wouldn't be against them returning, I would rather see some new emenies to fight then seeing them again
S3. Amy is really all I want at the moment, though I certainly wouldn't mind the Chaotix being playable in a Classic Sonic game again if they can make their inclusion work. Cameos though???? maybe a nod to Mighty and Ray like in Generations, but that's it really. (And only if it works like the wanted posters in Mirage Saloon)

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I'd stick to the three playable characters for main game, and Amy and others for bonus (not special) stages.

I'd really like to be surprised by the next 2D Sonic game. Mania is a blessing and some kind of justice for the fans who were longing for a game like that for so long, but I'd rather see a jump like the one from Sonic 2 to Sonic 3.

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I was noticing some speculation while reading Retro yesterday about the absence of a new patch, and also of the Mania team on their board.  

I am not sure that this current relatively brief time period of no activity means anything at all, the team must indeed be resting and doing their own ongoing work.

But it does remind me that something similar to , but probably a bit different in format/execution to "Mania Director's Cut" is actually possible in the future, between now and an all new game.  

Whether it is creating the additional zone transitions, or some of the amazing zones that still show signs of something more possibly waiting (Hydrocity and Lava Reef mainly; i am sure that they wanted to try and bring the zone into that city and large machine for a Sonic/Tails Act 3 but it would have been a lot of extra work!), and that there is probably not another game creating team out there today that could make as special a Director's Cut edition as them, it doesn't seem like as much of a pipe dream, as simply a matter of whether they decide to do it or not.  ^_^:)   

 

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All I'm begging for is please don't go all Rehash Mania 2 on us.

Please SEGA

Please Christian Whitehead

 

Also, it needs improvement. The Classic Sonic formula is starting to get tiring and somewhat boring after it being used in so many games now. (To the point where there's more Classic games than main boost games and even Adventure/Dreamcast era games, and it's getting somewhat stale.

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On 12/21/2017 at 10:45 AM, ClassicKnuckles said:

Also, it needs improvement. The Classic Sonic formula is starting to get tiring and somewhat boring after it being used in so many games now. (To the point where there's more Classic games than main boost games and even Adventure/Dreamcast era games, and it's getting somewhat stale.

What would you want to see improved to prevent it from becoming stale?

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Calling Sonic Mania stale for going back to the style of Sonic that actually worked 100% without any BS would almost be on the same level as calling Super Mario Odyssey for mostly going back to the style of Super Mario 64. Although that game took more liberties in moving its style forward than Mania did... then again, Nintendo could afford to experiment more, whereas Sonic needed something safe to give a much needed confidence boost. Unfortunately for that purpose, Sonic Forces happened along and...

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Reposting this from another thread:

'Low skill floor, high skill ceiling' to quote a Youtuber is the kind of game design that is optimal for the Sonic series and while the classic formula gets the first part right I feel more can and needs to be done in the other direction for the sake of replayability, adding an extra degree of challenge for veterans and most importantly to stop the series from stagnating. Speed does not define Sonic but it is a huge part of the series' identity yet I feel this fundamental, even in the Classic games, is only partially integrated with the overall gameplay and could be implemented more holistically especially outside the dedicated 'speed sections' of the level. One classic game that actively strives to use speed as a mechanic as opposed to just a means to an end is Sonic CD with its time travel gimmick, the execution was poor but I feel the concept is worth revisiting also another idea that's heavily inspired by Mario 3 is to make certain abilities like for example a wall jump for Sonic conditional to reaching max speed first. Another feature that's unobtrusive and which I'd like to see brought to a potential Mania sequel is a trick system (introduce grind rails too) and a ranking system similar to SA2 where time, rings, enemies killed and trick bonus determine your grade. So that's:

Time Travel ala Sonic CD but handled better

Abilitie(s) like wall jump that are only executable upon hitting max speed (kinda like the Metroid Shinespark and flying in SMB3)

Trick and Ranking system (includes the Cool Bonus from Mania) 

also one more: killing an enemy gives you a short speed boost like in the original DKC games, feel like this would add an extra level of strategy to speed running with players looking to create chains. 

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It's a bit silly to say that classic Sonic gameplay is stale after just one game that finally brought the series back to the quality we expect from it. If you were talking about it like in an art style sense, I'll agree; everyone is sick of Green Hill, that's a fact. But what's also a fact is classic Sonic gameplay never gets old, something I should know since I've played and replayed the original 4 games countless times for nearly 20 years. It's timeless.

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11 hours ago, Indigo Rush said:

Sonic Team and Dimps have been missing the mark and all but dragged the concept of 2D Sonic through the mud for ages

Also, hi guys. ^_^ Merry Festivus!

Not just 2D tho' :V

Yet again our beloved hedgehog's name is in the mud. Mania trully is a miracle, a Christmas miracle, if you will. But Sonic Team had to be the Grinch, right?

I don't think anyone here need to beg for no more re-used zones, at least not for Taxman, it was never HIS idea. I for one am not 100% against them, but I would, like everyone else, rather have more new zones than old ones. 

Also, happy holydays, man.

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Wall jump only triggering at high speeds seems counterintuitive; conversely, let's not forget that we already have wall-running which does indeed trigger at high speeds!

With that said, I'm not wholly opposed to the idea of experimenting a little with the simplicity of Sonic's moveset, so long as that simplicity isn't compromised.  Even New Super Mario Bros. expanded Mario's classic 2D moveset to include wall-jumps, consecutive jump height increases, and the ground pound - but what you have to remember is that jumping is Mario's main mechanic, and not Sonic's.  Speed and rolling are Sonic's classic main mechanics, so anything you add should flow from that without compromising it.  The Drop Dash is a good example; all it does is cut that dead time after a drop where you just want to spend a couple of seconds charging up a spindash.  What else?  Not a wall-jump, but some kind of wall-bounce which lets you hit a wall and spring off in the opposite direction without losing all of your momentum is a thought.  As a fan of the Rush games it's impossible for me to be wholly opposed to air and grind tricks, which give you something to do during otherwise empty hangtime - but what would they give you in a game without a Boost Meter?  It's worth thinking about, so long as you don't end up with either an excessively technical playstyle or one which revolves around a button-mashing sugar rush.

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1 hour ago, Maxtiis said:

It's a bit silly to say that classic Sonic gameplay is stale after just one game that finally brought the series back to the quality we expect from it. If you were talking about it like in an art style sense, I'll agree; everyone is sick of Green Hill, that's a fact. But what's also a fact is classic Sonic gameplay never gets old, something I should know since I've played and replayed the original 4 games countless times for nearly 20 years. It's timeless.

It gets old for me, it is the reason I wasn't hyped for Mania.

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People just can't take critique of anything at sonic mania. All he said was he didn't want it to become stale. And in a sense it's true you don't. But at the same time as a 28 year old fan it is sad that to get  good sonic game you have to literally make a game meant for the early 90s. How is it Nintendo can transition Mario into amazing 4d games without needing to prerelease a new super Mario world 3 mania
a pretty

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12 minutes ago, FFWF said:

Wall jump only triggering at high speeds seems counterintuitive; conversely, let's not forget that we already have wall-running which does indeed trigger at high speeds!

With that said, I'm not wholly opposed to the idea of experimenting a little with the simplicity of Sonic's moveset, so long as that simplicity isn't compromised.  Even New Super Mario Bros. expanded Mario's classic 2D moveset to include wall-jumps, consecutive jump height increases, and the ground pound - but what you have to remember is that jumping is Mario's main mechanic, and not Sonic's.  Speed and rolling are Sonic's classic main mechanics, so anything you add should flow from that without compromising it.  The Drop Dash is a good example; all it does is cut that dead time after a drop where you just want to spend a couple of seconds charging up a spindash.  What else?  Not a wall-jump, but some kind of wall-bounce which lets you hit a wall and spring off in the opposite direction without losing all of your momentum is a thought.  As a fan of the Rush games it's impossible for me to be wholly opposed to air and grind tricks, which give you something to do during otherwise empty hangtime - but what would they give you in a game without a Boost Meter?  It's worth thinking about, so long as you don't end up with either an excessively technical playstyle or one which revolves around a button-mashing sugar rush.

Just look at the Advance series for any of your answers, there were new mechanics (including the prototype for the Boost in Advance 2 which actually required you to build up and maintain speed,  new moves, new characters, and an amazing gameplay gimmick with Advance 3.

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6 minutes ago, Slashy said:

It gets old for me, it is the reason I wasn't hyped for Mania.

I was this way at manias reveal. It looked nice but I was like really sega. Playing it safe going back to a 2d style game. If only they still loved sonic like they did in the dreamcast years

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5 minutes ago, Slashy said:

Just look at the Advance series for any of your answers, there were new mechanics (including the prototype for the Boost in Advance 2 which actually required you to build up and maintain speed,  new moves, new characters, and an amazing gameplay gimmick with Advance 3.

Advance is an example of over-complicating things and often falling into pitfalls when adding new mechanics imo. The level design also took a nosedive the deeper into the series they got. They weren't really making classic styled Sonic games at all. They need to be more careful than those games.

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I'm kinda of two minds about this; on one hand Mania is such a great game and of a style that was gone for so long that I'm sure I'd be happy to just have more of the same for another game or two, but on the other I also wish I could see the classic gameplay start trying to catch up with the 20+ years of iterating and experimenting that it missed out on.

If there ever is a Mania 2, it'll be interesting to see which direction it ends up leaning.

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7 minutes ago, Josh said:

Advance is an example of over-complicating things and often falling into pitfalls when adding new mechanics imo. The level design also took a nosedive the deeper into the series they got. They weren't really making classic styled Sonic games at all. They need to be more careful than those games.

I never saw anyone complain about the mechanics (only with some team combos in advance 3), but aside from SOME questionable level design I don't see how it is NOT an example of iterating and experimenting in the classic series.

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2 minutes ago, Slashy said:

I never saw anyone complain about the mechanics (only with some team combos in advance 3), but aside from SOME questionable level design I don't see how it is NOT an evolution of the classic series.

There are a lot of elements like the artstyle being completely different, the level design philosophy being completely different, the mechanics being completely different, but the biggest thing is that it's not really a series that thinks about rolling(Classic Sonic's main mechanic) and how to encourage it. 

The boost mechanic in 2 is praised for being better than the actual boost because it requires momentum, but it gives you none of the control the Boost games after like Rush give you with boosting while also heavily discouraging rolling in one swoop. Stuff like the trick system would also encourage twitchy reactions over commitment...which is also a staple of the Boost games. 

The partner mechanic in 3 is even worse. It completely changes and sometimes mangles character movesets for no real reason. I don't really have a problem with the idea, but they went way too far with it and overloaded the game with movement mechanics. Part of the charm of Classic Sonic is the simplicity.

The Drop Dash isn't necessarily a more drastic addition than any of this, but it's a smart one because it addresses a problem with gameplay flow. It adds to what the classics were doing instead of tearing everything down and slapping shit on for no reason. I see the Advance games as prototype Rush games at best and kind of confused messes at worst(Advance 3)

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Even the first Sonic Advance doesn't follow the same design and flow as the originals. The amount of effort that went into replicating the classics' physics goes largely wasted due to boost pad and spike trap syndromes, and like Josh pointed out, there are few to no areas that encourage rolling at all. It could have had the shitty physics from Advance 3 and nothing of value would have been lost.

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Yes, I played the Advance games a long time ago, and enjoyed them - but I did not confuse them for anything particularly resembling a Classic experience, even the vaunted Advance 1; they are very different in visual and gameplay style, and quite frankly I think prone to the wrong kind of complication.  They are fine games, but they are not games about rolling.

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