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Sonic Forces SPOILER Thread

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7 minutes ago, Razule said:

I've finally figured out the ten stages Shadow's DLC refers to. Must be counting boss stages.

Sonic's seven levels plus Zavok, Infinite, and Metal Sonic. 0.01% Eggman has control of probably IS the Shadow DLC. 

Isn't Metal a Tag Team boss?

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9 minutes ago, Gabz Girl said:

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Are we seriously comparing these two games? I haven’t beaten Odyssey yet but I’m pretty damn sure that the final boss does not rehash or copy a final boss from a previous game like Sonic Forces did! 

How do you waste a character in Odyssey anyway? I mean for all of it's greatness, it's not got a massive focus on story. I just finished New Donk today so I can confirm Pauline gets more focus than a good amount of characters thus far. Nintendo clearly know people were excited to have her here and placed a good amount of focus on that, and that's all I'll say without jumping to spoiler stuff.

But this isn't the place for Odyssey related stuff. 

7 minutes ago, Indigo Rush said:

Colors and Forces specifically. I don't think the other boost games are still not a best case scenario for longetivity either, but they do have more depth to them and are easier to return to thanks to a marginally higher skill ceiling.

I mean personally I find Unleashed and Gens' modern levels really replayable so I guess that ultimately comes down to who plays it. Personally, I can't stand replaying Sonic 1 2 or CD while I like Mania and S3&K. I've already done five runs of Sonic Mania at least while for Sonic 1, 2 and CD, I've done less full playthroughs despite having played over a longer time period.

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Can I request that we please NOT spoil Super Mario Odyssey in this thread? I'm still playing it and I came into this thread for info on Sonic, NOT Mario. I'm not even sure why we're comparing the two anyway. 

And don't come at me with that whole "It's Mario. What's to spoil?" BS... You can't just decide what's worth spoiling for others and what's not.

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3 minutes ago, PKGaming said:

Can I request that we please NOT spoil Super Mario Odyssey in this thread? I'm still playing it and I came into this thread for info on Sonic, NOT Mario. I'm not even sure why we're comparing the two anyway. 

And don't come at me with that whole "It's Mario. What's to spoil?" BS... You can't just decide what's worth spoiling for others and what's not.

 

2 minutes ago, Mayor D said:

Yeah don't post Mario spoilers.

We WANT to play that game!

It's not really spoiling if you're confirming what the majority of the trailers since it's announcement has told people? 

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I've seriously gotten to the point where I don't give a fuck if this franchise dies thanks to SEGA's consistent incompetence. Officially there's no point to be being a fan of this franchise anymore. May as well just support fan creations. 

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5 minutes ago, Mayor D said:

But Forces Trailers told me I'd be fighting against Chaos, Metal Sonic, Red Alien Thing and Infinite and it turns out I'm not!

So SEGA's misleading marketing somehow changes Nintendo's honest marketing because...? 

Whatever the case, it isn't a spoiler. Nintendo have been clear since the trailers had her. Even the marketing and TV ads has her, as does the interior boxart of of the game. It isn't a spoiler. It's like saying Classic Sonic being in Forces is a spoiler despite the first trailer make it clear that would be the case. 

But that not the point, this Odyssey stuff should really just stop here and go back to Forces.

And speaking of Forces, god almighty, I haven't seen much of the spoilers but I heard that Tails line in the ending. SEGA, why are you so hell-bent on ruining one of my favourite characters?

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27 minutes ago, Bobnik said:

I guess with all this negativity surrounded around this game, I think I'll post something that's actually pretty cool (for me at least). Note: this screenshot ain't mine, but I got it from the forum post from a person that got the game early.

hesa01pNQno.jpg

Only good thing I seen in Forces so far. As everyone can tell from my profile picture, those soap shoes are still my favorite Sonic shoes ever. Wish they had made them standard after Adventure 2..

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12 minutes ago, Ryannumber1Scarer said:

And speaking of Forces, god almighty, I haven't seen much of the spoilers but I heard that Tails line in the ending. SEGA, why are you so hell-bent on ruining one of my favourite characters?

In the apparent words of Tails.....Tru Dat......

Spoiler

They've been running him for years, this is just the worst offender.

 

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31 minutes ago, Bobnik said:

I guess with all this negativity surrounded around this game, I think I'll post something that's actually pretty cool (for me at least). Note: this screenshot ain't mine, but I got it from the forum post from a person that got the game early.

hesa01pNQno.jpg

Credit where credit's due, that's pretty neat. Wonder if there's Werehog shoes..

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Just now, Zippo said:

Someone else on YouTube has the game and is uploading levels separately, assuming you don't want to watch massive streams.

"You've got to stop Eggman and end this war quick!" 

uh tails

buddy

pal

It might be a little too late to end this war quick if it's been going on as long as it's implied.

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33 minutes ago, Indigo Rush said:

I'm going to try to present this as concisely as I can. But first, please look at this tiny banana:

GEm4Oai.jpg

Awesome. Feel the stress and prejudice leaving you? Wonderful! Great.

Here's why the lot of us have problems with Sonic Forces.

It does not look fun.

That's it, really. It doesn't look compelling. But why. Why are people, Sonic 'fans' in particular, shying away from this? Why are the lot of us so skeptical? What is it about Sonic Forces that makes it look 'not fun' and such?

I've played video games for many years. I'm over a quarter of a century old, and the lot of my experience comes in the form of Sonic games, 2D, 3D, and everything in between. I've been a member of these particular forums for over a decade, even. I reluctantly cannot deny that I have a strong attachment to these games. Sonic as a series has stuck with me very strongly and I've dug my way through just about every game released, new, old, good, bad, obscure, you name it, I've owned it, and if not owned it, I've probably played it, and if not that, I've at least researched it in depth. I'm a series veteran. I've seen what Sonic is capable of being and becoming. We've discussed the series' potential to extreme lengths on these forums. I'm also a member on Retro and the Sega Forums, but I digress. Point is, I've been around for a while. I've seen things I've heard things and I know things.

The problem with Sonic Forces, the reason it is making long time and seasoned fans such as myself turn away from it instinctively is because we've done this song and dance before, and we can determine based on series precedent what will happen. We understand the people who are working on the game. It's the same reason almost none of us doubted Sonic Mania's inevitable praise the moment we saw Christian Whitehead's logo pop up on the debut trailer. No one who is working on Sonic Forces is new. Setting aside the fact that a glut of us don't care for the boost gameplay style to begin with, we know who the level designer and director are. We know who's writing the script. We know what they've done before, and using our God-given eyes and intellect, we're able to deduce from the plentiful footage we've seen leading up to the release leak of this game what the rest of it would be like. The designers behind Forces are not interested in intricate and replayable level layouts, they don't care much for creating dynamic systems or physics that could result in the player's input resulting in an outcome that may not necessarily follow their scripting; which, funnily enough, is how folk like Diogenes have determined how the designers plan out these stages: in the form of a movie storyboard. See, unlike the original sidescrollers, the lot of 3D Sonic games are intended to be played as a sequence of interactive setpieces and cinematics; there's no depth beyond how quickly you can move from one scene to the next, or if you can track down a stray collectible along the way. What this is lacking in is meaningful agency for the player; it relieves the burden of navigation in lieu of pathing that elicits a sense of claustrophobia. This is where the hallway comments come from.

When you compare to other truly 3D platformers in any era (the good ones, at least), one of the key important design aspects is their intent on letting the player experiment and explore the control scheme; the joy of movement and the flow of level design work in tandem to present an experience where the player has the choice, the freedom, to interact with the world at a pace that's comfortable to them. In a successful instance, this should feel rewarding, it should allow the player, who is a human being, to feel a sense of satisfaction from discovering the world and solving challenges by the wit the good Lord has blessed them with.

Now, you may want to shrug this all off as non-applicable to Sonic. Sonic's a bloke who dashes through roller coaster worlds at high speeds, who has time to navigate the world when you're running at the speed of sound, after all? The thing is while that seems like it's the ideal  choice for a character who runs at high speed, it results in a series of levels that end up being one-note and repetitive. If you think about it, what is the fundamental difference between any of the Modern Sonic stages in Sonic Forces beyond their aesthetic? The obstacles and paths may become a little more complex as you progress throughout the story, but as far as the rest is concerned, you're doing very little other than holding the boost button when in a 3D space while jumping every so often. In 2D areas, you're not even going fast much of the time, instead relegated to navigating a series of blocks and basic platforms to progress to the next sequence. The seams in this design are very apparent, and having played and studied these Modern Sonic games for the past near decade, it's becoming very stale. Not only is there little differentiating the gameplay between stages, but these design philosophies are bleeding between each game, and all the while failing to iterate in a meaningful fashion.

The only thing that changes between them is the hook, the "gimmick" as it were, which is usually just another gameplay style or a story setup that might interest you. You know them: The Werehog, The Wisps, Classic Sonic, Classic Sonic again and also a custom character. There are also serious issues with Classic Sonic's gameplay making a reappearance; namely that the controls and mechanics fail to translate from their origin. On a surface level, it's reasonable to understand why they may not be able to get this exactly right, but especially after Sonic Generations has come and gone, it feels like a foolish decision to take a one-trick pony and ask it to impress the second go round, and considering Sonic Mania delivered the best 2D Sonic experience in decades, it feels even worse by comparison.

All that said, the issue isn't just that both of these interpretations of Sonic gameplay have become stale, it's also tantamount that they're failing to capitalize on their inherent strengths in any fashion: this is a result of the designers talent and intent in making these games. If you haven't noticed, even fans of the Boost games are crying foul at Sonic Forces' level design. On one hand, it's reasonable to concede some of these choices may be wise ones: the lack of full 3D exploration in Modern Sonic is likely a result of the designers understanding that his controls in 3D are especially cumbersome, so holding back on those areas in the Modern levels seems like a wise choice: focusing on the gameplay style's strengths. In contrast, however, not much has been done to buff these strengths, if anything they feel like they've become weaker. There's little in the way of branching paths in these levels, and nary a curve or slope in sight on a 2D plane. Classic Sonic faces this issue as well, as there's little in the way of dynamic surfaces to play with; at best we've seen some complex platforming challenges in later stages, however very few of them incorporate Sonic's momentum physics. In short, this is the source of the "blocky platforming" complaint you may be hearing.

It comes down to that. The player has little freedom to explore, because the design prohibits it. Going off the beaten path will scarcely reward you. Your goal is to make your way from setpiece to setpiece as fast as you can, and you're cursed to try anything else. In video games, fun often comes from being able to say "I figured this out," or "I accomplished this task by myself." A sense of accomplishment and reward is inherently appealing to the human mind. There's nothing to figure out in Sonic Forces, only quick reaction time and twitch gameplay... broken apart by the occasional clunky jumping challenge in 2D.

Sonic Forces is likely drawing people in with it's premise. Eggman's taken over the world, there's a new villain with a mysterious power, there's a new maguffin to learn about, there's a link between this game and Mania before it, you can create your own character, each level is like an explosive, action-packed move sequence, it's designed to appeal to someone looking for a spectacle, if not an interactive story. Otherwise, it's use of recognizable and fan-favorite characters is the draw for die-hard fans who are not going to miss out on the biggest release in the past 5 years. Sega is, and always has been, incredibly talented at drawing a crowd, subverting your expectations on a surface level and hooking you in to trying out the next Sonic game. The thing is... as fans get older, we start seeing the pattern. It's not quite the memetic Sonic Cycle, but there's absolutely a sequence of events that take place almost every time.

In summation, it doesn't look fun because it's providing little else between each visual spectacle besides one-note gameplay and repetitive challenges. We have noticed the patterns, we know who's developing the game down to their names, and it's failing to hook many of us because we've wised up to Sonic Team's playbook. Sonic Forces is going to be a blast for many of you to play through the first, maybe even the second and third time. But once you slog through every EX platforming challenge and collect everything you can, once you've watched the cutscenes enough times to burn them into your conscious like the Adventure games had for us older folk, I can't guarantee you're going to want to replay those levels once the charm has worn off.

Meanwhile... I, and many others have played through those old Genesis games time and time again. Not simply because it's what I grew up with as a youngster, but because I still discover new things even 20 years later. I find new ways to use Sonic's momentum physics to improve my skill. Each playthrough becomes different and my experience is never the exact same. The designers don't ask me to play the game the exact way they want me too, their hand is not felt strongly, they give me the freedom to take this other path, they want me to go back as a different character and go off the beaten path in multiple ways to find new ways to beat the level. I'm not being guided by a story, I'm not rushing to the end so I can skip the next cutscene to play the next level, I'm taking in the world and experiencing the dynamic gameplay in a way I could never do with the gameplay seen in games like Sonic Forces.

 

Sonic Colors was seen as the best Sonic game a decade.

 

When was the last time you've played it?

Quote

All that said, the issue isn't just that both of these interpretations of Sonic gameplay have become stale, it's also tantamount that they're failing to capitalize on their inherent strengths in any fashion: this is a result of the designers talent and intent in making these games. If you haven't noticed, even fans of the Boost games are crying foul at Sonic Forces' level design.

Funny thing is; The boost concept was only used interestingly once and that was World Adventure. It was a genuine and amazing first attempt to redefine/Refine Sonic and put him on a better pathway after Sonic Next Gen. Much like how Adventure and Sonic 1 created their own new attempt, this was much in the same. Now likes those games, they needed much improvement to see fit. They both started started off flawed in knowing what not to do and made the necessary choices on improvements for more natural gameplay(except for the Adventure gameplay as SA2 redefined again what was Sonic sadly).

The Boost formula, within it's first conception was quite natural and started very strong. It had many flaws on the first go but that was ok! The next game(if we go by the assumption of Sonic 1>2>3) should have not only been easier to produce but had progression right? I'd have to say no. Colors did a complete 180 by not only slowing the game down but destroying all of the potential in that the team did for SWA. Almost every level gimmick was reused and the physics were no longer had a sense of momentum to them and were instead floaty. Generations did much better on reviving the boost gameplay to what it once was but it still wasn't an improvement from World Adventure. By comparison, It's still worse. Physics once again, aren't the same nor better. Level design is more open and yet it borrows a little too much from Colors. 

 

Then comes Lost world creating it's own version of the boost(No improvements as you can just infinitely boost) and now...Forces. 9 years for this gameplay style and it's now gone from poor to good to mediocre to bad. 

I'm not really a "boost" fan so to speak as I am a fan of how World Adventure did it so well despite the issues. The game wasn't as linear or automated as one would say. While going through the stage regularly without using Sonic's physics, it might feel a little bland but this video here is one of the reasons why Sonic World Adventure is not only the best of the Boost but had great potential. 

 

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