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EdsonBubsy

Nakamura: Sonic Forces was intentionally designed for you to boost to the end of the level

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According to the NHK world interview seen by TSSZ: 

Sonic Forces was deliberately designed to boost through stages without much of any other complexity. (lol hard mode) confirming that they have no idea why the Boost Formula was liked in Unleashed in the first place and explains its deterioration since colors.

It seems now even more clear Sega/Sonic Team does not understand what the fanbase wants, or well most of the fanbase, as well as what would attract new comers, since those don't seem to be coming.

 

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2 minutes ago, JezMM said:

I feel a developer could say this about pretty much any boost Sonic game and it'd still be accurate as a PR comment.

And the funny thing is... it's not even particularly true, I mean, does anyone really have much memory of "dashing through" the second half of Network Terminal or Metropolitan Highway "like a maniac" and succeeding?

I would say it's true for most of the game though. Lots of kind of empty or "boost through enemy" areas in this game than any before it by a large margin.

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21 minutes ago, Blue Blood said:

There's actually nothing inherently wrong with this. It applies to the majority of Unleashed, Generations and Colours as well, and the very point of the boost system being implemented the way that it has been for the past 9 years is so that you can almost all of the time. Forces' level and control design is bad because they require that you do little more than press boost a lot of the time, but the levels accommodating near-constant boosting doesn't mean that they have to be bad.

How many areas in unleashed do you boost down whole paths without falling off the stage, hitting an enemy you can't boost, or a wall/object?

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It kinda makes sense to me that they’d go for that design philosophy. A whole lot of people like to criticize Sonic games every time they’re expected to go slow, or they get hit by an enemy, or they die. Ever see the Game Grumps play a Sonic game? They complain, like, every time they’re not going fast. And, apparently, they’re actually enjoying Forces right now.

So, while designing levels that require no effort to complete may be super pandering and kinda boring for us, it may also be a valid way to get the casuals interested.

Or maybe not, I’m just guessing here.

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16 minutes ago, EdsonBubsy said:

How many areas in unleashed do you boost down whole paths without falling off the stage, hitting an enemy you can't boost, or a wall/object?

The whole philosophy of the boost formula is how long can you keep the Boost on. Is not about gaining speed but maintaining it, using whatever means possible, that includes avoiding enemies you can't boost using the quick step or using the drift to avoid falling of the stage.

While some levels are better than others at doing this, the mentality is still there. Forces still has it it just doesn't do anything interesting with it.

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3 minutes ago, redhellc said:

The whole philosophy of the boost formula is how long can you keep the Boost on. Is not about gaining speed but maintaining it, using whatever means possible, that includes avoiding enemies you can't boost using the quick step or using the drift to avoid falling of the stage.

While some levels are better than others at doing this, the mentality is still there. Forces still has it it just doesn't do anything interesting with it.

Eh it's also to be able to take advantage of the terrain and avoid obstacles, as well as learning how to platform at high speeds (especially for high ranks.)

Or it was anyway.

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3 minutes ago, EdsonBubsy said:

Eh it's also to be able to take advantage of the terrain and avoid obstacles, as well as learning how to platform at high speeds (especially for high ranks.)

Or it was anyway.

I don't see how that goes against anything I said, yes the Boost can be used as tool just like all the other skills to help you traverse obstacles. That said it still is the primary focus of the gameplay and just because there are specific moments in the levels where you have to use it that doesn't take mean the rest of the level isn't created thinking you have the ability to do it at any time. In the fact the sheer abundance of rings in the levels of Unleashed just shows that the team really wanted the player to always be able to Boost or keep Boosting.

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11 hours ago, EdsonBubsy said:

How many areas in unleashed do you boost down whole paths without falling off the stage, hitting an enemy you can't boost, or a wall/object?

Loads. Every stage in Unleashed, apart from maybe Eggmanland, has sections where all you need to do is boost and you don't need to worry about the path ahead. However, those sections are intertwined with areas where you do need more input and involvement whilst boosting, be it through timed homing attacks, drifting, split paths, quick stepping, or simply trying to maintain control. You can boost through almost the entirety of every stage in Unleashed (and Generations), but the design encourages you to do more. There are more incentives for playing better. Forces takes away a lot of the involvement you have and leaves you with little to do except boost.

I'm really not a fan of the boost gameplay In Unleashed and Generations. Forces only manages to regress the gameplay into something even worse. But the Focus being "boost as much as possible" doesn't have to be bad. The reason it's bad is because Sonic Team is fairly incompetent. They manage to botch just about any concept.

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3 hours ago, Mayor D said:

Am I the only one who really wants the full context of this line?

Nope. Especially given the track record of the OP in regards to not citing sources or not citing good sources. TSSZ, while not a bad place to go, also has a track record of stating rumors as fact or giving an innocuous statement a twist that makes it controversial or exciting for publicity. The linked example was the best I could find on the matter-- it comes from an incident on NeoGaf where TSSZ spread a rumor that there would be a new Sonic game announced in a stream-- it never materialized nor did Sega really do much to hint at it materializing. Apparently Sonic fans were not happy. If you're still off Neogaf, as I imagine many are, be reassured that this links to a cached snapshot of Neogaf and so clicking it will not log any views on NeoGaf itself. In short, if something TSSZ is claiming has barely any sources; what sources are cited are either difficult to track down, don't contain any direct confirmation, and/or are extremely vague; and/or is highly speculative, its best to be treated as fan speculation or something taken out of context until more reliable sources confirm it.

I looked up the NHK world interview for Shun Nakamura, and the best I could find was a brief from Sonic JP News saying that there is a stream planned for discussion Sonic Forces on November 28 from 00:30 - 00:58 (UTC), or 9:30PM to 9:58PM in Japan time.

It looks like it has already passed and I cannot find any recordings of the stream to confirm anything. Should be noted though that 30 minutes isn't a very long time to discuss the detailed intricacies of Sonic Forces's design philosophy, although that is not surprising given that Sonic didn't catch nearly as much as it did in the West in Japan. According to the TSSZ source, the interviewers were really bad at Forces too, so the "you just boost" line could have been him at a loss at how to explain something that's so obvious to him (though again, need confirmation of that too). Kind of like how I eventually gave up on my parents understanding the structure of Sonic Colors after several minutes of them just not getting basics like that when you touch something that makes you lose rings, do not continually walk into it, and if you go left and hit some kind of wall, do not keep going left.  So I just told them "Boost and jump when you see a hole and you win." That's actually a terrible strategy for Colors but at least my parents got further in the level doing that (though they somehow still could not beat the first level).

Anybody else see the stream and know Japanese, or have an archive that we can check out?

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Total non-issue here. All the boost formula games push you to get good enough at the game to the point where you rarely-if-ever have to take your finger off the boost trigger. Unleashed, Gens, all of them.

The only difference with Forces is that the stage design and removal of a few mechanics makes the learning curve to make it to that point pretty mild.

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I read that statement more to mean "we went for a more focused and tight game design where the player consistently retains a sense of speed" more so then a litteral "yeah, you  can brainlessly boost trough the game".

Ignoring Classic Sonic, Forces has a stronger consistent sense of speed then especially Sonic Colors did. Even Classic Sonic didn't slow the game down as much as the Werehog, Hubs, puzzle Wisps and Lost World's reliances on battles did. Altough whether it's faster and more tight then Generations is debatable.

And whether this is necesairely a good thing is another, personally I don't mind the occasonal dip in speed and action here and there.
It's just not feasable to keep that kind of relentless energy going, there's a reason the more "pure" Sonic games rarely last longer then an hour or two.
But that's me and as Kellan said about the Gamegrumps, general audiences do expect Sonic games to be non stop hyper rollercoasters.

But yeah, I would also love to see the full context of the quote, altough I doubt they'll go indepth in game design. I never get the impression that the Japanese are open about production technicalities.

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11 hours ago, Rusty Spy said:

So they admit they're lazy hacks. So tell me again where they get off charging money for this shit?

Because that's not really what they're saying, and that quote is kinda been taken out of context by an OP with pretty spotty fact checking. No matter how much you may hate the game,  don't let it cloud your judgment too much. 

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I think saying "was intentionally designed for you to boost to the end of the level" is more of an opportunistic jab at Sega then an actual understanding of the quote. 

Surely he meant the Modern Stages were designed so you can boost easily through a level as an alternative gameplay option. Which makes sense since normal mode is for newcomers in the first place, and most of them will probably be boosting through stages the first playthrough as they get used to the controls.

This however doesn't fix the issues with classic Sonic.

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10 hours ago, Roger_van_der_weide said:

But that's me and as Kellan said about the Gamegrumps, general audiences do expect Sonic games to be non stop hyper rollercoasters.

Just to add to this, Yahtzee of Zero Punctuation just put out his review of Sonic Forces. He complained that it’s too easy to die as Modern Sonic.

I think that Sonic Team might end up making the next game even easier at this rate.

Edit: Also VideoGameDunkey complained about dying too much. He even showed clips of him repeatedly dying in a section that will literally play itself if you just hold down the boost button. I think the lesson Sonic Team might take from all this is to make it impossible to die. That would be the wrong lesson to take, but I could see Sonic Team taking it.

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1 hour ago, Kellan said:

Just to add to this, Yahtzee of Zero Punctuation just put out his review of Sonic Forces. He complained that it’s too easy to die as Modern Sonic.

I think that Sonic Team might end up making the next game even easier at this rate.

The problem isn't difficulty; It's cheap difficulty.

I think a legitimately challenging Sonic game would be wonderful. But when the player dies, they should feel like it's their fault, not the game's. If you're dying all the time due to bad level design and bad controls, then the game is hard for the wrong reasons. 

It's not that Sonic Team needs to make their games easier; They need to make them better, so that the challenge feels fair.

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The game is already extremely easy and automated. If they hear that people are still having trouble with dying to fast they're probably not going to see it as an issue with the controls and level design. They'll most likely think they made it too legitimately challenging or something.

Next game Sonic's going to be on a literal tether or leash when he rounds corners and makes jumps over pits. And people will still die in their 2D sections somehow because the acceleration is off.

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8 minutes ago, Dr. Detective Mike said:

The game is already extremely easy and automated. If they hear that people are still having trouble with dying to fast they're probably not going to see it as an issue with the controls and level design. They'll most likely think they made it too legitimately challenging or something.

Next game Sonic's going to be on a literal tether or leash when he rounds corners and makes jumps over pits. And people will still die in their 2D sections somehow because the acceleration is off.

Or, they finally include other character sections to round out the gameplay and make things easy as pie.

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