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Sonic Mania: Version 1.04 and Plus DLC PS4 Leaks (SPOILERS)

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52 minutes ago, ThinksButNoThanks said:

  Hey there, first time here! So, over at Sonic Retro there was discussion about Angel Island's grass redesign. Personally, I don't mind the change, but here's one I absolutely DO mind : Hydrocity's background change. As in the strange choice to give Act 1 the Act 2 background and vise versa. This change still confuses me to this day, and I can't play the stage anymore without thinking about it.

In the original Hydrocity, I felt that there was a sense of progression with the backgrounds, how you first have the light purple colors and candles, with the giant windows that make you feel like you're just entering a new area, then in Act 2 you have the cool dark purple and green colors, along with the removal of the windows and you now feel like you're going deep into the ruins. Now, something feels off when I go from that beautiful should-be-act-2 background to the one that, for the lack of a better description, feels like an Act 1.

Like I said, I really don't understand this change and I can no longer play this stage without noticing. I haven't really seen this get brought up, so I'm wondering if anyone else feels the same way as I do.
 

Hydrocity is a weird zone for Sonic Mania.

But have you ever thought about how Act 1 had all the new gimmicks and was completely different while Act 2 was more-or-less like the original?
That's the exact reverse as to what all the other stages do. Act 1 is typically very similar, and Act 2 is where things switch up.

The reason for this, as from what seems most logical, is that you are traversing Hydrocity in REVERSE. Think about it, Mirage Saloon begins on the Tornado. Where was the Tornado last seen? In Angel Island Zone. If you are deep within Hydrocity Zone, to reach the Tornado you need to traverse Hydrocity in Reverse to reach Angel Island Zone.

You started in the deep parts of Hydrocity (imagine it like it would be a Sonic 3 Hydrocity Act 3 if there was one), thus all the fancy gimmicks/the Act 2 background/etc. Then you progress and reach the end of the act. The battle arena is very similar to that of the end of "act 2 of Sonic 3". After the battle you start up the next act. You have now traversed into the "original Act 2 from Sonic 3" section of Hydrocity. This means you are closer and closer to the "entrance" of Hydrocity. You are nearing the original "act 1" and the background now changed to represent that: You are traversing Hydrocity from "Deep within" TOWARDS Angel Island Zone. You will even realize that the second half of Hydrocity Act 2 is nearly identical. Then when fighting the "Zone Boss" of Hydrocity, you are going down a long long pathway. This eventually (upon defeat) lands you into the "Act 1 Miniboss" arena. That's because your "reverse" traversal through Hydrocity has now brought you from Act 2 towards the original "Act 1". Then the transition between Hydrocity and Mirage Saloon makes sense (but should be visibly shown), that you get out of the entrance of Hydrocity to reach Angel Island Zone so you can reach the Tornado.

Hydrocity Zone is (from the eyes of the Original Sonic 3) technically: Act 3 > Act 2 > Act 1 (Reverse)
Thus, to help convey that message the background start you with the "Deeper half" of the zone, then in the next act show the "Closer to the entrance" background.

Does that make sense?

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2 hours ago, Gemster312 said:

Hydrocity is a weird zone for Sonic Mania.

But have you ever thought about how Act 1 had all the new gimmicks and was completely different while Act 2 was more-or-less like the original?
That's the exact reverse as to what all the other stages do. Act 1 is typically very similar, and Act 2 is where things switch up.

The reason for this, as from what seems most logical, is that you are traversing Hydrocity in REVERSE. Think about it, Mirage Saloon begins on the Tornado. Where was the Tornado last seen? In Angel Island Zone. If you are deep within Hydrocity Zone, to reach the Tornado you need to traverse Hydrocity in Reverse to reach Angel Island Zone.

You started in the deep parts of Hydrocity (imagine it like it would be a Sonic 3 Hydrocity Act 3 if there was one), thus all the fancy gimmicks/the Act 2 background/etc. Then you progress and reach the end of the act. The battle arena is very similar to that of the end of "act 2 of Sonic 3". After the battle you start up the next act. You have now traversed into the "original Act 2 from Sonic 3" section of Hydrocity. This means you are closer and closer to the "entrance" of Hydrocity. You are nearing the original "act 1" and the background now changed to represent that: You are traversing Hydrocity from "Deep within" TOWARDS Angel Island Zone. You will even realize that the second half of Hydrocity Act 2 is nearly identical. Then when fighting the "Zone Boss" of Hydrocity, you are going down a long long pathway. This eventually (upon defeat) lands you into the "Act 1 Miniboss" arena. That's because your "reverse" traversal through Hydrocity has now brought you from Act 2 towards the original "Act 1". Then the transition between Hydrocity and Mirage Saloon makes sense (but should be visibly shown), that you get out of the entrance of Hydrocity to reach Angel Island Zone so you can reach the Tornado.

Hydrocity Zone is (from the eyes of the Original Sonic 3) technically: Act 3 > Act 2 > Act 1 (Reverse)
Thus, to help convey that message the background start you with the "Deeper half" of the zone, then in the next act show the "Closer to the entrance" background.

Does that make sense?

Yes! This actually makes alot of sense and I appreciate the time you put into your post!

It seems that everything you said is most likely the case, but of course it isn't conveyed all too well in game due to the lack of zone transitions. Although I do enjoy some of the new gimmicks in Act 1 like the boat (which I didn't initially realize made you go faster the closer you are to the edge), the rest of the new stuff feels like it's actively slowing down the stage, which isn't all that fun considering I always viewed this place as the Chemical Plant of Sonic 3.I also feel that Act 2 is just missing that new and creative edge that makes other returning zones like Chemical Plant so much fun. Even fellow Sonic 3 zones Flying Battery and Lava Reef feel like they made the right changes so that their different enough from the original, but still just as, if not MORE fun.

And related to this stage being "weird", as you mentioned, I also feel that some iconic moments of spectacle from the original are gone. In the original Act 1 when after you go through the wind tunnel at the beginning, you burst through the wall and go flying in the air and Sonic is just like WAAHHHH! only to fall back in the water again. And of course Act 2 with it's infamous wall chase in the beginning, who could forget that? Other stages in the game still seem to keep the memorable moments that made the so iconic, so I feel Hydrocity got the short end of the stick.

And of course, the slide animation was missing at launch but I guess that was due to time constraints, seeing as how it's been brought back in the leaked update. I'd also like if you always started the stage falling like in the original, but now I'm probably starting to sound nitpicky.

All in all, I feel like compared to other returing zones in this game, such as Chemical Plant, Flying Battery, and even Green Hill, something just feels off about this zone, like they could have been a little riskier with Act 2 (and kept it's background, I mean the story implications like you mentioned are pretty vague in game so it probably wouldn't matter) and added more gimmicks from other, possibly non water zones, and made Act 1 a little faster overall.

So that's basically it for this "rant" of sorts. It may come across as nitpicky, but this zone in particular is important to me, and I've been needing to get this off my chest for some time, so hopefully you understand how I feel about this zone. ?

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53 minutes ago, ThinksButNoThanks said:

Yes! This actually makes alot of sense and I appreciate the time you put into your post!

It seems that everything you said is most likely the case, but of course it isn't conveyed all too well in game due to the lack of zone transitions. Although I do enjoy some of the new gimmicks in Act 1 like the boat (which I didn't initially realize made you go faster the closer you are to the edge), the rest of the new stuff feels like it's actively slowing down the stage, which isn't all that fun considering I always viewed this place as the Chemical Plant of Sonic 3.I also feel that Act 2 is just missing that new and creative edge that makes other returning zones like Chemical Plant so much fun. Even fellow Sonic 3 zones Flying Battery and Lava Reef feel like they made the right changes so that their different enough from the original, but still just as, if not MORE fun.

And related to this stage being "weird", as you mentioned, I also feel that some iconic moments of spectacle from the original are gone. In the original Act 1 when after you go through the wind tunnel at the beginning, you burst through the wall and go flying in the air and Sonic is just like WAAHHHH! only to fall back in the water again. And of course Act 2 with it's infamous wall chase in the beginning, who could forget that? Other stages in the game still seem to keep the memorable moments that made the so iconic, so I feel Hydrocity got the short end of the stick.

And of course, the slide animation was missing at launch but I guess that was due to time constraints, seeing as how it's been brought back in the leaked update. I'd also like if you always started the stage falling like in the original, but now I'm probably starting to sound nitpicky.

All in all, I feel like compared to other returing zones in this game, such as Chemical Plant, Flying Battery, and even Green Hill, something just feels off about this zone, like they could have been a little riskier with Act 2 (and kept it's background, I mean the story implications like you mentioned are pretty vague in game so it probably wouldn't matter) and added more gimmicks from other, possibly non water zones, and made Act 1 a little faster overall.

So that's basically it for this "rant" of sorts. It may come across as nitpicky, but this zone in particular is important to me, and I've been needing to get this off my chest for some time, so hopefully you understand how I feel about this zone. ?

I completely agree with you. Hydrocity is my favorite zone in S3, and while I like the idea of going backwards through the zone, I feel like it could have been done much better, as it feels like a real let down compared to Chemical Plant, Flying Battery, and the other old zones which were incredibly creative. I always wish they used more fast paced gimmicks and stage mechanics like you mentioned. I had the idea of a water pressure gauge that launches you depending on when you press the button, or the loops from Death Egg Zone becoming made of bubbles and controllable. What if they even took the idea of the bubbles from the game Celeste and had them launch you quickly in the direction you chose.

Besides the gimmicks, act 2 is almost entirely the exact same zone. The beginning is different, but about 80 percent of the stage is a copy and paste. Along with more original level design, I also wish the music was better. The act 2 theme is still great, but after listening to Chemical Plant and Flying Battery act 2, a completely original song with hints of the original act 2 might have made for my favorite song on the entire soundtrack. Still hoping Mighty and Ray get their own Hydrocity act with its own music or it gets re-done in some way in plus, as it was very disappointing for me. This is one zone I really wish had gotten an act 3.

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4 hours ago, Psychicmoose103 said:

I completely agree with you. Hydrocity is my favorite zone in S3, and while I like the idea of going backwards through the zone, I feel like it could have been done much better, as it feels like a real let down compared to Chemical Plant, Flying Battery, and the other old zones which were incredibly creative. I always wish they used more fast paced gimmicks and stage mechanics like you mentioned. I had the idea of a water pressure gauge that launches you depending on when you press the button, or the loops from Death Egg Zone becoming made of bubbles and controllable. What if they even took the idea of the bubbles from the game Celeste and had them launch you quickly in the direction you chose.

Besides the gimmicks, act 2 is almost entirely the exact same zone. The beginning is different, but about 80 percent of the stage is a copy and paste. Along with more original level design, I also wish the music was better. The act 2 theme is still great, but after listening to Chemical Plant and Flying Battery act 2, a completely original song with hints of the original act 2 might have made for my favorite song on the entire soundtrack. Still hoping Mighty and Ray get their own Hydrocity act with its own music or it gets re-done in some way in plus, as it was very disappointing for me. This is one zone I really wish had gotten an act 3.

 

This speaks to me so much. One idea I had a while back was that maybe Act 2 gets frozen somehow, that way they could reference Icecap without having to bring it back, and make way for brand new gimmicks with the ice theme. Just imagine if Hydrocity 2 started with a frozen waterslide, and you snowboard all the way down like in the beginning of Icecap. All the ideas you gave sound like alot of fun, too. I always wondered how they could bring back the Death Egg warp tube thing. I still have yet to play Celeste, but it looks really good so I'm going to have to play that soon. Good thing you mentioned the music as well, I almost forgot about that. I agree that an original theme could be really great, especially if it had bits of the old one mixed in. But at the same time I wasn't the biggest fan of some of CD remixes in this game. 

Pretty much, as I already stated I just wish this stage did more new things in the vein of CPZ and FBZ, just a little a little more creative.

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I discovered something totally unexpected in the 1.04 version of Mania this morning. Whilst I was checking to see whether you could now play any special stage using sound-test in level-select, I also discovered that Sonic Mania Plus will feature SEVEN BRAND-NEW "CATCH THE UFO" SPECIAL STAGES!!!

I played sound-test "07" in level select out of curiosity to see if there was an unused 8th special stage (which there isn't as far as I'm aware) and ended up in a special stage with a new layout but with the (black) background of the original 7th special stage....

All new special stages have completely new lay-outs.

The first (and so called) easiest special stage has the background of the original seventh special stage. The second special stage has the background of the original sixth special stage. The third new ss has the background of the original fifth ss. You get the idea........and the seventh (and final) new ss has the background of the very first special stage.

You can play the new special stages via level select by inputting "07", "08", "09", "0A", "0B", "0C" and "0D" respectively

When I briefly played these this morning they seemed a bit intimidating, but I got a chance to play them again this evening. I got used to them and I've managed to beat all seven new special stages! I've recorded my playthrough.


When I played the new special stages I beat the 1st, 3rd and 4th at first attempt, but I needed quite a few attempts to beat the others.

In the video I play the first new special stage. I skipped the second special stage because it was giving me trouble. I then beat the third, fourth, fifth, sixth and seventh special stages. I then went back and beat the second special stage.
 


I think we can safely assume the seven new special stages will be playable in Mania Plus Encore mode. 

I have no idea what the reward will be for beating all seven new special stages. Maybe Hyper forms??? 

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Man they've definitely upped the difficulty compared to the original set. As much as I'd prefer if Hyper forms continued to not exist, I'd say you deserve them for finishing all of these stages.

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48 minutes ago, TheOcelot said:

I have no idea what the reward will be for beating all seven new special stages. Maybe Hyper forms??? 

 

18 minutes ago, Diogenes said:

Man they've definitely upped the difficulty compared to the original set. As much as I'd prefer if Hyper forms continued to not exist, I'd say you deserve them for finishing all of these stages.

IF Hyper forms come back again, then I must say... we are ready for Round 2 :D 

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I just watched the video. Holy shit those special stages look REALLY hard. I hope we get a reward for completing them.

Maybe Super Emeralds?

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Just now, Parax said:

I just watched the video. Holy shit those special stages look REALLY hard. I hope we get a reward for completing them.

Maybe Super Emeralds?

Though I highly dought they are going to be in the game in any capacity, I kinda want that too.

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4 hours ago, Ashwalking Bat said:

Though I highly dought they are going to be in the game in any capacity, I kinda want that too.

 

They technically are in the game in some capacity.

https://tcrf.net/Sonic_Mania/Unused_Graphics#Blue_Spheres

There's some precedent for Super Emeralds being added, some unused animations ended up being used:

ab7157df4ce9fd04481de52b4239e0385f05414d

SonicMania-Tails1x_fixed.gif

( Or reworked in the case of Miles )

I do doubt they'll be used though.

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Just discovered that Sonic 2's All Emerald cheat has been put back in for 1.04. As a bonus, the playstyle of ERZ can be played in regular stages now. This does not work on any previous version of Mania.

 

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14 hours ago, MainJP said:

 

They technically are in the game in some capacity.

https://tcrf.net/Sonic_Mania/Unused_Graphics#Blue_Spheres

There's some precedent for Super Emeralds being added, some unused animations ended up being used:

ab7157df4ce9fd04481de52b4239e0385f05414d

SonicMania-Tails1x_fixed.gif

( Or reworked in the case of Miles )

I do doubt they'll be used though.

Ah okay. I honestly wasn't sure if the Super Emeralds were ever a consideration, but it seems that they were sometime during development. Oh well. Even if they will not appear in the Encore update, here's hoping they make a return in Mania Plus. I really would get a kick out of playing the Hyper forms again.

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27 minutes ago, MainJP said:

I'll be posting this here from Retro.

This doesn't really sound like the Sonic 3 miniboss theme? I hear Quick! Escape! from SEGASonic The Hedgehog.

 

Oh yeah, forgot to mention this. To get the music to play after freeing Ray or Mighty you have to use an extra life-box (or something similar) to cause the previous music to stop and this new track to start playing.

But yeah, it's definitely a remix of "Quick! Escape!"

Without a doubt it's the new track listed on the Mania-Plus Jp physical soundtrack release: as "Back In Action - Mighty & Ray Cutscene".

19 hours ago, ScarlyNight said:

Just discovered that Sonic 2's All Emerald cheat has been put back in for 1.04. As a bonus, the playstyle of ERZ can be played in regular stages now. This does not work on any previous version of Mania.

The original debug-mode code from Sonic 2; 01, 09, 09, 02, 01, 01, 02, 04 also now works in level select.

You no longer have to enable debug-mode to access level select via a no-save file.

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On 5/24/2018 at 4:44 PM, Parax said:

I just watched the video. Holy shit those special stages look REALLY hard. I hope we get a reward for completing them.

Maybe Super Emeralds?

Also, could we also get some equally difficult new Bonus Stages? Maybe one of these is used to unlock Amy? 

 

And what if Sonic could use the Ruby to transform? 

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6 hours ago, Miragnarok said:

Also, could we also get some equally difficult new Bonus Stages? Maybe one of these is used to unlock Amy? 

 

And what if Sonic could use the Ruby to transform? 

To what ?

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Just did some gifs of the Knuckles Encore palette footage shown-off at the end of ep3 from Mania Adventures.

We can see Green Hill, Flying Battery & Chemical Plant in the first gif:

giphy.gif

 

In the second gif there's more of GH and some of the new act1 for Mirage Saloon. From what I've played of the new act1 it looks like Knuckles will be playing through the same new act as Sonic, Tails (and of course Mighty or Ray as Knuckles partner):

giphy.gif

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Just done some gifs (wish i could make them bigger) of the Encore footage from Mania Adventures Ep4:

Ray:

giphy.gif

I like how Ray does a kind of summersault (uses his tail) as he moves across the hanging monkey-bars in Flying Battery. It's a reference to SEGASonic Arcade (credit to @Sonictrainer for spotting this):

tumblr_p7qkqqY7ug1w1kerio2_500.gif

 

Mighty:

giphy.gif

 

Just 25 days until Mania Plus releases!

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14 hours ago, TheOcelot said:

Just done some gifs (wish i could make them bigger) of the Encore footage from Mania Adventures Ep4:

Ray:

giphy.gif

I like how Ray does a kind of summersault (uses his tail) as he moves across the hanging monkey-bars in Flying Battery. It's a reference to SEGASonic Arcade (credit to @Sonictrainer for spotting this):

tumblr_p7qkqqY7ug1w1kerio2_500.gif

 

Mighty:

giphy.gif

 

Just 25 days until Mania Plus releases!

Flying Battery looks rusted when Mighty is inside. And Chemical Plant’s colors look more cold... a tip of the hat to the game’s uncle? And speaking of this episode, there appears to be what looks like the “Death Egg Sigma” at the center of Angel Island where the characters are converging.

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Looks like during the birthday stream yesterday they showcased a full run-through of Green Hill Zone act 1 in 4-player competitive:

The gameplay begins around 50:30 

It looks like Mighty's shell is so strong that landing on spikes will in ball form results in a BOUNCE rather than damage. Interesting :)

Sadly the player playing Ray really was bad so didn't get to see much there.

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Would anyone be interested in a stream of Mania Plus on PS4 using the "Broadcast Gameplay" feature when I grab my copy? Got screwed over having to wait for the American release time on Steam for Mania's original release, but I'll be grabbing a physical PS4 copy of Mania Plus which means I'll get it a day early due to timezones etc being in New Zealand.

If everyone's happy waiting for their copy then I won't bother streaming, tho I may post any interesting pics and info I find out during my play through if people are happy with spoilers etc.

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