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Edgy Sonic games were better?

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Like most seem to be saying here, I don't really give much of a shit about "light" and "dark". The best stories, at least to me, work when they take you through a range of emotion. Sadness is more effective when you're aware of what the good and happy times were. The funny, comedic moments work better when you're aware of what it felt like seeing characters suffer through drama. Any continuing conversation that says we should choose between the two as far as Sonic is concerned is one I'm going to immediately have less respect for. I'm not saying leaning towards one side over the other can't work. A pure comedy is fine. Maybe a pure serious story could also be fine.

It just depends on how well it's written. We don't have anyone over there who either cares enough or knows enough about how to write for this series to make the tone a non-issue. Which it really is, ultimately. 

You know, for example, Sonic characters with guns isn't a problem. Tails, Eggman, and Omega use projectile weapons all the time  but the manner in which the concept is utilized is why something like Shadow the Hedgehog looks so ridiculous. You know. When you imagine Eggman using a gun you don't imagine him whipping out an AK-47 and mowing people down with it... though that does sound pretty cool.

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10 hours ago, Strickerx5 said:

Eh, 36 seconds in and I'm already hit with a red flag. ST has seen... substantial staff changes; in the last decade alone even. Sure a few staff and even a few key ones have stuck around but other than that... the ST we have now is completely different from what we had even as late as Gens. They are a literal revolving door nowadays for the industry.

A few other factual errors aside... they were kind of all over the place with their points in this video. Though, I do fully agree that I'd like to see a return to the 2000s styled narratives rather than what we've been getting recently. As to the reason why the 2000s games are more of a highlight for me in this area rather than the more recent ones, imo, seems to be due to ambition rather than tone.

Honestly, this isn't a question of a "dark" or "light" plot. It's more of wanting them to actually give me something to care about. Whether it's coming from the doom of some monster threatening to destroy the planet or a simple trip to the grocery, you have to have a narrative that makes someone care about the circumstances. The 2000s games mostly succeed in this because there was a clear drive to tell those stories. The production values were there and things rarely felt gimped due to lack of trying. None of this stand in a box and talk crap that these current games love to fall back on. It's only really a coincidence the 2000s games were more dark in tone for the most part.

Tone rarely matters. The actual narrative, how the characters are portrayed, written, and animated do. The 2000s games simply put more effort into all of that (and a number of other aspects). A number of those games offered a full package. Simply can't say that any Sonic game after 2009 has done that for me. In that sense, I do wish that era of the series would return.

From the very beginning, this series built itself on being more than your average platformer. I absolutely can't stand how things have been going in the opposite direction for the last decade.

Hit the nail on the head. I cared about Tails’s self-esteem in Sonic Adventure when I played it last, even as I laughed at the clumsy presentation. I cared when Eggman tricked Sonic and launched his ass into space (which remains the smartest writing in the games thus far). I cared about Gamma’s moral awakening. There are problems - huge problems - even in the best game stories, but one thing they’re distinctly better at than anything since 2009, is getting the player to give a shit. I MIGHT have cared about the Wisps in Sonic Colors if their plight was treated more seriously than just “D’awh, don’t worry little buddy, we’ll kick Baldy McNosehair’s butt!” I might have cared about the Deadly Six if they actually had any motivation or backstory whatsoever. I might have cared about the fate of the damn world in Forces if the writing conveyed any conviction that Eggman’s conquest actually happened. And so on. Forces in particular is proof that it’s not just tone that doesn’t really matter; the stakes can be as high as possible and that doesn’t matter either. It’s about telling a story with a tangible conflict with earnestly portrayed characters that feel like they actually inhabit their world.

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I'm going to be 100% honest when I say this: I'm really starting to hate the word "edgy" when it's being used to describe Sonic games. I hope I don't sound like I'm point fingers at anybody or sounding accusatory, I promise I don't mean to give off that vibe. I probably don't even know what I'm talking about. I just feel it's a word that gets thrown around a lot without a whole lot of meaning being given to it. It's sort of this general term that so many people use without really defining it well. I also feel it's overused, kind of like how a lot of people throw around the word "cringe."

11 hours ago, Strickerx5 said:

Honestly, this isn't a question of a "dark" or "light" plot. It's more of wanting them to actually give me something to care about. Whether it's coming from the doom of some monster threatening to destroy the planet or a simple trip to the grocery, you have to have a narrative that makes someone care about the circumstances. The 2000s games mostly succeed in this because there was a clear drive to tell those stories. The production values were there and things rarely felt gimped due to lack of trying. None of this stand in a box and talk crap that these current games love to fall back on. It's only really a coincidence the 2000s games were more dark in tone for the most part.

Tone rarely matters. The actual narrative, how the characters are portrayed, written, and animated do. The 2000s games simply put more effort into all of that (and a number of other aspects). A number of those games offered a full package. Simply can't say that any Sonic game after 2009 has done that for me. In that sense, I do wish that era of the series would return.

 I can't emphasize how much I agree with this. Honestly, I'm starting not to like the term "dark" as well. I mean, I think we can all agree that Shadow the Hedgehog running around with guns shooting everything and yelling curses maybe crossed a few boundaries. But other than that, what is "dark" exactly in the Sonic series? I absolutely agree with "dark" or "light" aren't the main issues with Sonic plots nowadays. I'm not saying that it's okay for Sonic to go around and suddenly start emphasizing murder and having plots that have things like, I don't know, realistic genocide or gritty guerrilla warfare like Apocalypse Now. It's just all about the passion and drive the story and characters makes you feel. It's one of the reasons why I liked the story and characters in the 2000s games. Yeah, they weren't perfectly and were heavily flawed in a lot of places, but I at least felt drive and passion from the stories and characters, like the things they were striving for mattered (if that makes sense?). That's why I don't like how these arguments always delve into the same "kiddy / edgy / dark / light" back and forth. To me, those words just feel empty. They're just thrown out because they're so generalized. They don't really go into the actual problems and flaws that should be discussed. It's like the moment a certain aspect is shown, the game is immediately slapped with some kind of superficial label without any more digging into how these aspects work in relation to the story and characters and why they feel that way.

17 hours ago, Sonic Fan J said:

It's been a common problem that I've seen complained about with other long running series is that eventually the stories start being told from the meta instead of written using internal logic. Sonic no longer reacts to the events of the narrative from the traits that inform his character but by his current reputation out of universe. The stories feel presented so tongue in cheek that they lack any gravitas or sincerity. As much as I prefer Sonic as an Action Adventure series versus being an Action Comedy series, even Mania Adventures which more toed the line between was able to stay sincere and earnest with the story it aimed to tell by using in universe elements to carry the story and characters rather than letting the meta and memes dictate the narrative. The earnest and genuine affect that left most people praising the show with many saying that is what Sonic should be and what SEGA should push for. It wasn't a matter of tone or story content, but how it was executed and whether or not it stayed truthful to the characters from an in universe perspective rather than the characters' out of universe and meta reputations.

Also absolutely agree with this. I wondered if it was just me who was feeling this way, haha. The stories definitely feel more meta and tongue-in-cheek lately. I mean, I know that's not always a bad thing, and I know that Sonic's personality is that he's a wise-cracker and a funny guy...but I hate the feeling of everything being a joke. It's like nothing is being taken seriously. If nothing is being taken seriously, why should anyone care? Why should I care about Eggman taking over the world or Eggman about to crush Sonic into smithereens when everything is just passed off as some kind of joke and something that should constantly be laughed at?

It doesn't matter (in my opinion, anyways) if something may seem cartoonish and childish as long as the characters feel sincere and earnest (if you don't mind me stealing some of your word choice @Sonic Fan J, haha). And I'm not even talking about it being "dark" or "edgy" or even "serious". In Mario Odyssey, the plot is some giant turtle trying to marry a human woman who's less than half his size while some short Italian guy tries to get her back with the help of a talking hat. Yeah, it's pretty cartoony and sounds ridiculous, but it's not like Mario is making some self-aware joke every ten minutes and rolling his eyes about "Oh boy, here we go again" or "Oh gee, it's the almighty King Koopa Bowser, I'm so scared (heavy sarcastic tone)". Even in the end, Mario at least felt earnest in his mission. It felt like he really cared about what he was doing and why. Sonic stories don't really seem to have that anymore. Forces kind of improved on that, I guess...but there's still a lot of room for improvement.

 

I'm sorry if none of this makes sense, it's 3am where I'm when I'm typing this and I haven't slept in like 30 hours. 

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@TideKai I agree with you wholeheartedly about use of the word "edgy" and related derivatives. Edgy should only refer to things that are made to look dark and serious whilst maintaining a self-percieved image of cool to appeal to a demographic that wants to appear more mature than they are. As far as I'm concerned, only the series has only approached edginess on two occasions; the entirety of Shadow's game and the presence of Infinite in Forces. Even something like '06 is just a failed attempt at being epic as opposed to being even remotely edgy.

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Okay, sure. You guys are right about this. In the end, every story should let the viewer care about it. If the story can't hook you up, then if failed as a story. But... for this to happen the characters should either be layered (like in Life is Strange) or at least entertaining enough, to keep you interesting in watching the cutscenes (like with Conker's Bad Fur Day).

I'm not sure if Sonic as a series can really pull this off. Some of the stories can keep me at least entertained like with the SA games and the Storybook games, but only in a more ironic way. Like they are so bad, that they become really hilarious. The only story that really hooked me and where I felt for the characters, was Unleashed.

Personally, if they really want to make a caring story again, then I think Sonic Team should go with the Unleashed formula. The SA are more hilarious than deep, 06's story and those of the Storybook series do not feel like they belong in Sonic, Lost World's story is okay, but nothing special, very harmless and the ones from games like Forces are a complete mess and absolutely boring.

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A story doesn't "need" to make you care, that's sometimes just a bonus....

But people want stakes, tension, and character development...

You can have all of this without being "edgy"...

Seeing how it's used, you'd think being edgy makes people care less...

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20 hours ago, Rowl said:

I personally do not miss the overly edgy tone of the Sonic series. I can't take the characters seriously if they act so overly dramatic. Sonic is for me a series like Donkey Kong Country, Crash Bandicoot or Banjo. Something that is just lighthearted fun. I mean... the series is still about a big, blue, super fast, chili eating hedgehog with big feet and a 90s attitude that fights a mad, self absorbed, egg shaped scientist that wants to take over the world, only so he can build his own theme park on it. 

Why would someone ever take this concept and make it super dark and edgy? Also, Sonic Team and Sega never really went far enough to justified the edgy tone of the series. Like with SA2. The death of Maria is actually the trigger point of the whole story, but they barely showed us anything about Maria. How was her life before she meat Shadow and what did G.U.N. did to her body after they killed her? Did they used her body for weird experiments? Did they sold her organs to make a quick bug? Or did one of the G.U.N. soldiers stuffed her to a hatrack or to some ofter knick knack for one their summer homes?

Or the whole deal with Shadow the Hedgehog. It tried so hard to be super dark and edgy but still showed stuff like carnival levels, minor curse words, anime girls, and weapons that looked like toys. 

Nah, Sonic isn't made for stuff like this. This whole super serious tone is the reason why Sonic has become such a laughing stock in the first place.

More or less. Recall that Sonic is LARGELY modeled on the likes of Bugs Bunny and Felix the Cat. You have that Man of the Year short.

The Sonic cast should be silly but take the silliness seriously.

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5 hours ago, TideKai said:

But other than that, what is "dark" exactly in the Sonic series? I absolutely agree with "dark" or "light" aren't the main issues with Sonic plots nowadays. I'm not saying that it's okay for Sonic to go around and suddenly start emphasizing murder and having plots that have things like, I don't know, realistic genocide or gritty guerrilla warfare like Apocalypse Now. It's just all about the passion and drive the story and characters makes you feel. It's one of the reasons why I liked the story and characters in the 2000s games.

Funny you should say that. With moments in the story of Adventure 1, 2 and Unleashed, if you examine specific events, some horrible stuff must've happened but is never openly mentioned. Recall the Last story in Adventure 1, Chaos gets all the Chaos Emeralds and destroys Station Square. You could clearly see people living there lives peacefully as it happened. The likelihood of nobody dying is very slim. Sonic and Co could've reacted quickly to reduce the number of casualties, but it was never mentioned and we had no idea where the crowd was when they were cheering Sonic before the final battle.

With Adventure 2, when Eggman attacks Prison Island the second time, he arranges to blow up the whole place, Sonic only learned that while trying to escape and no evidence had suggested that G.U.N was aware of the bomb. That suggests once again, the possibility of mass casualties that are never mentioned. Unless the entire island was mechanised, which is actually possible when you consider the weapons that G.U.N use. At most, at least one person was on the island. The pilot of the "Flying Dog" who intercepted Rouge. Eggman's broadcast and the destruction of half the moon, should've caused mass panic which could include riots, looting, normal people going crazy over this very serious situation. They could've shown protestors demanding the president answer his threat if Sonic and Tails met him at the White House instead of a moving limousine. Of course, the mass panic would've gotten even worse when Gerald revealed his true plan, which based on how the scene plays out, was broadcast throughout the entire planet. While the stuff I've mentioned about Adventure 2 is mostly left uncertain, other horrible events seemed to be confirmed. Like Maria getting shot during the raid on the Ark, her sickness and Gerald's attempts to find a cure, and the fact that his entire confession was recorded in front of a firing squad.

Unleashed is more subtle, but you've gotta wonder what the ramifications of having the entire planet fragmented the way it was, had effected peoples lives. What if you happened to be standing on the wrong spot when the split first happened? Don't forget the large amount of dark monsters now walking around and attacking fox boys.

That's not to say any of what I suggested is canon. You could consider how these details were glossed over as bad writing, but I personally didn't mind. (Though I would've preferred that they at least kept the moon damaged in future titles.) Instead, they kept the pace going by focusing on the main threat and following Sonic in his attempt to stop it.

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10 hours ago, Dr. Detective Mike said:

Like most seem to be saying here, I don't really give much of a shit about "light" and "dark". The best stories, at least to me, work when they take you through a range of emotion. Sadness is more effective when you're aware of what the good and happy times were. The funny, comedic moments work better when you're aware of what it felt like seeing characters suffer through drama. Any continuing conversation that says we should choose between the two as far as Sonic is concerned is one I'm going to immediately have less respect for. I'm not saying leaning towards one side over the other can't work. A pure comedy is fine. Maybe a pure serious story could also be fine.

It just depends on how well it's written. We don't have anyone over there who either cares enough or knows enough about how to write for this series to make the tone a non-issue. Which it really is, ultimately. 

 

Exactly this, pretty much.

Case in point, Lost World was clearly going for that--started off lighthearted and chipper enough, but gradually trickling in darker elements and higher stakes as it progresses. Of course, because it did so in minimally reinforced, sparsely showcased, hamfisted, and/or whiplashy manners at points, it ultimately didn't come together very well.

8 hours ago, Whatever the WhoCares said:

I might have cared about the Deadly Six if they actually had any motivation or backstory whatsoever.

To be fair, they do have some of each, particularly the former. This catch is that it's so minimally exposited and barely developed that they're just a little beyond fun-sized.

7 hours ago, TideKai said:

Why should I care about Eggman taking over the world or Eggman about to crush Sonic into smithereens when everything is just passed off as some kind of joke and something that should constantly be laughed at?

To be fair to Forces, most of that story did take itself relatively serious enough. What explicit jokes I do remember is more banter between the characters, side comments, or if we're talking about the cutscene before the first boss fight with Infinite, Sonic being Sonic.

So I think it's more a case of people being prejudiced against the writing and voices of the last couple of games as well as wanting more out of the story in general.

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The title alone already misses the point to the degree that I don’t even need to bother watching the video, and I actually like edgier stories.

But that label in itself is not just a loaded term, it’s an incorrect one to use. 

And at this point I’m not sure what else to contribute here given that others have already said what I would’ve said: It’s not the tone, it’s the quality and execution.

We’ve already had darker plots that failed, and we’ve already had lighthearted plots that failed—so how are we still missing this point when devil’s in the detail that tone isn’t the problem?

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What generation made the word edgy. I do not know why but everytime i hear it or see it i cringe. If one thing sonic had over other platformers as a kid born at the start of the 90s ala 89 was that sonic was more story driven it was fun. By time adventure came out I was at that point of liking other games with more story driven focus like crash. Sonic adventure was amazing to me back in the day and people and game magazines were excited for it. And over the years with sa2, heroes, shadow, and 06 it was just a fun time. Sadly though things were cut, this is when sega stopped focusing on the games and started rushing them out the door or backing off key ideas such as Shadow being toned down to hit a E10 rating instead of the orginal older teen. 06 just being a massive piece of mess in the end was also sad. That game had a lot of hype around it from multiple game sites from its first e3 demo and reveal. But then as usual with 3d games sega dropped the ball on everything and has yet to bring the series back to high standards unless its 2d.  I still have hope sega can bring the 3d series one day as something great but for now its just meh. Such as the watered down racing game coming out. They just dont seem to want to put much money into sonic as they know the name alone will still sell.  Its why instead of new gaming news or things of that nature all Segas twitter does is pump out memes

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Dark or light, simple or complicated - doesn’t matter. What matters is executing on the chosen direction.

As three examples of good Sonic stories, I’d give Adventure 2, S3&K and the Mania Adventures christmas special. Obviously they vary in tone and complexity, but they commit to an idea and do them well from a storytelling perspective. Adventure 2 is great because it continues the character development from the first one and has a natural mixture of light and dark. S3&K is great because it manages to convey a continuous world and the struggles of its characters through animation, backgrounds and music. The Mania Adventures episode is great because it puts the characters in a strange situation, yet keeps them in-character.

Obviously none of the examples are perfect stories, but the pieces of the perfect Sonic narrative are there. They’re just spread all across the franchise and never really come together. I think the status quo is too damaged to be invested in at this point, but with a reboot (maybe a semi-reboot starting from after SA2), they may have another shot.

From the classic games: Don’t overexplain things when a non-verbal cue would suffice.

From the Adventure games: Make characters somewhat multifaceted, give them character development and let them keep said development across games. (And have some cheesy monents like the faker exhange, as long as they don’t distract from the overall story.)

From the classics and Adventures: Build a consistent, believable world with a bit of a unique flair to every major location. Use dark and light elements wisely to get the setting and characterizations across. Let characters react appropriately to events.

From the modern era (mostly talking Boom and Mania Adventures): Make relations like Sonic and Tails’ friendship feel genuine. Give the characters some cute downtime moments (NOT in the middle of the action).

It’s just so frustrating to see each individual element right there, but to only have a few being used at a time.

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It's the sincerity and the need to actually wanting to tell a story they've thought up for their universe is what got me siding with old SEGA.

Even with all the "way out there" ideas like the government actually knocking on Sonic's door and arresting him,  as crazy as that is, I won't lie and say I'd rather have that than whatever happened in Sonic Forces, even if a simple story of Eggman taking over the world with a new animal buddy is more grounded and more in line with Sonic's lore..... Based on the context of where both these story telling ideas are coming from and how they were delivered, one side still ends up feeling like an art form being expressed and is trying to push what Sonic and the rest can be, while the other still ends up feeling like a focus group only following guidelines to what Sonic and the rest are allowed to be.

I have a lot of problems with how Sonic's being written nowadays, but basically whatever the writers were delivering since Colors, they just play it too safe for me these days, and I feel like them seemingly wanting me to scream and shout "Yeah! Finally! This is what Sonic's supposed to be like!" for many games straight shouldn't be the end goal for a platformer that clearly wanted to be so much more on the writing front.

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This kinda reminds me of my opinion on DreamWorks movies. As bad as the 2000s films were, they at least had a strong distinct identity in terms of shading, humor, voices, music and textures. Today’s dreamworks films are trying to copy Illumination, and have less of a fun factor as a result.

 

In sonic’s case, I think even Mania, as back to basics as it is, has somewhat more in common with the current games tone wise than with the originals. Forces does feel a bit more sincere than Lost World, though I feel that it is clear that Sonic Team’s use of serious themes has atrophied from disuse over the years. 

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12 minutes ago, Miragnarok said:

This kinda reminds me of my opinion on DreamWorks movies. As bad as the 2000s films were, they at least had a strong distinct identity in terms of shading, humor, voices, music and textures. Today’s dreamworks films are trying to copy Illumination, and have less of a fun factor as a result.

 

Which ones now?

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3 hours ago, Miragnarok said:

Compare Shark Tale to Turbo, for instance...

What I'm saying is I haven't really been keeping up with Dreamworks movies enough to be able to think them up on the spot let alone compare them to Illumination.

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On 1/2/2019 at 2:36 AM, Blue Blood said:

@TideKai I agree with you wholeheartedly about use of the word "edgy" and related derivatives. Edgy should only refer to things that are made to look dark and serious whilst maintaining a self-percieved image of cool to appeal to a demographic that wants to appear more mature than they are. As far as I'm concerned, only the series has only approached edginess on two occasions; the entirety of Shadow's game and the presence of Infinite in Forces. Even something like '06 is just a failed attempt at being epic as opposed to being even remotely edgy.

I think you hit the nail right on the head. I feel edgy is one of those sort of "reflex words" that people see a certain aspect that they associate very strongly with something being edgy, and so they automatically slap that label on without really understanding why or looking into it beyond that. Eventually, anything that's even remotely in the ballpark of what is perceived to be edgy gets slapped with it as well. It's just a really shallow term, in my opinion.

I also think Daria's definition of edgy is a pretty good one, too.

On 1/2/2019 at 8:08 AM, -dan- said:

Funny you should say that. With moments in the story of Adventure 1, 2 and Unleashed, if you examine specific events, some horrible stuff must've happened but is never openly mentioned. Recall the Last story in Adventure 1, Chaos gets all the Chaos Emeralds and destroys Station Square. You could clearly see people living there lives peacefully as it happened. The likelihood of nobody dying is very slim. Sonic and Co could've reacted quickly to reduce the number of casualties, but it was never mentioned and we had no idea where the crowd was when they were cheering Sonic before the final battle.

With Adventure 2, when Eggman attacks Prison Island the second time, he arranges to blow up the whole place, Sonic only learned that while trying to escape and no evidence had suggested that G.U.N was aware of the bomb. That suggests once again, the possibility of mass casualties that are never mentioned. Unless the entire island was mechanised, which is actually possible when you consider the weapons that G.U.N use. At most, at least one person was on the island. The pilot of the "Flying Dog" who intercepted Rouge. Eggman's broadcast and the destruction of half the moon, should've caused mass panic which could include riots, looting, normal people going crazy over this very serious situation. They could've shown protestors demanding the president answer his threat if Sonic and Tails met him at the White House instead of a moving limousine. Of course, the mass panic would've gotten even worse when Gerald revealed his true plan, which based on how the scene plays out, was broadcast throughout the entire planet. While the stuff I've mentioned about Adventure 2 is mostly left uncertain, other horrible events seemed to be confirmed. Like Maria getting shot during the raid on the Ark, her sickness and Gerald's attempts to find a cure, and the fact that his entire confession was recorded in front of a firing squad.

Unleashed is more subtle, but you've gotta wonder what the ramifications of having the entire planet fragmented the way it was, had effected peoples lives. What if you happened to be standing on the wrong spot when the split first happened? Don't forget the large amount of dark monsters now walking around and attacking fox boys.

That's not to say any of what I suggested is canon. You could consider how these details were glossed over as bad writing, but I personally didn't mind. (Though I would've preferred that they at least kept the moon damaged in future titles.) Instead, they kept the pace going by focusing on the main threat and following Sonic in his attempt to stop it.

Eh, I'm not a really big fan of the whole "fridge horror" thing. I mean, everything has fridge horror if you look at it a certain way or if you think too long about certain stuff. Mario is filled to the brim with fridge horror (and if you want, you can read them all on TVTropes). I think it's just a mixture of either writers not really thinking through or not putting too much priority on those types of things.

I think the only one that really counts to me is the Sonic Adventure 2 Battle one, and it's because it's not fridge horror. It's right there and clearly shown (and really did scare me a whole lot when I was a kid). And maaaybe the Sonic Adventure one, only because you can clearly see people going about their daily lives when Chaos floods the city. But I guess a post-credits scene where Sonic and Tails wade through a sea of corpses probably wouldn't be good, haha.

On 1/2/2019 at 9:01 AM, DabigRG said:

To be fair to Forces, most of that story did take itself relatively serious enough. What explicit jokes I do remember is more banter between the characters, side comments, or if we're talking about the cutscene before the first boss fight with Infinite, Sonic being Sonic.

I agree with you. I actually specifically pointed out Forces being an improvement in my post. I think the "torture" part is weird...and in all honesty, I think it's more of a weird choice of wording than Forces trying to be "edgy" or anything like that (seriously, replacing "torturing" with something like "imprisoning" or "mocking" seems to make a bit more sense and not make the scene come off as jarring as it does). I honestly sort of like the story of Forces, or at the very least where it tried to go with it. It was a concept I was very on board with. I didn't like the execution.

On 1/2/2019 at 9:01 AM, DabigRG said:

So I think it's more a case of people being prejudiced against the writing and voices of the last couple of games as well as wanting more out of the story in general.

I can't speak for anyone else, but for me personally it's definitely the latter part and not the former. I really enjoy the current voice cast. Some of them are even my favorite for the characters out of all the voice acting casts. But even so, the voices of the Sonic cast don't really effect how I see the story as long as they're not really awful performances. I really disliked the 4kids cast of voice actors (no offense to any of them, it's just personal preference) but it never really got in the way of how I played the game or saw the story, and I 

I'm also not exactly sure what you mean by "prejudiced against the writing." Do you mean against the current writers of the games, Pontac and Graff? My personal opinion of them isn't really based in prejudice. I've liked some of their ideas and I've disliked some of their ideas, but overall I'm not a really big fan of their execution of these ideas.

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Oh boy, it's this discussion again, the one that comes up, every time narrative is talked about in this series. Oh JOY!!! As you can probably tell, I've grown so very tired of this topic, if only because I always see the same responses from the same types of people and nobody ever agrees on anything.  But I'm not here to bore you with my cynicism. So you want my take?

"Light", "Dark", and "edgy" have become some of the biggest buzzwords I've seen in this series; people use them all of the time when describing things, but I will bet money nobody actually understands them beyond just seeing them as common words used to describe this series. "Sonic games should be "Edgy: and cool" "Sonic should be lighthearted and fun" All of that is meaningless. 

You wanna know the real reason this series struggles with it's tone and narrative? Because Sega are fickle as shit, and they change the story at the drop of a hat depending on where public opinion is at in that time period. But you wanna know the difference between then and now? Sega actually gave a shit back then, as misguided as they were. They were trying their damnest to keep Sonic relevant in the public eye and made numerous changes to the series in order to accomplish that.  Were some of those changes dumb and ultimately made things worse? Absolutely, but the main thing is that they were trying. They WANTED you to care.

But Sega sucks, so obviously those attempts were doomed because they don't know how to make a functional video game. Which led to Colors, the game that stripped everything down to the bare essentials to be a competent video game. No friends, Sonic Only,  Final Destination. And we loved it, everyone loved it. "A Sonic game that doesn't suck" we all thought, so naturally every game afterward would follow the same format of "No Friends, Sonic only, Final destination" because that's what we wanted right? And Sega always gives the fans what they want.  

But then one day we kind of realized "Man, these games are boring" because Sega doesn't try anymore with this series. They know Sonic will sell on his name alone at this point, so there's reason for them to put in any effort anymore. Even when they did, they cared more about "pleasing people" than just actually making sure their games were functional. This is why the writing has become so bad, its not because of some evil boogyman like Pontac or Graff, they're just there to collect a pay check. Its not because the writers suck. It's because Sega likely mandate these games to be "pleasing" than competent. 

That's the real reason we're where we are now; it's not because the series got "too dark" or "too light", it's because it's creators care less about making an engaging and cohesive narrative and more about making sure everyone likes their games. above anything else. Quantity over Quality basically.  Forces was "dark and edgy" and it was the same boring stuff we've been getting for about 10 years now. Even if I felt like Sega was trying with that game, I still don't think it would have been good, because Sega's focus isn't on making the games competent, it's just making them "pleasing to everyone".

So yea, the root issue here is just the absolute mishandling of the series.  Doesn't matter if we get another Sonic Adventure, doesn't matter if we got another Sonic Colors, because as long as Sega prioritize pleasing all audiences instead of making sure their games are functionally sound and entertaining, we're just gonna get more of the same at the end of the day. 

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34 minutes ago, TideKai said:

I think you hit the nail right on the head. I feel edgy is one of those sort of "reflex words" that people see a certain aspect that they associate very strongly with something being edgy, and so they automatically slap that label on without really understanding why or looking into it beyond that. Eventually, anything that's even remotely in the ballpark of what is perceived to be edgy gets slapped with it as well. It's just a really shallow term, in my opinion.

I also think Daria's definition of edgy is a pretty good one, too.

And that show came out when?

36 minutes ago, TideKai said:

 

I agree with you. I actually specifically pointed out Forces being an improvement in my post. I think the "torture" part is weird...and in all honesty, I think it's more of a weird choice of wording than Forces trying to be "edgy" or anything like that (seriously, replacing "torturing" with something like "imprisoning" or "mocking" seems to make a bit more sense and not make the scene come off as jarring as it does). I honestly sort of like the story of Forces, or at the very least where it tried to go with it. It was a concept I was very on board with. I didn't like the execution.

 

The torture was exclusive to the English localization. Which is a little bit of a shame, since that's apparently right up Zavok's alley anyway.

1 hour ago, TideKai said:

I honestly sort of like the story of Forces, or at the very least where it tried to go with it. It was a concept I was very on board with. I didn't like the execution.

Eh, I always believed they were biting off way more than they could reasonably chew the moment the whole "Win the War to take back Our World" aspect started gaining traction.

36 minutes ago, TideKai said:


I can't speak for anyone else, but for me personally it's definitely the latter part and not the former. I really enjoy the current voice cast. Some of them are even my favorite for the characters out of all the voice acting casts. But even so, the voices of the Sonic cast don't really effect how I see the story as long as they're not really awful performances

Oh, definitely.

 

1 hour ago, TideKai said:

I really disliked the 4kids cast of voice actors (no offense to any of them, it's just personal preference) but it never really got in the way of how I played the game or saw the story, and I 

Eh, I was pretty fine and/or happy with most of them, with the exception of Cream.

1 hour ago, TideKai said:

 

I'm also not exactly sure what you mean by "prejudiced against the writing." Do you mean against the current writers of the games, Pontac and Graff? 

Yes. 

There have been people who seem to not only disapprove of their work with Sonic on sight, but are also the types to hold odd priorities/grudges anyway.

1 hour ago, TideKai said:

My personal opinion of them isn't really based in prejudice. I've liked some of their ideas and I've disliked some of their ideas, but overall I'm not a really big fan of their execution of these ideas.

I've been wondering what the hell is happening with SEGA on that lately.

Lost World was the only game they came up with the story for(with the Deadly Six and possibly the Lost Hex being SonicTeam's contribution), but afterwards Forces notably had them kicked down to just helping with the localization of what the 06 guy already had approved.

Colors, on the otherhand, is a middleground where they had input with the various jokes and banter, but everything thing else was what was carried over from many preexisting scripts, which is likely why it is the most complete of their stories.

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16 minutes ago, DabigRG said:

And that show came out when?

1997 to 2002 in its original run. I haven't watched much of the show, but I found that clip after someone had used that Daria quote as a reference and thought it was pretty good. Truly great shows with great material are timeless, though.

18 minutes ago, DabigRG said:

The torture was exclusive to the English localization. Which is a little bit of a shame, since that's apparently right up Zavok's alley anyway.

Yeah, that's what I heard. It's definitely an...interesting word choice. I'm not sure what that exact word, especially with the connotations it carries. I don't know what the original Japanese sentence was, but I feel "imprisoning" or something like that would make more sense in that context, especially when you consider that Sonic seems to be fine and isn't acting like someone who had been put through a particularly rough time.

21 minutes ago, DabigRG said:

Eh, I always believed they were biting off way more than they could reasonably chew the moment the whole "Win the War to take back Our World" aspect started gaining traction.

Maybe. I personally think it's an idea with a lot of material to work with. There were certain parts I liked. The overall execution wasn't very good, but I still liked some of the ideas that were presented. I definitely think that at its base, it's not a bad idea. I like the idea of the cast having to band together in order to defeat a very powerful Eggman. 

42 minutes ago, DabigRG said:

Eh, I was pretty fine and/or happy with most of them, with the exception of Cream.

I guess it's just a matter of personal preference. I admit there's some discussions on here that I don't like to get involved with simply because my opinions on some things are almost completely subjective. 

43 minutes ago, DabigRG said:

There have been people who seem to not only disapprove of their work with Sonic on sight, but are also the types to hold odd priorities/grudges anyway.

I've been wondering what the hell is happening with SEGA on that lately.

Lost World was the only game they came up with the story for(with the Deadly Six and possibly the Lost Hex being SonicTeam's contribution), but afterwards Forces notably had them kicked down to just helping with the localization of what the 06 guy already had approved.

Colors, on the otherhand, is a middleground where they had input with the various jokes and banter, but everything thing else was what was carried over from many preexisting scripts, which is likely why it is the most complete of their stories.

Eh, I guess it just depends. I think for a lot, it's just based on their previous work. They didn't like what Pontac and Graff came up with before or their track record, so naturally they don't have much faith in their future material. I think that's fair. I think saying something like "Pontac and Graff are absolutely incapable of making anything even remotely good and they never will anything good" is probably prejudiced.

I'm personally not a big fan of the banter and jokes they tend to write. I find it a bit too over-the-top and too try-hard (if that's the right word I'm looking for).

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