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So.... Is Tails Suffering From Depression In Sonic Forces?

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So, I watched the video.

This changed my perspective on the entire game. It's an even bigger dumpster fire than I thought it was, but it hurts even more because there was something there.

Excellent analysis, man. 

37 minutes ago, DabigRG said:

Gonna go ahead a reply anyway despite skimming the first paragraph or so:

I wouldn't say depression so much as survivor's guilt.

Watch the video, or at least be courteous enough to not dismiss his argument without thinking about it.

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1 minute ago, Indigo Rush said:

 

Excellent analysis, man. 

Watch the video, or at least be courteous enough to not dismiss his argument without thinking about it.

I'm not. I just went ahead and gave my own read of it since I've thought about it myself and established it as a measurement for once I do finish the entire video.

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Man this game about a war is...about war? Man who woulda thunk it. I mean not to be too snarky but I feel like the first third or so of the video was just trying to hammer in points that I thought were pretty obvious. The game's not really that subtle about its war themes, it's just that none of it lands due to poor writing and being played out by silly cartoon forest creatures.

Also I don't think Tails was ever actually meant to be on par with Sonic in the classic games. Tails alone playthroughs aren't canon. I'd say what Tails is supposed to be in those games is closer to what you see from him in a Sonic & Tails playthrough (though probably not quite as incompetent as the simplistic AI); he follows behind Sonic, he sometimes bumbles into traps and enemies, he can help out occasionally, but ultimately it's Sonic doing the real work. I do agree that the games from SA on focusing on his unique strengths rather than him being another Sonic is the right move though.

As for the actual subject of the thread, I'm not sure if I'd call it capital-D Depression, I'm neither a doctor nor do I have depression myself so I'm not sure I'm comfortable reaching for specifics like that, but they were definitely starting to do a thing where Tails was seriously affected by all the shit that had gone down. It doesn't ultimately work because, as you said, they immediately drop it, but Tails cowering at Chaos is clearly not meant to be Sonic Team or Pontac and Graff or whoever declaring that Tails sucks now and is a dumb cowardly baby because they hate him. The kid watched his best friend get the shit kicked out of him to the point that he's presumed dead, and he's gone through six months of watching their worst enemy take over nearly the entire planet; it's only reasonable that that'd leave some marks. As much as there is to criticize about all this it's frustrating to see it get written off as just bad writing or some kind of anti-Tails bias, especially when so many people are also hoping for the series to take itself more seriously. Like, more than Infinite the edgelord, more than Sonic being serious and not telling jokes, this is the series trying to do something meaningful and significant with one of its characters, and yes, it failed, hard, we all agree on that point, but I still think it's worth recognizing what it's trying to do.

I mean if people are willing to give Infinite another chance for his supposed potential shouldn't this at least be acknowledged?

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As somebody else with unfortunate experience with depression, I'm a little baffled that I never came to the same conclusion. Though as it's clearly stated in the video, what made me think it wasn't depression was the initial cowering he does before the war started.

I also share the opinion that he did the wise thing in not trying to engage Infinite and the illusions in combat. His entire character is based around his intelligence, it would be an act of major foolishness to throw yourself into that situation, even more so when you just witnessed your best friend and idol fall victim to those same enemies. Considering Infinite's joy in emotional torture, it's very plausible that he let Tails escape just as he did with the Avatar. It would've been more poetic if the game went in that direction as Tails and the Avatar would then play an essential role in his defeat, making a major point that Infinite was set up to fail by his own arrogance.

One thing that I feel is overlooked by fans and was also missed in the video was about Sonic Adventure. When Tails fights Chaos 4, Sonic is there. When he faces the Egg Walker, Sonic wasn't presumed dead. While he does stand up to Eggman in Adventure 2 after witnessing Sonic's "death" you could consider the adrenaline of the situation and the need to protect Amy that pushed Tails to fight back. I have to wonder if Tails has the confidence to take up Sonic's position of saviour in future adventures if Sonic did indeed perish in that moment.

Though I should also point out that I didn't have any major problems with his reaction to Chaos. But I do feel like it could've been done in a less embarrassing way for the character. I do find it very easy to believe that he would lose the confidence he gained with Sonic if he witnessed the hedgehogs defeat and was unable to prevent it. The time skip also prevents the players from seeing the extent of how hard Tails was hit by the whole thing. All we really get is one line. Literally one word, "SONIC!?"

But yeah, I watched the whole video and it makes some interesting points. More examples of how Forces messed up.

On a side note, I wish the localisation didn't state that Sonic was "being tortured" while in captivity. It was such a throw away line, but has major implications on Eggman as a character. Though I suppose forcing Sonic to watch his victory could be considered a type of torture, but I'm going off topic.

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1 hour ago, -dan- said:

While he does stand up to Eggman in Adventure 2 after witnessing Sonic's "death" you could consider the adrenaline of the situation and the need to protect Amy that pushed Tails to fight back.

Seeing how Tails reacts, the idea of Sonic entrusting him to take his place probably did a lot for his own self-confidence.

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I don't think anyone expected Tails to just jump on in and declare he'd defeat all 4 of them like some Chad. But at least trying to get Sonic out of there I believe he would have done, even in his pathetic meek incarnation handicap, I still think he'd have tried to before being scared off. Instead, nothing. Not even an attempt. It's like he went SONIC....Welp fuck...better luck next time.

I also think people really underestimate how much he's been through in several games. I don't think this idea is even bad, and it really could have been good.....but it comes at literally the worst of times and is told so poorly. He's been portrayed as a meek pathetic loser for almost a decade and this was basically just beating that dead horse of a point. So instead of an arc, we're just reinforced the belief that he's a helpless child...while a younger child with less experience proves more competent.

Also while I still don't think he'd cower to Chaos 0 of all things, I'd like to mention he cowered to basic robots.....BASIC...MOOKS. And this was all before Sonic was beaten and then presumed dead. So there's not even a psychological excuse there. He was already portrayed as a coward even before that. Those robots that barely put up a fight, are too scary. It comes to a point this served NO ONE! Tails becomes both creepy and shown even more cowardly. He's immediately cheered up by just A Sonic...that's all that mattered, and Infinite having some lasting impact on him was nothing. So even the villain cred he coulda got was erased by the fan boner.

And lastly Donkey Kong can even fix Omega. I don't even think trauma can lower ya below someone of very low intelligence XP
kgqJJ1IE-dygJ50Aoo6MwI9dibLgy5ckuJ9lDN81

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23 minutes ago, dbzfan7 said:

I don't think anyone expected Tails to just jump on in and declare he'd defeat all 4 of them like some Chad. But at least trying to get Sonic out of there I believe he would have done, even in his pathetic meek incarnation handicap, I still think he'd have tried to before being scared off. Instead, nothing. Not even an attempt. It's like he went SONIC....Welp fuck...better luck next time.

I also think people really underestimate how much he's been through in several games. I don't think this idea is even bad, and it really could have been good.....but it comes at literally the worst of times and is told so poorly. He's been portrayed as a meek pathetic loser for almost a decade and this was basically just beating that dead horse of a point. So instead of an arc, we're just reinforced the belief that he's a helpless child...while a younger child with less experience proves more competence.

There’s a rather simple way him not saving Sonic could have worked out: Have Infinite cast an illusion on him while he attempts to save Sonic, where Sonic’s body seems to get up, only to pull some exorcist like shit and have the head twist around 360 degrees, and then the body begins decaying as Sonic wails “Tails...you failed me...help...” in a raspy croak. It’s said that Tails has a fear of ghosts in the past, so he might be afraid of what appears to be demonic possession/undead as well, and this would freak him out badly enough that he’d freeze up. By the time the illusion falls off him and he gets his senses back, INFINITE already took Sonic, and a Tails doesn’t know what to believe anymore on top of being hit with extreme guilt for his failure. And it sets up the reveal for Infinite’s power.

 

Edit: Okay maybe Exorcist might be a tad over the top, but you get the idea.

Edited by SenEDDtor Missile

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4 minutes ago, SenEDDtor Missile said:

There’s a rather simple way him not saving Sonic could have worked out: Have Infinite cast an illusion on him while he attempts to save Sonic, where Sonic’s body seems to get up, only to pull some exorcist like shit and have the head twist around 360 degrees, and then the body begins decaying as Sonic wails “Tails...you failed me...help...” in a raspy croak. It’s said that Tails has a fear of ghosts in the past, so he might be afraid of what appears to be demonic possession/undead as well, and this would freak him out badly enough that he’d freeze up. By the time the illusion falls off him and he gets his senses back, INFINITE already took Sonic, and a Tails doesn’t know what to believe anymore on top of being hit with extreme guilt for his failure. And it sets up the reveal for Infinite’s power.

I mean I think that'd be pretty creepy and awesome. But I don't think Sega would go that far or do that.

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4 minutes ago, dbzfan7 said:

I mean I think that'd be pretty creepy and awesome. But I don't think Sega would go that far or do that.

If they didn’t want that to be a possibility, they probably shouldn’t have gone for a powerset that enables such a possibility 😂.

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18 minutes ago, dbzfan7 said:

I mean I think that'd be pretty creepy and awesome. But I don't think Sega would go that far or do that.

Yeah, agreed-- I don't think that would be something SEGA would do.

My headcanon is that Tails tried to get Sonic, but Infinite held him off somehow-- maybe did that antigravity thing he used on Sonic when he encountered him for the second time-- or he was otherwise stopped.

But yeah, this is a pretty good analysis. Also, as I'm not shy of saying, I agree with the fact that Tails was well within his rights to be acting the way he did (except for cowering from Eggman's minions before the war even began). A young boy like Tails watching his best pal actually lose to a foe that not even someone of his intelligence could get a handle on and the thought of said pal potentially being gone forever because of it would definitely shatter his willpower over the course of a day, never mind six months.

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Great video.

I concede that it would appear I was emphasizing on a symptom rather than the bigger condition; I truly don't understand much about depression beyond the two big effects. I apologize.

Those were brilliant observations when it came to why Green Hill became a Desert specifically and the fact that Vector of all people was somewhat gloomy and doubtful throughout the game.

You also do a great job underlining the catch 22 of a series like this and pointing out how establishing a set scale of power to make writing stories without overly adjusting the stakes easier. The problems with recent games lies not in the fact that some of the other characters aren't super competent(though I won't say that can't be a factor at times), but in the fact that the stories aren't written well enough to allow and/or justify it adequately nor make compromises that keeps the other characters constantly nerfed.

With that said, it also goes to show how this game was just dark af and that the writers(and to an extent, the localizers) not only didn't know how to convey the narrative information, but likely weren't ready to tell such a story in the first place.

 

As for the issues with Tails' scenes:

  • Personally, I think a simple fix to the opening would've been having scattered robot parts and maybe signs of singing visible to indicate that there was an effort to fight back before everyone was cornered. Heck, you could maybe even throw in an early Wispon prototype that shorted out there as another hint of things to come. But your fix was the more reasonable one.
  • On the fight against the Eggy Six, I think that perhaps could've been solved by either simply having Tails more obviously distracted trying to figure out what Infinite is doing or even better, perhaps have him coming to intervene near the very end. The first is consistent with the character's habits, while the latter could add some miniscule weight to the fact that the Resistance didn't know where he was in the Japanese version. Though I suppose you raise a third point of having him hesitate before running ala Brawl.
  • Spot on with the Chaos thing.
  • Another great point you raise also vouches for the validity of having a Chaos bossfight: seeing Classic actually fight off the illusionary Chao could've acted as a proper burst of reasonable inspiration.
  • The reunion was super rushed, yes.
  • I don't think we necessarily needed to see Tails fixing Omega, but I do think that "subplot" could've been tuned as well.
    • Dope! Nevermind, you address another thing I had in mind--sorta.

 

 

13 hours ago, Diogenes said:

 

Also I don't think Tails was ever actually meant to be on par with Sonic in the classic games. Tails alone playthroughs aren't canon. I'd say what Tails is supposed to be in those games is closer to what you see from him in a Sonic & Tails playthrough (though probably not quite as incompetent as the simplistic AI); he follows behind Sonic, he sometimes bumbles into traps and enemies, he can help out occasionally, but ultimately it's Sonic doing the real work. I do agree that the games from SA on focusing on his unique strengths rather than him being another Sonic is the right move though.

 

Aw shit, Cream's handicap before Cream.

12 hours ago, -dan- said:

 

On a side note, I wish the localisation didn't state that Sonic was "being tortured" while in captivity. It was such a throw away line, but has major implications on Eggman as a character. Though I suppose forcing Sonic to watch his victory could be considered a type of torture, but I'm going off topic.

Or Zavok anyway.

But yes.

11 hours ago, dbzfan7 said:

 

And lastly Donkey Kong can even fix Omega. I don't even think trauma can lower ya below someone of very low intelligence XP
kgqJJ1IE-dygJ50Aoo6MwI9dibLgy5ckuJ9lDN81

What the heck was going through their heads when they came up with that, btw?

 

10 hours ago, SonicWind said:

 

My headcanon is that Tails tried to get Sonic, but Infinite held him off somehow-- maybe did that antigravity thing he used on Sonic when he encountered him for the second time-- or he was otherwise stopped.

 

I personally imagined the Eggy Six either scared him off or took him out with little issue.

Preferably the former, as the latter opens up the obvious can of worms.

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5 minutes ago, Kuzu the Boloedge said:

Just to poke a little fun, I suggest people to watch this with subtitles on because hog's accent makes for some amusing moments 

That and a combination of the fact I recorded the audio whilst I had really bad flu.

So it's basically someone with a Yorkshire accent and flu trying to speak English, and Google's Ai is trying to turn that into English...

 

Regarding Donkey Kong.

He probably just threw Omega at something or something at Omega, the shock of the impact shook something loose. Omega wakes up and is like "What happened?"

Kong be like: fixed ya mate.

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44 minutes ago, DabigRG said:

What the heck was going through their heads when they came up with that, btw?

I figure Donkey Kong fixing Omega is not meant to be taken seriously. It's a spinoff title and non-canon anyway and was meant as nothing more than a gag. Picking the least likely character in the present cast to fix such a mechanical problem.

Of he did what us old folk did when TVs and computers weren't working properly back in the day and simply whacked them. It was surprising how often that worked.

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Saw the whole video. Honestly I already thought Tails was suppose to be suffering from depression and that it was poorly presented before now... however It doesn't change the fact I hate how they handled it or how I dislike them making Tails looking lame in general. So even if that is all true it doesn't change my mind that Tails sucks in Sonic Forces... and in Lost World too.

And going off of the comment in the video where you said that Sonic-Team are making the side-cast characters weaker nowadays in order to make Sonic seem more special... and if I understood you right, that you think it is ok of them to so... Then I don't agree that is a good choice for them to do at all. Outside of being the series main character there is no good reason to treat Sonic as if he is the only one who can get anything done... I find that is a cheap pandering story writing tactic for most stories which decide to do it in general. For example I feel Dragonball suffers greatly from it where Goku often is the only one allowed to finish the main problems in the story... it comes across as lame and obvious main character pandering. I think better stories normally are ones where even if the main character is special... that regardless the whole cast still are balanced and are not 100% dependent on the main character in order to get crud done... there is exceptions to this... I do love One Punch Man despite the MC being crazy OP... but especially if one has read the manga they'll realize quickly it is far better balanced then something such as Dragonball... as a example One Punch Man doesn't always have the MC solve all the main story problems themselves... other characters still fight and win on their own often, and the MC is nowhere to be seen sometimes for whole short story arcs too when that happens... so even if in the end the MC is the one who beats the final main villains... at least the writer didn't make the side-cast near useless while doing it. I think Sonic-Team needs to stop making Sonic out to be a deity like figure among the cast and go ahead and allow other characters to be just as good as him in their own ways. And no I don't think the stories need higher stakes as a result... they just need better writing in general instead of relying on cheap lazy methods such as only one hero who can get anything done, regardless if said hero sometimes get help from friends or not doesn't change that.

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27 minutes ago, Lord-Dreamerz said:

...I feel Dragonball suffers greatly from it where Goku often is the only one allowed to finish the main problems in the story...

In the movies...this is accurate.

When "Z" started, this is inaccurate.

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34 minutes ago, -dan- said:

I figure Donkey Kong fixing Omega is not meant to be taken seriously. It's a spinoff title and non-canon anyway and was meant as nothing more than a gag. Picking the least likely character in the present cast to fix such a mechanical problem.

Of he did what us old folk did when TVs and computers weren't working properly back in the day and simply whacked them. It was surprising how often that worked.

 

53 minutes ago, Mayor D said:

 

Regarding Donkey Kong.

He probably just threw Omega at something or something at Omega, the shock of the impact shook something loose. Omega wakes up and is like "What happened?"

Kong be like: fixed ya mate.

I would hope so. 

Cause at face value, you got a non-speaking gorilla with it's giant hands fixing a walking arsenal of a robot built by the hands of a man with an IQ of 300.

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22 minutes ago, StaticMania said:

In the movies...this is accurate.

When "Z" started, this is inaccurate.

I watched the entire main 3 series, Dragonball, DBZ and DB-Super. My opinion Goku is more or less the one who finishes the final opponents the majority of the time, even if not every single time. And the show still makes him the most OP character in the end no matter what... with many past side characters getting seriously power creeped and left behind as almost useless only with some exceptions.

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10 minutes ago, StaticMania said:

Finishes...? He often is the last one to fight the "boss"...whether or not he is the one who actually finishes them is 50/50.

I can't even think of to many main enemies he didn't defeat in DBZ... Frieza, Cell and Boo... Anyways point is DBZ & Super doesn't really balance their cast... However I hate to say it but even DBZ to a degree treats it's character cast balance better then Sonic games do lately.

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1 hour ago, Lord-Dreamerz said:

Saw the whole video. Honestly I already thought Tails was suppose to be suffering from depression and that it was poorly presented before now... however It doesn't change the fact I hate how they handled it or how I dislike them making Tails looking lame in general. So even if that is all true it doesn't change my mind that Tails sucks in Sonic Forces... and in Lost World too.

And going off of the comment in the video where you said that Sonic-Team are making the side-cast characters weaker nowadays in order to make Sonic seem more special... and if I understood you right, that you think it is ok of them to so... Then I don't agree that is a good choice for them to do at all. Outside of being the series main character there is no good reason to treat Sonic as if he is the only one who can get anything done... I find that is a cheap pandering story writing tactic for most stories which decide to do it in general. For example I feel Dragonball suffers greatly from it where Goku often is the only one allowed to finish the main problems in the story... it comes across as lame and obvious main character pandering. I think better stories normally are ones where even if the main character is special... that regardless the whole cast still are balanced and are not 100% dependent on the main character in order to get crud done... there is exceptions to this... I do love One Punch Man despite the MC being crazy OP... but especially if one has read the manga they'll realize quickly it is far better balanced then something such as Dragonball... as a example One Punch Man doesn't always have the MC solve all the main story problems themselves... other characters still fight and win on their own often, and the MC is nowhere to be seen sometimes for whole short story arcs too when that happens... so even if in the end the MC is the one who beats the final main villains... at least the writer didn't make the side-cast near useless while doing it. I think Sonic-Team needs to stop making Sonic out to be a deity like figure among the cast and go ahead and allow other characters to be just as good as him in their own ways. And no I don't think the stories need higher stakes as a result... they just need better writing in general instead of relying on cheap lazy methods such as only one hero who can get anything done, regardless if said hero sometimes get help from friends or not doesn't change that.

Did you miss the part when he pointed out that Tails couldn't help even if he jumped in? 

In a narrative, all characters are not created equally. There needs to be some type of hierarchy to establish more focus.

If everyone was as capable as Sonic, then it kind of undermines the fact that Sonic is the hero doesn't it.

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2 hours ago, Lord-Dreamerz said:

Outside of being the series main character there is no good reason to treat Sonic as if he is the only one who can get anything done...

This much is true, but it doesn't mean that every character has to be equally strong/good at fighting. Even if Tails isn't out there busting up robots he's still helping Sonic with his inventions, piloting skills, and general knowledge/intelligence, and that can be just as important.

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