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Mountaindewandsprite

Has "Solo Sonic" been detrimental to the series?

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Given the hate for Sonic's "shitty friends", it's no wonder why the series would listen to the fans and try to go back to their classic roots. Problem is, even in the classic era, new characters were added with each game. Hell, the whole point of Sonic as a game and as a character is that he is a nomad. He goes where ever life takes him. He is eventually going to meet someone new, get into trouble, and work together with said new ally. So I really saw no problem with the cast. The problem wasn't really the number of characters but the characterization. Some of the characters are easily forgettable. That being said, I feel that solo Sonic has been a disaster and defeats the whole purpose of Sonic.

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It's definitely gotten bland over the last several games they've enforced it and growing even more stale as we speak, although props for trying ro spice things up with the Avatar, albeit basically being an overpowered ranged Sonic in terms of functionality.

The problem wasn't a forgettable cast. I know most of the Teams and a few side characters by heart like Mario, Marine, and Vanilla; it's just the fact that these characters require a huge amount of creativity in terms of level design if they want them to share an environment together, as well as the fact that you need to come up with explanations as to why certain characters can't just abuse their powers like flight, climbing, chaos powers, and psychokinesis.

Another part of it is how the fans outcried about Silver, and Big, and Amy, and Rouge, and Eggman in a mech and Sonic Team took that as people not liking the characters ans directions they took since most people ALWAYS praised the Sonic gameplay. So in a way, the fans kinda got this "Sonic Only" mentality going and did this to themselves. Though, Sonic Team should also have listened to the criticisms from the people who've explained how to make the gameplay better for those characters and more, but eh. Maybe in the future.

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Not at first.

Part of Sonic's problem is a total lack of any sort of consistency. Even in the Adventure titles, even as much as I love them, it's like playing several different games in one package. There's no one, singular core style that everyone follows like in say, Sonic 3 & Knuckles. This is a problem because that means they have to allocate resources to make sure every style works. Game development doesn't happen in a vacuum, they have a deadline and several different people including executives and investors to answer to. That means less time to the other styles. That means less polish. That means a game that's worse for wear.

As crummy as Forces was, if Shadow's gameplay was them starting to ease back into having multiple characters, then that's how I want to do it. Build off of Sonic but give them something, anything to make them unique.

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The overuse of anything eventually becomes a detriment to a series.

6 minutes ago, DreamSaturn said:

Even in the Adventure titles, even as much as I love them, it's like playing several different games in one package. There's no one, singular core style that everyone follows like in say, Sonic 3 & Knuckles.

The 'different playstyles' is an interesting problem to tackle. Because it's not like Sonic is the only game that ever did that, yet it seems to be the one to get the most flack for it. People often complain the Adventure games shove different playstyles down their throat when they only want to play as Sonic. But how is it never a problem when other games does the same thing?

For example GTA: it has the on-foot playstyle, the driving playstyle, the flying playstyle, motorboat playstyle..what if someone only enjoys the on-foot playstyle but certain missions requires the other playstyles? I never really seen people complain about that.

Or Half-Life: in the first game, it was (from memory) a strictly FPS game. With Half-Life 2, they added the MANDATORY driving and the airboat playstyles that you must go through.

Yes, the different characters in Sonic should bear some resemblence to Sonic's playstyle, but a carbon copy of Sonic just defeats the purpose of having other characters.

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14 minutes ago, Tarnish said:

The overuse of anything eventually becomes a detriment to a series.

The 'different playstyles' is an interesting problem to tackle. Because it's not like Sonic is the only game that ever did that, yet it seems to be the one to get the most flack for it. People often complain the Adventure games shove different playstyles down their throat when they only want to play as Sonic. But how is it never a problem when other games does the same thing?

For example GTA: it has the on-foot playstyle, the driving playstyle, the flying playstyle, motorboat playstyle..what if someone only enjoys the on-foot playstyle but certain missions requires the other playstyles? I never really seen people complain about that.

Or Half-Life: in the first game, it was (from memory) a strictly FPS game. With Half-Life 2, they added the MANDATORY driving and the airboat playstyles that you must go through.

Yes, the different characters in Sonic should bear some resemblence to Sonic's playstyle, but a carbon copy of Sonic just defeats the purpose of having other characters.

The thing with those playstyles is, as someone who completed San Andreas and Half-Life 2 fairly recently, those games don't take up nearly as much time as say, Eggman did in Sonic Adventure 2. Sure, they're prominent, but a literal third of the game? Not even close. Things got worse until the problem climaxed in 2006 and I don't think I need to explain how having to work on like, 12 different playstyles hurt that.

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9 minutes ago, DreamSaturn said:

Not at first.

Part of Sonic's problem is a total lack of any sort of consistency. Even in the Adventure titles, even as much as I love them, it's like playing several different games in one package. There's no one, singular core style that everyone follows like in say, Sonic 3 & Knuckles. This is a problem because that means they have to allocate resources to make sure every style works. Game development doesn't happen in a vacuum, they have a deadline and several different people including executives and investors to answer to. That means less time to the other styles. That means less polish. That means a game that's worse for wear.

As crummy as Forces was, if Shadow's gameplay was them starting to ease back into having multiple characters, then that's how I want to do it. Build off of Sonic but give them something, anything to make them unique.

I dunno. A character shouldn't just be a carbon copy of Sonic for mostly everything.

I think that Sonic Team should treat the characters as they are: within their own stories. Treat those other characters as if they were the stars of a game and focus on those characters and what they can do. Make them reasonably fast, yeah, but they don't need to be speeding bullets with loop-de-loops and having races constantly. The examples I have of like having Rouge in a Sly Cooper-esque thing or even Shadow since he has a time manipulation ability could be fun, imo. Just be aware of your characters and their abilities, and design a few levels around their core mechanics with a but of a unique factor like secret path or diverging paths for characters capable of flight, plowing through a thicm metal wall, or having the speed to cross a gap or something like that. Pitfalls are a thing in this world so it's not like these are unbelievable.

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1 minute ago, Foxthefox1000 said:

I dunno. A character shouldn't just be a carbon copy of Sonic for mostly everything.

I think that Sonic Team should treat the characters as they are: within their own stories. Treat those other characters as if they were the stars of a game and focus on those characters and what they can do. Make them reasonably fast, yeah, but they don't need to be speeding bullets with loop-de-loops and having races constantly. The examples I have of like having Rouge in a Sly Cooper-esque thing or even Shadow since he has a time manipulation ability could be fun, imo. Just be aware of your characters and their abilities, and design a few levels around their core mechanics with a but of a unique factor like secret path or diverging paths for characters capable of flight, plowing through a thicm metal wall, or having the speed to cross a gap or something like that. Pitfalls are a thing in this world so it's not like these are unbelievable.

The problem with that is exactly what I outlined. Game development often runs on a very strict budget, and making every character a drastically different game like that is a recipe for disaster.

My point wasn't "make them a carbon copy of Sonic", I'm not sure where that came from. My point, as I said, was to look at Sonic 3 and Knuckles as an example. Use Sonic as a base and build on them from there. Everyone can still Spindash and do all the standard shit in S3K. But they have their own subtle differences that make them unique. Knuckles can glide and climb walls and break through walls, Tails can fly, Sonic can use the Elemental Shields in unique ways. But the core is still the same.

But making them all drastically, completely different to the point where it's like playing a drastically different game? Double, hard no.

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41 minutes ago, DreamSaturn said:

My point, as I said, was to look at Sonic 3 and Knuckles as an example. Use Sonic as a base and build on them from there. Everyone can still Spindash and do all the standard shit in S3K. But they have their own subtle differences that make them unique.

There's definitely a lot that could be done with that approach. (I personally have been writing down my ideas how to build on the Sonic 3 & Knuckles formula for like a decade now, might share those one day). Of course one would need a competent and creative team to do that. In 2D, as neat as Mania was, they did very few new things and repeated some of the same flaws of the original games as well. And as flawed as the adventure games were, we haven't seen a better attempt in 3D for the other characters since then.

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To fix the development issue... Simply don't rush the game, then? 

This series is 3D now and not Classic anymore. If you want a mainline rivals game on a console, then you do you, but as far as I recall, that also was mixed to decent at best in its critical reception even though they did exactly what you said, for the most part. The only thing missing is the flying and breaking walls or whatever, but there's so many characters who are all capable of the same feats that it might make two playstyles a bit redundant or feel generally the same, which is another fatal flaw in that. Sonic Mania has Mighty and Ray, for example, but what do they have that Tails or Knuckles don't have, or for another question, what DO they have that doesn't make them seem overpowered in a sense? It becomes harder to balance a 2D game when your characters are all designed around one character's abilities, yet continually add onto that. For example, if you were to take into account the Original Sonic Trilogy and compare Sonic, Tails, and Knuckles, you'd be extremely lucky to find those that think Sonic's gameplay makes the game easier. That's another issue in balancing that kind of game: Some characters trivializing things or making the game feel easy due to building on what the original character can do.

You're asking for the claims of Shadow being "Overpowered" again when he'll be Sonic but with Chaos Powers in gameplay if they actually want to serve the character right. You can make the levels differ a little bit to accommodate for his powers, but simply differing a level a bit seems like the lazy way of doing things, and each character would still feel redundant since they're still Sonic 2.0.

I'm not asking for Big and treasure hunting, just don't make it feel like we're just playing Sonic 2.0. They can be speedy to accommodate for all the people who seem to think anything below screen blurs is "slow", but they don't have to have Sonic's exact stats either. Tails shouldn't be just racing with other characters, especially on enemy grounds. Refine 06's Tails a bit, and I think he'd be cool. The thing with Tails that the Adventure series has already shown is that he's capable, so don't make him a glorified Sonic or beta for SA2's multiplayer. Give him an actual purpose and calling that requires HIS skills. Tails' Adventure had a cool idea with his little bot friend as well as Sonic Chronicles and Battle have bots and gear help him. Maybe have a little hovering bot function like a Cheese to his Cream and assist him in attacks? Cream's likely not going to be playable anytime soon so why not give someone her assets? 

But I digress.

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3 hours ago, Mountaindewandsprite said:

The problem wasn't really the number of characters but the characterization. Some of the characters are easily forgettable.

This is exactly the issue. If you look at other series like Super Mario and Crash Bandicoot those series also have a huge cast of characters, but the big difference between them and Sonic is, that a lot of them fill in the roles of side characters. Most of Sonic's shitty friends are written just like Sonic. Been a superhero with a special power that fights the big bad guy. Shadow, Knuckles, Blaze, Silver, Team Chaotix and even Sticks feel more like co-stars than side characters.

And you can not fill your whole story with dozen of hero characters. There needs to be one central character. And for this series, it needs to be Sonic.  

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1 hour ago, Foxthefox1000 said:

To fix the development issue... Simply don't rush the game, then?

That's not as simple as you might think. Again, they have people like investors they have to answer to. Even if you, in theory, get more time, you still have a limited budget to work with and that runs out faster than you might think.

1 hour ago, Foxthefox1000 said:

 

This series is 3D now and not Classic anymore. If you want a mainline rivals game on a console, then you do you, but as far as I recall, that also was mixed to decent at best in its critical reception even though they did exactly what you said, for the most part. The only thing missing is the flying and breaking walls or whatever, but there's so many characters who are all capable of the same feats that it might make two playstyles a bit redundant or feel generally the same, which is another fatal flaw in that. Sonic Mania has Mighty and Ray, for example, but what do they have that Tails or Knuckles don't have, or for another question, what DO they have that doesn't make them seem overpowered in a sense? It becomes harder to balance a 2D game when your characters are all designed around one character's abilities, yet continually add onto that. For example, if you were to take into account the Original Sonic Trilogy and compare Sonic, Tails, and Knuckles, you'd be extremely lucky to find those that think Sonic's gameplay makes the game easier. That's another issue in balancing that kind of game: Some characters trivializing things or making the game feel easy due to building on what the original character can do.

Mighty has his groundpound that can send him down quicker, can take an extra hit from spikes, and when rolling is invulnerable to projectiles. Knuckles can't do that. Ray's glide can, in the hands of an experienced player, cover almost the entire stage. He doesn't get tired like Tails does with his flying.

I'm not sure what your point is in "The series is 3D now and not Classic anymore", as if that some how trivializes my point in Sonic 2 and Sonic 3, and if you want to count Mania and the remade Sonic CD, does exactly what I'm saying, and they're huge financial successes, and receive fan and critical acclaim.

1 hour ago, Foxthefox1000 said:

You're asking for the claims of Shadow being "Overpowered" again when he'll be Sonic but with Chaos Powers in gameplay if they actually want to serve the character right. You can make the levels differ a little bit to accommodate for his powers, but simply differing a level a bit seems like the lazy way of doing things, and each character would still feel redundant since they're still Sonic 2.0.

What? No I'm not. All this tells me is that you aren't understanding what I'm saying at all. Again, look at the Genesis trilogy. Everyone has a core style, they have their own unique abilities that make them standout. Again, refer to Knuckles' gliding and climbing, Tails' flying, Sonic's use of the Elemental Shields, etc. They're different, but they don't drastically change the way the game is played. And the fact that they don't is a good thing!

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I'd say it's detrimental. I don't care if Sonic's the title character, I'm tired of being forced to play as him and nobody else! One of the main reasons I was excited for Forces is because it gave us someone else to play as.

4 minutes ago, DreamSaturn said:

My point wasn't "make them a carbon copy of Sonic", I'm not sure where that came from. My point, as I said, was to look at Sonic 3 and Knuckles as an example. Use Sonic as a base and build on them from there. Everyone can still Spindash and do all the standard shit in S3K. But they have their own subtle differences that make them unique. Knuckles can glide and climb walls and break through walls, Tails can fly, Sonic can use the Elemental Shields in unique ways. But the core is still the same.

I don't know,  one problem I have with games like Sonic 3 or Mania is that the characters aren't different enough. I think there should be more differences than just how they double jump.

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2 hours ago, Foxthefox1000 said:

Sonic Mania has Mighty and Ray, for example, but what do they have that Tails or Knuckles don't have, or for another question, what DO they have that doesn't make them seem overpowered in a sense? It becomes harder to balance a 2D game when your characters are all designed around one character's abilities, yet continually add onto that. For example, if you were to take into account the Original Sonic Trilogy and compare Sonic, Tails, and Knuckles, you'd be extremely lucky to find those that think Sonic's gameplay makes the game easier. That's another issue in balancing that kind of game: Some characters trivializing things or making the game feel easy due to building on what the original character can do.

Unless you're making a game that leans heavily on the competitive side (and let's be totally honest - even Sonic games with actual competitive racing have never been particularly serious affairs, occasional spinoff-y exceptions notwithstanding), it doesn't really make a whole lot of sense to give other characters shit for not being perfectly balanced with one another. As long as Sonic is a singleplayer game first and foremost, whether or not the player wants a smoother experience or a self-imposed challenge should be on the player, as an individual, to decide for themselves. Even speedrunners categorize their character-based runs separately because they know there's really no sense in comparing them directly like that.

2 hours ago, Foxthefox1000 said:

I'm not asking for Big and treasure hunting, just don't make it feel like we're just playing Sonic 2.0. They can be speedy to accommodate for all the people who seem to think anything below screen blurs is "slow", but they don't have to have Sonic's exact stats either. Tails shouldn't be just racing with other characters, especially on enemy grounds. Refine 06's Tails a bit, and I think he'd be cool.

Now see this is the part where you start to lose me completely. It's one thing to suggest all characters maintain a respectable amount of speed - it's quite another to use 06 Tails or Tails Adventure, both of whom revolve around attacking from a complete standstill, as a basis for that.

I really can't repeat this enough - Sonic as a franchise is built around consistent flow above all else, and by consequence, a good Sonic moveset is about mobility first and attacking second. Most attempts to overhaul gameplay per-character have been largely hated not just because of the lack of familiarity, but also because the overwhelming majority of them throw this focus on mobility on the wayside in the process of making basically a completely different game within the game. Genesis style Sonic is held to a higher standard than most because it did this incredibly well, even though they only changed a single move between characters - and while it's true that Sonic was for the most part given the short end of the stick in S3&K save for exclusive access to incredibly situational powerups, Mania solved that by giving him the dropdash, not only giving him some much deserved mechanical space between characters but arguably making him the best character in the game until Ray showed up.

 

 

 

As for the topic itself? Much as I wish Sega would stop being a coward and enabling the same level of diversity we had over two decades ago, they're at worst only a convenient scapegoat whenever things go bad or good. The core issue behind their original disdain was that they employed gameplay overhauls that really had nothing to do with a Sonic game, and even based on their own merits were rarely internally consistent - and that never ceased to be true once they took the rest of the roster out of the equation completely because you had werehogs and lightgun shooters and multiple Sonics and shit like that instead. So no, they're not an innate burden. They're not even an innate benefit. Like many other things they're just tools, and tools can be used and misused on a by-game basis.

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36 minutes ago, Splash the Otter said:

I don't know,  one problem I have with games like Sonic 3 or Mania is that the characters aren't different enough. I think there should be more differences than just how they double jump.

Well, one of the major problems a lot of people have with things like Fishing/Treasure Hunting/Mech Shooting/the Werehog is that it's so far removed from what anyone expects or wants from a Sonic game. Variety is nice, but making it so drastically different that it's barely recognizable as a Sonic game? That's not exactly a great way to get a solid formula.

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2 minutes ago, DreamSaturn said:

Well, one of the major problems a lot of people have with things like Fishing/Treasure Hunting/Mech Shooting/the Werehog is that it's so far removed from what anyone expects or wants from a Sonic game. Variety is nice, but making it so drastically different that it's barely recognizable as a Sonic game? That's not exactly a great way to get a solid formula.

I didn't say I wanted fishing/treasure hunting/etc, just that I don't like when everyone is near identical to Sonic.

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2 minutes ago, Splash the Otter said:

I didn't say I wanted fishing/treasure hunting/etc, just that I don't like when everyone is near identical to Sonic.

But isn't that how it should be, ideally? That everyone just builds off a core style? That's how games like MegaMan, Mario, etc. have handled themselves for years.

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9 minutes ago, Splash the Otter said:

I didn't say I wanted fishing/treasure hunting/etc, just that I don't like when everyone is near identical to Sonic.

They are not identical to Sonic, they have their own skills in S3&K and Mania Plus, they just have the same routes, sans Knuckles. Which is why I think the next game (classic) should expand that and give different stages or campaigns to different characters, in sets like Sonic/Tails, Knuckles, Mighty/Ray and possible newcomers Amy/Honey. With brand new stages, that would be my ideal next game.

Thing is, the alternate playstiles from Adventure series, Shadow and Sonic '06 and even the Werehog (although it's still Sonic) ARE the reason critics shit on Sonic's friends! This is why they mostly should not come back, they give the series bad reputation, and add something that has hardly a place in a Sonic game and gameplay. I didn't like them, in SA1 it's worse because you have literally 6 gameplay styles and 3 of them are filler, although SA2 had 3 clones but still, only 3 gameplays, which was an improvement, if I made the game I would have only had Sonic, Knuckles and Eggman playable like in the original plans.

Just my thoughts. Having 1 gameplay with various skills that open different paths is the ideal route for a Sonic game. The next classic should follow up on that...

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2 minutes ago, DreamSaturn said:

But isn't that how it should be, ideally? That everyone just builds off a core style? That's how games like MegaMan, Mario, etc. have handled themselves for years.

No, that isn't how it should be. I want Tails to be Tails, not a flying version of Sonic!

2 minutes ago, Jack the Shadow said:

Thing is, the alternate playstiles from Adventure series, Shadow and Sonic '06 and even the Werehog (although it's still Sonic) ARE the reason critics shit on Sonic's friends! This is why they mostly should not come back, they give the series bad reputation, and add something that has hardly a place in a Sonic game and gameplay. I didn't like them, in SA1 it's worse because you have literally 6 gameplay styles and 3 of them are filler, although SA2 had 3 clones but still, only 3 gameplays, which was an improvement, if I made the game I would have only had Sonic, Knuckles and Eggman playable like in the original plans.

I already said I don't want alternate playstyles, just different movesets. Do you remember how in Sonic Advance, Amy had the same playstyle as everyone else but a unique moveset? I want something like that, but for every character.

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*sigh* I used them as examples purely for a cool feature they integrated or a certain playstyle that I emphasised NEEDED more tuning. I never said I want him to play EXACTLY like in those games, so don't feed words into mouth because I'm not gonna chew on that.

I'm aware that momentum is the tried-and-true aspect most people praise, so add that to the things I've mentioned. But again, they don't need to be Sonic 2.0, and if they are, at least give them a seperate story beyond being a replacement for Sonic like in the OG cutscenes. I want a reason to be playing a more mobile or more powerful Sonic beyond "I can beat the same game, but faster". Also, speedrunning isn't a natural thing a casual gamer does, I was just making the case that, for all intents and purposes, the main character can get upstaged if there's simply a better character to be played. Why play Sonic if Sonic isn't even special and not even that good? There's a thing called incentives. There's absolutely nothing rewarding you by playing Sonic, and relying too much on speed can have you blindly crashing into enemies or spikes. The momentum and core mechanics exist because that's the fun, and I applaud Mania for giving Sonic something extra to make his playstyle more unique, but we're not just talking three characters, as Sonic Team has been able to push 8 characters into one game that all shared the same mechanics, and the Adventure series are known for their inclusions of multiple playable characters beyond Team Sonic.

But these games are seperated into three eras for a reason. Momentum lovers go with the classics, those who argue Sonic is about speed will praise the Boosts, and the Adventure style is beloved to lots of people, but I've never seen anyone claim "They should all play exactly like Sonic" aside from maybe people who believe Shadow doesn't have anything more to him than being a clone. They can share some moves and can have speed, but there's also the fact that the Adventure series added upgrades specifically to help those issues. Silver, initially, was going to get a speed ehancer from the item shop, but it unfortunately didn't make the cut. So a character like Knuckles or Rouge could possibly get things to increase their other capabilities to have them maybe gain more momentum or accelerate quicker?

I dunno how different playstyles are exactly going to work in 3D with multiple characters. Maybe the slower characters can have the Unleashed drifting if there happen to be races for fairness? Or just include it for only the characters who can Boost. The Homing attack and spin dash don't need to be given to every character, so why not think of other ways they can quickly burst forward? Like, Rouge can actually flap her wings and create a huge gust of wind that propels her forward kinda like how Battle has characters Dash. They don't all need to be like Sonic in order to play well.

And another thing is just the established canon and capabilities of these characters. Yes, they all have super speed to some degree, but some have more than others, and fans will have to accept that unless we just want every character to suddenly be on par with a boosting Sonic, and the Speed-Types and the other typings for classifying these characters will continuously and gradually keep making less and less sense as times goes on. There's a lot on the plate, and it's exactly why I spoke of "fairness" too, because what if they decide to go the Rivals route and have a game where you pretty much race to the finish for all characters? How exactly do you balance that without making some trivial power-ups litter the field to have some characters stand a chance? It's a hard thing to do without making some sacrifices or making up new abilities for these characters to pull off. If Sonic is speed, then the non-speedsters need ways of being able to combat him, at least, and if other characters aren't the embodiments of speed within the universe, why should their gameplay be like Sonic's, at least in terms of racing? Again, not saying they all have to be sloths, just reasonable and still packing fun. No gimmicks like treasure hunting with a faulty radar and huge levels, mechs, fishing, or running away from an invulnerable robot for three whole stages whilst having a top speed even lower than Knuckles.

The random character conflicts and Rival aspects? Solid. Been there from the very beginning and have almost always been done pretty well, so why not introduce the gameplay in a different environment? The ME is basically a non-factor at this point, but Rouge infiltrating a highly secured facility is in-character and totally something that, if done right, could be awesome. Take that kind of aspect but let us actually do it in a manner that isn't as BS as emerald hunts. Maybe she snags a priceless artifact or treasure that Espio had his eyes on for Vector and the agency, and then Espio's side of the story is a chase sequence while Rouge's involves the getaway? That kind stuff is the simple story segregation and interconnection I'd like.

But I digress. Not everyone is going to agree with what's best for 3D Sonic and it's characters, so I'll just leave this here and be done with it.

 

 

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3 minutes ago, Splash the Otter said:

No, that isn't how it should be. I want Tails to be Tails, not a flying version of Sonic!

I already said I don't want alternate playstyles, just different movesets. Do you remember how in Sonic Advance, Amy had the same playstyle as everyone else but a unique moveset? I want something like that, but for every character.

Well, Mania also did the same to be fair. By the way, I want playable Amy in the next classic game with something similar to that Advance moveset.

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1 minute ago, Jack the Shadow said:

Well, Mania also did the same to be fair. By the way, I want playable Amy in the next classic game with something similar to that Advance moveset.

How did Mania do the same? The only thing that makes the characters different is their double jump!

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5 minutes ago, Splash the Otter said:

How did Mania do the same? The only thing that makes the characters different is their double jump!

It's their air action, their unique ability:

Sonic: Drop Dash

Tails: Flight

Knuckles: Glide/climb

Mighty: Hammer Drop

Ray: Air Glide

Obviously Mania has the classic styled simple moveset, with just 1 skill, but it's not bad. In fact I quite like it, I don't know if they should add more moves, depends if they actually had stuff. For example here Knuckles can break walls and Mighty can break certain floor with his skill. But yeah there aren't that many paths, there should be more. Plus Sonic can use the elemental shields skills.

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Just now, Splash the Otter said:

No, that isn't how it should be. I want Tails to be Tails, not a flying version of Sonic!

Normally "how it should be" is entirely subjective, and in many ways it still is - but I still think it bears pointing out that the actual backstory of Tails is basically "he was so mesmerized by the shit Sonic was able to pull that he learnt to spindash just to keep up with him". So "flying Sonic" isn't actually all that far off all things considered - the mechanical brilliance most people know him for today is kind of an obnoxious flanderization we got from the fact that he fixed Sonic's plane once, and I don't think it's unfair either to suggest he's overrelied on it since.

2 minutes ago, Splash the Otter said:

How did Mania do the same? The only thing that makes the characters different is their double jump!

Said double jump happens to make such a huge difference to the way characters work that it often defines their routing singlehandedly. I think you're really underselling just how much of an impact it has on their gameplay, as much as you're missing the point of characters having mechanics in common - mechanics, not moves, as rolling is the foundation apon which pretty much all Sonic gameplay is based on.

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Also, last thing, while yes, Mario has had a similar thing going on, those are also for multiplayer functionality and to make things more balanced between the casts. 

They are also autoscrolling 2D platformers or even a 3D environment where their STATS are also taken into account, so certain characters are slower, but have better recoveries and the ability to hover over gaps, while the fast one alsk can't jump the highest, and the one that can jump the highest and has a bit more speed has more traction to boot, making his footing less reliable.

In Mario's case, characters are often balanced around him to make him seem like the safest choice, being an all-rounder. Not sure if the New! series has Toads retain the best speed with less jump height or the whole traction and higher jumps with Luigi, but it's worth noting the unbalanced characters added in Deluxe are given special treatment and literally state "Easy" or "Easiest" in reference to how they can kind of trivialze the mechanics of the game and sort of cheat the system. And the fact I can't recall the differences in the New! series goes to show you that they, if they existed, were minimal at most so as to not make one character seem better and all literally have the same abilties and feel with no massive changes to the gameplay like flight, gliding, or invincibility 

So no, I don't think Mario is typically a good example. It should be also be noted that "Momentum" and the faster accelerations of some characters are small details that aren't exactly for balance, but just that they make sense, even if barely noticeable to me. Maybe like, do more with their stats like Mario? Maybe Tails does a little less damage to bosses and enemies to give him some kinda drawback besides "I fall the exact way I came up and virtually have little instances of this actually harming me"? I dunno. Just a thought. Maybe give Tails and Knux less traction than Sonic? Like, that kind of stuff. Or is that already in the game and it's really just not noticeable? I think I heard Knuckles has less of a jump, but that could just be a myth. Do they have a weight and certain characters fall down faster? These could essentially make them all feel different enough even in the core mechanics. The level design needs to be adjusted a bit too, and then bam! 

The thing with Sonic is it doesn't even try to limit the other characters because those other characters apparently needed such different abilities to add onto the core mechanics, which are Sonic's basic set, and the fact it ain't multiplayer. I mean, it is, but Sonic hogs the camera and this means that the 2P tends to get stuck behind the camera. So argue over balancing that if ya want. 

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Just now, Jack the Shadow said:

It's their air action, their unique ability:

Sonic: Drop Dash

Tails: Flight

Knuckles: Glide/climb

Mighty: Hammer Drop

Ray: Air Glide

Obviously Mania has the classic styled simple moveset, with just 1 skill, but it's not bad. In fact I quite like it, I don't know if they should add more moves, depends if they actually had stuff. For example here Knuckles can break walls and Mighty can break certain floor with his skill. But yeah there aren't that many paths, there should be more.

My point is that I want them to have more differences than just their air action.

5 minutes ago, Blacklightning said:

Normally "how it should be" is entirely subjective, and in many ways it still is - but I still think it bears pointing out that the actual backstory of Tails is basically "he was so mesmerized by the shit Sonic was able to pull that he learnt to spindash just to keep up with him". So "flying Sonic" isn't actually all that far off all things considered - the mechanical brilliance most people know him for today is kind of an obnoxious flanderization we got from the fact that he fixed Sonic's plane once, and I don't think it's unfair either to suggest he's overrelied on it since.

In SA1 he had a tail slash attack instead of a spin dash. I'd like to see that in more games.

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