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A 2.5D Only Sonic Game: Would You Buy It?

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Sonic Generations for 3DS (2011)

Recently I finally decided to spend some money at Steam and buy some long awaited games plus with the release of Mario Maker 2 this topic also came into my mind.

Mario and Sonic are 2 long time running video game franchises which consequently have passed through lots of changes during the years, the main of them I would say the 2D/3D transition. Roughly saying both had a nice transition, Mario with Super Mario 64 and Sonic with Sonic Adventure, without mentioning here Sonic Xtreme. However, not so long time after, it was noticeable that a partition of players still enjoyed and were missing the good old 2D platform games. By attempts and low console specs, both SEGA and Nintendo tried something. Nintendo did the New Super Mario Bros. series which enjoyed the best system specs but still made the good old Super Mario Bros. For Sonic it wasn't much different, but here trying to bring something to the portables, SEGA tried Sonic Rush, which also is considered by some the cradle of the boost gameplay.

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New Super Mario Bros. Wii (2009)

Still specifically to Sonic, we can also mention the Advance series, which can be defined as the 2D version of Sonic Adventure or preferentially the 2D Games of the Adventure Era, still when we didn't had that idea of 2D Sonic = Classic Sonic and 3D Sonic = Adventure and Modern. Passed the time, Sonic Rush still received a sequel "Sonic Rush Adventure" as well what some consider an indirect sequel, the DS version of Sonic Colors. For Mario, in this matter specifically, received (and still receive) games from this same series which also don't change much its bases.

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Sonic Colors DS (2011)

About Sonic specifically, something which always made me angry, specially when playing Sonic Generations, is that even on the Modern sections of the game, Sonic passes much of his time on a 2.5D point of view, which is exactly the same Classic Sonic is locked in. Once again, I back to that idea that Classic Sonic is 2D and Modern/Adventure are 3D. I don't know how this apply for Mario because I don't play its game very often but for Sonic is something which really makes me intrigued, so I was asking myself, how well a 2.5D Only Sonic Game could work?

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Sonic Generations "Console" (2011)

Without extending this post more, there's also a few points to be remembered which I think they don't need more explanation on how far they were discussed here in SSMB. So in very short, would you like a 2.5D Only Sonic Game? And if so, how it could be, and how would be your plans for SEGA/Sonic Team's management? Or do you believe Sonic Mania/Similar project could work better (Similar or a better grown-up idea)?

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If it's good.

I don't particularly care how many dimensions a game is in or how its graphics are rendered; as long as the game is fun, the visuals are at least decent, and the characters and story seem interesting, I'm in. And I can't think of any reason why a 2.5D Sonic couldn't work; they've already taken plenty of shots at it starting with Unleashed, and while I wouldn't call any of them ideal, it's not being 2.5D that's behind their issues.

That said I don't think there's any particular need for 2.5D Sonics. Being able to weave a 2D path through 3D space lets you do some visual/presentation tricks but it doesn't really add much mechanically, and I think you can get some problems with different paths intersecting and crossing over each other, which is something pretty important to 2D Sonic level design. It's just something you've got to feel out based on the needs of the game and the resources you have available.

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Yeah, 2.5D and 2D don't make a lot of difference, unless is something like Klonoa for PSX with a really dynamic level design. The important thing is for that to be good. And I know some people are tired of 2D but... I wouldn't mind at all a 2D (handrawn or pixelart) Modern game. If it is good, hell yeah, why not? Modern doesn't have to be exclusive to the 3rd dimension...

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I think we've kinda been overstuffed with both 2.5D games and side-scrolling sections in [supposedly] 3D games, that I'd rather focus on purely 2D or purely 3D games for the time being.

But I will say this--if we do get a purely 2.5D game again, I hope they take cues from Classic Sonic in Generations. I really liked how the designers actually took advantage of 3D graphics to have dynamic camera movements (with different angles and camera pans) and have the level design exist on multiple planes. It was honestly a fun concept that I haven't seen utilized in many 2D Sonic games. Sky Sanctuary in particular excelled at this and why it's my favorite level in the entire game. It also helps define the entirety of City Escape due to how the GUN Truck was incorporated to chase you around and even through the environment.

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It would be nice to see a 2.5D Sonic game take these ideas and develop it further. The main idea I'd like to see it taken with is a 2.5D game that has the gameplay locked to one plane, but the level design isn't, with eight-way style paths designed in a 3D setting. Something like Bug!, albeit much less "early 3D videogame" and much more contemporary and polished.

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Like Diogenes said, if it's good, then sure.

I'm a big fan of the Classic series, but I also like plenty of the Modern games like Unleashed, Adventure 1 and 2 and Generations. I even like Sonic Advance and the Rush games. I'm less concerned what perspective the camera is in and more that the game doesn't suck. I truly don't care what gameplay style it is, either. Just give me something well designed and fun to play.

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What I would like to see is a 2.5D side scrolling Sonic game, but mixed in with what they do in 2D beat em ups, i.e. the camera is somewhat tilted so the ground is visible and the character can move up and down along a limited plane, besides being able to move left and right.

The game would mostly control like the traditional 2D Sonic games, with the exception of either the up/down directions moving the character up/down along the plane, or there would be separete buttons to move the character up/down the plane, with the down direction retaining the functionaliy of crouching/rolling.

This could be used to add a bit of 'depth' to the stages. Having obstacles in the upper lane, so the player has to move the character to the lower lane, or there's a different path in the lower lane so the player has to move the character to the lower lane to access that path.

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19 hours ago, Tarnish said:

What I would like to see is a 2.5D side scrolling Sonic game, but mixed in with what they do in 2D beat em ups, i.e. the camera is somewhat tilted so the ground is visible and the character can move up and down along a limited plane, besides being able to move left and right.

The game would mostly control like the traditional 2D Sonic games, with the exception of either the up/down directions moving the character up/down along the plane, or there would be separete buttons to move the character up/down the plane, with the down direction retaining the functionaliy of crouching/rolling.

This could be used to add a bit of 'depth' to the stages. Having obstacles in the upper lane, so the player has to move the character to the lower lane, or there's a different path in the lower lane so the player has to move the character to the lower lane to access that path.

So conceptually something like SegaSonic or Flickies' Island, but with modern production values and designed to be more of a 2D game instead of isometric?

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6 hours ago, Milo said:

So conceptually something like SegaSonic or Flickies' Island, but with modern production values and designed to be more of a 2D game instead of isometric?

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Sort of I guess.

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I don't mind, as long as it has the minimum effort of Generations Classic Stages put into it. Those stages were absolutely popping with life and detail and it was wonderful.

Personally wouldn't mind letting Taxman continue with his pseudo 32-bit 2D Sonic, but would actually really love for them to evolve it into like a hand-drawn sprite based 2D sidescroller. Something like Rayman Origins/Legends. Still broadly flat and 2D, but with beautiful high-res, handdrawn assets rather than the current 16/32-bit-style assets.

Ultimately anything that isn't the pre-rendered garbage that Sonic 4 E1 was, is absolutely fine. But a 2D high-res sprite based evolution of Mania is ideal for 2D games imo.

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I never got the point of 3d graphics in a sidescrolling game, it's just confusing to me.
It was cute in the Saturn/ PSX era I guess, but we're hardly impressed by basic 3d effects now.
Now I'm just irritated when it's harder for me to see where platforms start or end because of the perspective trickery.

If it's 2d sidescrolling gameplay, give it 2d art. With smooth updated Sonic advance esque animations and some beautiful handpainted backgrounds like Rayman's later games , great. Unless they really DO something with the 3d graphics, like indeed the GUN truck coming in and smashing the level design.
Altough I'm pretty sure you can pull off stunts like that with 2d graphics too.

If we're cheating and including (limited) 3d gameplay in this 2.5 d games like Bug!, I would like to see a 3d Sonic game done in the style of Mario 3d land/ world with the camera locked. Seems to me to be the best inbetween option of 2D/ 3D, the immersion and depth of 3d but the cohesion and visual communication of a 2d game.(Basically, not worrying about camera controls)

As for pure sidescrolling 2.5 d games like most of Modern Sonic....It Really depends on the level design, gameplay style and how honest the game is with itself.
Sonic generations 3ds was okay. If Sega remembers to make the Sonic game a Sonic game and not a Nintendo esque puzzle platformer, I'm fine. It's my least favorite option available, but it's fine. Soon as I see Wisp puzzles or blocky level design, I'm out, tough.
Go make an Alex Kidd sequel already if that's the only level design they can figure out these days..
Or at least make Sonic slower ala the game gear games. I don't see the point of having a super fast Sonic when the level design is claustropobic, it's like driving a dragracer on a go-kart track.

And Sega, be HONEST about it and don't try to trick us into thinking it's a 3d game. People like 2d games, no need to be ashamed of it.
I just can't stand Sega's dishonest marketing and inability to make hard decisions on anything.
Make a decision and STICK to it this time. You might win me over even on a game I don't like at first if I see you put a lot of thought and effort into it. Panicking and desperatly throwing in alien aspects into your game to try and trick me into thinking it's better or diffrent or is "appeasing" my part of the fanbase will just piss me off at this point.

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