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Highs and lows of Sonic in the 2010s

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I had to check and make sure sonic 4 released in 2010. that's still king shit so technically we've been on the up since the start. no matter how bad sonic forces or whatever is it cant top sonic 4 in just being a waste of brain space for everybody remotely involved.

 I don't really have to talk about every main series game I didn't like because sonic 4 represents the cynical, calculated pandering that defines most of what I don't like about this decade of Sonic perfectly. Wearing the skin of acclaimed Sonic games while refusing to address the actual structural problems with the way the newer games work not only represented a startling lack of understanding about...everything, but it degraded the iconography many players held so dear. I never want to see a green hill zone or a chubby Sonic ever again. I don't want to see Shadow fight Sonic. I don't want to hear Chemical Plant or Supporting Me or Rooftop Run. I don't want to see budget cuts and lack of content sold as 'returning to Sonic's roots' and 'trimming the BS'

Biggest thing I want for the series next decade is creativity. I just want a new, fully featured action platformer with Sonic on the box. 

But I promised myself would focus on the positives this post and to be honest there was a lot to like even if there wasn't much I loved. Generations, ASRT and Mania are all games that brought me a lot of joy: Specifically in bringing back that arcadey level of replayability that last decade...kinda lacked in most of the games. My personal tastes changed a lot over the course of the decade so the fact that Gens and ASRT specifically remained in my good graces is pretty good.

Mania gets it's own spot here for being the one game to come out in almost 2 decades where Sonic is just a joy to control again with no asterisks. That would have been enough on it's own but the level design is on another level even compared to the best games in the series or in the genre. It's just so dense filled with branching paths, mini challenges and secrets everywhere. It feels like I'm playing the game wrong when I speed run it just because there's so much to play around with.

I don't like a lot of things about Colors but I do like the feel-good atmosphere of the game a lot and it has one of the strongest visual identities of the series despite the console it's on and the short dev time giving it every excuse not to. 

The shorts are wonderful. My favorite was the Mania Adventures christmas special for getting to the heart of why Amy is one of the best characters. I hope all the noise about her lately pays off and I get to see more of her next decade.

Tyson Hesse in general has been a high point in making a character that's been rendered stiffly for far too long and reminding everyone just how perfect his design is. 

Speaking of art: The comics. Post reboot Archie, Mega Drive, IDW: I actually dug the hell out of all of that stuff and reading through Ian's early work today reminded me of just how much he's improved over time as a writer. Artists I've been watching for 10 years improving to the point where they came to IDW delivering top quality stuff.

And well, shit, there's my favorite part of the decade right there: Seeing creatives who invested so much into Sonic getting their payoff by not just getting their fucking bread from Sega but improving the series for the better. They toiled through the cynicism in and out of the fanbase saying their fangames wouldn't ever get finished or that their art was cringe and not worth indulging in and they gave us some of the best Sonic content we've had in decades on every front: Comics, games, and animation. I genuinely believe the series is gonna be on the come up next decade thanks to this push. 
 

 

 

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9 hours ago, DabigRG said:

Cheese and Rice, tell us how you really feel. 

Maybe it wasn't smart of me to make a post covering the entire decade on the last post before a new page began but I'm happy I did. I love writing and going back through the history of the decade reminded me of stuff I had forgotten.

Plus, the green, yellow, and red system is a nice way of letting people know my opinion on something without them needing to read the whole thing.

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9 hours ago, Wraith said:

I don't want to see budget cuts and lack of content sold as 'returning to Sonic's roots' and 'trimming the BS'

Biggest thing I want for the series next decade is creativity. I just want a new, fully featured action platformer with Sonic on the box. 

The shorts are wonderful. My favorite was the Mania Adventures christmas special for getting to the heart of why Amy is one of the best characters. I hope all the noise about her lately pays off and I get to see more of her next decade.

And well, shit, there's my favorite part of the decade right there: Seeing creatives who invested so much into Sonic getting their payoff by not just getting their fucking bread from Sega but improving the series for the better. They toiled through the cynicism in and out of the fanbase saying their fangames wouldn't ever get finished or that their art was cringe and not worth indulging in and they gave us some of the best Sonic content we've had in decades on every front: Comics, games, and animation. I genuinely believe the series is gonna be on the come up next decade thanks to this push. 

Quoted the parts I agree with the most.

Going back to both reviews and fan comments from the early 2010s, there's so much hatred of what makes the Sonic series Sonic to me, it's really sad. I have to be honest that it was so negative at the time, I thought they were right. Late 2000s was "The Dark Age", boost was praised to the heavens, Sonic's friends were bashed to hell, Adventure's rerelease got horrible reviews. Everyone was so sure about what sucked about Sonic and that anyone who thought differently just had blind nostalgia. So while I still would check up on him now and then, I spent a lot of the 2010s away from Sonic. I wish I had found this forum sooner, forums are my preferred way of posting but many I used to browse died out in favor of social media and discord. (I love discord but I don't want every fandom I like to turn into a real time chat) Within the past few months I've learned a lot of the hate wasn't true, and that the parts of Sonic I like wasn't the problem, but several factors like changes in staff, rushing games, things lost in translation, etc. So ironically enough despite this year not having a main Sonic game I find myself more excited than ever. Not because of the games, but rediscovering what I liked in the past as well as having hope for the future for the first time in a long time, even if only cautious hope.

I love the animated shorts so much, I wish they had been a thing sooner but it's probably for the best. Hopefully they continue it.

As for the comics, I never picked up the old comics. I never went to a comic store until after Archie had already ended. I used to enjoy looking at the covers in the gamecube Sonic collection games though. I'm kind of glad about IDW as it's a chance for people like me to keep up with the comics without having 20+ years of back issues. My opinion is mixed on some parts (like Shadow) but I'm enjoying it so far and the new characters too. Nothing against Archie, if I had a say it would have been nice to have both still running.

Also I did read all of your post Dr. Detective Mike. Makes me a bit less self conscious about the length of my rambling. I think the color coding is a nice touch.

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7 hours ago, Dr. Detective Mike said:

Maybe it wasn't smart of me to make a post covering the entire decade on the last post before a new page began but I'm happy I did. I love writing and going back through the history of the decade reminded me of stuff I had forgotten.

Plus, the green, yellow, and red system is a nice way of letting people know my opinion on something without them needing to read the whole thing.

Agreed--it made my response even funnier. :joy:

But really, I appreciate the post as well since it indeed covered things that may have been forgotten or may not be considered on their own merits in a brief, but meaningful amount of breadth.

I was really only flabbergasted that you didn't spoiler the paragraphs themselves for ease of scrolling, especially since I was personally on my phone when I saw it.

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16 minutes ago, DabigRG said:

Agreed--it made my response even funnier. :joy:

But really, I appreciate the post as well since it indeed covered things that may have been forgotten or may not be considered on their own merits in a brief, but meaningful amount of breadth.

I was really only flabbergasted that you didn't spoiler the paragraphs themselves for ease of scrolling, especially since I was personally on my phone when I saw it.

Well, the reason for that is because I didn't think of it.

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Alright, my highs and lows for the series in the past 10 years. I'll start off by saying that I unfortunately gradually distanced myself from the series in this decade. I became increasingly dissatisfied with the franchise and having so many people tell me that the games that I grew up with and loved just soured me overall. I grew to love other franchises that catered to my desires and found a much more welcoming community to be apart of. So while Sonic will always be apart of my life, I can't say that I feel the same level of passion that I did for it as I did in the 2000's. Hopefully that will change this decade, because I don't want to feel this way and I still feel this series has tons of untapped potential that just needs the right person who actually cares enough to bring it out. 

Moving on, I'll try to keep this brief and divide things into two categories:

Highs:

2010-2014: The first half of the decade was probably the best time for the series in years. We had two good games in Colors and Generations, and while Lost World wasn't exactly great, it didn't do that much damage to the series and had Boom not released a year later, people probably would have just seen it as a slight misstep. Sonic 4 was a soulless cash grab, that the general public unfortunately ate up anyway, but I at least appreciate the attempt to improve it with Episode 2, even if the product was still pretty mediocre. We got a kickass port of Sonic CD, which instantly elevated it to one of my favorite games.

The comics had actually started to get my interest, and I was surprisingly hooked. The reboot was kind of bittersweet because while it rebooted into a universe much more easy to follow, I had began to grow attached to the original Archie verse and their cast, and to see it come to an unceremonious end really stung.

I may not have liked the direction the series was headed, but I at least took comfort the reputation was improving and that games were actually good to play. We got ASR and ASRT as well, and I unfortunately missed out on the hype for both games as I can see they were very popular and wished I took part in that. And now...

Lows:

2015-2019: We reach the second half of the decade, and this where things start falling apart sadly. Boom released and it was a disaster. Nobody could believe that a game that the series would produce something as bad as 06 eight years prior, but here we are. Everybody was ripping Boom a new one, from major gaming LPers like Game Grumps to gaming journalists. All of the good will that was built up in those first four years was now dead and gone. And Sega KNEW they fucked up, because they refused to send review copies out and put an embargo up. 

People kept saying things like "Oh they'll get it right next time" or "it's just a spin off" and these are the same exact excuses I heard a decade prior. So I basically just waved my white flag and acknowledged that this series is just doomed to never be beyond mediocre and will just always be a laughing stock. I was just very...tired at that point. 

On top of that, the Archie Comics came to yet another unceremonious end just as I, once again, became interested in the background for the series. IT felt like whenever this series was about to its stride, it stumbles at the last second. 

And naturally, the series just went radio silent until late 2016 when Mania and Forces were announced; I was skeptical of the former, mostly because I had no real knowledge of the developers or what they did until I realized they did the awesome CD part back in 2011, and my interest grew. Forces...yea, I was interested until I saw Classic Sonic at which point my interest quickly died as I knew what was happening; it was another cash grab trying to use the good will earned from Colors and GEnerations to garner interest. I was savvy at that point, so I refused to be sucked in and all but ignored Forces and focused on Mania. 

The fateful day comes in 2017; as I saw more and more footage of Mania, my interest and hype kept growing. It was the first time I was truly interested in a Sonic game since Unleashed. When they released that trailer in June, I knew I had to buy the game. It had the one thing I wanted from the series for so long; passion, love, and quality. I truly felt like the devs wanted to not only make a good game, they wanted to make one for the fans who have to endure so much and they fucking delivered and it's become one of my favorite games in the franchise as a result. Mania means so much to me because it shows that people DO love Sonic, that he CAN be good in the right hands; between Whitehead, Tyson Heese, Tee Lopes, they breathe much needed life into the series and didn't need to cut half of the fat to do it. 

And then we had Forces...contrary to everyone else, I was pretty apathetic, mostly because I had already written the game off months prior. Everything about the game had the same soulless feeling that I had previously felt about the series and I kinda figured it wouldn't deliver. The sad part about Forces though is that I feel it was the point when most fans just gave up as well. There was a small outrage but then it quickly quieted. Given how AMAZING Mania was, and it only took a few people with passion in their heart to make it happen, Forces just served to highlight how directionless and devoid of passion the series had been for years prior. It felt like Sega just did not care about the series at all, so it's when fans just started to stop caring and it's one of the saddest things I've seen in this series, more than the 06 fall out.

That being said, the last two years weren't all that bad; we got a new comic series that, while it hasn't hit it's stride yet, is steadily improving at the very least and I hope it continues that upward climb. We got extra content for Mania in Plus and Adventures; the latter giving these characters the personality and character they so desperately lacked. Team Sonic Racing, while not as good as ASRT, was still a solid title in it's own right with a superb soundtrack and as well as giving us another great short with Team Sonic Racing Overdrive to finally highlight the Modern cast.

So yea, things started off good, then they torpedoed downward around the middle of the decade, and started to pick themselves up near the end, but not without some battle scars. At the very least, I hope Mania makes Sega realize that there are people who care about this series and want to do it justice. They just have to find them. Even the Adventure games, titles that people initially written off as "relics of the past" are now seeing a resurgence in notability in people posting TONS of retrospectives to pushback the criticisms they got, and I think people REALLY want to see a return to that style so it can be done justice with modern technology and the right team. 

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On 12/31/2019 at 5:27 PM, Monkey Destruction Switch said:

Yeah, honestly whenever I look at Sonic Forces' cover and see Classic Sonic there, it's just so cringeworthy to me, like it's one of those old Sonic fan comics or other low-quality Sonic fan material where Classic Sonic is portrayed as a separate character. Even as a kid, I thought that was silly because it's obviously the same character. And Sega chooses to follow that ridiculous idea...

I actually like the idea of them being separate dimensions. It means they can go back to that art style without having to shoehorn the associated story as a prequel to Adventure. Although to me, I always had trouble viewing the Classic characters and Modern ones as the same characters. Either way, I agree that they shouldn’t be mingling with each other. 
 

Anyway, I will always remember this past 10 years as a retread of the one before, in a general sense. Sonic Colors and Generations are this decade’s SA and SA2 in terms of quality. Then Lost World (Heroes) marks a major step down. Then we get a misguided attempt to cater to a new market with Sonic Boom (Shadow the Hedgehog), followed by a colossal disappointment with Sonic Forces (Sonic 06). Finally this is bookended by a surprisingly good  racing game in Team Sonic Racing (Sonic and Sega All-Stars Racing). There is no analogy to Sonic Mania or Unleashed, so it’s not really the same, but the parallels that do exist are remarkable imo. 

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36 minutes ago, Whatever the WhoCares said:

Anyway, I will always remember this past 10 years as a retread of the one before, in a general sense. Sonic Colors and Generations are this decade’s SA and SA2 in terms of quality. Then Lost World (Heroes) marks a major step down. Then we get a misguided attempt to cater to a new market with Sonic Boom (Shadow the Hedgehog), followed by a colossal disappointment with Sonic Forces (Sonic 06). Finally this is bookended by a surprisingly good  racing game in Team Sonic Racing (Sonic and Sega All-Stars Racing). There is no analogy to Sonic Mania or Unleashed, so it’s not really the same, but the parallels that do exist are remarkable imo. 

That's the way the Sonic Cycle rolls. It's not perfect and it has its ups and downs but it's the way things go and I'm fine with that. We'll have our 06s and Booms but we'll also get our Generations and Manias. Sonic's future can be both good and bad, but I believe one thing's for sure, it's bright with new possibilities. These possibilities could lead to great successes or agonizing failures, but no matter what, Sonic is living on.

As for the dimension thing, I only accept that with one condition, Mania/Classic Sonic is an alternate TIMELINE instead of an alternate reality entirely, with said timeline being the one where Generations Classic met his future self while Generations Modern himself didn't when he was still Classic. So the only difference in the "alternate dimension" is when Generations happened. Wibbly Wobbly Timey Wimey and all that.

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9 minutes ago, Marco9966 said:

I think they will do a bad game again for the next anniversary. Change my mind

This isn't constructive to the topic at hand whatsoever. In fact, none of your posts here have been so far - I had to delete one where you simply repeated what you said on the first page. If you're only interested in posting reactionary calls to action and Twitter-style hot takes, then keep them to the statuses.

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12 hours ago, Whatever the WhoCares said:

I actually like the idea of them being separate dimensions. It means they can go back to that art style without having to shoehorn the associated story as a prequel to Adventure. Although to me, I always had trouble viewing the Classic characters and Modern ones as the same characters. Either way, I agree that they shouldn’t be mingling with each other.

You're trying to make the artstyle change done to make Sonic more appealing in the new millennium into something that stands for a time shift. It's not. Otherwise the characters would all be older rather than just Amy. And there's no actual personality differences between the OVA's versions and Adventure's characters.

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21 minutes ago, Almar said:

You're trying to make the artstyle change done to make Sonic more appealing in the new millennium into something that stands for a time shift. It's not. Otherwise the characters would all be older rather than just Amy. And there's no actual personality differences between the OVA's versions and Adventure's characters.

Errr, technically Sonic isn't as standoffish and Eggman wasn't sinister. 

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Highs:

Sonic Generations

Sonic Racing Transformed

Sonic Boom TV Series & Toyline

IDW Comic Books

Sonic returning to the Macy's Parade

Sonic getting a Monopoly game (Unfortunately I didn't get a chance to buy one, but it's pretty cool they made one)

Tyson Hesse animations like Mania Adventures & Overdrive

Lows:

Pontac & Graff jokey writing style

Love Roger Craig Smith right now, but it was kind of an adjustment at first getting used to Sonic's new voice.

Introduction of OrBot & CuBot

 

 

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12 minutes ago, DabigRG said:

Errr, technically Sonic isn't as standoffish and Eggman wasn't sinister. 

Adventure One's Sonic was willing enough to ignore Tails when he was cramping his style and shrug when he crashes. And Eggman wasn't really more sinister in the OVA? More tricky, sure. He was just as willing to commit mass murder in Adventure One.

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For me.
Favorite Sonic game this decade: Sonic robo blast 2.2. After all the stupid pseudo fake "Sonic 3d platformers" I suffered trough that keep forgetting to contain 3d gameplay, be platformers, and often even forget to be actual Sonic games, it's nice to be reminded what an actual 3d Sonic game could be like. I don't care it's a fangame. This decade, all the best Sonic games are either made by a third party studio or fans.
Sonic Team got it's butt kicked by everyone but the Sonic Boom development teams.

Most hated game this decade: Sonic Boom Shattered Crystals. The only game I can't beat not because it's too hard, but because it's too boring. My brain keeps shutting off out of boredom and goes on autopilot.
Which means I keep beating the 20 minute long levels without all the collectables and having to start all over. Arghh. Shame Rise of Lyric has so many glitches so the internet focuses on that game as the spectacular failure. Because for my money, Shattered Crystal is way worse. Rise of Lyric is mere mediocre and low energy, rather then "Brain shuts off in protest" boring. At least Fire and Ice fixed it's issues and was an actually decent game.

Most underrated game this decade: Sonic Boom fire and ice.
Poor Fire and Ice. It did it's best to improve itself from Shattered Crystals, and I think it did, I thought it was a decent platformer.
It even performed a miracle and got Pontac and Graff to write one or two jokes that made me chuckle for the first time.
But it was doomed from the start. Bad marketing, the previous Boom games killed anyone's interest.
And thus ends Sonic's carreer on the handheld systems. Damn shame for both Fire and Ice and any other handheld games we could have had.

Coolest thing this decade: The many, many, many awesome remixes we had. Despite Smash Bros and M&S at the Olympics snobbing the Sonic music, we had some cool remixes in a lot of other places.
Sonic music always rules. Only Sonic Boom somehow missed that memo.
Altough to be fair, Shattered Crystal and Fire and Ice had one or two decent tracks.

Suckiest thing this decade: The complete and utter destruction of story telling, characterization, any kind of world for Sonic to exist in.
Sonic has turned entirely into a character driven comedy. Except with most of the characterization eliminated as well, leaving me with nothing.
Everything as far as the Sonic cast and the world they live in feels like a detached dead sterile series of soulless museum exhibits.
Congrats "Only gameplay matters" folk, you won. My ability to give a damn about any character or Sonic's world has been utterly nuked from existance.
Don't think that'll make me stop complaining and joking about it tough. It's the only joy I got left, since gameplay fails most of the time as well.

Best surprise this decade: Lego Dimensions. Despite I'm completely sick of the eternal meta reference parade I 've suffered trough over and over and over and over and over this decade, Lego did a great job at it, I enjoyed it. Not only did I finally get proper 3d gameplay, some gags that did get me to chuckle, but Sonic Dimensions also has the weird honor of being the only Sonic game this decade that made cutscenes feel exciting.
Amazing what diffrence it makes when characters actually move, talk in more snappy sentences and there's thrilling background music, rather then the sleep inducing slow "look how clever I am!!!" borefest every other Sonic media tortures me with.
And now I don't want to see another celebration of the past game again for the next 20 years.

Worst surprise this year: Realising half of Sonic's entire life span has almost passed since Sonic 06. Genuine 3d gameplay, Sonic's friends being relevant and decent story telling have all been shredded out of existance for the sake of Sonic Team going on a journey of self reflection and finally creating the perfect pure Sonic game. Which is all noble and great, except despite having half of Sonic's lifespan to do so in, they still haven't figured out a damn thing yet. Generations gave me brief hope they're on the right track but they tumbled right off a cliff again.
Thank god for third party development teams and fangames.

Wish for the next decade: For God's sake Sonic Team, FOCUS. I don't care what you do for the next game, 2d/ 3d. Comedy, Serious. Boost, platforming.
Gritty war drama, zany priate adventure. Sonic Colors 2, Sonic Adventure 3, Sonic Mania Sonic Team edition. Whatever it is you're doing, DO IT.
Your biggest weakness and main cause for my lack of respect and trust in you is you being all wishy washy and unable to stick to your guns on anything.
To hell with these stupid 2d/ 3d hybrid games, to hell with the Teasers and trailers showing an entirely diffrent game then the final product.
Have a vision, Stick to it and proudly and honestly present what you're doing.
I'm probably the rare weirdo, but I prefer a game having a stupid premise but at least going 100% trough with it like Shadow.
At least people who like the concept will get what they want, and everyone else gets to enjoy a spectacular trainwreck.
But Modern Sonic is all over the place and satisfies noone, sarcastically or otherwise.

Also don't bother including a storymode if you're going to put zero effort into it anyway. Either tell me a good story and remind me why I used to care about these characters, or just keep it a Videogame for Videogame's sake.

And fix the characters and Sonic's world too. Ah, never mind, might as well ask for the moon.

So yeah, here's to the next decade.
I'll raise a glass and cheer to all the Mods that'll clean up the next incomprehensible mess from Sonic Team.

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39 minutes ago, Roger_van_der_weide said:

For me.
Favorite Sonic game this decade: Sonic robo blast 2.2. After all the stupid pseudo fake "Sonic 3d platformers" I suffered trough that keep forgetting to contain 3d gameplay, be platformers, and often even forget to be actual Sonic games, it's nice to be reminded what an actual 3d Sonic game could be like. I don't care it's a fangame. This decade, all the best Sonic games are either made by a third party studio or fans.
Sonic Team got it's butt kicked by everyone but the Sonic Boom development teams.

Most hated game this decade: Sonic Boom Shattered Crystals. The only game I can't beat not because it's too hard, but because it's too boring. My brain keeps shutting off out of boredom and goes on autopilot.
Which means I keep beating the 20 minute long levels without all the collectables and having to start all over. Arghh. Shame Rise of Lyric has so many glitches so the internet focuses on that game as the spectacular failure. Because for my money, Shattered Crystal is way worse. Rise of Lyric is mere mediocre and low energy, rather then "Brain shuts off in protest" boring. At least Fire and Ice fixed it's issues and was an actually decent game.

Most underrated game this decade: Sonic Boom fire and ice.
Poor Fire and Ice. It did it's best to improve itself from Shattered Crystals, and I think it did, I thought it was a decent platformer.
It even performed a miracle and got Pontac and Graff to write one or two jokes that made me chuckle for the first time.
But it was doomed from the start. Bad marketing, the previous Boom games killed anyone's interest.
And thus ends Sonic's carreer on the handheld systems. Damn shame for both Fire and Ice and any other handheld games we could have had.

Coolest thing this decade: The many, many, many awesome remixes we had. Despite Smash Bros and M&S at the Olympics snobbing the Sonic music, we had some cool remixes in a lot of other places.
Sonic music always rules. Only Sonic Boom somehow missed that memo.
Altough to be fair, Shattered Crystal and Fire and Ice had one or two decent tracks.

Suckiest thing this decade: The complete and utter destruction of story telling, characterization, any kind of world for Sonic to exist in.
Sonic has turned entirely into a character driven comedy. Except with most of the characterization eliminated as well, leaving me with nothing.
Everything as far as the Sonic cast and the world they live in feels like a detached dead sterile series of soulless museum exhibits.
Congrats "Only gameplay matters" folk, you won. My ability to give a damn about any character or Sonic's world has been utterly nuked from existance.
Don't think that'll make me stop complaining and joking about it tough. It's the only joy I got left, since gameplay fails most of the time as well.

Best surprise this decade: Lego Dimensions. Despite I'm completely sick of the eternal meta reference parade I 've suffered trough over and over and over and over and over this decade, Lego did a great job at it, I enjoyed it. Not only did I finally get proper 3d gameplay, some gags that did get me to chuckle, but Sonic Dimensions also has the weird honor of being the only Sonic game this decade that made cutscenes feel exciting.
Amazing what diffrence it makes when characters actually move, talk in more snappy sentences and there's thrilling background music, rather then the sleep inducing slow "look how clever I am!!!" borefest every other Sonic media tortures me with.
And now I don't want to see another celebration of the past game again for the next 20 years.

Worst surprise this year: Realising half of Sonic's entire life span has almost passed since Sonic 06. Genuine 3d gameplay, Sonic's friends being relevant and decent story telling have all been shredded out of existance for the sake of Sonic Team going on a journey of self reflection and finally creating the perfect pure Sonic game. Which is all noble and great, except despite having half of Sonic's lifespan to do so in, they still haven't figured out a damn thing yet. Generations gave me brief hope they're on the right track but they tumbled right off a cliff again.
Thank god for third party development teams and fangames.

Wish for the next decade: For God's sake Sonic Team, FOCUS. I don't care what you do for the next game, 2d/ 3d. Comedy, Serious. Boost, platforming.
Gritty war drama, zany priate adventure. Sonic Colors 2, Sonic Adventure 3, Sonic Mania Sonic Team edition. Whatever it is you're doing, DO IT.
Your biggest weakness and main cause for my lack of respect and trust in you is you being all wishy washy and unable to stick to your guns on anything.
To hell with these stupid 2d/ 3d hybrid games, to hell with the Teasers and trailers showing an entirely diffrent game then the final product.
Have a vision, Stick to it and proudly and honestly present what you're doing.
I'm probably the rare weirdo, but I prefer a game having a stupid premise but at least going 100% trough with it like Shadow.
At least people who like the concept will get what they want, and everyone else gets to enjoy a spectacular trainwreck.
But Modern Sonic is all over the place and satisfies noone, sarcastically or otherwise.

Also don't bother including a storymode if you're going to put zero effort into it anyway. Either tell me a good story and remind me why I used to care about these characters, or just keep it a Videogame for Videogame's sake.

And fix the characters and Sonic's world too. Ah, never mind, might as well ask for the moon.

So yeah, here's to the next decade.
I'll raise a glass and cheer to all the Mods that'll clean up the next incomprehensible mess from Sonic Team.

Also, this decade is notable for "exceptions that prove the rule", such as Forces. That is the definition of an exception that proves the rule. It's an exception to other characters not being relevant anymore, no more solid stories, etc., but does it in a way that makes it seem understandable why even many non-Sonic Team developers stick to these rules (or at least guidelines, given that things like IDW and the movie exist, but they too may be "exceptions that prove the rule"), due to things like dry exposition. Rise of Lyric is another one. Despite establishing a new world, the world is as boring as the rehashed worlds of its compatriots, and the other characters play so badly that it feels like a slog. Honestly, with all this into account, the attempts to make the characters matter count less and less when you consider what these attempts are surrounded by.

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22 minutes ago, Almar said:

The characters besides Sonic, Eggman, OC, and Infinite weren't really relevant. Maybe Silver and Rouge too in a pinch.

And Tails, technically. 

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What’s also remarkable is how this decade ended. We know so incredibly little about the next game. Usually when a piece of media is probably coming out within 16 months, the public at least has a vague idea of what it’s about. With Sonic, it’s just one giant question mark. What consoles will it be for? Who is directing it? What’s the plot synopsis? The suspense isn’t exactly killing me, but it is pretty exceptional at this point. 

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5 minutes ago, Whatever the WhoCares said:

What’s also remarkable is how this decade ended. We know so incredibly little about the next game. Usually when a piece of media is probably coming out within 16 months, the public at least us a vague idea of what it’s about. With Sonic, it’s just one giant question mark. What consoles will it be for? Who is directing it? What’s the plot synopsis? The suspense isn’t exactly killing me, but it is pretty exceptional at this point. 

Nah it's actually pretty common now for game developers to wait until a product is closer to release before revealing it aside from maybe some of the biggest names in the medium.

And I prefer it this way. Better I see gameplay first than a CGI trailer.

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5 minutes ago, Wraith said:

Nah it's actually pretty common now for game developers to wait until a product is closer to release before revealing it aside from maybe some of the biggest names in the medium.

And I prefer it this way. Better I see gameplay first than a CGI trailer.

I’ll take your word for it, although I hadn’t noticed. And yeah, a CG trailer wouldn’t cut it for me either. 

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Here's a good comic-related low point that frustrated the hell out of me for years.

Graphic Novels 

I know it's kind of been clouded now, due to the overall awful way Archie ended up sinking the Archie Sonic ship (I'll be mentioning at in more detail at some point too, even though @Dr. Detective Mike handled it very well.

But graphic novels isn't something I've seen mentioned in a ton of detail so far. The way Archie was handling the Archie Sonic, and Mega Man Graphic Novels, running up to the end was absolutely horrible, especially if you were someone looking to get into the series, and ended up late, like me. There was so many issues, so let's just run through them.

Oversaturation: 

There was such a massive problem with oversaturation of Graphic Novels when I started reading Archie Sonic in 2013, so much so that it was a bit overwhelming. For a general idea, we had: 

  • Sonic Archives - Recollecting EVERYTHING from the original miniseries, in recommended reading order, barring the Super Specials unless absolutely required.
  • Sonic Selects - Recollecting random stories from Super Specials, crossovers, and game-related stories.
  • Best of Sonic the Hedgehog - Very confused way of doing it. The first book did not have a particular theme, it was just a high-quality grabbing of favourite Sonic stories from the creative team. Books 2, and the cancelled Book 3 then decided to do themes instead - the second book being Villains, and the third book being Rivals. This then went out the window for a low quality small book which tried to fit in Book 1, Book 2, and some very little of the content planned for the Cancelled Book 3 into 1 book for a budget price, while cutting out a ton of stories.
  • Sonic Legacy - Collecting EVERYTHING from the start, only in low-quality Black and White budget books, based on DC/Marvel's at the time budget black and white books.
  • Sonic Saga Series - Created because Archie was impatient and wanted to collect Ian's issues. Fair enough, good idea for everyone who wanted to skip the Penders era, and so on, but riddled with problems. The issues were out of order, several backup stories were randomly cut, and even parts of Ian's actual run was cut (Both issues of Birthday Bash were gone, starting the series with Darkest Storm instead)
  • Knuckles Archives - Recollecting Penders' Knuckles series, you can guess how this ended when the lawsuit happened.
  • Sonic Universe - Recollecting all of the Sonic Universe arcs, it randomly stopped when it got to Babylon Rising, which we'll talk in more detail about.
  • Sonic Universe Sagas - Created to recollect the post 252 Universe arcs. Pirate Plunder Panic and Shadow Fall were planned, and cancelled.
  • Sonic the Hedgehog - Created to recollect the post 252 Sonic issues. Got as far as Control before being canned. Infamous for never getting to recollect Champions.
  • Worlds Collide - You had three regular GNs for the entirety of Worlds Collide, plus a omnibus release that collected stuff not found in the original three GNs, specifically the prologue sections of Sonic and MM leading into the crossover IIRC
  • Worlds Unite - It didn't even get the full three GNs out, we're missing Volume 3.
  • Sonic Boom - Recollects the Sonic Boom series
  • Sonic Super Special Magazine - Technically a magazine, but on subject - it mainly recollected specific stories at one point - getting as far as having issues based on recollecting the entirety of Mobius 20YL, and Adventure, before it ended up changing focus to just being a hodge podge of whatever, sprinkled with random canon stories that you could only get here.
  • Sonic Super Digest - See above
  • Sonic Genesis - Special reprint of the Genesis arc, a one off basically.
  • Comics Spectacular - Another new GN series being planned that would basically just be random stories reprinted again
  • Sonic Mega Drive - a reprint of the Mega Drive arc that got canned.
  • Sonic Comic Encyclopedia - A total history of the comic, and all of it's lore...that became outdated in less than a year due to Worlds Collide.
  • Art of Sonic the Hedgehog - An art book that got cancelled.

Totalling all of those up, you have 18 GN series, and quite a massive chunk of the mentioned GNs were running co-currently, and you would regular see three, if not more releasing in the same month, IF they released, because...

Delays: 

Oh, delays. The most infamous thing associated with the graphic novels in it's later years. So many of the above mentioned series got delay after delay that it got to the point of ridicule, where even GNs that weren't effected with legal issues were still getting massively delayed. Enerjak Forever, the Silver Saga, Scourge Lockdown, so many of these things took months upon months to finally get. They were delayed time after time again, even though they kept deciding to constantly solict new releases. By the time we were waiting tons of months for Babylon Rising to finally release, Scrambled, Chaotix Quest, and Secret Freedom Fighters were all solicted for release. Saga Series was just as bad. It took forever to get the first part of Bold New Moebius, Hedgehog Havoc, Turnabout is Fair Play, and even Iron Dominion was solicted for release, but we never got Hedgehog Havoc due to delays once again, and then it got outright cancelled when Archie canned the whole lot.

Even Archie Mega Man wasn't safe from this, despite the fact that Mega Man had literally zero legality issues whatsoever. Redemption was delayed, but eventually released, although in far lower quality. Dawn of X was infamous for how many delays it received, alongside how many Babylon Rising got. Legends of the Blue Bomber was solicted for months with a temp cover and everything, as was the Ultimate Betrayal, and it just got nothing for no good reason whatsoever. And while you might have the excuse of Archie Sonic having legal issues, Mega Man had none whatsoever, they just were totally incompetent. All of this while in the middle of releasing Archie complication after Archie complication. It was an infuriating time to be a Sonic or Mega Man fan.

Oh, and also - Mega Man got hit even harder because several of the older GNs went out of print. To this day, Spiritus Ex Machina fetches a pretty penny due to how limited the release was, and how they never bothered restocking it again. They planned to do these "manga style" complications, with 12 issues a pop, but low and behold, even that was cancelled before making store shelves. 

Babylon Rising as I said is probably the one that presented the worst example. It was delayed for many many months, after it'd had already taken a very long time to finally get Silver Saga and Scourge Lockdown. No one wanted this delayed again, especially since Scrambled, and Chaotix Quest were right after it as well. 

What also didn't help was that in between all of this, Archie dicked over the GNs big time by giving them far lower-quality paper, but still charging the exact same price for them. It was getting to the point of absolutely ridiculous by the time the whole thing ended up crashing down with Archie Sonic's cancellation. This will always remain one of the absolutely lowest points to me, it was what made me make a full on Graphic Novel guide that you can still find on the board in an older topic, it's frustrated me the most when I jumped onto the series late and wanted to read older stuff physically, instead of getting them digitally, it was just a nightmare all around.

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