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46 minutes ago, Johnster4 said:

all of a sudden he can't be blamed because he has more control over the spin offs than he does over the mainline games?

That's....not what I said.

Let's be honest. Much as we love to praise it, Sonic Mania wasn't exactly meant to be the big project of its debut year. That games Forces,  the game that the Japan division was working. 

I don't know what's your problem with the situation,  but don't act like a jerk.

Even if Forces turned out good, Iizuka wouldn't have had any say in that matter, unless we'd be informed otherwise.

The point is that a whole tone of blame gets misplaced onto the poor guy, simply because he's the most recognizable name on board, to the point where all the good he's done, gets terribly overlooked.

17 minutes ago, Wraith said:

Maybe take a more mature and well researched stance than "The one guy who's name I know is responsible for everything right/wrong with the brand"

 

On 5/10/2020 at 4:27 AM, Wraith said:

This is why you ignore all mindless "iizuka bad" seething.

And yeah, what Wraith said.

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2 hours ago, Nina Cortex Jovahexeon said:

I don't know what's your problem with the situation,  but don't act like a jerk.

I admit I should have worded the first sentence a little bit better by saying "Help me understand the situation..."

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lol, that's exactly what I've been saying. Iizuka either has all the sayings or none of it. How come the final saying isn't his when he's the head of the studio responsible for making the games? It makes no sense. I guess whatever if he's the head of Sonic Team, then? He has no power or control over what's coming out for Sonic it seems (and I wouldn't blame it on the fact that he's living in Los Angeles). He severely lacks a strong hand. I guess he only has any saying in the games he's directing, something he haven't done since Shadow the Hedgehog. In my honest opinion, it shouldn't be like this. SEGA of Japan is obviously above Sonic Team in making decisions, but at the end of the day, it's Iizuka's team who's actually assembling these games. He should step up more often, not just let the team working overseas and "- oh boy, they made another crappy game while I wasn't looking, oops!'

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Iizuka has had a high level role on most of the 3D Sonic games, serving as a producer on all of the new ones. You are allowed to say he's bad at his job in the general sense. I still think it's an oversimplification of the situation that overlooks a lot of things(every single Sonic game, even the good ones, has some horror story about upper management attached somewhere.) but his name is on all the games and he's the one always justifying their decisions in the media with PR jargon so it's at least a fair reading of the situation for the average person. I'd argue that a lot of you should know better if you talk about this series every day, but whatever. It's fair game. I rarely feel like stepping in when that conversation is happening.

The stuff that makes me lose my mind is the fanfiction, like this lovely piece on the last page that's still getting humored. 

 

On 5/8/2020 at 6:43 AM, Roger_van_der_weide said:

I think Iizuka mentioned in an interview he has no idea what to do with a Mania 2.
Wait, let me check...
"Speaking to Famitsu magazine Sonic Series Producer Takashi Iizuka stated that SEGA had effectively done "everything" it could with Sonic Mania."

There's the exact words. So he ran out of ideas with Mania.
Which baffles me. Just let the Mania development team worry about the specific content of a Mania 2, I bet they have tons of level ideas.


Now, this is totally my speculation, but he comes across to me as someone who can only look at Mania as a Sonic Generations 2 kind of deal, the whole idea that you could make another Classic style game that's entirely new experience seems alien to them.
At least that's how his "we've done everything we could do" comes across. "Hey, we did Green hill and chemcial plant zone, What else is there?"

At the very least this fuels my suspicion that the concept of "Just make a damn Sonic game" is not a possible option in their mind.
There always has to be some kind of grand gimicky crazy angle and theme to each game that's the true focus and identity of each game, with the Sonic gameplay just awkwardly plastered on as an afterthought.
Hence why only when their wacky sceme of the week just HAPPENS to involve something Sonic esque, like Boost or Nostalgia, we get something resembling a proper Sonic game, but whenever their zany sceme of the week is something weird and alien, the entire game is going to be another Frankenstein monster of conflicting bodyparts.


But that's just my interpretation.
If anything, I really wish someone interviewed him more indepth about his thoughts on Mania. I'd love to see his opinion on why Sonic 4 got lukewarm reception where Mania exploded. I have severe doubts he understands what Mania is other then nostalgia parade #72.

All spun from what's proven to be a lazy translation at best. This type of conversation has run rampant in the fandom over the more concrete problem of sega jerking creatives around rushing every game out for profit regardless of it's creative angle, but I guess it can't be helped.

Once Iizuka finally goes his own way or retires and the last of the old guard that actually cares about the character is gone, the difference will be obvious, and it won't be for the better. 

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Honestly, i really don't know how to approach the Iizuka situation.

It is absolutely clear that he many times receives unfair hatred from people who want to start bandwagons, going as far as taking quotes of him out of context etc.

But at the same time, I'm really not sure if he's still the right man for the job, he obviously still cares about sonic, but with him getting more and more older makes me feel as if he no longer wants to push sonic to new heights and rather prefers to play it safe and sticking to what has proven to kinda work, like retaking old stage and putting them in new games for nostalgia's sake.

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6 hours ago, Wraith said:

Once Iizuka finally goes his own way or retires and the last of the old guard that actually cares about the character is gone, the difference will be obvious, and it won't be for the better. 

Please, do remind me when that happens. You really think we're gonna get even worse Sonic games after Iizuka leaves? Okay. You know. He "might" be the only person at ST that "actually cares" for Sonic like you said, but he's not the only in the planet. I believe you're familiar with Streets of Rage 4, right? A SEGA franchise that remained dormant for decades and just got a kickass sequel made by people who are not SEGA. They're people who care and understand Streets of Rage. And I can guarantee to you, the same kind of people exists for Sonic too. We know of a few.

 

Also, you know that a producer is the guy that oversees a lot of stuff, right? He's the person who approves scripts, scenes, gameplay, direction... If he was a producer in Forces, he allowed all that garbage. I'm sorry, but it's what happened. You know what he was in Gens? Head supervisor only. A supervisor has much less decision power than a producer.

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29 minutes ago, Jango said:

Please, do remind me when that happens. You really think we're gonna get even worse Sonic games after Iizuka leaves? Okay. You know. He "might" be the only person at ST that "actually cares" for Sonic like you said, but he's not the only in the planet. I believe you're familiar with Streets of Rage 4, right? A SEGA franchise that remained dormant for decades and just got a kickass sequel made by people who are not SEGA. They're people who care and understand Streets of Rage. And I can guarantee to you, the same kind of people exists for Sonic too. We know of a few.

 

Also, you know that a producer is the guy that oversees a lot of stuff, right? He's the person who approves scripts, scenes, gameplay, direction... If he was a producer in Forces, he allowed all that garbage. I'm sorry, but it's what happened. You know what he was in Gens? Head supervisor only. A supervisor has much less decision power than a producer.

The problem apparent,  aside from you constantly going off of faulty intel, is that you seem to run on the mentality that anything bad is Iizuka's fault and things would supposedly get better without.

Yet anything good he accomplishes, you then shift the goal posts by claiming that just anyone could've done the good he's done. It comes off like you just look for the wrong scapegoat or just have a misguided hate boner for the guy.

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People are frustrated by how the series has been handled and will just look for the easiest target to take shots at. It's a sad thing, but it is what it is.

Once people decided that Iizuka was the devil that's holding the series back, it's kind of hard to change that perception, especially when the quality of the games haven't improved much, which just validates that feeling further.

 

So basically, ANYTHING Iizuka does will be downplayed or spun into a negative light. People SHOULD know better, but it is what it is. People won't really start appreciating him until he's gone.

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25 minutes ago, Nina Cortex Jovahexeon said:

you seem to run on the mentality that anything bad is Iizuka's fault and things would supposedly get better without.

Yet anything good he accomplishes, you then shift the goal posts by claiming that just anyone could've done the good he's done. It comes off like you just look for the wrong scapegoat or just have a misguided hate boner for the guy.

No. You're the one trying write that narrative. It's not that anything good he accomplishes is dismissed by me on purpose. It's the simple fact that yes, many of the bad decisions or lack of one (direction, approval) are inherent to him, given his position in the studio. Could be an unhappy coincidence? I doubt. Like I said, he lacks a strong hand. "Well, he lives in Los Angeles, he can't be blamed for something that was decided at Sonic Team in Japan". Bullshit. It's his fault if he's absent too.

16 minutes ago, Kuzu said:

 will just look for the easiest target to take shots at. It's a sad thing, but it is what it is.

Some people probably do that, not me. How about Morio Kishimoto? He directed Sonic Forces. Can you say that game was well directed? Iizuka gets the hit because he's the guy who's supposed to approve the stuff these guys are creating. If shitty stuff comes out, it was because he saw and said: "that's fine, go ahead".

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50 minutes ago, Jango said:

 

Some people probably do that, not me. How about Morio Kishimoto? He directed Sonic Forces. Can you say that game was well directed? Iizuka gets the hit because he's the guy who's supposed to approve the stuff these guys are creating. If shitty stuff comes out, it was because he saw and said: "that's fine, go ahead".

Making video games is a TEAM effort, so there's always going to be more than one person responsible for any given game. A director is only as good as the team that he's working with.

So pining a majority of the blame on one sole person as if they made entire games by themselves, shows an extreme level of misunderstanding at how game development works and feels more like you're looking for a reason to justify your dissatisfaction with the series.

There's a difference between genuine critique and just wanting to vent your anger at the easiest target.

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1 hour ago, Jango said:

anything good he accomplishes is dismissed by me on purpose.

You literally did that last page. 

 

1 hour ago, Jango said:

It's the simple fact that yes, many of the bad decisions or lack of one (direction, approval) are inherent to him, given his position in the studio.

That's again, where you're mistaken. It's like how years ago, you blamed him for Sonic Forces despite him really not being that involved in that project and overlooked the fact that he was more involved with Sonic Mania. 

1 hour ago, Jango said:

"Well, he lives in Los Angeles, he can't be blamed for something that was decided at Sonic Team in Japan". Bullshit. It's his fault if he's absent too.

As has been told, much is literally out if his control, and actually decided by the higher ups at SEGA who have kind of been running the show with mainline Sonic titles. 

You can't blame him for "being absent" when he's where he was stationed. He doesn't have the kind of pull you'd like to assume he does.

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I'll suggest you two things, man: don't reply to just a piece of my argument instead of the whole sentence and line of thinking (which is something you've been acused before in this forum). You do that to turn people's words against them, everytime.

 

15 minutes ago, Nina Cortex Jovahexeon said:

him literally not being involved in that project and overlooked the fact that he was more involved with Sonic Mania. 

And second, do a little research about which position means and is responsible for in a project before quoting me again. He might not been AS involved in Forces as he was in Mania (which I would argue, because in Mania he was a supervisor and in Forces a producer), but he has the power to approve or not what the team in Japan was creating. And, AS IF Christian, Pagoda West Games and the rest of that team needed ANY input from Iizuka. They have more knowledge of Sonic in a nail than Iizuka has in his whole body.

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7 minutes ago, Jango said:

And second, do a little research

Already edited that part before you reply, so this remark is outdated and uncalled for.

7 minutes ago, Jango said:

don't reply a piece of my argument instead of the whole sentence and line of thinking

I usually just trim out the fat that doesn't really matter with bits like:

7 minutes ago, Jango said:

And, AS IF Christian, Pagoda West Games and the rest of that team need ANY input from Iizuka. They have more knowledge of Sonic in a nail than Iizuka has in his whole body.

Which really isn't necessary anyway.

7 minutes ago, Jango said:

He might not been AS involved in Forces as he was in Mania (which I would argue, because in Mania he was a supervisor and in Forces a producer), but he has the power to approve or not what the team in Japan was creating. And, AS IF Christian, Pagoda West Games and the rest of that team need ANY input from Iizuka. They have more knowledge of Sonic in a nail than Iizuka has in his whole body.

So, if that's your argument,  then it amounts to semantics that don't really prove your point.

Factoid of life is, he doesn't have that power you think he does to approve or veto a game made by the mainline branch. He is the head of Sonic Team yes, but he's only the runner of SEGA of America.

As has been stated before, Sonic Forces' approval was all decided by SEGA of Japan. At most, Iizuka has a contributional role for Forces.

Whereas Mania actually was a game that he played more of an active role in the approval department. 

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2 hours ago, Jango said:

Please, do remind me when that happens. You really think we're gonna get even worse Sonic games after Iizuka leaves? Okay. You know. He "might" be the only person at ST that "actually cares" for Sonic like you said, but he's not the only in the planet. I believe you're familiar with Streets of Rage 4, right? A SEGA franchise that remained dormant for decades and just got a kickass sequel made by people who are not SEGA. They're people who care and understand Streets of Rage. And I can guarantee to you, the same kind of people exists for Sonic too. We know of a few.

I didn't say that good Sonic games would never happen again after his departure, but it should be pretty obvious that leaving the brand completely to the mercy of the people that have consistently thrown a wrench into things over and over again is a bad idea. 

Compare the good stories about Iizuka that the Mania team had to share both publicly and behind the scenes to the jabs they were throwing SEGA's way before the game was even out. Do you think "passion" will keep the new guard taking SEGA's shit forever? It didn't work for Naka or Hashimoto. It didn't work for sega's formal stable of animators and composers. 

What will happen when current Sonic fan favorite Taxman decides that he's had enough and won't stick around? Or, god forbid, he starts pushing out poor products due to circumstances outside of his control. That's already happened once, with the Sonic mobile ports being cut into ribbons to become freemium with ads because SEGA decided that would make them more money. It happened before with Sonic team proper with the quality drop from 2000-2006 being so severe that it almost tanked the series.

Just going "i unno i guess sonic team jus cant make a good game" is not only a pointless conversation to keep having when Sonic Team's turnover rate is so high, but it's also ignoring what the biggest problem with the series actually is. 

Quote

Also, you know that a producer is the guy that oversees a lot of stuff, right? He's the person who approves scripts, scenes, gameplay, direction... If he was a producer in Forces, he allowed all that garbage. I'm sorry, but it's what happened. You know what he was in Gens? Head supervisor only. A supervisor has much less decision power than a producer.

A quick google search reveals he was credited as a producer on both games, same as any other modern Sonic game. Another black mark against you guys spending abnormal amounts of time making up stories about him. Perhaps the fact that these games can vary so heavily in quality despite Iizuka having the same role on all of them suggests that there's more going on behind the scenes? Would you rather push him out so you can move onto the next talking head, or seek a more permanent solution?

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1 hour ago, Wraith said:

A quick google search reveals he was credited as a producer on both games, same as any other modern Sonic game. Another black mark against you guys spending abnormal amounts of time making up stories about him. Perhaps the fact that these games can vary so heavily in quality despite Iizuka having the same role on all of them suggests that there's more going on behind the scenes? Would you rather push him out so you can move onto the next talking head, or seek a more permanent solution?

That's something none of us can say for certain, yet both sides are trying to push their version as true, more often than not that blaming him is wrong and these people are wrong. That's not a counter argument, that's an opinion, because like you said, there could be more stuff behind the scenes that we may never know, for both sides. Mindless blaming is one thing, and I don't do that anymore. I was trying to have a discussion taking as a base the fact that his part in the studio should be more effective, because that's what usually the job he has demands... Nothing more. If he closed his eyes to bad stuff or not, are all assumptions at the end of day. We only know about the good stuff like greenliting Mania and Death Egg Robo in GHZ because Christian told us. That's why I feel like these discussions never end.

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3 minutes ago, Jango said:

That's something none of us can say for certain, yet both sides are trying to push their version as true, more often than not that blaming him is wrong and these people are wrong. That's not a counter argument, that's an opinion, because like you said, there could be more stuff behind the scenes that we may never know, for both sides. Mindless blaming is one thing, and I don't do that anymore. I was trying to have a discussion taking as a base the fact that his part in the studio should be more effective, because that's what usually the job he has demands... Nothing more. If he closed his eyes to bad stuff or not, are all assumptions at the end of day. That's why I feel like these discussions never end.

It's fair to have a problem with being overly defensive of him. I highlighted this in my first post but I'll stress again that, yes, he's always the guy in the press and his name is on all of the games. 

I'm just confused as to why so much discussion boils down to him at all with all that goes into these games and what our knowledge of the circumstances is. I'm gonna do my part by not chiming in on this discussion anymore, but I hope going forward that we chill with the narratives.

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I wouldn't say "because it's the easiest". But at the same time, it might be, because indeed, he's the guy that talks to the press. Saying he's the only "consistent voice" at Sonic Team is much of an assumption as saying that he should take more responsibility for dropping the bar in quality since he's the head of the studio, which is why I also don't understand when people try to completely deny each others visions with such authority, you know? No one here owns the truth. In the end, his name (and of many other people) will be there during the good and the bad. I said that his decision of greenliting Mania was an easy one because it really was. It was exactly what people have been asking for years. And remember, we only know about this information because they told us. What if someone come out and say that every thing that let fans angry was his idea too? We do know for example that keep pushing the wisps, despite the fans saying they don't wanna see them in every game, was his idea/guidance. Same as the two dimensions thing. 

I'll go out of this discussion aswell. Might follow @Strickerx5 advice and wait for an actual game reveal.

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2 hours ago, Jango said:

What if someone come out and say that every thing that let fans angry was his idea too? We do know for example that keep pushing the wisps, despite the fans saying they don't wanna see them in every game, was his idea/guidance. Same as the two dimensions thing. 

Correct me if I'm wrong, but wasn't also theorized that bringing Zavok back and telling the mania team to have more classic stages than original ones were all his ideas too ?

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8 hours ago, Jango said:

Please, do remind me when that happens. You really think we're gonna get even worse Sonic games after Iizuka leaves? Okay. You know. He "might" be the only person at ST that "actually cares" for Sonic like you said, but he's not the only in the planet. I believe you're familiar with Streets of Rage 4, right? A SEGA franchise that remained dormant for decades and just got a kickass sequel made by people who are not SEGA. They're people who care and understand Streets of Rage. And I can guarantee to you, the same kind of people exists for Sonic too. We know of a few.

How many of those people work at Sega right now and would be allowed to oversee a Sonic game that Sega throws tens of millions of dollars at? Nakamura?

Because that's what Iizuka is. That's what Naka was before he decided he had had enough of the bullshit that was going on at the company in the middle of the last decade. Before Naka chased him away to Sony, that's what Yasuhara was, toiling away in the charred remains of S.T.I. trying to keep some semblance of quality control in the series on the Saturn while Naka was in Japan isolating himself with the SoJ big wigs. All do respect to to the highly talented and passionate Christian Whitehead and the Streets of Rage 4 team, but they are not and never will be old guard Sega employees with enough clout to tell Sega (and Sega of Japan in particular) what they don't want to hear when they least want to hear it; to calm the fuck down and shut the fuck up. It isn't any secret, and hasn't been for decades now, that running interference from Sega's meddling is part of the job when you are overseeing Sonic games.

 

 

I say this as someone who never was thrilled that Iizuka was handed the reigns of the series back a second time (mostly because I feel he's far too conservative more than any quality failings on the games he oversees): It could easily be far worse than it has been since 2010. Sega didn't have to bankroll Mania when they had developer ties already established to shit out Sonic 4 sequels until the end of time. Sega didn't have to give a shit about the remakes of Sonic 1, 2 and CD when they could have just dumped ROMs and an emulator on the iOS/Play store instead. Even those pointless M2 remakes of the first two games are more effort than anyone at Sega had to do. And I can easily imagine a Iizuka-less Sonic Team being fine with any of that just as easily as anyone can dismiss it as "well any idiot could have thought to have Whitehead make a new game."

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It genuinely frustrates me that this idea of Iizuka-san being an opposing force against the Mania team is still making the rounds. The man has made plenty of weird decisions and can seem verbally incoherent when obscure questions are pressed against him, but as Tornado stated, he's the last remaining OG Sonic Team staff member who has both the clout and the interest for the series. He's the reason Mania isn't just another collection of Mega Drive ports with a few original levels to tease our interest; he encouraged the team to go big and make it a competent sequel to Sonic 3 & Knuckles. 

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57 minutes ago, Tornado said:

All do respect to to the highly talented and passionate Christian Whitehead and the Streets of Rage 4 team, but they are not and never will be old guard Sega employees with enough clout to tell Sega (and Sega of Japan in particular) what they don't want to hear when they least want to hear it; to calm the fuck down and shut the fuck up. It isn't any secret, and hasn't been for decades now, that running interference from Sega's meddling is part of the job when you are overseeing Sonic games.

I always figured there was some stress behind the scenes, but are the Sega higher ups that big an intrusive pain in the ass?

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29 minutes ago, Indigo Rush said:

It genuinely frustrates me that this idea of Iizuka-san being an opposing force against the Mania team is still making the rounds. The man has made plenty of weird decisions and can seem verbally incoherent when obscure questions are pressed against him, but as Tornado stated, he's the last remaining OG Sonic Team staff member who has both the clout and the interest for the series. He's the reason Mania isn't just another collection of Mega Drive ports with a few original levels to tease our interest; he encouraged the team to go big and make it a competent sequel to Sonic 3 & Knuckles. 

I wonder though, when did the hate bandwagon for Iizuka started ? And why him out of all the people ? Is it because he is considered by many "the face of sonic team" which makes him an easy target to project upon ?

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