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History Repeats: A look at the changing demographics of Sonic the Hedgehog

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So I saw a thread on retro that pointed out something I've been noticing in recent years, but have you all noticed how more vocal fans who grew up in the 2000's who are likely turning into teenagers/young adults now, have become? You can see it all over Twitter.

This video being one the more notable examples that's gained a lot of traction since it was uploaded.

 

There's just been a large portion of the fanbase that's been proclaiming their love for the early 2000's era, and actively shun the games from the 2010's as "ruining" the series and how it needs to be "edgy" again. It struck a chord with me because this was, ironically, the same rhetoric being used by fans of the classic games when the series` reputation was tanking in the 2000's. Proclaiming the series to be "ruined" when more "shitty friends" showed up,  and when the stories became "convoluted messes" .

Obviously this is the result of the massive divide made in almost every decade of the series, birthing new fans who aren't necessarily there for what came before. And of course, that doesn't even begin to get into the massive amounts of alternate continuities. 

This series means many different things for people, and that can mostly be attributed to what you grew up with. That's the "REAL" Sonic to you, so it's kind of a shame how nobody can really compromise on what they want out of the series and just respect that we like and want different things. 

I grew up on Sonic Adventure 2, but I absolutely love Sonic 3 as a game, and I'm extremely fond of Generations. I'm not too focused on plot and characterization as I was when I was younger, but I can appreciate when those things are done right. And I absolutely don't think there's anything wrong with a simpler, more cohesive direction.

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Yeah, tittle is misleading.

And all I can say is that I'm part of the "Adventure" fans that want so-called "edge", but I'm not blind to numerous problems those games had. I don't want "Sonic Adventure 3" since both SA1 and SA2 had bad ideas that just need to be dropped. But it also had positive qualities that need to be preserved.

If you just check "Sonic Dissected" or "Sonic Spitball" or just listen on this forum you'll see not blind hatred to "modern silly Sonic" but constructive criticism and hope that we'll be acknowledged for a change. Modern fans get modern games, Classic fans get 4, Generation and finally Mania and what do we get? Sonic Forced that allows watered down "edge",  but squeezed between Avatar, Classic Sonic and boost gameplay.

(And just to be clear "edge" is bad word, but is shorter that saying "complex plot, respect for characters, sense of adventure, real stakes and overall caring for the story.... as well as touching more serious topic")

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The title is kind of intentionally clickbait I'll admit, might change it soon.

9 minutes ago, MetalSkulkBane said:

Yeah, tittle is misleading.

And all I can say is that I'm part of the "Adventure" fans that want so-called "edge", but I'm not blind to numerous problems those games had. I don't want "Sonic Adventure 3" since both SA1 and SA2 had bad ideas that just need to be dropped. But it also had positive qualities that need to be preserved.

If you just check "Sonic Dissected" or "Sonic Spitball" or just listen on this forum you'll see not blind hatred to "modern silly Sonic" but constructive criticism and hope that we'll be acknowledged for a change. Modern fans get modern games, Classic fans get 4, Generation and finally Mania and what do we get? Sonic Forced that allows watered down "edge",  but squeezed between Avatar, Classic Sonic and boost gameplay.

(And just to be clear "edge" is bad word, but is shorter that saying "complex plot, respect for characters, sense of adventure, real stakes and overall caring for the story.... as well as touching more serious topic")

I feel like SOME criticism is constructive, but even the constructive stuff is kinda mired in some bitterness that shows in the critique.

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1 hour ago, Kuzu said:

So I saw a thread on retro that pointed out something I've been noticing in recent years, but have you all noticed how more vocal fans who grew up in the 2000's who are likely turning into teenagers/young adults now, have become? You can see it all over Twitter.

This video being one the more notable examples that's gained a lot of traction since it was uploaded.

 

There's just been a large portion of the fanbase that's been proclaiming their love for the early 2000's era, and actively shun the games from the 2010's as "ruining" the series and how it needs to be "edgy" again. It struck a chord with me because this was, ironically, the same rhetoric being used by fans of the classic games when the series` reputation was tanking in the 2000's. Proclaiming the series to be "ruined" when more "shitty friends" showed up,  and when the stories became "convoluted messes" .

Obviously this is the result of the massive divide made in almost every decade of the series, birthing new fans who aren't necessarily there for what came before. And of course, that doesn't even begin to get into the massive amounts of alternate continuities. 

This series means many different things for people, and that can mostly be attributed to what you grew up with. That's the "REAL" Sonic to you, so it's kind of a shame how nobody can really compromise on what they want out of the series and just respect that we like and want different things. 

I grew up on Sonic Adventure 2, but I absolutely love Sonic 3 as a game, and I'm extremely fond of Generations. I'm not too focused on plot and characterization as I was when I was younger, but I can appreciate when those things are done right. And I absolutely don't think there's anything wrong with a simpler, more cohesive direction.

So there are certainly people who are bit too vitriolic about their version of sonic. I think the issue with what you are proposing and what you are talking about is why we are here isn't a simple change in direction. Classic to Adventure was a " change in direction " its an active shunning of an entire section of the franchise by the people who made it because a bunch of adults at the time decided that edge was bad. This isn't just a change it was entire several years where the franchise was literally self deprecating not to woo new children but to appeal to those adults. To be less " embarrassing " , this wasn't an artistic choice. A bunch of fans were thrown under a bus because they wanted to appeal to different people. And fans having gripes about that I think , if they aren't being jerks about it , are valid.

What makes this worse is that the video you are quoting goes into complete downgrades and degradation of quality issues that exist in this " simpler " direction that didn't exist with the 2d 3d switch up. The change in direction is also isn't because of purely artistic change, its because sega doesn't want to spend as much money and time making these games.

Its the combination of these two things is why we are here. And why you criticism sort of falls flat. If this was a situation where the situation was fine, and they just changed course because we are just doing new things. Sure whatever, but its not. They are here because they threw a bunch of people under a bus and then made of the shit that they liked for over a decade. The change from 2d to 3d and the change from adventure to modern isn't under the same context and to try and attribute that seems disingenuous at best.

But you know what the worst part of it is and the thing that shuts down your entire argument. Is that younger fans ARE there for what came before, sonic team and sega were literally surprised that kids liked classic sonic. And the sonic games that are making bank are the mobile games with a bunch of characters most of whom who's modern depictions are from the adventure era. The console games have been selling less and less even the good ones, and while yes quality fluctuation is a thing. I also think its because those games are made to be extremely safe as to be uninteresting, in a world where children's entertainment is becoming less and less safe in many regards. The thing they wanted to do failed.

If people are genuinely being jerk bags on the internet to newer fans. That sucks and I have seen people do that with movie sonic and that sucks. That sonic is someone's first sonic and they get to internalize that however right?

But if they want to criticize , like what that video is actually doing contrary to your kinda click bait threat title, what they see as a gradual downward spiral of quality and see a change of direction as the impetus for that, that's valid.  Particularly in this situation

Quote

And I absolutely don't think there's anything wrong with a simpler, more cohesive direction.

And i want to end on this , the direction hasn't been cohesive, heck it hasn't even been simple. Its been a bumbling mess with no thesis. The entire theme of this era of sonic is " people thought 06 was embarrassing , run from anything related to that " and what has resulted in games with varying levels of quality selling less and less because the people in charge in their running away forgot about anything people liked about this franchise.  And I think calling that out is valid. This direction was never made for new kids , it was made for jaded adults who didn't want to be embarrassed and tried to appeal to children and didn't work for either group.

 

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39 minutes ago, Kuzu said:

I feel like SOME criticism is constructive, but even the constructive stuff is kinda mired in some bitterness that shows in the critique.

Well, every fandom (heck, group with certain view) has good and bad apples. You can't pick people who share your belief, you can only try to make your own arguments fair and logical.

Am I bitter? (looks into a mirror for long time)

...maybe a bit. Which long-time Sonic fan isn't? All I can say that I try. There is "Sine ira et studio" above my avatar for a reason.

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When the series started selling lesser products with less content under the guise of "simplicity, coherency, consistency" etc. Then some bitterness is allowed. Dedicated fans lost every idea, concept, mechanic and artist that made the series unique because SEGA thought it would help their profit margins. Unacceptable, but largely treated as a good thing until recently when people started doing the math on how many modern Sonic games were worth anything once you got past clapping because of checkerboard patterns and Tails playing a prominent role. 

The only thing that's happening is people are realizing how much we lost. It helps to also realize that Sonic's loudest critics in the 2000s were people who were just taking the piss and never seriously cared about the series in the first place. Arin still thinks Sonic Mania is garbage, and that's fine, but then why pander to him and his audience? 

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4 minutes ago, Wraith said:

When the series started selling lesser products with less content under the guise of "simplicity, coherency, consistency" etc. Then some bitterness is allowed. Dedicated fans lost every idea, concept, mechanic and artist that made the series unique because SEGA thought it would help their profit margins. Unacceptable, but largely treated as a good thing until recently when people started doing the math on how many modern Sonic games were worth anything once you got past clapping because of checkerboard patterns and Tails playing a prominent role. 

The only thing that's happening is people are realizing how much we lost. 

I want to attack the bolded from a different angle. I'm not the youngest sonic fan in the world, but i'm pretty young and I was like a kid when 06 came out and I was still in schooling when colors generations and stuff came out. And while anecdotal , at least in my experience kids weren't specifically clapping because of all that stuff. We liked the characters and the action and stuff and ...it was gone , the games were fine and even good in the case of generations but things were missing and some of those games were largely unappealing.

The people that were clapping were the adults, older, classic fans , game pundits that wanted to sonic " get back on track" , so you are right that they started doing the math at how many modern sonic were worth a damn. But its less about how much they lost, they didn't care about the loss, they didn't care at all. These were older " I grew up with 2d sonic " fans. The things that adventure era kids growing into adults lost were irrelevant , heck they made of them. They just realized they were never that into 3d sonic in the first place, and so due to those people tuning out and younger fans focusing on mobile and tuning out. The games sold less and less. Mania comes out does very well, those people proclaim its the best sonic game since the classic era. And actively stop even discussing the future of sonic outside of mania 2. Because they wanted one thing, and that was the game like the one when they were kids.

So I think its less them realizing what's lost , and more so fans who understood it at the time, growing up and able to communicate it en masse. And older fans realizing...the never actually ever given a shit about the 3d part of the franchise and never thought a return to 2d was ever a realistic option.

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28 minutes ago, Shadowlax said:

So there are certainly people who are bit too vitriolic about their version of sonic. I think the issue with what you are proposing and what you are talking about is why we are here isn't a simple change in direction. Classic to Adventure was a " change in direction " its an active shunning of an entire section of the franchise by the people who made it because a bunch of adults at the time decided that edge was bad. This isn't just a change it was entire several years where the franchise was literally self deprecating not to woo new children but to appeal to those adults. To be less " embarrassing " , this wasn't an artistic choice. A bunch of fans were thrown under a bus because they wanted to appeal to different people. And fans having gripes about that I think , if they aren't being jerks about it , are valid.

What makes this worse is that the video you are quoting goes into complete downgrades and degradation of quality issues that exist in this " simpler " direction that didn't exist with the 2d 3d switch up. The change in direction is also isn't because of purely artistic change, its because sega doesn't want to spend as much money and time making these games.

Its the combination of these two things is why we are here. And why you criticism sort of falls flat. If this was a situation where the situation was fine, and they just changed course because we are just doing new things. Sure whatever, but its not. They are here because they threw a bunch of people under a bus and then made of the shit that they liked for over a decade. The change from 2d to 3d and the change from adventure to modern isn't under the same context and to try and attribute that seems disingenuous at best.

But you know what the worst part of it is and the thing that shuts down your entire argument. Is that younger fans ARE there for what came before, sonic team and sega were literally surprised that kids liked classic sonic. And the sonic games that are making bank are the mobile games with a bunch of characters most of whom who's modern depictions are from the adventure era. The console games have been selling less and less even the good ones, and while yes quality fluctuation is a thing. I also think its because those games are made to be extremely safe as to be uninteresting, in a world where children's entertainment is becoming less and less safe in many regards. The thing they wanted to do failed.

If people are genuinely being jerk bags on the internet to newer fans. That sucks and I have seen people do that with movie sonic and that sucks. That sonic is someone's first sonic and they get to internalize that however right?

But if they want to criticize , like what that video is actually doing contrary to your kinda click bait threat title, what they see as a gradual downward spiral of quality and see a change of direction as the impetus for that, that's valid.  Particularly in this situation

And i want to end on this , the direction hasn't been cohesive, heck it hasn't even been simple. Its been a bumbling mess with no thesis. The entire theme of this era of sonic is " people thought 06 was embarrassing , run from anything related to that " and what has resulted in games with varying levels of quality selling less and less because the people in charge in their running away forgot about anything people liked about this franchise.  And I think calling that out is valid. This direction was never made for new kids , it was made for jaded adults who didn't want to be embarrassed and tried to appeal to children and didn't work for either group.

 

I want to preface this by saying that the topic title is not meant to downplay the criticisms people have of the direction of the series for the past ten years, those are valid and people are within their right to criticize it. What I'm pointing out is that this attitude that the series has moved away from what people liked about it, is almost the same exact attitude people had towards the era that you are defending. 

As someone who has read a lot of articles from older fans in the 2000 era, going from "2d to 3d" wasn't as simple of a change as you are making it out to be. We're literally talking about going into an entirely separate dimensional plane, and that drastically altered how Sonic controlled; and that is not even getting into the artistic and plot changes that occurred at the time too. The new designs that debuted in 1998 were absolutely contentious with their anime-stylization, but that was popular at the time so Sega cashing in on that, just like how you accused them of cashing in on the trends of recent years. 

This is particularly noticeable with Sonic Adventure 2: Battle, literally the first game in the entire series to go multiplatform and the first one on a Nintendo console. Literally an entirely new generation of fans had this as their first Sonic game, and it colored their impressions of what the series was.

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You reap what you sow. Every game, cartoon, comic, and now movie is somebody's first exposure to the series and it's gone off in such different directions that it can't even nearly please everyone at once. It sucks, and obviously it doesn't justify the worst actions/attitudes among fans, but this was just about inevitable with the way the series was handled and there's no easy solution to it. Best they can do is find something that works to stabilize the series around for a while and try to build a more stable identity and fanbase even if that means some fans drift away.

Obviously, though, they should choose to do All Of The Things That I Want, instead of the things other people want.

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29 minutes ago, Kuzu said:

I want to preface this by saying that the topic title is not meant to downplay the criticisms people have of the direction of the series for the past ten years, those are valid and people are within their right to criticize it. What I'm pointing out is that this attitude that the series has moved away from what people liked about it, is almost the same exact attitude people had towards the era that you are defending. 

As someone who has read a lot of articles from older fans in the 2000 era, going from "2d to 3d" wasn't as simple of a change as you are making it out to be. We're literally talking about going into an entirely separate dimensional plane, and that drastically altered how Sonic controlled; and that is not even getting into the artistic and plot changes that occurred at the time too. The new designs that debuted in 1998 were absolutely contentious with their anime-stylization, but that was popular at the time so Sega cashing in on that, just like how you accused them of cashing in on the trends of recent years. 

This is particularly noticeable with Sonic Adventure 2: Battle, literally the first game in the entire series to go multiplatform and the first one on a Nintendo console. Literally an entirely new generation of fans had this as their first Sonic game, and it colored their impressions of what the series was.

I'm not trying to invalidate those peoples criticisms. My issue is, for sega the transition to 2d to 3d was not simple, making video games ain't simple. But the reasoning was seeing what sonic can be. It was a wild time of crazy exploration and experimentation. If the modern era was built on that, not only would I be more on your side, I might be more content with the modern era. I may not like it, but I would appreciate it for what it is. Its why for all its faults I think sonic boom is the most interesting thing to come out of the modern era. Its weird as hell and trying its best and I appreciate it for that.

I don't think the rest of the modern era is built on that though and that's why I don't think the attitude is the same. I don't think the line of criticism and what its based on is the same. The modern era is built on not being the adventure era, that era was embarrassing , so we can't be that. A lot of the critcism isn't just based around things being different. Its based around the games , the narratives around them being more repetitive and worse. Its based around people seeing a larger issue than " shits different " shit has no direction and is driving off of a cliff. It also has a particular tinge to it that the classic criticisms does not have, which is. A lot of the younger people making these criticism, have had essentially the game company chime in on thinking the games they like and possibly they themselves are embarassing. Whilst this supposed new and betterer direction continues to get worse. There are different contexts around these changes in direction and the criticism just isn't the same.

Just a short example of what i'm talking about.

Iizuka says that the adventure formula isn't the future of sonic. He then releases sonic forces a game that not only tries to ape the adventure era poorly is just a crappy amalgamation of various sonic things. Along with mania a good game. That's the theme of modern sonic , sega and sonic team deep in the thought process of " adventure bad " then tries to do thier own thing, fucks up doesn't have any faith in it and tries to half ass incorporate old shit in into make it better and its still fucked.

That didn't happen with classic sonic, it was just a thing that wasn't being done, and that was that. There is a context around all this that didn't exist back in the classic era. Company almost outright saying the thing you liked is bad, while fucking up worse while trying to appeal to a group of people that never really gave a shit about the thing in the first place. It isn't just gameplay or story ( or lack their of) that is being criticized. There is a brand, a thought process that is being criticized.

11 minutes ago, Diogenes said:

You reap what you sow. Every game, cartoon, comic, and now movie is somebody's first exposure to the series and it's gone off in such different directions that it can't even nearly please everyone at once. It sucks, and obviously it doesn't justify the worst actions/attitudes among fans, but this was just about inevitable with the way the series was handled and there's no easy solution to it. Best they can do is find something that works to stabilize the series around for a while and try to build a more stable identity and fanbase even if that means some fans drift away.

Obviously, though, they should choose to do All Of The Things That I Want, instead of the things other people want.

Here's the thing, this is a solvable problem.

Just make different games. This is a solvable problem

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I am from the SA2 generation so my post is from that view point, although this is probably obvious from my choice in username and other posts.

The first thing I want to say is as a kid there wasn't this Classic and Modern divide. Or rather, while some online may have thought so, to me the Classic era was still Sonic. Sega knew this as well as GameCube fans had not only SADX and SA2B, but also Sonic Mega Collection (the main titles) and Sonic Gems Collection (the less known titles). For me I always liked the Classic era's design, but I simply sucked too hard at the game play. Having to start over from Green Hill every time I failed was like if you had died in Final Rush and started over again at City Escape. I understand it was the design at the time, but it was only when I was older I learned about things like stage select. I loved playing Sonic R and Sonic the Fighters despite how short they were as the different game play was easier for me to get a grasp on. I'm not really proud of it, just trying to give my viewpoint as a kid who sucked at Classic Sonic games and loved Adventure because it was a game I learned to master similar to fans of the Classic era did with their games.

I watched the Sonic X english dub, but around the time of the seventh video game generation (Wii era), I found myself distancing a bit. As cool as I thought the new games looked, I only had a Wii and DS at the time so unlike before where many of Sonic's games were multi platform, a lot of games from this time I couldn't play because I didn't own the systems they were on. I did play the Wii games but wasn't really a fan of them. I found Unleashed okay, but lacking what I loved about the Adventure era. I only found out years later that the Wii had an inferior version of Unleashed.

During the Wii U era I split from Sonic almost completely. I played Generations but wasn't super into it as the story and characters were lacking. Classic Sonic looked different from the one I had learned about from his legacy titles. I was one of the few who owned a Wii U, but Lost World felt like a slap in the face. I like Mario, but I don't want Sonic to be like Mario, I want Sonic to be like Sonic. It felt like Sega completely misunderstood what got my generation into Sonic. And this was before I learned Lost World still had the 2D segments in it. Lost World was the first main Sonic title on a console I owned I completely skipped after the demo. I didn't get any of the Boom titles either.

Then came Mania and Forces. I was happy to see Classic fans get what they wanted, but I couldn't help but feel like it was only halfway there. Even before I learned about the Japanese lore, it just felt like Sega mandated they rehash things again, but this time it was okay because it was Classic Sonic. Forces I was very excited about from the teaser, but the actual game once again I felt mixed on. It had the premise, but the writing wasn't fully there. I felt the same about Infinite. I also found myself noticing how short the levels were, easily half of Sonic Adventure's Sonic stages. Some are so short the full song can't play. It felt like they were getting closer, but still didn't understand what made things work. I tend to value unrealized potential (that may be too positive for some) over perfectly made playing it safe titles, so despite my frustration at the game I still enjoyed some of the concepts.

Anyways recently I found out about the Japanese and English lore split, and boy did that ever get me excited. All this time of being told seemingly conflicted "Sonic is just for kids!" and "Sonic is too edgy!", and now I realized why the fandom was so divided. I had seen the AoSTH and some of SatAM, but even as a kid I knew it was it's own thing. What I didn't know is about the game story changes for Classic and beyond. It made me happy seeing how interesting the Japanese Classic lore was and how Adventure wasn't as radical a change in story as I had always been told it was. This still seems to be unknown outside of hardcore Sonic fan communities though.

I don't think Colors era in itself is bad, just that it represents a different kind of change than previously as others have said. Adventure felt like Sonic Team was trying to build up to something grand, even if it failed at it. Colors Era feels the opposite, where they just make it for the sake of it and pandering to the past.

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Just now, Diogenes said:

This is a meaningless answer to a complex problem.

No its not.

Mania is literally just that.

Just make different games. Why have they arbitrary decided older types of sonic games can't be made again. I just don't mean adventure I mean like different stuff. They can't do more of everything, but if they were to actually commit the money and time to make different types of sonic games for different audiences , it would solve a lot. There used to be whole 2d spin of side games that just don't exist no more. I hate sonic heroes with a passion but there is an unbelievable amount of love for that game, why have they never made another game like that and tried to improve upon its mechanics. Brands do this all the time, you can just make different products for different groups and its fine.

This problem ain't complex, companies have solved this for decades, just make different shit

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Just saying "make different games" doesn't say anything about what kind of games should be made, and it wouldn't do anything about the different factions of the fanbase being at each other's throats and pissed at Sega/Sonic Team whenever the things they don't like are getting the most focus. It's literally what caused the problem in the first place.

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5 minutes ago, Shadowlax said:

I'm not trying to invalidate those peoples criticisms. My issue is, for sega the transition to 2d to 3d was not simple, making video games ain't simple. But the reasoning was seeing what sonic can be. It was a wild time of crazy exploration and experimentation. If the modern era was built on that, not only would I be more on your side, I might be more content with the modern era. I may not like it, but I would appreciate it for what it is. Its why for all its faults I think sonic boom is the most interesting thing to come out of the modern era. Its weird as hell and trying its best and I appreciate it for that.

I don't think the rest of the modern era is built on that though and that's why I don't think the attitude is the same. I don't think the line of criticism and what its based on is the same. The modern era is built on not being the adventure era, that era was embarrassing , so we can't be that. A lot of the critcism isn't just based around things being different. Its based around the games , the narratives around them being more repetitive and worse. Its based around people seeing a larger issue than " shits different " shit has no direction and is driving off of a cliff. It also has a particular tinge to it that the classic criticisms does not have, which is. A lot of the younger people making these criticism, have had essentially the game company chime in on thinking the games they like and possibly they themselves are embarassing. Whilst this supposed new and betterer direction continues to get worse. There are different contexts around these changes in direction and the criticism just isn't the same.

Just a short example of what i'm talking about.

Iizuka says that the adventure formula isn't the future of sonic. He then releases sonic forces a game that not only tries to ape the adventure era poorly is just a crappy amalgamation of various sonic things. Along with mania a good game. That's the theme of modern sonic , sega and sonic team implicit in the thought process of " adventure bad " then tries to do thier own thing, fucks up doesn't have any faith in it and tries to half ass incorporate old shit in into make it better and its still fucked.

That didn't happen with classic sonic, it was just a thing that wasn't being done, and that was that. There is a context around all this that didn't exist back in the classic era. Company almost outright saying the thing you liked is bad, while fucking up worse while trying to appeal to a group of people that never really gave a shit about the thing in the first place. It isn't just gameplay or story ( or lack their of) that is being criticized. There is a brand, a thought process that is being criticized.

This is my main point of contention, because I feel like you don't really understand just how divided the fanbase was about 15 years ago around when 06 came out. I say that because you keep downplaying classic criticisms as if they had no weight at all, so I'm going to explain best just what I mean when how divided this series was back. Bear in mind this is literally going off from my own readings from other people who were our age back in that time, and doesn't necessarily reflect my own feelings. I barely had a presence on the internet  back then.

 

 

This is literally the debut of Shadow's game; this was when the series was starting to hit a rocky point after Sonic Heroes didn't perform as well as they had hoped and after a promise, from Sonic Team themselves, that they were going to get on track. It was 2005, and the series was featured in the Walk of Game, celebrating it's legacy at the time and what was going to come forward...and it fucking ends with Shadow literally shooting it in the face. You're going to tell me this wasn't disrespectful to the series` legacy at the time? How you feel about the last ten years is exactly how Classic fans felt after watching this trailer. 

This was part of my point in showing how history is repeating itself, because this same attitude that was so prominent back then is now rearing its head again, except this time, it's Adventure fans who are the "Boomers" who are complaining about how things aren't they're used to be. And sure, you can sugarcoat it however you want, and I'm not knocking you for doing so, because this was the era of Sonic you grew up in, and to see actively shunned is would strike a chord. But I am pointing out that this attitude is not new, or any more special than how classic fans felt during the 2000's, particularly after 2005. 

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That does seem to be a bit of a thing, doesn't it? Unless I've been living under a rock though (which is entirely possible; there's a lot of shit I'm not caught up on), it doesn't seem to be as widespread as the retro-bashing of the Dreamcast era and late-2000s games was when I was first getting into the series nearly thirteen years ago. If it's anything like that, it'll largely die down once there's some good games being released again; it'll still be a thing no matter what, but cooler heads always prevail and this type of stuff is no different. I became a fan during the "edgy" era and was taking in the stories of things like Shadow, 06, Secret Rings, X, etc. The first games I played, however, were the classics (thank you Mega Collection.) I prefer more grounded-type plots and think Adventure can work as a model for how the 3D games could be, but that never once played into my enjoyment of games like the classic titles, or stuff afterward like Colors and Generations. There's good and bad in every era of this franchise's history. Sometimes it gets in a rut (even the classic era isn't immune to this; 1995-97 was a pretty bleak time, 98 in most of the world too) and it's shown time and again that it can make a comeback.

Keeping a positive mindset can be hard sometimes but things find a way to work themselves out imo.

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9 minutes ago, Shadowlax said:

I hate sonic heroes with a passion but there is an unbelievable amount of love for that game, why have they never made another game like that and tried to improve upon its mechanics.

 

I know it's not in the way fans want, but I do think Team Sonic Racing took some Heroes influence. Sometimes I wonder if it would have gotten better reception if it wasn't being compared to Transformed. Not that I'm one to judge as I always wanted an improved version of Sonic R instead of Sonic in a car. I do think TSR really shines in multiplayer, but I understand this isn't reasonable to expect when online is dead and local co op is difficult. Whenever I did duos with one AI it was always worse than having a trio of real people.

11 minutes ago, Kuzu said:

This is literally the debut of Shadow's game; this was when the series was starting to hit a rocky point after Sonic Heroes didn't perform as well as they had hoped and after a promise, from Sonic Team themselves, that they were going to get on track. It was 2005, and the series was featured in the Walk of Game, celebrating it's legacy at the time and what was going to come forward...and it fucking ends with Shadow literally shooting it in the face. You're going to tell me this wasn't disrespectful to the series` legacy at the time? How you feel about the last ten years is exactly how Classic fans felt after watching this trailer. 

This was part of my point in showing how history is repeating itself, because this same attitude that was so prominent back then is now rearing its head again, except this time, it's Adventure fans who are the "Boomers" who are complaining about how things aren't they're used to be. And sure, you can sugarcoat it however you want, and I'm not knocking you for doing so, because this was the era of Sonic you grew up in, and to see actively shunned is would strike a chord. But I am pointing out that this attitude is not new, or any more special than how classic fans felt during the 2000's, particularly after 2005. 

I feel like there is one major difference in this situation: Classic fans have Mania now. Modern fans have their games. So this leaves a section of the fandom with no games they feel like they belong to.

I personally can replay the first two over and over (I may have a problem), but I think that's why we see so many Adventure fans speaking up now and not in the early 2010s when the change first happened. I could have complained during Lost World, but instead I just felt like I wasn't wanted and went to other fandoms instead.

I think that now is a good chance for a new era for Sonic, and I can only hope Sega doesn't blow it.

I honestly don't think the "we want Sonic Adventure 3!" fans are as frequent as they used to be. A lot realized that it's not the title that makes a game, but the "spirit". So even if a game exactly like Adventure never comes out, as long as it's "spirit" is preserved, I think that would be enough. Not to mention all these fan demos people keep making trying to show how to combine the Classic and Adventure styles. Yes it's not the same as making an actual game, but it's fans saying "hey Sega we want something like this!". Not to mention the screams of fans every time bringing back Chao is mentioned.

It took Sonic 4 (and other claims of back to the roots) before we got Sonic Mania, so maybe Sonic Forces will end up being the Sonic 4 of pandering to Adventure fans.

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1 hour ago, DryLagoon said:

I know it's not in the way fans want, but I do think Team Sonic Racing took some Heroes influence. Sometimes I wonder if it would have gotten better reception if it wasn't being compared to Transformed. Not that I'm one to judge as I always wanted an improved version of Sonic R instead of Sonic in a car. I do think TSR really shines in multiplayer, but I understand this isn't reasonable to expect when online is dead and local co op is difficult. Whenever I did duos with one AI it was always worse than having a trio of real people.

I feel like there is one major difference in this situation: Classic fans have Mania now. Modern fans have their games. So this leaves a section of the fandom with no games they feel like they belong to.

I personally can replay the first two over and over (I may have a problem), but I think that's why we see so many Adventure fans speaking up now and not in the early 2010s when the change first happened. I could have complained during Lost World, but instead I just felt like I wasn't wanted and went to other fandoms instead.

I think that now is a good chance for a new era for Sonic, and I can only hope Sega doesn't blow it.

I honestly don't think the "we want Sonic Adventure 3!" fans are as frequent as they used to be. A lot realized that it's not the title that makes a game, but the "spirit". So even if a game exactly like Adventure never comes out, as long as it's "spirit" is preserved, I think that would be enough. Not to mention all these fan demos people keep making trying to show how to combine the Classic and Adventure styles. Yes it's not the same as making an actual game, but it's fans saying "hey Sega we want something like this!". Not to mention the screams of fans every time bringing back Chao is mentioned.

It took Sonic 4 (and other claims of back to the roots) before we got Sonic Mania, so maybe Sonic Forces will end up being the Sonic 4 of pandering to Adventure fans.

Sonic Mania is kind of special though, because it was specifically made by the aforementioned classic fans. They studied these games to the point where they could replicate them even better than the official creators could, and took years for it to become a reality.

There just isn't anything equivalent for that with the 3D games, at least not yet. Mostly because 3D Sonic is a different type monster to tackle, and also because most Adventure fans like those games more for plot and characterization related reasons than gameplay related ones. 

About the only gameplay related critique hear from Adventure fans is related to games being pure 3D, but most of the screaming is related to peripheral stuff, and I think that's contributing to the division as well.

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15 minutes ago, Kuzu said:

Sonic Mania is kind of special though, because it was specifically made by the aforementioned classic fans. They studied these games to the point where they could replicate them even better than the official creators could, and took years for it to become a reality.

There just isn't anything equivalent for that with the 3D games, at least not yet. Mostly because 3D Sonic is a different type monster to tackle, and also because most Adventure fans like those games more for plot and characterization related reasons than gameplay related ones. 

About the only gameplay related critic I hear from Adventure fans is related to games being pure 3D, but most of the screaming is related to peripheral stuff, and I think that's contributing to the division as well.

I think that's because working in 3D can take a long time and very difficult to get it the way you want to. The fans who worked on Sonic Mania had been doing Sonic fan games for almost two decades. (I saw some of them mentioned when looking at old Sonic Stadium articles back before we knew what they would later do)

I like Adventure for both. If it was just the story I think Forces would have been liked more than it was. Sonic is a game after all. I do find the story and characters important, but if the game play is lacking it won't feel complete as a game.

I have mentioned details about it before, and have seen other fans even divide game play styles by Adventure 1 and 2, the latter being considered more of a  "spectacle platformer". I think another reason is the Adventure era had so many game styles compared to Classic that it's harder for fans to be unified on what they want. City Escape is probably my favorite example to go to. It introduces the new concepts like grinding, has various areas to return to later with power ups, and offers exploration for the players who want it. It's not completely open world, but it does a good job of introducing what SA2 is about Sonic wise. As for something more controversial, I actually like the treasure hunting stages. Some are worse than others, but I really enjoyed having a wider area to explore and the hints were an interesting way of trying to increase your speed at them. As for the shooting I prefer how it was in SA1, but it was for the most part not too annoying beyond the very slow ramps you couldn't traditionally skip.

If I had to explain why I like Adventure's game play compared to boost, it is the lack of boost. In Sonic Rush boost was okay, but it was considered it's own thing. I felt like I had more control over where Sonic went in Adventure, and if I practiced I could reach new areas and unlock new things. But with boost the stages have to account for the style, so you don't really get that. And yes I do want a 3D Sonic game to be in 3D, more so now that Mania exists. I have seen Adventure stages with boost, and I really don't care for it. Even with the spamming speed ball style you still had to account for the area around you. I'm not saying Adventure was perfect, I actually wouldn't mind the momentum style mixed with Adventure as it seems like it would involve even more control and mastery potential, while having natural spectacle instead of automated set pieces.

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Diogenes made a good point though; the series has spun off into so many different continuities and directions that all have their own demographics and they're all screaming for attention.  And when they feel like they're being neglected, they just scream even louder.

Sonic isn't the only franchise to go through this, but other series manage to handle it much more gracefully. There are a million different Mega Man, but it's nowhere near as fractured and vitriolic.

I feel there should be something for everyone in this series, but they need to define what is it that they want the series to be.

Mania knows what it wants to he, the movie did as well, and even Boom did. But 3D Sonic has yet to really define itself yet. And that lack of identity is largely contributing even further to the divdedness.

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15 minutes ago, Kuzu said:

Mania knows what it wants to he, the movie did as well, and even Boom did. But 3D Sonic has yet to really define itself yet. And that lack of identity is largely contributing even further to the divdedness.

I think that's because 2D Sonic was very consistent with it's main titles. The only really major difference was adding new characters, and a time gimmick that never returned from Sonic CD.

The movie isn't a game so it has less to worry about.

Boom didn't. The devs had to change their original intention and platform greatly, and it was horribly received at release. The only thing I see people praising is the cartoon, which again isn't a game.

That's because 3D Sonic is split into the Adventure era and Colors era. Even if we exclude all the spin offs, it had more game play styles than everything else combined. If we treat 3D Sonic as one whole you have: SA1 Sonic, Big, Amy, Gamma, Tails, SA1 Knuckles, SA2 Sonic, SA2 Knuckles, Eggman, Sonic Heroes (split by teams if you count their differences), Shadow the hedgehog's game play, Sonic 06 (Sonic, Shadow, Silver, and everyone else), Sonic Unleashed (day and night styles), Sonic Colors (boost and wisps), Sonic Generations (Modern and Classic), Lost World, and finally Forces (which is split by Modern Classic and Avatar).

That's a lot of styles to account for (around 24+), and all of them have varying level of fans. Even when you count for boost being the most consistent they've done, they still add other styles in the same titles (and tried to toss it out with Lost World).

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You're looking at this all wrong. If you count every minor gameplay shift as a entirely new gameplay style with a niche you have to account for then you might as well count Tails and Knuckles in Sonic 3 as different styles too. Sonic CD has a different take on level geography and a time travel gimmick so we might as well treat them as another base we have to pander to. 

The 3D Sonic games and the problems(automation, lack of polish, shitty controls) they have are largely pretty similar across the board. Maybe some people have preferences but that's like saying that Wind Waker fans and Twilight Princess fans are both different bases you have to pander to when both groups overlap a lot and turned out for the next two games. 

The way you guys break this shit up just doesn't make a ton of sense. at the MOST there's a generational divide between classic fans and everyone else, but other than that there's a lot of overlap.

And as an aside I don't see anyone in the Sonic fanbase putting on for Sonic Lost World or Sonic Forces here or on any other website. The dissatisfaction is a very general feeling. Where are the "modern fans" that like these new games?

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Well, there's a reason I say "2000 era" and not Adventure era. Like you said, there's tons of overlap in that decade.

The biggest divide is definitely between the 90's, 2000's, and 2010's becaus of vastly different the aesthetics of those games were.

And people absolutely defend Lost World and Forces, their voices are just drowned out because you guys spend most of your energy shouting about how terrible they are.

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