Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
batson

Was Sonic ever really in a good state after the Mega Drive era?

Recommended Posts

I'd say from when Adventure came out in the US to when Heroes launched (even though it landed to mixed reviews), the series was probably as close to as culturally relevant as it had been in the early 90s as it could have gotten. Regardless of its reception nowadays, Heroes was a big deal when it was new and while it was in development; and Sega had the full hype machine going and the franchise in general was getting lots of good vibes.

 

Was the franchise riding the waves to that full same extent as the classic games, no; but far closer than it has been at any point since then, and that's not really that fair of a standard to hold it to anyway. The entire genre started on a downswing soon after the Gamecube came out, so the heights that the franchise reached in those handful of years (especially between Adventure 2 and Heroes) are probably about as high as any platformer could have reached at the time. Even with critical opinion starting to sour on the Adventure games (though even DX was regularly lambasted for the sins of the conversion rather than those of the original game), there weren't too many platformers that got the same level of attention while in development after Heroes came out (I can only really think of Mario Galaxy and STH '06 that did). At least not until the genre started making waves again during this console generation.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I know SA2 is a culutural milestone in this series for a lot of fans but i think SA1 has always been the more broadly popular game; broadly, as in outside the fanbase. Still higher sales overall, IIRC. Haven't checked in a while but I think it's true. Wouldn't surprise me either. SA1 may be the biggest, most ambitious title Sonic Team ever produced, they were given a massive budget for that game since it was supposed to sell the dremacast. They certainly seemed to view it that way.

It's a similar parallel to Sonic 2 vs Sonic 3. Among most classic fans, there's no question that S3K is the pinnacle, but Sonic 2 was packaged with the console in an Era where hardware was being pushed more than games, so more people experienced Sonic 2 than 3. And so it has a more nostalgic, stronger legacy, despite the fact that even in 1994 most of the major magazines claimed that Sonic 3 was clearly the best in the series. Sonic 3 also came at a time when 3D gaming was experincing its first major breakthrough. Most series were figuring out how to transition, as companies back then thought that making the jump was an absolute necessity.... And for the time they were right, Sonic would not have survived as a 2D only series. 

 

SA2 for me, is more like the Sonic 1 for that generation of fans than anything else. For most of them it was the first Sonic game, they had no real knowledge or experience with SEGA as a console manufacturer and didn't know Sonic during his 90s heights. To them, it WAS Sonic, what came before essentially didn't exist. In the series history, it is the strongest dividing line between generations. I'd fully agree that it is one of the most influential games amongst the fandom for both good and bad reasons.  It definitely was the progenitor of basically everything up to Sonic 06 and to a significant degree even the boost games are derived from its more linear style (they just execute it better, despite the more tanky controls).

 

Edit: I think I agree with the classfication of the adventure Era as being "the silver age". Fairly accurate. The only hesitation I have with that, has little to do with the games themselves and more to do with the dreamcast failing. So even though both adventure games were popular when the released, they also released when SEGA fell out of the big 3. And for their legacy, I think it would have aged better had the gameplay obviously been more solid underneath, but not that as much as the later games not building on their good ideas. So when 06 hit, it did almost everything they did, but just to the worst extreme. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

6 minutes ago, UpCDownCLeftCRightC said:

SA2 for me, is more like the Sonic 1 for that generation of fans than anything else. For most of them it was the first Sonic game, they had no real knowledge or experience with SEGA as a console manufacturer and didn't know Sonic during his 90s heights. To them, it WAS Sonic, what came before essentially didn't exist. In the series history, it is the strongest dividing line between generations. I'd fully agree that it is one of the most influential games amongst the fandom for both good and bad reasons.  It definitely was the progenitor of basically everything up to Sonic 06 and to a significant degree even the boost games are derived from its more linear style (they just execute it better, despite the more tanky controls).

Sonic 2 was much bigger than Sonic 1 

The franchise's two peaks were both titled 2 -- Sonic 2 and SA2 -- both artistically and in cultural popularity at the time. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
20 minutes ago, Moose the Cat said:

 

Sonic 2 was much bigger than Sonic 1 

The franchise's two peaks were both titled 2 -- Sonic 2 and SA2 -- both artistically and in cultural popularity at the time. 

Im aware Sonic 2 was bigger than 1, it is the biggest game in the series history. But Sonic 1 is the beginning. And that's why I liken SA2 to S1, it was the beginning of the series for so many fans. It defined Sonic for everyone who played it for the first time on the GameCube. 

 

Culturally, I think SA2 has a very large effect on the Sonic fanbase, but I don't think it is as popular outside the fanbase as many think. I think SA1 is still more popular actually, and sold more overall. It was the biggest game on the dreamcast, and basically associated with SEGA's last console ever. Also, Sonic 1 was more popular and is the literal genesis of the franchise, I don't know how anyone could argue SA2 is anywhere near the impact Sonic 1 had. Not even close. Sonic 1 literally changed the dynamics of the entire console industry and made Sonic into a household name and SEGA into a major industry challenger overnight, quickly eclipsing Nintendo in Western markets. S1 is one of the most important videogames in history, for almost single handedly stripping Nintendo of its monopoly and creating the mass mascot hysteria. By 93-94, SEGA had actually taken the lead on Nintendo in the west and was #1, and this is all due to what S1 did. 

SA2 had nowhere near that impact outside of the fanbase. Like I said, SA1 is probably more impactful from a broader perspective, although SA2 is certainly up there if you just want to talk about the Sonic fanbase. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The sales the games got on the Gamecube were far more important to their legacy and impact in this time period than the ones they got on the system that was dead in the West in a little over a year and few people bothered with.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 minutes ago, Tornado said:

The sales the games got on the Gamecube were far more important to their legacy and impact in this time period than the ones they got on the system that was dead in the West in a little over a year and few people bothered with.

Don't know how you can claim that, when SA1 sold more copies on the dreamcast than SA2 did on the GameCube (have to dig up where I found that, but I believe it's true). Despite the system dying, SA1 was simply bought/played by more people overall. Should not really be a surprise, since it was marketed more heavily. 

I agree, the GameCube was a better, longer lasting system. But that doesn't change the fact that SA1 sold more copies than SA2. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
29 minutes ago, UpCDownCLeftCRightC said:

Im aware Sonic 2 was bigger than 1, it is the biggest game in the series history. But Sonic 1 is the beginning. And that's why I liken SA2 to S1, it was the beginning of the series for so many fans. It defined Sonic for everyone who played it for the first time on the GameCube. 

 

Culturally, I think SA2 has a very large effect on the Sonic fanbase, but I don't think it is as popular outside the fanbase as many think. I think SA1 is still more popular actually, and sold more overall. It was the biggest game on the dreamcast, and basically associated with SEGA's last console ever. Also, Sonic 1 was more popular and is the literal genesis of the franchise, I don't know how anyone could argue SA2 is anywhere near the impact Sonic 1 had. Not even close. Sonic 1 literally changed the dynamics of the entire console industry and made Sonic into a household name and SEGA into a major industry challenger overnight, quickly eclipsing Nintendo in Western markets. S1 is one of the most important videogames in history, for almost single handedly stripping Nintendo of its monopoly and creating the mass mascot hysteria. By 93-94, SEGA had actually taken the lead on Nintendo in the west and was #1, and this is all due to what S1 did. 

SA2 had nowhere near that impact outside of the fanbase. Like I said, SA1 is probably more impactful from a broader perspective, although SA2 is certainly up there if you just want to talk about the Sonic fanbase. 

You are aware that SA2 is the top selling third party game on the Gamecube right?

6 minutes ago, UpCDownCLeftCRightC said:

Don't know how you can claim that, when SA1 sold more copies on the dreamcast than SA2 did on the GameCube (have to dig up where I found that, but I believe it's true). Despite the system dying, SA1 was simply bought/played by more people overall. Should not really be a surprise, since it was marketed more heavily. 

I agree, the GameCube was a better, longer lasting system. But that doesn't change the fact that SA1 sold more copies than SA2. 

This is irrelevant, because the Dreamcast was already on its way out regardless of how much it sold once the Dreamcast bombed, that was it for Sega as a major competitor. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
30 minutes ago, UpCDownCLeftCRightC said:

Don't know how you can claim that,

For starters:

Quote

when SA1 sold more copies on the dreamcast than SA2 did on the GameCube

It didn't. And not only did it not, but on a even-by-Nintendo-standards insular platform it was one of the best selling games on the entire console.

 

 

But more importantly, this:

1 hour ago, UpCDownCLeftCRightC said:

SA2 for me, is more like the Sonic 1 for that generation of fans than anything else. For most of them it was the first Sonic game, they had no real knowledge or experience with SEGA as a console manufacturer and didn't know Sonic during his 90s heights. To them, it WAS Sonic, what came before essentially didn't exist. In the series history, it is the strongest dividing line between generations.

And this:

53 minutes ago, UpCDownCLeftCRightC said:

SA2 had nowhere near that impact outside of the fanbase. Like I said, SA1 is probably more impactful from a broader perspective

Cannot both be true.

 

 

No one bought Dreamcasts but Sega (and therefore probably Sonic ) fans and people who wanted fighting games/arcade ports. Sony had functionally cut the system off at the legs in the west 6 months before it actually came out; and Sega had alienated almost everyone (publishers included) from the brand long before. It's sad, but that's how it is. Sonic Adventure 2 cannot be the defining first moment of the entire series for so many people (meaning by definition they were not in the fanbase until then and probably weren't actually in the fanbase afterward since they still had so many Nintendo properties to choose from) and also be overshadowed by some game that most of them had likely never played (until it was also ported later) on a system that they almost certainly did not have just because it was the best selling game on said console that was dead on the market within three months of launch. You're dramatically overstating the influence and reach the Dreamcast had on the market with the mainstream.

 

 

People who bought Adventure 2 Battle were probably not built in Sonic fans (whereas people who bought a Dreamcast probably already were, since one quarter of the people who bought the system bought the game), and people who bought Adventure 2 Battle were probably not Sonic fans first and foremost after buying Adventure 2 Battle either (since they still owned a Nintendo console with many Nintendo IPs to choose from to go online to talk about). What they were, are people whose first frame of reference was Adventure 2 Battle, and would use that to frame their expectations for further games in the series they may have bought. That's important, because Sega was obviously catering to them for the next several years. Even if you want to say that Adventure 2's status outside of the fanbase is overstated,  okay; but there's no basis to say that Adventure 1 had a bigger impact on people outside the fanbase when they probably never touched it owing to what console it originally released on.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It can be cloudy when you remember SA2 was not released on as many consoles as SA1 or Heroes were though. Heroes was in fact the introduction Sonic game for Sony and Microsoft gamers at the time, while SA1 got multiple releases on PC. SA2 sold well for a Gamecube title, but keep in mind the Gamecube sold far less than the PS2.

Heroes, Mega Collection and DX are all within the 30 top selling Gamecube games as well, with Mega Collection not far off SA2's position. Sure SA2 was the first released, but that doesn't necessarily mean everyone bought that one first.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It means that the overwhelming majority of them did, though. That's both how the videogame industry works in general; but also specifically in context a result of Adventure 2 Battle releasing at one of the only times in its lifespan when the Gamecube was actually selling pretty good but also barely having any big games releasing for it.

 

 

There's also a bit of a difference in the demographics between people who owned a Gamecube and people who owned an Xbox/PS2 making it likely that Heroes being the first Sonic game they'd played probably wasn't as true for them as it was for people who bought Adventure 2 Battle; even if the latter hadn't been on sale for years at that point. The main delineating point between someone who had Heroes on PS2 and someone who had Sonic 3 on Genesis is the ten year gap; whereas the defining difference between someone who had Adventure 2 Battle on Gamecube and someone who had Sonic 3 on a Genesis is that the Genesis wasn't a Nintendo and thus was irrelevant to the first person.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, UpCDownCLeftCRightC said:

Im aware Sonic 2 was bigger than 1, it is the biggest game in the series history. But Sonic 1 is the beginning. And that's why I liken SA2 to S1, it was the beginning of the series for so many fans. It defined Sonic for everyone who played it for the first time on the GameCube. 

 

Culturally, I think SA2 has a very large effect on the Sonic fanbase, but I don't think it is as popular outside the fanbase as many think. I think SA1 is still more popular actually, and sold more overall. It was the biggest game on the dreamcast, and basically associated with SEGA's last console ever. Also, Sonic 1 was more popular and is the literal genesis of the franchise, I don't know how anyone could argue SA2 is anywhere near the impact Sonic 1 had. Not even close. Sonic 1 literally changed the dynamics of the entire console industry and made Sonic into a household name and SEGA into a major industry challenger overnight, quickly eclipsing Nintendo in Western markets. S1 is one of the most important videogames in history, for almost single handedly stripping Nintendo of its monopoly and creating the mass mascot hysteria. By 93-94, SEGA had actually taken the lead on Nintendo in the west and was #1, and this is all due to what S1 did. 

SA2 had nowhere near that impact outside of the fanbase. Like I said, SA1 is probably more impactful from a broader perspective, although SA2 is certainly up there if you just want to talk about the Sonic fanbase. 

We're kind of saying the same thing, but like, past each other. Yes Sonic 1 had the biggest impact in the sense that it is the beginning of the franchise. You could say the same thing about Street Fighter 1.

But Sonic 2, and Sonic Adventure 2, are the two biggest "jumping on" points. True, neither of them are possible without a first game to be a sequel to, but yeah SA2 was big because it was the first non-Sega exposure for Sonic, which opened the franchise up to the MILLIONS of people who played gamed but didn't have a Sega console, and it came out around the same time as Sonic X. 

Sonic 2 was the same way, supported by cartoons, and it was the biggest reason to buy a Genesis because the original game had done so well and turned so many heads, allowing for the much better Sonic 2 to also be the bigger impact. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
37 minutes ago, Kuzu said:

You are aware that SA2 is the top selling third party game on the Gamecube right?

This is irrelevant, because the Dreamcast was already on its way out regardless of how much it sold once the Dreamcast bombed, that was it for Sega as a major competitor. 

Like I said, SA2 sold more on the GameCube, but SA1 sold more copies overall. This is precisely why I said that SA2 is more influential to that generation who first played it on the GameCube.... Many fans had never played a Sonic game before, particuarly if they were young or had never owned a SEGA console it was the first forya into the series.

However, this does not change the fact that SA1 has sold more copies than SA2 overall, even comparing the dreamcast to GameCube numbers. More people played SA1 than SA2, period. It was just a more visible game to the mainstream, with a lot more marketing. It was much more important title for the company as well, which is why it had such a massive budget. These things are not in dispute really. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
43 minutes ago, Tornado said:

For starters:

It didn't. And not only did it not, but on a even-by-Nintendo-standards insular platform it was one of the best selling games on the entire console.

I'm in the process of trying to find the numbers, but yes SA1 did sell more than SA2 overall. SA2 sold more on the GameCube than SA1 did but I said that from the beginning. 

 

Also my points do not whatsoever contradict each other. I said that SA2 impacted fans more who played it for the first time on the GameCube, but for everyone else, SA1 was more visible, it was marketed more heavily and sold more copies on the dreamcast than SA2 did on the GameCube. I don't care how you slice it, SA1 was been bought by more people. 

 

Let me find these sources though, don't wanna keep inserting things here until I do. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 minutes ago, UpCDownCLeftCRightC said:

Like I said, SA2 sold more on the GameCube, but SA1 sold more copies overall. This is precisely why I said that SA2 is more influential to that generation who first played it on the GameCube.... Many fans had never played a Sonic game before, particuarly if they were young or had never owned a SEGA console it was the first forya into the series.

However, this does not change the fact that SA1 has sold more copies than SA2 overall, even comparing the dreamcast to GameCube numbers. More people played SA1 than SA2, period. It was just a more visible game to the mainstream, with a lot more marketing. It was much more important title for the company as well, which is why it had such a massive budget. These things are not in dispute really. 

SA1 was a launch title for a console. If you ever had a Dreamcast, you had SA1, but maybe not every person with a DC had SA2. SA1's later sales from ports balloons that number, I'm guessing, and most people are coming to the game late but having already played Sonic in some form. 

SA2 was much bigger by virtue of being the first Sonic game outside of a Sega console, so it's a much more common "first Sonic game" than SA1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Before you waste your time looking for numbers, I'll admit straight up that Adventure sold significantly better combined than Adventure 2 did.

 

 

What you're still not grasping is what the game sold on the Dreamcast was irrelevant because outside of the months of September, October, and November 1999 the Dreamcast was irrelevant.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 minutes ago, Tornado said:

Apparently they are if you've managed to convince yourself that the Dreamcast was ever a mainstream console and that Adventure must therefore have had more mainstream appeal.

Are you silly? The dreamcast absolutely was a mainstream console, you have to be an idiot to not think it. It was the first in the next generation of consoles after PS and N64. The fact that it was short lived due to SEGA's failures does not take away from that. I have no idea why anyone would say this. What does it even mean? 

I'm not trying to create some weird logic here. I'm simply stating (while in the process of checking) that SA1 sold more copies than SA2 overall. Including both dreamcast/GameCube sales and just comparing the sales across the two systems (SA1 dreamcast vs SA2 GameCube), SA1 sold more. I'm not making any other statememt or trying to qualify appeal. Very simple thing. It reached more people total and was a more important game to the company at that. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
6 minutes ago, UpCDownCLeftCRightC said:

Are you silly? The dreamcast absolutely was a mainstream console, you have to be an idiot to not think it.

It was dead in 3 months. THREE MONTHS. By the time it came out in the US, it had already failed in Japan and had been failing since March. No one bought Dreamcasts other than people who were Sega fans or wanted arcade ports. Majors publishers went out of their way to not support it; leading to Sega basically holding it up by themselves with things like sports titles that ordinarily would be handled by third parties. By the end of the year it had launched in the west, Sega knew the game was up.

 

 

The fucking 3DO was more of a mainstream console than the Dreamcast ever was. The Gamecube, which was a miserable failure even compared to the N64, at least had decent publisher support until the PS2 Slim came out and truly killed it. No game on a console that was dead in THREE MONTHS can have mainstream appeal. No console that was ignored by the market so thoroughly that it was dead in THREE MONTHS can be considered mainstream.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 minutes ago, Tornado said:

Before you waste your time looking for numbers, I'll admit straight up that Adventure sold significantly better combined than Adventure 2 did.

 

 

What you're still not grasping is what the game sold on the Dreamcast was irrelevant because outside of the months of September, October, and November 1999 the Dreamcast was irrelevant.

You think I don't get this idea? What I'm stating to you is that it doesn't matter. 

 

If a game sells more than another game, that game is more popular, period. It doesn't matter that the dreamcast failed. You can talk all day about the endurance of the GameCube, it's not in dispute, but the fact that despite thatSA1 still reached more people. Which is exactly why I said SA2 made more of an impression on that generation of gamers who started with the GameCube.

I don't understand why you think it's valid to discount the dreamcast sales. When the dreamcast released, it was easily the best, most powerful system on the market and the start of a new generation with tons of tons of marketing. The fact that it didnt last long had nothing to do with SA1's performance and reach, since for even a short time, it reached a shit load of people. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You're talking about mainstream appeal. You literally said outside the fanbase it's more popular. Sales on an irrelevant console that failed basically on launch are not mainstream appeal. Sales on a console made up exhaustively of people within at least tangential fanbases is not influence outside the fanbase. When you understand that, you can dictate what game is more popular or influential on popular opinion of the series moving from there.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I can only speak anecdotally here but SA2 was near omnipresent whenever conversation about the Gamecube happened as a kid. The only thing that held it down was being a gamecube exclusive, but SA1 shared that problem as well. SA1 wasn't on the gamecube at first either, so as far as we were concerned it didn't exist for a while and it didn't create nearly as big a splash when it did come out because of the Gamecube's nonexistent momentum. 

I don't understand trying to break up Sonic's audience from the mainstream either. We ARE part of the mainstream. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I feel as though after the glory that was the genesis days, Sonic Team began to be a lot more experimental with our spiky blue friend. They proved that they are more than capable of making a "Good" game, but the problem stems with trying to appeal to Everyone. Most of the Sonic fans who grew up with the genesis titles have families and careers now. The vocal majority are their offspring who grew up with Adventure 2 Battle and Heroes. What was good then certainly does appeal to people in the new generation, but a lot of people want to see more of what they know. And, the target demographic knows Sonic Adventure 2 Battle, Sonic Heroes and Shadow the Hedgehog. I truly believe that despite all the garbage over the years, Sonic is still strong and will be fine. The love from Fans and supporters are why we are still getting new games, at least that's what I think.  Sonic Team are constantly experimenting with this series ,despite the praise for specific titles it really feels like they just can't settle. I guess to answer your question: Sonic will always be good in terms of interest from both the fans and general public, he's just that cool. I believe people are always going to see more of this character, fans and haters alike.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
38 minutes ago, UpCDownCLeftCRightC said:

Like I said, SA2 sold more on the GameCube, but SA1 sold more copies overall. This is precisely why I said that SA2 is more influential to that generation who first played it on the GameCube.... Many fans had never played a Sonic game before, particuarly if they were young or had never owned a SEGA console it was the first forya into the series.

However, this does not change the fact that SA1 has sold more copies than SA2 overall, even comparing the dreamcast to GameCube numbers. More people played SA1 than SA2, period. It was just a more visible game to the mainstream, with a lot more marketing. It was much more important title for the company as well, which is why it had such a massive budget. These things are not in dispute really. 

As mentioned, the Dreamcast was dead on arrival. SA1 selling the more than SA2 on it is irrelevant, because only one of those consoles lasted the entire generation and it wasn't the Gamecube that crashed and burned. 

I didn't even know there WAS a  Sonic Adventure 1 until a few years later or that it released on the Gamecube, because there was next to no marketing for the DX port despite how "influential" it was. By contrast, I remember seeing SA2B's commercials all of the time when it came to the Gamecube. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 minutes ago, Kuzu said:

 

I didn't even know there WAS a  Sonic Adventure 1 until a few years later or that it released on the Gamecube, because there was next to marketing for the DX port despite how "influential" it was. By contrast, I remember seeing SA2B's commercials all of the time when it came to the Gamecube. 

Yeah I actually had no fucking clue about SA1 and thought Sonic Adventure 2 was the first 3D Game.

SA2 was also one of the games featured on the gamecube's box. I remember that pretty clearly. Nintendo was pushing it too.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I remember the excitement leading up to the dreamcast. It had potential but it was during a time where Sega and still to this day to a slight extent for some things had issues with rushing things out the door and commitment. Though their troubles actually started with the 32x/saturn mess

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Sign in to follow this  

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

You must read and accept our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy to continue using this website. We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue.