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Has SEGA ever actually said "Sonic Forces was made to grant fans' wishes"?


Scritch the Cat

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I come upon this claim a fair amount.  Often, it seems like it's done in the name of perpetuating the stereotype of Sonic fans as a whiny lot with unreasonable demands.  Yet I rarely see any source cited for this.  What fan, for example, suggested the Boost moveset be dumbed down?  Also, there's this claim that SF was made for Adventure fans in particular--why?  Has SEGA actually said it was?  Or is that just some extrapolation of their intent based on the (marginally) darker storyline and the (short) return of Chaos 0 and Shadow?  I'm really wondering why people see fit to blame fans for this game.

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Yep I have heard several times that Forces was always meant to have originally been a spin-off set in Sonic’s Universe like Tails Adventure, Tails Skypatrol, Knuckles Chaotix and Shadow The Hedgehog.

However Sega/Sonic Team probably decided to later brand it as a Sonic game as they probably didn’t have faith that sales figures would be especially high for a spin-off in the Sonic universe where you play a non established character.

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I've only seen Iizuka bring up one element of Forces that he did by fan request. The concept of the Avatar.
One such mention is here:

https://nintendoeverything.com/sonic-forces-devs-on-the-custom-character-and-story-plus-more-brief-talk-about-sonic-mania/
"First, Famitsu asked about the details on why character customization was added in Sonic Forces. Iizuka said that for many years in which he had been working on Sonic games, he received a ton of requests from fans to have their own original characters appear. While he has never been able to put in those characters exactly as they are, he still wanted to make those dreams come true, so SEGA decided to add a custom character that will fight together with Sonic."

So as far as the Avatar concept is concerned, there you go. As for the rest of Sonic Forces, I don't know.
The impression i get from Sonic Forces' devleopment, take it with a grain of salt, is that it was meant to be an Avatar driven action RPG with Sonic being locked away from start to finish. Then halfway of production, concerns were raised, there was a panic this game would bomb.
And Forces was retooled into a standard Sonic Boost game, with some remenants of the intended Avatar game awkwardly clinging to it.
Hence why the game feels so half assed, it's just 2 halves of a different game slammed together.

As for why rumors would blow this up to a "Forces in it's entirity is Sega furfilling fan's wishes" thing, the game is obviously shoving in as many Popular elements from the other games together as possible.
It's very easy to look at Forces as just being a checklist of "Things Sonic Team thinks fans would like".
To me, it reeks more of desperation rather then a genuine attempt to furfill fan's wishes.

I disagree Forces has any RPG elements. The "Upgrade your Avatar character with EXP to unlock more clothes" seem to lean closer to mobile phone trickery rather then any proper RPG gameplay elements.

I never understood why a console game has these Mobile Phone game Freemium elements in it, I can only assume the game was meant to have a full blown Fortnite esque online store where you can unlock clothes and lure the kiddies into paying with the parent's creditcard to speed up the process. But then Sega took it out of Forces.
Either out of the goodnes of their heart to save the Sonic franchise in having another stain on it's reputation with shady business practises.
Or out of lazyness that they don't have to put any effort into designing appealing unlockables.
Take your pick depending on how cynical you are.

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Sonic Forces is certainly full of fanservice done wrong.

But the "grant wishes" words from Iizuka are misquoted. I remember he said that in 2019 when talking about future games for the anniversary. Our wishes are being granted in the next game?

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18 hours ago, FlameStream said:

I'd say there are many that at least seek that RPG aspect in the games. Though it's pretty hard to include that in the games as we know now.

That said, Adventure and Boom seemed to have that placed in high value. 

I might be changing the definition, but I think of an RPG as designing your own character and deciding your own story. I pretty much equate the genre with The Elder Scrolls. 
 

Sonic games seem different because it’s all about the flagship characters and, (of course), the awesome platforming. 

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This might be a bit unrelated to the topic, but I was wondering after Sonic Colors and Sonic Generations, where do you think that SEGA went wrong with the franchise?  Was it when they tried to introduce the boost gameplay and over used it?  Were they trying to make more wackier storylines and that just didn't sit well with the audience?  Or was it because Sonic was practically the only playable character during this decade?

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19 hours ago, Rabbitearsblog said:

This might be a bit unrelated to the topic, but I was wondering after Sonic Colors and Sonic Generations, where do you think that SEGA went wrong with the franchise?  Was it when they tried to introduce the boost gameplay and over used it?  Were they trying to make more wackier storylines and that just didn't sit well with the audience?  Or was it because Sonic was practically the only playable character during this decade?

Something people might point to as a huge mis-step at that time was signing a deal with Nintendo pledging to make three Sonic games exclusive to Wii-U.  This did not absolutely predispose those games to sucking, but it should be recognized as essentially accepting a bribe as quick cash to sacrifice profits that might be made from broader releases--almost as if SEGA didn't have enough faith in the games making big profits! 

To what degree Sonic Lost World's flaws owe to that deal is debatable.  It's been charged with messing with Sonic to cater more to Mario fans--just as Sonic Colors, another Nintendo exclusive, was before.  I have to concede that Zavoc does resemble Bowser; I'm not sure I agree that the rest of the Deadly Six look like Mario characters, and I can't say to what degree the gameplay resembles Mario since I've only ever played the demo.  I'm not a boost supporter so the game's abandonment of the boost doesn't bother me but it seems generally agreed that what it made Sonic into wasn't an improvement.

On the other hand, there's no doubt that SEGA's honoring this deal is what ruined Sonic Boom: Rise of Lyric.  Once the prettier and more ambitious Sonic Synergy and planned for other consoles, its developers were forced to butcher, rebuild and retool the game for Wii-U.  SEGA also forced its once separate plans for Sonic Boom onto the game.  The game became widely known as "The New Sonic 06", though in this case, many who said "Never again" really meant it; the game bombed financially as well as critically.  People had a good laugh at it, but the subtext is just tragic: SEGA had big plans to expand Sonic as a brand and introduce it to a whole new generation, but its shortsighted thinking in making deals and jerking developers around to keep those deals sabotaged those plans from the start.

Decisions like those are why people still don't have faith in SEGA, even if Sonic games have never gotten that bad since and in fact had one brief bright spot.  It's not just customers; investors will look at a company that funds an ambitious project and then ruins it with one trigger-happy brain-fart and think, "No; I'm not investing in this.  Even something that looks sound could plummet at any moment."

 

 

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7 hours ago, Scritch the Cat said:

Something people might point to as a huge mis-step at that time was signing a deal with Nintendo pledging to make three Sonic games exclusive to Wii-U.  This did not absolutely predispose those games to sucking, but it should be recognized as essentially accepting a bribe as quick cash to sacrifice profits that might be made from broader releases--almost as if SEGA didn't have enough faith in the games making big profits! 

To what degree Sonic Lost World's flaws owe to that deal is debatable.  It's been charged with messing with Sonic to cater more to Mario fans--just as Sonic Colors, another Nintendo exclusive, was before.  I have to concede that Zavoc does resemble Bowser; I'm not sure I agree that the rest of the Deadly Six look like Mario characters, and I can't say to what degree the gameplay resembles Mario since I've only ever played the demo.  I'm not a boost supporter so the game's abandonment of the boost doesn't bother me but it seems generally agreed that what it made Sonic into wasn't an improvement.

On the other hand, there's no doubt that SEGA's honoring this deal is what ruined Sonic Boom: Rise of Lyric.  Once the prettier and more ambitious Sonic Synergy and planned for other consoles, its developers were forced to butcher, rebuild and retool the game for Wii-U.  SEGA also forced its once separate plans for Sonic Boom onto the game.  The game became widely known as "The New Sonic 06", though in this case, many who said "Never again" really meant it; the game bombed financially as well as critically.  People had a good laugh at it, but the subtext is just tragic: SEGA had big plans to expand Sonic as a brand and introduce it to a whole new generation, but its shortsighted thinking in making deals and jerking developers around to keep those deals sabotaged those plans from the start.

Decisions like those are why people still don't have faith in SEGA, even if Sonic games have never gotten that bad since and in fact had one brief bright spot.  It's not just customers; investors will look at a company that funds an ambitious project and then ruins it with one trigger-happy brain-fart and think, "No; I'm not investing in this.  Even something that looks sound could plummet at any moment."

 

 

Oh yeah!  I forgot about the deal that SEGA made with Nintendo!  I wonder why SEGA did that in the first place?

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On 5/13/2021 at 6:44 AM, Rabbitearsblog said:

Oh yeah!  I forgot about the deal that SEGA made with Nintendo!  I wonder why SEGA did that in the first place?

Lord knows. We are talking about one of Nintendo's worst performing consoles. Many half-assed decisions were made by Nintendo and other companies that committed to it (or didn't), in regards to how it was conceived and marketed.

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