SEGA Hoping to up the Sonic Quality

By Jorge Ba-oh 31.07.2009 39

SEGA Hoping to up the Sonic Quality on Nintendo gaming news, videos and discussion

Sega of America's VP of Marketing Sean Ratcliffe has said the company are working on improving the quality of Sonic games.

The last time the studio's prickly blue mascot tried to impress was in Sonic Unleashed. The game had a fairly luke-warm reception from fans and critics alike, in general a feeling that progress had been made, but it wasn't quite "there" yet.

Ratcliffe was quizzed on the quality and care that goes into Sonic titles, bringing some hope to future outings.

The quality is something that will be fixed over time. It's not something where you wake up one morning and say, 'You know what, we're going to improve our quality on this franchise,' and it magically happens. A lot of hard work goes into striving for quality. Interestingly, I think Sonic Unleashed was very well received by the kids. There was some talk about the werehog aspect, the slower pacing and more combat-oriented gameplay, but when we go out and test this stuff and sit down with the consumers, kids actually like that.

I think older, die-hard Sega fans who grew up with the franchise and the first Sonic the Hedgehog associate Sonic more with 2-D side-scrolling super fast, and they liked the daytime gameplay, but when it came to the slower paced gameplay they were fairly critical of that, and that's fine - they have their opinions

Thanks to NeoGAF.

Surely the 2D Sonic games were more about balance of speed and platforming, rather than all out "super fast" non-stop running? Blindless running for the lose, people.

Box art for Sonic Unleashed
Developer

Sonic Team

Publisher

SEGA

Genre

3D Platformer

Players

1

C3 Score

Rated $score out of 10  6/10

Reader Score

Rated $score out of 10  7/10 (27 Votes)

European release date Out now   North America release date Out now   Japan release date Out now   Australian release date Out now   

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A lot reviewers cry if Sonic isn't running non-stop so that's why we got Sonic Rush 1&2. It's like their memories of the original games are like that which I don't get because I never thought of Sonic as always being super fast when I was younger as I loved the platforming parts more, of which there is a much less focus on these days.

The daytime stages of Unleashed were definately a big step in the right direction. I also liked the nighttime stages. What ruined them for me was the horrible camera. If Sonic Team had just allowed you to control the camera at all times then being the Werehog would have been much more enjoyable. The combat was dull and repetitive at first also, but got more fun once you unlocked a lot more combos to use.

A lot reviewers cry if Sonic isn't running non-stop so that's why we got Sonic Rush 1&2. It's like their memories of the original games are like that which I don't get because I never thought of Sonic as always being super fast when I was younger as I loved the platforming parts more, of which there is a much less focus on these days.

Typical fanboy response, SatSR was the worst Sonic game I had the displeasure of playing and Unleashed isn't far behind it.

Birdo Is A Tranny said:
Typical fanboy response, SatSR was the worst Sonic game I had the displeasure of playing and Unleashed isn\'t far behind it.

How is it a typical fanboy response? How many times have I read in a review \"Sonic is all about speed!\" or w/e, completely forgetting that he needs solid platforming too. I don\'t see what that has to do with how bad SatSR and Unleashed may be.

As for this, it\'s all lies. Sonic Team don\'t care about Sonic, SEGA don\'t care about Sonic, they just get a little fed up of the complaints so they make an effort to get hopes up.

Sonic fans will enjoy the next Sonic game, but that\'s not good enough.

EDIT: Oh, also, if they listen to anyone it should be to professional criticism such as game breaking flaws and bad plotlines. Listening to the fans (\"Only Sonic? Man that sucks\") is what gives us crap rushed stuff like Sonic \'06, and listening to the preferences of reviewers (\"Run faster!\" \"Run slower!\" \"More animals!\" \"Less characters!\" \"I wish more of my bones were broken!\").

But more than anything they need truly talented developers, which most companies have, but SEGA clearly lack a little in.

( Edited 31.07.2009 12:21 by SuperLink )

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"Hoping"? Come on TRYING is a better word Smilie

Sonic Rush, along with Sonic Advanced before it are excelent games, hundreds of times better then the 3d entries.

They evolve the series in ways that *fit* (the trick stuff, or the special when your over a certain speed).

Not to mention kick-arse music and a lot to do.

Just give me a decent length 2D Sonic game done by the Sonic Rush team, and youd get a 9/10 game I swear.

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Sonic Rush needs to change though. The fact that the only challenge in the game comes from endless pits is quite a big flaw if you ask me. The Sonic Advance games, while perhaps not as fun as Rush could be, did have a good mix of speed and platforming.

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All they have to do is come out with another REAL Sonic Adventure, and everyone will be pleased.

It requires great courage to look at oneself honestly, and forge one's own path.


fix it now put him back in his own world not THIS!!!!!!!!

So, Sonic is a \"kids\" game?

I guess the people that played this franchise 20 years ago are still kids then, huh?

This is pretty dumb how they keep stringing Sonic along like this. Get this, apparently they can\'t make a new Sonic game without some sort of new \"gimmick\" (werehog, sword, useless character, etc.) Here\'s a new gimmick. FUN.

( Edited 31.07.2009 16:38 by Weo )

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Sonic is a "kids" game, it's aimed at kids, just like Pokémon and Mario. Pokémon is censored to keep the young age rating, and not even Sonic is.

Jump_button said:
fix it now put him back in his own world not THIS!!!!!!!!

He's in the same world he's always been in, just more modern looking areas. You only have to look at games like Sonic Heroes and Sonic Rush to see that the Sonic-y worlds are all still there.

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SuperLink said:
Sonic is a "kids" game, it's aimed at kids, just like Pokémon and Mario. Pokémon is censored to keep the young age rating, and not even Sonic is.

Jump_button said:
fix it now put him back in his own world not THIS!!!!!!!!

He's in the same world he's always been in, just more modern looking areas. You only have to look at games like Sonic Heroes and Sonic Rush to see that the Sonic-y worlds are all still there.

NO I cant see how you can say that lol, oh look Sonic in Japan oh he in New York is not the same as oh Sonic in Green Hill Zone

Sonic game can be so much more rush if they stop puting him on streets with loop-de-loops on Earth Smilie

Jump_button said:
NO I cant see how you can say that lol, oh look Sonic in Japan oh he in New York is not the same as oh Sonic in Green Hill Zone

What? Like I said, Sonic is on the same world just with more modern locations.

And then I mentioned Rush and Heroes, both of which are VERY Sonic-y. Did you misread something?

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I hate reviewers views on sonic. as "wayne-start" says, the old megadrive sonic games wern't that fast... i mean, compared to other platformers, such as mario, yes, but they had a distinct sense of control. you could stop easily, walk slowly if you wanted. you gradually built up to speed (which makes sense). in all the new ones i've played, you're instantly fast... it makes is so hard to control, and you're too fast! its impossible to actually do anything really, not if you're a child anyway.

Everyone says the Rush games were good, but i think they had the same problem, that they were too fast, you have no control. i never knew i was going to hit and enemy/wall/pit of death until it hit me in the face.

My opinion: go back to basics (As everyone says), make sonic adventure 3. Do it like SA2, dont create any new characters. stick with the ones we've got. i know most of them are annoying, but if we keep it basic, have the playable characters - Sonic, Tails, Knuckles, maybe Shadow (just so we can get more sonic style levels, but get rid of the guns), and then the others just be in the story. Also, bring back Chao. with new technology, and the popularity of games like viva pinata, they could get a lot of attention. Slow down the gameplay. It would work so much better. Also remove the hub-worlds. Save the space for more gameplay. and if they refuse, make it simple, like SA1. no quests. just a few secrets.

Opinions?

Let me give a little tip to Sonic Team: every fun game starts with a perfect control scheme. For the last 6 years most Sonic Team\'s games were ruined because of horrible control schemes, most of their games are just uncontrollable. They ruined potential masterpieces like Sonic 2006, Unleashed and Nights 2 with unresponsive controls. So next time the first thing they should focus on is working on ideal controls, and not coming up with some sort of gimmick.

( Edited 31.07.2009 19:13 by maeda )

SuperLink said:

Jump_button said:
fix it now put him back in his own world not THIS!!!!!!!!

He's in the same world he's always been in, just more modern looking areas. You only have to look at games like Sonic Heroes and Sonic Rush to see that the Sonic-y worlds are all still there.


Really? So what about Mobius? I agree with Jump, even if Sonic is in the same world then get rid of the humans, ever since Sonic adventure he has been coinciding with the human race, and thats something i do not like. Get rid of all the humans in the game (aside from Robotnik) and everything will be dandy.

They need to stop making gimmicky IP's to go with their new games and re-use some old characters. Shiiit i want Scratch and Grounder in a game, and Coconuts!

Infact why not make a game based on the Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog and bundle it with a re-release of the DVD box set or something! That will get people talking!

White Ranger said:
Really? So what about Mobius? I agree with Jump, even if Sonic is in the same world then get rid of the humans, ever since Sonic adventure he has been coinciding with the human race, and thats something i do not like. Get rid of all the humans in the game (aside from Robotnik) and everything will be dandy.

Mobius is literally a mistranslation of Earth.

The only Sonic games with humans are Adventure 1, 2, Shadow, \'06 and Unleashed, less than half of the games released since Sonic 3. Neither Heroes or Rush (or Advance 1-3, or Riders, or Rush Adventure, or Rivals) have any non-Eggman humans.

They need to stop making gimmicky IP\'s to go with their new games and re-use some old characters. Shiiit i want Scratch and Grounder in a game, and Coconuts!

Infact why not make a game based on the Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog and bundle it with a re-release of the DVD box set or something! That will get people talking!


Those badniks were all from Sonic 2.

And pleease noooo =_= Sonic in that is even more annoying than he\'s ever been in any of the voiced games, and the \"fan characters\" (or rather, liscenced renditions of incredibly minor characters) were pretty lame.

The old cartoons are perfect examples of how nostalgia fogs true quality IMO.

( Edited 31.07.2009 20:31 by SuperLink )

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\"I think older, die-hard Sega fans who grew up with the franchise and the first Sonic the Hedgehog associate Sonic more with 2-D side-scrolling super fast, and they liked the daytime gameplay, but when it came to the slower paced gameplay they were fairly critical of that, and that\'s fine - they have their opinions\"

In short, \"F*** YOU OLD SCHOOL FANS\" Smilie

Thats what I read from what he just said. \"And that\'s fine\"? \"And that\'s fine\"? No! It\'s not fine. It sounds like he doesn\'t even care. Well, there are lots of reasons why he should. I would begin to list them, but I don\'t feel quite like it at the moment.

It doesn\'t take a genius to know what a good game has. One of them being a good story, and good game-play. The game-play is the meat of the game. It is what the player will have to experience 100% of the time. If your game-play sucks (unresponsive and or glitchy *cough* Sonic Heroes) then you have a problem!

SatSR was horrible. I had my two friends over to play it and they hated it. I couldn\'t sell them the game for 10$ and I tried! The controls were awful, and sometimes unresponsive.

I agree with what SuperLink said about how nostalgia can get in the way of judgment. Have you ever played a game when you were younger and you thought it was the best game ever only to come back a few years later to realize how sucky it was? I believe that is what\'s happening to the kids who are playing these current Sonic franchise titles.

Of course they would buy it because its Sonic, but sooner or later they will find out that these games aren\'t that great anymore and by the time that happens they would have lost the old-school fans (the ones who built and maintained the Sonic franchise money-wise) AND the new-school fans (the new hoppers who are just starting to discover the blue hedgehog) and it won\'t be pretty.

Sooner or later the new-school isn\'t going to fall for that crap anymore...some of them aren\'t now.

The Company had better shape up the quality of their Sonic game\'s because with an attitude like Sean Ratcliffe\'s, Sonic may go belly-up X_X.

I\'m sick of your lies Ratcliffe....YOU WICKED WICKED DEVIL AAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!:-x

EDIT: REFERENCE!!!!



( Edited 01.08.2009 01:20 by Teetrab )

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I dont care what anyone say Eggman is not human he is now but he was never human was back in the day he was human-like

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Eggman? Whos eggman?

Its Dr Robotnik! Formular Ivan Kintobor!

Mobius is literally a mistranslation of Earth.

Not it isnt.
While names do often get mixed up, its very clear that the earlier games were set on an alien world.

I mean, gezz, there was floating islands, a moon tethered by a giant chain, and all sorts of other stuff that made the \"not earth\" pretty clear. (Aside also from the complete lack of humans -apart- from Robotnik)
--

Anyway, yes, the cartoon was crap. (not as bad as the us one though...but probably worse then SonicX)

..but Sonic the Comic was actually surprisingly good.


( Edited 01.08.2009 10:53 by Darkflame )

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Darkflame said:
Eggman? Whos eggman?

Its Dr Robotnik! Formular Ivan Kintobor!


Eggman is a nickname, he\'s still called Robotnik. On the other hand, Ivo Kintobor is a name used by the cartoons and comics, never in the games.

Not it isnt.

Yes it is.

While names do often get mixed up, its very clear that the earlier games were set on an alien world.

I mean, gezz, there was floating islands, a moon tethered by a giant chain, and all sorts of other stuff that made the \"not earth\" pretty clear. (Aside also from the complete lack of humans -apart- from Robotnik)


The earlier Sonic games were set on a sort of archepelago of eastern islands, mostly South Island, which is what most call Sonic\'s \"home\". Then there\'s Christmas Island, and of course, Angel Island, which need I remind you is in the recent Sonic games too. This is the reason for lack of other humans in earlier Sonic games.

As for the moon from Sonic CD, the events of Sonic CD are pretty specifically mentioned by Amy in Sonic Adventure 1, yet no character shows any memory of \"changing planet\", they\'ve merely changed locales. Knuckles has been on the Angel Island floating above the sea near the Mystic Ruins for as long as he can remember

Mobius is a mistranslation of Earth, or at most, a localisation effort to make the game seem more fantasy in the west. As far as the original series continuity documentation goes, it\'s always been set on Earth. Just a sidenote though, Blaze\'s homeworld seems a lot like the \"Mobius\" fans remember, it\'s basically an alternate Earth, perhaps they made it to keep both bases a bit happier.

..but Sonic the Comic was actually surprisingly good.

Despite being the exact kind of \"cheesy grimdark\" that everyone seems to hate in the new Sonic games.

Liking the comics and not liking the new game plots makes no sense at all IMO. (Nostalgia fogging)

( Edited 01.08.2009 20:51 by SuperLink )

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You need to redesign sonic character model. He looks like a tramp/clown. Over sized feet and hands. They need to drop the shit music. That soft rock pop shit is annoying and classless. The midi tracks from the megadrive games beat them hands down.

Move away from level designs that look like your on earth. no spanish villas etc.

No werehogs, if you want a more powerful hog you have super sonic who is amazing. Bring back diamond levels using the lamp posts from STH 2.

Secondary characters should be limited to knuckles and tails. the only decent characters to control.

Employ shigsy who understands camera control

As for the history only the comics which I still have refer to kintobor having an accident and transforming into robotnik. Sonic in the comics had an accident to become the blue sonic. Before he was brown and very spikey

I would love a darker themed sonic. The whole transformation into super sonic is very likened to dragonballz. They should play with a similar theme.

( Edited 01.08.2009 20:19 by meeto_0 )

meeto_0 said:
They need to drop the shit music. That soft rock pop shit is annoying and classless. The midi tracks from the megadrive games beat them hands down.

The Unleashed music is great. The Advance music has always felt right at home. You\'re probably thinking of Jun Senoue\'s tracks (SA1+2+Heroes+Shadow+BlackKnight), some of them are great but I know what you mean. Keep in mind that cheesy rock has always been Sonic\'s angle in some way or another, the MD just couldn\'t handle that type of stuff well. CD is proof.

Secondary characters should be limited to knuckles and tails. the only decent characters to control.

How do you figure that? The only control problem is with the developers, not the characters. Rouge should arguably control the same as Knuckles, Shadow as with Sonic, and Blaze was the first unique Sonic character in quite some time.

I would love a darker themed sonic. The whole transformation into super sonic is very likened to dragonballz. They should play with a similar theme.

Seriously? Usually one mention of Sonic going dark is enough to set the whole internet on fire. Most people want him to be all colour, cheer, sunshine and rainbows like in \"the glory days\".

( Edited 01.08.2009 20:46 by SuperLink )

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Sigh, the fanbase really IS fractured. We all clearly want different things. That's part of the problem. Smilie

wAyNe - sTaRT said:
A lot reviewers cry if Sonic isn't running non-stop so that's why we got Sonic Rush 1&2. It's like their memories of the original games are like that which I don't get because I never thought of Sonic as always being super fast when I was younger as I loved the platforming parts more, of which there is a much less focus on these days.
From the Time I heard of him he'd been having those Figure 8's infinity signs while running

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