Someone had to say it. (Creator of Sonic Utopia)

  1. In other words one of the reasons Super Mario Odyssey is so fun is because it’s fun as fuck to just control. Got the same feeling while playing Utopia.

  2. Playing any 3D Mario game offers the same kind of appeal as flicking a rubber band around; it’s fun just to try random bullshit with the physics to see what crazy stuff you can pull off.

  3. The problem is, and always has been, control in 3D space. Yeah, physics in Utopia are fun, Sonic is enjoyable to control etc. But how do you translate that into engaging level design and objectives? The formula lends it self incredibly well to 2D level desing, as you only have 2 planes to work with, you can quite easily pace the levels and create intuitive exploration paths. The interconnected Top and Botton routes works because of that, you're never really stuck thinking where to go, as the physics them selves point you in the right direction with there only being 4 to consider.

  4. Check out the stages in Titanfall 2 for an example. You can move very quickly and fluidly through them and there are often four or more main routes through most areas based on your height and speed and skill.

  5. I just have one specific point to question here. How is the boost formula cheaper to produce? It requires MUCH bigger stages optimized well enough to render quickly in real time as you blitz through them. That's gotta burn a lot of dev time and resources.

  6. I think he's talking specifically about gameplay here. For the boost formula,the gameplay is essentially a couple of lanes with some obstacles to avoid or boost through and some scripted jump segments that are essentially plug and play components with some minor variations. When you develop gameplay around physics based movement, your entire level design has to account for all the many possible movements that you can make. There's many more possibilities for unexpected behavior. Designing games for momentum and physics movement take a lot more planning and refinement in the initial stages of development when it's tempting to just move on.

  7. It isn't cheap. It is actually a really well designed translation of principles Classic Sonic relied on into 3D.

  8. while i understand his argument and he makes some good points I feel like he's forgetting the other big factor that makes sonic sonic is learning the levels and replayability for better times on stages and you can make an argument that games like unleashed and generations did that the best and i disagree with that sonic can't work with open-ended levels there are a tons of games that made massive changes to their series and even changed genres completely (fallout for example) and still kept the series identity intact it all comes down to execution at the end of the day

  9. i like how much he elaborates to justify his opinion. i get on twitter and blabber utter bullshit straight from my soul with no remorse

  10. honestly I hated it XD like 7 tweets worth of faux-intellectual preamble just for him to give the exact same mid takes everyone else has been giving on that dang hellsite >_<

  11. I do fundamentally agree with the idea that the way the character interacts with the world is foundational...

  12. I think it's weird that both you and the tweet are seeing something I'm not. Sonic Adventure and Sonic Adventure 2 controlled like ass. They're great games and I love them dearly, please don't misunderstand, but not because of their great physics and character controls. Movement in those games was the worst part of playing them for me, so I don't understand how either can be some shining example of the best Sonic has to offer.

  13. I played Utopia a year or so ago. The thing I most remember about its controls is how you can turn 180 degrees in the air, but only if you do a half-circle with the stick instead of moving it straight in the opposite direction. It feels pretty gross, but the control it gives you in the air is really valuable, so I found myself doing it all the time. I don't think I'd enjoy a full game that played like that...

  14. Momentum is good and all , but hard disagree on his view of the boost games (Im counting Unleashed and Generations only). Those two games are my personal peak sonic. Their designs have a clear goal and are executed almost perfectly in my eyes. Did not like the pretentious way he’s describing all this. He sounds extremely biased.

  15. Unleashed and Generations had you "ride the rails" (so to speak) for Sonic's gameplay. Being open world causes that formula to not work the same. The "rails" being a place to simply run forward with some direction changes; but ultimately, the goal being to move forward. Boost works absolutely incredible for that and is absolutely fun.

  16. I kinda understand his points about the boost formula. I recently completed Sonic Generations and have found Sonic more responsive and better to control when I was not using the boost mechanic at all. The boost mechanic just pushes Sonic in 1 direction and takes away a bit of platforming fun.

  17. There's no good reason why the boost games couldn't have creative use of momentum though, other than the devs being scared of players making mistakes, and it probably taking longer to develop.

  18. Why is it biased? The dev cares enough about their point that they made a fangame showcasing it. They have an opinion and have a lot to back it up.

  19. Totally agreed. I love just how much you can memorize classic era stages. In fact, I spent a few weeks memorizing Green Hill on mania to speedrun it and hot down to 32 seconds just from memorization

  20. Unleashed and gens funnily enough have basic forms of momentum, those details are unfortunately missing in later titles.

  21. I certainly agree that momentum has a place, and would too like to see "basic" momentum like going up/down slopes as well as grind rails. But for the love of god stop with this "Momentum is everything, if not then it's bad" BS, it's so extremely tiresome.

  22. Boost when done right, is always going to be my favourite formula for a sonic game. Unleashed and Generations obviously come to mind. I've always found blitzing through stages after mastering them, as the most fun thing for me to do in a sonic game, when the level design is as great as it is, with the previous two titles I mentioned.

  23. Unleashed/Generations are different playstyles that focus less on environmental interaction in favor of giving the player long strips to zoom across. It focuses on speed above all else.

  24. People continuing to use the term "momentum" when they're complaining about something like Sonic being able to grind up a rail forever, or go up/down slopes without losing/gaining speed is honestly tiring, dumb and confusing the point

  25. My concern for Frontiers it two things- lack of varying environments- especially when the X axis is largely empty.

  26. He didnt's say they are. He said the way games past SA2 were made is travesty, since they threw away everything they were doing so far for easier and cheaper way. That includes Heroes, ShTH, 06 etc.

  27. He may know how games work, but he's clearly never worked at a studio. If you know how the politics works, it's a very simple "issue". Sonic is a huge IP and despite the reviews all the sonic games in the last 13 years made big money (except maybe boom). It's not exactly all in the devs hands on how, where, and on what they can iterate.

  28. Friendly reminder that the hedgehog engine is strictly a graphics/lighting engine. They use other things for the physics.

  29. “games since SA2 have been travesties” SA2 dickrider. in my eyes, could give less than a fuck about what he says. These type of guys ignore 2/3rds of a game then see Unleashed’s night levels and deem it unplayable.

  30. As someone who has tried every major gameplay style in the franchise's history, I am yet to see where this kind of stuff is coming from.

  31. I think for the boost games it was fine, but this person does have a point in that, in a 3D environment with a focus on exploration, having a momentum system that rewards the player for interacting with the environment makes more sense. The boost games didn't have complex environments, they were different in level design, so it was alright then.

  32. I don't even disagree with some of the ideas here but this is so hilariously fucking smug it's just hard to entertain even a little seriously.

  33. You're telling me that the guy who made a single sonic fan game with one level like 6 years ago says frontiers will be bad because it doesn't play exactly like aforementioned fan game? Well butter my buns and call me a biscuit, I guess that means the guy at ign who gave the hands on review and all the people who played the demo were talking out of their asses when they said the game was really good.


  35. boost and PINBALL MECHANICS. because momentum in a sonic game doesnt mean to build up speed on ramps, it just means to keep up your constant speed (which you can do in boost games, its literally the point of them). pinball mechanics dont work with boost because if your pinball boosted you would probably fucking die.

  36. I highly dislike the fact that he calls travesty everything after SA2, it just come off as a massive dick, in my case, I absolutely hate Ori and the Blind Forest, I felt the game was pure shit aside the visuals, but honestly... I wouldn't call it a travesty of game desing, because even if I hate it, maybe it just isn't for me, like Forza Horizon, I dislike the game but I recognise it is well made, when Generations, Colors and recently Unleashed recive praises from a group of fans, even if I heavily dislike them I wouldn't call them travesty, specially if I became a game development with a decent following, there is a reason David Jaffe became a joke with the thrash talk he made to Metroid Dread.

  37. I got to Image 3 and stopped. I'm sorry, but there's such a smug, self-satisfied attitude with so many of these guys.

  38. I don't understand how they can be called cheap, when they are the closest in design to the original games. Replaying Unleashed & Generations and I am constantly stunned at the path options throughout each level in both games

  39. I totally would love a 3d game with a good momentun physics, but I think 3d Sonic games don't need to feel like the classics to be good, it's kinda unfair to judge a game for what it isn't.

  40. Yeah. Generations is my 2nd favorite sonic game. I understand why some people might not like the boost formula but that doesn't make it bad. This person's takes are kind of extreme.

  41. Well, cheap in controls. It's very simple, you move the control stick, click boost button to go fast. It's not as complex to program as creating a physics and momentum system that interacts with the environment on a deeper level. I think that's what they mean at least.

  42. When people think of boost games they probably think of unleashed and gens, because they are actually good examples of boost. However, they are expensive (time aka money paid to devs), sonic runs though entire cities in a couple of minutes, just imagine how much time and effort goes to designing those levels. Sonic forces on the other hand, uses much more simpler level design with just flat out smaller levels, so calling the modern boost cheap would be quite accurate.

  43. They are cheap in the sense that they do not require talented design, they are just a money sink that cannot sustain an entire game by itself, but is still easier for a company to produce than something that requires the hiring of skilled employees

  44. He didn't say they're "cheap". He said they are cheaper and easier to produce, which is just true. What do you think is harder? Making a massive open world/field/whatever with tons of different ways to play it or a very linear set of 2 or at most 3 paths with obstacles.

  45. You know what's really satisfying in the Mega Drive era titles? Holding the jump button to bounce off an item and then land on another one, bounce of it and maybe bounce into an enemy. You know what isn't satisfying in Sonic Adventure? Repeatedly pressing the jump button to bounce off enemies that are lined up to ensure you can cross a large gap without falling to death.

  46. He's mostly right, but I've talked to multiple people who've worked with him in the past and they all have called him an obnoxious manipulator

  47. That does explain a lot about his wording choices in both the thread and replies to people calling him out on said thread.

  48. I like boost and classic equally, but I fully agree that all this mindless crapping on the boost formula (mostly due to Forces validating previously-untrue gripes) has been extremely tiresome over the past five or so years.

  49. While I agree that momentum is absolutely necessary, I strongly disagree with his statement that "every 3D game since SA1 and SA2 is a travesty." I think that Sonic Heroes is actually far better in terms of movement than the Adventure games simply because it feels like I'm able to do a lot more. And while I do prefer momentum, Unleashed and Generations had their boost formula work quite well, and it makes the games truly spectacular. Hell, I'd say even Shadow the Hedgehog's controls are pretty solid. It's like if you were driving a really fast car and it actually feels much more like how speed it is supposed to feel. Like, I don't get the argument that Sonic Heroes and Shadow the Hedgehog are slippery, and they are, in my opinion, the best Sonic games control-wise.

  50. This man fully understands, at least, the meta and concepts that make Sonic games what they are. And why people from the genesis and adventure era seem to cling to the older style games fervently. At the end of the day, Sega doesnt want to make good games they just want easy money from a world renowned franchise and its just sad to watch sometimes.

  51. I’m sure he’s going to get flamed for dissing the franchise so much, and praising his own game, and I don’t 100% agree with him, but he’s fundamentally right, sonic team has been incapable or unwilling to create a good physics engine for sonic in over a decade, I’d argue that they can’t even make him control that well, in generations he feels like a tank, the moment I try to move in a 3D space in generations I feel like I can’t control sonic at all.

  52. Is it wrong to put your opinion on the internet? Nobody HAD to say it, obviously, I don't think they were being literal. I think they just felt a need to express themselves.

  53. I agree with everything except that the boost formula is easy and cheap. It ain't, that's why generations has 9 levels and unleashed has a hairy tumor (a fun tumor, but a tumor). The levels are rushed through so fast that a ton of level design is passed in seconds.

  54. Honestly this started coming off as incredibly pretentious around the fifth-to-last image. Ehhhh. Not sure how much I’d listen to this guy. Dude made one of dozens of generic open world physics test demo builds. Not like he’s some messiah of peak sonic game design like he seems to think he is lol.

  55. you don't understand, the simple fact that he made it in the first place vastly elevates his opinion over us simple peasants

  56. Utopia is often used as an example for this kind of thing, but what we have to understand is that utopia is a tech demo, it exists to demonstrate what a sonic game can be when created under that type of game design, and there’s lots of other fan projects with the same ideas. Utopia being the oldest is the one with the most flaws, which many of the other ones correct. GT is my go to because it plays incredibly well, and makes speed running through a level feel incredible, and it also solves many of the problems utopia had.

  57. I think I would fundamentally disagree with them as I do not personally enjoy Utopia, however it's good to see how passionate some people are for a certain gameplay style.

  58. That was a demo. I didn't want to shove too much in one post, but in later parts of the thread, he also that they're still working on the final game.

  59. He is right about a lot of things here, if there's so many examples of amateur developers developing momentum and also examples in earlier boost games featuring a simple version of it, why would there not be momentum in frontiers. What legitimate benefit is there to not having at least the gimped momentum from games past SA2? It wouldn't stop you from "dashing around like a maniac", but it sure as hell would make the high points way more fun especially in an open world.

  60. I have been thinking this. One of the funnest and defining parts of the games we love of Sonic, especially the classic games, my favorites, had fully developed physics that were fun to play around with. I loved figuring out how to do a spin dash jump in Sonic 2 and it's insanely fun to play around with. But now the controls and physics suck. I would have loved Colors more if the physics weren't so bad to play with, and Forces is just terrible. I hate Classic Sonic in that game with a burning passion.

  61. I agree for classic sonic that the momentum and "work" needed to preserve your speed is a big part of the appeal and an ideal starting point.

  62. But why does 3D have to be different? Why can't we have a 3D title that plays like a 2D title and isn't merely pandering to nostalgia? Why does 3D Sonic have to be a different thing from 2D Sonic?

  63. The thing that most people seem to miss in this is that this is the sonic that he wants, people forget that sonic is a kids game, momentum works well in 2d because there's not much to keep in mind, it flows good, in 3d, with a caracter as fast as sonic, it is just not enjoyable, maybe in a free-form no objective demo like utopia it works, but the more things you need to keep in control, the more you have to do to complete tasks, the less enjoyable it becomes. And this is something sonic team realized 23 years ago in sonic adventure

  64. It's almost like a game from literally two decades ago isn't actually the pinnacle of design or something...

  65. Nah, it was great, the way you could building up tons of momentum and go insanely fast is something that wasn't replicated in any game since.

  66. In this way, Sonic 3D Blast, IMO, has better gameplay than Sonic Adventure 1 & 2. Especially better than 2. Since they implement the somersault, the engine has to wait for a button release to do the roll, because it's checking for a button hold, in case the player is looking to do a Super Spin Dash, which means that the actual actuation of the button does nothing - you either have to release, or hold. I hate it when games have buttons that don't do anything at actuation/feedback.

  67. Heroes has some overlaps with the physics, but the controls for that game are pretty different, especially when you consider it has more linear level design and... Y'know, the focus is on three playable characters per team who don't function like Sonic. And Shadow the Hedgehog has pretty different physics.

  68. Oh sheesh, this is a long ass thread. That being said, this was a really interesting read. I am someone who is looking forward to frontiers, but in saying that, do not think I am blind to the problems the game has. Sega isn't some small company, the problems that people are having (Pop in and so on) shouldn't be an issue. I agree with what the great lange said about sonic being treated more like a brand than a work of art. Sonic is art at the end of the day, idc who you are, its art and should be treated better then this.

  69. They're forgetting the core of sonic games. Sonic didn't have a rough transition into 3D. It had an almost seemless transition into 3D. They managed to translate everything from 2D Sonic games into 3D. And MORE. But now games like Frontiers and Forces have taken steps backwards. They've removed momentum and proper physics and replaced it with things that don't even revolved around Sonic's movenent. But seeing former SEGA employees come out and say how toxic the environment is, I wouldn't be surprised if some devs DID have physics in mind but their ideas were dismissed (although idrk how game companies work on ideas).

  70. People really need to chillax with this “momentum” stuff lol. Momentum doesn’t and hasn’t, ever made sonic good. Things that make sonic games good are passionate story telling, good controls and good level design. You don’t need momentum for any of those to make a good game.

  71. So like, the reason the classic games have good control, is because they have good momentum, the reason the classic games took off, why sonic rocketed past Mario, was because the momentum was unlike anything ever done before, if you remove momentum from sonic 1, there isn’t much left that separates it from its peers.

  72. Do you think people would've praised the classic trilogy and the Adventure titles if the momentum in those games was unresponsive? It achieves so much in those games in a way the newer titles 3d titles never could have hoped to have. Sliding down the rails around San Francisco in sa2 felt practical and encouraging. Utilizing the level design of zones such as Green Hill and Speed Highway building up speed is so much more fun and organic than boost pads and automatic rails all around playing the game in your stead. Of course, if the level design and the core controls are supportive enough, you can look past it because there are more good aspects to focus on than bad.

  73. Well, momentum is important for good controls. A game like Sonic Mania wouldn't be nearly as fun if there wasn't ways to not only build speed, but conserve it too.

  74. This is one of the most factually wrong comments I’ve seen in this subreddit. Momentum is one of the core reasons why the classic trilogy and mania were loved and why sonic 4 was despised on the other hand

  75. The people going through and downvoting every single comment expressing any agreement with that thread are proving everything ever said about toxic positivity in this fandom correct

  76. OH my god these utter lack of actually putting that additional thought into why these changes happen rather than just say there are bad is stupidly annoying and completely ignoring many major points (like that games that have hardly any usage of momentum gameplay like Unleashed, Rush and Generations still are waste loved for a number of reasons)

  77. Lol this guy contradicts himself in almost every tweet. He says there hasn’t been a game with proper pinball physics since SA2, but the adventure games don’t really play like that. If you want pinball physics, go play robo blast 2

  78. As long as Frontiers is fun to play and I enjoy it, I personally wouldn't care. Looks like people who played the demo have really enjoyed it.

  79. Honestly by this point I 100% agree with the sentiment that after 20 years of Sonic games being made in 3D, there is absolutely no excuse whatsoever for a AAA development team to have this much trouble getting the fundamentals consistently functional and enjoyable.

  80. Tbf the only boost gameplay i actually liked was unleashed but that might be because it was a nice relief from the werehog stages. Boost gameplay since has just been press the win button. Even unleashed day missions was probably just press the win button but i liked the drifting aspect so idk.

  81. Remember the genesis of the boost gameplay came from the sonic 06 speed sections. If you say you like boost you must also like those. Puts on shades case closed! B) ;)

  82. I’ve been saying for a while now that Sonic needs to get a consistent, quality gameplay formula before it tries doing anything adventurous with gimmicks or storytelling. If they’d actually done that with Forces’ development, the lackluster nature of the story probably would’ve been forgiven a bit more.

  83. Sonic is a character and one thing about a character is that you get to explore with them and try new things, my favorite sonic game is sa2 but I prefer the boost gameplay cause it so fast paced and action packed I don’t have to build up momentum and be perfect to keep my speed with the press of a button I’m Sonic in all his glory..Fast as hell. I love all the different gameplay styles for sonic it doesn’t ruin it for me because we’ve had that style of gameplay in the past and if I really wanted that spindash, rolling, momentum gameplay I’ll just go play adventure or a fan game but as a sonic fan for a long time I can say that I’m more excited for frontiers than any other sonic game since generations you get the best of both worlds in this game yet I feel like it’s just being over looked cause everyone wants that adventure style gameplay I get it I understand but sonic is more than just speed and ball I’m so glad they’re going the direction they’re going in with frontiers I’ve been wanting a sonic game like this for a while now even if it the last in it series I’m glad I finally got what I wanted how could I complain

  84. On one hand, I really want a momentum based 3D Sonic. I love the classic games’ pinball physics and rolling mechanics, and demos like Utopia are a blast for that reason.

  85. I dont really understand why he says the games after SA2 are travesties when imo Sonic Heroes is literally peak Sonic design and energy. It plays and looks like a classic game much more than the adventure games.

  86. I agree with him about the player control aspect. But goals are important. It sets context, motivation and cohesion to the world.

  87. This is what sonic has always been about for me not just mindless boost that skip most of the level. I liked the adventure games not so much the games after expect sonic generations. Pinball physics momentum and rhythm and speed if you are good.

  88. Momentum is good and all, but.... If you don't enjoy the game, it won't be "saved" by it. He use adventure series as argument, but they are far from perfection, and guess what? Not everyone like them or think they are good. Plus, most of the time, it's not developers who to blame, it's people on suits. They decide what to show and when to release. They even can go nintendo route and take down fan projects

  89. Not once did I ever try and separate the two concepts from one another, if you'd actually read my original statement, I literally said level memorization is the second important aspect of Sonic level design everyone seems to forgo, simply because it helps boost their "Momentum is the only way to go" narrative.

  90. One thing: Lego Dimensions. It was the perfect 3D Sonic game and i enjoyed it way more than any other 3D sonic game ive ever played. It had weight, speed, actual damn physics.

  91. See and you can start to see the problem in SA2 bc most of SA2 is pretty fun and exciting but once you get to mech controls theres less satisfaction in just controling the characters then once you get to 06 as much fun as that games story can be the gameplay is just abysmal for most players

  92. I think I disagree with the exact statement of the Utopia creator there, but agree with the general sentiment. We need pinball physics in Sonic games. I don't actually think that boost is bad, but if that's all you have in a game you're probably making some mistakes. Take Sonic Colors for instance: mostly Boosting, sure, but the game took the time to showcase other ways that you can play with Sonic's speed. Boost, quickstep, a weird part where Sonic has to be a wheel and you control him as such, basically a lot of ways to play with the concept of Sonic being fast. It also gave us a final boss fight that was pretty cool before it got repeated in every subsequent game.

  93. Sonic fans when i kick every single one off the top of Mount Everest (they said they loved gaining momentum while rolling downhills)

  94. This is an old post, but I'm just going to say that Sonic Utopia's controls are so fucking good, but the problem is that the controls wouldn't really complement/work well with stuff like achievements or a full-on story. I think the best thing the game could turn into is an online multiplayer game with races, time attacks, etc. Sort of like Sonic Revert, but better. I've recently seen a leak of the updates, here:

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