Sunday, 17 January 2010

New Sonic Potentially Good

Feeling tired, and today has been shamelessly unproductive, so what better to piss me off more than news of yet another Sonic game. Except actually, not the case, because Sega seem to finally have realised what the fuck they've been doing wrong the last ten years.

It's only taken them a decade or so of screwing it up, but finally they're taking console Sonic games back into 2D, and they're also removing all the annoying, shitty extra characters. What I find even better is that they set up the whole thing as a sort of "OK guys guess what utterly retarded characters we'll be having in the new game!", and have finally revealed that the correct answer is actually none. It's some weird act of self-mocking the shitty development and direction they've been taking for the majority of the series.

Really though, it's the 2D that holds the potential for me. There are plenty of games that don't work remotely as well in 3D as they do in 2D. Games like Worms, Asteroids, Pac-Man, shmups as a genre, and various other old classics that basically have their gameplay reliant on a 2D plane, and any attempt to switch to 3D loses the majority of what makes the game good. Sonic is also one of these games. The whole "crap I'm moving so fast I can't see where I'm going" thing doesn't work if you're looking in front of you in this magical 3D world. Pretty much all the appeal of the game gets lost and it basically feels like a cheap Mario 64 knock-off with Sonic stuck into it. And it's taken Sega fucking ages to realise this, mostly because retards keep buying the 3D Sonic games without realising they're definitely going to be shit. All the while there have been games like Sonic Rush on the DS that retain the 2D gameplay and are pretty fun, and taunt us at how good the main console releases could be.

Mostly the idea is that people don't play 2D games. Unless it's 3D the graphics have to be shit and nobody will love it. Which is totally not true. There are some excellent games out there which are popular and 2D. The likes of Braid, the new Mario game for the Wii, and plenty of arcade games in Japan. You can make a 2D game look as nice as most 3D ones just by going for "2.5D", where you have essentially 3D rendering and graphics but the game is played in a 2D field. It's not difficult to make massively shiny and sexy animated backgrounds to please the eye, while keeping the core gameplay in two dimensions, as it should be for the likes of Sonic.

Sega could yet balls it up, but when GT5 comes out I'll probably pick up a PS3 (not so expensive any more, and a cheap Blu-ray player), and unless they do fuck it up spectacularly, I'll probably buy the new Sonic game too.

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