It isn't without its faults, but I have never felt closer in a game to what a 3d Sonic experience should have been until playing this demo. The physics feel great, the speed actually feels well earned and controllable rather than being assigned to a particular gamepad button, even the badniks actually present genuine threats that you have to think tactically to manage
Actually the most striking moment for me in this game was so simple, I was running down a hill into a valley, feeling the way the momentum was carrying me up the other end, then realising I was being chased by a motobug nipping at my heels and only just managing to outrun it, it was a sublime few seconds where everything about the game just felt perfect... thanks for that, really :)
I have never managed to play a 3d Sonic game since completely giving up on them figuring it out after being bitterly disappointed Sonic Adventure 2, in fact the rest of this review is going to be mainly directed at SEGA and how they did everything wrong and led everyone astray for 20 years.
There has never been any sense of freedom in 3d Sonic. You are going to run down this corridor, then jump on this spring, then bounce of these two badniks onto a rail that leads to another spring, and if you miss any of that, the game is going to kill you with a pit of death because the designer does not want you to go that way. This fan game goes a long way towards mitigating that feeling, the basic mechanics of level traversal are all pretty much the same, but there is enough variety in the routes that you can even end up wondering if you are going in the right direction - which is a breath of fresh air for a series that has never managed to break free from its linear two dimensional origins.
Actually Sonic's pits of death really are a crime against gamers and have become so abused over the years that the only right thing to do now is to banish them from existence forever. In the 16-bit Sonic games, they always existed but were used very sparingly and tactfully, in secret or alternative challenge routes, or in later levels in order to amp up the tension or challenge, and they often existed for a logical reason, eg you are actually on a flying fortress at 20,000 ft. Even Hill top zone only has a couple token ones as if to make a point that it's a long way down if you fall off the gondolas. In 3d Sonic, they exist because the designers hate you and need to keep you in a box. If you accidentally fall off into the sea at the beach, you instantly die a horrible death. It starts unapologetically at the first level Emerald Coast, and only gets worse from there.
This game still has a few moments like that because all Sonic games do, but despite that it shows signs that the author took a deep look introspectively and though to them self "does this mechanic actually do anything for the game?" if you miss a jump on the first level, you might fall down a waterfall to a lower area, or an updraft will save you from a precarious edge, and with no lives to speak of the worst consequence is you go back to a checkpoint if you really fall way off the edge. There were several moments in the first level where I thought "Oh No", then shortly after realised I was actually safe. It was a nice feeling not having to be yanked back to the last checkpoint for making a mistake.
In an ideal world, the perfect Sonic game would be like Zelda, where if you fall off a cliff and die, it is more than likely because you were pushing your luck too far. Zelda doesn't actively try and kill you for getting it wrong. You even have a parachute so you can potentially survive any fall. When you die, it's really on you, and because of that, the game never once feels unfair. Even if you argue you need some way to limit the play area and water is the only way, well Zelda boxes you in with water, but you really have to wilfully swim out to sea before you actually risk drowning yourself. Sonic still won't even sodding learn how to swim, grrr
The controls in 3d Sonic have also always been wildly unpredictable and suicide inducing. The homing attack is on the same button as the jump attack, so you always eventually end up homing in on something when you didn't want to and falling haplessly into the abyss. In 16-bit Sonic, you feel safe when you press the jump button because it does exactly what you expect it to do and you are always in complete fine control , in 3d Sonic, you never have any idea what the hell is going to happen because you are at the mercy of what the physics engine is guessing you want to do. The homing attack itself is pretty much a necessary evil because it is much harder to aim in a 3d perspective, but 3d Sonic has always suffered from combining both actions on a single button. Meanwhile the Y button is always wasted on the silly "lightspeed dash", which can only home in on rings, and only then when you are directly facing them from 2 inches away.
It's good that there are a variety of moves, but the way they are executed by the player has never had any kind of hard, brutal revision. No one at SEGA has ever stepped back and taken an executive decision to straighten it out into something that feels intuitive. Just the simple refinement of separating those actions into clear unambiguous "jump" "dash" and "attack" commands would be completely game changing. You have to get the simple things right SEGA before you start adding stuff on top! (oh who am I talking to I'm pretty sure they aren't listening)
Those are really the only faults I can find in this game. They are all features copied directly from the 3d Sonic design precedent example set by SEGA, so there is really no way I can fault the developer, but because this game just feels so damn good to play when things are going right, as a direct result of the fact that it does certain very important and crucial things its own way, then it is all the more frustrating that it has to be weighed down by the very same imperfect gameplay mechanics that have dogged the 3d Sonic games since the Dreamcast days.
But it is so, so close to getting it right, that I really genuinely have some hope again. I hope no one reads this review and finds it too negative - there are so many things about this fan-game that I love and have dreamed about, I am just really going for the jugular on the facets of the game that I think SEGA themselves have never gotten right.
The graphics are not great, being inconsistent (example: Underground Zone's spikes compared to Sonic, and Sonic's sprites in general.) and just too blurry looking. Games like Earthworm Jim or Aladdin at least polished up the sprites a bit to look better and not have white dots everywhere like here. The scaling of assets can be inconsistent too. The music remixes doesn't really fit the levels as they're too energetic or so for them, however the game plays very well. The fact it runs at 30 FPS often is odd as a 3D game like TF2 would also run at around 30 FPS on this laptop. Ultimately, it's a good fangame with poor hand-drawn graphics and odd choices of music. Mega-Drive style renditions of the S2 8-Bit music would have worked far better here.
Amazing proof of concept of a new and modernized version of Sonic Riders, which promises stage builders for the fans entertainment and more content ports from both zero gravity and the OG game.
Plays smoothly and responsively, very similar to the first game (maybe somewhat faster?) bringing analog based tricks back and the air meter with some tweaks and qof changes, like boost holding. As its only a demo is hard to describe what should be worked on and what should not, as its easy to step over irrelevant or known information, but these are the only main issues i had with this game: - Side Jumping Ramps (Like the ones in metal city and Sand Ruins) can lead to weird undesirable angles rather than fixed jumps. specially notable when aiming to grind spots and flight rings. - Frustum and Collision Culling in this game works very sloppily. The game thinks it should unload things that are still on camera view, creating flashing models coming in and out of existence, including some characteristics of the main characters and the scenario behind the camera, and worse when the camera is inside a non collision based object.
and that's pretty much it. everything looks and feels gorgeous. the basics look solid, lets see how far it reaches in content!
Man this sure did bring me back ... Good job, guys! Please take all the time you need on this project, health comes first, No matter what randos can say out in the internet!! Wish you the best in further development. Cya!
I have been playing the first part for 10 years and I am very happy that it finally has a sequel.
Not long ago I finished it and it seems very well done, however sometimes I notice a bug that does not want to jump and unexpected closings.
Anyway, a great sequel.
For starters, I do want to give this credit for the touch ups it gives and the effort that was clearly put in.
-Wide Screen support is amazing, even going out of your way to reanimate the cut scenes to fit the resolution.
-New tails sprite is great in gameplay.
-New music choices are a nice edition and fit well.
-the drop dash is always a fun mechanic where-ever its implemented.
my positives do end there. As much as I like the idea of adding new cutscenes, They dont look nearly as good as the original's. Certain assets look really low res (could be a settings thing on my end), new animations are clunky and off-putting.
As fun as the dropdash is, I feel its implementation could have been handled a bit better, it feels a bit slow compared to that of sonic ats dx. I also couldnt find anywhere how to preform the damn thing, until I remembered how it was in ats, and it worked.
There are also minor graphical glitches and errors that will occasionally occur which I dont remember happening in the original. Like in the boss of rocky ride, a cloud overly appeared over everything else. perhaps that was meant to happen, but I dont think it looked all that good if that is the case.
Overall, I feel the jank out-ways the positives in my eyes. Sure wide screen is nice, but the more consistent experience of the original is preferable to me. So if you want to play bts, I'd recommend just going for the original. But if wide screen is really important to you, and you can look past the faults, or just havent tried it before, this way to play is passable.
One of the crowning jewels of SAGE in all it's glory! The movement feels so polished. The finished environments are as delicious as chocolate ice cream cake. Levels like Shiver Swamp have this fun mixture of greens, blues, and purples, creating a unique forest aesthetic that I've been craving for a while now.
The little things add up; Most games with 2D grass (like in Rad), if you look straight down it looks awkward because the actual ground texture is just a flat green color, but here it's actually painted grass textures, so the grass looks great at any angle! There's only so many NPC's added in but they all stand out and are pretty memorable.
As tasty as this cake is, a few ingredients could be a bit better:
I wish the spin attack didn't have a delay when using it. I find myself having to mash the button thinking "c'mon dude hit 'em!!" and strategically attack a full second ahead of time whenever I wanna land a hit on something.
Also, PC controls aren't shown while using Keyboard + Mouse, it seems like there's only prompts for the gamepad.
During the boss fight, I couldn't figure out if you needed to use the left or right mouse button to send the missiles back so i just mashed them until it worked. I tried using each one individually and for some reason that never worked.
Besides a few minor blemishes, this game rocks. I'm really excited to keep watching this game develop!
I was late to the party last year but I played this game for a good 5 hours with my friend when we first got into it. We were looking to play bomberman online through steam but we were required to buy it in order to just play with our friends, something you'd figure would be a basic feature. I'm sure the devs don't want me talking about all the great things this fan game has over the offiical games, so instead I'll just say that the game speaks for itself.
Just an incredibly fun and polished exploration based 3D platformer. Reminds me of some of the best 3D Sonic fangames like Sonic Utopia, only with interesting additions like enemy jacking, rolling, bounce physics, double jumps, and air dashes.
My only complaint is that sometimes you have no idea if you're going forward (which is also awesome), and sometimes I wish the bouncing lets you go even wilder.
Otherwise, just a perfect demo. Loved every second.
This is a pretty great game! It has a ton of potential and I can't wait to see this game get even better! I had a ton of fun with it and with some more work I can see this becoming one of my favorite fangames!
•Multiple playable characters with unique differences/abilities
•Pretty good selection of characters
•Most animations look pretty nice
•Diverse and open levels that have a lot of replayability
•Satisfying Homing attack that can keep your momentum or help you slow down if you want
•Controls pretty well
•Bumper engine is used in a great way
•Fast, fun, and skill based gameplay that feels like the evolution of Sonic Adventure's momentum based 3d gameplay
•Sonic, Blaze, and Knuckles are all a blast to play as and feel almost perfect ability wise
•The physics are great and the level design really uses the physics based gameplay in a great way
•Level design can be confusing at times
•Enemies are a bit too tough and aggressive
•Framerate dropped and the game lagged pretty badly during some parts (mainly Aqua Lake act 1)
•Some animations look a little rough and can be a tad glitchy
•Controls invert in pause menu and character select menu
•Couldn't find a back button in the menus (you have to physically scroll to back/exit and hit it)
•Some character abilities need tweaking (ie: Shadow's drop dash and Chaos Control attack)
•Shadow needs the most work ability wise (His Chaos Control attack is pretty useless as of right now and his drop dash actually slows him down)
•As of right now menu seems a little dull
•Change Shadow's drop dash to some other move (you could buff his drop dash but I think it would be nice to change it so he is more unique and not Sonic 2.0). A Chaos Snap upward diagonal teleport comes to mind (maybe it could be used to gain some height while keeping his speed).
•Buff Shadow's Chaos Control attack so it launches him farther when you use it (maybe you have to time it right to go farther so that way it doesn't just become a better Homing Attack)
•Add a stomp/drill ability for Knuckles since all the other characters have it (it feels weird that all the other characters except Knuckles have it)
•Change Blaze's normal jump animation to the same as her air dash (spinning with fire around her). Currently Blaze's jump looks off.
•Lower enemy aggression and change timing on some of the enemies so you aren't always hit when Homing Attacking them
•Add victory animation to characters upon beating a stage
•Add bosses (I know bosses were in the first demo with the other zones)
•Metal Sonic as an unlockable character could be cool
•Change scrolling controls so they aren't inverted in pause menu and character select menu
•Add a back button in menus so you don't have to manually scroll to back/exit
Sorry if this was long. I seriously enjoyed your game and I can't wait to see more of it in the future! You did a great job and I am excited to see this project grow, evolve, and get better with each release! Best wishes!
This game is a breath of fresh air! I love the Sonic Rush games and the models are incredible! I am excited for Blaze (maybe she could have a double jump/homing attack instead of an air-dash/homing attack and a hover instead of a stomp). Ireally like the idea of combining Apotos and Water Palace! I think you struck the perfect balance of boost available in this update (tricks can give you a lot of boost energy when used correctly and you actually have to think about how much boost energy you have). One of my main complaints would be that the drift was kind of hard to use and it felt unresponsive. This game is a blast and I can't wait to see more of it! Hopefully Shadow could even make a playable appearance in the future (maybe he could have an upward diagonal chaos snap dash instead of a stomp).
Bonus points for cutscenes - would have given it a 1 otherwise. The cutscenes are really funny and also quite charming. As for the game itself... I mean, I guess you tried? In the end, the stage's background lacks animation it's supposed to have, randomly becomes poorly ripped Angel Island background, the gimmicks don't even work correctly and the level is over in like 30 seconds - that's it, demo over. Come on.
See those screenshots? That's it, you saw the whole game. Everything aside from that is just Flicky8's default assets, level design that ends up being "hold right to win", badniks that we already saw in pretty much every single fangame, no bosses whatsoever, and... surprisingly good visuals for zones, to be honest. I've got to Sparkling City 1 and ended up getting stuck due to a loop refusing to let me proceed, attempted backtracking, jumped over a wall and ended up stuck in a random place above the stage.
I did not feel like replaying this demo just to see what comes after that - every single act after the first act of the first zone was around 1 minute long.