Sonic Forces was never a great sonic game

Twitter has been my go-to social media platform since I was 17 for researching stories, sometimes talking about things that happen in my life, and participating in speeches about games – especially Sonic the Hedgehog. This talk last month focused on Sonic Forces.

The blue bird machine argument that I was busy raging against was that Sonic Forces was a great Sonic game. Almost four years after its release, fans were already calling it classic. Some defended it, calling it “not bad at all”, but most others went much further, praising the game’s ambition, storytelling, and controls. Even criticism came from the game being “too ambitious. “. Sorry, but the truth is, it’s not just good.

Related: Sonic Will Be Alright Without Eggman, But He Will Be MissedEven though I love Sonic and have devoured most of his games for almost 18 years, I’m sorry to say I’m in the camp that rates Forces as “not great”. The music was good – the soundtrack is almost always the crown jewel of every Sonic game – but everything else about Forces, from the design and lighting to the dialogue and mechanics of the character creator. , left me with a bad taste in my mouth. Put simply, Forces is just as bad, if not worse, than Sonic ’06 and Sonic Boom: Rise of Lyric combined.

Sonic Forces x Hooters

via Famitsu

After a relatively long wait of four years, Forces experienced a cycle of hype. Sega has been promoting Forces with constant trailer releases on YouTube all the way to a Hooters marketing campaign in Japan.

For Sonic fans, the hype cannot be overstated. I bought a PS4 just for Forces, and on the game’s launch day on November 7th, I picked up the game from a GameStop five minutes from my house on my way to school and hauled it around. my backpack until I get home. Thinking about it now, I was happy to finally play a Sonic game that wasn’t a classic Sonic game, but at the same time, I was secretly disappointed with this turn of events.

Sonic Forces_custom avatar

The fan art side of the Sonic fan base had a day in the field when Sega introduced the custom avatar system in Sonic Forces, as it meant they could make their Sonic avatars to look exactly like the OCs. that they create every day. I expected to be able to build that looks like some of my favorite celebrities, like Britney Spears, Ariana Grande, Beyonce, Avril Lavinge or J.Lo.

When I went to create my avatar and customize it throughout the game, I was shocked to find that there was no hairstyle option that went beyond their shoulders to their waist. The only animal with long hair is the bird, and even then it’s a ponytail.

What’s wrong with the female characters in Sonic who have long hair? The only female characters in the Sonic the Hedgehog series with long hair are Tikal and Wave – no, Cream’s long ears don’t count as hair extensions. I’ve had a hedgehog-echidna hybrid OC with pink streaks in my mind since I was 11 – echidnas are the only species in the Sonic Universe allowed to have long hair, apparently – and I was furious at not being able to design my OC in a character creator specially invented to allow Sonic fans to create their OCs.

Sonic Forces_lighting (1)

As for the game itself, I understand that Forces is set against the backdrop of a dystopian apocalypse similar to The Walking Dead, but Sonic Team shouldn’t have shed such crappy lighting in some areas. In demolished parts of Sunset City and in static cutscenes, for example, Sonic’s fur changed from a blossoming ocean blue to faded denim.

Sonic’s dull lighting doesn’t help when his spiky hair is a bit shorter than normal. Even in Colors, when the sun sets over Sweet Mountain and he’s behind Sonic, his fur still remains the shadow of the cobalt in that light.

Sound forces_dialogue

Then we come to the dialogue. In most modern Sonic games, it sets the tone for a shonen-esque story, especially in Sonic Adventure 2, Heroes, Shadow the Hedgehog, Riders, Unleashed, and even the Wii-exclusive storybook series. In Forces, however, the dialogue seems as irritating as a teacher scratching his fingernails on a chalkboard.

Warren Graff and Ken Pontac’s screenwriting peaked in Colors, but their skills went straight to hell in Forces. One of the conversations is, “Now is not the time to think, it is time to run! And I mean, of course. I guess these are words spoken in the correct order. Let’s go ahead and call it a sentence. Also, Sonic asking Infinite, “So what’s your favorite color? Do you like long romantic walks on the beach? What’s the source of your power? You can skip the first two questions if you want,” is typical of the worse, the most forced comedy that we see too often in platform games, but seldom see in generally much more spiritual Sonic games. The only time the script worked was the part in Episode Shadow where Shadow Roundhouse kicked the shit out of Infinite until emotional collapse.

Sonic Forces might have been an ambitious Sonic game, but that doesn’t make it good. I might have skipped Sonic Boom: Rise of Lyric because I didn’t have a Wii U, but I should have known Forces would never be a great Sonic game. More deceive me. I sincerely hope that Sonic Rangers – or whatever the Sonic team decides to call it – does better next year. Otherwise I’m sure everyone on Twitter will say it’s great four years from now anyway.

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