Fuck you Sega: Sonic and The Black Knight helps destroy your nearly ruined childhood memories
You’re a strange whore Sega. One day you could be showing off something that looks great such as Madworld, and then the next day you could be showing off shit like the trailer below. Of course we already knew about the childhood memory killing potential of Sonic and The Black Knight when a scan from gaming magazine Nintendo Power revealed it but it’s today (or yesterday?) when the first trailer for this horror came off the floor of the Tokyo Game Show, currently taking place in Japan. Hit the jump for why this game will just continue Sonic’s current trend and other ramblings on Sonic from me.
If you’ve watched the trailer now, you should easily spot all of what is plaguing the Sonic games. Shit rock music where there could be instrumental masterpieces? Check. Flashy graphics to try and distract us from what we’ll be playing? Check. No Dr.Robotnik/Eggman as the main villain? Check. Sonic doing something over a large pit of death? Check. Some kind of gimmick that is supposed to make the game better? Check. Sonic running around aimlessly with little to no skill involved? Check.
The saddest fact of all is that the game is going to sell. Especially being on the Wii. Parents will think “Oh I remember Sonic from my childhood, I know my children will enjoy this.” and their children most probably will enjoy it. And I have no problem with that. I mean SEGA is only a business after all, they’re going to try and appeal to their target audience. And Sonic has always been aimed towards kids right? Yes, but at the same time the Sonic games on the Megadrive/Genesis and even the Master System and Game Gear could be enjoyed by teenagers and adults as well as kids. And Sonic just doesn’t do that for me anymore. Occasionally there will be the odd tiny diamond in a huge rough, such as Sonic Advance but in general the Sonic Games plain suck now. But even if I was fought back with the excuse that they’re for kids, not grumpy teenagers or adults who remember the good days of Sonic, I’d just shove Nintendo’s rentboy in the face. I’m talking about Sonic’s old rival, Mario. Not everyone likes his games but at least they can be enjoyed by anyone, whether they’re a child or not. Even with Nintendo’s current fucking of the casual crowd, Super Mario Galaxy was still an enjoyable experience in my opinion. And while thinking about this, it made me think of something Sonic doesn’t have now that’s not even game-related.
Competition. Back in the 90’s, Sonic and Mario were bitter rivals to the end, and this generally meant that more work would be put into each of both series games so that they could attempt to fuck up the competition. Now that the days of a first party Sega are long and gone, Sonic doesn’t have much competition these days since Mario is now too much of a Juggernaut to take down and that rivalry ended with Super Smash Bros Brawl and Mario and Sonic at the Olympic Games. Of course it’s not just competition though. There’s the declining quality of Sonic Games. Now I thought Sonic Adventure was a great little title. It stepped slightly astray from the style of the old Sonic games yet it retained the basics of what to expect in a Sonic game. Of course there was the tedious parts such as Big’s, Amy’s and to an extent Knuckles’s story modes and the camera wasn’t exactly the greatest but it was still worth playing. Even Sonic Adventure 2 wasn’t too bad but from Sonic Heroes onwards it became a big fuck up, so much that it’s too hard to compare a modern and classic Sonic game now.
However, I’m just rambling now so I will conclude with the 5 things that I think would put Sonic games on the Road to Recovery:
1 – Make Dr.Robotnik/Eggman the main villain again – Sega has been guilty of this ever since the Chaos creature came into the picture in Sonic Adventure, but at least in that, Robotnik was the main villain up until the last story. Also, make him actually evil again and not just a running joke like he’s become now.
2 – Bring back the composers of the old Sonic games – I’m sure anyone would agree with me if i said the Green Hill Zone theme is much better than say, Seven Rings in Hand. I also think that a soundtrack is vital to the game as it adds alot more atmosphere and this can be messed up with bad or the wrong music.
3 – If you’re going to be 3D, build upon Sonic Adventure and improve – Like I’ve already said, I liked Sonic Adventure despite it’s flaws so if I were Sega I would build upon the groundwork of that game. No, not like in Sonic The Hedgehog 2006 but an actual improvement. It wasn’t hard to do back when Sonic was young so why not now?
4 – Don’t give us some bullshit story – As much as the Mario games are criticized for their lack of story, I’d say it was an advantage for them. The player knows what to do in them; stop Bowser from doing whatever evil deeds he is doing in X Mario game. In the Megadrive/Genesis Sonic Games, they started with the basic plot of “Robotnik is trying to take over. Stop him.” and then built upon that theme but not by too much. Nowadays there’s depressed hedgehogs, lots of time travel and the supernatural phenomenon. And don’t get me started on the story book tales idea. IT’S NOT HARD TO MAKE A BASIC STORY SEGA. Sonic doesn’t have to be the next War and Peace.
5 – Give us varied Enemies again – Sega was good at this all the way up to Sonic Adventure 2 but then they fucked it all up by introducing Dr.Robotnik’s/Eggman’s generic robot looking versions of himself. Where’s my robot monkeys, bees and fish etc gone?
So there we go. Now I’ll finish with actually saying I have hope for Sonic Unleashed. There are some parts that are worrying (werehog for example) , but it looks a helluva lot better than previous 3D Sonic games post-Sonic Adventure 2. But then Sega tricked me with Sonic the Hedgehog 2006.