The Sonic List: Why Sonic Boom Will Be Awesome (And Why There’s Still Room For Concern).

Sonic Boom Logo

 

I truly believe Sonic Boom will be great. While the game trailer left me more confused than excited, you cannot deny the legacy of the developers working on the game. While Knuckles design has been incredibly controversial, one look at a scene from the show or listening to the recording sessions convinced me that the show is not only going to be very funny, but heading in the right direction. Yes, Sonic Boom has left some fans divided about its quality, but I don’t think there’s no denying that it’s looking better than originally anticipated. That said, if there’s one thing you should ALWAYS have with any Sonic media (except the comics) is caution. If there’s one thing Sonic Lost World taught us, is just because something looks great, doesn’t mean it will be. (I’m not saying SLW was bad, just…disappointing.)

That said, here is my list of reasons why Sonic Boom will be awesome and why you might still need to be cautiously optimistic.

"We're surround by Playstation developers!........Cool!"
“We’re surround by Playstation developers!……..Cool!”

The Game Developer’s Background

Why it’s awesome! – You’ve got former developers and art directors from Naughty Dog, High Impact Games and Chris Sean (the cancelled Sonic X-Treme) all working together to make Sonic Boom happen. There’s some solid talent here including Bob Rafei who was with Naughty dog from its very beginnings such as the Crash series, all of Jak and Daxter and up to the first Uncharted. Not only that, but there are several other Naughty Dog founders here along with staff from High Impact who worked on Ratchet and Clank and J&D games on PSP. It’s like seeing Sonic if he was developed for Playstation! This is their first big break though game under this new company so they know they can’t afford to mess it up. Not only that, but you have the uber-talented guys at Sanzaru games (Sly Cooper 4) working on the 3DS version. I could go on all day, but if you want to know more about these guys, just look at this article.

Why you should be cautious – All that Jak and Daxter talent seems to be leaking into the game itself. Just looking at the trailer, if you removed Sonic and the gang and replaced them with Jak and Daxter, it would seem almost MORE fitting (that “desert-punk” look reminds me a bit of Jak 2). There’s no doubt this team has the talents to make a great game, but do they have the talent to make a great Sonic game? Outside of that, there are some mediocre games in their back catalog including the fairly weak Secret Agent Clank. Still, it’s GOLD compared to some of the stuff Sonic Team’s put out.

"Knuckles is right. That upper-body work really pays off!"
“Knuckles is right. That upper-body work really pays off!”

The Cartoon Show

Why it’s awesome! – There’s been plenty of Sonic Cartoons over the years, but very little of good quality. Sonic SATAM is almost universally loved for its strong dramatic storytelling, Adventures had it’s good moments and watching Robotnik act goofy was always a treat, Sonic X while not that great, was fairly faithful to the games and brought in a new generation of fans and Sonic Underground was liked by a few because………I have no clue.

So many were worried about how Sonic would be represented in an 11 minute comedy-based CGI cartoon. Thankfully, we not only got one 3–minute scene from the show, but a behind the scenes moment of their voice recordings and I’m very happy with what I’ve seen and heard so far. While the jokes aren’t hilarious, the delivery by such superb voice actors as Mike Pollock and Roger Craig Smith help to deliver a very funny performance. Just a few of those moments were funnier than almost all of Adventures of Sonic. As a fan of the very silly Sonic X comic and of the writing in Sonic Colors, I’m very happy with this direction for the show.

Why you should be cautious – Because you’re all into dark drama and hate fun. XP

Okay, kidding aside, there were a few small concerns. Knuckles looks like he’s going to be the big, goofy dumb brute again and his “funny” dialogue sounded like stuff you’d hear on a bad Disney Channel comedy. Also, just from the small sample shown it’s obvious Amy Rose is still channeling her inner Minnie Mouse. “SIGH!” Speaking of…

"C'mon, you Ratchet and Clank reject!"
“C’mon, you Ratchet and Clank reject!”

Amy’s Character Change

Why it’s awesome! – For the longest time, Amy was just a one note character. Following and pining over Sonic with not enough development and growth. This changed over time and she became a little more strong and independent. This was in part thanks to having Cream the Rabbit as a sidekick (albeit that was really shown more in Sonic X and the comics).

With Sonic Boom, we no longer get a boy chaser in a frilly dress, but an athletic, gymnastic and stronger Amy Rose than before. Someone Sonic may be chasing after, rather than the other way around. Someone with less flaws, who’s smart, gymnastic and…..uh-oh. Uuuuhhhh-oooooh!

Because perfection is boring.
Because perfection is boring.

Why you should be cautious – This is part of the problem. Amy was already becoming tougher and more independent while still keeping her character flaws that made her a fun personality. What I definitely DON’T wanna see is Amy Rose become Sally “little miss perfect” Acorn. Sally has become the super-ultra, self-sacrificing, Christ-like Mary Sue of Mary Sues whose only flaw is caring too much and I really can’t stand her!! (Gee Jason, tell us how you really feel. Also, you covered this three weeks ago you idiot.)

In short, it’s cool for Amy to be tougher and more independent, as long as it doesn’t go overboard.

Go home Amy, you're drunk.
Go home Amy, you’re drunk.

“Finally, something interesting!” AKA The New World/Designs

Why it’s awesome! – By now, we’ve all seen the new designs and we all have our opinions on them. Buffles, the sports tape, blue arms, extra quills, you either love it or you hate it but you know what? At least it’s something different. We really haven’t had anything quite this unique and new in the Sonic franchise since “Sonic X” and even that was based mostly off the Sonic Adventure series of games. We’ve got a new design, new lands, new characters, new villains and more!  With all that newness on the horizon, what’s not be excited about? Plus if it doesn’t meet up to your expectations, you don’t have to worry about it replacing your favorite Sonic as it’s just its own thing. “A branch of the Sonic Franchise”.

Why you should be cautious – At best, Sonic Boom could re-ignite the Sonic franchise in a big way. At worst, we could have another Sonic ’06 that ruins the franchise further and we get more stupid “LOL Sonic-Cycle!” posts. Personally, I don’t believe it will go that way at all but you never know.

Also, just look at how ridiculous Knuckles looks. What with those tiny noodle arms attached to giant boxing gloves and don’t get me started on those Lego shoes. Wait, which Knuckles were we talking about?

Jason Berry wraps himself up every night in sports tape for……personal reasons.

 

 

 

 

 

55 Comments

      1. Ooop! NOW it’s like the Thatguywiththeglassess.com comments section! Thank’s for your comment, Mr. Maturity. I hope writing that made you feel better about yourself.

  1. The fact that it is Big Red Button’s first game could also mean that they are going for the safe route, and just make it a Jak and Daxter or Ratchet and Clank game with Sonic skin on it. Not expecting it, but it could be. However, I’m not going to judge the game before I have seen some proper gameplay, so I guess I have got to wait ’till E3 to see that.
    But than, the cartoon I’m really looking forward to. It looks cool. I’ll probably need to watch it via very legal ways (I live in Holland, don’t judge), but I just want the cartoon now. Give me, perhaps on YouTube.

    1. I don’t know about you lot, but I enjoy the Ratchet and Clank style of play and I’ll be interested if they meld it in with Sonic’s speedy pace, simply because I want to see how they’d pull it off. Like Jason said up there, it might not be a good change, but it’s different.

  2. Yet television and game critics will give mixed reviews and thus the sub-franchise is doomed into ugly mediocrity.

    You know, this is Sonic we know, right?

  3. While I don’t dig the Sally hate, seeing as there is nothing inherently wrong with male or female Mary Sues (if we’re going to be totally honest there are quite a few in this series); I did enjoy this article and the points discussed.

    I’ve got great hopes for this new series and I’m sure I’ll love it no matter what. I hope it appeals well to non-Sonic fans so I can share it with my friends.

    I’m hoping also that they will continue further develop Amy’s character to distance her from the 12 yr old who chases after 15 yr old or older Sonic. I dont know why that situation is considered ok when it’s super creepy.. I’m sure they can develop her other character traits eg short-fuse, caring, fearsome warrior & strong sense of justice to flesh out her personality than rely on the whole stalking Sonic thing.

    1. Screw that. I loved how unashamed she was in her pursuit of Sonic. All I ask is that she’s able to drop it if need be.

          1. Gonna disagree. I’d love for her to lose that immaturity and direct that…”passion” elsewhere. As she is now, she’s really just an annoyance.

            That, or have her be more like her current Archie counterpart to where she can like Sonic and still be a vital member of the team, take action and get things done.

          2. Are you talking about Fleetway Sonic the Comic Amy, or Archie Sonic Amy? If you meant Fleetway Amy, I would have no way to argue with you, as I don’t read those comics. But if it’s Archie Amy…then I’ve got a paragraph-sized storm brewing up.

        1. Okay, I was going about this the wrong way. Basically I want her portrayal in Lost World to be elaborated on. Her presence in that game’s plot wasn’t terribly large, but I believe it did a lot for her character. Every single one of her lines was focused on the mission, and had an air of urgency. She had dropped her obsession with Sonic for the sake of the objective, but not with the impression that she had lost it, or became ashamed of it. That’s what I want to see out of this reboot. Continuation, ironically.

          1. I agree with that, Amy was probably the most pleasant surprise from that game. I was hoping for some more character development from Amy, and thankfully we got it. If only it was elaborated on more…but to be fair, the whole plot of the game should have been more elaborated on. Either way though, I’m starting to see Amy mature more and more in both the games and the comics. Hopefully Sonic Boom will capitalize on that character development, not just on Amy, but on the rest of the cast as well.

  4. I’m with you on being cautiously optimistic. There are a lot of things about this branch that are grabbing me so far, but there are still a bunch of concerns that I’m hoping are going to be addressed. Before I get to anything though, I just want to re-defend my argument about Sally “Not a Mary-Sue” Acorn. Just because a character does a lot doesn’t mean that they do too much. The reason that we keep getting exposed to her emotional side is because few people can understand the weight and responsibility of being a leader and having to appear as the strong one (especially for a job as demanding as her’s). There are times where her emotional issues feel like padding for the story to me, but that’s as far as I see it. It’s not bad, it’s just what I would expect. It may come down to personal taste, but I would much rather have a princess who does too much, rather than a princess who does too little to the point where she actually makes things harder (*coughprincesspeachcough*). But yes, I will agree with one thing: I do hope that while Amy fills Sally’s role in this series, I really hope that she doesn’t become just a different vessel for the same character. I would still like Amy to keep the core traits that make her unique, namely her crush on Sonic and her hilarious temper. But I wouldn’t mind her picking up some of the good traits that they are describing, namely the independence, the confidence, the acrobatics, and the inner strength. I don’t mind if she shares those great traits with Sally, I just hope that she still stands out enough to be distinguishable from her. With that small argument out of the way though, I pretty much agree with everything else you said here. “It’s like seeing Sonic if he was developed for Playstation!” Oh God, YES!! It may just be because I’m a Sony boy at heart (“sonny boy?”), but I’ve always felt satisfied whenever a Sonic game landed on a PS3 system (yes, even 2006…I have personal reasons as well). Nintendo always had the home-field advantage when it came to Sonic’s more “experiment-y” titles and rightfully so (although only a few of them were winners), and I honestly have no idea how Microsoft keeps getting so much praise and support…let alone consumers…but Microsoft is still in the race, so they must be doing something right (….right?). All systems have different pros and cons (some more than others…), but for me, I always felt right at home when Sonic landed on Playstation. It just always seemed like a pick up and play sort of thing for me when something was on a Dualshock controller…although for some reason, most of the PS2 Sonic titles seem to fall behind in 3rd place. Be it graphical issues, control issues, or even coding/physics issues, PS2 always seemed to play 2nd (or 3rd) banana behind the GameCube…and sometimes the Xbox no less! But once things kicked into the seventh generation of gaming, the playing field got a little more level…which made finding a superior console still debatable. While the Wii sort of stood in a race all it’s own, the PS3 and Xbox 360 tended to be going head to head for a majority of the mainstream Sonic titles. While the PS3 seemed to have more graphical power, the 360 seemed to get more decent loading times and even some aesthetic differences…though that often depended on the game. Although I found more people playing games like Sonic 2006 and Unleashed with the 360, I always felt more at home whenever I saw Playstation buttons appearing on those games. It just feels more natural to me for some reason. Again, it’s probably much more due to my personal tastes and preferences, but if I had to chose, I would much rather have Sonic being worked on by Playstation veterans than Xbox veterans. At least a Jak & Daxter Sonic would resemble himself much more than a Master Chief Sonic. Still, I will admit, although I have yet to play Jak & Daxter, Ratchet & Clank, or even Uncharted, I can still get those kind of vibes from the trailers so far, and I while I hope they will take the best mechanics from those series and make them work well from the game, I hope it doesn’t become completely unfamiliar to me as a Sonic fan. I look forward to the emphasis on a more balanced style of gameplay…I would still like there to be a tiny bit more emphasis on speed…by like 10%. It doesn’t have to be in Generations style all the time, but I would still like to have plenty of super-fast speedy action available at any time I want without it breaking the flow of the game. I feel like I’m going on a tangent, so I’ll just wrap things up here. I’ve got lots of hopes, as well as a few concerns, for this game and show, but I’ll leave it up to time and my personal taste to determine if this direction in the series is really for me. And the fact that I still get to keep my Modern Sonic doesn’t hurt either.

          1. Rather than having to repeat something over and over again, I’d prefer to just say everything I have to say about something and then be done with it. If anything else has to be brought up though, I try my best to keep it shorter.

    1. I don’t think you’ve ever heard of this thing called “paragraph”. Yeah, you should use it more often.

      1. Yo Jeff. What’s your problem with me? That’s the second comment today. Do we have to talk about something?

  5. Having Amy be tougher is nice and all,I just hope it doesn’t lead to the way Archie does it by making her just plain un-likeable, I’d prefer if it was more like her personalty in Adventure 1, not overly obsessed like in Heroes but still loving Sonic. Personally, I just want Blaze in here. I don’t mind Amy, but Blaze just has so much more to her that makes her an interesting character and it’s high time she had some spotlight for once instead of constant hogging from other characters.

    1. I personally prefer Amy in the Archie series vastly over her game universe counterpart, so I can’t agree there.

      And I DO agree with you on, though, is about Blaze being in this. Personally, I’d rather have Blaze over Amy, but her showing up in any way at all would be more than enough for me as long as she gets to do a lot. Easily the best character ever made for the series and most respectable female character.

      1. Well in Pirate Plunder Panic she’s an ass to Marine and just is always angry and pissed off, not to mention Blaze gets shoved to the side for the entire arc turning her into a damsel in distress while Amy gets all the action and only when she goes Burning does she finally do something.

        So whatever happens, I just hope they make both of them great characters, and for Blaze, don’t make her like Archie’s Blaze who constantly need to be saved all the time.

        1. Everybody was pissed at Marine. It’s her thing. And that seen where Amy snaps Marine out of it is where you see Amy at her best, when she’s able to pull everyone together and keep a level head in a virtually hopeless situation. That, and she shut Marine up. I like Marine and everything, but she was not helping AT ALL in that situation. And the fact that she was willing to go head to head with a shark? A FREAKING SHARK!? Yeah, you’re argument is no longer valid.

          1. That’s the point, I didn’t read this arc to see Amy at her best, I read it to see Blaze at her best, she’s supposed to be the one that, yet instead, they treat her like some princess that can’t even defend herself and always screws up. Compare that to her games counterpart where she’s always doing something and fighting against whatever threat it is.
            And that’s what I’m afraid of for Sonic Boom, making Amy the best all the time while Blaze just turns into a worthless damsel in distress just like in Pirate Plunder Panic.

          2. Whenever Blaze is shown, she kicks serious ass. This time wasn’t an exception. Just because she got captured once doesn’t mean that she was held captive the entire arc, and it isn’t a regular thing for her. They just needed to show conflict. I can guarantee that the next time you see Blaze, she’ll be in a role much more befitting of her character. It’ll probably still be a while before we see her again though.

          3. You still can’t deny that she was held capitve for most of the entire arc, and every time she fights Captain Metal, she gets her ass handed to her by either a henchmen of his or Metal himself in just a few panels, and also, she was captured twice durning the arc, and both times Amy had to bail her out, again, compare that to Sonic Rush and Rush Adventure, where she always is kicking ass, but there is still conflict in the story.
            I don’t mind having conflict, but when it’s just to make a character look better than the other, then it’s not done well.

            I think this explains crystal clear of what I am trying to say.
            http://mixedfan8643.deviantart.com/art/Archie-s-Blaze-the-Cat-demotivational-434239334

          4. I can’t deny she was held captive, but it doesn’t mean I have to think any less of her, Amy, or the arc in general. That’s my decision. You’ve made your decision to feel this way about the arc, and that’s fine. As for me, this one is one of my favorites, and that’s not changing any time soon.

        2. Sounds like Blaze as always.

          I always found it odd when reading the Archie comics that Marine would hang out with Blaze at all since the royal twit can’t stop bad mouthing her to other people.

    2. “just plain un-likeable”? How in any way is Archie Amy unlikable!? This is probably the best and most developed version of Amy’s character I have ever come across. Adventure 1 Amy is a 2-dimensional drawing compared to how mature and developed the Archie version of Amy has become. What issues have you been reading anyway, because it doesn’t sound like you have been reading the last 20-30 issues.

      1. Archie Amy has two modes at most. Violent twit and Love Sick idiot, only rarely does the comic ever take us out of those modes.

    3. I could live without Blaze showing up at all. She’ like Sally, a character that’s far too perfect for every setting with everyone rushing around trying to make her feel better,

  6. Mostly I agree with this article. When it comes to Sonic, as of late, fans have constantly been on guard. We know critics are almost always harsh on Sonic, but honestly in general game critics continue to lose integrity with each review namely giving anything that’s hyped up, nothing lower than an 8 (expect tons of 9s and 10s for Titanfall). I do think people are making waaaaay too big a deal over the redesigns. Didn’t we hear this same crap over Sonic 4 using modern Sonic? OMG GREEN EYES WILL AFFECT GAMEPLAY AAAARGGGHHH!! Though the most promising thing is we have a studio with a good pedigree. I’ve played Jak and Ratchet games as well as Sansaru’s Sly 4, they were all excellent. Also notice how an American developer is the one that treats Amy with respect while Japanese developers made her a whiny fangirl stalker so despite her Minnie Mouse voice, at least Amy might be tolerable in this game and act like an actual person.

  7. There’s another thing I wanted to ask: Why does TAILS need a new voice actress? There’s practically no difference between them. Shouldn’t AMY be getting a new voice actress? I think 2 years of fan comments is enough for SEGA to take the hint that nobody is into the whole Minnie Mouse wielding a hammer thing. I’m not saying they should bring back Lisa Oritz (even though that would be awesome), but they could at least get someone of a similar vocal range. Heck, if Cindy Robinson could just change the range that she’s selected for Amy, that would be great! Because the way they are doing it now suggests that either Robinson didn’t know anything about Amy coming in, or even worse, it’s what SEGA actually wanted out of her! Either way, something needs to change.

  8. I still don’t understand how Amy keeps using that Minnie Mouse voice when she voices a woman like Kukaku from Bleach (or however the heck you spell her name). Not saying that Amy will get a voice like that, but come on, I know she can do better then a high-pitched voice.

    1. It’s like all she knows about Amy so far is that she’s supposed to be a female foil to Sonic, like Minnie is to Mickey. I swear, it’s like Sonic Team only gives them vague cliff notes of what the character is and what they might sort of possibly sound like if done by someone else. I mean, Jason Griffith got shown some clips of how Ryan Drummond did Sonic so that he would know the basic spirit of the character without having to imitate anybody. He was able to create his own voice for Sonic by knowing a bit about the character and his vocal past. I’m going to assume Roger Craig Smith went through a similar process when he got the part, but what about the other characters’ actors? Do they get the same treatment, or does Sonic Team hold onto nobody else’s hand but Sonic’s? I might be overreacting, but all I really want is some information as to what the process for Sonic voice actors are.

      1. It’s the same process. They play old clips of previous actors, and they just run with whatever the directors want. If they like it, the actors keep the job, so obviously they like Cindy’s take on Amy because they keep reprising her. Kate’s situation can be a number of things like: not liking her role as Tails, other projects are conflicted and she can’t keep it going, or she was recently contracted with a union. It’s not a matter of she can’t act as Tails because she’s the best actress out of the bunch, no questions asks, it’s whether or not she wants to do it.

        1. *sigh* Well, I guess I’ll just leave it as one of life’s upside-down topsy-turvy moments, because it makes no logical sense to lose the decent Boy Genius actress and not replace the Minnie Mouse actress. Whatever, I hope that Cindy picks up a good flow for Amy after she’s had some consistant and long sessions voicing her, cause so far she hasn’t been getting enough dialogue to really develop her voice much.

          1. Exact same problem with Kirk’s voice for Shadow, although he’s notably changed his pitch in the few games he’s been in. Not quite there, but, getting better.

            Amy needed this screentime though, so I’m sure she’ll improve. I could be too optimistic but eh, I’m glad I’m not the only one who thinks she isn’t getting nearly enough time to develop and get a feel for the character.

          2. I really hope Silver and Shadow get more screentime together. I really want to hear Flynn and Thornton get some more time together after hearing their dialogue in 358/2 Days, those guys are boss whenever they are in the same scene!

  9. There is a side ” cartoon” in this new show does not bother me at all because I love to laugh and I always liked the first cartoon Sonic, if the new Gothic fans seeking meaning in their lives do not like gags and good humeure , too bad for them I say , they will console with their favorite black hedgehog ( I hope he will not be in “Sonic Boom” too) . Otherwise, I was greatly surprised when I saw the new look of the characters ( I do not like ) but now after the surprise , I’m eager to learn more , and as I does not like Sally either, I hope she does not appear in and Amy keep her some kinks that makes it endearing without it becoming a “perfect” woman like Sally who never pooped while keeping the line. In short, hoping that this will be a good surprise because I was a little disappointed by ” Sonic X” that I found too silly ( Eggman nice pffff ) , we’ll see , we know too little about this project to bring a final opinion. What’s on , is that since “Sonic colors” I fell in love with the adventures of the hero of my childhood. ^ ^

    1. Just because someone likes Shadow doesn’t mean they are Gothic silly XD Besides, it’s interesting seeing characters done in a new light 😛

      I agree, although I don’t know much about Sally so I can’t make a fair opinion. It does seem like she is a bit more on perfection, and I don’t want Amy to become that. Frankly I enjoy seeing her swing a hammer and miss the bad guy, then suddenly trip later on and nail him in the head XD

      Sonic Colors was a great game. I was disappointed by the lack of humor in Generations, but I’m glad to see it coming back~

  10. Oki, but fans of Shadow often say they love just because he is dark and mysterious so I deduced that they love everything that is dark lol, but hey to each his own and then, characters like that appeal to girls while in real life … well, I digress, if I played “Sonic Generations” and I loved it too. I do not understand why “fans” are never happy, luckily they were not as demanding when “Sonic 1” is out. ^ ^

  11. i seen alot of actions going on with sonic games but the developers are trying so hard to make the best sonic the hedgehog series in the universe but they are trying there best to do so

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