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Sonic the Franchise's Personality


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So, the Sonic franchise has gone sort of all over the place since it was made. Yet people continue to insist that Sonic should go back to his roots. What roots, though? What makes the Sonic experience?

(Some games are gonna be left out here, forgive me.)

Well, there are a number of different ways the franchise has gone. There's the Classic era, with 2D graphics and pinball physics. His whole thing was being faster than the other games. There was a story underneath, but it was told through simple cutscenes and the manuals. After that, Sonic sort of floudered for a while as he tried to transition to 3D...


*cough cough*

After... that, Sonic Adventure came out, and it was recieved quite well. 3D gameplay! A more in-depth story! Voice-acted cutscenes! People loved it. Big's fishing levels were criticized, but other than that, it was good.

Adventure 2 was released, and it tried to go darker. In my opinion, it did quite well with that, with the fate of the planet being at stake, but critics have disagreed. It also introduced Shadow and Rouge.

Sonic Heroes came out, and it was more light-hearted. Light-hearted meaning, uh...


i mean he is a blue cartoon hedgehog who runs really fast but still

Shadow the Hedgehog released, and it tried to make the series darker again. As in guns and cursing. And aliens. Can't forget the aliens.


And then '06 happened! Oh, boy, '06. '06 went full-blown drama with human-hedgehog romance and time travel and a bajillion plot holes, and that's not even mentioning the gameplay. Uh. Yeah.

After '06, Sega tried to recover with Unleashed, and Unleashed was good, as far as the plot goes. Could have been more fleshed out, but Sonic going on a world adventure to stop darkness from possessing everyone with the help of his amnesiac flying chipmunk thing friend? It was good.

Later, Sonic Colors was released, and since then, the games have focused more on comedy than establshing any sort of actual plot of threat.

(I didn't include some games up there since I didn't know where to put them, so, uh, here.

Sonic Rush: The fate of two worlds is at stake, there's a fire princess, etc.

Black Knight: Sonic is transported to an AU version of his world, and he has to save it. The characters, IMO, were the best part.

Aaaand I don't really know which others to put here >.<)


So... Which do you think is what Sonic should be? Why? I'd like him to have his personality in Black Knight and the adventure aspect of Unleashed, personally, with some humor sprinkled around but never the main focus.

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I want Sonic to have his personality from the storybook games... a smart and cocky guy who had a get it done attitude and would make a joke or two that fit his character on top of being someone who cared more for others then himself. Thats the Sonic I know and love and I'd like to see him again.

As for adventure, I chose Sonic CD style as it has a bit of darkness and light and had a little humor and cocky moments yet we know when we had to take things seriously. 

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S3&K, SA1, SA2, Unleashed, the Storybooks, and I'm gonna put my neck out and say Colors for all it's flaws.

Each has a flexible mood that doesn't betray the nature of the franchise, much like how Disney/Pixar movies do for their audiences. Each one delivers something fun, entertaining, and in other cases, intense as you go along with what they show.

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I think the games that best epitomize the most ideal for series' identity and the best, most appropriate tones and character portrayals is;

- Sonic CD, Sonic 3 & Knuckles and Heroes for all nailing the fantasy/realism balance without going too far in either direction. Adventure series and Unleashed perhaps go a little too far in the "realistic" direction (Though I can forgive Unleashed for it because the art direction still harmonized extremely well with Sonic and co's designs) whilst '06 pole vaults over the line and just looks drab, lifeless and horrid.

- The Adventure series, Unleashed and the Storybook games for having the best characterization and balance of tones that never felt that they were too "serious" or too "lighthearted" and for having the best brand of comedy. Which is both quite funny for the most part and character-driven, the latter of which gives the funny parts such impact. In addition, none of those stories were derailed for the sake of their tone and all of them had character development to an extent.

What makes those five games nail the ideal in addition is that they incorporate underlying messages that impart depth to the characters and narrative in general and none of the "lessons" that they get-across undermine themselves due to bad writing (I'm looking at you, Lost World).

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If i were to describe what i want from the sonic games then it would be immersion and a sense of purpose. A lot of new sonic games feels like they just go " here's your level, complete it and we will give you another level and a bit of story that you wont be that interested in anyway." Say what you will about the sa1, 06 and unleashed hubworlds. they at least made me feel like i was actualy running in a world. I was presented a problem, a location and a duty to fix said problem. everything felt connected and didnt take me out of the experience. i could immerse myself while still enjoying it all as a game. 

Edited by PandoloFox
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Hey remember when 3D Sonic games used to give you a lil moral lesson?

Black Knight, 06, SA1: Believe in yourself.

ShTH, Secret Rings, SA2: What was in the past is in the past, focus on now.

Heroes,Riders, SA1, Unleashed: Enjoy Life/ Good to have good friends.


So cheesy yet so much YES!

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