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  • Sonic Dream Team Available Now on Apple Arcade!

    The short wait is over!

    Today's the day! SEGA HARDlight's 3D Sonic platformer, Sonic Dream Team, is out now on Apple Arcade! You can play it on any Apple device capable of running Apple Arcade. It's available on iPhones, iPads, Apple TV HDs/4Ks, and Macs. Apple TV users will need a controller, though a controller from any modern console can be used.

    Stay tuned to Sonic Stadium for further coverage!


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    SolidSurgeTT

    Posted (edited)

    Let's do it to it.

    I like Ariem's voice. Authoritative but not imposing.

    It runs at 60fps on my iPhone 14 Pro Max but I didn't expect it to be that cut down on there. It's my iPad Pro 10.5" and Apple TV 4K that have me wondering about the performance (the MacBook Pro should be fine since it uses discrete graphics -- probably expect better performance there than any of the rest, as even the iPhone needs to run at one tick below "High" graphics settings).

    EDIT: Well, I guess I was wrong about the MacBook. It defaulted to "Medium" and seemed like it took awhile to get settled into a good performance groove. I ramped it up to "Very High" but that didn't seem to affect performance at all. I'm not sure it's using this computer's discrete graphics chip (it's a 2018 model with a Radeon Pro 560X it as I'm a holdout for x86).

    20231205_115201000_iOS.png

    Edited by SolidSurgeTT
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    I will have to live this game via this thread and youtube clips. Some good comments on it this far

     

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    MetalSkulkBane

    Posted (edited)

    Here are my thoughts on the story

    Generally, it's a basic excuse plot that does juuuust enough to engage. Ariem isn't especially complex, she's yet another Tikal/Shahra/Yacker/etc character, but they manage to squeeze drops of characterization. Reverie is colorful and mysterious but has more substance than Lost Hex, I grasp the basics, with enough data to speculate. And Eggman actually comes off as fairly competent.

    Only two bigger-ish gripes.
    1) General length. I could seriously use 2-3 more cutscenes to flesh out a thing or two.
    2) I dislike Rouge new voice and VERY dislike Cream new voice.

    Right, spoiler-ish thing

    Spoiler

    - Sonic wakes up in a faceless voice telling him what to do and informing his friends are safe but in a ghost state. I laughed. I'm really surprised Sonic didn't go "F@#$, again?" No one writing noticed it's very similar to Frontiers?

    - Like I said, world-building is small but satisfying. Reverie is implied to be built by "Creators" and I like speculating who could they be. And I loved that the factory in 2nd has a purpose (turning dream energy in nightmare). But why other 3 levels can't have a single line of description? Honestly, I rrrrreally wish every Sonic level had even the most basic lore-grounding (I look at you, Lost World).

    - Ariem is kinda basic, but her VA is doing a good job. And she made a decent bond with Knuckles (fellow Guardian) and to a smaller degree with Cream and Tails. Kinda wish Amy and especially Rouge got similar treatment.

    - Bosses are great from a visual standpoint (Does anyone else think Guardian Hunter looks like Infinite?) Kinda wish Crab served some purpose when the other 2 have (hunter, factory protector/foreman). Plus, I dig Eggman's evil purple stash before the final battle.

    - I'm curious if Cream fans will like this one. She is the most important Sonic friend here (by tiiiiny margin), her biggest role in like 15 years. And yet... she (and Tails) technically fail in their boss battle. Tails somewhat redeems himself by doing his usual smart guy shtick. Cream doesn't. And then there is that scene during the final battle when Knuckles has to save her. Keep in mind, that this story STARTS with people saving her.

    I would give her something cool to do. And it's not even hard to think what. This place grants wishes to pure-hearted and Eggman kidnaped her for that very reason. I would let her pureness do something.


    Lastly, I know it's much to ask, but I wish this game acknowledged Sonic Shuffle. Maybe Maginary World and Reverie are completely unrelated dream-themed worlds, but it would been much cooler if they were connected. They could at the very least have Sonic mention that previous adventure.
    Shuffle had a bizarre story, but I kinda liked it. Maybe it was just poorly translated, but I found cutscenes to have a weirdly appropriate dream-like feel to them.

    Edited by MetalSkulkBane
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    42 minutes ago, MetalSkulkBane said:

    Lastly, I know it's much to ask, but I wish this game acknowledged Sonic Shuffle. Maybe Maginary World and Reverie are completely unrelated dream-themed worlds, but it would been much cooler if they were connected. They could at the very least have Sonic mention that previous adventure.
    Shuffle had a bizarre story, but I kinda liked it. Maybe it was just poorly translated, but I found cutscenes to have a weirdly appropriate dream-like feel to them.

    Yeah, I feel ya. Maybe Shuffle just felt too obscure for Sega to touch, or maybe they consider it 'Classic Sonic' and thus don't want to address it in 'modern Sonic.' Neither of those are what I'd consider good reasons to not feature any elements of Maginary World in Dream Team, but we got what we got.

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    Does anyone know how to map a Switch Pro Controller to play on a Macbook Pro? They said the game is Controller Supported, but it seems like it might not be for Switch...

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    Just finished the campaign mode, Took me about 3-4 Hours to beat.

    For the record, I was playing this on a 9th Gen iPad with an Xbox Series X controller.

    Overall: I LOVED IT. It Isn't ground-breaking. It doesn't do anything that hasn't been done with Sonic before, but what it does do it does extremely well.

    The game looks amazing for a "Mobile" game and it runs at a smooth 60FPS, though there were a few slowdowns here and there (Including one major one during a Tails Challenge, where the game suddenly decided to turn into a PowerPoint presentation and screw up my run!).

    The controls feel tight and responsive and it's so satisfying getting combos of lock-on attacks on enemies or jumping on springs, for example. Most importantly, it feels like a Sonic game should, Fast-paced, but not too automated (Looking at you Forces!).

    Levels are mostly linier, but just open enough that you could take your time and plan where to go next. Exploration is rewarded here. While there are only 12 levels split across 4 worlds, each level has multiple missions to earn orbs, some of which do change up the level design (Similar to Mario 64 or Sunshine).

    The story is fairly basic, but the characters feel great and everybody gets a chance to shine here (Save for the final boss, but I'll get to that).

    Music is OK, although nothing really stands out except for the intro song.

    Bosses are a bit on the easy side, even the Final boss didn't pose much of a challenge. I personally didn't mind much though, I'm a casual gamer a heart!

    The only real gripes I have are:

    • Rouge's new voice - She sounds way too high-pitched! At times I thought it was Amy speaking.
    • Some of the missions feel VERY frustrating! Particularly the ones where you fly/glide/run though rings! What is this? Superman 64?!
    • Spoiler

      You don't get to play as Tails in the final boss! 😢

    TLDR: This is my new favourite 3D Sonic game. Sega Hardlight should be very proud of what they have accomplished here (even if they got a little help from Apple).

    If you have an Apple Arcade subscription, Download it now! It's not the most in-depth or "meaty" 3D platformer out there, but as far as I'm concerned...

    ...This game was a dream come true!

    Edited by MGA_Gamer
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    Here it is running from my iPhone 14 Pro Max over AirPlay.

    Kinda crappy pic, sorry. The camera on this tablet is hard to make do what I want.

    17018101802367431221774437784658.jpg

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    7 hours ago, MetalSkulkBane said:

    - I'm curious if Cream fans will like this one. She is the most important Sonic friend here (by tiiiiny margin), her biggest role in like 15 years. And yet... she (and Tails) technically fail in their boss battle. Tails somewhat redeems himself by doing his usual smart guy shtick. Cream doesn't. And then there is that scene during the final battle when Knuckles has to save her. Keep in mind, that this story STARTS with people saving her.

    I would give her something cool to do. And it's not even hard to think what. This place grants wishes to pure- hearted and Eggman kidnaped her for that very reason. I would let her pureness do something.

    As one of the more vocal Cream fans on this site... I loved how Dream Team did her 😁

    Spoiler

    Yeah, Cream technically fails her boss fight, but so does Tails if you choose him for the fight. And in my mind, it doesn't really matter: the plot dictated that the "Guardian Hunter" does its thing to disable Ariem, so Cream OR Tails succeeding in disabling the thing would mess with the story, and also deprive Knuckles and Rouge their own boss fight. Granted, you make a good point about Tails redeeming himself with his "smart guy shtick"... But then, Cream and Cheese are ultimately the one to deliver the final blow to Eggman, forcing him back to sleep after kicking him out of the Reverie. So... I consider that a win lol

    That scene in the final battle was definitely fucking stupid, though. You could literally have Cream homing attack a whole bunch of Egg Pawns in a split second in-game, but she and Cheese cower in fear of them in that moment? With Knuckles needing to save her? What the actual fuck -_- The only good thing there is giving Cream a noteworthy interaction with Knuckles, but it doesn't feel worth it.

    Regardless, though, I'm just relieved that Cream is even important to the plot to begin with. Just a few years ago, it felt like Cream was being forgotten; becoming the new Mighty, Ray, and Fang. But this game brings her back in full force, not only having Cream be playable but crucial for the premise! It may not be much, but it sure as fuck is better than what we've been getting before. Which was nothing lol

    Though you do bring up a great point: the Reverie grants the wishes of the pure-hearted, Cream's pure-heartedness should've had a bigger impact on the endgame. Maybe have her be the one to defeat "Nightmare Eggman" instead of Sonic by becoming an angelic kaiju or something. Oh well, I guess. At least what Dream Team's treatment of Cream is better than how IDW is doing her currently.

    Anywho, having beaten Dream Team, I can say this was definitely a very fun experience! There were a few frustrating moments due to the homing attack messing me up, and I wish that the camera's X-axis can be inverted... But the core gameplay is seriously engaging, and I really love how Dream Teasm handles multiple playables: 6 characters, 3 unique mechanics, and only a few zones per act restrict which character you can play as. In most levels, you can switch characters mid-gameplay and it makes exploration so much better. I also definitely felt the "Super Mario Sunshine" inspiration lol Though I couldn't help but be reminded of "A Hat in Time" more, especially with the music.

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    Played through some of the game so far, and it's certainly going past my expectations as an app game! I love how more characters are playable. The graphics, cutscenes, gameplay, all of it really reminds me of Rise Of Lyric. I did enjoy ROL quite of bit even with all the bugs because of the sorta-sandbox style it had in some segments. It let other characters besides Sonic be put to good use and I'm glad Dream Team is doing the same thing. And how the light speed dash is being used feels similar to the enerbeam. 

    The story seems good enough so far, nothing too complex but again for an app game it seems reasonable. Amy's voice is SO much better, it's really growing on me! Rouge's though... yikes. 😬 Cream's is okay. Gotta get used to it, but at least it sounds like a 6 year old, which she is. Love the detail they put with Cheese being animated. You can tell they put a lot of work into this game and I'm super happy with the results. I hope it eventually becomes playable on other platforms so more people can play it. If they were to make a mainstream Sonic game like this, it would be okay with it. They would have to expand on the concepts obviously but the gameplay style and big cast of characters is always welcome in my book.

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    Been playing Dream Team on again off again since launch and I finally got to the end of it tonight. I do feel like I'm saying a bit of a hot take (how true that is, idk), but I honestly found myself bored and forcing myself through it. The more the game goes on, the more the novelty sort of falls thin and it becomes really clear how kinda empty the whole game is.

    The dream worlds concept is shockingly underutilised, with only the first zone, Ego City, and the final boss really taking advantage of the idea. Both Dream Factory and Nightmare Forest are just generic levels that feel like they could be in any other Sonic game, and it doesn't help when the levels are already incredibly repetitive. 

    In terms of gameplay, I'd say the speed and fly characters are generally good. There is aspects of them I don't fully like - Sonic's boost is really quickly used up, and the flight characters lose their momentum a bit too fast for my liking. Gliders on the other hand are awful. The gliding physics feel really bad and are bad to control, and the characters lose so much momentum to the point they drop like a rock. Honestly, it kinda feels like they're pointless since flight characters have a similar lessened fall when their flight runs out and it still doesn't feel as bad and heavy as the glide, where in other games, the characters drop naturally. The camera and homing attack in general can also be really unreliable. 

    The level design IMO is really the thing that hurts the game and makes it feel so boring and repetitive. It really does just feel like you're mainly running down a corridor, then you hit a semi-open area, you search for stuff, and then you move on. Personally, I just found that it's a master of none situation. The corridor design doesn't really get exciting until the final boss where a boost game would keep the speed up, frantic, and have some exciting set pieces, and the open areas aren't really open enough. 

    Part of me feels like it's the fact they're designing for six characters, and it's just designed areas exclusive to their abilities, whereas if every level was designed for a specific character, it could be a lot more fun, but as is, something about the level design just doesn't click with me at all. 

    I'm really disappointed because there's a lot about Dream Team I like. The animation, the writing, most of the voice acting (Cream is kinda bad and Rouge is unbelievably bad), and for the first zone at least, I didn't want the game to end. But I don't know, it feels like once it wears out it's welcome, it really wears it out.

    I also think it's just too much repetition for it's content. Looking for red star rings and blue coins felt annoying with the open areas and how missable they are, on top of there being no reward outside of the statues. Having you do every stage five times to 'complete' it was also a bad move, kinda comparable to Secret Rings' attempts to pad run time.

    Personally, it just didn't jive with me. I hope they give this a second shot because I do think expanded, fixed, and with better level design, there could really be something special. But all of the buzz about Dream Team being the best 3D Sonic game ever, that Sonic Team has lessons to learn, that it's so over because Sonic Team were outdone by a mobile team? Nah, I really don't see it. I'd still rather play SADX, SA2, Unleashed, Gens, or Frontiers than Dream Team in a heartbeat.

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