Unlicenced Lawyer: Sonic's Buddies

Thanks, sonicthehedgehogbg, for this image. You forgot Fang the Sniper.

So, Sonic's been  a topic lately. What, with the whole 2 new Sonic games

announced.

But there's something I noticed on the trailer to Sonic Mania, the

throwbackies of throwbacks who couldn't  be more of a throwback if it

actually zapped us into 7 year olds all over again: The cast.


The trailer boasts 3 playable characters: Sonic(yeah, no duh), Tails and

Knuckles. Which, while seemingly an offhand remark about the nature of

this game, I interpret it another way.

You see, for the longest time there's been a consensus among many: That

Sonic sucks because there's just too many characters. Somewhere after

Sonic and Knuckles, Sega went overboard with Sonic's friends and

frenemies, when they should have stuck with Sonic.

To me, this is their way of saying "We learned."

However, I must say that that people, even if they don't realize it, don't

hate Sonic's friends at all.

How did we first play as Tails? Well let's take a look.



Did you notice it? The stage played exactly as the normal Sonic 2 stage,

but now you are Tails. You run from left to right, collect rings and fight

a boss. They later gave Tails the ability to fly.


Tails still collects rings while running from left of the screen to right,

but now has abilities that open different  gameplay options.

What about Knuckles? Well, Knuckles is the same. 


Knuckles can glide and

climb, but other wise it's still the same gameplay, same speed same

everything. In fact, playing as Sonic felt kind of vanilla, now.





Comparatively, this is the first time you played as Amy in a mainline

Sonic Series.
Amy's gameplay is kind of survival horror, but also not any damn good.

Even compared to the 3D Sonic action of the same game...


It's a departure. In a way, you kind of have to admire that Sega tried to

innovate on it's most popular franchise, but it...fucking blew up on their

face several times.

Here's our introduction to Big the Cat.

If such a thing  as an  opposite to "run really fast, avoid enemies and

collect rings" exists, it's probably "sit still and fish." Big could be played by Robert Downey Junior and you still wouldn't like him after that. Although...
I fucked the formatting and can
Feel true fear.




So obviously by Sonic Heroes everybody "hated" Sonic's allies, and wanted

to clear them away. Who does the Sonic fandom like from those years,

though?


Meanwhile, in portable land, Sonic's supporting cast had new additions

like Blaze The Cat and Cream The Rabbit.

Eventually, Sega tried to put the thing by making Sonic The Hedgehog, a

reboot that focused exclusively on Sonic.

And...and Shadow, naturally.

And they had some left over telekinesis game engine, so they put in Silver

the Hedgehog from the same alternate dimension Blaze is.

Wow, way to miss the point of rebooting something. That's like if Batman Begins was nothing but Jim Carrey rubbing Batman's bat nipples.

So to recap: It is my belief that the hate for Sonic's friends is a

symptom of Sega's  failed gameplay experiments being used on new

characters. If Big The Cat had been playable in Sonic and Knuckles, maybe

they'd be boasting 4 characters instead of 3 in Sonic Mania. The same trouble with failed experimental gameplay also occurred with the older characters and Sonic himself, but nobody blamed the characters because we'd seen them work at some point.

I think Sega SHOULD give these characters a chance again in the future.

Not all of them at the same time, obviously.  I'm not even saying they aren't... well, hard to like. Just...if you can make a good

Sonic game and make their gameplay stick closely to...Sonic, I don't care

if you put in Bark The Polar Bear, Sticks the Badger, Rotor the Warlus, or Ray The Flying Squirrel.





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