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Old 04-21-2020   #281
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While new players just coming into the game for the first time are a factor to consider, veteran players returning to the game to play the new content or just for the fun of it are also a factor to consider, and shoving their preferred playstyle behind an unlock wall just because of paranoia that new players won't like that playstyle is a turnoff.
I have no sympathy for any returning veteran who bails from this game because the lack of thok for sixty minutes was just too much for them to bear. And it is absolutely no excuse for us to refrain from designing our game correctly.
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Old 04-21-2020   #282
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Can this thread be locked already? It's pretty much going in endless circles at this point.
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Old 04-21-2020   #283
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I think a lot of people are missing the point here - changing sonic's moveset goes far beyond making the game accessible to kids or something. Sonic's ability is too also hard to control for *adults* who are fans of sonic and have been playing games for years. Hell, it's even hard for lots of people who actively enjoy srb2.

Not only that, but thok feels incredibly one dimensional. Lots of the most beloved 3D platformers actually have surprisingly deep signature moves that are super versatile - like mario odyssey's hat toss. Changing sonic's moveset will actually make the game better for expert players, too. Not the ones we already have, the ones SRB2 can attract in the future. The thok is, in my opinion, shallow and makes "optimal play" easily solve-able.

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Can this thread be locked already? It's pretty much going in endless circles at this point.
I think we have an opportunity to turn this thread around and make it productive - it's a discussion we really need to have as a community. Please don't lock it!
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Old 04-21-2020   #284
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Can the drop dash be utilized, and perhaps enhanced, in some ways to work for both new and advanced players?

Let's say the DD is implemented; what if it could scale walls, too?
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Old 04-21-2020   #285
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Can this thread be locked already? It's pretty much going in endless circles at this point.
It's funny to read, though. The veteran doth protest too much, eh.

I'm a veteran as well and, supposing that the devs do go through with giving Metal the thok and turning him into "oldsonic", IMO they can do whatever with Sonic. (i hope it's the jump thrust though, i like that one)
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Old 04-21-2020   #286
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Here's a big problem with trying to replace the thok, something I think nobody is really acknowledging. People are afraid of change. That's a natural reaction, because we're afraid of what we don't know. But sometimes, you need to try something new so that you can grow and improve. Maybe it's time for SRB2 Sonic to curl up in a cocoon and start changing. Yes, cocoons are ugly and weird, but when he comes out, he might turn out to be a beautiful butterfly. Or he might be a weird moth, we don't know, but we have to try something, or else this argument will just keep going on forever.
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Old 04-21-2020   #287
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Honestly, yeah, I think this thread should probably be locked. Not right now, but maybe a few pages later. It's derailing more than I expected it to.
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Old 04-21-2020   #288
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Honestly I'm in favor of a lock too. I've made the points I wanted to make many times over, not to mention submitted a number of various ideas through this thread. The conversation is just going in circles. Even this recent bit about whether or not the thok itself is a (or the) problem is just old rehash of a discussion from earlier in the thread, and most people who have something to add have probably already done so. The thread has served it's purpose, in my opinion at least, and is fading into repetitive redundancy.
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Old 04-21-2020   #289
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Here's a big problem with trying to replace the thok, something I think nobody is really acknowledging. People are afraid of change. That's a natural reaction, because we're afraid of what we don't know. But sometimes, you need to try something new so that you can grow and improve. Maybe it's time for SRB2 Sonic to curl up in a cocoon and start changing. Yes, cocoons are ugly and weird, but when he comes out, he might turn out to be a beautiful butterfly. Or he might be a weird moth, we don't know, but we have to try something, or else this argument will just keep going on forever.
To be clear, if Metal Sonic doesn't become "oldsonic", then I too would be vehemently opposed to removing the thok.

That's kind of the beauty of Metal Sonic gaining Sonic's old moveset. Almost everyone wins except for the people who like Metal's current moveset, which is a fairly small group.
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Old 04-21-2020   #290
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To be clear, if Metal Sonic doesn't become "oldsonic", then I too would be vehemently opposed to removing the thok.

That's kind of the beauty of Metal Sonic gaining Sonic's old moveset. Almost everyone wins except for the people who like Metal's current moveset, which is a fairly small group.
I'm strongly opposed to removing the thok from the game. I love the thok and I think our game probably would not still be active today if it wasn't so fun, considering we built our game around it and only it for a majority of the time this game has existed. I just think it should not be presented to new players from the start. Either it should move to Metal or even a new unlockable character we don't currently have.
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Old 04-21-2020   #291
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I'm strongly opposed to removing the thok from the game. I love the thok and I think our game probably would not still be active today if it wasn't so fun, considering we built our game around it and only it for a majority of the time this game has existed. I just think it should not be presented to new players from the start. Either it should move to Metal or even a new unlockable character we don't currently have.
I'm still opposed to making the thok unlockable, but in regards to the topic of moving it to an unlockable character, what about Espio? Espio is a speedy, ninja type character that suggests "skill" to the player so I can imagine it working thematically for him.
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Old 04-21-2020   #292
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I would say it's worthwhile to keep the thread going for as long as there is interest. Before the idea of locking the thread came up, this thread was almost 100% on topic! Nearly 300 posts all dedicated to discussing, debating, pitching, proposing, theorizing and think-tanking Sonic's ability. That's pretty good, everyone deserves a jolly pat on the back for some A+ message boarding, imo.

The discussion IS a bit circular -- but if you read from page one to here, you do see an evolution of discussion and some interesting thoughts and opinions.

Newer members like myself seem to be joining the board in larger numbers lately due to the 2.2+ upgrade and associated hype on message boards and a few Tubers. A new player who discovers the game, say, 3 months from now, will probably have their own thoughts on the matter.

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Automatic braking does not do anything that the player could not already do manually. It simply automates a process that many players were finding difficult to grasp manually.
This describes the Homing, too, though, don't you see? You can manually jump through an enemy; or you can double-tap jump to jump through the nearest target. It automates a process that many players find difficult to grasp manually!

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Because, as stated many times before, the homing attack does not solve the problem.
How/why is this so certain? I don't get that part. Because it's also been stated many times before (not just by me) that it does help to solve the problem.

It's acknowledged as the most popular request.
It's clear in the Woolie video and the comments that the Homing is missed.
It's my personal feedback through XX hours of testing back and forth, fwiw.

And furthermore, how can we say it doesn't solve the problem, when it hasn't been tried outside of (popular) Mods?

This specific suggestion -- Homing and Thok co-existing in the same moveset -- hasn't been tried at all.

Modern's Boost is the closest to approximating a Thok with Homing but not exactly.

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The homing attack is specifically designed to deal with enemies.
Not just enemies! Any object within the radius. Springs, item boxes. This significantly helps to automate a process that should be manual (targeting your jump for a small hit box) but players struggle with.

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While yes, new players struggle for a bit handling enemies in 3D space initially, the part of the game which causes players trouble as Sonic isn't enemies; it's platforming. While official Sonic games have level design built around the homing attack that allows you to use the homing attack at all times, trivializing platforming, SRB2 does not do so.
This is the part everybody keeps missing -- it's actually because SRB2 is not built with homing in mind that it works better here than the official games.

Had SRB2 been designed with it in mind, then probably tons of aspects would be different to accomodate the move, or challenge it. It's good that it wasn't. It means that the levels work without it; that you don't need it; that it is a bonus power-up for the player to help cheese levels without feeling like a cheat.

The Modern Mod significantly helped me play as Sonic and enjoy the platforming because of the Doublejump/Homing.

Not because of the stomp, or light dash, or boost. It was having the ability to target enemies/boxes/springs, and being able to double jump backwards from an error.

I'd completed a 7 emerald run with Sonic & Tails, but needed Tails to skip some portions; starting a new play-through as solo Sonic was initially so frustrating I figured I was probably done with the game for awhile (stopping around AC or RV). I figured, I'd beaten it twice, as Knuckles and as S&T, and after a few levels with Fang/Amy/Metal didn't feel especially compelled to continue*.

Thankfully, I found the Mod subforum! So when I returned to Classic after enjoying my time with Modern, I was surprised to find I played far better with Classic, and probably better than I would've had I only been playing as Tails/Knuckles/Fang/Amy since their moves are so different.

See, the Modern Mod jump abilities acted as training wheels, so that when I returned to the Vanilla Classic, knowing I was jumping "without a net" this time but also having a clearer feel for how to land those jumps, I was having fun playing as Sonic instead of cursing the game and my hands and this cursed, wretched fate! (Not quite that dramatic but you get the idea).

*(Fun bonus for this particular form of Sonic mania is you can literally track the evolution of my thought process on this in full, just through my post history here; also available now in MtFC Archives Vol. 3 -- Ed.)

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In the absence of enemies, the homing attack is completely useless for platforming and therefore does not solve the core issue here.
In the absence of enemies, the homing attack in Sonic Adventure 1/2 is essentially the Thok -- it's a straight dash forward mid-air. (And the homing attack actually stinks out loud in the Adventure games, too, compared to the Modern Mod.)

So with Only Thok, it's a Sonic 3D adventure game with more enemies and more platforming challenges than all of the official games combined, but the player is equipped with fewer abilities. No wonder it's hard and off-putting to new players!

The ideal homing/double jump is present in the Modern Mod (a tweaked and refined version of the Sonic Colors moves) — but it doesn't have the Thok and it should (which, again, is fun exactly how it is, for what it is — an unmodulated mid-air speed boost forward that doesn't need to be removed or changed, simply supplemented). By themselves, neither Homing nor Thok are quite right, but taken together, it'd be like peanut butter and chocolate.

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The homing attack is a completely different gameplay style from SRB2. It is not possible to input anything right now that emulates the homing attack without the attraction shield. There is a major difference between automating a process you could already do manually and automating something so significantly that the original gameplay is removed.
To be clear, the Homing mechanic that I'm advocating for specifically is the one from the Modern mod, aka the Colors moveset, but stripped of the other abilities and replaced with Thok. It's this:
  • Jump = Super Sonic Spin Attack
  • Spin = Roll
  • Hold Spin = Spin Dash
  • Jump x2 = Double jump from Sonic Colors; Homing if there's a target
  • Jump x3 = Homing chain if applicable; if not, then mini-thok forward thrust
  • Jump, then Spin = Thok (shield overrides when equipped; alternatively shield could override jumpx2 instead but idk)

Two button gameplay, as always; shields are variables, as always. Thok is a core part of Sonic's moveset, and leaves Homing as both a default and also entirely optional for skilled players who don't need to double-tap jump if they don't want to. (Again, all of my suggestions are based around Thok + Homing together, not one or the other)

I know you like Double Jump, and also don't want Thok removed, so the only gulf is about Homing and chaining*, and opening up "Jump, Spin" beyond just shields.

Vanilla/base "Jump Spin" abilities are the key, at least for the star characters who should be overpowered. And really, it's just taking the idea from Adventure, which acknowledged if you have to have a separate button for "rolling" since it can no longer be "Down" then Sonic can no longer be a "1 button game" but must become a 2 button game in 3D.

Since SRB2 makes that same concession for 2 buttons, why should this game be having less fun with the possible combinations of that?

"Thok is shooting Sonic like a gun," right? I like that description Unknownlight posted iirc, though he may've been quoting somebody else. Continuing that analogy — Thok is like a cannon/shotgun, and Homing is pistol with auto-aim. Both fun, and I strongly suspect, better when together than each on their own.

(Continuing with the idea of taking what works from official Sonic, I think Knuckles ought to have vanilla "Jump, Spin" abilities too, which is just his SA2 moveset, but now in SRB2, a game that's actually good and fun to explore with a camera you can control.

Jump x 2 = Glide / climb
Spin = Punch
Spin x 3 = Punch punch uppercut
Jump, then Spin = Downward Drill, which shields override

Makes him an even more interesting and unique character beyond glide/climb/walls/lowerjump.)

*Re: homing chaining

Here's why it's good, actually — again, this is assuming no changes at all to the level / enemy design present in 2.2 — it opens up a new unique path for Sonic in Pinball Form by enabling the player to go through the level mostly in Ball Form, paved by Homing Chaining enemies and objects, and rolling and Thokking.

It's an aerial path inherently very different from aerial paths by Tails or Knuckles, as they move through the air and especially in relation to enemies much differently. It's a wholly unique extra-dimensional path offered to Sonic only, while also making him the easiest and most overpowered character -- which is true to both the series mythos and design ethos.

Playing only as Sonic, the player has the choice of different pathways L/R/U/D built into the level design on the ground/running paths, and those same pathways, but more through the air, trying to stay in Ball Form as much as possible with homing and thokking and rolling, which is not as feasible with Only Thok/Roll/Spin Dash.

Sonic is a Pinball Platformer... the thrill is in the speed and lighting up the scoreboard and finding secret paths and making it look cool. Chaining homing attacks on Crawlas in GF2 and then Thokking forward into the level is one example of the game achieving that. The skilled player can chain bops on Crawlas without the homing attack, of course -- it's just that homing enables the player with an extra bumper for 3D accuracy.

Last edited by Moose the Fat Cat; 04-21-2020 at 06:55 AM.
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Old 04-21-2020   #293
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You have suggested making Sonic simpler for new players by giving him four different aerial moves.
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Old 04-21-2020   #294
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Ha, thanks, great. No, not "simpler," I wouldn't say that's the suggestion. The aim is for better, as in more intuitive.

It's a simple solution, but it's not "simpler" in the sense of fewer moves. Incidentally, it's still far fewer moves than any official Sonic 3D game. It's also not adding extra buttons, but utilizing what's there and building it up with existing material.

It would be a simpler experience for the new player, maybe it could be put like that. It's oddly un-intuitive for "Jump Spin" to only be what activates the shield powers, if that combination is not otherwise used. Once you try "Jump Spin" and see it does nothing, what in the game design tells the player try that combination again with a shield? In S3K, the shield over-rides Sonic's double jump. Shouldn't the shield then disable the Thok?

I understand why it doesn't in SRB2. You want to allow Tails, etc, to use shield powers and their flight, despite being a divergence from S3K. So, again, if the design is already incorporating two-button gameplay... why try to pretend it's one button? Why not enable "Jump Spin" as a vanilla ability for the star characters?

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Old 04-21-2020   #295
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Not "simpler," I wouldn't say that's the suggestion. The aim is for better, as in more intuitive.

It's a simple solution, but it's not "simpler" in the sense of fewer moves. Incidentally, it's still far fewer moves than any official Sonic 3D game. It's also not adding extra buttons, but utilizing what's there and building it up.

It would be a simpler experience for the new player, maybe it could be put like that. It's oddly un-intuitive for "Jump Spin" to only be what activates the shield powers, if that combination is not otherwise used. Once you try "Jump Spin" and see it does nothing, what in the game design tells the player try that combination again with a shield?
Abilities that conflict with shield abilities should generally (as opposed to strictly) be avoided, as you will end up in a position in which a player has to choose whether to grab the shield or not based on whether it's worth replacing one of their air abilities with. This complicates things, as shields are already strategically placed in levels in which they are meant to be useful. This wouldn't be too big of a problem for veterans, the shields are generally a lot more optional for veterans since the levels aren't designed around the shield abilities being mandatory. However, when the entire point of adding a new air ability mapped to spin is to assist new players, forcing them to consider whether grabbing a shield is worth it every time they encounter one could slow down the gameplay more than some are comfortable with or cause them to take risks they shouldn't be taking for their skill level, leading to the game feeling harder for them than it should be.

This is one of the big reasons I have been advocating for a three button system, it allows for expansions to movesets without conflictions like this, so these kinds of choices end up not needing to be made. SRB2 uses some of the fewest buttons out of a 3D platformer I have seen in a long time, regardless of sub-genre. Whether it be more linear titles such as the original Crash trilogy or the Dreamcast/Modern Era Sonic games, or Mario 64-likes such as the Spyro Trilogy or A Hat in Time, pretty much everything makes use of significantly more than a mere 2 buttons aside from movement without complicating things too much for new players or slowing the gameplay down to learn the controls. Even Mario 64 itself is just kinda like "Here's Mario, you are in control of him. Go have fun." aside from the signs that most players ignore anyway. The player is encouraged to learn the controls at their own pace as they play, rather than dedicated tutorial segments that slow the gameplay down to a snails pace just to learn one ability.
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Old 04-21-2020   #296
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Wait a minute, you don't like veterans? I mean Sega did that too when they changed Sonic in the modern era to appeal to the younger audience (to the detriment of players from the Genesis day).


Changing Sonic's Thock would be a mistake honestly, if it ain't broke don't try fixing it (as I said earlier in this thread).


Anyway I'm also in for the lock.
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Old 04-21-2020   #297
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I'd be fine with Thok being moved to Metal Sonic, If that's what it takes to make the game more accessible and bring more people in I'm all for it.
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Old 04-21-2020   #298
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I'd be fine with Thok being moved to Metal Sonic, If that's what it takes to make the game more accessible and bring more people in I'm all for it.
Tails being the "easy mode" of the game (like in Sonic 3) already makes the game accessible...
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Old 04-21-2020   #299
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Tails being the "easy mode" of the game (like in Sonic 3) already makes the game accessible...
Well a new player is surely not going to pick Tails as their first character, they come for a Sonic game so naturally you'd expect them to start with Sonic as their first character, He's like a lead protagonist so it's common sense that that's what they'll go with for their first playthrough....
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Old 04-21-2020   #300
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[lots of text]
Do you really think the homing attack or related abilities haven't already been extensively tested by dev before they decided that ability wouldn't work out in SRB2? Though the SRB2 dev team is very open to suggestions, there's a clear reason why some very obvious suggestions haven't been implemented yet. It's a reason the attraction shield's ability isn't quite the same as the homing attack, rather an ability with roughly the same premise that preserves your momentum but cannot be chained. I do know that dev has at least been considering revising the attraction shield's ability, but I can't imagine it'll be much closer to the homing attack than it currently is.

(I know I said I wanted this thread to be locked, but I still feel the need to state this obvious fact.)
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