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Old 05-17-2020   #41
Seaball
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I agree with Cookie on the challenge stages. While Azure Temple feels fine without sloping and is one hell of an awesome challenge, Aerial Garden really doesn't hold up anymore. Even with the new enemies it's much more stale now that it used to be. Mostly because the initial awe of it being a super big stage doesn't mean much now that we have CEZ2, which barely reaches the linedef limit in Zone Builder.

That being said, I'm all for an Aerial Garden revamp.
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Old 2 Weeks Ago   #42
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Unknownlight View Post
Act 1: Rescue Amy.
  • Greenflower
  • Techno Hill
  • Castle Eggman
The theme of the levels is starting in nature and progressing further and further into Eggman's territory.

Act 2: Get something / destroy something at the heart of a volcano
  • Deep Sea
  • Arid Canyon
  • Red Volcano
Again, we get to end on a climatic "final level", in this case the classic lava level. I haven't thought of what the story goal would be, but the idea is similar to Lord of the Rings-ish "get to the volcano to do something".

The theming of this set of levels is the elements. You've got your water, ground, and fire levels.

Act 3: Defeat Eggman
  • Dark City
  • Grand Eggship
  • Egg Rock
The theme of this is "ascension". Start in a city, move to the sky, then move into space.
...you know, I actually like this idea a bit. I mean, I don't think there needs to be too much emphasis on story, but when you put it that way, it really does kinda work thematically. That said, I dunno how you would get from DSZ to ACZ in a feasible way(if we're bringing any kind of sense of overarching narrative into this, I mean.)
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Old 1 Week Ago   #43
Twins'R'Awesome
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Main Campaign:
Spoiler:


Tutorial
I have no opinions on this except it does a decent enough job of explaining the controls for this game I guess.

Greenflower
An excellent introduction into an already pretty good game. Its playground-esque design gives plenty of opportunities to let the player mess around with the controls and get into the feel of gameplay. I especially like how the 2nd act opens up and gives the player a sense of speed and freedom.

Techno Hill
I have nothing bad to say about this. Open, freeflowing, good gimmicks, multiple pathways, secrets high and low, impressive sense of scale in the second act, what more needs to be said?

Deep Sea
Similarly fantastic, there's so many ways you could go in this stage and while they all lead to the same goal, each path feels fresh and exploratory, interconnects with one another at times, and is still freeflowing and good.
The only problem I have with it is that some areas need more bubbles and that's about it.

Castle Eggman
If you're a newcomer, this level is a bitch-slap and a half. This level harbors a deceptively high difficulty spike. There's spikes everywhere, bottomless pits, and sudden precision platforming. If this game wants a better difficulty curve, this level NEEDS to be nerfed in terms of difficulty; Spikes need to be toned down, or moved to better positions, and the platforming and enemy placement similarly needs to be nerfed. The bridge at the end of act 1 is a good example of this, every newcomer dies repeatedly to this section, and it's hard to not notice why, the spike placement is especially bad in this part, I've seen this part being compared, level-design wise, to Sonic World (the fangame that's infamous for its level design randomly plastering hazards everywhere, hmmmmmmmmmmm)
Otherwise, if you're a pro, this level is really good. It's sense of scale, verticality, and openness is extremely impressive and nice. I especially love flinging myself around in act 1. The amount of alternative paths (mostly in act 2) is astounding; I can never get old of this level, it's clearly one of 2.2's best, despite its performance issues.

Arid Canyon
This one, in terms of difficulty, is a nearly perfect mid-point, where things get hectic, but not too dangerous...........yet. It continues 2.2s trend of making vast, open levels with tons of alternative paths, secrets, and freeflowing level design. I especially like how, in act 1, a lot of the pathways loop back in to a central area, making you truly feel like you're traversing a tall canyon. The minecarts in act 2 are especially a nice change of pace, giving the level a bit of variety without going too overboard and gimmick with its uhhhhhhhh gimmicks.
My only complaint is that the badniks are kind of annoying to hit/dodge, otherwise, great level.

Red Volcano
This level is already a huge step up from the previous version, especially since the platforms were made bigger, the level more open, and the difficulty less awkward and jank. I especially like how each of the do-or-die sections were given alternative paths. However, the level still needs refinement.
I'm quite leery about the rings dissipating in lava, I can understand this to be an anti-cheese mechanic, but then again, people will come play this expecting classic sonic gimmicks/quirks from the get-go, and seeing the rings disappear like that when they didn't do that in the classics is uhhhhhhhhhhhh weird.
The enemies are mostly good, except the pterodactyl. It's zero-threshold dive comes out of nowhere, with the only indication being the SCREEEEE and the fact that they hover around perilous places beforehand. You can mash jump to escape their grasp and steer yourself back to safety, but there isn't any good indication that you could do that, leading to newcomers getting grabbed and then getting dropped into the f i r e w a t e r to kiss their rings goodbye. Speaking of newcomers, this level also represents a large difficulty spike, nerfing the difficulty on this level by a medium-small bit would definitely help, especially once the two remaining zones gets put in to fill the challenge quota this campaign needs.

Egg Rock
It's outdated, I know, but I'm gonna bitch about it regardless >:^( Every single gimmick, hazard, and idea this stage introduces each has potential, the problem is, none of that potential is fleshed out. Every single hazard, gimmick, and idea is woefully undercooked. No challenge introduces itself properly, so the player gets confused and dies. No gimmick fleshes itself out, so the player gets underwhelmed and dies. No idea is given the proper screentime, so the player forgets about it and dies. Now that I think about it, the player dies here alot, don't they. The obnoxious difficulty spike doesn't help either. I like it in a masochistic sense, but its clear that this level needs to be remade. As, in its current state, feels like a bunch of concept maps strung together haphazardly to make a "level"

Metal Sonic
I actually really like this boss fight. The race does a decent enough job of being this final bastion of pure skill and difficulty, but leaves a lot to be desired. The actual boss fight, while still better than its incarnation in 2.1, still needs to be refined. The part where you have to get close to it feels incredibly awkward, especially close to the edges of the arena, I prefer there be a different way to expose the boss other than to invade its personal space.

Brak Eggman

To defeat
the cybereggman
hit it
until it dies

But first, you have to lure it into some toxic goo, which never felt right and always killed the pace of the boss fight. Maybe make it vulnerable all the time, give it more hit points, as well as edit the arena to include many line-of-sight breaks, and maybe, just maybe, we could have a REAL cybereggman boss fight. DOOM-style~


Challenge Stages:
Spoiler:


Haunted Heights
This is an excellent level. It restores and continues the open, freeflowing design of the main campaign except its actually challenging, sometimes difficult without being unfair or cheap. The distinct lack of bottomless pits during certain sections certainly helps with that too.
The only problem I have with it is that it's poorly optimized in some sections (particularly the beginning), otherwise, a great level.

Aerial Garden
Ah, to be outdated past its prime :^D. After having played the Mystic Realm, it's pretty clear that this level works better when split in chunks rather than one zone to rule them all. The precision platforming is actually pretty good and challenging (with some exception), but doesn't variate itself enough to be interesting for its whole runtime. ALL ~8 MINUTES OF IT. The bee enemies at least are well designed enough, although I'm kinda leery about them, especially since they were designed to be a "enjoyable (?)" variant of the jetty-syn spam from the early days.

Azure Temple
There is a difference between incompetent design, and deliberate evil. This level bounces back-and-forth between those things. Some rooms are well designed to the point where the underwater floatiness adds to the gameplay while others do not mesh well with srb2's camera and gameplay. The fan room in particular is a good example of this. You can't look down to gage where you are vertically well-enough, with the only indication being the fans that boost you upwards, and even then, getting through that room safely is a game of awkwardly backpedaling and boosting your momentum to get yourself in the general area of the fan. It's just not a good time. At least the gargoyle puzzle area was cool :>.



Bonus Stages:

Spoiler:


Frozen Hillside
Okay enough level I guess. Nothing's particularly wrong with it and its heavy snow gimmick is okay enough I guess. It's still pretty open and full of secrets, not as open OR as filled with as many secrets as the main campaign tho. Something tells me, this would've been more highly praised/unique in the v2.0 days or somethin.

Forest Fortress
Not only a beta version of CEZ1, but a damn good level at that. Definitely continues the 2.2 trend of open, multiple pathways, and freeflowing design, except it doesn't have the jaw-dropping verticality of current CEZ1. Ya know, I think this level flows better in terms of difficulty from DSZ. It definitely gets more intense, but nothing too crazy compared to the last zone, if the hazards get moved, I'd rather it gets moved in reference to this as spike placement makes a lot more sense here.

Techno Legacy
tbh If you're gonna do this, I prefer you go the whole mile instead of just a single step. I would've loved to go through SRB2's earlier designs as an unlockable, and I mean EVERY level's earlier designs instead of just THZ2, it would've made more sense as an unlockable than this disappointment....
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Old 1 Week Ago   #44
ClassicNC
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GFZ1 7/10
GFZ, as a whole, is a great tutorial level. The level is short, but, in a way, timeless. The music has been remixed! Woo! Great level, great music, Music/10

GFZ2 8/10
GFZ2 is awesome. Nuff said. It's a big level, but not really, but really, but not really! Oh, and the music. Must I say more?

GFZ3 6/10
Boss battle. Uh... cool.

THZ1 6/10
Banger. Banger, banger, B A N G E R. Oh wait, that's the music. The level? Cool, I guess.

THZ2 8/10
YO THIS SHIT IS FIRE! The level design? Great. The music? Give it to me. It's great.

THZ3 5/10
Uh... boss battle cool.

DSZ1 5/10
Yo they fixed DSZ. It's better now.

DSZ2 6/10
This is a good act. It has a lot of stopping to push a button or something. But the stop and go parts don't last too long, which is good.

DSZ3 4/10
mehhhhhh

CEZ1 5/10
Ok stage, online PTSD. This stage is big big b i g.

CEZ2 4/10
My PC knows it's fucked when I get to CEZ2.

CEZ3 no/10
God, I hate this boss. It's a good idea, but it honestly sorta sucks. I don't like it.

ACZ1 8/10
ARID CANYON ZONE

ACZ2 9/10
A R I D C A N Y O N Z O N E

Fang 7/10
Kinda iffy, but pretty neat overall.

RVZ 6/10
Fang: how about fuck you

ERZ1 7/10
I LIKE this level I LIKE it. Oh and the music is a banger, especially the piano solo.

ERZ2 7/10
Just as good as the first act.

BCZ1 HUE/10
HUE HUEHUE HUE, HUEHUE HUE, HUE HUE

BCZ2 H U E/10
H U E H U E H U E H U E , H U E H U E H U E , H U E H U E

BCZ3 brak/10
Meh

Yeah, that's all, folks
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Last edited by ClassicNC; 1 Week Ago at 03:53 PM.
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Old 1 Week Ago   #45
Jonster
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Well, time to rate some levels!!!111!111!!! (Single player)
RANK S:
GFZ2: Hey bro wanna meet my GF? yeah sure. Who is it? GF2.
ACZ2: OH MY GOD THIS IS SO GOOOOOOOOOOOOOD
ERZ2: Bro I love this stage pls help me.

RANK A:
GFZ1: Very naisu tutorial level. Very fun, and musek bee great.
DPZ2: How to make a very great water level 101.
CEZ1: Very well designed and fun. Also the end of the level be like H-H-HURRY UP!
BCZ1: HUE HUE HUE THIS IS AWESOME.

RANK B
THZ1: Pretty nice. A very good example of branching paths.
DPZ1: Look Gary! A good water level!
DPB: How a human being makes 2.1's shitty DP boss legitimately enjoyable is beyond me.
ERZ1: When you are a person who has beat the game WAY to many times, this stage becomes quite fun.
BCZ2: Hey, that's pretty good!

RANK C:
THB: Fun. That's all I got to say. Fun.
ACZ1: Kind of a guilty pleassure.
GFB: Eeh.
That final level I don't know the name of: Very nice. Brak eggman is definitely a pretty good challenge. Very poorly paced tho.
ACB: OK I guess.

RANK D:
THZ2: A little labyrinth-e, but still quite ok.
EZ2: Eeh for single, HORRIBLE for online.
ERB: Very eeh. I can definitely see why it was scrapped.


RANK E:
CEB: God why.
RVZ1: No. Just no.


Aaaaand that's my ranking!
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Old 1 Week Ago   #46
cookiefonster
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Twins'R'Awesome View Post
l
I'm quite leery about the rings dissipating in lava, I can understand this to be an anti-cheese mechanic, but then again, people will come play this expecting classic sonic gimmicks/quirks from the get-go, and seeing the rings disappear like that when they didn't do that in the classics is uhhhhhhhhhhhh weird.
Though lava destroying rings certainly threw me off at first, I think it makes sense because if lava didn't destroy rings, it would be functionally identical to other damaging floors like the Castle Eggman brambles. Lava destroying rings also makes sense with the game's difficulty scale. Consider the following damaging floors, listed chronologically by when they occur in-game:
  • Techno Hill electric floors - damaging unless you have an attraction shield or are invincible, both of which are easy to come by
  • Castle Eggman brambles - damaging unless you are invincible, which is a bit more difficult to come by
  • Red Volcano lava - damaging AND destroys your rings unless you have an elemental shield or are invincible, both of which are difficult to come by
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