A skeptic's thoughts on 2.2 (rambling warning)

Golden Shine

Here to bring light!

I'm one of the few who's been openly skeptical about 2.2 potentially breaking SRB2. This is basically an SRB2 remake, and with the urge to push that classic-Sonic feel I was afraid the game would lose it's own identity and just emulate Sonic Mania.

Thankfully, this didn't happen! The game still has the depth and speedy precision platforming that made it so replayable in the first place. Slopes didn't get spammed in like I feared. Almost every single slope was thoughtfully placed in a way that I could use it to my advantage somehow. The leveldesign left plenty of room for both speed and exploration Sonic 3-style, rarely getting too cramped or bogged down. Combining speed with platforming always remained possible no matter how convoluted or gimmick-focused levels got. (I was surprised to see the thok being put to use for ERZ2's emerald token.) The entire time playing 2.2, I just felt relieved SRB2 hadn't lost it's way in pursuit of shiny new aesthetics.

This doesn't mean it's perfect...I don't care for the RVZ ball and ACZ minecart gimmicks, I wish tokens gave rings instead of points(especially in coop where not everyone can get all ring boxes), the horizontal springs were always satan's gift to Classic Sonic and now those demons are in SRB2, and dear god what's up with Fang's bouncing hitbox? ....but those are minor things. It's very impressive how consistently the game's improved in so many ways.

The new coop systems were much needed. The sheer amount of options for checkpoints and level exiting, exitmove, life sharing, ring-respawning, shield-giving, etc are awesome. I'm super glad to have the old special stages back for multiplayer, now upgraded to actually suit coop. No more begging terrible players to not move a muscle. This means everyone can help, unlike in NiGHTS or 1.09.4.

I'm a little disappointed Circuit didn't return, but I guess it would've started the debate again that nobody can outspeed Sonic.

Match and CTF levels seem mostly left as-is, and I'm happy for it. Slopes and extra visual clutter wouldn't do anything for shooters. But the new emerald system is disappointing. We could've just made it a set-timer superform, or let players score points on superforms.(main reason it was op) But an invincibility box for collecting 7 emeralds is just lame.

Almost everyone here seemed purely hyped for 2.2 like it was destined for greatness, so I'm curious if there's others like me who had mixed feelings going into this. If so, how'd it end up? I have yet to unlock/do everything in the game, maybe my opinion will change. But I did do a few early speedruns of the new GreenFlower Zone for those of you feeling competitive!

Here's the ghosts: https://www.mediafire.com/file/aajrhwi8lvokcdi/GFZ-speedrun-GoldenShine.zip/

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