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ROSS’S GAME DUNGEON: SONIC HEROES

New Game Dungeon! This took way, way longer than it was supposed to. The original plan was to have this be under 20 minutes released last month. Instead, the game hit me pretty hard so I just didn’t want to leave so much out. Anyway, it’s finally done and I’m pretty happy with it, though I’m really going to have to go back to shorter episodes for a while. I think I figured out the source of some of my problems in the game since I made it, but not all of them.

On another note, I discovered a bug in Premiere hours ago, where it simply interpreted FRAPS footage improperly. It actually caused stalled frames and the timing to change. This came as a bit of a shock as I didn’t notice it until very late in the process. Re-encoding into another lossless codec solved the problem, but I wasn’t going to do that for 1.5TB of footage (the gameplay was recorded losslessly) without delaying the video another day at least. I solved the most egregious problems, but it’s possible there are some small problems left in there that I missed. I can release one of the problematic clips for testing if people are interested, though I should see if I can chop it without re-encoding as it’s about 30GB on its own. For anyone critical of fraps, feel free to recommend software for recording DirectX 5-8 content with hardware antialiasing enabled (it may not behave how you think).

Freeman’s Mind next! Should come much faster!

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8 hours ago, Ross Scott said:

I noticed there were a lot of wrong guesses, I wanted to keep it a surprise.  Sonic Heroes has that blend that can make for interesting episodes.  It really is a game that stands out in my memory.

honestly, there was a part of me that was thinking you were just going to cover some games that were a part of SAGE (the Sonic Amateur Games Expo), because at the time you were posting about the episode on twitter, SAGE was around the corner.

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16 hours ago, MrDowntempo said:

regarding Tails' tails. My theory is they're connected to his behind with a ball joint, like your arm in your shoulder.

Uh... I'm pretty sure no mammal on Earth has joints that allow things like this:

Come the full moon, the bat flies whose boiling blood shall stem the tide.

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13 minutes ago, ScumCoder said:

Uh... I'm pretty sure no mammal on Earth has joints that allow things like this:

According to all known laws of nature, no, but a quick wiki-skim shows that the concept isn't entirely unheard of, but appears to mostly exist on a microscopic level when it exists at all (wiki). The closest thing to Tails' tails would appear to be Flagellum and I've attached an image from the wiki for reference, the prokaryotic flagellum definitively looks like it could emulate Tails' tails. (wiki).

 

image.thumb.png.3bbdf0053d904c1cf2e1a181db3c3d87.png

Edited by ThatOneDraffan (see edit history)

ISTP-T | Aspiring Blind AF Pilot | Student Programmer

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14 minutes ago, ThatOneDraffan said:
 

I know that microscopic creatures have all kinds of weird mechanical systems (even insects can have freaking gears in their legs). That's why I specifically mentioned "mammals".

Come the full moon, the bat flies whose boiling blood shall stem the tide.

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4 hours ago, RaTcHeT302 said:

those loading times are not worth it, plus the game is a god damn eye sore, somehow sonic heroes looks BETTER than a "next gen" game

 

sonic 2006 is not worth it

Luckily people have ported most if not all of the maps for it, Unleashed, and more to Sonic Generations on PC. That way you can experience the nice level design without the glaring flaws.

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8 hours ago, SomethingOther said:

Yo @Ross Scott, I'm real happy for 'ya and imma let you finish, but The Geek Critique already created the best Sonic Heroes review of all time!*


...But in all seriousness, as something of a Sonic Cultist myself (but also a general game player who's played good games in general): In regards to the camera jerking, the automated sections sometimes not working correctly, not being able to judge 3D space in the levels, homing attack not working correctly, that one section in BINGO Highway, the issues pulling the switch in Final Fortress, rail switching not working sometimes, completely falling off a cliff, etc. ... It's not just you not being a Sonic fan or having Gaming Dementia. I can tell you right now: The game is rather glitchy and overall just... kinda sucks. And despite you playing the PC version, these issues were there even on the original console versions; given that I played the Gamecube version wayback as a kid and ran into most of those same problems as well. (I even had to do that exact Tails trick you pulled to get through that final giant laser in Final Fortress.) So you probably should've given this your "Love & Hate" award.

* I'd actually really recommend you watch TGC's reviews/retrospectives on Adventure 1, 2 (Battle), Sonic '06 and Shadow whenever you get the chance, Ross. They kinda give you an idea of what happened during the "Adventure Era" of the Sonic series development-wise.

 

Because of this comment I've been watching his reviews all day. I quite enjoy his breakdowns but wow is he harsh on Heroes. I'd heard nothing about this game before yesterday. Ross made me love it, now I don't know what to think.

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3 minutes ago, steviewonder322 said:

Luckily people have ported most if not all of the maps for it, Unleashed, and more to Sonic Generations on PC. That way you can experience the nice level design without the glaring flaws.

Honestly, while I do love the Unleashed Project for Generations, I still prefer playing the Unleashed day levels in Unleashed

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31 minutes ago, steviewonder322 said:

Because of this comment I've been watching his reviews all day. I quite enjoy his breakdowns but wow is he harsh on Heroes. I'd heard nothing about this game before yesterday. Ross made me love it, now I don't know what to think.

I kinda get where TGC's coming from when it comes to Heroes, tbqh. I myself kinda struggled with liking Heroes (and indeed, other games such as Shadow the Hedgehog); albeit for me it was less because of the new action-ish gameplay and team mechanic (even if the two were rather subpar and could've used tweaking/added more "Sonic-y" elements) and more due to the many, many bugs and glitches I came across with where stuff just. Wouldn't. Work properly. (This was especially an issue in another game of Sonic Team's, Billy Hatcher and the Giant Egg.)

 

Also, I'd generally like people to try to form their own opinions instead of trying to take others' opinions at face value.

Edited by SomethingOther (see edit history)

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34 minutes ago, steviewonder322 said:

Luckily people have ported most if not all of the maps for it, Unleashed, and more to Sonic Generations on PC. That way you can experience the nice level design without the glaring flaws.

You... do know there's an unofficial Sonic 06 PC "remake"/"remaster" called "P-06" that attempts to fix the game as best as it can, right? I feel that's better than just grafting 06 (Adventure-esque gameplay) onto a different gameplay style (Boost (Unleashed, Colors, Generations) gameplay).

Edited by SomethingOther (see edit history)

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Hi Ross, got a quick question for you...

 

Did you play Sonic Heroes with a keyboard? I had a hard time, particularly in that stupid Haunted Mansion "gauntlet" bullshit.

 

However, later I plugged in a 360 controller and that section was extremely easy for me.

 

My theory is that a lot of the jumping/homing logic has something to do with the stick direction, and the arrow keys give very imprecise input.

Edited by matt_j (see edit history)

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10 hours ago, RaTcHeT302 said:

i would find it pretty challenging to land a plane in the middle of a canyon or in the middle of space, without dying

also the sonic world is not the real world, we can't just apply earth style geography logic to a videogame mostly set in mid air lol

 

the plane is mostly there to make tails look less useless than he is and, to look cool in the cutscenes, otherwise the rest is just your usual videogame logic lol

 

anyway i just noticed that the hud is always in 4:3 mode and it kinda pisses me off LOL, but i blame the developers for not thinking ahead of time, they could've anchored the hud differently if they wanted to, there was no need for them to be this lazy, but... eh, whatever

 

Yx1LnXN.png

 

 

"You don't get to bring friends."

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OK, this left me with a lot of things to talk about, so going down the list:

 

First off, I didn't even know this game existed. I mean, I had heard the name in passing, but I never knew anything about it, including when it came out. I never realized there even was a console Sonic game made between Adventure 2 and 2006, which I'd heard people nickname "Sonic Adventure 3". So I wonder what that makes this.

 

You mentioned the game occasionally continuing to accept input during what's supposed to be a scripted sequence. 2006 had that problem too, in a big way, and it's interesting to learn that it was an ongoing issue that Sonic Team struggled with. Same with camera changes that send you flying off in a direction that was correct before the camera changed. Crisis City was especially bad with that. I'm interested in hearing from people who worked on other platformers and what they did to get around this issue. My theory is that you'd want to not just temporarily ignore the inputs and let the character coast on momentum, but then continue ignoring the input until the stick is shifted to a significantly different angle, similar to how "flick stick" differentiates a flick from a turn.

 

On skyboxes: This is cheap, but if nothing else works, you might consider upscaling them and then running them through a lens blur filter, to hide the crust and make it look like the product of limited depth of field?

 

By the way, what control scheme were you playing this with? The HUD suggests the existence of a Z button, which I've never seen on any controller other than the GameCube. And I feel like the GameCube version would have made X and Y actually look like the kidney bean shapes that it had.

 

On the subject of Tails flying: Physics violations of the attachment points aside, can we talk about how that's just not how helicopters work? Seriously, there's a reason they have a sideways propeller on the tail that's always spinning: because otherwise, the whole helicopter would be. You can also get around this by having two or more rotors that spin in opposite directions, like Chinooks and quadcopters. The turret drones in BioShock have two opposing rotors mounted on the same stalk, which might be possible if you had one post inside a hollow one separated by bearings. Someone'll have to check the engineering on that one.

 

On Shadow: I think he would work better if they intentionally wrote him as someone who's trying too hard to be cool. And maybe played up the rivalry with Sonic more—basically making him a Gary Oak with delusions of gothhood. Dark Pit in Kid Icarus: Uprising is a good example of how that dynamic could work, and I think one of the writers for that game said they specifically were trying to parody Shadow.

 

And finally, the True Ending: That's an insane amount of hoops to jump through to unlock that looks like a significant amount of content. People complained about Sonic 2006 making you play through all three stories to reach the end chapter, but at least the gameplay was different enough that you're not just playing the same game three times, there's a story that unfolds as you play from different perspectives, and

21 hours ago, Ross Scott said:

For anyone critical of fraps, feel free to recommend software for recording DirectX 5-8 content with hardware antialiasing enabled (it may not behave how you think).

I take it this is your way of saying you tried OBS and it has problems?

9 hours ago, RaTcHeT302 said:

that's not an excuse, these guys are just lazy programmers, i have plenty of older games which scale perfectly fine at 16:9

I guarantee that if a game this old looked fine in widescreen, it was by accident. Attaching individual HUD elements to opposite corners tends to be the easier solution, not something you do because you're trying to be forward compatible.

 

Also, yes, they probably did use Flash. It's vector-based and therefore infinitely scalable; more recent games disguise it by calling it "Scaleform", but it's pretty close to an industry standard.

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Honestly I'm not only surprised Ross did an actual Sonic game and didn't pull another Wolfenstein (like maybe he'd play Jazz Jackrabbit or an unrelated game with the term "Sonic" in the title) but the fact that he played the one I played as a kid is amazing.

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3 minutes ago, sharktoothbubs said:

Honestly I'm not only surprised Ross did an actual Sonic game and didn't pull another Wolfenstein (like maybe he'd play Jazz Jackrabbit or an unrelated game with the term "Sonic" in the title) but the fact that he played the one I played as a kid is amazing.

i think it would get pretty lame if he constantly did that

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9 hours ago, ScumCoder said:

@Ross Scott this was one of (very few) videos I've ever seen that made me literally put it on pause to stop laughing. A couple times I laughed so hard that my diaphragm went into spasm and scared me that I won't be able to breathe.

 

Wow, thanks, that's pretty much the highest compliment.  This actually got me thinking I should definitely do a Game Dungeon on another game I was thinking of that I was borderline about, but I think it's one that will half-write itself.

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3 minutes ago, Ross Scott said:

Wow, thanks, that's pretty much the highest compliment.  This actually got me thinking I should definitely do a Game Dungeon on another game I was thinking of that I was borderline about, but I think it's one that will half-write itself.

If uncontrollable laughter is the highest compliment for you, then I want you to know you cause these pretty regularly with me as well. You manage to find, show, and create some of the funniest damn things.

ISTP-T | Aspiring Blind AF Pilot | Student Programmer

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4 hours ago, steviewonder322 said:

Because of this comment I've been watching his reviews all day. I quite enjoy his breakdowns but wow is he harsh on Heroes. I'd heard nothing about this game before yesterday. Ross made me love it, now I don't know what to think.

Well I tried to warn people I'm a casual fan of Sonic.  I don't have the palette to be offended by the finer nuances of the game, but I definitely noticed being dropped to my death a lot, that part wasn't subtle.

 

1 hour ago, Steve the Pocket said:

You mentioned the game occasionally continuing to accept input during what's supposed to be a scripted sequence. 2006 had that problem too, in a big way, and it's interesting to learn that it was an ongoing issue that Sonic Team struggled with.

I may have explained it poorly (I realized late in editing, the camera angle wasn't the problem, it was the TIMING of when it switched the controls.  Basically, if you hold down forward for a loop de loop (which you NEED to for some of them), when it's almost finished it will IMMEDIATELY switch the direction that takes you. In my death in Metropolis, I didn't change anything, the game did.

Quote

 

On skyboxes: This is cheap, but if nothing else works, you might consider upscaling them and then running them through a lens blur filter, to hide the crust and make it look like the product of limited depth of field?

I hate depth of field for anything except cutscenes or scoped view, etc.  I'd rather drop the whole resolution than do that.

Quote

 

By the way, what control scheme were you playing this with? The HUD suggests the existence of a Z button, which I've never seen on any controller other than the GameCube. And I feel like the GameCube version would have made X and Y actually look like the kidney bean shapes that it had.

I tried both gamepad and keyboard.  I actually had less issues with the keyboard.

Quote

I take it this is your way of saying you tried OBS and it has problems?

I've had issues with frame pacing on OBS, but maybe that will get fixed when I move to Windows 10.  Beyond that, I've run into games obs CAN'T capture.  That happened to me in Deathtrap Dungeon, I was only able to stream that because I ran it in a virtual machine.  Running games that way means you lose out on speed and hardware AA options.

Edited by Ross Scott (see edit history)

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