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When nostalgia sucks...

Discussion in 'General Video Game Discussion' started by KoL, Oct 2, 2013.

  1. KoL

    KoL Expert FPS Player
    Staff Member Moderator

    You know where this is going and you knew if anyone would make this topic, it'd be me.

    So yeah, this is the topic all about those games that you played and enjoyed as a kid, re-acquired or replayed many years later as an adult expecting to enjoy the nostalgic memories... and then you realize that game you enjoyed as a kid is in fact a horrible pile of badly-designed shit and you regret picking it back up and ruining the nostalgia forever.

    It should be no surprise that the two games that come under this category for me are Heretic and Dark Forces. I loved the former as a kid and after replaying its sequel Hexen as an adult and loving that just as much as when I was a kid I couldn't download Heretic off Steam quick enough... and then I started playing it. Same story with Dark Forces almost except I didn't like it as much as Heretic as a kid, and hated it a fair bit more as an adult.

    So why did I suddenly dislike them? Simple: Their design was annoying and genuinely bad at times, and as a kid I didn't really have the awareness to realize they were so bad. Heretic somehow manages to make a ton of different mistakes throughout its levels that include but aren't limited to putting lava rivers into ice levels, putting monsters in rooms that are the exact same colour as they are so you can't see them, horribly positioned monster closets (the most ridiculous example being a closet placed behind you when you spawn into the level that opens the moment you move,) very poorly-hidden secret levels, placing level exits behind ridiculously-placed secrets and dumping boss monsters into the level exit rooms throughout the entire of Episode 3. All in all it makes for a game that's just annoying rather than challenging and you feel like you're fighting the game's bad design more than the enemies. Also, the weapons are shit (one weapon has a muzzle flash that blinds you for example) and the inventory system is even worse (you literally can't use items in the middle of a fight due to how badly designed it is) so the shit design isn't just limited to the levels. I could go on for days on end about everything wrong with Heretic because there is far more than just this wrong with it, but I'll leave it at this.

    Dark Forces, as I said, managed to be even worse. There's far fewer issues with this game, but the issues it does have are much more problematic. Ridiculous level design in several cases (figuring out Level 3 is near-impossible outside of figuring it out by pure accident or using a guide, and that's just one example,) absolutely disgusting graphics in the levels (apparently no-one told the level designer that, yes, you can use more than one colour per level) no save feature (the game gives you lives instead - run out of lives and die? Repeat the entire level...) and the Prison Complex level manages to literally be Daikatana: Dark Grey Edition due to featuring all the same problems as Daikatana's infamous, bright-green starting level (same colour issue mentioned earlier, explosives having far larger hitboxes than their explosion graphics, weapons that often do as much damage to you as to the enemies etc etc...) which makes it seem rather hypocritical that Daikatana gets slagged on for being terrible but Dark Forces is considered a classic despite, minus game-breaking glitches, doing the same terrible things Daikatana did (worse in some cases - at least Daikatana let you save mid-level even if it did limit the number of times you could do it.)

    So there you go, now you can post your games that you enjoyed as a kid, replayed again to enjoy the nostalgic memories, and got nothing but a kick in the teeth and shit game design for it.
  2. Well, I always say that Sonic 06 is not as bad as people make it out to be (which it really isn't in all honesty), but I still think it belongs in this. I thought it was the best game ever at the time because it was my first Xbox360 game, and it was the first Sonic game where I truly beat the game.

    The story I thought was amazing back then, but now, even though its still one of my favorite story lines, and that I've been exposed to all the negativity to the game, I'm beginning to see plot holes in several places. "Why didn't the king just seal Iblis inside of him when he was dying instead of his own daughter?" "Why didn't Shadow just take the Scepter of Darkness back with him, preventing Mephiles from being released?" "How is Blaze there?" And in all honesty, it makes me mad that I didn't realize this as I was playing, or that I've had my bubble burst.

    Gameplay wise, it was okay; but it was not perfect by any means. Characters were slow, attacks were risky to take, and it was really just a pain in general. Enemies with rockets could knock your rings away from you with one and send them flying with another; you could go flying off the stage by accident if you weren't careful with a Blaze dance or homing attack, sometimes a punch from Knuckles wouldn't land, etc. To be honest, Silver's controls felt the most refined, if only they had left in that speed boost thing they were originally going to give him. And oh my god, do not even get me started on the ball room challenge; that was an utter freaking nightmare, and I only passed it because of a glitch I saw.

    The graphics, I'll admit, are mediocre, but they were pretty high def compared to the earlier series. HOWEVER, NOBODY DESERVES TO SEE EGGMAN LIKE THAT EVER AGAIN. NOBODY. *shudders* and Sonic Man? Please, no.

    Glitches, however, do happen quite a lot in this game. Not all the time mind you, and I've never faced any of the "game breaking" glitches that so many apparently faced when they played, but enough to annoy me. Knuckles and Rouge's wall climbing glitch, the messy camera, sometimes a boss would kill you after you won and you would still lose, etc. Apparently there are some that cause you to warp out of the level from a single homing attack? Eh, whatever makes people sleep better I guess.

    Voice acting left a lot to be desired. A few of the characters were perfect, but then you have Omega with his awful voice, Tails, Rouge, and you could barely hear Shadow half the time. Press Y to get on the bike. WHAT? Press Y to get on the bike. Bro, I still can't hear you. Dan Green will always be a perfect villain though, god bless Mephiles.

    Back to story aspects, one thing that didn't really bother me at the time that kind of bothers me now, I guess, is the whole Sonic dying, Elise kissing him back to life, and erasing everything that happened. It makes me really wonder what could have happened if they just remembered it, and Amy just wasn't herself during that scene.

    Regardless of what people say, the game is playable, but it's a harder game than most fans are used to. One thing that people really forget to do is read instructions, buy upgrades, and talk to the townsfolk, as its a bit easy to get lost if you don't, and some powers make gameplay SO MUCH EASIER. Oh well, not like anyone can play it worse than the Game Grumps did.
  3. Doctor Oak

    Staff Member Overlord







    In no uncertain terms, Sonic 2006 is one of the worst games ever released. It might not have been if they actually finished making it before they released it - but they quite actively didn't, and the result is a genuinely unplayable mess of 10 minute loading screens and utterly, utterly broken game mechanics (and I mean broken in the sense that they just don't work). It doesn't take removing nostalgia goggles to realise that - just not having marijuana goggles on when you played it the first time. I forced myself through the entire ordeal over the space of a weekend and I knew every step of the painful way that it was an horrendous excuse for a game. It had an interesting attempt at a storyline and it had excellent music - but absolutely everything was let down by the actual development of the game. There is no scenario - other than where the game was given the two or three more years it actually needed in development to be completed, which obviously would make its given moniker impossible - where Sonic 2006 could begin to be considered at any time "the best game ever".

    Sonic's professional career between Sonic and Knuckles and Sonic Colours reads like a celebrity slowly going off the rails ala Robert Downey Jr - with Sonic 2006 being Downey's explosive sacking during Ally McBeal and Sonic Colours being his Iron Man. (Ironically, the timeframes are not dissimilar).

    In a sense, it's a good thing, as it really once and for all put a cap on the direction that Sega was constantly pushing Sonic in since the Dreamcast. Once Naka left midway through Unleashed (I like to consider the bad half of Unleashed to be down to him, regardless of what the reality may be), everything fell into place for Sonic for the first time since the mid-90s. That clear-headedness may never have happened without the zenith of the very public collapse in 2006 - so it may well have had its purposes in the long run. But that will never really excuse the game itself. Nothing can.

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