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GameTrailers: Design Issues From Dreamcast Hold Sonic Colors Back

I’ve got a ton of respect for the guys at GameTrailers for providing great video content and in-depth, entertaining video reviews. They are also usually on the same wavelength as I am when it comes to judging a game. Their review of the upcoming Sonic Colo(u)rs is one of the first out of the gate for this hotly-anticipated, cycle-breaking game. As of today, they have placed the lowest score on the game with a 6.4/10.  What?

While I think this score is a tad harsh (considering that they gave shittier 3D Sonic games better scores), GT mentions what most reviewers have thus far omitted: lingering issues 3D Sonic, which probably ruined the game for them entirely. From my brief playtime with the game, I can say that there are some frustrating design choices in Sonic Colo(u)rs that are held over from the Dreamcast era, like blind spots (resulting in sudden, unfair spikes in difficulty), inconsistent level design or SEGA’s “close, but not quite” physics. It’s a moment where you just say, “It’s 2010 and these issues still exist?” It’s kind of a turn-off and I can see where GT is coming from, even though it has yet to break the game for me.

None of this is implying, from my point of view anyway, that Colors is a bad/average game.  From what I’ve played, this game is a vast improvement.  SEGA’s getting there.  The improvements to 3D Sonic and the game’s “no bullshit” approach have been appealing to me, coloring my impressions on the positive side.  It’s just that while I was having fun, I did notice these issues and was perplexed that most reviewers passed up the opportunity to point them out for the benefit of future Sonics, especially since they’ve been around for so long.

Check back here at Retro around release time to see if we think Sonic Colo(u)rs is truly the best 3D Sonic game.

Also, lol @ everybody attacking GT for this review. “BUT EVERYBODY ELSE GAVE THIS GAME AN 8/10 WAAAAAAAH.” So, do you want all reviews to be the same? How boring. Good luck with that. Another classic is “YOU SUCK AT PLAYING THIS GAME THATS WHY WAAAAAAH.” Contrary to popular belief, it is possible for a developer to make bad choices. Some people really suck at understanding the concept of opinions.

(“Reach For the Stars” is still a horrible theme song.)

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59 Comments

  • Reply

    I’m not attacking GameTrailers, but I still think it’s a crappy review. I didn’t like it when IGN overstated how good Sonic 4 was anymore than I liked it when GameSpot overstated how bad it was. It’s more or less the same with Colors. I’d dispute any review that gave it a 9.5 or a 10 and glossed over its less happy-go-lucky aspects as surely as I’d dispute a review like GameTrailers.

    I’m perfectly satisfied with the 7-8.5 scores the game’s been getting, unlike the whining fuckwits in certain YouTube comment boxes.

    What it comes down to–in both directions, positive and negative–is that making mountains of molehills is poor form, the end. I think the mark of a good reviewer is the ability to discern the difference between how bad something actually is, and how much of your annoyance is just you being annoyed… or, how good something actually is, and how much of your epic fangasm was just you having a fangasm.

    If that makes any sense.

    • Reply

      Do arbitrary numbers really mean that much to you?

      • Reply

        No, but the general opinion associated with them does, hence the “and glossed over its less happy-go-lucky aspects” qualifier on that 9.5-10 example.

        By the way, at what point did I bring up an issue with the number-rating that GT gave Colors? I just think their reasons are bad. Making mountains out of molehills, like I said.

        • Reply

          It was implied with:

          I’m perfectly satisfied with the 7-8.5 scores the game’s been getting,

          I honestly think that’s too high, given what I’ve seen thus far, but we all have our own opinions. It should really be around 3 or 4 on the SARN (Scale of Arbitrary Rating Numbers)

        • Reply

          The one thing that annoys me is that people tend not to look at things like this in an objective manner. Unable to see both the positives and negatives, people will just cling to one and allow that to cloud their judgment. -.-‘ Haven’t seen the review yet, but I will in a bit.

        • Reply

          @ slide

          I was referring to the fanbitching going on in the YouTube comments of, say, IGN’s review. Apparently “Great” isn’t good enough for some people, IGN hates Sonic because it didn’t get at least a 9.

          My point was that I’m not being hyper-fanboyish about ratings that are lower than I think the game’s worth.

          Keep in mind: the Four-Point Scale that most game-media outlets go by ranks “6” as average, “7” as good, and so on, and so forth, and IGN is no different on that front.

          @ Loki
          People tend to be extremely one-sided like that. When I was talking to people about the things that SLIGHTLY annoyed me about Sonic 4, the reaction from people who enjoyed the game tended to be this really defensive SO WHAT SOUNDS LIKE NITPICKING TO ME SONIC FANS ALWAYS WHINING BLAHBLAHBLAH. Annoying…

  • Reply

    I admit that I feel the 6.4 score is a bit harsh for two reasons. The review states there is very little use for the Wisp powers and while I haven’t played the game myself, I have seen playthroughs that illustrate that the powers’ are skill oriented. You can’t just grab a power and use it how you want – it seems you really need to explore the levels and find each use carefully. Pair that with the fact that a lot of the game looks completely beatable without any wisp powers and I think we have a misunderstanding of design frameworks. 

    Secondly, the clips they showed of Sonic’s dialogue that were intended to have me writhe in pain actually had me smile, as Sonic never seemed more lively and the script is pretty funny, blatantly coming from writers of our generation who adore 4th wall-breaking humor. I am not a child and I still enjoyed the cutscenes in Colors, despite what GT says.

    Otherwise, fine and exhaustive review.

  • Reply

    “Reach for the Stars” sounds good in the instrumental versions, it makes the trailers super exciting.
    Interesting that the review that goes through the “bad” points still gives it an ok score, I’m pretty excited for Colours, but I’ll hold out on my opinion of it until I’ve played it first hand

    • Reply

      :/ I like the theme with words But I gotta say Endless Possibilities was better in my opinion ….why fans complaining about the song it ain’t that bad you can’t always have Crush 40

  • Reply

    My problem with the review is that it’s not in-depth enough. Based on the little information I was given, it just doesn’t add up enough in my mind to justify the lower score. If you want to say something is bad, you ought to elaborate a bit on WHY… particularly if you’re going to rate the game lower than (or on par with) games which are quite obviously worse.

  • Reply

    I agree that the theme is shit and I personally prefered it when it was all crush 40 and guest artists like sonic adventure 2. But I did like the unleashed theme(main theme not the ending). Otherwise who cares if gametrailers rated it differently? Just use a different review as a basis for buying it.

  • Reply

    What truely bemuses me is the still present “floaty jumping”. You could say oh its just a 3D Sonic problem but its not because jumping in the 2D sections looks totally and wrong and I felt that SA2 got jumping just right.
    The horribly light jumping is a problem Sonic has had since Heroes…

  • Reply

    you know what would be cool, if perhaps SEGA would go and ask Nintendo for some pointers, i am really curious on the outcome of a sonic game if they took advice from Nintendo

    • Reply

      Amen to that. Donkey Kong Returns should be an actual quality video game and the recent Mario games have been awesome.

    • Reply

      Well, that represents a problem. As right as you are, there WILL be some dumb Sonic fans saying “Oh, Sonic’s copying Mario”

  • Reply

    Reviews are reviews. Other the jumping, I think Colors is awesome, but that’s me.

  • Reply

    “Free” is also a horrible theme song and I understand you. :'(

    • Reply

      The Free Riders theme?

  • Reply

    I think this review is okay, not too keen on how not very informative it is.

  • Reply

    This review is BS. Especially since Other reviews have given it higher scores, and plus, they’re saying SONIC ADVENTURE 1&2 is bad in the process.
    That’s one way to tick off the general population.

    As for the main theme… Meh, it’s passable. If you want REAL suckage, listen to the game’s ENDING theme by Cash Cash.

    • Reply

      …Crap, I just realised I’m complaining just like the article said I would. DAMN YOU PEER PRESSURE.

    • Reply

      I thought Sonic Adventure was pretty lame. Parts of it were funny b/c of how stupid they were I guess.

      • Reply

        The voice acting was terrible too 😐

  • Reply

    It’s a pretty bad review, it objectively focuses mostly on flaws rather than bringing to attention to things they enjoyed.
    I’ve had an absolute blast with this game so far, so bitch and moan that occasionally you might get a cheap death, you learn from it and become a better player for it.

    They don’t even seem to be aware that the green wisp grants a light dash ability, they moronically collect each individual ring rather then use the ability.

    • Reply

      Not only that, but they explained that the game had really bad controls when all you had to do was hold forward. Also the part where he said the game was trial and error, he literally jumped into an electric enemy.

      Even though GT is bad at video games, they can get into detail smoothly. The problem with this video is that all they seemed to do was troll everyone instead of using detail; that really sickens me.

      • Reply

        The controls at times might throw you the wrong way, but most of the time they’re just great to be honest.
        It plays a hell of a lot better than Sonic 4, and it doesn’t just throw boosters everywhere to be honest, not nearly as much.
        Why there are segments where actual skill is involved, others where reflex is needed, and sometimes you just sit back and enjoy the ride.
        It’s good stuff, they really manage to keep each level unique.

  • Reply

    The lyrics for Reach for the Stars are pretty bad, but not quite as bad as how “Free” come off. Nevertheless, I still find myself enjoying the extremely uplifting wavelengths of both songs. Call it a guilty pleasure, but don’t get me wrong: I’d say Crush 40 did better jobs at theme songs back in the Dreamcast days. Sonic ’06’s theme is epic but overused, and the songs in Black Knight are pretty rocking overall.

  • Reply

    well, i can agree with him on the voice acting…. actually no, the voice acting is great, the script is horrible…

    and the theme song is lame, other than that this game looks amazing

  • Reply

    For the record, I can agree that cheap blindspots and not-tight physics need to stop. That goes just the same for Sonic 4. And it’d be great if SEGA did something about that ubiquitous on-rails 3D gameplay necessitated by an unnecessary overabundance of bottomless pits and leading to aforementioned cheap deaths and getting blindsided. That shit gets old in any dimension.

  • Reply

    Im just flat out DONE with Sonic games, I still enjoy the dreamcast, A LOT, even if it hasn’t aged well, all it needed were sequels to improve on it, but instead they just kept getting worse. Now Im supposed to except this game because its okay, and that newer games will get better? I don’t think so, Ive been suckered all these years, and I thought I was done after unleashed, but they sucked me in again, but now I know better. Sonic Team will never make a good game ever again…. Now I know this is like the 3rd or 4th time, but THIS TIME! I will never be fooled again! .,………….also Sonic’s voice sucks

    • Reply

      Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me. Get fooled 4 times … well … it’s better late than never?

      • Reply

        How can you say the game is bad…you haven’t played it yet….

        I’ll admit I’m not liking Roger Craig Smith too but give him a chance hes only started Ryan and Jason wern’t exactly good when they started (Sonic Adventure, Shuffle, and Sonic X) and if you still don’t like it switch to Japanese

        I hate the fans who never give SEGA/Sonic Team a chance of course thats always gonna happen -.- look SEGA is giving us what we want be happy coz you know what Change will happen DEAL WITH IT OR STOP PLAYING SONIC GAMES 😀

  • Reply

    Yes, too harsh. Colo(u)rs was a really big step, and It seems to be far superior than the highly hyped Sonic the Hedgehog 4 Ep I. 
    This is the first time I’ve see a gimmick that works well with the game, a thing that not happened with the Werehog (Unleashed), carrying a Sword (Black Knight), etc. 
    I will going to purchase this game, but maybe in December, since I’m going to get a Wii in that month. 

  • Reply

    I think maybe you guys should check this out here: http://gonintendo.com/viewstory.php?id=141879

    I’m not sure if it’s true or not but the more I watch it the more correct it seems.

    • Reply

      Which is why websites shouldn’t review games until they are ACTUALLY out.

  • Reply

    Sonic colors sucked? GODFUCKINGDAMNIT!

    • Reply

      That’s right, jump to conclusions. We need more responses like that.

      • Reply

        Thats kinda out listening to the reviewers :/ in future I recommrnd you should buy the game first then see for yourself don’t judge a game by its look or other’s opinios -__-‘

  • Reply

    Newspaper in Sweden gave this one 9 of 10. Only issue is the easy difficulty.

  • Reply

    Again, GT gave Modern Warfare 2 pretty much 50% of 09’s GOTY awards. I can’t take them seriously ever anymore.

  • Reply

    Not suprised, Sonic Unleashed Daytime was crap, and this is more of that.

    • Reply

      I Beg to differ 😀 for me Unleashed was one of the best Sonic 3D games yet of course thats just my opinion but you can’t agree with GT I mean we haven’t played it yet….get the game and see for yourself don’t listen to the reviewers until you are certain

      • Reply

        So, he should listen to you instead of reviewers and go BUY the game instead of maybe renting it?

        Sounds like a sales pitch if I’ve ever heard of one.

        • Reply

          All I’m saying the game isn’t out till tomorrow or 16th or today if you live in Australasia

          Give it it a chance don’t judge it yet Its not gonna be as super faced paced as Unleashed was

      • Reply

        So I played Colours, it arrived at a friends house a day early (Play.com lol), who trusts SEGA (and actually enjoys the crap they put out these days) a lot more than I do.

        It plays like Unleashed Daytime. Unleashed Daytime was terribad. I’m not buying it unless it’s pre-owned for like a fiver and there’s nothing else out I want to play. 

        • Reply

          So ….Did you like the Werehog stages or did you not like Unleashed at all?

          People asked for day stages like Unleashed and their getting it

          and people asked for a classic return for old school fans and they got it

          Seriously SEGA is giving you what you want now but you’ll always complain about every single detail you should be lucky what SEGA is doing for us it can’t always be the Adventure days etc etc ……Respect and trust SEGA or just leave the fanbase 😐

        • Reply

          I think TrueSonic and Sega should both leave the fanbase. Go find a new crowd to push this garbage on b/c the real fanbase has seen enough. I mean its been 17 years since S&K and the best they can even manage in the 2-D realm is a half-assed version of that.

        • Reply

          Look SEGA is listening to both 3D and 2D fans you want 2D back you got it! Sonic 4 ain’t a bad game ….I hope your not complaining of Sonic not having his original design and green eyes….Gameplay is much more important than that

          If you don’t like it then leave the fanbase no point complaining and nagging 24/7

          Be Happy with what SEGA is giving you… they want to listen to us now they tried something 5 years ago and it did not work out for some people……If you are a fan then don’t brag every single time.. of course if they make any difficult/bad/mediocore games thats okay but not always

    • Reply

      I’d agree, but then I played the PS2 version. Seemed like the short end of the stick. The HD version looked more fun. Even the night stages.

      • Reply

        The Xbox 360 version was miles better 😀

  • Reply

    If you are unsure if you are going to buy Sonic Colors, watch this video: http://gonintendo.com/viewstory.php?id=142020 . CAUTION: MAJOR SPOILERS!

  • Reply

    I finished the game and yeah, the issues GT mention are in the game. But in no way do they overway the good in the game. The nasy botomless pits arent everywhere.

    It’s still their opinion however

  • Reply

    This guy at Game Trailers freakin’ sucks as a reviewer. He just stinks at the game, and that is all.

    • Reply

      “YOU SUCK AT PLAYING THIS GAME THATS WHY WAAAAAAH.”

  • Reply

    We’re talking about the morons that gave Modern Warfare 2 over 50% of last year’s GOTY awards.

    Might as well say “Fuck it” to what they think, honestly.

  • Reply

    “Hey guys Sonic is now about reflexes!”

    (and the fandom rejoiced)

    Ah, I’m done with Sonic Games… I can’t like “Corridors” gameplay.

  • Reply

    If the game is good or bad, its gonna be my decission, but of course im gonna rent it first before bought it, and……….. after the Modern Warfare dilemma, those guys lost my support 😛

  • Reply

    […] has made Sonic an absolute joke is gone.  While it’s good for it, Sonic Colors still decides to bring along fundamental design problems that people shouldn’t be tolerating […]

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