Hmm, there’s another interview with Aaron Weber’s gay cousin, Stephen Frost. It’s an hour long and I don’t feel like watching it at the moment.

We’ve got a little more info on gameplay which reduces my expectations even further. this mess has the details.

GZ: Combat appeared to be quite a bit more involved than previous Sonic games. What can we expect in terms of the combat gameplay?

BR: In combat, our goal was to allow player expression via character selection and ability to engage enemies. We wanted to enhance how players can engage enemies through different character abilities. These are some really fun characters! We’re excited to allow all four, not just Sonic, more center stage in combat and navigation.

I gotta ask the question of why they keep hammering in on Sonic. Yes, we have multiple playable characters, that is a good thing. We’ve established he “isn’t” anymore important than the other characters appearing in the game. That’s good! That’s grand! That;s A O fucking K! SHUT THE HELL UP ABOUT HIM!

I’m more convinced that these interviews are desperately scripted to calm down the furious anger of the Sonic fanbase. Yes, there’s lots of bitching because Sonic was the sole focus of Sonic games for 6 whole years. Yes, I wanted to play Knuckles again, but we don’t need that shit reiterated for the umpteenth fucking time. As for the answer, this tells us nothing but what we can already expect. Characters can play differently in combat situations. Ooook.

GZ: What are the uses for the energy tether, and was Knuckles Chaotix an inspiration for that idea?

BR: We looked at a lot canon titles including Knuckles Chaotix as inspiration of what would work best to establish this action adventure experience. We ultimately decided to go in a different direction for Boom. The energy tether, or “Enerbeam”, can be used in quite a few ways. Some examples are, in locomotion, such as the zip lines, to pull things like shields off of enemies and to interact with elements of the game world. Basically, it is used to some degree in all major pillars of the game and is an important character ability. It will also show up in the animation when appropriate.

Ah, so the pilot episode of Sonic Boom… and the electric shit in that screenshot… is apparently this game’s gimmick. I thought the pulley was a normal level feature, but that thing is tied to a universal character gimmick?

Beautiful. More BS Sonic does not need. Gameplay gimmicks haven’t made Sonic games more enjoyable unless they enhanced what people already enjoyed about Sonic (The Rush games introduced boosting which very people took offense to. Shit, it made the last few 3D games entertaining!) And did he say ALL major pillars of the game?! Emphasis on the word “major”. It smells like it’s gonna be overused like the team system of Sonic Heroes.

Has ANY Sonic gimmick ever been praised? People might’ve liked all the playable characters in the adventure games, but their playstyles outside of Sonic’s have been criticized to death. In comparison, games like Generations have less critical backlash. Why? There is no gimmick (unless you wanna argue about the whole “classic/modern” switching as one).

These guys talk a lot about how much they loved the original Sonic games, but they’ve demonstrated a poor understanding of why those games were successful and why the recent ones have been less favorable. When the dominant criticism of Sonic games are poor experimental gimmicks, you take the initiative to leave that bullshit out. Gimmicks drag Sonic games down and hold them back from being appealing again.

Honestly speaking, if they used the format from Generations in how Modern levels are designed… in a superior Sonic game, hell, Sonic games might be fun again. Why they go this route of experimentation is beyond anyone’s guess.

GZ: Will the game take advantage of the Wii U in any unique ways?

BR: We’re using some of the unique features but you will have to wait until E3 for specific details

The fact that it will use anything Pii U controller related at all is bad news, I don’t think we’ll need to wait for E3 to know it’ll be shit.

GZ: The extra layer of color, character redesigns, and adventure is reminiscent of Naughty Dog’s games. Do you feel that that’s a matter of coincidence or your own legacy shining through?

BR: I’ll take that as highest form of compliment. Having served as Naughty Dog’s art director from inception of Crash through co-art direction of Uncharted 1, it’s fair to say I’ve gravitated towards some staple character action elements through my career which make sense not only to me and other creative teammates at BRB, but also to SEGA. These staples are the hallmarks of any great character action titles. For Boom, SEGA has been very instrumental in evolving its objectives with us. In turn we approached this huge opportunity with the balance to try something different, but not stray too far too far from what makes a great Sonic title.

*sigh*. I really shouldn’t comment. I’m aware people are tired as hell of character designs being called shit. I’mma just say this. If they make sense to you and… not the fans (cause we’re still bitter about that shit), you need to recheck your upper story and figure out who you’re making the game for. They say they want to appeal to a broad audience, but they’ve pissed off a good chunk of em already.

Also, those DEFINITELY aren’t staples of of character action elements. Those are more along the lines of “Adventure elements”. And it’s pretty narrow a perception of what makes a character visually fit for an adventure which is geared toward the old Indiana Jones/Pirate and Treasure Island tropes of design school. It’s not at all fitting with Sonic’s “world”, but they’ve made it a point that this isn’t an actual Sonic game, so I’ll zip my lips for now.

GZ: The presentation in NYC made much of Sonic’s popularity, but from my perspective as a guy who played the old 2D Sonic games through to a few of the modern games, I have a hard time seeing who the modern Sonic audience is. Who is the modern Sonic audience in your eyes? Who do you hope to grab most with this new game?

BR: You and I grew up on classic Sonic or Mario games, and have also played great modern descendants like Limbo, Guacamelee! or Journey to name a few as vastly different experiences. My kids, ages 9 and 11, play everything from accessible mobile games to sit-down experiences like family console titles. Character action and platforming have morphed quite a bit as well as the way the current generation of gamers experience games. The easy answer for me, having witnessed my kids and their friend’s gaming choices, is to consider what they look for a in a premium console experience. For BRB it was important to make Boom simply fun by finding the right balance of accessibility for new fans similar to my kid’s age group, yet have enough challenge, depth and player expression for established fans or more seasoned gamers.

What the fuck is Guacamelee!?

What is a “family” console game? Shit from Nintendo? They’re the only ones who still think families have time to sit down with their kids to play video games anymore.

Kids aren’t easily swayed by complex controls. As long as the little hyper active fucks can touch a controller and do shit on the screen, they are fine. It’s the older crowds that have less patience.

The whole “challenge is what adults want” argument  is also an exaggerated claim (thanks in special part to the nerds on the internet). Everyone wants the same thing in a game. A fun and entertaining experience. Would you consider Jak 2 challenging? Of course. Fun? Hell naw.

Lastly, what in Amma’s name is “Player expression” supposed to mean? Giving the characters some “taunts” to laugh at or what? Some things developers talk about make no goddamn sense.

Damn, what a short interview. I guess they had enough of Bob’s nonsensical chest humping as well.

All this BS though, I have less hope for this game than before. If the character designs weren’t unappealing before, the gameplay will be a deterrent with this whole tether system. But in hindsight, it makes sense considering what Sega is really doing.

Anything project that is designed with the intent of selling merchandise will introduce stupid things that have little quality. There’s no need for quality when the target demographic is little children, specifically little boys. There was an Avengers cartoon back on Fox kids that had very little appearance by the big three (Captain America, Iron Man, Thor) and had these HORRIBLE redesigns of the characters.

Who’s that big ass robot in the background? That’s goddamn Ant man.

In the same token, you could recognize a good chunk of those characters eitherway as their redesigns maintained a minimal resemblance to their original counter parts (cept Ant Man). But all and all, these characters basically… “transformed” into their super hero personas to fight crime, and looked uncool doing it. This show was made exclusively with the intent to sell merchandise. And it bombed. Course when you think about it, Ant man never looked cooler, but he never was.

Merchandise driven… anything will always have poor quality in all it’s endeavors. Just make the damn cartoon to sell toys and clothes, that’s the mantra of network execs. Tis why Pokemon sucks now. 😛

Another thing to keep in mind is… the cartoon will appear on Cartoon Network, the one station right now that is so focused on selling toys that they literally cancel shows with good ratings. Last I read, they scrapped Young Justice after 2/3 seasons because the toys were simply not selling. That AND they have been adamant in chasing away little girls because “they do not buy toys”. I mean, I didn’t find Young Justice worth anyone’s time (teen drama is bullshit everyone hates), but it had a good amount of seasons for a reason.

“They’re all for boys ‘we do not want the girls’, I mean, I’ve heard executives say this, you know, not [where I am] but at other places, saying like, ‘We do not want girls watching this show.”

So, we’ve got execs talking about not wanting certain demographics to be included in their viewership. Read that whole link mang. Does that not sound like what Sega’s been doin since their “08-09 fuck it clause”? CN’s obsession with little boys is comparable to the stories of Zeus and Ganymede.

On the other hand, we’ve got pieces of shit like Teen Titans Go… actually getting decent ratings. It’s the same format as Sonic Boom will be in. 11 minutes episodes filled with stupid humor that appeals exclusively to them. And beyond all our bitter hatred for that show, it’s working well for CN.

That’s a pie that Sega clearly wants to get a piece of. At the same time, in order for a merchandise driven show to succeed, it has to appeal narrowly to little boys or little girls. There can be no broad audience because it takes more work and might not even have sufficient returns. Why? Because older audiences have standards. When it comes to shows that appeal to little boys and girls, they have no standards because they’re too young to have any experience. As far as things are going, Sonic Boom is going to be exclusive to little boys because, yeah, they young and inexperienced… and they’re kinda dumb. I’ll admit, little girls happen to be just a wee bit more clever than little boys. It ain’t their fault, it’s just… what it is. Just as the convo states, they’re hyper active and very much into toys and video games.

So with Sonic Boom, Sega has all the excuses to really alienate their core fans and go after new ones because for merchandise driven BS, it’s a necessity. You can’t sell adults on merchandise as easily as children because we need to care about how much money we spend. Kids ain’t got no responsibility to speak of but eat, play, shit, and sleep. And parents, lawdy, they’re so desperate to get their kids off their backs, they’ll buy anything to distract them, even mother fucking Grand Theft Auto.

So the whole tether nonsense, while stupid, makes business sense as the show will not be made for core Sonic fans. Merchandise driven crap has nonsense in them that makes no sense in context, but is “cool” for little boys because what do they know? It looks cool to them.

That said, the game being a tie-in for the cartoon will also not be made for core Sonic fans which is why everything doesn’t even resemble Sonic in some sort of way. The interviews and whatnot are all just damage control. Looking at the inside scoop of their first experiences with Sonic games, none of them sound realistic. They all talk about graphics and technical prowess of the Sega Genesis being their “first experiences”. None of them talked about whether they thought the games were any fun. I’m led to believe it’s all nonsense and considering how Sega is filled with a bunch of pathological liars (remember how Sonic 06 were going to take Sonic back to his roots?! BWAHAHAH), I’d be more inclined to believe the interviews are bullshit. All of this nonsense is orchestrated to shut the core Sonic fans the fuck up. Cause what kid is gonna listened to these hippies drone on about their first time playing Sonic?

It’s probably too soon to base Sonic Boom’s chance of success on Teen Titans Go, but it might have a shot, who knows? The cartoon at least. The game wouldn’t have a chance in the jaws of Ammut. Far as I’m concerned, they should just focus on the tv show and not bother with what is a big budget spinoff. Since big stupid comedy appeals to little boys, CN might be pleased to keep it on the air. Course then we’d have to think about Amy’s presence since CN isn’t about appealing to girls. hahahaha…….er…..