Ok, this is a followup to my last post. I felt the need to elaborate on comments I made of Mirage Saloon. Its not a shitty zone. Personally I just don’t like desert levels. Still, something about this level feels off. It’s not a bad level, persay, but I just don’t dig it.

Now, the whole “western” theme is still out of place for a Sonic game, but nowhere near as disease-ridden as Sweet Mountain or food fuckery of Lost Mind… or the toy box shit from Advance 3. To their credit, at the very least they blended in that western shit so that it looks like it belongs in a Sonic game. Can’t fault them for that.

 But then there are some fucked up elements. 

This is that Looney Tunes shit I was referring to. You’ve got a disembodied hand holding a gun for you to be fired from. 

I know Classic Sonic levels were designed so mechanically in the past all for the sake of spectacle (Casino Night, you know it), but this is just retarded. They couldn’t just use barrel cannons instead? It looks like it came from a fan game. It just looks so… foreign to the Zone itself, despite being part of the Western theme. Could be that it looks smoother than the rest of the level. Or the hand and obsolete lookin gun just doesn’t mesh well.

Piano springs are just lame. 

Was that painting supposed to be in a haunted level of some sort? Its got eyes lookin straight at you for some reason. I guess its the boss of Act 3, hell if I know. Just feels random and out of place otherwise.

I quite like how the centipede badnik crawls around the pillars before attacking. Nice touch.

Oh hi asshole from Spring Yard Zone! I see you’re more tedious to fight now than ever before!

No, that’s not a problem.

“Egg-seltzer”? Da fuq…

This is a new gimmick in which you press the top to fire a spray bridge that lasts just enough time for you to blink. Its… pretty lousy. An oversized spray bottle just reeks of “LOL CARTOON LAND”.

The little bastards from Sonic Chaos (or Triple Trouble?) make a comeback. And seem to have the attack patterns of the Rhino badniks from Sonic 3.

No, that’s not a problem. 

Wait… is that a chemical vial on the bar shelf!? Da fuq kind of drinks are they serving here!?

Ok, Im getting pissed now! Stop fuckin showing me characters you assholes have no intention of making playable ever again!!! This isn’t cute anymore! You’re  effectively taunting people with this shit! Easter egg my nuts!

Fuck it, I’d like to play Silver again! That’d be nice!

Mirage Saloon is… “goofy”. In that it likes to show off its western theme in more than just an aesthetic choice. And the ways they choose to do this seems… odd. When you look back at the old Sonic games, the zone themes and gimmicks made sense to a certain degree. Ofcourse this is because a lot of them were based in futuristic/industrial themed zones so the gimmicks wouldn’t seem out of place. SCD’s Wacky Workbench, for example, is a factory with lots of machinery at work, so it having an anti-gravity floor, freezing vents, and spinning turbines doesn’t come off as bizarre. It’s just a tedious fucking zone. 😛

For the zones that aren’t based on scifi industry, the themes and gimmicks are a little more conventional. Like say Hill Top has regular mountain ranges and a shit ton of lava and Earth quakes. Sure the seesaws are an odd choice, but overall, Hill Top feels like a normal outdoor environment, all things considered. Marble Garden is basically ruins with tiki heads that shoot arrows, and earthquakes that shift the landscape. Everything here feels natural (Spinning tops withstanding). The gimmicks make sense while still representing the Zone themes.

Here, you’ve got a fucking disembodied hand holding a pistol, springs made up of piano keys, and an oversized spray bottle! That’s AOSTH bullshit right there! Where is the logic in those gimmicks? They just seem to exist for the sake of expressing the western theme rather than bringing it to life! If it was a circus themed Zone, then the silly shit could be overlooked. But it comes off more desperate to prove it’s an original level.

Up until Sonic Advance 2, Sonic Zones existed on islands/continents with actual landmarks, so to some degree, the Zones were more down to Earth, if you catch my drift. They weren’t just a bunch of haphazard blocks randomly strung up in a level. Well.. maybe Spring Yard is. But there is context to their existence, and thus the zones maintain a certain level of cohesion and reality. They feel like actual places in spite of some weirdness.

Mirage Saloon (and by that same token, Studiopolis though its still the better level) were clearly not designed with that in mind. Mirage Saloon is more of a time period! They’re seemingly designed from the mindset that, exclusively, it is cartoony, therefore logic has no place in the game. The painting that looks at you screams looney tunes. Hell, even Sonic 4 got that right.

It’s why I asked if the game was simply going to be a pack of Zones without context. Again, its not a shit level, its aesthetically pleasing to say the least, and the music is ear sex, but it looks suspect as fuck. Unless this shit takes place in America.

Feel free to call me an anal retentive cunt. 😛