As of this morning I have achieved my Platinum for Sonic Frontiers. Everything was done: Every S rank, Red Ring, Memory Token, Fish, Max Level, and so on. Whatever is to do, It was done. Not going to beat around bush; I love Sonic Frontiers. The story, the presentation, the music, the game loop, the control, the exploration. My score would be a 8.5/10. Not going to do a GOOD, MEH, and BAD. This is simply my top 5 things I think Sonic Team needs to improve to get closer to that 10/10
1. How many of you happened to find yourself awkwardly trying to complete an obstacle course only to find out the way you entered the course was not the way that SONIC TEAM intended, so the camera did not shift to the proper perspective? Happened to me a grip of times. I want to say that SONIC TEAM should indicate where the starting points are for each course but, from a game design choice and personal preference, I think a large part of the fun when solving these courses are figuring out where they begin. The camera could just shift regardless of where the player enters the course but I can see that having problems as well.
2. I'm looking for next memory token. I found it Way the hell up in the sky! So how do I get it? I don't see a spring. I don't see a close obstacle course that looks like it will get me up there. Am I missing something? I'm looking around for like 30 minutes and I have no idea how to get up there. As I start to give up and move on for now I keep it in camera and as I'm running away what do you know? Path to it starts appearing piece by piece. Yes, I am missing something; a better draw distance. I understand technical limitations and all but if you know that, don't put that shit way up there. Hopefully by Frontiers 2 old gen consoles have been left behind and Nintendo has stronger hardware.
3. Outside of the Titans Sonic has a variety of mini bosses called Guardians he can take on. Beat them all once and don't bother with them again. These fights are soo overly gimmicky that it becomes a chore to do them multiple times. SHARK, SPIDER, and TANK are the worst. Every Guardian has a gimmick that must be completed before you are able to damage them effectively. Lets use SPIDER as an example: First you got to para loop all 4 of his legs, and then for whatever the reason Sonic is launched high into air where you must sky dive while collecting energy balls to fire back at him .. and then you get to hurt him. Now, doesn't sound too bad right? If you don't defeat him before he recovers you got to do all that again. That applies to every Guardian. I would prefer less gimmick and more fights like NINJA class enemy. As you get stronger it will be easy to defeat them on first round and it is satisfying to do so, but still too gimmicky.
4. While we are on the topic of fighting; I do think the combat system is a little too simplistic. Now, I'm sure it is intended to be simplistic, but it ends up being kind of unsatisfying. Don't get me wrong! I love how flashy the combat looks especially when stringing together multiple special moves. I never not chuckle at Sonic throwing energy balls but it's mostly just mash square and press circle every now and again. I say kind of unsatisfying because combat starts to become a little more gratifying when you have all the skills unlocked and are on the final island where enemies are at their toughest. I general enjoy fighting the NINJA class enemies because of just a straight up no gimmick brawl that I feels like it's the only fight that puts all those abilities to use. Also, the RPG lite thing is so lite that it feels pointless. Spurs it a a little.
Just in case you guys didn't know the parry is automated! Just hold the shoulders buttons down and Sonic will do everything for you.
Make a Infinity sigh with para loop and get infinite boost for a while
Triple bounce then stomp leads to a ground pound which is overpowered.
5. Cyber stages are my least liked part of the game. For one they are just rehashes of past Sonic stage design and while it is cool to see some of them come from Adventure series, they control like ass. Even within boost based stages this Sonic does not control well in them. This Sonic was designed around a open world and taking this Sonic and sticking him in these stages just feels clunky. It is very easy to overshoot jumps because of Sonics jump power being based on open world and the fact that he also has no drop shadow. Problem is more so with the 2D base stages. Seriously, Sonic feels floaty while jumping but also like rock with how un fluid his movement is. So weird. Full 3D stages fair better until they start wanting you to drift. Sonic has no drift mechanics! Why pick that stage layout knowing that? Then the level templates are just Green Hill, Chemical Plant, Angel Island and City Escape over and over again. Blaaahh. In the next game design a new type of special stage that takes the place of these.
I could go on and talk about more things but in comparison to these 5 the rest would just be minute. I am so excited for what the Sonic franchise is going to deliver in the future, but not just from game design perspective, which they nailed in regards to creating a new formula, but a status quo as well. One of the major themes of Sonic Frontiers is moving on. One could look at the Chaos peoples desire to exist forever as their downfall. This is important for the current crew as well. It is implied that the status quo that these characters have been associated with for decades now are changing. The Amy, Tails and Knuckles we have known for over 20 years are getting updates. We have gotten glimpse of Eggman's new transformation already; He's a father now! A cute way to add something to new to Eggman. What does the future hold for everybody else? Maybe the upcoming DLC next year will answer that but if not, I hope the wait is not long. I am already ready for the next Sonic game and I can't remember the last time I felt that about Sonic in a non obligation fashion.
There was one scene in which the Chaos people were piloting their Titan Mechs in space. My roommate who is long lost Sonic fan said, "What the Fuck!?". I missed that about Sonic :).
Ohh! and Fuck Elder Koko for making me increase speed and ring one long level at a time.