Lone 'Coon Productions

Independant Creativity - the Best Kind

Majesty's Musings

A Look at Sonic in Two Parts

Posted by supercomputer276 on July 29, 2009 at 4:03 PM

Part 1: My View on Eggman v Robotnik

Let's set up the groundwork here: in Japan, the main antagionist of the Sonic was named "Dr. Eggman". Always have been, always will. However, trying to avoid choking on a copyright (on a Beatles song, no less) when they were trying to compete with Nintendo, Eggman was renamed Dr. Robotnik in the English localizations. In recent times, I've heard many old-school fans want Eggman to go by his last name instead of his nickname already (canonically, his full name is Doctor Ivo "Eggman" Robotnik, with Eggman being a nickname of sorts). Also, right now, I'm leaving out the Archie comics even though he's still called Robotnik there in spite of the constant Eggman references, since it's appparent to me no one cares about them, at least not in this context.

 

On the surface, this works. "Robotnik" is a sinister-sounding name and is, in fact, the Chezk (SP?) word that the English word "robot" comes from. Given that the good doctor uses robots and machines as his primary gimmick, having him named after the source word fits. Sounds appropriate, right?

 

So did Proto Man's internal energy problem being caused by giving Mega Man the Energy Balancer in Mega Man 6. It worked on the surface too. But when you look deeper, it stopped working. So does this.

 

My main point is this: do you people know what the word "robotnik" actually means? It's the Chezk work for "servant", after the first appearence of robots in a stage play where they acted as such.

 

So you guys are arguing to basically name the main villain "Dr. Servant"? Does that really sound like the best idea to you? It doesn't to me.

 

Maybe it's just me. The reason I didn't ask my parents to get me a Dreamcast and Sonic Adventure when I was a kid, which led to me eventually getting into the Nintendo 64, was not because the main villain was being called a "stupid" name; I saw a small sign advertising it and immedately took offense to Sonic's redesign. "What's he doing with green eyes?! They're supposed to be black!" Not my exact words, but the spirit remains. (I had a similar reaction when I first heard of Mario Party 4.) However, I've come to accept the newly-designed Sonic and his crew, along with the Eggman name (although interestingly enough, my strategy guide for Sonic Adventure DX still calls him Robotnik).

 

You can call the doc whatever you want. Me, I'm still gonna call him "Eggman".

Part 2: What I Believe Will Save Sonic

Here's a few ideas for what I think Sonic Team needs to do that will actually, well, help Sonic suck less.

 

1. Sonic R 2

By this I mean, a Sonic racing game where Sonic, y'know, runs. The entire time. During the Saturn period of the original game, the only characters that had any impact on fans were Sonic, Tails, Knuckles, Eggman, and maybe Amy if you had actually played Sonic CD (maybe Metal Sonic too, but that's fairly questionable). Tails Doll and Metal Knuckles were added in just to make it seem like there were more options. However, since then (and to the gripes of some fans), the supporting Sonic cast has grown exponentially. Certainly enough for a racing game. It'd be interesting to see if Jet is just as fast on his feet as he is on Extreme Gear, that much I know. Now suprisingly, I sorta enjoyed Sonic Riders: Zero Gravity after I played it for a while (probably because I had the instruction booklet and could learn the controls before playing it, unlike its predessesor which I rented, but probably because there wasn't a bleepin' fuel gauge this time), but that still doesn't mean a Sonic foot race wouldn't be interesting.

 

2. Make Eggman the final boss again

From Sonic Adventure onwards or maybe earlier, at least as far as the consoles are concerned, Eggman's role has deminished greatly. Sure, most of the time he's the main villain, but he's never the final villain. Having a 3D Sonic game where Eggman is the final boss (Giant Egg Bot mark whatever, I don't care at this point) would help the good doctor get back the spotlight he so rightfully deserves.

 

3. Team Chaotix spin-off game

And I don't mean a action-platform game, no. They were rebilled as detectives in Sonic Heroes (I don't know about Shadow the Hedgehog and don't intend to find out), so let's have them be detectives starring in their own mystery-adventure game. It'd be interesting to see a Sonic game in the game canon that doesn't necessarily have Sonic in it. Each of them has something unique that could be used to aid in solving mysteries. Espio could spy on suspects unseen with his ninjutsu, while Charmy can squirm through small tunnels where the others can't fit, and Vector can use that huge snout of his to sniff out clues and his strength to bust open barriers. There could even be some directed combat scenes where you beat up the perpetrator's goons so you can arrest the true criminal. And, just to make it feel like it fits in Sonic somehow, other characters in the series could cameo or even play a part in some cases. Example: some valuable jewels have gone missing from the local museum and evidence found at the scene indicates Rouge the Bat (natually). However, it turns out she's being framed, and she hires the Chaotix to clear her name (of this case, at least). Recent Sonic games have some interesting storylines, so why not make a game that focuses on story for once? And the clincher: episodic releases. Telltale Games does it and look how well they're doing. There could be a series of five episodes or so released over the period of a few months, and along with the seperate stories for each case, there could be a bigger plotline behind all of them that culumlates into an extrodinary climax in the last episode. Now tell me that doesn't sound like a winner!

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