Sonic Next Gen . Graphics To Die For


There’s a certain bit of leeway given to anthropomorphic characters. But, when you turn even the art style to something “kiddie,” then it pushes a lot of people beyond their levels of acceptance.

And no, he’s not breakdancing.

THIS is breakdancing.

Sega needs to get rid of Sonic…such an overused and worthless concept.

If these companies truly want to change, ditch the old mascots: they’re boring.

what i meant was, its now as much for “grown ups” as it is for kids now adays, since it will still have fans from over 10 years ago when it first came out

Sega ditching Sonic and Nintendo ditching Mario… why? They’re the company mascot for a reason, you need to instantly relate to the company they belong to when you see them, so therefore they do need to be around for long enough for you to be able to do that.

But oh yes, such a worthless concept, a blue hedgehog, it’d be infinitely cooler if we had like… like… Nuke Dukem, who’d go around, with guns, and kill people, in gorey manners, now there’s a good concept. =P


what i meant was, its now as much for “grown ups” as it is for kids now adays, since it will still have fans from over 10 years ago when it first came out[/quote]

Yep, but I don’t think those fans would mind a cell shaded Sonic as it would simply the same cartoony look they grew up with… except in glorious 3D.

I despise cell shading. It looks tacky and cheap. There’s nothing wrong with the way Sonic is portrayed in this recent game. Much better than cellshading.

I fail to see why you’d say that. Your statement is almost as broad as saying “I hate 3D” or “I hate 2D” since cell shading can look so different depending on the art style and, well, every aspect that defines a game’s look cell shaded or not.

Alright, I’ll rephrase. “I despise every form of cell shading I’ve seen”.

I share Al3x’s thoughts in a way even tho I don’t mind that much since I can’t really consider myself a Sonic fan.The blue guy sure looks a bit displaced…

Cell shading is hardly cheap. You still have to go through all the efforts of modelling a 3D world. And even then, it can still look mind boggingly impressive, like in say, the Appleseed movie.

I don’t think he means that it literally looks inexpensive, but rather that it doesn’t feel like it has the visual “weight” of a more realistic style.

Well, that said, I can appreciate something that is heavily stylised as well. I mean… heck, otherwise I’d be watching american sci-fi series and not anime. But that said, it all is a matter of taste of course.

You make it sound as though “American sci-fi” (whatever that is) is incapable fo being stylized, whereas anime is.

99% of anime is, well, tripe. For every Cowboy Bebop, there is a thousand generic me-too brands of anime. For every Evangelion, there is a thousand pseudo-philisophical episodes of anime-of-the-month. And let’s face it: those two are just about the only two that really belong in the true sci-fi genre. Most others are simply fantasy with a future spin.

For American sci-fi, I only really need say one name: Philip K. Dick. If stylized is what you seek, then read anything by him. Or how about William Gibson? His book, Neuromancer, essentially invented the word “cyberspace.” And you want to talk about stylized… That book will make your head spin.

But how about outside of books? Let’s just hit the surface of recent popcorn sci-fi. How about Firefly/Serenity? Plenty stylized, and one of the best-written character studies in a long while.

Shall I go on?

But, I understand your point in that cel-shading, to you, offers something a little different from the photorealism of most games. The problem is that, it’s less stylized and more copycat. It’s copying anime style. I personally don’t have a problem with it, but it certainly isn’t unique. And to those who don’t have a particular affection for that medium, it carries no intrinsic value.

Even moreso than cel-shading, I believe games such as Gitaroo Man, Psychonauts, or Shadow of the Colosuss/Ico offer a much more stylized and unique art style.

It doesn’t just copy anime, it can look very different as far as I know… Wind Waker looks nothing like Jet Set Radio for example. And for a more western look there’s that Spiderman game, I forget its title atm. All it does is “copy” 2D and there’s lots and lots of different art styles that can apply to that since once again it’s dependant on all the other art assets as well as the implementation.

I’m not an anime fan (we don’t really get anime in Greece other than kids stuff like Pokemon, considered just another cartoon here), the reason I would prefer Sonic to be cell shaded is that it could be a good approximation of the good old 2D cartoon-like Sonic without losing the goods of 3D. I see no reason for someone to wish to create an overly realistic looking world filled with cute talking mammals or other animals.

I suppose there’s that sort of fantasy what with the “furries” seen in various things, including anime, but Sonic and friends aren’t like that at all regardless of how realistic and lifelike textures can be applied on him.

And, if anything, Sonic looks more kiddy to me now that they attempt to make him and his surroundings look “real” (and “cool”) almost like a really bad looking muppet thing that deserves a part in the latest crappy kids show… maybe he can get in on the next Power Rangers flick…

Abadd, that brings up a point I think should be made here, as such cel-shading isn’t an art style really, it’s a technique or process. Certainly the look will always fall within a realm of style, but the technique can be used for a great many different artistic styles.

In reality I think it was a cool sounding catch term coined to hype a specific game and look, not so different from Blast Processing (see, I’m on topic!) but in this case it was appropriate enough to catch on for general use.

If I remember right Nintendo named their style for Wind Waker toon-shading but of course everyone knew it was still cel-shading… right? Yes and no, the game did not employ the outlines which was also part of the style defined by Jet Set Radio, and indeed the outlines are more the thing that literally references traditional comics and cartoons, in the case of animation the cels.

But a single pixel’s width solid black outline cannot literally be considered a shading technique either… and when people see Wind Waker they automatically make the association with other games they’ve seen that used the actual shading style. For instance the Sly Cooper games draw outlines around the characters also, but the actual shading model employed is mostly conventional.

Cel-shading is not the same as cartoony, and cartoony is neither the same as cel-shading. Cartoony can be considered an art style, cel-shading is one rendering style that can add a specific appeal to the style… or not in the case of some people obviously. But it’s truly a mystery to me how a game suddenly looks cartoony if it’s cel-shaded for some people but not so many other games that are every bit as caricatured and reduced except having smooth (and usally very bland, monochromatic) shading.

But I especially can’t relate to why some seem against the look on principle, games like ICO and House of the Dead 3 beautifully demonstrate the potential of the general technique for increasing the drama of the image when employed with sublety and skill. A hallmark of fantasy artwork has always been exaggerated contrast and proportions, cel-shading fits that sensibility more directly than the majority of examples of wrestling “style” out of math we’ve seen in 3D.

Umm… yeah so that’s my beef. shrug

I agree. There’s no reason for Sonic to be running through a realistic setting. Sonic Adventure 1’s levels were pretty much how 3D Sonic levels should be in my opinion. Next thing you know they’ll be modelling real-world cities like MSR and PGR.

Well keep in mind, I meant surely in terms of aesthetics. Anime tends to heavily stylise their characters to the point of being physically impossible in some instances. Whereas well, alot of western fantasy and sci-fi artists try to portray characters as photorealistic as possible. I’m quite aware that americans are very capable of creating a good sci-fi or fantasy story. ^.^;;

Anyway, using Wind Waker style shading on Sonic wouldn’t be a bad idea in my opinion. Or bright and cheery levels. You’d think that they learned from Shadow The Hedgehog by now that making a franchise “badass” doesn’t equal an overwhelming success.



Carry on.

Actually, Heretic… the black outline isn’t the cel-shading. It’s the actual texturing and shading that makes it cel-shaded. The black outline is, I believe, what is called toon rendering.

Just wanted to clear that up :slight_smile: