Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Playable Character Act Petition

Playable Character Act For Gamers By Gamers
Why Steven Vitte has created this petition


To some readers this may come across as something unexpected for me to do, but in truth, this has been something that I have been planning for some time now. In light of what I have seen over the past few years regarding both this gaming franchise and the Video Game Industry in general, I believe that now is the right time for me to bring out something like this. I am at the point right now where I can no longer stand around and watch more wasted opportunities go by. I am at the point right now where I can no longer tolerate the PR-happy excuses that are brought to the forefront of gaming media. I believe some of you already know where I am going with this.

Consider the article that I wrote a few months back about the history of the Sonic the Hedgehog series, at least how I viewed the history of that franchise. That article, titled "Stuck In Neutral: Sonic The Hedgehog", contained how I truly felt about the Sonic series up until that point of time. Many of us had been riding on that "high' of what to expect from the new spin-off (and yes, I'm calling it a spin-off because that's exactly what it is, folks) series called Sonic Boom. Many of us were intrigued by what Sonic Boom brought to the table... only to be hit with the harsh reality that once again something went wrong regarding the development of a Sonic game. 

Now what is this petition about? Why have I made a petition like this one? What are the details that you need to know before you sign the Playable Character Act By Gamers For Gamers? I will attempt to clear that all up in this entry, and I hope that some of you who are reading this now will consider stepping up and signing this online petition.

What is this petition about?

It's simple if you read the details of this petition. This is an opportunity for you, fans of the Sonic The Hedgehog series and fans of video games in general, to use your voice as fans. This is a call for Sega-Sammy Holdings, Sega of Japan and Sonic Team to take a MUCH more serious look at bringing back Sonic's friends (Tails, Knuckles, Amy, etc.) and reinstating them as playable characters for the MAIN SERIES of Sonic. 

This has nothing to do with Sonic Boom since that is a spin-off series. I want to bring attention back to the Main Series where most eyes should be on and I want Sega to realize what kinds of audiences they are dealing with. With your signatures, I want Sega to know loud and clear just how many people truly want Sonic's friends to come back as playable characters in the Main Series.  

Just like with everything else, there is strength in numbers and I feel that if there is strength in these numbers, in these petition signatures, then I would be able to carry out my plans of taking the results of this petition and submitting them in front of Takashi Iizuka himself and in front of other Sega officials (possibly). 

Once I get enough signatures on this online petition, combined with a separate paper petition that I have, then I will be able to do such a thing. I feel that this is something that needs to be addressed sooner rather than later, and I don't want to look back at the Sonic series and say to myself "You know what, Steven? You should have done something when you had the chance!" I believe that now would be as good a time as ever to have people sign a petition like this one.

This petition would be our way of saying "We believe Miles "Tails" Prower, Knuckles the Echidna, Amy Rose and other friends matter," and I believe that message alone would be strong enough for us to do something about what's going on in the Sonic The Hedgehog series. This petition is real, it's serious and I am determined to see the numbers of signatures grow. I will not stop until I get what I am looking for. What matters to me is that I don't quit on something like this, and I won't. This petition is here to stay.

I believe in equal rights and that belief extends into video games. I don't believe in the logic that has been presented in the testimonies of Takashi Iizuka and other Sega officials. I don't believe logic can be obtained with what they are saying about the value of Sonic's friends as playable characters. I believe they are either misled by the underwhelming and corrupt propaganda of gaming media such as IGN, GameInformer, GameSpot, etc. or they are intentionally turning a blind eye and a cold shoulder to this issue, and they will do anything and everything to prevent Sonic's friends from being playable characters in the Main Series.

I believe in these possible theories because all of the testimonies don't add up to me. We need to review all of the recent interviews Takashi Iizuka has been involved in, including the Q&A sessions that he has taken from Sonic fans in past Summer of Sonic and Sonic Boom events. I believe there is reason to doubt what the officials at Sega are telling us and I believe they are not being 100% honest with us. 

"We need to focus on establishing Sonic's gameplay mechanics first before we can look into bringing back other playable characters."

"We are not looking into bringing back playable characters at this time (for the Main Series)." 

Tipping my cap to another interesting video game series known as Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney, I believe I should press on this issue some more because out of all the issues that have been presented in front of Sega and Sonic Team in recent years, the alternate playable character issue has made them appear to be the most vulnerable, and honestly, I want to know why that is.

Why have I made a petition like this one?

I am a fan of Miles "Tails" Prower and I truly believe that I have waited more than long enough to see Tails become a playable character in a Main Series Sonic game. It has been nearly 10 years, A DECADE, since I have had the option of being able to play as Tails in a Sonic game that truly mattered in the main canon, which obviously is a convoluted mess right now, and naturally I am getting impatient. I believe I have every reason to be impatient at this point in time. I have been waiting since Sonic 06, and we all know how much of a disaster that game was in Sonic history. 

Unfortunately, I believe Sonic 06's failure is still one main reason as to why we haven't been able to see Tails, Knuckles, Amy, Shadow, etc. as playable characters in the Main series. Gaming media clearly won't stop laughing over that blunder, and to no credit of their own I believe that gaming journalism is in absolutely miserable shape because of what IGN, GameInformer and GameSpot say, especially when they are not being honest about the games they review. This is a problem because official gaming media outlets refuse to let the memories of Sonic 06 fade away. 

We get it. Sonic 06 was a bad game. The majority of gamers across the world pretty much agree on this. However, do we need to keep pounding this fact into the minds of casual gamers who want to know if Sonic is worth investing in or not? Is Sonic 06 the main reason for placing a lifetime ban on Sonic's friends from being playable characters in the Main series games? 

I just don't see the logic in this and I believe this is laughable. At what point do we just let the bad memories of Sonic go and fight for our right to have good Sonic memories again? Are we just incapable of moving on from bad games now? What is the truth here? That's what I want to know.

I want to know what the truth is behind Sega's and Sonic Team's hesitance of even touching on the subject of Sonic's friends as playable characters. What are they trying to hide? If they aren't hiding anything, then why are they hesitating about this issue? 

In theory, a petition with a large amount of signatures can get any groups of people to think twice about what they should be doing. In theory, petitions should at least make big name groups stop and think a little more seriously about the actions they are currently taking, and to evaluate why they are going in the route they have chosen. 

How easy would it be for Sega to ignore a petition with thousands and thousands of signatures? I would like to know the answer to that question.

"Petitions don't work! Don't try it, Steven!" (repeated to me 1,000 times)

I have either heard this from people or read this in replies from people on the internet so many times, and honestly, it does annoy me. I don't understand why people are so willing to just give up on something like a petition the minute it is mentioned or worked on. I don't understand why people have this belief that if you set up a petition, it is doomed to fail no matter what you do. I don't believe in that mindset, and neither did this one gentleman.

William Wilberforce

I would like to know why petitions are impossible to pull off in this day and age, in a time when technology is advanced and when word of mouth about petitions can spread like a wildfire if people are willing to spread that word. William Wilberforce didn't have the luxury that we have today. William Wilberforce had to have all of the signatures on his petition come in ink pen written down on paper. 

Of course, Wilberforce's petition carries a super gigantic amount of significance compared to any petition that I might come up with, but it's the principle of William Wilberforce and how he went about his business in getting the word out about this petition is what makes me a big fan of his. I was inspired in part by William Wilberforce to start this petition. The Playable Character Act For Gamers By Gamers exists because of the inspiration I got from Wilberforce's struggles and triumphs. 

I believe in seeing something through the whole way when you start it, and that is exactly what I am going to do with the Playable Character Act. 

I believe Sega and Sonic Team truly need to wake up because I have this feeling that within this next upcoming decade they are in danger of losing the many fractured parts of the Sonic Fan Base that they themselves have created. Sega and Sonic Team are responsible for the main divisions of the Sonic Fan Base and they are responsible for the poor decision making and the lack of true leadership when it comes to just making an acceptable and fun video game. 

Sonic has been rumored to become a niche franchise, a gaming franchise that is just there and doesn't push any real boundaries anymore. I want to be able to play as Tails again in a Main Series Sonic game and not have to look over my shoulder and worry about what so-called "expert game critics" think. I want other fans to be able to play as Knuckles, Amy, Shadow, Rouge and others without having that sense of dread that their favorite characters might be permanently taken away from them just because of what media and "corporate sponsors" think. 

Business is business, but when business isn't practical, you don't follow that business model. You do the right thing.

Sign the Playable Character Act! Bring back Sonic's friends! 

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