Thanks for your insight. I agree with what you say, and I don't intend for any player to watch my devlog before playing my game. I still have a long way to go and I intend to polish the game for the player to have a very pleasant experience, even with new control to learn.
I know in general that controls have been refined to a point each genre has its own standardized control mapping.
On the other hand, roller skating as a genre in the video game history, wasn't refined at all. Only 5 video games can be called roller skating games, without going to obscure flash games played by 10 people. And among those 5 games, 2 of them are good enough to remember, but they are also the same IP : Jet Set Radio 1 and 2. So we can't really talk about generations of AAA developers refining the controls. Especially when you know JSR was underestimated by Sega and had no budget and tiny team.
I think my control mapping is an improvement, or a refinement to stay aligned with our discussion, but it needs both more polish and a little time to get used to as any new thing.
I don't think it's that bad of a brand new control mapping, it's just a hybrid between a car game and JSR, so it's not completely alien, and I believe this can bring something fresh and cool.
But I agree that as it is now, the game will get negative review and I'll even think it deserve it. I'll need to work on everything a lot more to get where I want, and those reviews are helpful to get me there.
I agree that specifically roller skating games are few and far between, but skating (skateboards) are similar enough to utilize the same general controls. Its the difference between a motorcycle racing game and a car racing game. They still control the same way.
I have been making games for a long time and I have seen multiple good games get no traction because of "unique" controls. I really dont want to see that happen to you. BTW, I dont think there is anything wrong with having unique mechanics that have non-standard controls. Its simply the primary control method of moving around should be what people have come to expect. If you are Nintendo or a very well known developer, you can get away with doing something really different. With the game industry as flooded with content as it is now, players have about 3 min of attention to be immersed into your world before they move on to any of the other 10,000 games that came out this year.
Can you think of successful indie games that heavily innovated on basic controls?
Hum I get your point of view, but even so I don't think I went that far into "something really different" nor "heavily innovating", I'm just mixing 2 genres... and oh yes I can think of a dozen indie games using crazier controls than what I plan... and ended up being awesome : Papers please, Getting Over It with Bennet Foddy, Road of the Dead, QWOP, Octodad, Surgeon Simulator, Snake Pass, Grow Home, Enviro Bear 2000, FTL, Crypt of the Necrodancer, Darkest Dungeon, Captain Forever Remix, Olli olli, Hammerfight, Insatia.
Those titles have more or less heavily innovative control, but I think they all go equally or further than I do.
I'm basically just mixing classic driving games and classic third person game's control mapping.
Alright, let's suppose I make Neon Tail controls exactly like JSR, first I lose quite a lot of new features, and new game designs, as well as all my tricks and combo system. Then I also lose all the hooks / features that goes with it, that I can use to present or promote the project with (The classic question from bosses / investors being "What differentiate your games from XXX?")
Right now, I already get comments saying I ripped off JSR, I got no creativity, etc... not that I really mind, it's the internet, but killing what's different in fear of adaptability is not an absolute win win situation. I would say it has its risks, but making a clone has its own too.
1 (big I concede) plus, many (risky I concede, but oh so much more interesting for both the players and the devs) minus, all not absolute in theire positive or negative feedback as for the same feature, some will love it or get intrigued or interested, others will hate it, get bored, already seen, or too much effort to get in.
I'm thankful for your efforts to convince me otherwise out of a very supportive thought, but... I'm not really convinced rolling this back is the way... I'm more into polishing this until it's brought smoothly and gets intuitive to take in hand through game design. At most, our discussion might make me look for a way to go in between... I'll think about it. :o