Stephen Frost: Sonic Boom is a Licensing Success

sonicboom

Former SEGA America producer Stephen Frost has called Sonic Boom a “huge success”, thanks to the project’s cartoon and toy licensing initiatives.

In an audio interview with SEGA Nerds, the producer – who has been at the forefront of all Sonic Boom-related developments, from the video games to the cartoon and merchandising efforts – said that the animated show in particular helped broaden the audience for Sonic the Hedgehog in the US. This also encouraged an explosion of toy sales, which Frost added initially sold out in 24 hours.

Speaking of his response to the fallout from the release of the Rise of Lyric and Shattered Crystal games, Frost was positive about the effect the licensing drive had on reaching a large audience. “Obviously there are pros and cons to Sonic Boom,” he said. “As a whole… for some reason I think people still focus on the game aspect of Sonic Boom. And rightly so because Sonic’s always been a game [character]. But you also have to think about the other things we tried to do with Sonic.

“The goal of Sonic Boom, as I’ve said over the last year or so, is to reach a larger audience with Sonic – to make him relevant again. There’s a very loyal Sonic fanbase [out there], no doubt. But there’s no arguing that every year [the audience] gets smaller and smaller.”

Frost likened the dwarfing audience for Sonic the Hedgehog to other AAA video game franchises on the market. “Even if you have a [AAA budget title] every year, the install base is going to get smaller… So the attempt with Sonic Boom was to appeal to an audience that was not familiar with Sonic – or, were fans previously but weren’t anymore for whatever reason.

“I think from that standpoint it was a success. The audience for the cartoon is [healthy], the toys are selling really well. I remember hearing reports that in the early days, Sonic Boom toys at Toys R Us were selling out in 24 hours – that wasn’t just [sales] from fans, it was from people who were looking for something new.”

The reason for the interest in the toys, Frost noted, was because the “new direction” that the Sonic Boom series took allowed merchandising partners to create more interesting figures based on the new worlds, vehicles and character designs. For licensing partners, Sonic Boom presented “a breath of fresh air into their thinking process and ability to go in a [new] direction.”

Frost also added that Archie and the Sonic voice actors were also appreciative of the opportunity that Sonic Boom presented. For Archie, it offered a chance to create new stories and a new book based on the series, and for voice actors they were able to add nuance to their respective characters.

“I know of so many people who have not been interested [in the Sonic games] that now arbitrarily watch the cartoons and buy the toys, and that’s a huge success,” Frost said. “There are cases where people have come into the Sonic world for the first time, because of either the new toys, or the look of the characters (love it or not), or the cartoon. And that’s why I consider that a big success.”

Speaking about the video games themselves, Frost was pragmatic. “Could the games be better? Yes… [But] I see that we tried to do something different. I think the challenge is that – if you think about the fact that Sonic Team has been making Sonic games for 20-odd years. They understand Sonic and all the things that make a Sonic game.

“In a relatively short amount of time we had to teach new teams what Sonic is all about. But not only that — if I was to say to a team, ‘make a speed-based Sonic game’, they’d have to start from zero and catch up to 24 years of experience in one [development cycle]. Now imagine asking them to reinvent Sonic, to try something different – still capture the speed but also be different enough that when people look at it they know it’s a new experience. It’s really tough!

“We had very ambitious goals. We really wanted to deliver on something that people were excited about, that managed to capture speed but also add new gameplay components… I think that the failures of the game were [of] it being overly-ambitious initially, and the fact that not only were we trying to make a basic Sonic game but we were trying to add to it. We over-extended our grasp in some ways.”

Frost noted that there were a number of positive things that came from the development of the Sonic Boom games – for instance, the popular co-op mode, which he hopes will be a concept that Sonic Team will consider for future mainline Sonic titles.

Naturally, a lot of people have compared Sonic Boom to Sonic Team’s efforts, and Frost accepted that the project’s game development ended up being a victim of the team’s ambition. “There’s a reason why the Sonic games are relatively high quality – they’re basic in design,” he said, talking about how many Sonic titles follow a similar strand of gameplay design. “You have speed, homing attacks… but because of that [streamlined gameplay], and because Sonic Team have been doing that for so long, they can fine-tune that [with every game release].

“We were trying to add in bungee mechanics, combat, puzzles, vehicles, hopefully a more compelling story, and a bunch of different environments. It’s just a lot. And I think that’s the thing. If there’s any lesson that I’ll take forward with me, it’s that being too ambitious can be bad.”

There’s a lot more in the interview with SEGA Nerds – the discussion about Sonic Boom starts at 1:42:00.


Editor’s Note: This article originally offered a brief overview of points taken from the interview that were presented out of context. We have since rewritten the story in its entirety and removed all conjecture from the piece. We apologise for any confusion caused.

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Dreadknux

Sexy founder of The Sonic Stadium, and creator and co-organiser of the Summer of Sonic fan convention. By day, I'm a super-fantastic games journalist, el professionale. By night, I'm the mother-loving Sonical Batman. I keep the site ticking, look after the TSS Network, and get all excited about Sonic games so that you can too. May contain nuts.

69 Comments

  1. It really feels like the idea of “focus groups” and retailer/company needs were pushed past what the players wanted. Of course, in a position where their team was in they couldn’t go against those, lest they lose their jobs, but this is a fine example of why indie games – and Sonic fan games – work better than the official ones. They’re made by fans for fans, something that I hope SEGA and Sonic Team think about in future endeavors. Forget about the suits and the focus groups, do what you think is fun and they will come to like it.

  2. Really? Keeping the franchise alive by taking away its key component,speed.
    “Suggestion that part of the reason why Boom (game) isn’t that good is because the team didn’t know what Sonic was about/lack of experience.” Why hire people that don’t know about sonic?

    1. “Why hire people that don’t know about sonic?”

      Most expert level game developers don’t spend all their days playing sonic games. If you take the world set of developers and you intersect that with the world set of knowledgeable Sonic fans, and then intersect that with the set of people looking for jobs (or willing to switch jobs and locations), and intersect that with the set of English speaking people, you get a very, and I mean very, small set of people.

      1. Except they were hired to be developers of a Sonic game. It’s their job to investigate on the series they’re taking in charge of as much as they can. “Hurr I don’t know anything about what I’m working on, I was never a fan” It’s a nonsense.

        1. The majority of game developers have no say or weight into how games they work on are made, they are hired into their positions to complete what they were hired to do. There’s only a very small (~1-5) team of people who direct and manage the whole project making decisions, and those guys are usually so incredibly busy that any Sonic related game research must be absolutely of the utmost importance to take up their time. Do you think a company is going to spend tens of thousands of dollars letting their managers and directors play Sonic games (even for just a week! it can cost a company this much money in time) just to add probably quite a minimal amount of improvement to the final product? It’s simple, no.

          And no, it is not their job to investigate into the series, it’s their job to do the contracted work Sega pays them to do, and if that includes a budget to research more into the Sonic backstory and franchise (which it usually doesn’t) then they would.

  3. I like frostman… but this has got to be the biggest bull crap ever. You can litteraly take sonic. Make adventure style gameplay with a mix between adventure level design, and modern open world like areas or just worlds in general. And mesh that together and get a much better game.and i dont know about you,but i dont see alot of features in the game.Freaking Shattered Crystal seemed to have more features and it was a better game. GENERATIONS HAD MORE THEN SHATTERED CRYSTAL AND IT WAS FAR BETTER. And about what was asked being too much for a team. Essencially, they asked you to make a modern platform with sonic. And you find that hard?

  4. I feel like SEGA has learned a painful lesson from the Boom game so I think it’s safe to say that SEGA now knows what to do for future Sonic game, hell I hope that there will be another Sonic Boom game that focus on speed and fix the mistakes that were made in Rise of Lyric.

    1. If that happens, then Sonic Team needs to work on it. I don’t care how different it would be from RoL; as long as Sonic’s gameplay is fast and the music is actually memorable and catchy, I’m good.

  5. I’m sorry, I know why he said this, but I do not think the Co-op worked well in Rise of Lyric at all. In fact, I’d dare to call it the worst part of Rise of Lyric, as it just makes the game so unstable that it loses playability. I do not know how anyone could sugar-coat that with a straight face, but I am not about to get bent out of shape over it.. especially given my less aggressive feeling towards the game.

    With that said, however, he makes a great point that multiplayer should become a part of Sonic in the future. Sonic has never really had a large focus on multiplayer, be it competitive or not… I think that Stephen makes a pretty valid argument that it’d be a good push for main Sonic.

    1. I played the co-op portion with a friend of mine and we had a blast, actually. I think I liked it a lot better than playing it on my own, in fact.

      1. Really? More power to you, man.

        It may be sort of like how I didn’t encounter nearly as many glitches as everyone else, but I know that when I played co-op, the game just went haywire with Sonic & friends teleporting all over the place (even above pits), constant framerate issues, pop-up that would be at home on an Atari Jaguar, etc. This was all before the patch, mind you… but I can see what you mean, despite my co-op experience sucking.

  6. I’m glad Frost was axed from Sega, I really couldn’t be happier about something related to this company. How much more will this guy need to damage control before he pisses off already? “People liked the co-op” yeah, sure, everyone liked that broken co-op that made the game worse both visually and gameplaywise than it already was.

    1. So basically you’re happy that a man lost his job because you disliked his portrayal of a fictional cartoon hedgehog? That’s a bit harsh don’t you think?

  7. this is a great example,
    DONT LISTEN TO THE FANS! do what you always do sega as no matter what people will always complain.
    if they say sonic is too fast, then thats their problem.

  8. “Speed was shelved because we were under the impression people didn’t want it.”

    WHO ARE THESE PEOPLE!?!

  9. Maybe I’m getting old but… “Suggestion that people/retailers are bored of Classic – Dreamcast era Sonic. States you can only do so much with these eras/characters. He does go on to suggest this is from a retailer standpoint.” I was always under the impression that the Dreamcast era was the most liked.

    Regarding the part about trying to appeal to non-Sonic fans. It reminds me of that atrocious Final Fantasy Mystic Quest game, which (then) Squaresoft developped to appeal to non-JRPG players in the US. FF fans know how it turned out and how it’s received by the community.

    Removing speed… it was taken the wrong way. Personally at least, it’s not Sonic’s speed that I have an issue with; it’s the boost mechanic since Unleashed that basically dumbs down the game by saying “you can’t get hurt by enemies and you run very fast, so we have to make the path entirely linear with no deviations for the next 15-20 seconds.”

    Stages taking too much development time is a valid concern, as is the argument that creating more characters to spread it out. So why not take the Classic/Advanced era solution of having some parts/shortcuts of the stage accessible only to characters with that trait (Kunckles breaking open paths, Tails flying high)? Adds replayability, cuts down development cost, compared to creating entirely new stages for each character.

    Sonic Boom failed for two reasons: It has way too many technical issues first and foremost, and seconldy it was a non-Sonic game with Sonic characters.

  10. There’s only so much stupidity that can come out of someone’s mouth…
    Stephen just proved me wrong.
    I mean, really, let’s be honest bub, the only successful part of the Boom franchise was the TV show and maybe toys. The games selling horrendously, comics only appealing to only comic fans… Don’t even get me started on how Boom ripped of Ratchet & Clank.

  11. What a load of bullshit!

    I really hope Sega and Sonic Team are NOT listening to this guy!

    A lot of game franchises that are still running since the nineties (in my opinion by far the best decade of gaming) have been ruined, because the publishers or developers thank that they need to reinvent the franchise to reach a wider audience. This is in my opinion a very wrong line of thought, as such long running franchises have a big fanbase and the number 1 thing the developers need to do is to make sure that they create games for that very fanbase and make sure that they are most satisfied. This way, the franchise will sustain high recognition and keep its identity. The idea of reinventing for a wider audience makes the franchise lose focus, some fans go away, some new ones come, but they are not united and want different things, the overall regard for the franchise suffers, no one is ever completely satisfied and it only gets worse over time. Sonic and Tomb Raider are perfect examples for this. That being said, there is nothing wrong with spin-offs and new ideas. New ideas are always very welcome, as long as they keep the spirit of the original concept, so that it wouldn’t displease the core fanbase, and spin-offs are acceptable if they are clearly marketed as such and are of high quality in their own right. The concept of a spin-off Sonic Action-Adventure game is a very exciting one to me, but Sonic Boom is far from a good representation of that.

    ” you can only do so much with these eras/characters” is such a saddening and maddening thing to hear from “professional” game developers! Once again, it’s the result of the franchise having lost focus and now, even the people in charge for the various new games in the series don’t know what the series was originally about. Sonic 1, Sonic CD and Sonic 3 & Knuckles were excellent games and so far, there hasn’t been a SINGLE Sonic game to recapture their feeling in even 2D, let alone 3D! How can a “professional” claim that there is nothing more to do?! Even when talking about the Sonic Adventure games, they had LOTS of room for improvement! The number one thing past the nineties that most game developers (not talking only about Sonic) have OBVIOUSLY forgotten how to do right is level design! I’m still longing for a new game that actually manages to present an awesome balance of variety, challenge, exploration and imagination with it’s level design, the way that actually many games of the nineties did! Usually, 2D games do it better, but modern 3D games are FAR from the ideal! You don’t know what to do with the original concept of the Sonic franchise anymore? I tell you what: Translate Sonic 3 & Knuckles to 3D! Too incapable of doing that? Fine, then pick the Sonic Adventure games, or the Sonic Unleashed type games, or the Sonic Story-Book games, or Sonic Lost World, and they ALL have still a LOT room for improvement! Again, first and foremost: LEVEL DESIGN!!!

    Speaking of the newer Sonic games: I love the core concept of Sonic Unleashed! In my opinion, there is nothing wrong with the concept of having the boost ability in a Sonic game and challenge based on lightning-fast reflexes. The problem is that the idea is not executed in the best possible way. In both Sonic Unleashed and Sonic Generations, you have practically endless boost. It would have been much more satisfying if the boost ability was difficult to sustain. Additionally, having the boost ability should not result in repetetive gameplay. Again, think of what the original Sonic games were about! What WERE the original Sonic games about? This is what I think:

    – Flow! It doesn’t mean that you have to run fast all the time, but it means that, if you master a level, you can play it in a way that you rarely ever come to a halt. You are always in motion and the whole experience feels fluid, dynamic and uninterruptive.
    – Momentum and a general sense of good physics! You should feel a difference when you go up-hill or down hill, you’re character must have a nice sense of weight, and you should gradually pick up speed when rolling down a slope, which should also increase your jumping ability.
    – EXPLORATION AND THOUGHTFUL LEVEL DESIGN!!! I just can’t stress this one enough! One of the very biggest appeals for me of the original Sonic games were the complex level layouts and how thoughtful the various routes were designed, offering different experiences based on the player’s skill level and goal, which could go from slow and explorative to fast and competitive. Few of the modern Sonic levels, like the modern version of Seaside Hill in Sonic Generations come close, but the classic level designs are still yet to be topped!
    – Imaginative locations! We are talking about a blue fast-running Hedgehog in a video game! So, developers, go crazy with your imagination! Although, arguably, I thoroughly enjoyed Sonic Unleashed’s interpretation of real-world locations.
    – Variety in each individual level, not only in how they look, but also in how they play! This is what all good platformers are about and what recent Sonic games have definitely room for improvement for!
    – Challenge for the experienced players, while still being fun for not-so-experienced kids! The key to success? Multiple routs throughout a level and rewards for skillful play! Non-skillful players should at least be able to get to the final parts in the story of the game, but there are soooooooo many skillful Sonic players out there who deserve to be challenged through harder but more rewarding routs, special stages, and a well-designed score-system and ranking.
    – Special Stages! I really don’t understand why these are absent in the 3D Sonic games (except for Sonic Heroes). Again, they were a nice rewarding feature for skillful players, while being optional for the main path through the story.
    – Water Levels! 😀 OK, I know, most people hate them, but I love water levels and miss them very much! 😀

    None of the things mentioned above are against having a boost ability with rewarding paths through a level that challenge your reaction-ability. Again, it is not like new ideas are not welcome. It’s always nice to see your favorite game franchise evolve over time, so long the main aspects that made you fall in love with it in the first place remains unharmed! And, again, spin-offs are absolutely fine, as long as they are clearly spin-offs and are designed well in their own right!

    Also: CO-OP AND MULTIPLAYER IS NOT THE FUTURE OF SONIC GAMES!!! DON’T DEVIATE EVEN FURTHER FROM THE CORE OF THE SONIC FRANCHISE!!!

    “Solo Sonic games, I don’t know how long that can last there isn’t enough variety to sustain it.” <——– THIS IS UTTER BULLSHIT!!!!!!!!!!

      1. Thank you very much! I’m very glad to hear that! 😀 I very much hope someone in charge at Sega sees this!

    1. If this comment section allowed gifs, I would’ve posted that one where the guy’s clapping proudly in a greyscale background.

    2. Wow… that has to be the best constructive criticism from a Sonic fan that I’ve seen in a long time! Well done! I honestly agreed with just about all of that. See? This is how you do it: not throw around random complaints– provide actually constructive criticisms about issues!

      I generally think Frost is a great guy, who has a passion for his work! I hope he learned a lot from Rise Of Lyric’s failure. And I mean A LOT. But Co-Op and Multiplayer? Sure, Frost, they are nice things to include but… I don’t see it as the only way Sonic can survive. Not at all.

  12. And of course, Stephen, you had to whine about this article bad-mouthing you. Well, ya know what? You cannot complain. As if the Sonic franchise had not had a bad rep already, the have Game Grumps playing this game. And this isn’t as fun, this game is compared to the likes of Sonic 06, notorious for once being the worst Sonic game of all. And now this? Weren’t you the one who was supposed to oversee the whole game, how was this even passable? A large portion of the problems could be fixed in a simple patch, but when attempted, it did hardly anything. A single cutscene, and two bugs being fixed does not make up for anything. Look, you’re cool as an actual person and everything, but you cannot get mad when people say anything bad about your game, the article made sense in its context before these revisions were made. Everybody makes mistakes, and you’ve made an awfully big one, but that doesn’t mean you have to act like it’s the most perfect thing in the world and everybody who criticizes you is wrong. I get that the game is still being sold and saying anything bad would ruin the sales and whatnot, but every complaint anybody has said is legitimate, and reasonable. What happened to bring shelled away after Boom’s release? All of the sudden you’re speaking up?

  13. Nice work, Svend, on writing an actual article about this, instead of just lazily throwing together a few bullet points!

  14. I’m glad to see that he finally stepped up to the plate. You’re okay in my book Mr. Frost. I wish you the best, and thank you for your time working on Sonic. 🙂

  15. I think Frost is a good dude, and if it weren’t for the Wii U thing the game might have turned out slightly above average instead of just average, but Jesus, thinking that what is now the worst selling Sonic games ever were successes, that’s a little stupid.

    And most of the other comments here? Those are a lot stupid.

    1. Sure, the Wii U is to blame, despite having loads of other amazing exclusives, Frost and the other talentless hacks who developed the game have no fault whatsoever. 🙂

      Your comment is more stupid than any other here, for the record.

  16. Ok, First off I thought Rise of Lyric was ok after the update, not the best but ok. More playable than people are saying it is. As Frost said, It was AIMED FOR NON SONIC FANS AND KIDS! And the TV show, Comics, and Toys are doing a Fantastic job doing that job. As for the games, I think they could have been better if they were made by Sonic Team.

    Now Frost’s comments make sense, they were just doing what they thought people wanted in that group. As for his comments on Sonic Only and Multiplayer/Co-Op…ALL OF MY YES!!! More playable characters is THE thing I ask for the most in any Sonic games, I want to play as Tails, Cream, Silver, Blaze, Knuckles, Amy, and all the others. And Multiplayer would be perfect too! Even co-op, Co-Op in Sonic Boom was a cool idea and a Sonic game with co-op would be awesome!

    After reading these comments, I think people are twisting what Frost is saying. I mean, yes they should have make speed more of a priority but I thought that what they were trying to do for Boom was pretty inspiring and interesting. I see Sonic characters like Mario and Mickey Characters, Perfect for anything or any scenario. I mean Mario’s Main titles involves his classic platforming roots yes, but He also plays tennis, golf, and races go-carts, and if Sonic does any of that stuff people hate him for it. What I’m trying to say here is I’d like to see Sonic spin off games that have more variety, We still have the main series yes and I love the main series dearly, I just like to see the characters in more stuff than just the same stuff.

      1. Drop this ‘common sense’ thing, getting really sick of seeing this from both sides of the argument.

        1. Thanks Hogfather for keeping things in line here because this fosters a wholesome, creative, collaborative environment. I greatly appreciate not getting slammed here like at other places while–quite simply–respectfully sharing a differing viewpoint which may buck the trend. I hope this makes your day! Thanks again to you and the rest of the staff for everything you guys do to make the Sonic community so fun for me and everybody here!

          1. Right! Although Sonic Boom wasn’t exactly the best Sonic game of all time, that doesn’t mean we have to keep on ripping on it. The only thing that caused the game to be not as good was the time restraints.(Don’t tell me you didn’t see “This is a work in progress and doesn’t represent the finished game” at the beginning of the trailer) I think that people need to stop restating their opinion about RoL and move on. I am so glad that people such as Jason Berry, Hogfather, Brad, and Dreadnux, among others at TSS, can at least try to make things right.

            On another note, I can’t download Sonic Runners from the Canadian App Store. Apparently, my password isn’t for that account, but I don’t know what is! Can somebody please help? Thanks.

    1. Hey, it’s that stupid “IT’S FOR KIDS” argument again, I didn’t know people still insisted on that.

      Also, the patch fixed about one or two bugs, everything else is literally the same thing as how the game was originally released, they were lazy even when they had an opportunity to make their glitchy turd slightly less unbearable. Frost and these guys deserve no sympathy, no matter how much damage control he or his apologists are trying to make right now.

  17. This is great to hear. I hope the licensing success encourages Sega to make better console games, and even better games based off the TV show. I wouldn’t mind a sequel to Rise Of Lyric, as long as they add more to it, and consider fixing what people complained about. That means, the game should give us faster characters, better attacks and abilities, with upgrades included. More to explore, less repetitive combat, and more variety to the boss fights and enemy wave segments. More characters, a better explained story, and more polished graphics. Some would have to be crazy to not want a Sonic Boom game, done right. Rise Of Lyric had a great concept, but it didn’t deliver to everyone’s favors. I honestly didn’t think it was terrible. It was simple, but I had fun with it, and I am not one who prefers simple video games.

  18. Now this is great news. I’m happy and have always been optimistic for Sonic. =) I knew Sonic Boom would be successful. I always had faith in the blue blur. Keep up the great work.

  19. While I dislike all the hate, ultimately I agree with xxCrush40 and Johnny2071. Frost’s attempts to validate Boom were weak and irritating. He said that the Sonic formula was getting old and that it needed a “breath of fresh air” but Sonic doesn’t need anymore air. Anymore air and his lungs will explode. What the Sonic franchise needs now is consistency. Instead of trying to strike gold by making new game mechanics, SEGA needs to look back and refine the concepts that got positive results. Instead of making more shallow characters, give depth to the ones you already have. Experimentation is good but don’t give up on a style just because a game was less than amazing. With nearly 24 years of games under his belt, they’re plenty of game styles to choose from. Pick a familiar one and make something great instead of fumbling in the dark.

    1. That being said, Boom was a disaster that probably shouldn’t be revisited for a while… if ever. It’s great that the TV show is doing well and the toys are selling but as a gamer, those things are of little importance when compared to the actual game for which those things are centered around. If there was more of a resemblance to previous Sonic games, I might have held hope that something could be salvaged from Boom and I would have encouraged a sequel. But Boom is not a bad Sonic game, it’s a bad game featuring Sonic characters. That’s what makes it unforgivable.

  20. Lemme tell ya, I love the cartoon and I’m even tempted to buy the toys (to display… heck, I might even play with them lolololololol). The vidya games… eh, I hate to say that I am not a fan of Sonic Boom: Shattered Crystal and I only played a demo of the Wii U game. I honestly tried to get into Shattered Crystal and I literally only played it twice… It’s too bad and I expected it to be ultra mega good. SEGA needs to step up with their Sonic games. I always give all the new games a fair chance and I will say that the last game I genuinely enjoyed was Sonic Generations. Sonic got a really great 20th anniversary, it was better than his 15th anniversary (even though I was not 100% aware of it and I got back into Sonic in 2007-2008). Well, let’s hope things get better. I will say the new episodes are extremely amazing and highly enjoyable.

    SEGA! Please make your Sonic games better! I love the cartoon show, it’s a futuristic AoSTH. PLEASE for the love of Sonic, come up with better Sonic games! Thank you! 🙂

    1. That is a very civilized opinion and I respect it. I will not whine and complain, bc, in my opinion, sorry to offend some of you: Sonic deserves a better fanbase. I’m not saying I’m perfect, but just the fanbase when it comes to Sonic is brutal.

  21. This is crap. Ok, I believe them about the success with the toys and cartoon, but nobody wants speed? Sonic has no single player future? The whole part about the games in general, it’s just crap

    1. It is quite possible for this to have happened if they relied on marketing research groups, which I know many of which take off-the-street walk-ins who just want a quick dollar for taking a survey. These groups sometimes do not represent the population in their entirety due to fragmentation, linked to the location of these marketing groups’ places of business and position of awareness to the general populace and, as a result, the surveyees’ economic, schedule-based and geographical traits. Said differently, if SEGA chose a good marketing group to draw its conclusions, they would have selectively chosen different types of individuals in their screening process and would have had an active search for these people worldwide. We have no way of telling, but this method of marketing research would have given much more accurate results.

  22. Whatever you have to keep on telling yourself, Steph. The comic is the only thing I like about it, but the numbers don’t lie, the TV show is pretty popular.

  23. On Mr. Frost’s defense, I do agree about the cartoon and the merchandise. Sonic Boom is successful outside of Rise of Lyric and Shattered Crystal. Numbers don’t lie and I do in fact enjoy the show. However they failed at the start that Sonic is about gaming first, TV shows and merchandise second. Without the success of the games, you have nothing. AoStH, SatAM and Sonic X were successful not just because they were good shows “and they were” but they also coincided and promoted the classics we know today. Whether it’s the Sega Genesis trilogy or the Sonic Adventure series, The golden ages of Sonic had awesome games with great shows to back them. But Sonic Boom has it backwards. Sonic is being focused less on where he should always be. A fast-paced point A to B platforming game…

  24. Well, I have a bad feeling about this. Now, we have to worry about the future of the Sonic The Hedgehog series. I hate the games, love the comics, and I don’t mind the cartoon. The difference in the comics and the cartoon, to me, is how serious they are. With the cartoon, there is no story to it whatsoever. As for the comics, everything is relevant in terms of progression. However, the games are just a letdown. Now I fear that Sonic Boom will be the Skylanders of Sonic.

  25. The thing is, in therms of updating the characters, Sonic Boom was spot on. Amy is not a dependent annoying little girl, Knuckles is dumb in a funnier way – not just for plot reasons, Tails is highly functional and Sonic has this Nathan Drake for kids vibe that I think resonates with his essence: the adventure hero. Despite the fact that I hate the white bands and the scarf and prefer the rubber arms, everything looks pretty awesome. So the cartoon was awesome because it was something character driven.

    I think Sonic should be reinvented for every console generation. Slightly redesigned and updated… cause Sonic, different from Mario (and even Link), is not a generic placeholder of a character. He need to resonate with the current culture way more than the above mentioned. And that’s part of why the brand today looks way more like a nostalgia trip for a loyal fanbase than a widespread success. I think post-adventure era when people realize Sonic could not be the big action hero of games anymore because things like Halo and Metal Gear Solid were popping up he got a little bit lost.

    And yeah. He has all the potential to be like Batman and Captain America and be a character that reaches 75 years old, but as these he needs reinvention, redesign and very good, focused products. Sonic Boom was a step in the right direction. Now take the character reinvention of Sonic Boom and put together with a great product like Sonic Colors and hit all the right marks and bang: You got yourself a relevant brand again.

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