SEGA has said that the company's plan to revitalise its legacy franchises was made because of its recent success with Sonic the Hedgehog, stating that the blue blur "has forged new paths for SEGA."
Alongside its grand reveal for new games in the Jet Set Radio, Golden Axe, Shinobi, Streets of Rage and Crazy Taxi series last night, SEGA issued a press release that included comments from Co-COO of SEGA Corporation and CEO of SEGA of America Shuji Utsumi , who credited the Sonic franchise in leading the way and offering the publisher the chance to revitalise its other IP.
"In recent years, Sonic the Hedgehog has forged new paths for SEGA, bringing the franchise to life and reaching new audiences in ways we had only dreamed of in the past," Utsumi said. "Building off that success, we are digging into our legacy and reimagining several franchises to bring these games to more audiences around the globe.
"Today's announcement is just the start of our initiative. First and foremost, our ambition will be to create great games with memorable characters and worlds. We hope fans of all ages will look towards our future with anticipation as we release these projects in the coming years."
Sonic the Hedgehog has no doubt been a breakout success story for SEGA over the last five years; starting with Sonic Mania and the Sonic Brand Team's popular social media activity, the strategy to leverage a number of multi-media partnerships (including deals with Paramount and Netflix to create movies and animated series) gave the franchise a new lease of life.
This led to a whole new captive audience to experience a number of Sonic games that have arrived since, from Sonic Frontiers' gameplay reboot to Sonic Origins and Superstars' appeal to older and family players. If you compare the state of the IP of ten years ago, it's easy to see that Sonic is in a much better place today. And SEGA execs have repeatedly said as such too, with financial reports consistently highlighting Sonic Frontiers' breakout sales records.
As SEGA fans (as well as Sonic fans), knowing that the recent success of Sonic has helped encourage SEGA to be more bold and revisit its broader IP catalogue is incredibly heartwarming. What do you think of Utsumi's words? Let us know in the comments section below.
Source: SEGA Press Release (via Crunchyroll)