“When you hear Sega, you think Sonic”
Yakuza producer Daisuke Sato has revealed that he would love the opportunity to work on a Sonic The Hedgehog game.
As part of Sega’s 60th anniversary celebrations, Sato was interviewed by Yakuza and Shenmue fansite Tojo Dojo. The producer said viewed Sonic as an iconic part of Sega’s brand. “When you hear Sega, you think Sonic,” Sato said, adding that he’d “like to get involved once at least”.
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Despite Sonic’s status as a world-famous Sega mascot, the answer is still somewhat surprising. Sato, who has been with Sega since 1994, has racked up a huge roster of gaming IPs over the past few decades. Besides Yakuza, he has also worked on titles such as Virtua Fighter and Streets Of Rage, but there are not many similarities between them and Sonic.
That might explain Sato’s comments on how he would produce said Sonic game. When pushed on his vision, Sato explained would be a departure from the Sonic we know: “If I were to do it, I wouldn’t do Sonic as it was. I would like to make a completely different Sonic.”
Heading into their 60th anniversary celebrations, Sega has had a mixed bag with 2020. The company has had a successful next-gen debut with Sato’s own Yakuza: Like A Dragon. And despite having its initial trailer mocked, the Sonic The Hedgehog movie also opened to critical and commercial success, with a sequel in the works.
However, after struggling throughout the pandemic, Sega has also been forced to sell off the majority of its arcade business in Japan.