It would appear that Sonic Team isn’t finished with the home console market in terms of Sonic the Hedgehog just yet. Last year left a lot of Sonic the Hedgehog fans with a rather sour taste in their mouth with the release of Sonic Boom: Rise of Lyric on the Nintendo Wii U and Sonic Boom: Shattered Crystal on the Nintendo 3DS being absolutely terrible in the ratings. Both games featured a host of quirky bugs and horrible game play mechanics and that caused fans to become worried about the future of the franchise and whether or not it would return to the console. It didn’t help matters when Sonic Team announced a game for smartphones exclusively called Sonic Runners. While both console games were not made by Sonic Team, it is still a worrying factor with many companies abandoning the console and even PC market to hone in on the smartphone market like many other main stream franchises have done.
SEGA, however, is very unlikely to move the franchise permanently off of home consoles as the fan base is largely users of consoles and tend to shy away from mobile phone gaming. Head of Sonic Team, Takashi Iizuka, spoke with 4Gamer and stated that there are no future plans to eliminate the franchise from home consoles. The following is a translation of the statement made by Iizuka:
“At this point in time, of course not. For this work (Sonic Runners), we wanted a very user-friendly platform, so we chose smartphones, which we thought would fit the free-to-play model well. We have no plans on stopping Sonic games intended for household game systems, so, from the bottom of my heart, please do not worry.”
That being said, it’s a huge relief for us Sonic fans to know that our beloved hedgehog won’t be banished from consoles in the future. The question that remains is, when is the next Sonic game coming out for consoles, Sonic Team?!
Huge thank you to Will Whitehurst for the translation.