The producer of the Yakuza series has remarked that he wouldn’t mind getting into the Sonic franchise, though he has a much different take in mind.
Daisuke Sato, series producer for the Yakuza franchise, remarks that if he had the chance to make a Sonic the Hedgehog game, it would be much different from the series standard. The Yakuza series recently saw the Western localization of Yakuza: Like A Dragon, an unconventional new entry in the cult classic crime franchise that shifts the gameplay focus to a JRPG format, similar to games like Persona 5. Reviews for this unique new game are glowing; it seems that this new direction has paid dividends.
Sato’s remarks about Sonic are rather bold; the blue hedgehog has had a very consistent brand over the years. Sega’s flagship mammal has established a whole identity around running fast, collecting rings, and fighting robots, and it’s been serving him quite well. He has a tremendous, deeply loyal fanbase which has carried him through some incredibly lackluster 3D titles, and he even got a full-length motion picture recently. The film was a surprise hit, and brought the blue blur more fame than ever before.
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This fame hasn’t gone unnoticed by Daisuke Sato. The producer was interviewed recently by SEGA Europe as part of SEGA’s 60th anniversary celebration. Sato reflected on several aspects of his career at RGG Studios, and his first memories of working for SEGA. At one point, the interviewer asked Sato to choose a SEGA IP that he never got to engage with that he would like to work on. His answer, of course, was Sonic the Hedgehog. “After all, when you hear SEGA, you think Sonic,” he remarked. Sato did take the time to mention that if he did get the chance to work with the iconic hedgehog, he would certainly change some things. “If I were to do it, I wouldn’t do Sonic as it was, I would like to make a completely different Sonic.” Check out the full interview below.
Sato didn’t go into too much detail about what his version of Sonic would look like. It’s easy to imagine the plucky blue hedgehog getting into brawls on the streets of Tokyo or working to unlock Dragon Karts. But Sato has had a long and eventful career, which includes work on the infamously difficult Super Monkey Ball series. His take on Sonic the Hedgehog could draw inspiration from any number of sources.
The Sonic franchise is one of gaming’s most iconic names. It has a powerful, enduring legacy which has driven it across almost thirty years. SEGA has already expressed big plans for the hedgehog’s 30th anniversary next year. It’s not terribly likely that Daisuke Sato will be involved in these plans, but it’s still worth wondering just what his take on Sonic the Hedgehog would look like.
Next: Yakuza: Like A Dragon Review – Like No Other
Source: SEGA Europe
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