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Sonic Boom TV Show & The Game - Nov 21st 2014


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This is what happens when you go all-in on reimagining a Japanese game for maximum Gaijin appeal, wonder what other iconic Japanese developed characters would look like with that mindset? Actually I already know...

Veteran Sonic game designer Takashi Iizuka is overseeing the production of Sonic Boom, but main development is entirely in Western hands due to Sega's desire for Sonic to be more appealing to Western audiences.

Speaking with Polygon, Iizuka said the decision to give developer Big Red Button creative control over Sonic Boom and have Sanzaru Games work on the 3DS title was part of Sega's overarching plan to make a completely Westernized branch of the Sonic franchise.

"As part of completely thinking about the West, we wanted to make sure we had Western game developers and make it a part of Western television," Iizuka said. "We wanted to make sure it was developed best for Western audiences primarily; this was very important.

"The whole thing started with the television series," he added. "Our previous series, Sonic X, was made in Japan and influenced by Japanese anime; the main audience it was made for was in Japan, although it came to the West as well. So Sonic Boom is something made specifically for the Western audience. For the TV series to be successful, we pretty much had to make it for that audience, and the games tie into that strategy."

Sega of America producer Stephen Frost told Polygon that keeping Sonic Boom in Western studios was important for the projects' "synergy." Frost said Sega picked Big Red Button because its team — led by Uncharted and Jak and Daxter veteran Bob Rafei — had experience with character-driven adventure games.


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"As part of completely thinking about the West, we wanted to make sure we had Western game developers and make it a part of Western television," Iizuka said. "We wanted to make sure it was developed best for Western audiences primarily; this was very important.

Letting Western companies make Sonic games and cartoons is of course a brand new idea that has never been tried or been successful before, as the following transcript proves:

A Brief History of Sonic the Hedgehog


Sega of Japan: Look, we've made these two Sonic games and they've been really successful!

Sega of America: Even though the second one was made here, I don't think the kids of our country will like what you came up with. Sonic and his enemy need to have an origin story. How about... Robotnik was once a good guy until an accident with a rotten egg reversed his name?

Sega Europe: Oooh, can we join in? Let's take that story, and let the company that makes 2000AD and Buster make a comic as well! And maybe we could publish some children's novels too... "Sonic the Toaster"! Now there's an idea...

Sega of America: ... On second thoughts we don't care about that origin story idea any more. Hey, DiC, would you like to make a cartoon?

DiC Entertainment: Can we make TWO? (And then another one half a decade from now, for some reason.)

Archie Comics: Can we take one of those cartoons and make some comics based on it?

Sega of Japan: We don't know why you're doing this, we thought the stuff we came up with was fine as it was, but OK...


Sega of Japan: Dear Sega of America: Yuji and Naoto don't seem to want to make any more Sonic games, they're off daydreaming or firefighting or something. Would you like to make a Sonic game?

[sega Technical Institute ATTEMPTS to make a GAME. It DOESN'T WORK.]

Sega of Japan: ... OK, that didn't work. Would anyone else like to have a go?

Travellers Tales: OOOH, ME ME ME! I WOULD I WOULD!


Sega of America and Sega Europe:

Dear Sega of Japan,

Please can we go back to using your ideas now?

Thanks! :hug:

[Everyone LIKES THIS... at first. Then after a while they don't any more. It still makes lots of money though.]


Sega of Japan: Dear America, we're interested in seeing what fresh new twists on our characters you can come up with!

[NOBODY likes this at ALL.]

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Okay silly character designs aside is anyone really suggesting that letting a load of ex naughty dog developers have a crack at Sonic is in someway a bad thing?

I mean its not as if they can piss on the legacy anymore than Sonic Team have managed and I'd pay cash money for a Jak update...

This makes me part of the problem in the Sonic cycle right?

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People that post here are just too used to pissing on Sonic, is all. Not that I'm terribly happy about Boom, but I wasn't expecting classic Sonic to suddenly come back either. As oblivious as SEGA are to how much the fans old and new actually liked Generations or not.

We knew this was coming since last June.

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