Sonic Frontiers is scheduled to hit the market in 2022, and according to Sega, a specific goal for the game is to get good ratings. Sonic Forces, Sonic Boom and Sonic Lost World were not particularly popular with either the trade press or the fans. Especially after the very popular titles Sonic Colors and Sonic Generations the next three major Sonic games were anything but popular. This should now change with Sonic Frontiers. This aspect was discussed in a recent Q&A session for investors and analysts.
Specifically, the question was raised as to whether Sonic Frontiers had specific goals in terms of review scores. In response to this question, current Sega Sammy CEO Haruki Satomi and CFO Koichi Fukazawa said: “We have set internal targets because the correlation between ratings and sales is very high in Europe and North America. If the game gets good ratings, then it can become a must-buy game, and thus possibly create a synergy with sales, which is why we are currently working hard on the quality of the game, which should be released for the holiday sales.“
How relevant are the ratings really?
While this train of thought makes perfect sense, there are voices in the industry who consider ratings to be significantly less important. We recently reported on Saber CEO Matthew Karch’s comments that ratings no longer sell games these days. What’s interesting is that even an average to below average rated game like Sonic Forces was a success according to Sega. At least that’s what the report for the third financial quarter of 2018 shows.
Similar influential to Sonic Adventure?
Sonic Frontiers is breaking new ground for the series with a targeted open-world concept. In our editorial team, there is a great deal of skepticism as to whether and how this concept can work successfully. Takashi Iizuka spoke of the goal of creating a similarly influential game as Sonic Adventure once did on the Dreamcast. So far, however, there is no real gameplay material for Sonic Frontiers that could demonstrate this influence.
In any case, the brand can currently look forward to great success at the box office. After all, Sonic the Hedgehog 2 is the most successful video game adaptation in US cinema history. In addition, a collection of old Sonic classics will be launched in June with Sonic Origins. So far, however, this has only made a name for itself with negative headlines about questionable special editions and the removal of individual Sonic classics from online stores.