A portion of Gamasutra interview with Sega’s Simon Jeffrey…
GS: For games like Sonic, where did the impetus come from, in terms of trying to reinvent that series? It feels like the last couple of tries have been trying to figure out where Sonic is supposed to be in this 3D world. Is that coming from the U.S. side or the Japan side right now?
SJ: I’d say it’s a combination of both. I think the Japanese side, at Sonic Team, have realized that old Sonic doesn’t really gel with today’s consumer and today’s kids especially. We needed to do something to make something more appealing. That, and the market’s gotten a lot more competitive, and Nintendo’s success recently has been outstanding. So it was a collaborative effort with western Sega and Sonic Team in Japan to do some reinvention.
Part of that reinvention is also being completely made in the west with stuff like Sonic Chronicles being built by BioWare on the DS. That was something we had to strongly petition to Japanese management to allow us to do, but when they did, it’s actually a great process.
GS: Here’s a ridiculous question that of course I must ask. Would Sega ever return to the console market?
SJ: No. A categorical no.