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Sega preparing ‘revival’ of legacy titles and franchises

/ 05:50 PM May 16, 2017
Sega

Most well-known for the “Sonic the Hedgehog” franchise, Sega is looking to revive major franchises. Image: Sega via AFP Relaxnews

Video game giant Sega is intending to carry out a “revival of major [intellectual properties],” it told investors, leaving fans to wonder what might be in store after surprise re-releases of “Bayonetta” and “Vanquish”.

Once a console manufacturer responsible for the Master System, Genesis (or Megadrive), Saturn and Dreamcast games machines, Sega became a software-only label in 2001.

But a quote from its “Road to 2020” investor briefing has fans dreaming of a return to the publisher’s golden age, after it announced a “revival of major IPs” as part of its strategy for boxed video games.

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Three of Sega’s five strategies to push its Packaged Game Field business were related to existing franchises in one way or another.

For context, Sega named four existing examples: PC battlefield commander “Total War: Warhammer”, console adventures “Persona 5” and “Yakuza 6”, and sports simulation “Football Manager 2017”.

As the Packaged Game Field was listed separately from digital games, amusement machines and facilities, animated series and toys, fans have begun to hope for full-on resurrections of cult favorite titles.

Expectations have been raised in recent months by the very welcome surprise release of cult favorite and former console exclusive “Bayonetta” for PC, a move which is to be followed by another kinetic action title, “Vanquish” towards the end of May.

With Sega’s catalog stretching back almost 40 years, there’s a lot to dream about, and several key franchises from the 1980s have remained active in recent years. “Space Harrier” landed on the Nintendo 3DS in 2013, “Phantasy Star Nova” arrived on PS Vita in 2014, and “Outrun” was preserved within “Yakuza 0” on PlayStations 3 and 4 in 2015, while a version of “Puyo Puyo” became a Nintendo Switch launch title in 2017.

It’s the prospect of revival that has some enthusiasts imagining a return to the titles and franchises that helped power Sega through the Master System, Genesis and Dreamcast years. Some of those have become relatively dormant, with revered action games like “Golden Axe” and “Streets of Rage”, and detailed adventures “Shining” and “Skies of Arcadia” notable among them. JB

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TAGS: Bayonetta, Sega, Sonic the Hedgehog, Yakuza
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