Wave goodbye to the likes of Sonic Unleashed, because from now on you’ll only be able to get them from the pre-owned section.
Sega is delisting a number of Sonic the Hedgehog games, thereby removing them from retailer’s shelves, in order to strengthen the brand and prevent any confusion among consumers when Sonic Colors and Sonic Free Riders are released later in the year.
Any Sonic game with an “average” Metacritic score – presumably anything lower than 75 – is being dropped, leaving only a handful of games still standing. When you factor in the age of most of the “surviving” games, it’s likely that only Sonic & Sega All Star Racing and Sonic’s Ultimate Genesis Collection – which is only nominally a Sonic game anyway – will still be available to purchase new.
Jurgen Post, Sega’s senior vice president for the Europe, Middle East and Africa territories, said that the delisting would be very important when more big Sonic games were released. He said that Sega could make a lot of money on Sonic back catalogue titles, but didn’t want to run into problems of cannibalizing its own sales.
It’s really hard to see this as anything other than a smart move, especially as it’s not the poorly selling Sonic games that Sega is removing, it’s the poorly reviewed ones. If you’re trying to revitalize a brand, distancing it from the things that brought it down in the first place is a great idea.