SEGA Looking To Corner The ‘Core’ Market

There are a few publishers, and developers I’ve really taken a notice to this past year. The first is Capcom. They’ve really taken their company to a whole new level compared to recent years past. Which is quite a feat, considering the state of the economy. Going into 2009, Capcom is releasing two brand new games based on their current running franchises (Resident Evil, and Street Fighter).

The other developer I’m watching keenly is SEGA. With what I consider four major releases in the first half of 2009, SEGA looks poised to have a strong year. MadWorld, The Conduit, Sonic & The Black Knight, and House of the Dead: Overkill are all releasing on the Wii under the SEGA name.

Looking at that lineup, there’s a good chance that I’ll be purchasing all of those games. Besides Punch-Out!, those four titles are what I’m looking forward to most in 2009 which is saying a lot considering all the games coming out this year.

If you listen to SEGA’s Alan Pritchard, and John Clark then you’d realize this isn’t by accident.

Another key element of your 2009 line-up is hardcore Wii titles. Do you feel core gamers are under-represented on Wii?

There have been some good hardcore Wii titles. Resident Evil 4 has done reasonable numbers; Red Steel has also performed really well. But since then, many publishers have migrated towards the more mass-market family titles, so perhaps there hasn’t been the array or depth of hardcore titles on Wii.

You’ve got a lot of new IP coming. Is this a new key focus for Sega?

It is a focus, because Sega could very easily be a publisher that brings just Football Manager, Virtua Tennis and Sonic to the market. But, to have a more rounded line-up, we need to look outside of our portfolio. New IP is a challenge, something that is only too evident with many recent titles underperforming – but it’s necessary.

Every publisher needs new IP. A balanced portfolio is vital for publishers to succeed, and non-licensed IP is a key part of that balance.

I don’t want to talk about the “hardcore” releases comment, as you can read my feelings on the terminology. What I do want to mention, is SEGA taking a chance in adopting these new IPs for the Nintendo Wii. It’s in my humble opinion that it’s pure genius. With so much crap, and repeated franchises on the Wii, SEGA has a chance to carve itself a nice little niche. Of course, success will be measured by financial gain but I believe that when the smoke clears they will all be good sellers. Not because they are “hardcore” or mature but because they will bring a breath of fresh air and hopefully take advantage of what makes the Nintendo Wii so great.

[via: mcvuk]


  • January 20, 2009 - 11:46 am | Permalink

    I am eagerly waiting the release of The Conduit. If it is half of what everyone thinks it is it is going to be the best game for the Wii.

    I’m not so excited about the Sonic game though. I have given up hoping they are good. I got excited for the last one and it really isn’t very good. Hopefully I’m wrong, but I have just completely lost hope.

  • JohnnyV
    January 20, 2009 - 11:57 am | Permalink

    @Nintendo Fan

    Yes, I eagerly await The Conduit as well. With a fully customizable UI, and control scheme, the customizing aspect looks to be a game in and of itself. I’m pretty stoked for Sonic and The Black Knight as well.

    I think Sonic and The Secret Rings got a bad wrap. Sure it wasn’t perfect but I thought it was a really fun game. It captured the speed of Sonic in a 3D setting, and I thought the controls were fun to utilize. It’s still the only game in existence to make me sweat besides Wii Fit (Final Boss).

  • January 20, 2009 - 1:43 pm | Permalink

    I agree with Fan, not too hyped on the Sonic game. But, Madworld, The Conduit and House of the Dead are all looking like must-haves. I think with High Voltage opening the door for how we want to play The Conduit is a huge step and larger developers would be wise to follow. There’s no reason why we can’t control the UI and HUD placement. Not sure why they seem to be the first to think of it, unless they aren’t.

  • JohnnyV
    January 20, 2009 - 2:03 pm | Permalink

    @ Mike

    I’m not sure about being first to customize UI on consoles, but I know many PC games have had customizable UI’s. I can’t remember a console title ever utilizing that feature. I can’t wait to play around with it.

  • January 20, 2009 - 2:31 pm | Permalink

    Yeah, I never got into PC gaming so, I couldn’t say for sure. I’ve never seen it on a console, that’s not to say it isn’t there though. I love the fact that you can save your setup and upload for others to use. Will be great to see what others can come up with.

  • Squa
    January 20, 2009 - 4:21 pm | Permalink

    I really can’t wait for Conduit, and as long as people it gets good reviews, I’ll pick that up right away. Madworld and House of Dead look cool and all, but I never got into extremely gory games.

    While Sonic and the Secret Rings was fun for a little it was definitely not worth a buy. It seems to me Sonic is trying to go toward Zelda, but I don’t think the two mix well at all. I mean, they had the werewolf thing, and now a sword. Maybe coincidence, but it’s just seems too weird.

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