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Sega says Sonic Superstars had a ‘weaker start than anticipated’

Sega has stated that Sonic Superstars didn’t sell as well as it had hoped during its release period.

During a financial results briefing presentation held this month, Sega Sammy Holdings president and group CEO Haruki Satomi said the game had a weaker start than Sega had planned, but hoped that things would eventually pick up.

“Sonic Superstars was released in October, which is a slightly weaker start than we had anticipated,” Satomi said.

“But in reality, when Sonic IP sells the most is mainly November to December, and more than 90% of this title’s marketing cost will be spent in the Thanksgiving and holiday season from November onwards.

“Although in the financial results announced today, we are forecasting this title’s sales slightly weaker with the view of the status of start mentioned above, we plan to continue our marketing efforts to sell on the same level as Sonic Frontiers.”

In a Q&A session following the presentation, Satomi was asked why he felt Sonic Superstars sales had been lower than expected.

Satomi replied that the game had been released during a busy period, but that he was hopeful it would continue to sell because of the generally positive reception from critics and players.

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“We believe that the impact of other companies’ major title[s] released at the same time is significant, but we plan to expand the promotion towards the holiday season, especially in the overseas market,” Satomi said.

“Both the Metacritic score and user score are higher than Sonic Frontiers, and we would like to continue to sell firmly.”

Sonic Superstars has a Metacritic score of 76 on Xbox Series X/S, 73 on PS5 and 71 on Switch, as well as an average user rating of 8.8 out of 10.

VGC’s Sonic Superstars review called the game “the Sonic 4 fans deserve”, saying it “absolutely nails the classic 16-bit Sonic gameplay”.

However, the game was released just three days before Super Mario Bros Wonder, whch currently has a Metacritic score of 92.

As such, the two ’90s rivals coming head-to-head again with such close releases has potentially resulted in a slower start for Sonic’s game, as many Switch owners may have chosen to buy Mario’s title first.