Former Sega Producer: Over-Ambition Killed Sonic Boom

A former Sega producer has opened up about the colossal failure that was Sonic Boom. Former Sega producer Steven Frost, speaking on the Sega Nerdcast, placed the blame on over-ambition. Also, the end of single player adventures starring the blue hedgehog might end.

“The biggest mistake in Boom was trying to cram too much into the game,” Frost explained. “Not only were we trying to make just a really good Sonic game, we were trying to add more to it. We overextended our grasp in some ways. We’re trying to add in a bungee mechanic, and we’re adding combat, and we’re adding puzzles, vehicles, hopefully a more compelling story and a bunch of different environments. And it’s just a lot, you know? If there’s any lesson for me, it’s that being too ambitious can be bad.”

Sonic Boom was pitched as a multimedia project by Sega. Both games, Rise of Lyric and Shattered Crystal, a TV show on Cartoon Network, a comic series by Archie Comics, and a toyline by Tomy are all part of the multimedia plan. Though the games were a total failure, the TV show and comic series have yet to be cancelled.

Frost also speculated that the blue hedgehog’s day of headlining his own games may be over. Single player games starring Sonic aren’t viable anymore, and that Sega will have to turn to co-op and multiplayer to keep the franchise alive.

Solo Sonic games, I don’t know how long that can last – there isn’t enough variety to sustain it. The future of Sonic games needs to be co-op,” he explained. “It worked really well in Sonic Boom, community and online play, that sustains it. In general, you need to do multiplayer and add online multiplayer aspects. That will sustain and keep the franchise alive.”

Now that Sonic and Sega are free from Nintendo exclusivity, it’ll be interesting to see what Sega does with Sonic. Sonic Boom was a new low for the franchise, so hopefully that means the only place Sonic can go is up.