As we've previously covered on this site, the astonishing success of Sonic the Hedgehog perhaps wasn't as well predicted as you might think by the people in charge at Sega of America.
Al Nilsen – Sega's Head of Marketing during the Genesis era – was lukewarm on the character initially before coming to love him, while Mark Cerny – who worked at Sega of Japan before founding Sega Technical Institute – reveals he was told by SoA that Sonic was "unsalvageable" at one stage.
Now, former Sega artist Yasushi Yamaguchi – famous for creating the character of Tails and credited with the roles of Character Design, Chief Artist and Zone Artist on Sonic 2 – has opened up about the disconnect between the development team and Sega of America, even after Sonic's commercially successful debut.
He later adds that even in Japan, Sega was guilty of poor management when it came to the franchise. "Sega in Japan also did not have a department to properly manage the characters until I returned to Japan and finished the development of the Sonic CD," he says (Yamaguchi is credited as Special Stage Designer on the Mega CD outing).