Sonic the Hedgehog is arguably SEGA’s most renowned franchise, something that’s reflected quite clearly in its lifetime sales. In their annual investors report, SEGA has revealed the blue hedgehog and his companions have racked up 1.14 billion copies sold.
Sonic’s journey began in 1991 on the SEGA Genesis. He’s since made appearances on many platforms, although his last PlayStation outing was Team Sonic Racing last year. Between digital sales and free-to-play downloads, the hedgehog shifted over 200 million units in 2020, pushing it over the 1 billion mark this year. The infamous live-action CGI movie likely raised Sonic’s profile amongst the younger generation of gamers.
Some of SEGA’s other notable names have also had an encouraging year. The release of Yakuza: Like a Dragon has helped push the franchise over 14 million lifetime sales; those titles sold 2 million units since 2019. The Persona series increased to 13.1 million lifetime sales as Persona 5 Royale hit PlayStation 4; this is 2.9 million more units than last year. Meanwhile, PuyoPuyo looked towards other platforms for sales in 2020. It managed to increase its lifetime figures by 3 million, reaching a total of 32 million units.
Other franchises that got a mention included the New Sakura Wars franchise. This increased slightly to reach 4.1 million units thanks to the first new game in the franchise for 14 years. There was also the Megami Tensei series, which remained at 17.4 million lifetime sales over the past year despite the release of Shin Megami Tensei III Nocturne HD Remaster in October.
SEGA will plan to continue riding this wave of success into 2021. The upcoming Puyo Puyo Tetris 2 will help things along, as will the official Olympics game. Only time will tell what they have planned for Sonic, although I’ll be surprised if they don’t have anything in the works to mark his 30th anniversary. Whether this is a new game or the upcoming movie sequel remains to be seen.