Could Sega be Making a Comeback? Project Needlemouse's Rise to Attention

A few months ago a little trailer was leaked out over the internet by none other the Sega, makers of the classic Sonic the Hedgehog series that, since its move to 3D, has seen many up and down responses from gamers in general. This trailer (found here) showcased a few brief teaser moments of classic Sonic sound effects and a blue blur.

Fans, as usual, went nuts. Forums lit up, questioning about the game and hoping for the return of one element or another. But here's the part that no one knew: Needlemouse was nothing more then a vague idea and the trailer, at least, according to this report.

So what was Sega really up too? Well, Needlemouse is now in development, according to Sega, but after almost two months of solid fan-response feedback to the initial teaser. I'd bet that they were watching that fan feedback very closely and what is now in development is very focused towards what the friends have asked for. Granted, it's just a theory, but the clincher for this it was with today's announcement here where fans have been asked to answer old-school trivia questions to narrow down a list of characters to the final set. I'd bet money that the character list hasn't even been finalized.

So why was this worth a post? Well, the way I see it, Sega hasn't made a move this intelligent in a long time. Traditionally Sega has just presented its buyers with a product: buy it or not. Here, Sega's looks as uf it's using its fans to guide the development process of its flagship game. Risky? Yes. But ultimately, and hopefully fulfilling.

As a side note, this trailer had me and my roommates grinning. We couldn't help it. World of Warcraft never caught me, but this one might. Because, well, its Lego. What could be better?

1 comment:

Time Enforcer Anubis said...

I'm very excited for Project Needlemouse, but here's the thing:

Asking the fans what they want is a good way to get ideas that will be popular with the fans, however the thing about that is, not every idea that comes from the fans is A: Good, or B: Feasible programing-wise, or C: Marketable.

It's that, and the fact that not every fan's gonna agree on which elements from which game are good. Was the Sonic 2 special stage the best, or was the Sonic 3 one the best? Were Sonic 1's boss acts or were Sonic 2/3's bosses after the 2nd act better?

Basically, what I'm hoping is that Sega makes good decisions and introduces some new elements, moving the series forward. No matter what they do, some fans will be disappointed, but as long as it's a good game, the people who want it will get it.

The Sonic fandom is hit-or-miss, at best. I know a lot of Sonic fans would crucify me for mentioning that I enjoyed Sonic '06. I'm just hoping Sega does the right with Needlemouse and, instead of making a current-gen Sonic 3, continue moving the series forward.