In a Q&A with investors, SEGA’s parent company, SEGA Sammy Holdings, appeared confident with the sales scheme of Sonic Frontiers.
The hedgehog’s latest mainline game recorded a strong financial performance, and it was well received by fans despite an admittedly lower Metacritic score.
The company is expected to double down on Frontiers in the long term based on strategies like pricing, and promotions; as well as a commitment to large scale projects and repeat sales through free downloadable content.
Manual translation of the major points from the Q&A, courtesy of the Tails’ Channel web team, follows:
Rating the quality of Sonic Frontiers
Q: While the Metacritic score for Sonic Frontiers was not as high as it was hoped, we know that it was well received by fans. How do you evaluate the quality of this title?
A: It’s true that the Metacritic Score was slightly lower than we expected, but the user’s score was very high. With that, we believe we have found a title that is widely accepted by a lot of people around the world. It’s to be believed that we can build more repeat sales of Sonic Frontiers through pricing, discounts and the recently announced DLC. We plan to further promote the Sonic franchise in the future, such as the release of Sonic Prime, the third Sonic film, and merchandising opportunities.
The game’s sales strategy
Q: Even though you have done sales for Sonic Frontiers, the average unit price has not decreased that much. Please tell us about your future sales strategy.
A: We are proceeding with this title based on a strategic sales plan. We conducted intensive promotions around the November release, and as announced recently, we have been able to achieve good results so far. A temporary sale was held around Black Friday, but the selling price has since returned to normal. We have been able to achieve these results while maintaining a certain level of quality, and the number of units sold greatly exceeded our original estimation. We will continue to sell over the long term based on sales strategies such as pricing, promotions, and the development of further DLC.
Will SEGA commit to large-scale projects like Frontiers in the future?
Q: With the strong performance of Sonic Frontiers and other global titles, will you be focusing more on products like it in the future?
A: We expect development costs for new titles to grow even larger in the future. We will strive to ensure solid quality in the development of major titles from our existing franchises. However, development labour costs will rise due to the impact of the global external environment, and we expect this trend to continue for the foreseeable future. Since it is necessary to take on these challenges for major titles, we are proceeding with a bigger budget, even from the basic research stage. Therefore, we assume that development costs for future new titles will increase accordingly.
Generating repeat sales
Q: Considering your earnings forecast for this fiscal year and the current market environment, I assume that there will be a lot of uncertainty about the next fiscal year. How are you planning to increase repeat sales during the current term, and what’s the status of the new titles?
A: Since there were many new titles in the previous fiscal year, we took on a strategy of repeat sales in our plan coming into this fiscal year, and it continues to fall short of our forecasts. On the other hand, despite the not-so-favourable market environment, we were able to maintain the same level of repeat sales as in the previous fiscal year. We believe that the prospects are clear to some extent, given that titles that have performed well this term, such as Sonic Frontiers, and with the upcoming DLC, we believe that its’ sales will increase even further. We are also considering sales strategies. New works are scheduled for the Like a Dragon series, HYENAS, and more. Please keep your eyes open for upcoming titles.