Sega published the transcript of the Q&A recently hosted during its latest financial conference call for investors and analysts, with CEO Haruki Satomi and CFO Koichi Fukazawa discussing the company’s business, the Persona series, and the sales of Sonic Superstars.
The document shared by the company in Japanese reports a question about Sonic Superstars (which you can purchase on Amazon if you so wish) sales being slower than expected.
Sega’s executives believe there has been a significant impact due to competition from games by other companies, but the plan is to strengthen promotion for the Holiday season with a focus on the overseas markets.
Since the Metacritic score both on the critics and the users sides is higher than Sonic Frontiers, the hope is that the game will continue to enjoy steady sales.
Moving on to mobile games, due to the upcoming closure of 404 Game Re:Set, the executives acknowledged that the Japanese mobile market has matured and creating hit games is difficult.
On the other hand, games like Hatsune Miku: Colorful Stage! and One Piece Bounty Rush (published by Bandai Namco but developed by Sega) are performing well.
In the future, Sega intends to strengthen the global development of existing popular games and focus on the global expansion of free-to-play games like Persona 5: The Phantom X and Rovio’s games.
This is interesting, as it possibly hints at a global release of the mobile Persona game, which could land in other markets besides China and Japan.
Speaking of Sega’s Japanese studios, we hear that Sega has been successful in expanding its sales by launching games on multiple platforms and simultaneously worldwide in the past few years.
On top of that, the company has integrated development teams that were previously working on separate devices (consoles, arcades, and smartphones), flexibly allocating development resources whole taking advantage of the strengths of each team. These efforts have led to positive results.
Speaking of multiplatform, Sega has increased the platforms for Persona 5 and the regions in which it is available, which has been causing an increase in sales.
Answering a direct question on whether it’d be possible for a Persona game to sell 5 million copies in the first year, the executives mentioned that they believe that goal is possible for mainstream Persona games like the next numbered game via a simultaneous worldwide multiplatform release from the beginning.
They also added that they have high expectations for Atlus’ new IP Metaphor ReFantazio.
Lastly, answering a question about increasing development costs, we hear that, to improve business efficiency, Sega is researching automation technologies. They have introduced ChatGPT-4 in a closed environment within the company and all employees in Japan can use it for various tasks.
Sega also hopes to use generative AI effectively, while considering the development of related legislation and the needs of customers.
In other Sega news, the company’s COO recently dismissed the possibility of an acquisition by Microsoft.
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