Yuji Naka interview by Dreamcast Magazine (January 22, 1999)
From Sonic Retro
Dreamcast Magazine: Many things happened last year. How was your 1998?
Yuji Naka: I was talking with my staff after completeting Sonic, and then I realized we released the Burning Rangers that year too. We did good, releasing two games in a year. 98 was probably my most constructive year. I was really satisfied that Sonic was the Big launch title and accomplished the standards of the game of the future. We didn’t have to comply with the hardware specs to express what we wanted to do. Unlike Nintendo’s Mario, we didn’t have a game to represent Sega. I wish Sonic would keep up the good sales and be representative of the Dreamcast.
Dreamcast Magazine: A month and a half passed since the Dreamcast launch. How do you feel about that?
Yuji Naka: I’m releaved that the Dreamcast sales is doing great. To say the truth, us, the Sonic team has a lot to do with the designing of the console. We held weekly meetings that lasted until late at night to discuss the console’s design, shape of the controller, graphics, and many more. I talked with Mr. Irimajiri about the internal modem, and made presentations of the network capabilities. Actually, we also produced the booting screen. Because we have so much to do with it, I just love Dreamcast. We did all that while making Sonic. So it was quite a hectic year. Considering we made the Irimajiri face demo and held Sonic presentations in August, I’m quite amazed we actually finished the game in time.
Dreamcast Magazine: What’s Sonic team’s theme of 1999?
Yuji Naka: Not that we don’t care about Japan, but the American version of Sonic is our main concern. Dreamcast will be released all over the world in September, so we have to make our webpages international. We’re thinking of doing an international ranking as well.
Dreamcast Magazine: What is your key word for thins year?
Yuji Naka: Last year, I said the new creation, hinting of Dreamcast. This year.....I wonder ....I guess it’s the development of the network system. From January to March, I will be providing an entertainment based on Sonic on the web. By downloading data, you can enjoy the same stages with different gimics.
Dreamcast Magazine: How motivated are you this year?
Yuji Naka: We’ll be doing networks, but we’ll be taking a break this year. Maybe we can present something around Christmas, but it may be hard.... We have already prepared the Sonic download for Christmas 99, so please wait on them.
Dreamcast Magazine: So Sonic Team will not be releasing any games this year?
Yuji Naka: Please have fun with Sonic. People often ask me if we are not making a sequel of Nights. But I think that a completely new game is more interesting than a sequel. Anyways, we now have a huge burden because we made Sonic, and people expect the next game to be better. As of now, we don’t have any games in our idea, so I’ll be taking a break overseas, and then think about it.
Dreamcast Magazine: What kind of dream do you want to achieve with Dreamcast?
Yuji Naka: I want to show a dream only the Sonic team could show.
- Original Interview at Angel Island Interviews.