With no Virtual Console alternative at the time, the Nintendo Switch was lacking in old school games on the eShop. Among veteran third parties, Sega and developer M2 took up the mantle with their retro Sega Ages series for the platform, with a new game every month since September 2018. Games such as Alex Kidd in Miracle World, Sonic the Hedgehog, and Out Run since cemented themselves as must-haves for Switch owners in the West, but the same unfortunately cannot be said for their country of origin.
In an interview with Famitsu, Sega Ages senior producer Kagasei Shimomura noted that the series’ sales numbers in Japan actually amount to less than half of the preceding Sega 3D Classics Collection on Nintendo 3DS:
Honestly speaking the Japanese sales need to be better, and I take responsibility for that. This market is becoming more and more niche, and while each series being on different platforms means there is little point in directly comparing them, the reality is that sales are less than half of the 3D Classics Collection. Because this particular project will release games over a longer period than those packaged collections, we’d like [to] maintain a good relationship with players.
Shimomura assured readers that his team won’t quit working on Sega Ages, but it may be a while yet before the second wave of games will see launch. So far, the nascent Sega Ages is composed of popular titles from the Genesis, Master System, and arcade — Japanese gamers might find these redundant in light of the upcoming Mega Drive Mini.
Who knows? Perhaps Sega can regain that lost momentum once they finally get around to the Saturn and Dreamcast eras.