Microsoft talks whether Sonic is a core game or casual

I have to disagree with this statement. I think the whole gaming industry has lost face on what is ‘core’, ‘casual’ and ‘non-gamer’. I think that casual games can be a good thing. I mean Space Channel 5 was always meant to be a casual game, so was NiGHTS and Puyo Puyo. Non-gamer games are those workout games, aiming to people that don’t have interest in playing games.

“If you think about a game like Sonic the Hedgehog, in the old days, would you say Sonic was a core game or a casual game? It’s a mix between both. There isn’t some complicated set of controls to learn but it has all the gameplay skill and depth. If we’d never heard of Sonic the Hedgehog…and I’m like ‘we’ve got this awesome game, you’re this little blue hedgehog and you’re running around collecting golden rings’ you’d be like ‘that’s not a core game, where are the games for the core?’, and yet Sonic was a core game.”Kudo Tsunoda, Microsoft

Sonic and Mario were never core, they are designed with massive appeal and that is OK. Not every game has to be core. If it is designed to please hardcore and the casual gamers, that is fine. That still makes it casual.

[Source: Kombo]


14 responses to “Microsoft talks whether Sonic is a core game or casual

  1. crackdude says:

    More importantly, who gives a sh*t?

    Core and casual are the most subjective terms in gaming.

    As long as the games are good.

  2. George says:

    I think that is what it comes down to in the end. As long as a game is enjoyable, who cares?

  3. crackdude says:


    You gave SC5 as an example of a "casual" game because it was designed for a widespread audience. Still, you have to be pretty hardcore in that game to do well.

  4. George says:

    I gave SC5 an example because it was billed as 'Casual' by SEGA when it was coming out. I agree with it being designed as casual, but not all casual games means Nintendogs.

    Casual games are good, most arcade games are made for 'casuals' as in, easy to pick up and play, hard to master.

    Most of Kinect's line up is non gamer (fitness games).

  5. This whole argument is dumb. When the only game available was pong, was that a hardcore game by default?

  6. crackdude says:

    I'd say one paddle was hardcore, the other was casual.

  7. George says:

    As a industry grows, labels grow. Look at a films, same thing happen. What would you label some of the first films? Drama? Comedy? Etc?

    As the industry grows, so will the label. I think it has grown out of the: hardcore vs. casual. The line has blurred with games.

  8. Like how "action" isn't a specific enough genre for games anymore. It's kind of a joke. And when you break down what Role Playing Game means, almost every game is an RPG, because you play a role, from the little spaceship in Asteroids to Mario to Alys from Phantasy Star.

  9. Sega Stylista says:

    George, why are you still spouting this revisionist b.s.? You yourself recognized subconsciously its not true otherwise you wouldn't still be on this trying to convince yourself.

    SMB2 the Famicom game, for example, was *not* a casual game. It was hard as hell. Did Miyamoto make that for little childrens and families to play together? Hardly. It even said "For Super Players" right on the cartridge.

    A game's difficulty or complexity need not be necessarily determinants of its "core-ness"

    The point you are missing, George, is that Mario and Sonic were "old-school" gaming and essentially everything oldschool was by definition "hardcore" in the sense that it was drawing from a niche dedicated core gaming audience appeal first irregardless whether the game went on to have considerable mass apeal.

    old-school = hardcore

  10. George says:

    You are the one that does most of the labeling. SMB2 was a casual game. There is no rule that a casual game has to be easy.

    SMB2 was not complex, you run and jump. Both games, Mario and Sonic, fit in the terms that companies use as casual. A product for the mass market. Fact. You can cry all you want, just because its 'from 1992' does not make it less casual than something made with mass appeal in 2008.

    I think most of the mislabeling comes from gamers. Those that perceive themselves as 'more into gaming' than the general public. Sadly, both sides can enjoy games like Puyo Puyo or Tetris. Don't hate, just enjoy the games.

  11. Sybnios says:

    I agree a lot with Sega Stylista! Who says that a core game must be complex? About the definition old-school = hardcore I will also agree at about 95% 😉

    And saying all the above I don't hate, of course I enjoy most games casual and core but this two labels have to exist! Nowadays these terms have been altered and so people doesn't exactly know what hardcore games mean!

    i.e SEGA CD is a hardcore console and the majority of its games!

    But what you will hear from new age gamers is that Halo is a hardcore game. For me being a gamers since 1989 that is wrong.


  12. matty says:

    All I know is that Sonic 2 is much more difficult than Sonic 1. Maybe he meant something like getting the Emeralds were core while the general gameplay was not "casual", but accessible. I don't believe when game designers were making these games like Mario and Sonic that they had the word "core" or "casual" etched on their foreheads – sure, there were score attack games at arcades, but they were still accessible. They had to be if they wanted your money.

    The only people who should bother figuring out these definitions are PR and marketing dopes who don't know jack about games, anyway.

  13. matty says:

    Also, Sonic's hands look like delicious mushrooms there.

  14. matty says:

    *Er, 'scuse me: replace Sonic 1 with 2, and vice versa.

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