First Click: Mario or Sonic?

June 24th, 2016

15

The mascot wars turned 25 yesterday. On one side there's Mario, Nintendo’s squishy Italian plumber created by the legendary Sigeru Minamoto. On the other is Yuji Naka’s Sonic. The anthropomorphic blue hedgehog made his introduction on June 23rd, 1991, courtesy of Sega’s new Genesis console. Here’s how Rich McCormick remembered it:

"It was on this very day, 25 years ago, that the mascot war began in earnest. Nintendo's Mario — short, fat, improbably good at jumping — had seen off eggs, cavemen, and nondescript spaceship blobs in the late ‘80s and early ‘90s, but it was quickly clear there was something different about Sega's Sonic the Hedgehog. The way he tapped his foot if you took a break from the controller, the way he raised a quizzical eyebrow at the screen, the way he blazed through levels like he blazed past societal conventions. This hedgehog had attitude, and as anyone who lived through the era knows, attitude was the most important thing to have in the early 1990s."

To the wee Rich, the video game industry of 2016 would be unrecognizable. Yet both Mario and Sonic persevere. To whom does your allegiance lie?

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