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Rose are red,
Sonic is blue,
His new game on Saturn
Flushes Mario down the loo!

January 31st, 1997 -- Sega Europe Forget tokens of love, Valentine's Day will be the start of the biggest battle of the year. Sega is trumping rivals in the battle for gaming fans' hearts by bringing out the big guns with the launch of the first Sonic the Hedgehog game for the flagship Sega Saturn console on February 14th.

Sonic 3D - Flickies' Island for the mighty Saturn is being released two weeks before arch-competitor, Mario the plumber climbs out of a drain with a new game of his own. Sega is preparing to send Mario into the sewers as Sonic defends his crown as video gaming's King.

Sonic the Hedgehog is the highest earning video game start ever and his debut on the Saturn in Sonic 3D - Flickies' Island already has sufficient advance orders to take Sega's cool blue spiky character to the top of the charts at 'sonic' speed.

As a measure of Sonic's unceasing popularity, the character has generated sales in excess of 250 million British pounds (aprx. 378 million US dollars) across Europe since he was introduced in 1991 and sold over six million games.

Sega started the Sonic licensing program in 1992 and it continues to generate significant results. For example, 10 million cans of Sonic- branded soft drinks and more than one million boys underpants featuring the 'cool' character have been sold! There's even Sonic tinned pasta, pajamas, party cakes, biscuits and slippers.

More than one million Sonic the Hedgehog games were sold in his first year and when Sonic 2 was launched in 1992 over one million units were sold in just two months.

Sega anticipates significant sales of the new game: "There is no doubt that this is the best Sonic game we have ever created," comments Jo Bladen, Sega's UK Marketing Director, "it's an incredible game which will delight Sonic's army of fans - of all ages."

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