Sega bosses want Sonic The Hedgehog to "surpass" Mario.

The gaming giant has long been competing with Nintendo after launching its own rival mascot over three decades ago, and now sneior senior executive Osamu Ohashi has admitted he still has high hopes for the super speedy blue character.

He told the official Sega website: "Simply put, I want to surpass Mario. Sonic is a game that was originally developed to compete with Mario, and it still hasn’t achieved that goal.

"Our goal is to catch up and surpass Mario because we respect Mario.

"I want people to play it all over the world, including Japan, like Mario, and I want the movie to be a bigger hit than Mario.

"I would like USJ [Universal Studios Japan] to create a ‘Sonic Area’ as well. That’s our goal for those of us who love Sonic."

His translated comments were made as part of a recruitment drive for new staff in Japan.

He also got asked about the difference between creating a game to be a success in Japan compared to a hit all over the world.

He said: "I think the definition of an interesting game remains essentially the same. However, it is true that the same thing is perceived differently depending on the country.

"For example, there was a time when the word ‘cute’ in Japan was perceived as ‘childish’ overseas. Although ‘kawaii’ is now being accepted overseas, it is not all about what we feel.

"On the other hand, even if people overseas think something is cute, it may not be very popular in Japan. It would be great if we could honestly accept these differences in sensibilities and utilise them in making games."

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