Sega

From the Audiovisual Identity Database, the motion graphics museum

Background

Sega was originally founded in 1940 as "Standard Games" in Honolulu, Hawaii to provide amusement games to US military facilities across Hawaii. The company was then moved to Tokyo, Japan by Raymond Lemaire and Richard Stewart as a means of distributing coin-operated games and was renamed "Service Games". In later years the company would become "Sega" (an abbreviation for "Service Games"), its current identity. Sega would soon become an immediate competitor to Nintendo right after they started manufacturing video game consoles (such as the Genesis, Sega Master System, etc.) and came up with their own iconic mascot Sonic the Hedgehog. As of today, Sega is still active.

Note: There are over a hundred different variants of this logo, all of which are covered by The Ultimate Sega Logo Compilation, but it has always retained the same basic design. This page focuses on Sega's main logos.



1st Logo (Still variants) (December 1981- )

Visuals: On a white background is the blue Sega logo in its futuristic striped font. The animation varies depending on the game. Starting in the late 1990s, the "TM" symbol is changed into the registered trademark symbol.

Variants:

  • Sometimes, the logo appears on the title screen on numerous arcade games.
  • The 16-bit version of Sonic the Hedgehog and the unreleased arcade game SegaSonic Bros. have a light blue line moving around showing parts of the Sega logo, before it fades in. This is also seen on some prototypes of the 16-bit version of Sonic the Hedgehog 2.
  • The Game Gear version of Sonic the Hedgehog, the 16-bit version of Sonic the Hedgehog 2, and Sonic the Hedgehog 4: Episode I have Sonic (the company's mascot) running around forming the logo. This can also be seen on Japanese Sonic commercials in the early 1990s, albeit in stop-motion.
  • On the Game Gear, the logo is in 8-bit.
  • On some Game Gear games, the background is blue.
  • On Columns for the Sharp X1, the logo is shown shining.
  • On Sonic the Hedgehog 3, Sonic and Knuckles, Sonic 3 and Knuckles (including both the Sonic Origins and Sonic Origins Plus ports of the latter) and Sonic Mania, the logo just fades in. However, there are different endings for all of those games.
  • On Sonic Mania, the logo is slightly brighter. It is also enhanced as well.
  • Starting in 1994, the text "PRESENTED BY" is shown above the logo.
  • A light blue variation of the logo exists on Japanese and Asian versions of Sega titles.
  • On the original PC port of Sonic Adventure DX: Director's Cut, the logo is on a white background and the view is resized by the screen resolution (the bigger the resolution is, the smaller the logo gets) unless the fill modes under "UI Scaling" (in the graphics tab in SADX Mod Loader) was set to "Fit" or "Fill" with the loader installed.
  • On the American Nintendo DS games of Mario & Sonic at the Olympic Games and Mario & Sonic at the Olympic Winter Games, "Published and developed by" is shown above the logo.
  • On the 2011 remake of Sonic CD for the PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, PC, Android and iOS, the logo is on a dark blue background.
  • On Sonic the Hedgehog 4: Episode II, both Sonic and Tails run around, forming the Sega logo.
  • On Sonic Forces, the logo is zoomed out further than usual. "Presented by" is not above the logo.
  • On Puyo Puyo Tetris 2, "Presented by" is not above the logo.
  • On Sonic Shuffle, "Presented by" is in the same font as the Dreamcast logo.
  • On Rhythm Tengoku for the Sega Naomi, "Presented by" is in a different font, and is colored light blue.

Technique: Depends on the variant.

Audio: On many games, a choir singing "Se-ga!". This particular soundbite made its first appearance on Japanese advertisements for the SG-1000 (which was Sega's first console) back in 1983.

Audio Variants:

  • Sonic Mega Collection, Sonic Gems Collection, the 2011 remake of Sonic CD and Hell Yeah! Wrath of the Dead Rabbit use the Sega jingle. It's also enhanced in quality.
  • The Hatsune Miku: Project Diva series has Miku or her other Vocaloid friends yelling "Sega!".
  • K-On! Houkago Live!! has lead character Yui (voiced by Aki Toyosaki) yelling "Sega!".
  • Sonic Adventure for the Sega Dreamcast has one of the characters in the game say "Sega." It changes each time the game starts up.
  • Three of the games in the Puyo Puyo series, Puyo Puyo!! 20th Anniversary, Puyo Puyo Tetris and Puyo Puyo Chronicle, has one of the characters in those games say "Sega", which changes each time the game starts up.
  • Since 2018, a dramatic electronic synth with an echo effect from the 13th logo ("Amazing Sega") is used.

Availability:

  • The logo first appeared on arcade games since 1981, starting with the 1981 Sega edition of Tactician.
  • The logo appears on Master System games from 1987 to 1989, when running on a Japanese console, as well as the startups of the Master System II that featured the built-in games of Alex Kidd in Miracle World and Sonic the Hedgehog.
  • The animated logo first seen on Columns for the Sharp X1, but it's best known for its appearance on the Sonic the Hedgehog games, including the first three games (Sonic the Hedgehog, Sonic the Hedgehog 2, and Sonic the Hedgehog 3), as well as several others.
  • This also appeared on most Sonic games, such as Sonic Adventure, Sonic Adventure 2, Sonic Heroes, Sonic Advance, and Sonic Forces, as well as their latest game Sonic Frontiers.
  • This also appears on the cancelled Sonic DS demo.
  • This logo also appears on a majority of arcade games produced by Sega such as OutRun, After Burner, Daytona USA, as well as the Initial D: Arcade Stage franchise.
  • The "Amazing Sega" sound variant can be heard on newer games that are released by the company after 2018, including rereleases of older games (such as Shenmue I&II, Super Monkey Ball Banana Blitz HD and Banana Mania, the global release of Phantasy Star Online 2, and Sonic Colors: Ultimate) and ports/remakes of games in the Like A Dragon franchise (formerly known as Yakuza).

Legacy: This logo, along with the jingle, is a favorite among gamers.

2nd Logo (1983-1987)

Visuals: On a black background is the Sega logo in blue that shimmers.

Variant: Depending on the game, the colors may vary.

Technique: 2D sprite animation.

Audio: None, or the opening theme of the game.

Availability: Seen on many SG-1000 games from the period, like Choplifter, H.E.R.O., Bank Panic and Chack'n Pop, among others.

3rd Logo (1987-1989)

Visuals: On a blue background is the Sega logo in black. The color then changes and flashes.

Technique: 2D sprite animation.

Audio: None, or the opening theme of the game.

Availability: Seen on numerous Master System games when playing on a Japanese console, such as Dynamite Duke, Bomber Raid and Gain Ground', among others.

4th Logo (October 29, 1988-1998, June 22, 2017-)

Visuals: There is the Sega logo in its futuristic font (which is in blue and contains many white stripes around it) on a black background. On most games, the logo "shines" by having the color change in shades of blue.

Variants: This logo has a lot of variations, but below are some variants for the regular logo:

  • In its early days since until 1991, the registered trademark symbol "®" symbol was used. Starting around late 1990, the "TM" symbol replaces the registered trademark "®" symbol.
  • Sometimes, the logo lacks the trademark symbol.
  • On games published or developed by Virgin Interactive Entertainment, the Sega logo shines quickly in a loop.
  • On mobile games under the Sega Forever series, the modern logo appears on-screen first, then it disintegrates into pixels that float away to the top right to reveal this logo, which shines after.

Technique: 16-bit animation. Sometimes, the logo fades in and/or fades out.

Audio: None or the opening theme of the game.

Audio Variants:

  • On The Story of Thor (Known as Beyond Oasis in the US), the SEGA choir plays after the logo shines.
  • On games produced by Infogrames (except for The Smurfs 2) and Tinhead, the SEGA choir plays is in the form of a two-note jingle.
  • The Sega Forever variant has the Sonic ring loss sound effect, followed by the SEGA choir.

Availability: Seen on most games for the Sega Mega Drive/Genesis like Altered Beast. Also appears on some games for the Sega Game Gear (and the Sega 32X attachment for the Genesis/Mega Drive).

  • Some of the only games not to use this logo were most Sega Master System games and every Electronic Arts, Namco, Codemasters and Tengen game for Sega Genesis (including EA Sports games as well), as well as the earliest Accolade licensed Genesis titles, including Bubsy in the Claws Encounters of the Furred Kind.
  • One EA Genesis game that contains the logo is Shaq Fu, while Baku Baku Animal, Bonkers Wax Up!, Daffy Duck in Hollywood, Double Dragon, Lemmings, Sonic Blast, Streets of Rage, Ultimate Soccer and Virtual Fighter Animation were the only Sega Master System games that contain the logo.
  • The logo can be also seen on EA Game Gear games.
  • It is generally left intact in most re-releases of Sega games of the time period like on Wii Virtual Console re-releases of Genesis games.
  • The logo also appears in the prototype of Sonic the Hedgehog on the Sega Genesis.

5th Logo (1989)

Visuals: On a black background is a modified version of the Sega logo (thinner than the current one in white with Sega, a blue outline and with still shines on the "S" and "A"). COMPUTER SOFTWARE is beneath in the same color with "© 1989" in red and yellow below. "PROGRAM LOADING..." is on the bottom of the logo in the same color as the first two texts.

Technique: A sprite graphic.

Audio: None or the music of the game.

Availability: Only seen on IBM PC ports of After Burner II, Space Harrier, and OutRun.

6th Logo (Sonic CD prototypes custom variant) (December 4, 1992-1993?)

Visuals: On a black background, there is a 3D version of the Sega Video logo.

Technique: A CGI render.

Audio: The "SEGA" chant.

Availability: Seen on early prototypes of Sonic The Hedgehog CD.

7th Logo (Ecco series custom variant) (August 25, 1994-December 13, 1996)

Visuals: There is the Sega logo in a grayish-blue underwater background with bubbles floating toward the surface.

Variant: On Ecco the Dolphin (PC), "PRESENTS a PC Conversion by" is below the logo. The background is also more realistic and is rippling.

Technique: 16-bit animation.

Availability: Seen on Ecco: The Tides of Time for the Mega Drive/Genesis, as well as Ecco the Dolphin for the PC.

8th Logo (Knuckles' Chaotix custom variant) (December 27, 1994-June 1995)


Visuals: On a purple space background, the Sega logo zooms into the screen, then goes back while "wiggling" like Jell-O. The logo then zooms into the screen again while going black.

Technique: 32-bit animation.

Prototype Variant: On prototype 1227-0119 of the game, the background is a CGI-like rendering of Newtrogic High Zone.

Audio: None, but on the prototypes there are 2 different sound variations:

  • Prototype 0202 has a long synth-like sound.
  • Prototype 0208-0216 had a redone version of the sound, sounding like a synth rendition of the SEGA chant, but suspiciously like the NBC chimes.

Availability: Only seen on Knuckles' Chaotix for the 32X add-on. It hasn't been ported since its release in April 1995, through the game has been rereleased once through GameTap for a brief period in 2007.

9th Logo (Sakura Wars custom variant) (February 24-September 21, 2000)


Visuals: On a black background, there are some cherry petals that float up into the sky with the Sega logo fading in which briefly turns pink for a moment before it transitions to its blue color.

Variants:

  • On Ogami Ichirou Funtouki, the "Presented by” text is shown seconds after the Sega logo is formed but in a different font.
  • On the Dreamcast ports of Sakura Wars and Sakura Wars 2, the final portion of the logo was reanimated to add the "Presented by" text atop the Sega logo.

Technique: CGI animation.

Audio: A gentle electronic theme.

Availability: Only seen on Sakura Wars-related games for Dreamcast such as Ogami Ichirou Funtouki and ports of Sakura Wars and Sakura Wars 2 for said system as well as Sakura Wars-related material released during that period such as VHS, DVD and LaserDisc releases of the 2000 anime.

10th Logo (Yakuza custom variant) (December 8, 2005-September 15, 2006)


Visuals: There is a grid, resembling airport-like lettering. Then, the words "WHAT DO YOU WANT?" appear. Shortly after that, the screen moves horizontally when the word "DREAM" appear. Then, the screen moves vertically again as the word "EXCITEMENT?" appears. Shortly after that, the arrows appear moving until the word "AND" appears. The word later turns upside down while a heart is shown. Then, the words "I GIVE IT" appear. After that, the words "I AM" appear before panning down to reveal the word "SEGA" in cursive-style lettering. The grid disappears while the Sega logo appears on the bottom with the words "Presented by" being located on the left of the logo.

Technique: A mix of CGI and 128-bit animation.

Audio: An upbeat electronic theme.

Availability: Seen on Yakuza for the PlayStation 2.

11th Logo (Yakuza 2 custom variant) (December 7, 2006-September 19, 2008)


Visuals: On a white background, there is a brush, which is never seen writing out the word "SEGA" in Japanese calligraphy-style lettering. After the letters are written, a red stamp is placed on the bottom of the A. Then, the background turns into a flag as it flies to the right. Then, the Sega logo is shown in the same format as how it was shown in the first Yakuza game.

Technique: CGI animation.

Audio: Rock music.

Availability: Seen on Yakuza 2 for the PlayStation 2.

12th Logo (November 14, 2006-October 12, 2017)


Visuals: On a black background, several trails of different colored lights move across the screen at a rapid pace, which come together and form the Sega logo.

Variants:

  • A light blue variation also exists on Japanese and Asian versions of Sega titles. However, this variant had a much brighter Sega logo than their print logo in Asia.
  • On Alpha Protocol, a red streak runs through the formed logo, coloring it golden. The classic SEGA choir is heard.
  • On The Conduit is several circles adjusting around the pyramid with the Eye of Providence above. They match and form "SEGA", which shines and reveals as a regular logo. The whoosh and the announcer are heard as well.
  • On Iron Man 2 for the PSP, a blue spot lights on and creates blocks which form the computerized Sega logo.
  • There's an early variation of the logo after it's fully formed the words "Presented by" appears on top of the logo.
  • A still variant exists, but in the remake of Castle of Illusion Starring Mickey Mouse, the whoosh and the announcer is heard as well.
  • An in-credit version also exists.

Technique: CGI.

Audio: A synth whooshing while the logo forms, followed by a male announcer saying the company name.

Audio Variants:

  • In the North American, European and Australian versions of Samba De Amigo for the Wii, a male announcer says the company name then chuckles after the logo forms, just like in the original games, as well as the Japanese version, but without saying "Presented by" or "Produced by" before that.
  • In Bleach: Versus Crusade, Ichigo Kurosaki (voiced by Masakazu Morita) yells the company name after the logo forms.

Availability:

  • Used along with the 4th logo, mainly for external publishing, besides some games in Japan.
  • Seen on several games such as Sonic games like Sonic the Hedgehog (2006), Sonic and the Secret Rings, Sonic Riders: Zero Gravity, Sonic Unleashed, Sonic and the Black Knight, Sonic Colors, Sonic Free Riders, Sonic Generations, Sonic Lost World, and Sonic Boom: Rise of Lyric, as well as other games such as, The Incredible Hulk, Alpha Protocol, The Club, Iron Man, Valkyria Chronicles and its sequel, Super Monkey Ball: Step & Roll and The House of Dead 4.

13th Logo (Amazing Sega) (May 18, 2017- )


Visuals: There is a close zoom-in of a person's blue eye at an angle in front of a white background. We can see the North American & European Sega logo reflected inside of the eye, upon which the logo rotates to the right. As the Sega logo gradually comes to a stop, the eye widens in size and the pupil grows larger. In the static version, used for its games, the static Sega logo appears (see 4th logo).

Trivia: This logo was introduced as part of a new "Amazing Sega" corporate identity introduced by the company. The concept for this identity (and by extension, the logo) is based on studies based on the eye being the first part of the body to respond to an "amazing" experience. However, a static Sega logo is used in games instead.

Technique: Seems to be a mix of live-action and CGI effects. A digital graphic for the static version.

Audio: A rising droning sound, promptly followed by a dramatic electronic synth with an echo effect. For the games, just the synth is heard, but with a somewhat different echo, similar to the start of each trailer.

Availability: It appears in future Sega games going forward at the end of each trailer and commercial, replacing the previous logo. It was first seen on the Sonic Forces story trailer.

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