Sega Rosso

From Sega Retro

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Sega Rosso
Founded: 2000-04-21[1]
Defunct: 2003-10-01[1]
Merged into: Hitmaker

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Sega Rosso (セガ・ロッソ) was a major development studio owned by Sega between 2000 and 2003. It was led by Kenji Sasaki.

At less than 40 staff[2][3], Sega Rosso was the smaller first-party studio serviced by Sega during this period. Sasaki and many of his peers had previously migrated from Namco (having worked on the original Ridge Racer), being part of Sega AM3 (working on Sega Rally Championship) and then AM Annex/AM12 during the 1990s[3]. In 1999, AM12 became Sega Software R&D Dept. 5 for a year[3] - Sega Rosso is the continuation of this effort.

As Sega was considered to be "blue" and "cool", Sasaki wanted to name the company after something "red" and "hot", eventually landing on "Sega Rosso" - rosso being the Italian word for red.[2] A core part of the company was dealing with racing games, though it branched off into other areas too. Many of its games did not leave Japan, making it one of the lesser known Sega companies of the era. It was also one of the last to get its own logo and identity, so often went uncredited as a studio.

Sega Rosso started with four development "lines"; Star Wars Racer Arcade, NASCAR Arcade, Cardcaptor Sakura: Tomoyo no Video Daisakusen and Cosmic Smash. It is most famous for starting Sega's series of arcade racing games based on the Initial D anime license.

In October 2003 the studio was merged into Hitmaker[4], creating an odd case where the PlayStation 2 game, Initial D: Special Stage credits Sega Rosso in its original release, but Hitmaker in the PlayStation 2 The Best budget range.



List of staff

Magazine articles

Main article: Sega Rosso/Magazine articles.

External links


Timeline of Sega of Japan research and development divisions