Sonic the Hedgehog and Mario, or rather SEGA and Nintendo, were once the fiercest and most bitter of rivals, but these days the two companies and their respective mascots are on pretty good terms. During SEGA’s recent SXSW panel for the Sonic franchise’s 20th anniversary, Sonic lead programmer Yuji Naka revealed that Nintendo and SEGA were actually in talks to Mario/Sonic crossover game as early as 2004, but Shigeru Miyamoto actually reached out to the Sonic team much earlier than that. Later in the panel, Naka revealed that Shigeru Miyamoto “really wanted” to get Sonic into Super Smash Bros. Melee.
“The original Sonic becoming a part of the Smash Bros. game was also part of that conversation. During the GameCube development for Smash Bros., he really wanted to get Sonic into that game, but it was just too late in the development process and couldn’t get it in for GameCube, but they did move forward and put Sonic in for the Wii version.”
— Yuji Naka
Sonic is now a staple of the Super Smash Bros. series, but it’s hard to imagine that he almost made it into Melee. We had previously seen Miyamoto say he “liked the idea” of Sonic in Smash Bros. back in 2001, but it looks like there were more serious talks going on behind closed doors. Nintendo and SEGA would have discussing including Sonic in Smash while SEGA was still a first-party hardware developer, although the writing on the wall was apparent given Dreamcast’s poor sales. It looks like they managed to bury the hatchet from their 1990s feuding pretty quickly.