And yet, since Sega slithered out of the hardware game, and retreated into its subterranean cranny, it has - for the past 20 years or so - revisited those franchises in only the most tentative ways. Admittedly, Sonic has reappeared continually, to ever more depressing effect... albeit until the release of Sonic Mania a couple of years ago, where it looked as if Sega was finally going to honour its past, and begin scooping some of its ever-gestating "taddies" back into the pond.
Hope was high that the reception which greeted Sonic Mania would encourage Sega to revisit some of its other most popular franchises.
Here in the space-year 2019AD, we might be seeing the fruits of that; the Sega Ages line has reintroduced some of its greatest franchises, and we've a new Streets of Rage, Super Monkey Ball, Phantasy Star, and a remake of Panzer Dragoon, on the way.
But Sega, for the most part, continues to be a real weirdo in terms of the baskets it chooses.
I still find it jarring to visit Sega's website and see its most prominent listed franchises as Alien Isolation, Football Manager and Total War. That's not to knock the popularity of any of the series, but they just don't feel like Sega games to me.
And, indeed, judging from the reaction to Sega's latest announcement, Sega continues to avoid giving its most hardcore fans that which they desire most...