Sega has had many successful and less successful mascots over the years (sorry, Alex Kidd, we know you tried), but few were as cool as Segata Sanshiro, the star of advertising for the Sega Saturn in the late 90s . Segata Sanshiro was a no-nonsense martial arts master who encouraged people to play Saturn games like Sonic R, Shining Force 3, and Burning rangers after beating her ass hard.
Segata Sanshiro had an amazing theme song and he was working on hauling (and beating) a giant white Sega Saturn around. Despite being short-lived, he’s rightly more famous among Sega fans than the endearing mascot of middle management, Hidekazu Yukawa, a manager from the Dreamcast era Receiving end Beatdowns from PlayStation-loving children in Japanese TV commercials.
The spirit of Segata Sanshiro is returning for Sega’s 60th anniversary. Meet Sega Shiro, a new company mascot with an important connection to Segata. Maito Fujioka, the actor who plays Sega Shiro, is the real son of actor Hiroshi Fujioka, who portrayed Segata Sanshiro. Hiroshi Fujioka is probably more famous for his role than the original Kamen driver Takeshi Hongo.
Sega Shiro’s intention with Sega is still somewhat mysterious. In his debut commercial, the pretty high schooler mostly appears and shouts “Sega dayo!” His outfit also includes a judo gi, who seems to be hanging over his shoulders, no doubt a reference to the character’s ancestor, Segata.
On the Sega website, the company states that “special content” is planned for June 3, 2020, the official 60th anniversary of the founding of Sega.