Yuji Naka, the programmer behind the original Sonic the Hedgehog game for the SEGA Mega Drive, has revealed he is "pleasantly surprised" the iconic video game character remains popular to this day.

Speaking to GAME at last weekend's Summer of Sonic event, Naka reflected on Sonic's ongoing popularity: "Since the creation of the first, original Sonic, the intention was to solely sell in the US. It's fantastic that it has sold so well and it has exceeded our initial expectations. It really is great that it has sold so well, you always make a game hoping to sell as many copies as possible but we weren't prepared for this!

"It's been fantastic working with everybody over these years, and the fans continue to be supportive. Sonic is a very successful character, it's almost like he is walking independent from us and the company as well. It makes me very happy and I am also pleasantly surprised that Sonic has continued for these 20 years."

Sonic's not quite made it work in 3D, but back in the day he was a force to be reckoned with. Read Martin's Sonic and Me article to see just how it influenced him.