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The last time that Sonic and Angry Birds teamed up

Thanks to cross-promotion deals between the two friendly companies, today's Rovio and Sega deal isn’t without precedent
The last time that Sonic and Angry Birds teamed up

The big news at the moment is, of course, the acquisition of Rovio by Sega with both parties clearly seeing benefits in getting together. But it may surprise you to find out that this isn't the first time that these two giants of gaming got together to mutual benefit. 

In fact, Sega and Rovio previously joined together for a collaboration in Angry Birds Epic, specifically a set of levels themed after Sega’s Sonic Dash title. Completing a crossover give-and-take that allowed both franchises to get equal visibility on each other's platforms.

This limited-time event took place way back in 2015, but the pair even have history further back than that.

Released in 2013 Sega's own Sonic Dash auto-runner celebrated 100 million downloads with a three week-long in-game event that saw the birds from Angry Bird Epic invade Sonic dash, one Angry Bird becoming unlockable each week, giving three in total.

Little did we know at the time that the developer collab would eventually lead to today's big acquisition news.

As we noted in our previous coverage of the event at the time, head of external products at Rovio Wilhelm Taht, "Having two such iconic game characters and games work seamlessly together will delight millions of fans worldwide in both Sonic Dash and Angry Birds Epic."

Established ties

Why does this matter, aside from the curiosity factor? Well it means that Sega and Rovio are already familiar with how one another works, and although a lot has changed since 2015 it means that there’s some measure of base familiarity. A lot more than fellow prospective buyer Playtika likely had with the Angry Birds developer.

Therefore, Sega and Rovio will have a lot of the groundwork already laid, if and when the deal for the acquisition goes through. It may not be in the form of firm handshakes and developers greeting one another on a first-name basis, but it does mean that at a leadership level there’ll be some understanding of what their mutual aims are when it comes to mobile.

We may also see a resurrection of these collaborative events between Rovio and Sega in the near future, as it offers an easy way to refamiliarise audiences of the former with Sega’s spiky blue pinball. And with their experience of playing around with the world’s most famous hedgehog, might we see Rovio tackle a standalone Sonic title for mobile in future? Only time will tell.