Last year (February 14, 2020 to be exact), a lengthy oral history interview was conducted in Japanese with former Sega employee Masaharu Yoshii. Yoshii worked at Sega from 1970 to 2000. For the latter part of that time, he was a senior business manager in the consumer software department. When the Genesis came out in 1989, Yoshii transferred to Sega of America, where he worked for five years. Most of the interview focuses on the business aspects of developing software (licensing, working with third parties, etc.). However, you might recognize Yoshii’s name from the credits of Sonic 2, where he is listed as “Director.” In the interview, he describes his connection to Sonic 2. I’ve translated some limited excerpts of what he says. The full interview is far too long for me to translate (~75 page transcript!), but I’ve tried to get the more interesting things related to Sonic 2. TLDR: Yoshii temporarily took over STI when Mark Cerny quit halfway through the development of Sonic 2. His job was to ensure solid progress was being made on the game. Unlike Japan, most of the developers did not/could not work late hours, even though time was tight. Yuji Naka announced just before the final deadline that the game didn’t fit the ROM size they had been allocated. Sega president Hayao Nakayama OK’d a last-minute increase in the ROM size rather than risk the game being delayed, despite the higher cost. Yoshii was most impressed by the 50 staff at SOA hired solely to do bug checking. In Japan, this tedious work would have been done by the developers themselves. The interview excerpts: His memory seems to be slightly off about the ROM size, but these events did happen 30 years ago. If I stumble upon any other interesting bits, I'll try to post them here.