It's good to take a break from all the world's miseries and ask oneself the big questions, such as: what would Sonic the Hedgehog smell like? As a large spiny mammal that spends most of his life running at full-pelt and eating chilli dogs I am going to suggest the answer is 'not good'. Not so, says Sega, which has just launched its own range of colognes based on three franchises.
The "gorgeous, refreshing" yet also strangely "invigorating" Sonic the Hedgehog 'Blue Blur' cologne has apparently been "given the seal of approval from the famous speedy hedgehog himself." Which is like... yeah, screw it, if you're gonna make a cologne based on a fictional hedgehog's invented smell, then fuck reality: Sonic personally approved it!
The smell: "Fresh citrus, a zing of grapefruit zest and exotic lemon and lime, topped with the scene of the ocean breeze and chilled melon fade. Take pleasure in the rich base tones of leather, suede, and cedar." I mean there's a lot going on there, but citrus, suede and leather is giving me big Grease vibes. I imagine that's what the T-Birds smell like. Oh god now I'm doing it.
Moving swiftly on, the Yakuza cologne was "Created for the night" and will thus "have you smelling like the Tojo clan's finest crime boss!" What a tagline! Happy Christmas darling, I've always thought of you as a potential mobster. This fragrance doesn't smell, it "flaunts" a scent of "antique oak, cedarwood, beeswax infused with smoky bourbon, leathery rose and scorching pimento." Your guess as to the aroma of 'leathery rose' is as good as mine.
Finally, Shenmue. When I put this image into the PC Gamer slack the first response was "is that a massive steaming turd behind it?"
Of course not: this cologne is "rebellious and addictive" and will have "Ryo Hazuki nodding in appreciation." This one sounds quite exciting actually: clashing cardamom and bergamot, smouldering golden tobacco, deep orris and a strong patchouli base."
This is not Sega's first rodeo into the world of smellies, not by a longshot. It's flogged plenty of Yakuza cologne in Japan, and those of a certain age may remember somewhat less salubrious products. PC Gamer's own Graeme Meredith was prompted to recall this memento of his youth:
"I owned this when I was 9," writes Graeme. "Bought it at an airport in Greece. I never really used it, being a 9 year-old. Just sat around for like a decade and went weird."
A cautionary tale. Nevertheless, should you or a loved one wish to smell like a crime boss, here's the Sega store. Who knows, if this little lot take off we may get the Vanquish cologne: punchy, sweet, and gone all-too-soon.