UK Charts: Sonic Mega Collection ends NFSU2's run
Famous blue hedgehog clocks up yet another chart success for SEGA.
Sega has proved the strength of its Sonic brand in the UK once again, with retro compilation Sonic Mega Collection Plus debuting at number one and ending Need for Speed Underground 2's record-breaking run in the top spot.
The PS2 and Xbox compilation, which includes all of the Sonic-themed Mega Drive titles (as found in the GameCube version of the Sonic Mega Collection back in 2003) along with a number of newly converted games, is actually one of two Sonic titles in the UK top ten this week.
Sonic Heroes also holds on to a place in the top ten, staying firm at number eight this week, and Sega notches up a third top ten entry with Sports Interactive developed title Football Manager 2005 at number nine.
Need for Speed Underground 2, which broke UK chart records by taking ten consecutive weeks at number one, slips down a place to number two this week, joining two other EA titles in the top ten - FIFA 2005, which holds steady at number six, and UEFA Champions League 2004-2005, a new entry at number ten.
The first week of the year to have any significant new releases sees a fair bit of movement in the top 40, although only Sonic Mega Collection Plus and UEFA Champions League actually trouble the top ten listing.
Capcom's Shadow of Rome and Microsoft's Mech Assault 2: Lone Wolf debut at numbers 11 and 12 respectively - although the latter also takes the top of the Xbox chart, coming in ahead of Sonic in sales on that platform.
THQ's The SpongeBob SquarePants Movie enters the ranking at number 18, while NCSoft's massively multiplayer title City of Heroes is a new entry at number 32 in the chart.
The top ranked GameCube title for the week is Donkey Kong: Jungle Beat, a new release which doesn't make it into the overall Top 40 ranking, but can be found at number 34 in the full-price listing.
Missing in action from the various All-Formats lists, however, are a number of critically acclaimed titles - most notably Koei's Phantom Brave (PS2), and Tecmo's Microsoft-published Project Zero II: Crimson Butterfly (Xbox), neither of which are anywhere to be found.
This week's major releases list sees arguably the biggest MMORPG title of all time debuting in Europe, with World of Warcraft due to hit stores on Friday, where it will be joined by Lucasarts' Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic II - with both titles likely to perform very strongly, although sales may be impacted by the fact that they launched in the USA some time ago.
Also out this week are THQ's latest kids title, The Adventures of Jimmy Neutron Boy Genius: Attack of the Twonkies, Atari's Forgotten Realms: Demon Stone, Capcom's Megaman X8 and Capcom Fighting Jam titles, and a Sega / Sammy duo of Astro Boy and Blood Will Tell.