As the song from Sonic Adventure 2 goes, “Got places to go, gotta follow my rainbow.” Roger Craig Smith announced on Twitter on Thursday morning that he is retiring as the voice of Sonic the Hedgehog after voicing the Blue Blue for 10 years.
Smith hinted that he was no longer voicing Sonic by posting a picture of a blue heart emoji broken in half below his statement, where he made light of his departure from the Sonic franchise by thanking the nearly 100,000 followers on Twitter who have supported him over the past decade, saying, “Welp, 10 years was an amazing run. Onward to new zones! Much love to the fans who’ve been so kind. It’s been an honor.”
In 2010, Smith began his decade-long tenure as the voice of the Blue Blur actor starting with Sonic Free Riders, running Sonic’s mouth all the way through Team Sonic Racing. He recently lent his voice to Sonic once more when he spin dashed his way to Puyo Puyo Tetris 2.
Perhaps his greatest voice-over work for the Blue Blur was in the Sonic Boom TV series, a spin-off from the Wii U game Sonic Boom: Rise of Lyric, where he shined through the now blue-armed hedgehog with as much humor as he did in the games, even breaking the fourth wall in one episode by slipping his actual voice in response to Knuckles asking, “Who’s Roger?”
Outside of Sonic, Smith has also voiced Ezio in the Assassin’s Creed series, Deidara in Naruto, Dr. N. Brio in Crash Bandicoot 4: It’s About Time, Mirage in Apex Legends, and Batman in Batman: Arkham Origins.
As of this writing, it is unknown who Sega will hire as the voice of Sonic. It is also unknown whether other voice actors currently in the Sonic VO roster will depart from their voice roles as well, considering the pattern of who steps in to voice Sonic’s friends and when.
While Smith retiring his Sonic voice is not the best thing to happen around the Blue Blur’s 30th anniversary, there is a silver lining to it: He broke the world record for voicing Sonic longer than his predecessors. Jaleel White voiced Sonic in the ’90s Sonic cartoons from 1993 to 1999; Ryan Drummond lent his voice to Sonic during the Adventure era from 1998 through 2004; and Griffith voiced him from 2003 to 2009 starting with the English dub of the Sonic X anime.
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