Sega says that they will be delisting Sonic the Hedgehog, Sonic the Hedgehog 2, Sonic the Hedgehog 3 & Knuckles, and Sonic CD from digital stores on May 20th, 2022 coinciding with the release of the Sonic Origins game collection.
The standalone titles will no longer be available for Xbox, Playstation, PC, and mobile devices. They have said however that Sonic The Hedgehog 1 & 2 will still be available through Sega Ages on the Nintendo Switch and the Nintendo Switch Online Sega Genesis Collection.
Sega will be releasing the Sonic Origins collection on the 23rd of June, just a month after the delisting of these games. This is an updated re-release of the games with new content.
This is not the first time that companies have delisted older versions of games when newer versions are released.
Nintendo took Pikmin 3 and Donkey Kong Country Tropical Freeze off the Wii U eShop when the games were ported to the Switch. Rockstar Games similarly pulled the original versions of the PS2 Grand Theft Auto games following the Grand Theft Auto: The Trilogy – Definitive Edition. In all of these cases, the games were eventually returned to digital stores.
As you can imagine, the practice is unpopular among fans as the companies are essentially trying to pigeonhole people into buying the new releases as opposed to the cheaper older versions.
Sonic Origins will come to PS4, PS5, Switch, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X|S on June 23rd 2022.