Is the tree at Ternary Spring an actual Shenmue Tree?

Switch

Shenmue analysis at www.phantomriverstone.com
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There has been a lot of discussion in the past on these forums about the nature of the tree that is in bloom at Ternary Spring. It resembles a Shenmue tree in several ways, but there is contradictory evidence for and against this in the game itself (and depending on whether you play in English or Japanese!).

This article looks at some of the evidence / indications about its nature... which do you think?

https://www.phantomriverstone.com/2021/09/shenmue-tree-cherry-tree-shenmue-3.html

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Hiki

その者、東の遠つ国より 海を渡りて現れり
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Really hard to say if it is a Shenmue tree or a Cherry tree, some informations lead me to believe is a younger Shenmue tree, but other informations lead me to believe is a Cherry tree.

I think the japanese version will always be more correct because it is the original version, the english version is a translated version.

Switch, as always thanks for the beautiful content, i love reading your Shenmue blog.
 
Joined
Aug 19, 2018
It’s been bugging me ever since my initial play through. While we probably won’t have a definitive answer without clarification from Suzuki, I do concur with your conclusion.

Great work as usual @Switch
 
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There are several Shenmue trees like the one in baby Shenhua's flashback. I believe there is something special about the one outside Shenhua's house, perhaps her parents channeled the power seeping within the spirit of the tree and sealed the phoenix and dragon inside the mirrors. I suspect Shenhua will reject the treasure and needs to channel the power of the Shenmue tree, I guess she will break the seal of the mirrors, freeing the entities within, destroying the keys in their current form, and ending the war of the mirrors.
 

Hiki

その者、東の遠つ国より 海を渡りて現れり
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Personally, I choose to believe it's just a regular cherry blossom tree and that the Shenmue tree is unique.

Maybe is just a regular cherry blossom tree like you said, maybe there is just one Shenmue tree in Bailu Village but i think there is more than one Shenmue tree in the Shenmue world, at least one more.

In Shenhua's flashback we can see another Shenmue tree, i don't think that tree is in Bailu Village, i don't think this place is in Bailu Village.




I think is in Luoyang, Shenhua even talked about this place in Shenmue III, probably in Shenmue IV Ryo and Shenhua will go to Luoyang and there we will see more revelations about the Shenmue tree, Shenhua's powers and maybe even about Shenhua's parents, will be really nice if we get to know more about them, maybe i'm wrong, i don't know, is just a theory.

In this image is probably Shenhua in Luoyang.


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While many of us stress that one/single tree, both @Demon's Triangle and @Hiki are right to stress that there seem to be multiple trees.
I suspect many of us wonder how much some of S3's story was compromised, but this aspect seems to be consistent, given the empirical evidence from the datamined aspects. It's less the number of trees (quantity), but more what they represent (quality). Maybe that one outside the house was just to be a primary example (Ryo felt this one, albeit one of many).
 
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Maybe is just a regular cherry blossom tree like you said, maybe there is just one Shenmue tree in Bailu Village but i think there is more than one Shenmue tree in the Shenmue world, at least one more.

In Shenhua's flashback we can see another Shenmue tree, i don't think that tree is in Bailu Village, i don't think this place is in Bailu Village.




I think is in Luoyang, Shenhua even talked about this place in Shenmue III, probably in Shenmue IV Ryo and Shenhua will go to Luoyang and there we will see more revelations about the Shenmue tree, Shenhua's powers and maybe even about Shenhua's parents, will be really nice if we get to know more about them, maybe i'm wrong, i don't know, is just a theory.

In this image is probably Shenhua in Luoyang.


View attachment 12837
I believe Shenhua is a reincarnation/descended from a Tang-dynasty empress, a child, or grandchild.They exiled themselves in Bailu Village to escape a rebellion, or because a scornful empress had forsaken them.

My hunch is also Sunming Zhao was entrusted the Mirrors because he descended from the Qing Dynasty, one of the prince regents, or perhaps had some connection to the imperial envoy Shenmue 3 kept emphasing.
 

Hiki

その者、東の遠つ国より 海を渡りて現れり
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I believe Shenhua is a reincarnation/descended from a Tang-dynasty empress, a child, or grandchild.They exiled themselves in Bailu Village to escape a rebellion, or because a scornful empress had forsaken them.

My hunch is also Sunming Zhao was entrusted the Mirrors because he descended from the Qing Dynasty, one of the prince regents, or perhaps had some connection to the imperial envoy Shenmue 3 kept emphasing.
I think this is possible, interesting theory, i really think that in Shenmue IV the story will advance more about this mysteries of the story. About the Shenmue tree, Shenhua's powers, Shenhua's parents and much more, i really hope we can see this things in Luoyang, Luoyang looks an interesting and important location for the story.

And i like your other theory as well, the theory that Yuanda Zhu is the true villan of the series.

It is possible Yuanda Zhu = Tentei
 
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I think this is possible, interesting theory, i really think that in Shenmue IV the story will advance more about this mysteries of the story. About the Shenmue tree, Shenhua's powers, Shenhua's parents and much more, i really hope we can see this things in Luoyang, Luoyang looks an interesting and important location for the story.

And i like your other theory as well, the theory that Yuanda Zhu is the true villan of the series.

It is possible Yuanda Zhu = Tentei
I'm not sure IV will be made so I enjoy imagining what could be and how all the threads may have connected.
 
Joined
Jul 28, 2018
Nice article! I think the mystery surrounding the Shenmue tree is still purposely vague at this point in the story.

My gut says the 'Shenmue tree' reference in the notebook was probably an oversight (because, in classic Shenmue fashion, there are numerous issues with the localisation) but whether there are multiple trees or not is still inconclusive regardless.
 

Hiki

その者、東の遠つ国より 海を渡りて現れり
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What if Shenhua's parents had to escape Luoyang for some reason? then they met Yunshen Yuan and in a extreme situation, maybe a life and death situation they asked Yuan to take care of Shenhua, then maybe they gave a Shenmue seed to Yuan and Yuan planted in Bailu Village, i think it will be intense and emotional if we see a scene like this.

I think in the Shenmue story we have at least 2 Shenmue trees, one in Bailu Village and one in Luoyang where we will probably see more revelations about the Shenmue tree, Shenhua's powers and much more, maybe this will happen, i don't know, is just a theory.
 
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Jul 21, 2020
What if Shenhua's parents had to escape Luoyang for some reason? then they met Yunshen Yuan and in a extreme situation, maybe a life and death situation they asked Yuan to take care of Shenhua, then maybe they gave a Shenmue seed to Yuan and Yuan planted in Bailu Village, i think it will be intense and emotional if we see a scene like this.

I think in the Shenmue story we have at least 2 Shenmue trees, one in Bailu Village and one in Luoyang where we will probably see more revelations about the Shenmue tree, Shenhua's powers and much more, maybe this will happen, i don't know, is just a theory.
I think in II Shenhua said something like the Shenmue tree is older than her grandad was.
 

Hiki

その者、東の遠つ国より 海を渡りて現れり
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I think in II Shenhua said something like the Shenmue tree is older than her grandad was.

I finished Shenmue II just one time, it was in 2017 so i don't remember all the details, i think it's time for me to play again, i have plans to play all Shenmue games again this year, thanks for the infomation.
 
Joined
Jul 31, 2018
I find this inconsistency maddening. With hardly any plot in the game at all, to have such a discrepancy of there casually being more than one Shenmue tree in Bailu or a translation error that suggested such erroneously is nuts. And yes I realize that the flashback in S2 indicated they were common at some time or place, but the Shenmue tree we knew from Shenmue 2 was very clearly meant to be unique. And if there were multiple Shenmue trees in present day Bailu, I'd expect some further exposition on the what the trees mean and we didn't get that.
 
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Can still be unique while not being exclusive--especially to Shenhua... it is still uncommon and only in China.
 
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