Will Suzuki change his mind and just finish the story in the anime?

Joined
Oct 31, 2019
I think the fact that Suzuki is so involved and onboard this project may mean he is looking for a way to just conclude the story like this. He is fully aware of how unimpressed he is with Shenmue 3 and what it means for the future of the series so he may already be planning to go all out and just end it especially if Shenmue: The Animation proves to be very successful, then he will no doubt just be peer pressured to cut Shenmue 4 and 5 off from being a video game and present the rest of the story as an anime.
 

BruceWayne911

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I think the fact that Suzuki is so involved and onboard this project may mean he is looking for a way to just conclude the story like this. He is fully aware of how unimpressed he is with Shenmue 3 and what it means for the future of the series so he may already be planning to go all out and just end it especially if Shenmue: The Animation proves to be very successful, then he will no doubt just be peer pressured to cut Shenmue 4 and 5 off from being a video game and present the rest of the story as an anime.

Yu will try everything he can to finish the series in video game format. If the anime does prove to be successful and gaming is no longer a option then anime would be a viable choice.
 
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Joined
Jul 28, 2018
We dont even have one single episode of the anime yet.
Who says that Adult Swim & Crunchyroll or Yu Suzuki are even interested in making more seasons than one?
Somebody has to pay for this stuff too. The Sega animation team isnt working for free
just because fans liked the season.
So far none of the involved people who are working on the anime said anything
about the anime replacing the games. The Shenmue 3 companies (Shibuya, Deep Silver)
have nothing to do with the anime and we have no idea what they are doing behind closed doors.

If there will be no Shenmue 4 and if they are going to finish the whole story with the anime,
all of the involved companies and people will make it very very very very very very very very very clear
that thats the plan. We are far away from that point.
 

BruceWayne911

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We dont even have one single episode of the anime yet.
Who says that Adult Swim & Crunchyroll or Yu Suzuki are even interested in making more seasons than one?
Somebody has to pay for this stuff too. The Sega animation team isnt working for free
just because fans liked the season.
So far none of the involved people who are working on the anime said anything
about the anime replacing the games. The Shenmue 3 companies (Shibuya, Deep Silver)
have nothing to do with the anime and we have no idea what they are doing behind closed doors.

If there will be no Shenmue 4 and if they are going to finish the whole story with the anime,
all of the involved companies and people will make it very very very very very very very very very clear
that thats the plan. We are far away from that point.

They will want to continue a anime if it turns out to be very popular. Nobody wants to turn down a profit.
 
Joined
Jul 28, 2018
They will want to continue a anime if it turns out to be very popular. Nobody wants to turn down a profit.

Normally i would say yes, true
but we know that the Adult Swim guy who started this whole thing is a Shenmue fan
and Sega probably asked Suzuki if hes okay with it and vice versa.
Which means if only one of these parties is not interested in a season 2, then there probably wont be a season 2.
If Suzuki says no, because he doesnt want to replace the games with the anime,
chances are high that Adult Swim and Sega will say no too.
Like, do we believe that Sega would ignore Suzuki and finish the story without him? I dont think so.
If the Adult Swim guy says no for whatever reason, then whos gonna pay the animation studio?
If Sega says no, then what is Adult Swim and Suzuki gonna do without the animation studio?
This is not Dragon Ball or One Piece where it will go on and on either way.
So i wouldnt look at this as a standard big anime project.
 

BruceWayne911

Upper Knuckle (⬅️ ⬅️ 🤜)
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Normally i would say yes, true
but we know that the Adult Swim guy who started this whole thing is a Shenmue fan
and Sega probably asked Suzuki if hes okay with it and vice versa.
Which means if only one of these parties is not interested in a season 2, then there probably wont be a season 2.
If Suzuki says no, because he doesnt want to replace the games with the anime,
chances are high that Adult Swim and Sega will say no too.
Like, do we believe that Sega would ignore Suzuki and finish the story without him? I dont think so.
If the Adult Swim guy says no for whatever reason, then whos gonna pay the animation studio?
If Sega says no, then what is Adult Swim and Suzuki gonna do without the animation studio?
This is not Dragon Ball or One Piece where it will go on and on either way.
So i wouldnt look at this as a standard big anime project.

I see your point. If this anime is popular its a win-win for everyone. The adult swim guy is a admitted Shenmue fan so he'll want to apply his craft to the Shenmue brand. Yu wants to finish Shenmue in video game format but he's also said he wants to make Shenmue more approachable to a wider audience. This anime could do that giving Shenmue more exposure and increasing sales, making Yu's vision more possible. IMO we dont have to worry about Sega, they just want to make easy money off a old IP. Even if Yu doesn't want to continue with Shenmue in anime form they would most likely try to convince him otherwise if the anime is profitable.

Also Yu might be interested in doing a Shenmue 0 or Shenmue Origins story. This might be more realistic if presented in a anime format. I personally hope we get animes covering all the games especially Shenmue 3. A Shenmue 3 anime could tell the full story and reveal all the characters that we didn't see in the game. I do agree with your point, let's not get ahead of ourselves just enjoy the finished product and see where it goes from there.

If I were a betting man I'd say we'll probably here a Shenmue 4 announcement at the end of the last episode. At least I hope so.🤞
 
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I don’t think that there will come a point where Yu changes his mind, per se, but I do think that if he is unable to secure the kind of funding he feels that he needs to continue the series in game form, the existence of the anime might factor into his decision when it comes to moving the story forwards.

I get the impression that Yu wasn’t too happy about having to compromise his vision for Shenmue 3 nor do I think he enjoyed being beholden to the desires and demands of backers, so if he were to once again find himself in a position where kickstarting a low budget S4 is the only way to move the series forwards - he might be content to allow the anime to complete the story instead (especially if it is good).

Again though, if the anime ends up being successful enough to secure a second season, one would hope that Yu will be able to leverage this success while trying to secure funding.

Right now I think S4 is a tough sell to investors, but being able to point to a successful anime as well as the preexisting fan base that the games already have should make it considerably easier - and that’s assuming that there’s not already an agreement with Sega that will lead to them funding Shenmue 4 if the anime is hugely profitable.
 

Rakim

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Jul 27, 2018
Why not continue on with both the game series and anime series, though? Couldn't both projects work in tandem create a larger fanbase for each?
That's why I said mainly as an anime. A successful anime would give new momentum to the games, but I think the anime would ultimately become the bigger tent pole in that scenario.
 
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I still believe the anime is maybe a bit of a "Plan B"

Remember, Cedric did always say the chances of IV was 50/50 and if not then there would be other ways explored. (or something akin to that)

I do kind of believe this is a Plan B of sorts. Some people like to point to the fact that it was green lit around the time of Shenmue III releasing, but could that be because they had sales projections and the outlook was gloomy? Do we even know how many copies Shenmue III sold in the wild? Part of me does believe this is "Plan B."

Even though I don't want to. I really want to hold onto the hope that this series will finish the way it started...in game form. But I don't know. With the way the economy is at the moment and the reception of Shenmue III, I'm starting to believe this might be the safer financial Plan B in the long run to tell the story and get it done.

But we will see...Here's hoping IV will happen. Here's hoping someone will front the money.
 
Joined
Jul 11, 2019
With Covid having such a knock on game development it could be a very, very long time before IV is released.

I'm kinda looking at it this way:
  • The Animation keeps the series in the hearts and minds of players
  • Starting from the beginning, it invites new fans into the fold including non-gamers
  • During production of the series, this gives Yu a timeframe to seek investors for Shenmue IV (assuming he doesn't have those already) as well as another reason for them to invest (cross media promotion)
This then goes one of the following ways:
  • If no investors are found, and the anime is a success, then the series can continue as an animation. 'New' fans get to experience the story and help create a hit show. 'Old' fans have something new to enjoy, and will finally get closure to a story started two decades ago.
  • If investors are found, and the anime is a success, this gives Yu the chance to develop Shenmue IV while the anime continues with the second series, covering the ending of Shenmue II and the entirety of Shenmue III. That timeframe could lead to development of both the Shenmue IV game and the Shenmue IV anime being produced in tandem, so non-gamers can watch, and players can play - perhaps, the game could have animated cutscenes then too - to drastically reduce the production cost of the game, and to ensure 'a single vision' of the game is carried forward.
  • Worst case scenario, If no investors are found, and the show is a failure, then Yu can move on, knowing he did the best he could to finish the saga. With the buzz the series announcement made and the game still holding the kickstarter record, I very much doubt it.
I think there's still a lot of unknowns at this point. For all we know the anime could be years off. How much involvement do Sega have? Do Deep Silver have first refusal on sequels/publishing rights? Is the anime only of Shenmue I & II as that's what Sega own?
 

BruceWayne911

Upper Knuckle (⬅️ ⬅️ 🤜)
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Currently playing
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With Covid having such a knock on game development it could be a very, very long time before IV is released.

I'm kinda looking at it this way:
  • The Animation keeps the series in the hearts and minds of players
  • Starting from the beginning, it invites new fans into the fold including non-gamers
  • During production of the series, this gives Yu a timeframe to seek investors for Shenmue IV (assuming he doesn't have those already) as well as another reason for them to invest (cross media promotion)
This then goes one of the following ways:
  • If no investors are found, and the anime is a success, then the series can continue as an animation. 'New' fans get to experience the story and help create a hit show. 'Old' fans have something new to enjoy, and will finally get closure to a story started two decades ago.
  • If investors are found, and the anime is a success, this gives Yu the chance to develop Shenmue IV while the anime continues with the second series, covering the ending of Shenmue II and the entirety of Shenmue III. That timeframe could lead to development of both the Shenmue IV game and the Shenmue IV anime being produced in tandem, so non-gamers can watch, and players can play - perhaps, the game could have animated cutscenes then too - to drastically reduce the production cost of the game, and to ensure 'a single vision' of the game is carried forward.
  • Worst case scenario, If no investors are found, and the show is a failure, then Yu can move on, knowing he did the best he could to finish the saga. With the buzz the series announcement made and the game still holding the kickstarter record, I very much doubt it.
I think there's still a lot of unknowns at this point. For all we know the anime could be years off. How much involvement do Sega have? Do Deep Silver have first refusal on sequels/publishing rights? Is the anime only of Shenmue I & II as that's what Sega own?

IMO the announcement of the anime kinda confirms that Shenmue 4 will be happening. Why would they spend money developing a anime for a niche game if their was no market? Shenmue 4 is coming.

20200908_092147.jpg
 
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I doubt any final decisions about Shenmue 4 are being made prior to Shenmue 3 releasing on all platforms and the anime releasing worldwide. I will say it's very unlikely someone decided to invest in an anime for a product they think is unprofitable, after many years of talk that the series is an unprofitable failure. There is a glimmer of something there; we just don't have the information the investors have, nor should we.
 
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I doubt any final decisions about Shenmue 4 are being made prior to Shenmue 3 releasing on all platforms and the anime releasing worldwide. I will say it's very unlikely someone decided to invest in an anime for a product they think is unprofitable, after many years of talk that the series is an unprofitable failure. There is a glimmer of something there; we just don't have the information the investors have, nor should we.
The kind of viewing figures needed for an anime to be successful are significantly lower than the kind of sales needed for a game with a $20m budget to be considered successful. A lot of the money generated by anime shows also comes through merchandising and physical media sales - and so with a pre-existing fan base of 50,000+, it’s a safe bet that they’ll see a decent return on their investment alone while also having healthy viewing figures to boot.

There’s still an element of risk on their part, but I think it’s a much easier risk to take (both in terms of the size of the investment and the chance of seeing a return) than somebody investing in another Shenmue game.
 
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