Yu Suzuki Interview (IGN Japan): Reflections on S3, Plans for S4

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But if you watch this video from the day Shenmue III was announced, literally the first thing he talks about regarding the game itself is the "new skill system." He talks about the "technique scrolls" and how they "will connect to the different aspects of the game," including "the mini-games, betting games, and shops." It's really the only thing he talked about in any detail. Taking this into account, it should be obvious in hindsight that the game's economy system was something that he was chomping at the bit to implement from the very start of the project.

Honestly when I first watched that video I looked like this:


Except replace Nintendo 64 with Shenmue 3. And some four letter words. So I don't remember the details of it with much clarity.

But yes, in hindsight that does seem to line up with what wound up in the game. In 2015 though, I can't say I made the connection that I would be buying sets of capsule toys to trade for technique scrolls and if he had said that outright I think it would have raised some eyebrows.

I don't pretend to know the inner workings of Yu Suzuki 🤭 If those criticisms stuck with him then they stuck with him. Sorry he didn't mention the criticisms you thought he should mention, I guess!
No need to apologize. I'm not saying I know his inner workings either, just that sometimes things can get lost in translation. I can't say I remember anyone complaining about side content in S1 except perhaps the lack of side quests, so it's weird that he would take criticism that I (who followed the game quite closely at the time and was/am very critical of) didn't even really hear about. Doubly weird that he thinks lots of games suddenly have optional content that no one complains about.

Which had nothing to do with the Q&A.
I thought it was referring to the beginning of the game. A thousand apologies if that's not the case.

The idea that they could've come close to completing S3 without Yu Suzuki really knowing about it, I just don't buy it :coffee:
I would add that generally companies aren't in the business of finishing or nearly finishing a sequel and then not releasing it.
 
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Starfox 2?

"Generally". I don't think neither there is much counter examples about cancelled games being both close to the 100% and kept secret from public.

In that situation, companies tend to transfer the assets into another project, rename the game or rush the production.

If the rumor keeps persistent, it's because of the number of different hints supporting the theory on the one hand, and the very affirmative tone of the rumor spreaders on the another hand.
Shenmue Master wrote a good sum-up of the facts happened in 2003 and 2004.
 
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Starfox 2?
It definitely happens but has become a rarer occurance as budgets go up and up. Especially games that remain unannounced when they're almost complete.

Sequels get cancelled all the time in pre-production and early on in development, though, and that's totally what I expect happened with S3.

The Shenmue Master timeline linked by @Yokosuka only supports that, in my opinion.

Also, the article says the game was put on ice pending a "multi-game deal", which makes no sense to me either. That would make total sense before they started, or early on in development, but when they've almost finished the game? SEGA could've just put the game out to recoup some costs. It just doesn't add up, in my opinion.
 
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Starfox 2?
I was wondering which cancelled sequel people were going to use as an example.

But teeeeeeeeeeeeeeechnically Starfox 2 was officially released on September 29, 2017. To be even more pedantic, Starfox 2 was cancelled mid-1995 and Starfox 64 was released early-1997 so it's not like Nintendo completely scrapped the idea of a Starfox sequel, they just changed consoles.

It definitely happens but has become a rarer occurance as budgets go up and up. Especially games that remain unannounced when they're almost complete.
Not only this but the technology gap isn't as immense anymore and assets transfer over much easier. Back in the day, a 1 year difference in release date meant the difference between a 2D and a 3D game, or very primitive 3D vs 3D that still looks good today. Not to put too fine a point on it but Shenmue itself went from having the most mind-meltingly amazing graphics imaginable in 2000, to being considered generally outclassed by the time it was ported to Xbox in just two years. And even in that environment, cancelling an almost-finished game was virtually unheard of.
 

24Nathan

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But didn't Adam Doree said that development of Shenmue 3 was essentially finished and would be released when either Sony, Microsoft, or Nintendo signed an exclusivity deal for the entire series?
Yes.

orient said:
I'm not saying they didn't have access or were lying for clicks. I'm saying the main thrust of their report, that: "[Shenmue 3] has essentially been close to finished and 'ready' for some time" was almost certainly inaccurate. Either their sources were second-hand and they were receiving weak info, or something was lost in translation, or someone along the chain got too excited about the prospect of S3 and started exaggerating the truth, or someone thought an article like this would boost the chances of S3 being released...there are many, many possibilities. The idea that they could've come close to completing S3 without Yu Suzuki really knowing about it, I just don't buy it :coffee:

Here is Adam Doree's response and subsequent forum discussion: https://www.shenmuedojo.net/forum/viewtopic.php?f=5&t=34660

While that pretty much sums it up, I will add some fuel to the fire:

SEGA Europe Announces Shenmue III.png

The legendary Simon Jeffery: https://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/jeffery-yu-suzuki-still-with-sega

And while I can't find the date, I had a conversation with a SEGA community manager on the old SEGA Forums. This was actually an employee, and his name was SegaDawg. He has since passed away, but here are some comments from him:

SegaDawg said:
To be clear here: I've heard precisely nothing about any iteration of Shenmue III (or any other Shenmue game) in any stage of development.

SegaDawg said:
I think it's really doubtful that they're ever going to get what they want anytime soon (or really, to be frank, ever).

SegaDawg said:
As for Shenmue Online -- I know the fans love to hope, but see my previous note about having heard nothing regarding any sort of Shenmue game on our upcoming release schedule. If there's someone at SEGA working on this game, it's a better-kept secret than the final resting place of Jimmy Hoffa.

While I sadly can't place a date on this discussion, or provide proof that it happened as those forums are now long gone (not that what he said is that farfetched), Shenmue Online had clearly been in development and in the news for a long while from what I remember. I claim no expertise in the business side of the video game world, but I do know that SEGA has an incredibly shoddy history of horrendously bad communication and cooperation, especially when it comes to Japan, America, and Europe. I've shown that it is entirely possible for the west to be mistaken, and I assume Japan has some issues as well.

We know that Shenmue Online was for sure in development in 2006, as it was shown at China Joy that year, and rumors started flying around in 2007 that it too had been shelved. Producer Cai Junsong says here that it was essentially finished, but like the original games, Yu Suzuki wanted perfection and SEGA said no:


So while he was wrapped up for three years perfecting this game...it may have very well been possible that Shin Ishikawa, Hiroshi Kataoka and others were working on Shenmue IIIx.
 
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Adam in 2007 said:
If all the fans get any rich relatives together and channel it though Dojo perhaps we could buy rights, hire Suzuki (he'd likely say yes) and independently make the game under license from Sega at no risk to them. That is the only way it will get made at this stage I think.

Genius.
 
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It bums me out these guys didn’t take interest in helping out:


Larry Ellison’s (billionaire many times over) daughter owns this company. They’ve started publishing games as well.


I’m not sure their games have very big budgets, but they seem like a perfect fit if Yu Suzuki needs to change his scope.
 
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Yes.



Here is Adam Doree's response and subsequent forum discussion: https://www.shenmuedojo.net/forum/viewtopic.php?f=5&t=34660

While that pretty much sums it up, I will add some fuel to the fire:

View attachment 7829

The legendary Simon Jeffery: https://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/jeffery-yu-suzuki-still-with-sega

And while I can't find the date, I had a conversation with a SEGA community manager on the old SEGA Forums. This was actually an employee, and his name was SegaDawg. He has since passed away, but here are some comments from him:







While I sadly can't place a date on this discussion, or provide proof that it happened as those forums are now long gone (not that what he said is that farfetched), Shenmue Online had clearly been in development and in the news for a long while from what I remember. I claim no expertise in the business side of the video game world, but I do know that SEGA has an incredibly shoddy history of horrendously bad communication and cooperation, especially when it comes to Japan, America, and Europe. I've shown that it is entirely possible for the west to be mistaken, and I assume Japan has some issues as well.

We know that Shenmue Online was for sure in development in 2006, as it was shown at China Joy that year, and rumors started flying around in 2007 that it too had been shelved. Producer Cai Junsong says here that it was essentially finished, but like the original games, Yu Suzuki wanted perfection and SEGA said no:


So while he was wrapped up for three years perfecting this game...it may have very well been possible that Shin Ishikawa, Hiroshi Kataoka and others were working on Shenmue IIIx.
Thanks for the info. I don't think there was purposeful misreporting going on. Do I think they began development on Xbox? Most likely -- perhaps in a pre-production phase where they planned out the project -- maybe they even got started on textures or whatever else was in the article. But did they 'almost complete' the game? I don't think so. I don't think SEGA would've spent any more of their money on S3 without Microsoft clearly being on-board.
 

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We sort of did this... we got all our money together and used it to fund Shenmue 3.

I was happy to give $175... but sometimes I think I would rather have all $6.6 Million for myself than the game.

That's... why Yokosuka wrote that (facepalm).
 
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