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The only figures I can find online say that Shenmue 2 sold less than 30,000 units on the Xbox. That is the dictionary definition of a game selling fuck all.

Dictionaries tend to research things a bit better, to be fair. Ignoring the PAL/Asian Dreamcast Shenmue 2 release is a bit daft.

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LOL!!!!!!!

I should have put ' first big stumble' in terms of the Dreamcast there.

The Saturn, 32X and Mega-CD failures are stories for another thread.

The western marketing teams had a year in which to hype this to the West and entice non-gamers to give it a try.

Shenmue was easily sold to those DC owners who knew about it beforehand via magazine previews and the Internet.

Those who weren't aware of the game's existence upon release probably aren't even aware of it now.

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Dictionaries tend to research things a bit better, to be fair. Ignoring the PAL/Asian Dreamcast Shenmue 2 release is a bit daft.

I'm not ignoring it, I just couldn't find any figures for the sales of DC Shenmue 2 in my brief search. It certainly didn't sell more than Shenmue, and that the fact that the Xbox port sold approximately bugger all kind of negates the argument that there's this massive fanbase waiting for the release of Shenmue 3.

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Don't sequels traditionally sell fewer than their forebears?

Yeah - and traditionally, they don't come about several years after their predecessor and off the back of a billion forum topics just like this.

Way to apply conventional thinking to a completely unconventional scenario. :(

Shenmue 3 would only be mega-hyped for the people who liked number 2 and/or 1 - ie. a million or so of them. No-one else would really care that much, unless the game was massively different enough to appeal to a broader range of people.

WRONG! The existence of Shenmue 3 would make the front page of every gaming mag and website it applied to. Retrospectives, features, editorials, blogs and week-long specials would be the order of the day, and you can bet your ass that enthusiasm would rub off on people who previously hadn't bothered with the series. The media's influence is more important to the informed consumer now than it's ever been, and in terms of where the industry was then compared to where it is now, it's a lot bigger, and catering to a much larger consumer base.

But let's say you're right, so far as the number of people who'd be interested in the game is concerned: that's considerably more than any new IP starts with at the point of conception (obviously). In fact, some franchises have sustained themselves with less interest than what Shenmue currently attracts as a semi-existant entity, so the only question left is this: why haven't Sega released it yet? The cost of the project has been absorbed by Sega, who have long been in the black; the assets for the series - character designs, artwork, storyline and if the source of Shenmue 2 is to be believed, even in-game renderings - are still there.

So why not?

Because I imagine all those assets are only so useful so long as they're meant for a Dreamcast game, or something comparable in terms of cost. A complete makeover for the series would at least put them in the same "will it, won't it" situation that contributed to their ruination in the first place, despite the series being arguably more viable now than it was 9 years ago. So with that in mind, I think that if it ever does come about, it won't make it to retail, rather a service that's comparable to XBLA within the next decade or so - probably next gen. It'll be pitched as the continuation/conclusion to the saga, bearing the same graphics, sound, maybe even rubbishy controls as it's predecessors.

Whatever though - nobody really knows for sure, and the most likely outcome still has Shenmue gathering dust in the head of Yu Suzuki. But so far as guess work goes, I dare say mine's infinitely better informed than some of the shit I've read so far.

Way to go those retards! Big clap for you! :D

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I think Shenmue 3 would be a sizeable hit, actually. It'd be a big enough deal to the critics for plenty of mags and sites to dedicate serious coverage to, which - contrary to popular belief - certainly has some effect on sales. In many ways, it'd make perfect sense on the Wii. You could have all sorts of motion-control daftness, and many of the assets could be reused, just a little buffed-up. Plus Sega seems to have a strong association with the console at the moment. It'd be much cheaper to make than a 360/PS3 version, and it'd be appearing on the current market-leading console, thus making reasonable sales all the more likely.

Not only that, but the voice acting and cutscene direction would probably be much better - with the progress made in the medium between then and now, the story and performances wouldn't be quite so embarrassingly naff. Marketed well, it could look like quite a cool kung-fu actioner, and in the meantime, they could bung the first two on a single disk for the Wii at a budget price to introduce people to the series.

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I think Shenmue 3 would be a sizeable hit, actually. It'd be a big enough deal to the critics for plenty of mags and sites to dedicate serious coverage to, which - contrary to popular belief - certainly has some effect on sales. In many ways, it'd make perfect sense on the Wii. You could have all sorts of motion-control daftness, and many of the assets could be reused, just a little buffed-up.

I agree it's a good fit in that sense at least, but the Wii's got completely the wrong userbase.

Plus Sega seems to have a strong association with the console at the moment. It'd be much cheaper to make than a 360/PS3 version, and it'd be appearing on the current market-leading console, thus making reasonable sales all the more likely.

True, but I wouldn't preclude the idea of it appearing on those consoles' downloadable services. That way, they target the right userbase and by means that afford them the luxury of presenting the games pretty much as-is, with nary a hint of a makeover. It may not happen now, but there's plenty of scope for future generations of console to host the size of these files quite comfortably.

Not only that, but the voice acting and cutscene direction would probably be much better - with the progress made in the medium between then and now, the story and performances wouldn't be quite so embarrassingly naff. Marketed well, it could look like quite a cool kung-fu actioner, and in the meantime, they could bung the first two on a single disk for the Wii at a budget price to introduce people to the series.

If it ever made it as far as shop shelves, I'd wager it'd be a compilation of all three games.

"Look inside! 3rd chapter! THIS Is COOL" etc.

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Yeah - and traditionally, they don't come about several years after their predecessor and off the back of a billion forum topics just like this.

Way to apply conventional thinking to a completely unconventional scenario. :(

WRONG! The existence of Shenmue 3 would make the front page of every gaming mag and website it applied to. Retrospectives, features, editorials, blogs and week-long specials would be the order of the day, and you can bet your ass that enthusiasm would rub off on people who previously hadn't bothered with the series. The media's influence is more important to the informed consumer now than it's ever been, and in terms of where the industry was then compared to where it is now, it's a lot bigger, and catering to a much larger consumer base.

But let's say you're right, so far as the number of people who'd be interested in the game is concerned: that's considerably more than any new IP starts with at the point of conception (obviously). In fact, some franchises have sustained themselves with less interest than what Shenmue currently attracts as a semi-existant entity, so the only question left is this: why haven't Sega released it yet? The cost of the project has been absorbed by Sega, who have long been in the black; the assets for the series - character designs, artwork, storyline and if the source of Shenmue 2 is to be believed, even in-game renderings - are still there.

So why not?

Because I imagine all those assets are only so useful so long as they're meant for a Dreamcast game, or something comparable in terms of cost. A complete makeover for the series would at least put them in the same "will it, won't it" situation that contributed to their ruination in the first place, despite the series being arguably more viable now than it was 9 years ago. So with that in mind, I think that if it ever does come about, it won't make it to retail, rather a service that's comparable to XBLA within the next decade or so - probably next gen. It'll be pitched as the continuation/conclusion to the saga, bearing the same graphics, sound, maybe even rubbishy controls as it's predecessors.

Whatever though - nobody really knows for sure, and the most likely outcome still has Shenmue gathering dust in the head of Yu Suzuki. But so far as guess work goes, I dare say mine's infinitely better informed than some of the shit I've read so far.

Way to go those retards! Big clap for you! :D

There speaks the voice of reason. So true.

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I agree it's a good fit in that sense at least, but the Wii's got completely the wrong userbase.

I think that's a sweeping generalisation that can't be conclusively proven. Particularly given the success of certain third-party titles, certainly in Japan if not the West. Over there, Wii is starting to be considered as much a hardcore-friendly console as t'other two. It's not the casuals that are helping Brawl smash a million sales in 10 days, is it?

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There speaks the voice of reason. So true.

It would be true if Shenmue was a new property. As it is, it would take probably the same amount of effort for them to make a new engine/assets as it would to make a whole new IP, and the new IP wouldn't have any negative reputation from people who didn't like it. You can sell anything with enough hype, but only the first time, and a new hyped IP would pick up better sales than a hyped sequel to a game with a mixed reception.

His guesswork might be better than other peoples, but his logic's properly fucked.

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I think that's a sweeping generalisation that can't be conclusively proven.

And yet, the rest of your post turns out to be exactly that, with absolutely no sense of irony attached. And here I was, being all diplomatic when responding to you the first time round - I shant bother doing that again!

Particularly given the success of certain third-party titles, certainly in Japan if not the West. Over there, Wii is starting to be considered as much a hardcore-friendly console as t'other two.

You mean like No More Heroes? The times they are a changin'! From Wiki guys, have a butchers:

For the Japanese release, a poorly attended launch event for the game was held on December 6, 2007 at Akihabara's Sofmap Amusement featuring both Suda 51 and Wada Yasuhiro signing copies of the games and giving away premiums. After 20 minutes passed without any purchases, a Famitsu reporter had a copy signed while others took photos.[30] No More Heroes sold approximately 10,000 copies on its first day of release in Japan.[31]

But of course, using a single game's succes or failure in a single territory (one that, incidentally, didn't exactly take to Shenmue in the first place) to prove my point would be ludicrous. In fact, I wouldn't dream of doing it, but guys, you gotta fight fire with fire: it's my understanding that doing so won't actually put out the existing fire, only exacerbate the problem, but the heart wants what it wants:

It's not the casuals that are helping Brawl smash a million sales in 10 days, is it?

No Canton, it's not - it's Nintendo fans. I'm willing to bet there's at least that many in Japan, let alone the rest of the world, for whom the prospect of playing Shenmue is appealing as shitting on their Wii while signing into a 360. The fact is that this hardcore element you allude to in your statement aren't the definition of hardcore, only one facet of it: therfore, you're in no position to condemn people for using what you perceive to be sweeping generalisations.

Anyway, keep reaching for that Nintenbow, Canton: I've got a new customer!

It would be true if Shenmue was a new property. As it is, it would take probably the same amount of effort for them to make a new engine/assets as it would to make a whole new IP, and the new IP wouldn't have any negative reputation from people who didn't like it.

Did you actually read the whole post? I said that the release of a new Shenmue would likely be contingent on reusing as many of the old assets still in their posession as they could. I mean, jesus, I even said that a new engine/assets would put them in much the same position they were before they released it - one of jeopardy, albeit nothing compared to the first time round.

Which is why I said it'll be a download effort, as opposed to a retail release.

His guesswork might be better than other peoples,

Yours, chiefly

but his logic's properly fucked.

That or your eyes are. Should've gone to SHAME-SAVERS! :(

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Which is why I said it'll be a download effort, as opposed to a retail release.

This is by far the best suggestion. They could easily release the remaining chapters via download. I bet it would sell a bucket load and if it didnt so what? They could cut their losses and not bother making the remaining chapters.

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And yet, the rest of your post turns out to be exactly that, with absolutely no sense of irony attached. And here I was, being all diplomatic when responding to you the first time round - I shant bother doing that again!

Sorry, I wasn't being aggressive or anything. If my post came out like that, I apologise. I just don't think it's as straightforward as that - of course some Wii games are selling poorly, but then No More Heroes was always going to be dangerously niche. It beat Killer 7's LTD in its first week, so that's not the best example - if you really wanted to prove your point, you should've gone with We Love Golf. :( Of course, I could counter with Dragon Quest Swords, but then you'd no doubt say its sales were purely thanks to the DQ name. Which would be a reasonable observation. But Sega are currently doing pretty well on Wii, with the likes of Ghost Squad selling well without requiring significant financial investment. I'd wager that HOTD2+3 Return will perform similarly, but I guess we won't know until the end of March. I just think it's unwise to completely write off third-party games on Wii so readily. The All-Formats Top 40 had eight or nine third-party Wii games in there last week...

No Canton, it's not - it's Nintendo fans. I'm willing to bet there's at least that many in Japan, let alone the rest of the world, for whom the prospect of playing Shenmue is appealing as shitting on their Wii while signing into a 360. The fact is that this hardcore element you allude to in your statement aren't the definition of hardcore, only one facet of it: therfore, you're in no position to condemn people for using what you perceive to be sweeping generalisations.

There was no condemnation. I merely suggested it was a generalisation to say there wouldn't be an audience for it simply because of the nature of the console, as if it being on the 360 or PS3 would magically create an audience for what's a pretty divisive franchise. I hate to think what your response would have been had I posted something more vitriolic. Not that I would, because I was just offering an opinion.

Anyway, keep reaching for that Nintenbow, Canton: I've got a new customer!

Makes no odds to me which format it's on; I own all three home consoles, my most-played being the 360. But if you want to try and make an argument out of nothing, then be my guest.

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Not only that, but the voice acting and cutscene direction would probably be much better - with the progress made in the medium between then and now, the story and performances wouldn't be quite so embarrassingly naff.

The story isn't embarrassingly naff. It's a rip-off of Hamlet, but it's well handled. The twist in Shenmue 2, that Lan Di believed himself to be revenging his own father when he killed Ryo's, was really smart, in that it recast the moral landscape and called into question the righteousness of Ryo's quest. What we've had so far is a a story of genuine moral sophistication. It also uses minor characters well to shed light on it's main concern (i.e. whether revenge can be righteous and healthy) - Xuiying and Ximing, even Ine-San and Paul (I think that's his name) at the docks in the first one who lost someone to the gangs.

That said, the supernatural stuff worries me.

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I hate to think what your response would have been had I posted something more vitriolic. Not that I would, because I was just offering an opinion.

You know me by now: I'm the passion. Everything's an affront. Anyway, I'm riding out of this topic off the back of this post, like the Pope on a nuke heading towards the sun.

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Did you actually read the whole post?

It was massive, I don't have that kind of time. Skimreading before reaching for cruise control is a much more efficient way of handling these things. Usually.

I said that the release of a new Shenmue would likely be contingent on reusing as many of the old assets still in their posession as they could. I mean, jesus, I even said that a new engine/assets would put them in much the same position they were before they released it - one of jeopardy, albeit nothing compared to the first time round.

Which is why I said it'll be a download effort, as opposed to a retail release.

I missed the download effort bit. I was still thinking of the idea of it being a retail one, in which case it would require a massive new technology and asset outlay to look up to date. Not that it looks bad as such, but people seem to like their pixel shaders these days and it might have trouble competing on its own merits.

A download model would work, but couldn't fit onto something like Live. You'd need a one-off download of about a CD's worth of data containing the engine code and the shared assets for each chapter, then each download containing its specific dialogue and scripting. If we're talking keeping all the assets the same and just porting the engine to the consoles then it would be pretty economical - I wonder if the reason this hasn't been done yet is that Yu Suzuki just wants to draw a line under it.

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It was massive, I don't have that kind of time. Skimreading before reaching for cruise control is a much more efficient way of handling these things. Usually.

I missed the download effort bit. I was still thinking of the idea of it being a retail one, in which case it would require a massive new technology and asset outlay to look up to date. Not that it looks bad as such, but people seem to like their pixel shaders these days and it might have trouble competing on its own merits.

A download model would work, but couldn't fit onto something like Live. You'd need a one-off download of about a CD's worth of data containing the engine code and the shared assets for each chapter, then each download containing its specific dialogue and scripting. If we're talking keeping all the assets the same and just porting the engine to the consoles then it would be pretty economical - I wonder if the reason this hasn't been done yet is that Yu Suzuki just wants to draw a line under it.

Haven't Sin Episodes and the somewhat sporadic release of the Half Life 2 Episodes shown that this distribution model, whilst good in theory, doesn't actually work? I suppose though, going from Shenmue 1, the whole game takes place in the same locale, rather than the progressive movement of an FPS game, so maaaybee it could be done.

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Haven't Sin Episodes and the somewhat sporadic release of the Half Life 2 Episodes shown that this distribution model, whilst good in theory, doesn't actually work? I suppose though, going from Shenmue 1, the whole game takes place in the same locale, rather than the progressive movement of an FPS game, so maaaybee it could be done.

Yeah, but Sam and Max have shown that it does work. It's really down to management and what you're trying to achieve. I don't think Sin Episodes counts as it was really fucking shit, but the reason HL2 hasn't worked this way is the near-obscene amount of laid-back bluesky thinking they indulge in during the design stages. They just don't seem to work to any deadlines, so their games just get delayed for ages until they're finished.

If there was the kind of release cycle pressure that business solution developers work with then perhaps we'd have a clearer picture, but I don't think it's conducive to creative development to enforce that (even if most large devcos rely on mental crunching, I still think it's inappropriate).

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But let's say you're right, so far as the number of people who'd be interested in the game is concerned: that's considerably more than any new IP starts with at the point of conception (obviously).

Yeah, but most new IPs aren't 'walking around simulators'. I don't necessarily think that a load of media hype would translate to consumer interest. It's just not a particularly interesting game to 'sell' to people. Unless, as I said, it was changed quite significantly to appeal... but then you end up with something like Yakuza. Which I guess answers your question, sort of.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Despite all the mumblings and groaning about them I decided to work my way through both games. The DC versions, none of this fancy Xbox updated stuff, currently I'm about 3/4's of the way through Shenmue 1 and I have to say I'm loving it. I recently bought a VGA adaptor for my Dreamcast and I can't believe how much better everything looks. Not sure if you can tell from the pictures I have taken from my play through below but on viewing the game it's razor sharp and super clear. Miles better than it ever looked on a standard def TV. Still surprises me just how well it looks (and runs) on a humble DC.

A few comments have been made about the way the game controls yet I have to say I just can't understand them. The position of the stick on the controller is just in the wrong place for movement and would have made it a right pain in the arse to walk, swapping the camera with the D Pad. Not got round to 2 yet but I vaguely remember the controls being a bit different so will have to see how they compare and possibly improve.

My main point of all this rambling? The game is still a wonderful experience and still manages to hold that sense of wonder as you work your way through the story towards it's conclusion. Some of the voices given to characters can grate but luckily none of them are overbearing or given much screen time. There simply isn't and hasn't been anything to match what this game offers in a single player experience. I can't wait to start number 2 as it's always been the best of the series. God damn you Sega, wheres the third :wub:

housegardensi1.jpgroadtohousecz9.jpgdubitarighthj8.jpgdubitalefthp1.jpgharbourdw4.jpg

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God damn you Sega, wheres the third ;)

Buried in an unmarked shallow grave, along with Shenmue Online and Yu Suzuki, probably.. :)

The sequel on Xbox, a nice technical improvement on the already impressive DC version, if only someone managed to do a fan-undub for it, it would be the definitive version of the game as it already has the subtitles, just needs the voice track.

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