Do We Really Want and Need Shenmue 3?

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shenmue ryuEarlier today, Jeff went through all the hinting and rumors that suggest that maybe, just maybe, 2014 could be the year that Shenmue returns and we finally get Shenmue 3. Which would be an interesting prospect, and one that would thrill many gamers who have long since waited for any news about this classic series. The thing is, do we even want it anymore?

I mean, HD remakes of Shenmue and Shenmue 2 would undoubtedly be appealing. I’d buy and play them. But, 13 years after Shenmue 2 and 15 years after the original Shenmue, I think it’s okay if the series isn’t revived. We don’t really need Shenmue 3.

To start, there’s this. In case you don’t want to watch, for fear of spoilers, it’s Yu Suzuki telling us how Shenmue 3 would end.

Okay, I kid. But think of how long it got to us to get to the point of Shenmue and Shenmue 2. A resolution to the cliffhanger would be nice, but it could be accomplished in a book. Do we really need to work a part-time job, race more ducks, and guide more human-shaped tanks to get to that point? Well, assuming Shenmue 3 would have the original’s tank controls, but I’d like to think we’ve moved beyond that as a gaming society.

Then, there’s the fact that it has been 13-15 years. That’s a lot of buildup time, and if a Shenmue 3 project were announced, there would be a lot of hype. Hype can kill games. Especially open world ones like this, where there will be all kinds of expectations. If it is resurrected, perhaps for the PS4 or Xbox One, people are going to want it all. Everything they’ve been dreaming of for the last decade would have to be in that game to make most fanboys happy, and I just don’t think any developer is capable of delivering under that kind of pressure.

Finally, there’s Yakuza. Yakuza has always been the spiritual successor to the Shenmue series. It’s gained quite a bit of popularity, and has a vocal fanbase, but it isn’t one of the biggest open world series. It isn’t even close. The fact that Sega already has something so similar, and hasn’t even taken a chance on releasing the fifth game in that series outside of Japan yet, gives pause as to whether Shenmue 3 would even be popular and profitable enough to make the resurrection worth the effort.

It would be great to see a Shenmue game at E3 2014, be it an HD port of one of the original two games or a Shenmue 3 announcement. I just don’t think the third game needs to be played. Frankly, I’d be happy to go play Yakuza 4, or hear a Yakuza 5 announcement, instead.

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  • John Drake

    Another Yakuza? Really? We already know how it’s going to end too. Guns firing and blood everywhere. Do we really need to play more of its inferior, Shenmue wannabe gameplay to see that shit? **** Yakuza. We have much relevant story to see in Shenmue.

  • wispartan

    Your with us or your against us…

    I think this link is a good indication that allot people want Shenmue in there life more now than ever, considering FPS Market has gold age hopefully is losing its grip and we can finally get back into real gaming if a game like Journey that gets amazing reception from people I think Shenmue would get just the same welcoming and possibly even better reception.

    I do not know if you are aware of the group on Facebook Shenmue500K and also the social thunderclap phonemon by Teamyu that Shenmue fans partake in every month on the 3rd with the hashtaag: #saveshenmue the reach has broken records every month.

    Yeah we need shenmue

  • Samy

    I disagree with this article, to resume : Do we need to play?
    If you prefer to kill everybody with weapons in each game, play at kits games without originality, do always the same thing with just different graphics, what do I have to say ?
    We want to know the end of the story, it’s an original story , an original experience, we don’t ask Shenmue to be the technological showcase it was before. Even if the Shenmue 3 wouldn’t be as good , I would love to play it, and would take all my time to play it. I want Shenmue 3, we want Shenmue 3 , we have a lot of gay games everyday, we want SHENMUE 3

  • Jonathan Dogey

    100% wrong and I hate articles like this because they’re only written by people who think it’s hopeless shenmue 3 will ever be made. What’s more, anyone who’s actually played these games would not agree. The story’s ending is anything but predictable, especially since shenmue 2 focused more on stopping the quest for vengeance rather than fueling it. And the side story with Shenhua is also taking things in a direction I didn’t expect.

  • George

    No one cares what you think. The Fans want Shenmue. Bring it back.

  • hazardous matterial

    The way I see it. People have waiting long enough and worked hard to get the series recognized to the point it’s at today. Articles like this seems to be more a slap in the face to those who have put their time and effort into getting shenmue put back on the map. Yu may have spoken of what happens in the third installment but that is not the same as experiencing it for yourself. I am a massive fan of the series to the point nothing since has drawn me into playing to the end then restarting again straight away. I can easily say that if this got a release. I would pre order 2 copies (one for display with the others).
    My answer is yes we need shenmue 1/2 hd and 3 as just about everything released nowadays is pretty bland and seem to mostly run the same generic formula.

  • Wull

    Do we need Shenmue 3? The vast majority of people who played the original games loved and finished them. Regardless of morons in the press who think it’s fashionable to mock the ‘banality’ or ‘tedious’ elements of Shenmue, the fans who love the series ignore that bullshit and continue to campaign for the next installment. There is no other game in history that has been dormant for such a long time and still received continued support from fans. So yes, we need Shenmue 3 and will continue to encourage Sega to give it the green light.
    Make no mistake, Yu Suzuki is more than up to the task of delivering something phenominal.

  • Rand

    100% wrong … we do need shenmue 3 or at least remake of the series in HD

  • Jonathan TF

    Tank control are the best. If you can’t use’em then you suck.

  • Dave Dragon

    LOL at this article. What a ridiculous person. So, Shenmue 3 is unnecessary because:

    A. It has been 13 years since Shenmhe 2 was released,


    B. Yakuza.

    ……. What?

    Ok I have some questions:

    1. What is the statute of limitations on the number of years one can wait before making a -planned- sequel?… Not an afterthought/cash-in/Godfather III — but a *planned* sequel. I only ask because I was not aware that such a boundary existed.

    2. How is it that a “spiritual successor” is supposed to satiate the Shenmue fanbas in lieu of the story’s final chapters? If you were reading Casino Royale, and only had five chapters left, would you be alright with me me taking the book out of your hands and handing you a copy of some other totally unrelated spy novel?? I’d hope that you’d say, “Give my fucking book back, that was a really good story and I want to finish it.”

    3. You suck. — Why? WHY would you publish this article at a time when Shenmue fans have more hope than we’ve been able to find in the past ten years or more?? WHY????? Don’t be that guy. There are enough Shenmhe haters and critics out there already, and they are all stupid idiots without a future. Do not become one of them.

  • Mooncalfian

    Yes. Yes we do want and need Shenmue 3. To say it shouldn’t be made just because maybe it will be disappointing is not only lacking in logic, but it’s also cowardly. If it turns out bad, that doesn’t unmake the first two games, and you can ignore it ever happened if that’s your pleasure. Not wanting a sequel just in case it’s doesn’t live up to expectations is like not wanting to go outside just in case you get mugged.

    You say the game has aged badly or we’ve moved on as an industry and I absolutely disagree. A journalist played it for the first time just a couple of months back and marvelled at how well it had aged, and how it did things that games today don’t even attempt.

    Furthermore, anyone who says Yakuza is anything like Shenmue, doesn’t understand Shenmue at all and has no business speaking for Shenmue fans.

  • Cool J

    Whilst the Yakuza series isn’t perfect, I do believe some of the staff the worked on Shenmue worked on these games. The first game is a bit weak and so is the one with Zombies… but, the fourth game is actually quite awesome.

    I don’t Shenmue III will happen. Part of me dreams that somebody will take notice of the fact it’s loyal fanbase is so committed it accidentally finds these articles because they are still hoping one day there will be news.

  • Ic4ntf33lm4f4c3

    This may sound messed up but I think I speak for everyone when I say **** you ! Shenmue 3 needs to be released I didn’t spent all them hours into a great game with an amazing story to be left incomplete

  • Niall

    There are odd terms all round.

    1. Who is this we you refer to?
    2. Why would anybody NEED any given video game?

    Speaking personally, I would love to play a remake or sequel. Not everybody who played Shenmue loved it as much as I did, but those who played and loved it continued to play and replay it for many years after the last release.

    I mean, I loved other DC games. Jet Set Radio was brilliant. Powerstone was fun. Soul Caliber and Crazy Taxi remain very playable. Skies of Arcadia and Granadia 2 never got the credit they deserved.

    But Shenmue stood head and shoulders above all of these games. I might really like a new JSR game, but I don’t check to see if there has been any news every week. Shenmue’s world had a depth that has yet to be equalled by any game in the past decade. There was a lot to invest in and for those of us who invested in that world, it is past time to go back.

  • prettyboytoasts

    Wrong, we do want and need shenmue 3

  • matthew

    I think we should have shenmue 1,2 all remade in hd and bring out shenmue 3 and then shenmue 4 like it should of been 15years ago the only problem is cost to make money each game would probs cost £40-50 and how many people will spend that all 4 games will cost £100 which is alot of money but we need the ending no point bring out shenmue 3 or 4 on its own we have to play the full story from 1-4

  • Steve McDougald

    Shenmue is the game that really got me into gaming. Before Shenmue all I did was play sport games. They have to finish the story for me. I haven’t bought a new gen system yet and I definitely lean more towards the X1. If PS4 came out with Shenmue I would call bets off and get it instead. I responded to this article with the hopes that it was possibly written to see if there would be reponses to it. People besides me are hoping and waiting for this game. I hope someone makes it happen.

  • Joe_HTH

    The first two Shenmue games weren’t worth a crap, and they weren’t successful by any definition of the word.

  • Colin Mcsperritt

    Given how overrated 1 and 2 were… meh. I remember wanting those games so badly at one point and changing my mind immediately after playing them. Not sure why they had so much fandom.