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Securing Shenmue's future

After the long 15 year wait, the uninaginable happened, we were presented with the surprise announcement of Shenmue's return with its much anticipated third game of the franchise. Sony played and continues to play a major roll in this. Would Shenmue 3 ever happen without Sony? Unlikely. I am in no manner a Sony fan, however I am highly appreciative of their efforts on this risky project. They have played their part by investing in a project which was and still is a risky project to invest in.

Our job in the continued surival and completion of the franchise is making Sony's investement pay off. The obvious way to do this is to buy the game. However even just buying the game needs to be analyzed for the best results.

I, along with many others have used the Kickstarter campaign to order both the standard PC download version and the $120 PS3 physical version (The $120 version gives lots of extra perks such as your name being in the credits and the demo version). This is where the questions begin.

Do Sony benefit from the PC version purchase? Lets take that a step further, do Sony benefit from the PS4 version purchase? According to Yu Suzuki, the answer is no. He says that every cent donated to the Shenmue 3 project goes directly into the development of the game. That is great for us as fans as it will bring us a better experience in playing the game. However, this doesn't do much to ensure the future of the franchise.

I am sure it has worked out well for Sony in terms of them needing to invest less money in the game themselves (one would assume that they are investing themselves). However, no business is just about cutting costs, it is about making money. So if in Suzuki's own words, Sony is not gaining any money from the Kickstarter, you would assume the only way for this to happen is for people to buy the PS4 version once it is released.

This is what worries me. Shenmue fans are passonite and vocal about their love for the Shenmue experience. We were happy to pay our hard earned money to contribute to the Shenmue cause. How many of us are going to contribute to its future by paying again? My guess is, not many. How many people are going to buy Shenmue 3 that did not contribute to the Kickstarter campaign? My guess is, not enough.

We should continue to enjoy every moment that the Shenmue series lives, because if my thoughts are correct, that time has a fast approaching expiration date. We may never get to see the conclusion of Ryo's story unfold. We may never see Shenmue 4.
by TheByrner
Fri Dec 16, 2016 9:11 pm
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