The "AI Battling" Stretch Goal

(Chapter 7 and beyond)

The "AI Battling" Stretch Goal

Postby Switch » Wed Jul 11, 2018 10:09 am

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The "AI Battling" stretch goal coming up at $7m was highlighted in the last Kickstarter Update. I don't think it's a topic that has come up very much to date, so I wrote a short post if anyone needs a reminder about what it is.

I also clarify in the post the following sentence about AI Battling, taken from the English version of the Kickstarter update:
Kickstarter Update wrote:R&D for this system is based on Yu Suzuki's concept for players who are not used to fighting games or for those who want a full immersion battle experience.

I was a bit puzzled about the intended meaning, so I translated it again from the Japanese version to get the finer nuances:
Switch's translation wrote:It's a feature for which basic research has been carried out since early on in the development, based on Yu Suzuki's wish for even players who aren't used to fighting games to experience a feeling of immersion in the battles

Link to blog post:
https://www.phantomriverstone.com/2018/07/the-ai-battling-stretch-goal-shenmue-iii.html

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Re: The "AI Battling" Stretch Goal

Postby spud1897 » Wed Jul 11, 2018 11:50 am

This interests me as it sounds like Yu is trying to create a battle system for all.

The question is how is he going to do this. As we know the originals were based on the VF system which is quite complex. Now many of us enjoyed the learning of new moves and implementing them in a fight, however I have watched some playthroughs where people haven't bothered and sometimes struggled with the fighting.

How do you create a system that is easy to use but difficult to master so that those of us can go off and learn moves, practice etc.

The idea of being able to interact with surroundings sounds great but how do you make this challenging for people? All questions I am sure we will find the answer to very shortly.

Great article as usual
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Re: The "AI Battling" Stretch Goal

Postby Centrale » Wed Jul 11, 2018 2:46 pm

spud1897 wrote:How do you create a system that is easy to use but difficult to master so that those of us can go off and learn moves, practice etc.


Yu Suzuki said something to the effect that he wants to create a system that rewards making the right decisions in battles, as opposed to a VF-like system that requires lightning-fast reflexes. My speculation would be that there is something about the battle system that can be interacted with at a macro level - the player recognizes that it's currently best to be on the defensive, and wait for an opportunity to take the offensive. And in that case, a single button press would initiate a defensive posture and appropriate blocking moves that play out cinematically.

In order for the same battle to appeal to fighting game aficionados, who enjoy rapid and complex inputs, there would have to be a system in place at the same time that operates at the micro level, recognizing and responding to quick inputs. The fighting engine would need to analyze the relative speed and precision of the player's inputs and then adjust accordingly. This player acts slowly, so they have the simplified input system; this other player is entering multi-step stick and button combinations, so they have the complex input system.

To repeat, that's all just my speculation about one possible approach for a battle system.
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Re: The "AI Battling" Stretch Goal

Postby WildManofBorneo » Wed Jul 11, 2018 6:37 pm

UP YOUR PLEDGES!!!
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Re: The "AI Battling" Stretch Goal

Postby TheThirdComing » Thu Jul 12, 2018 7:54 am

I'm not seeing a big push for this so far, I'm hoping that we can achieve this by the August Deadline.
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Re: The "AI Battling" Stretch Goal

Postby The_Intruder » Thu Jul 12, 2018 10:37 am

Im going to upgrade my pledge on August 3rd to the $250 reward. I have the $175 one.
"Shenmue II reveals the true scope that the series encompasses and how this story is still just beginning. If it continues to be composed of ambitious, engrossing and entertaining titles like Shenmue II, Yu Suzuki's legacy may be best remembered for the Shenmue series."
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Re: The "AI Battling" Stretch Goal

Postby TheThirdComing » Sun Jul 15, 2018 2:54 am

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Made quick banner to push this - Is there a place to see the campaigns figure now, the one ofn the backer campaign still rather still - https://shenmue.link/order/?en
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Re: The "AI Battling" Stretch Goal

Postby Peter » Mon Jul 16, 2018 9:29 pm

I am going to be honest about this, and ive had this discussion earlier today with a few others.

You are more than free to try and get people to increase their pledges, but the Dojo as a brand will not be taking part in any campaign to try and get to "7 million".

Whilst its a nice round number, at this point in time, our focus is now to encourage sales of both the re-releases and also of course, Shenmue 3. The problem is the more copies of the game that go through the PayPal avenue risk the number of people buying the game at retail, and at this point, that's not what we need. Shenmue 4 is dependant on retail sales alone. Its been said numerous times, and if someone uping their pledge to get another copy results in them NOT buying a copy at retail then there's no way i can support that.

Crowdfunding has gotten us to where we are now with Shenmue 3, and it has indeed #savedshenmue. But its done. With additional funding from Shibuya, followed by Deep Silver, the development timescale for this game would have been locked in, and any projections for in game mechanics such as the 7 million dollar AI Battling system would have either been included, or dropped depending on those factors. With Shenmue 3 more or less a year away, i would also doubt they are going to edit the entire mechanics of a big part of the game all because there was a push at the end.

Do i think AI Battling is already in the game? Yes is do. So my advice would be to not push for a simple round figure that could jeopardise Shenmue 4, but wait until the Slacker Backer campaign is over, and then push people to buy both the re-releases as well as 3. Those retail figures are what will make the most difference.
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Re: The "AI Battling" Stretch Goal

Postby WildManofBorneo » Mon Jul 16, 2018 10:02 pm

I disagree. The sales figures for PayPal and Kickstarter will be tallied and reflected in official numbers, but more importantly though the revenue of the publisher which ultimately secures the chances of the next installment. At the end of the day it’s all revenue, whether it be it through crowd funding pre sales, purchased digitally online, or in a local retail outlet.
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Re: The "AI Battling" Stretch Goal

Postby TheThirdComing » Wed Jul 18, 2018 2:33 am

I don't really understand the sudden pullback from the campaign - well after the initial 6.3m push it has staggered for the last 2 years. How will not supporting the campaign now negatively effect sales? I thought considering the campaign was coming to a close that we'd encourage people to get involved. The idea of the 7million stretch goal was something to aim for, I jsut considered the more we put into this the more chance we have at Yu delivering the game he is content with. So now we're to just hold of as Deep Silver is going to cover everything? Just seems a little underwhelming that the community wants this campaign to fizzle out rather than end in a bang.

As for the Shenmue HD Remaster, I've bought 2 copies reluctantly due to it's technical limitations compared to previous HD Remaster releases on PS3/PS4 consoles.
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Re: The "AI Battling" Stretch Goal

Postby spud1897 » Wed Jul 18, 2018 3:18 am

I have to say I think we will hit the $7m mark with all the upgrades people have gone for. Let alone others adding on bits and pieces while the slacker is still open.

Had deep silver not become involved there may well have been more of a push on this, time will only tell as to whether we make this or not. Remember the final surveys are sent on August 13th (Slacker closes then too) and then surveys end 30th Sept. We may get an update on the figure in August and then the final total in September/October.

I'd be surprised to see backer numbers in final sales figures, only because they are essentially distributed directly to us. Shops buy the games from distributors and then sell them on so sales figures can be somewhat skewed but by a good number of us already having Shenmue 3 ordered as backers the challenge now is to ensure as many as possible buy 3.

The HD releases are a good pointer that with the right interaction and engagement a market is certainly there for Shenmue and this should help 3.

Anyway this is now wildly off topic. I want AI battling it sounds good and we shall see if we get it!
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Re: The "AI Battling" Stretch Goal

Postby Peter » Wed Jul 18, 2018 7:05 am

TheThirdComing wrote: I don't really understand the sudden pullback from the campaign - well after the initial 6.3m push it has staggered for the last 2 years. How will not supporting the campaign now negatively effect sales? I thought considering the campaign was coming to a close that we'd encourage people to get involved. The idea of the 7million stretch goal was something to aim for, I jsut considered the more we put into this the more chance we have at Yu delivering the game he is content with. So now we're to just hold of as Deep Silver is going to cover everything? Just seems a little underwhelming that the community wants this campaign to fizzle out rather than end in a bang.

As for the Shenmue HD Remaster, I've bought 2 copies reluctantly due to it's technical limitations compared to previous HD Remaster releases on PS3/PS4 consoles.


There is no pullback from a campaign, because there was no campaign to begin with outside of a few fans like yourself posting an image and Wild Man of Boreno shouting at everyone to UP YOUR PLEDGES. UP YOUR PLEDGES!!!!!

As I've explained, 7 is nothing but a nice round number. On that point, they won't even end up with 7 million after accounting for PayPal fees as well as the cost of all those extra rewards you guys want people to up their pledges and get, so the figure of "7 million" is moot. Game development doesn't work like that. It's not as if Yu-san is sitting there with a 90% complete game, waiting to see if he hits 7 million and announce another delay, so they can develop and implement a brand new mechanical component. It would have been planned for, and incuded into their development schedule, so thinking along the lines of AI battling won't be in the game because 7 million is not achieved isnt the right way to think about it.

The era of crowdfunding this game passed long ago for us. The focus now has been the sales of the game at retail, and wether people agree or disagree on that is irrelevant. It's been stated by the Executive Producer of the game numerous times when asked about the future of the series being secured, and that's the advice we take.
We are at the point now where I would much rather see the headlines of "Shenmue 3 tops the European charts for the 4th week in a row", rather than, "Shenmue 3 hits 7 million and will include AI Battling - Future of Shenmue 4 uncertain at this point". It show on a public level that this game has support for future releases, which Yu Suzuki has said himself he needs.

I didn't ask for tell people not to up their pledge. People are free to do so. Go for it! I am just saying in terms of some huge push or campaign, there's no need for it, and it's not just the Dojo who feel that way. No one out there is organising anything. I will be buying add-ons also next week, but that's because I want copies for my collection etc, and as Spud said, with add one and upgrades, they will more than likely clear 7 million anyways.
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Re: The "AI Battling" Stretch Goal

Postby KidMarine » Wed Jul 18, 2018 8:16 am

Start saving every penny you can, sell a kidney and steal from loved ones, get ready to buy multiple copies at launch.

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