The Shenmue 3 Kickstarter launched on June 16th, 2015. It’s been two and a half years since then, and we haven’t seen much of the game, but in this case that’s a good thing. A Shenmue sequel that could be done in two years (with today’s development standards) wouldn’t be a game that was very good.
With the new year comes a new video from Shenmue creator Yu Suzuki and animator Hiroaki Takeuchi. You know what job Suzuki has, but Takeuchi is working as CG animation producer for Shenmue 3’s cutscenes. The video they appear in cannot be embedded, so you’ll have to click this link to watch it. In the video, Suzuki asks Takeuchi how development is coming along.
Shenmue 3 is being made in Unreal 4, far better than what the Dreamcast could render. “The graphics are certainly improved over what I had in mind,” says Takeuchi. “While there are of course things that would not compare to a AAA title, they are better than what I had originally planned for and are starting to come into their own.”
Takeuchi says Shenmue 3 will feature a wide cast of characters like other Shenmue games have had, and that currently they are planning “over 100.” They’re working with a company called Lakshya Digital to handle the sheer volume of models and animations required in the game. Takeuchi also revealed he’s steering the gameplay into a more puzzle-oriented experience and that there will likely be less fighting sequences required of the player (they will happen, but sometimes in cutscenes only).
Shenmue 3 is still deep in development for PS4 and PC and has no specific release date.