The development of Shenmue III seems to be a long one. Eighteen years have passed between the latest entry and Shenmue II. For nearly two decades, fans weren’t sure if their favorite game would ever return. Then the seemingly impossible: Yu Suzuki’s Shenmue III Kickstarter campaign amassed more than 7 million dollars and more than 69,000 supporters. The third chapter in Ryo Hazuki’s quest for revenge was released in 2019 to mixed critical reception and perform “well” financially. Suzuki has recently voiced enthusiasm for Shenmue IV but primarily wants the game to be more accessible to newcomers.
Based on VGC, Suzuki talked about Shenmue IV at a special event in Yokosuka, the city where the story takes place. Suzuki says that Shenmue IV was created with longtime fans in mind, which may have unintentionally alienated newer players. Although pleased with the overall response to the game, Suzuki felt that it was not a good entry point. Currently, there are no “specific plans” for Shenmue IV, but Suzuki wants to make sure it can appeal to a wider audience.
“With Shenmue 3, I really respond to the voices of the fans, so I’m not necessarily thinking about making any money,” Suzuki announced at the event. “But since I was running a company, I had to think about what could be sold if I continued. I’ve said it over and over again seriously. ”
Publisher Deep Silver’s parent company, Embracer Group, released a statement on Shenmue III’s financial success in 2020 during an earnings presentation. CEO Lars Wingefors stated that the third game is a “core niche product.”
There are no confirmed development plans for Shenmue IV. Despite this, Suzuki has stated interest in continuing the series. In other news, Square Enix sold Crystal Dynamics, Eidos-Montréal, etc., including Tomb Raider IP, to Embracer Group.
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