Sony’s E3 2015 press conference was one to remember. In the middle of the conference, one of the most fan requested games in history was finally announced as a timed exclusive on PS4. Yes, Final Fantasy VII is getting a remake, and the Internet lost its collective mind at the news. Considering how much people anticipated the Final Fantasy VII remake, it’s crazy to think that it was overshadowed by any another announced gaming project, in the form of one of the biggest surprises in the history of E3.
For years, the Shenmue story has gone unfinished. The first two games in the series, while greatly adored games, were unable to be financially viable due to their massive budgets. At one time, Shenmue was even the most expensive video game ever made, with a, at the time, staggering budget of $47 million. Due to the collapse of Sega’s console ambitions and the death of the Dreamcast, Shenmue went unfinished, and Sega even let the Shenmue trademark expire last year, dashing all hope for Shenmue 3. Or so we thought.
Yu Suzuki, the legendary game developer and mastermind behind the Shenmue series, appeared on Sony’s E3 2015 stage to roaring applause. The purpose of Suzuki’s appearance wasn’t to announce a new game that most thought would never get made. Yu Suzuki was at E3 2015 to announce Shenmue 3.
For years, fans have been hounding Suzuki about making Shenmue 3, and now it’s time for them to put their money where their mouths are. Shenmue 3 is being funded entirely through Kickstarter, with a very reachable goal of $2 million. At the time of this writing, Shenmue 3 has already blown by $800,000 in funding, not even half an hour since the conclusion of Sony’s press conference, and will likely greatly surpass the $2 million funding goal within the hour.
Considering that Shenmue 3 is likely to break some Kickstarter records by this time tomorrow, one can already assume that the stretch goals will be funded and then some. Some of the stretch goals include the implementation of a skill tree system if $3.50 million is raised, and expanded mini-games, an integral part of the Shenmue experience, will be incorporated once $4 million is raised.
Shenmue 3 is going to be a major Kickstarter success story before it’s all said and done, a common theme for video game Kickstarter campaigns, especially as of late. Just recently, both the Banjo-Kazooie spiritual successor Yooka-Laylee as well as Bloodstained hit all of their Kickstarter milestones. Bloodstained was particularly successful, as it has become the most crowdfunded video game of all time. Considering the blistering rate at which Shenmue 3 is collecting cash, however, don’t be surprised to see Shenmue 3 take that title from the Castlevania: Symphony of the Night spiritual successor very soon.
Shenmue 3, if successfully funded, has a delivery date goal of December of 2017. Currently, the game is only planned for release on PC and PS4.