Sega Considering Re-Releasing First Two Shenmue Games - Update

Sega Considering Re-Releasing First Two Shenmue Games - Update

shenmue

"Over the next few years, we want to use engaging content and marketing to remind the public why they fell in love with Sega in the first place."

Update: The author of the Marketing Week article has posted the direct quote from Jon Rooke on Twitter. These tweets are included at the end of this post.

Original:The announcement of a crowdfunding campaign to revive the Shenmue series by way of releasing a third installment rocked Sony's E3 stage in June, with the announcement coming from series creator Yu Suzuki.

In a recent interview with Marketing Week, Sega's European marketing director Jon Rooke indicated that the company is exploring ways to re-release the original two Shenmue games (thanks, Destructoid).

"Yes, we want to innovate and back smartphones and virtual reality but our key purpose is to go back to what the brand used to stand for and I think the buzz around Shenmue III shows that people love our legacy," Rooke stated. "Sega was an innovator, the Dreamcast was offering online gaming as early as 1998. But perhaps back then we were pushing boundaries a little too soon. Nowadays we know what we're good at and the strategy is to be more gradual. Over the next few years, we want to use engaging content and marketing to remind the public why they fell in love with Sega in the first place."

According to the article Rooke "says Sega is exploring ways to re-release the original two Shenmue titles."

The Kickstarter campaign for Shenmue III broke a record on day one when it became the fastest crowdfunded game to reach $1 million, and became fully funded just hours after it went live. The campaign closed on July 17 as the most funded video game Kickstarter campaign of all time, raising $6,333,295. Crowdfunding re-opened in September, via a "Slacker Backer" campaign. A few details were recently revealed, including a new focus on romance.

As for this "engaging marketing" of which Rooke speaks, I recommend checking out the fictional Shia LaBeouf Sonic Generations DLC video, as well as the sassy Sonic the Hedgehog Twitter account.

[Source: Marketing Week, Destructoid]

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As loud as fan demand has been, and with Shenmue III right around the corner and basically providing free marketing, this seems like an obvious move. Then again, this is SEGA, and they've never been known for thinking of or doing the obvious.

P.S. Thanks

I wasn't interested in the kickstarter because I've never played Shenmue, but with the amount of hype about it both before and during the kickstarter I may give the series a go if I can play the originals now.

Ok Sega here is a hot tip on rereleasing them.
Step 1: make a kickstarter
Step 2: make the goal for a rerelease 1 mil. or whatever.
Step 3: make a stretch-goal that adds +1mil and promises a rerelease the way you actually envision it.
Step 4: make a stretch-goal that adds +1mil and promises a rerelease the way you actually envision it.
Step 5: make a stretch-goal that adds +1mil and promises a rerelease the way you actually envision it.
.
.
.
Step 11: Say for 10 mil. the game will totally be how a rerelease should be for real this time. Pinky swear.

I feel obligated to warn people that the gameplay of Shenmue may not have aged too well, do not expect it to compete with the last two gens of games. There are long QTE sequences, a lot of dialogue that may put twitchy players off; it is a bit like playing through aTV melodrama with the odd kung fu fight thrown in. There is a lot of examining unsuspecting objects too, though mostly optional, it was a unique feature at the time to show us the game's attention to detail. The game has a very slow pace, to the point of even given you a menial daily job to earn money (the forktruck racing, oh dear god, the forktruck racing!) If you're short of time and looking for excitement, it won't be for you. Though the second game does up the simmer a little as the story reaches a critical turning point.
I am a little dreading that the third game will be essentially a nostalgia trip in its' dated gameplay, there was so much more free time back then.

Xsjadoblayde:
I am a little dreading that the third game will be essentially a nostalgia trip in its' dated gameplay, there was so much more free time back then.

I'm not sure what you mean by this. That the game is long? I mean, the Shenmue games were actually not that long. HLTB says about 20 hours. That's not very long at all, imo.

That being said, I do think it is difficult to explain what makes the Shenmue games good. There's a ton of dialogue, lengthy QTE sequences, and the game makes no qualms about putting you into actual menial work. Forklifts were one thing... then there's warehouse work, and how about a game of Lucky Hit?!?!

Anyway, I wouldn't call it "dated", but I would say they're "novel". The way each Shenmue game was designed and built is still unique among it's peers. I still go back and replay Shenmue 1 from time to time. Something about going to at the pier, spending the breaks talking with coworkers and investigating leads, nursing a cat back to health, followed by spending the evening playing darts and old Sega games in the arcades.... It was very compelling.

With the hype behind Shenmue 3, this is the perfect time for a re-release of the old series... It's OBVIOUS. I know we're dealing with Sega here, but c'mon!

Dornedas:
Ok Sega here is a hot tip on rereleasing them.
Step 1: make a kickstarter
Step 2: make the goal for a rerelease 1 mil. or whatever.
Step 3: make a stretch-goal that adds +1mil and promises a rerelease the way you actually envision it.
Step 4: make a stretch-goal that adds +1mil and promises a rerelease the way you actually envision it.
Step 5: make a stretch-goal that adds +1mil and promises a rerelease the way you actually envision it.
.
.
.
Step 11: Say for 10 mil. the game will totally be how a rerelease should be for real this time. Pinky swear.

Step 12: Take down any videos with Shenmue in the title to avoid confusion.

Step 13: Refuse to release the remakes in the west because they won't make CoD numbers.

Tohuvabohu:

Xsjadoblayde:
I am a little dreading that the third game will be essentially a nostalgia trip in its' dated gameplay, there was so much more free time back then.

I'm not sure what you mean by this. That the game is long? I mean, the Shenmue games were actually not that long. HLTB says about 20 hours. That's not very long at all, imo.

That being said, I do think it is difficult to explain what makes the Shenmue games good. There's a ton of dialogue, lengthy QTE sequences, and the game makes no qualms about putting you into actual menial work. Forklifts were one thing... then there's warehouse work, and how about a game of Lucky Hit?!?!

Anyway, I wouldn't call it "dated", but I would say they're "novel". The way each Shenmue game was designed and built is still unique among it's peers. I still go back and replay Shenmue 1 from time to time. Something about going to at the pier, spending the breaks talking with coworkers and investigating leads, nursing a cat back to health, followed by spending the evening playing darts and old Sega games in the arcades.... It was very compelling.

With the hype behind Shenmue 3, this is the perfect time for a re-release of the old series... It's OBVIOUS. I know we're dealing with Sega here, but c'mon!

Perhaps i spent more time obsessively checking out the game's secrets snd general tiny details than other players have, which would be no surprise :). There will be modern gamers that go into these games expecting things they will not get, then go online and rant about it being overrated/hyped. I am hoping to inform them to avoid that same old pitfall. Half life 2 suffers the same fate.

If they do rerelease these games, it would make me more likely to buy them, and by extension buy shenmue 3. So a good idea assuming people are thinking along the same lines as I, being someone who never played the games but had people get excited about the Shenmue 3 announcement.

While you're at it, test some more waters and do an HD Collection of Shinobi/Nightshade. I'd fucking lose my mind

Xsjadoblayde:
snip

From what I've heard and seen (I've never played the originals, but have watched a very informative let's play) it's not too dated. While I think some of the "Wow, this is the next generation of video games! This is the future!" has worn off, I still think the world exploring is unique and simple enough that it's hard to age badly. Hell I was playing D4 earlier, and that game's basically a simplified version of what was in Shenmue. If I remember correctly it also uses a fighting engine similar to Virtua Fighter 4, which is still a pretty solid fighting game, the only snag is that it's hard target specific enemies. And with the QTE's, again, I'm playing D4 15 years later and it basically does the same thing. Both games are more about the story anyway.

Tohuvabohu:
snippity

I think what makes Shenmue memorable is attached to the world you felt. It had a great atmosphere and while it did have some dumb menial work, I think it was successful in making you feel attached to Ryo and his journey. I think it captures that kind of something you see in movies a lot, where after seeing a character's struggles you really want them to succeed.

Yes por favor, I played the first Shenmue and agree it was epic and could fully understand why the tale needed to be finished, but to my great shame I never got to play the 2nd.

So yeah pc rerelease please, a lot of people never played it and I think it's one of those games that might have aged decently too, even the graphics.

Xsjadoblayde:
There will be modern gamers that go into these games expecting things they will not get, then go online and rant about it being overrated/hyped. I am hoping to inform them to avoid that same old pitfall. Half life 2 suffers the same fate.

As someone who doesn't get why HL2 is considered so good (HL1 is miles better IMO), I want to hear what you think people are missing.

Ah, Sega. No company is as horrible at remembering it has some great classic games under its belt that it might want to maybe remaster and rerelease.

As someone that loved Shenmue 1 back in the day, but never got my hands on 2, this is excellent news. I'm sure those games haven't aged well, but give me a remastered collection and I won't give a damn, cause I'm gonna play them.

step1999:

Xsjadoblayde:
There will be modern gamers that go into these games expecting things they will not get, then go online and rant about it being overrated/hyped. I am hoping to inform them to avoid that same old pitfall. Half life 2 suffers the same fate.

As someone who doesn't get why HL2 is considered so good (HL1 is miles better IMO), I want to hear what you think people are missing.

It would appear you have proven my point quite aptly. Though i may not have worded it effectively, it is easy for me get lost in a land of distracting nonsensical words that do not bode well in translation, apologies for that. Your question has been asked and answered immeasurable times already online. However, i was specifically attempting to imply that Half Life 2 has not aged well. It was a pioneer of its' time for its' technological advances. Shenmue did things that no other game did, so it stood out. Even if Shenmue 3 doesn't innovate, however, most people will be happy with seeing some semblance of conclusion to the story. It had an eye-opening cliffhanger, reminiscent of a certain other video-game that many consider overrated. ;)

 

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