Friday, 26 September 2014

Shenmue state of mind

To understand why this game is held in such high regard by its fans, Me included comes down to a few factors that we will take a look at, Shenume is a high budget Video game masterpiece by Yu Suzuki  that started life on the saturn and ended up on the dreamcast, I played shenmue in 2001 after the launch of PS2 and all the launch titles had stagnated there was nothing else left to play,

Back then the dreamcast was on a deal for £99 with 3 games and a Visual memory card, I picked that up and a copy of shenmue, I was aware of the game I had seeing clips of it late night on channel 4’s Bits, It never crossed my mind that what they were bragging this game could do would ever actually deliver?

It did Deliver, It delivered a immerse free roaming interactive cinematic adventure fighting game, With Mini games Quick time events and fully emulated Sega classics and collectibles, That took some thinking, To think of the words to describe a game that has that much going on and once you boil it down to the main aspects you still haven't touch up the charm and atmosphere this game evokes.

As well as some twists and turns to the plot, There is drama and romance, Even a full love ballad with music video makes its way into the game as well as some great comedic moments intentional or not.
Within the game Dialog is shared with everyone ryo meets all voice acted, Just having that much speech in a console game back then was extremely impressive and was not match tell the release on Final Fantasy x on the PS2.

Playing this in 2001 and finding out that such a great game was going to get a sequel even with the dreamcasts not selling and on the way out kinda put the dreamcast up there for me, Nostalgia does play a part in shenmue, Not that the game doesn't hold up today Because I play some 360 games that don’t look as good, Just remembering playing it at a time when nothing compared to it on any other consoles and PC, There were some great games out at the time but nothing touch upon Shenmue’s attention to detail and shear Immersive Quality.

Shenmue 2 ended up on Xbox as well as Dreamcast on the dreamcast versions you can carry your save over to the next game, On the xbox version of shenmue 2 you start the game with all the items from the first game, This version also plays on the Xbox 360. The dreamcast version is subbed and the xbox version had subbed and dubbed options, The game ends on a light cliff hanger, There was originally intended to be 6 games. Fans would settle for it been wrapped up in one more game.

Over the years shenmue has gained more of a following online you will find lots of people begging Sega for a 3rd game is a good one they have a facebook page to lots of people sharing shenmue info, And then there's the Fan made stuff here is a few I found one in a HD rebuild of Dobuita HERE and a real life shenmue inspired walk around Dobuita HERE


So why don’t Sega Finish of this franchise? or at least give us HD versions of 1 & 2, It seems like the easiest thing in the world to do now is bring the first Two games out as digital downloads on all the relevant consoles, and judging by the sales of the games, At least think about given us shenmue 3. 


I know there always something getting in the way of this ever happening, But whatever the reason sega make for this not happening is it not worth spending some time and money getting the problems with shenmue sorted? Just to shut the fans up and in turn getting loads of money thrown at them by me and every other shenmue fan out there.

The biggest tease was in the Sega all star racing series in two games they have feature Ryo and in the second game Sega even placed shen 3 on the license plate, But when you see anyone from Sega interviewed and the first question is always where is shenmue 3 they always seem sick of hearing it, The likelihood of there every been a new or updated shenmue game seemed to been more likely now than ever with kickstarter and stuff like that to fund it, So Sega make it or stop holding the license to make it hostage.

Honourable mentions

There has been a few games that have in one way or another come close to the feel or vibe of shenmue, Its the only game I know of that you are comparing tone and atmosphere and not game-play with other games, So anyways here are some games that I think have a similar charm to them.


Shadow of memories

Deadly premonition


The yakaza series.

Right then I am of to look for 14 year old Timex watches on eBay until next time, Go play shenmue again or maybe for the first time.