It took twelve years of silence since the previous game, an unanticipated announcement at this year’s E3, a month-long crowdfunding and social media campaign, and a total of 69,320 backers to #SaveShenmue, but the once impossible dream is now becoming reality. Shenmue III, the long awaited third installment to Yu Suzuki’s cult classic franchise from the SEGA Dreamcast era, reached the end of its Kickstarter campaign last night after it first launched for a requested $2 million in funding. In the end, the game managed to garner well over three times the minimum amount with a staggering end total of $6,333,295!
From the moment of its unveiling during Sony’s press conference at E3 2015, Shenmue III was met with nothing short of a constant outcry of support from fans old and new throughout its campaign, up to the point of even crashing Kickstarter as a whole when the page first went live. It had already amassed a million dollars within just its first two hours of funding, a record previously held by Playtonic Games’ fundraiser for Yooka-Laylee, and then surpassed Koji Igarashi’s Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night in becoming the highest funded video game in Kickstarter history. With all of this having happened thanks to nearly 70,000 backers, the amount of hope, love, and faith people have for this game-to-be cannot easily be made light of.
Beyond the $2 million goal, the following stretch goals are set to be incorporated into the final game:
- Additional subtitles in French, German, Spanish, Italian, and Portuguese
- Shenmue I & II “Cinema Shorts”
- Rapport System
- Skill Tree System
- An expanded and more advanced Battle System
- Extra missions within Baisha Village through a Battle Event, an Infiltration Mission, an additional quest, and bonus mini-games
Shenmue III is currently aimed for a late 2017 release.