The creator of the beloved Shenmue series, Yu Suzuki, has expanded upon the funding model of the recently announced third game.
When news arrived that Shenmue 3 would finally be made after a 14 year hiatus, it was the gaming equivalent of Netflix announcing the return of Arrested Development.
Here too was a cult property that completely failed on commercial terms in its initial iteration, but an abundance of critical good will ensured that its stature grew massively in its absence.
However, some have questioned the specific funding arrangements for Shenmue 3. What part will Sony play? What is partner company Shibuya Productions adding to the pot? Will either be taking a slice of Shenmue 3’s multi-million dollar Kickstarter fund for their troubles?
This has prompted Yu Suzuki to issue an update on Kickstarter discussing these very matters.
Suzuki reveals that while he saw Kickstarter as the best way to initiate Shenmue 3’s development, he knew that he would also need to turn to more traditional methods of funding in order to fulfill his ambitions. The first two Shenmue games were extremely costly to make, after all.
While Suzuki refuses to go into specific details on the agreements made with the two aforementioned companies, he does say that thanks to their “assistance on the production and marketing end, and in Sony’s case with some publishing support as well,” his company Ys Net will be able to “use more of the money we collect through Kickstarter purely for Shenmue 3’s development.”
The creator also assures Shenmue 3’s Kickstarter backers that “your funds are going strictly to Ys Net for development of Shenmue 3 – Sony and Shibuya Productions are not seeing a cent of your Kickstarter dollars.”
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Suzuki recently revealed that only if the Shenmue 3 Kickstarter campaign hit $10 million of funding would he be able to realise his full open-world vision for the game.
Shemue 3 is currently at $3.6 million with 22 days to go.
Check out how the PS4, which will be the only console to get Shenmue 3, compares to the Xbox One in the video below.