SEGA recently announced that they’re bringing back Shenmue 1 and Shenmue 2 via a HD collection later this year. Should you be excited? Yes, you certainly should! Let’s get straight to the meat of the matter. If you own a PlayStation 4, you’ve more reasons to look forward to this collection than any Xbox One owner. Why? Well, we’ll take this from the top…
Shenmue was originally designed to be a trilogy of games that told one overarching epic story, releasing way back on the underappreciated Dreamcast. Sadly, only two thirds of this story were released, leaving countless fans in the cold in regards to the conclusion. The story is set in 1986 Yokosuka, Japan, when teenage martial artist Ryo Hazuki returns to his family dojo to witness a confrontation between his father Iwao and antagonist Lan Di. Ryo intervenes, but is easily put on his ass. Lan Di demands Iwao give him a mysterious stone artifact known as the dragon mirror.
When he threatens to kill Ryo, Iwao tells him the mirror is buried under the cherry blossom tree outside. As Lan Di’s men dig up the mirror, Lan Di mentions Zhao Sunming, whom Iwao allegedly killed in Mengcun, China. Lan Di delivers a finishing blow and Iwao dies in Ryo’s arms. Thus starts the beginning of Ryo’s quest to avenge his father’s murder, taking him to some wonderfully created environments alongside a stellar cast of characters. Shenmue was way ahead of its time when it first released. The gameplay, the visuals, the depth, everything was absolutely breathtaking, unique and in-depth. Fast-forward nearly two decades and here we sit, still none the wiser as to how this story eventually plays out. That, however, is all about to change.
Shenmue III is finally coming, however it’s only coming to PlayStation 4, unless it’s eventually confirmed for Xbox One post-launch. This is a very sticky subject at the moment because many Xbox fans would indeed enjoy playing this conclusion (with I and II on the way, it certainly makes sense) but sales, as always, play a vital part. Games don’t tend to sell nearly as well on Xbox as they do on PlayStation 4 or even the Switch.
My advice, if you own a PlayStation 4 or both an Xbox One and PlayStation 4, fill your boots. Shenmue simply needs to be enjoyed by as many people as can be. Though, if you only own an Xbox One and this game doesn’t eventually come over, you’ll be left feeling the very real pain that many of us have been feeling for nearly two decades now. Believe me when I say, it’s a deep cutting pain. You can see the trailer for Shenmue I and II HD above, as well as check out info regarding the third and final chapter, right here.