Shenmue creator wants to make part three. Start e-mailing Sega's chequebook department now please

Says Suzuki-san, it must be a proper, full-scale Shenmue game:

"I want to make 3 with the same volume as in the past. There have actually been a lot of requests from fans for 3 as well. There were even petitions signed by by tens of thousands of people.

"Shenmue has the image of grand scale. But making something of grand scale requires appropriate preparation"

As for how to deal with Shenmue's planned epic story, originally envisioned as having 11 chapters, Suzuki seems realistic about Sega's probable likihoodof bankrolling him for nine more games. He says that streamlining will be needed in order to drastically cut the tale down to a manageable size, but that it can all be nailed down in a single, albeit massive-sounding, game covering the highlights.

As for where the story will go, sweet Jeezee, that's a job for the spectulatron, and no mistake. If you played through both currently-existing games, you'll know that after tens of hours exploring realistically-depicted '80s Japan and China in search of his father's killer, hero Ryo ended up stumbling upon a magic floating sword. Probably intended to blow our minds in anticipation of a major, head-spinning revelation in the next game, it just ended up making the pain of the thirdShenmue's no-show even more of a nightmare.

Getting from there to explaining and reconciling the existence of magic, tracking down bad guy Lan Di, resolving the whole story, and leavingplenty of time for exploring, looking for sailors and playing crusty old Sega arcade games along the way is going to take some serious ninjitsu writing on Suzuki-san's part if he's going to cram it all into one game.

Still, it does sound like one hell of a game... Here's hoping Shenmue City, Suzuki's current mobile gaming project,is a big enough successfor Sega to buy the moon.

What do you want from Shenmue 3, and how do you think its story would pan out? Still think it will ever happen? Or are you tired of Sega fans constantly banging on about it? Let me know.

David Houghton
Long-time GR+ writer Dave has been gaming with immense dedication ever since he failed dismally at some '80s arcade racer on a childhood day at the seaside (due to being too small to reach the controls without help). These days he's an enigmatic blend of beard-stroking narrative discussion and hard-hitting Psycho Crushers.