It was only a matter of time, sadly.
Last week, we were greeted with the disappointing news that Kickstarter-backed Shenmue 3 will not be at E3 2017, and it felt ever more likely that the game would not be ready in time for the expected ship date, December of this year. Now, with this weeks backer update, we’ve received the news nobody wanted, but everyone expected: Shenmue 3 has been delayed.
The delay is a pretty huge one, pushing back the release date by nearly over half a year; now we can expect to see the long-awaited JRPG hit shelves in the second half of 2018. Then again, the last game in the series released 16 years ago in 2001, so what’s another year to a Shenmue fan? You can check out the video released on the game’s Kickstarter Page below, in which Yu Suzuki himself apologises and gives his reasoning for the delay. “In many ways, the game has become bigger and more beautiful than I initially expected.” Suzuki states in the update. “We do, however, need more time to deliver the game to you.”
E3 2017 will mark the second anniversary of Shenmue 3’s announcement, in that oh-so-memorable Sony press conference that was full of massive announcements and updates on games we never thought we’d see, ever. Shenmue 3 was a strange one, however, because it was basically an announcement of the Kickstarter, even though Sony themselves are providing funding too. Nonetheless, people desperately wanted to see a revival of the classic series, and the game raised a cool $6.3 million, despite having a target goal of only $2 million. The news of the delay is sad but expected, but it means that Shenmue 3 will probably be a phenomenal experience, albeit a long overdue one.