Yu Suzuki has taken to Kickstarter to share a recap of his recent Shenmue 3 presentation at Chuapp X 2015 in China. Focusing mainly on the game’s story and structure, he said that Shenmue 3 will pick up after Shenmue 2, and that the game’s composition has been finalized. He wrote:
There are eleven chapters that make up the story of Shenmue, and those chapters are the basis for the games. Shenmue 1 comprised of Chapter 1, and Shenmue 2 focused mainly on Chapter 2, but also incorporated parts of Chapters 4 and 5. The composition for Shenmue 3 has been finalized, and will begin with Chapter 5 as the continuation of Shenmue 2, to move on past Chapter 6. The story has been written to align with this structure; and the planning for the game elements that will go along with the story have been completed.
We’re told that developer Ys Net has begun its baseline research work with UE4, which Suzuki considers to be the “most exciting” phase of Shenmue 3‘s development. Following this, the team will move on to the game design document and test-drive development processes, upon completion of which production will begin. Suzuki further wrote:
The basic systems have been put in place and we are currently testing the Destruction (when objects break) and High Ground (environmental interactivity) effects. Unlike the development from 15 years earlier, we have assets already available to us and we are in an era where we can create prototypes even without a programmer. Programs, artwork and planning have become more closely related, realizing a new type of work flow for a new age. This new work flow utilizes both game engines, which used to be very expensive, and allows for work to be done on a more open, individual basis. I hope this will lead to everyone more fully enjoying their work.
Shenmue 3 is scheduled for release in 2017 for the PlayStation 4 and PC.