The Shenmue 3 kickstarter has now been updated to include a new statement made by Yu Suzuki regarding the funding and budget of the project. Lots of websites and some YouTubers have been questioning if people should be donating to the KickStarter, some thinking that Sony is going to ‘fund the game anyway’. Most of these allegations are put to rest by Yu Suzuki himself, again, considering this isn’t the first time he has spoken about Sony’s involvement.
Sony and Shibuya Productions have been wonderful partners because they believe in Shenmue and want to see the best for the fans and the game. Their investment in (and support of) Shenmue have helped to realize a sequel that will stand proud with its predecessors. While it is not business practice to discuss the specific details of such arrangements, I can say that with their assistance on the production and marketing end, and in Sony’s case with some publishing support as well, Ys Net is able to use more of the money we collect through Kickstarter purely for Shenmue 3’s development. It is also important to note 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.
Like I stated in our podcast, this is basically what I assumed: KickStarter money goes into development of Shenmue 3 while Sony helps with marketing (announcing the KickStarter at their stage is a big advertisement push) and helps publish it on PlayStation 4. I would consider this to be fair, considering as fans we want all donated money to go towards a better Shenmue 3 video game and not advertising. Having this deal set up lifts the burdan of YS Net of trying to also fund a marketing budget. One more thing to note is that the whole statement didn’t mention SEGA once, making me think they licensed the name as they would stuff like the vinyl release of the Shenmue soundtrack. That means that SEGA will just make a cut on top of what the game sells.
Yu Suzuki stated in the update that he will try to be more transparent about Shenmue 3‘s development. What do you guys think of Yu Suzuki’s statement talking about the budget of Shenmue 3?