Shenmue World is now dead [edit]

Even though we all wanted to play Shenmue City or Shenmue World (whatever you want to call it), it seems we won’t get the chance. According to Ysnet, the official developer for Shenmue Gai (the Japanese name of the game) has said that the game will cease to exist. No more updates, no more support. The site has a thank you message to all the users that played it.

This is pretty bad news for the Shenmue franchise and for hopefuls that this would lead to Shenmue III.

[Edit] It seems that this was already discussed by Yu Suzuki in an interview. Basically they are closing the mobile version of the game, but they are going to launch a ‘smart phone’ version for devices like Android and iOS.[/Edit]

Shenmue Town set to invade your smart phone

Shenmue Town (referred to here as Shenmue City) was developed for Yahoo’s mobile application and DeNa Mobage-town portal in Japan, since they have the highest market share. But what about a smartphone app release? Yu Suzuki hints that they looking into it

“From the start, I’ve been thinking of this as a multiplatform game, So I’m thinking about smartphone strategies right now,” he said, hinting that he’s looking at both iOS and Android. Suzuki said that the platforms should be fine for a port, but that “the experience definitely needs to be customized for the smartphone.” – Yu Suzuki

As for other games Yu Suzuki has in mind for the future, he says he is imagining what he can do.

“Since Apple just announced their AirPlay initiative that allows you to play music and send a single out from your phone to multiple devices, that in the future you’ll be able to beam games out of your phone to play on widescreen TVs in massively multiplayer environments. You could play against other people with your iPhone as your controller.” – Yu Suzuki

I hope that the smartphone release of Shenmue Town gets a western release, I would pay for this app. You heard me SEGA? Pay, with real money! Yu Suzuki has responded to the name ‘Shenmue City’, which we and other press have been calling the game. He says that he would call the game ‘Shenmue Town’ because its too small to be a city. If Yu Suzuki says it, then we follow. The game will now be referred to as Shenmue Town.

[Source: Gamasutra]

Forum member gets hands on with Shenmue City

Our forum upsidedown fuji has been playing Shenmue City since it launched yesterday. Yes, the lucky, sexy bastard lives in Japan and can take advantage of Japan virtues like living in the same island as Yu Suzuki and playing his games. While the rest of us hit F5 on the YS NET website waiting for Western announcements.

Enough of my bitter attitude, if you want to read his thoughts on the social game, click here.  Don’t be scared of signing up for an account, we don’t bite. Who knows, could save your life.

Shenmue City Western Release Planned – Suzuki

While speaking to games™, Yu Suzuki revealed that he is currently planning to release the Shenmue social networking/mobile game ‘Shenmue City’ aka ‘Shenmue Gai’ in English.

When asked if Shenmue City might be converted to more commonly used western platforms such as iPhone or Facebook he replies,
“There are plans but I cannot discuss them now.”

When explaining the premise of Shenmue City, Yu Suzuki said,
“We’re building Shenmue City as a social game, and each individual player is the main character. The story progresses as each player take on the role of a student who works with Ryo at his dojo, called the Hazuki Bukan.”

When talking about the future of Shenmue City, Yu Suzuki said,
“Two more stories will follow in the future’, he adds, “and if management likes our performance, more stories will be a possibility.”

Shenmue City is due to be released on Yahoo Japan’s Mobagetown service this winter and will presumably come to the west in 2011. For the full interview with Yu Suzuki, see games™ issue 104, on sale 23 December.

I’ll be playing Shenmue City no matter what… If only just to show there is support for the Shenmue series in the west. Hell if it comes to Facebook I’ll just have it running in the background as I do my daily rounds looking at photos of people I went to school with and seeing which ones are now fat, ugly, balding or pregnant.

For impressions/questions on the Cell Phone/Mobile Phone version of the game I suggest going to THIS THREAD on our forums.

Shenmue City goes live today

That is right, Shenmue City is now up to play. The only issue is that the mobile version is the only one available. Meaning if you (like myself) are waiting for the PC version, you will have to wait. That version is still in development, no release date given.

But all is not lost, you can download wallpapers (like the one above) to celebrate the launch. Sure, not as cool as getting Shenmue 3. But bear with us! I hope this means we will get some gameplay footage online.

[Via: AndriaSang]

Shenmue City update shows returning shops

[Flowers? Do you guys sale anything useful?]

Shenmue City website has been updated with a flash thing, that has scrolling city shops. If you put your mouse over the shop, you get a picture of the owner, see Nozomi up above.

It also seems the game will exclusive shops or at least shop owners. Tell me what new stuff you guys find. Also confirmed via twitter is that the game is in the last stages of development.  All I can say is, needs more Tom’s Hot Dogs.

[Thanks: Supa]

Shenmue City screenshots (mobile version)

Here are some screenshots for the upcoming Shenmue City, that we have been posting like crazy rabbits about the past couple of days. As you can see, it isn’t a MMO, but a social game like those you find on facebook that all your friends update about every 2 hours.

Regardless, I like some of the ‘ideas’ behind it, but is sure as hell isn’t Shenmue 3 (Yu Suzuki, you always say it best). The game seems very text heavy, sucks for us on here that don’t know Japanese to save our lives. Hit the jump to see more screens.

Yu Suzuki: Shenmue City is not Shenmue 3

Yu Suzuki sat down for an interview with Famitsu, to discuss the origins of Shenmue City and the future of the Shenmue franchise. He stated that Shenmue City is not Shenmue 3, so this should make most Shenmue fans breath easier.

“Shenmue has the image of grand scale.”But making something of grand scale requires appropriate preparation. 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. I wanted to carry out my obligations for the series.”Yu Suzuki

So what made Suzuki interested in making Shenmue City a social game? Mafia Wars, the popular social game you might have heard of? Well, he said he tried the game, didn’t understand it then came to enjoy it after awhile. He said that having Shenmue in this perspective was odd since it didn’t require top notch graphics and sounds, two things the Shenmue series is known for.

Shenmue City press event recap

[Two mighty men walk on stage, only one leaves alive]

The press event for Shenmue City has come to a close. What did we learn? Well not too much, but more than we knew before. The event did have a lot of ‘looking back’ at the release of Shenmue, then Sunsoft saying “We will put our full power behind Shenmue Gai (City).” How nice.

Yu Suzuki (along with Takeuchi) took the stage, to explain what Shenmue City will have to offer. They show the game, you are a student in the Hazuki  Dojo and play along side Ryo. They showed the users ‘My Page’ that gives you a list of events (missions), Kung Fu and ‘Search’ options. Search lets you find more events, Yu explains that after you do most events, you will fight a boss in the end to advance to the next stage. In the Kung Fu tab, there will be a move list that you can master.

He also explained that sometimes you will find a ‘Match’ icon in your My Page, this is when someone is challenging you in the game, but this can only happen when you ‘level up’ enough to have your own Dojo. Depending on your success, your Dojo will be ranked, the ranks actually follow the Virtua Fighter ranking system.

Yu Suzuki & Segata Sanshiro to fully unveil Shenmue City

The guys over at Sunsoft have scheduled a ‘proper unveiling’ for Shenmue City, the upcoming social game. The press conference will be at the UDX Theater in Akihabara, where people will be introduced tot he game. The event will be attended by Yu Suzuki, founder of YS.Net and main person behind the Shenmue series. Also invited to the event was Hiroshi Fujioka, who played Segata Sanshiro and for the Japanese version of Shenmue voiced Iwao Hazuki (Ryo’s father).

The higher ups at SEGA, Sunsoft and DeNA (the company that manages Mobagetown platform) will be at the event. Sadly its only for press, so some random fan can’t walk in and scream they want Shenmue 3 for a proper console.

The press conference will be on Monday, you can catch the live stream here from 15:30 to 17:15. Enjoy!

[Source: AndriaSang]

Shenmue 10th Anniversary!

Yes! It is 10 whole years to the day… Erm, yesterday. But close enough right?

Shenmue was one of the most ambitious games ever made, it cost a whopping 70 million dollars in total, is the best series I’ve ever played and… Still isn’t bloody finished.

If you have yet to play Shenmue, well you may be a ‘gamer’ but you’ve still got your training wheels on, that’s for sure. Get your act together, go buy a cheap Dreamcast and enjoy a true classic.

If you have, fantastic you are a real man. Here’s to more Shenmue, sometime in the next 10 years! Come on Sega…

Until then, Shenmue City anyone?

First gameplay details for Shenmue City arise

Of course everyone on here is waiting to get more information on Shenmue City, especially gameplay footage. Well, sadly we don’t have that just yet, but we did get a little update on what you will be able to do when the social game goes live to play.

  • Search: You will help Ryo Hazuki search Yokosuka for the man that killed his father. You will do this by completing events and interacting with over 200 in game characters.
  • Collection: Capsule toys are back. Isn’t that exciting? You will be able to collect over 100 of these suckers.
  • Game: You will help Ryo by strengthening your dojo and challenge other people’s dojos as well.

Yes, details aren’t 100% yet, so we are all still waiting for the gameplay footage. Come on Sunsoft & YS NET, give us what we want.

[Source: AndriaSang]

Mike Hayes: “Never say never” to Shenmue 3

SEGA loves teasing our poor little hearts regarding Shenmue releases. But things are turning positive, Shenmue franchise turned from a dead franchise to one with new releases. It started this year with Ryo appearing in Sonic & SEGA All-Stars Racing and now the newly announced Shenmue City. But what about Shenmue 3?

“While at present we have no plans for the franchise [on next-gen consoles], the response to CVG’s question has certainly shown the Shenmue legacy ignites a lot of passion among fans. Never say never…” Mike Hayes

I really hope he didn’t mean that he doesn’t have plans for the franchise to return next generation, because that would just piss me off. I think the Shenmue fans have been waiting long enough for their game, now deliver. YS NET is open, get them some good programmers and get this thing cracking.

[Source: CVG]