Yu Suzuki needs $10 million to make a truly open world Shenmue 3 - Sony's involvement with the game

Speaking to Eurogamer's Oli Welsh last week, Sony's president of worldwide studios Shuhei Yoshida provided a little more clarity on the relationship. "I cannot talk about the specifics of the deal, but I can talk about the set-up," he said. "It's the third-party relations team's work. They've been supporting many indie developers - you've seen Adam Boyes or Shahid Ahmad showcasing indie developers over the last few years. When the third party relations team identifies some great indie game being developed they strike a deal so it comes on PlayStation first on console, or something like that.

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Ezz20131034d ago

****If Suzuki's Kickstarter is successful [and very quickly after our conversation it was], SCEA will add funding and other support." ****

That's pretty much confirms it.

1033d ago Replies(4)
Articuno761033d ago (Edited 1033d ago )

Nope. You are making the same mistake/spreading misinformation that every other site there has through assumption.

By funding they don't mean development funding but marketing/production funding. I don't know how but for some reason "some funding" became "footing the bill for". That's simply not the case:

A little more from Dan Shoe (Senior Partner Alliance Manager at PlayStation):

The Twitter account of someone who works for Shibuya Productions, the outfit tasked with handling the PC version of Shenmue III:

If anyone is telling you that Sony is outright funding this game tell them to give you a source. I've yet to see a single claim that has done anything more than misconstrue a vague comment where there's room for misinterpretation.

And that worries me because if Sony WAS suppporting Shenmue III in the capacity people think they are there would be nothing to worry about. But the sad fact is they aren't, and the Kickstarter has ground to a hault because people don't realise that.

showtimefolks1033d ago

Maybe Sony isn't outright funding the game. But if you think that Sony won't chip in for development than you ate delusional. Sony may not pay for whole development but they may pay for part of the development and provide the man power to Suzuki

If people think that shenmue 3 will cost 8 to 10 million than they are seriously wrong. Shenmue 2 cost was over 70 million, now I am not saying it will be that much. But shenmue 3 will cost 20 to 30 million at the least

Atleast be thankful to Sony that they are supporting shenmue 3. It was in the limbo got years, so I am glad Sony stepped up

Both of the other console makers had an opportunity to make this happen

Articuno761033d ago (Edited 1033d ago )

showtimefolks: I'm working with facts here. Not speculation. Sony (or one of the other unnamed investors) may chip in with development, but we don't know to what extent or what that funding (if it existed) would be contingent on.

For all we know the contingent factor could be the Kickstarter itself. Yes Sony "may" chip in (and I sure as hell hope they do), but we don't know that for a fact and can't bank on that happening.

Also, your figures for Shenmue are quite off base for several reasons (you are the first person I've seen use the 70m figure for Shenmue II alone as well):

I agree that they probably aren't going to get this game done on 10 million. But it is damaging (and baseless) to go around telling people Sony is funding the development of this game when all the solid evidence and facts point otherwise.

Again, if you think otherwise show me some sources that are more reliable or current than my own. I've yet to see any.

yarbie10001033d ago (Edited 1033d ago )

I think you're spreading misinformation. You can not say Sony is not funding part of the game. No where in any of those links that you posted does it say Sony isn't helping fund the game and ONLY doing marketing and PS4 publication. In fact, that first twitter post says Sony isn't funding All of the game.

NO WHERE can you find where Sony says they are ONLY paying for Marketing/Production.

You're doing the exact thing that you're mad at others for doing by using your own interpretation to see it how you want to. But the fact is, there still hasn't been complete transparency on whose funding what and how much their getting. PERIOD.

Articuno761033d ago (Edited 1033d ago )

@Yarbie: Actually Sony is treating it like a third-party production. Which automatically rules out full-funding.

If there's partial funding involved we have no reason to believe so (yet) and some reason not to:

"In the interview, when asked about funding sources Yu Suzuki said he could not divulge all funding details but that he expects the Kickstarter campaign to provide most of the games development cost."


An unusual stance if Sony is funding the game (in a significant capacity).

Read the Shoe comment again "Sony is providing marketing and production support. That requires money and resources".

If Sony were indeed providing funding for development itself this reads very unusually, don't you think? Doesn't funding development require money as well?

I do see what you are saying though and we do need more transparency on the subject. But putting logical two and two together we can already rule out that Sony is "funding" the game.

And I use emphasis there because when people say "funding" they immediately equate that to footing the bill for the game altogether.

There's a world of difference between running with an assumption (what many sites are doing) and putting the complete image together with some cracks.

And there's a major difference besides: I'm not damaging the project if my (sensible) deductions turn out to be wrong. Rescind your pledge. Problem solved.

There's a big difference between Sony revealing it is funding the game vs not funding it (beyond what we know) and that is incentive: It looks good on Sony to reveal the former, but not the latter.

In other words, if the former were true it would be very strange for Sony to tip-toe around the issue. Whereas if the latter is true it makes sense that Sony would.

Gh05t1033d ago (Edited 1033d ago )

Why on earth would they have Sony publish a game they arent backing financially?

Otherwise I am sure they could get more funds from another publisher and still have it PS4 exclusive.

rainslacker1033d ago (Edited 1033d ago )

Why do people need more transparency? Do we ask any other publisher to provide the details of the individual investors? It seems to me Sony has clearly stated what their role is right now, they are handling the PS4 port, and doing marketing for the game. What would more transparency change?

Do any of you have any idea how many investors there are for the games we play? Not a single publisher funds their game in it's entirety, and never does anyone ever hear who these individual investors are. Half the time, the console makers themselves are also investing in these 3rd party games for whatever reason, yet no one seems to care.

That being said, why do so many people care? The KS investors are find giving their money, if you aren't, then so be it, buy the game at $60 when it comes out, while not participating in any of the polls that will go towards giving the fans a game they want, or not getting any of the extra goodies.

If you have a problem with Sony doing a port and marketing the game, and you already invested, then pull your funding. It's not complicated.

But for Christ sake, stop acting like any of you are entitled to more information than what has already been given. Sony and the dev have been very quick to clear up any confusion. If you can't accept their answer which have all been clear, then it sounds like the problem is you, and not the KS or Sony.

I'm going to lay it down as simply as I can for people who can't think for themselves. Sony's current involvement is the same thing they have for No Mans Sky. They are handling the PS4 port, and are helping to market the game. The ONLY DIFFERENCE between NMS and Shenmue is that NMS has private investors that no one knows about, and Shenmue has private investors and are also using crowd funding as a source of capital.

It's not that complicated, nor is it shady or Sony trying to pull the wool over anyone's eyes.

+ Show (3) more repliesLast reply 1033d ago
Enigma_20991033d ago

Then you know what? SONY and Suzuki should have been open about it from the f*****' start. The way it was revealed just felt a little dirty.

JackStraw1032d ago

It didn't feel dirty. People are just clueless. They still think it's hard to grasp, and it's not.

Enigma_20991032d ago


.. people are clueless.. BECAUSE THEY WEREN'T TOLD ANYTHING!!!!

This basically flies in the face of what people intend with their Kickstarter pledges. Helping the developer directly without the publisher being involved. And if this couldn't happen without Sony's involvement, and they believed so much in this project, why the Kickstarter at all?

There are ways to gauge people's interests in something without asking them for money.

Neonridr1034d ago

"because third party relations is third party relations"..


DEEBO1034d ago

So sony will help fund the game.maybe MS needs to look back into their past and find games that xbox one owners want to play.

Brutal legends,jade empire something.what they need to do is crank up the amps and add more power to the next xbox.

Rimeskeem1034d ago

Sony is funding the marketing

Volkama1033d ago

Maybe. We don't truly know the specifics of the deal, and we never will. That is entirely normal.

I suspect there is something in there that says "no, Microsoft cannot pledge money into the kickstarter to add an Xbox One version launching on the same day" though. That'd cause quite a stir round N4G lol.

DigitalRaptor1034d ago

I think modern gamers have a different definition to the phrase "open-world" to Yu Suzuki. And of course he hasn't made a game of this size since Shenmue II, so his definition or perspective of that might have changed.

Anybody expecting a Witcher 3, GTA or Fallout 4 kind of open-world for $10 million, you're looking at it wrong. I believe Suzuki-san is talking about open in the sense of incredibly detailed environments in which you can interact with what you see. It's nothing to do with the scale we expect from the traditional open-world genre. It's open in the deeper and more inward sense, rather than on an outward scale. The story that will be set in a rural Chinese village would not make sense being in an open-world as most people expect.

In terms of the $10 million budget, it's starting to sound more and more realistic of a goal for the kind of game Shenmue III is supposed to be according to Suzuki-san. The original 2 Shenmue games were actually on a budget of around $45 (despite Sega's claims at the time). Split that in two for each game and it's $22 million. Then you consider that the R&D to implement brand new never before seen features in gaming had to be heavily researched and prototyped for years before developing the game, creating a powerful game engine, and that was going to be a large part of the budget. Then you consider that Sega made what was a prototype for the game for the Saturn, which was a 4-year build and included both games. That version was then scrapped and the Dreamcast version was built from scratch. Think about how that kind of R&D and eventual overhaul cost in terms of budget.

So from that roughly $22 million for the first edition of Shenmue on the Dreamcast, how much do people think was for the 4-years of spent development of the Saturn version, and how much was the grand scale R&D for brand new ideas for an incredibly innovative and ambitious project? It's going to be a lot.

YSnet already has an engine to use in Unreal 4. They don't need to research the tech because they have it. They don't need to write the story or produce characters because they've already been in concept in the man's mind for 14 years or longer. They are independent but a budget of a perceived "inadequate" $10 million will push this concept closer than people think. This might be me dreaming, but it sounds reasonable, and even if they only manage $6 million out of the kickstarter campaign, sourcing another 4 million over the next few months probably won't be impossible. I just want to see this project through to what I've been waiting 14 years for.

Articuno761033d ago

Agreed. Shenmue is more of a giant closed-world game. Basically a whole town, but with the detail of an extremely closed-world game. That's why it was impressive, unlike these modern open-world games that are just copy-and-paste missions.

DualWielding1033d ago

10 million still sound low

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