Info on this site may be outdated, as the Team Yu project completed upon the release of Shenmue III in November 2019. For news on fan activity, see Shenmue Forever

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Messages - Team Yu

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Campaign News / Re: Shenmue 1 & 2 announced for PS4, Xbox One, PC
« on: April 23, 2018, 04:09:23 AM »

For nearly 400 years, an improbable cherry tree has stood in Morioka, Japan. Improbable because in order to reach the sunlight and thrive, the delicate young sapling had to gradually break its way through a giant rock which remains cracked around the base of its mighty trunk today. The famous Rock-Splitting Cherry Tree, known as Ishiwari-zakura, is a testament to the timeless beauty that can be achieved through the power of persistance against seemingly immovable odds.

As cherry blossom season came to a close this year, another strikingly hardy perennial was brought to prominence as Sega announced the return of Shenmue 1 & 2 to modern gaming platforms. Due for release in 2018 on PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC, the double pack of Yu Suzuki's original, almost 20-year-old chapters in the saga will be enhanced to include a choice of languages and control systems, and a crisper resolution befitting current hardware.

As coordinators of the #SaveShenmueHD campaign, we cannot begin to thank each and every one of you enough for your tireless support over the last three years, not to mention the #SaveShenmue variant that preceeded the Shenmue III announcement in 2015. Just like Ys Net before them, when Sega confirmed their new project with the hashtag #ShenmueSaved, they acknowledged the dedication you have all shown for this aim with your unwavering chorus of tweets every 3rd of the month. "You've asked, we listened," read their response to your requests:

What's most remarkable about your latest effort is that most people would have understood if you'd simply put up your feet and called it a day after Shenmue III was successfully crowdfunded. The majority of campaign participants will have already played Shenmue 1 & 2 on Dreamcast/Xbox or through emulation, perhaps even still having the means to do so. And there was always the distinct possibility that new versions were in the bag before Sega even saw records being broken on Kickstarter. A lesser fan base would have congratulated themselves and left the rest to fate.

But you understood the importance of making these games available to a new generation of gamers so that the series, fully restored from its roots, may stand the best chance of blossoming into future sequels that complete the story. Furthermore, you honored the implicit pact we all made with Suzuki-san that if he found a way to take a chance on Shenmue III, we would support him all the way. You didn't down tools and walk away once you got what you wanted most - you continued to do what you could to ensure Ys Net's upcoming sequel has the best circumstances and fairest opportunity to succeed at retail.

And for that you deserve unreserved plaudits and to take deep satisfaction in a job well done. THANK YOU.

Thank you, thank you, thank you.

So what now? Now that we really do have all we campaigned for?

We celebrate of course! May 3rd marks the 75th consecutive monthly Shenmue Tweetathon, the largest and longest-running social media event in gaming history. And what better way to thank Sega than by spreading the love with the hashtag they've chosen to promote their new release: #ShenmueSaved.

We'll be hoping to see your tweets about what it means to you to have Shenmue 1 & 2 freed from the obscurity of discontinued consoles, and the series as a whole finally back in production.

Throughout the day we will be giving away commemorative pin badges of the concluded campaign's familiar symbol, so look out for numerous contests on Twitter from @TeamYu. In the lead-up to the event we'll also be releasing a sneaky heads-up on our Facebook page on how to gain an advantage in winning those prizes. Preparation's not essential, but it will help...

And after May 3rd? That's when the monthly event will literally be the #Shenmue Tweetathon. With our campaigning done, the long-established tradition of tweeting about Shenmue every 3rd will still prove a useful tool for the community, maintaining momentum leading up to the launch of Shenmue 1 & 2 and subsequently Shenmue III. By keeping the name in the public eye with the most intuitive hashtag possible, fans can keep the hype alive and show all gamers that this is a highly anticipated series going from strength to strength.

So from June 3rd and every month thereafter, please tweet #Shenmue. But on May 3rd, it's all about #ShenmueSaved.

Our website will soon be updated to reflect these and other recent developments, including a new default message for AutoTweet users who will be able to edit or deactivate it should they wish to. We'll also be posting reminders of the upcoming Tweetathons during the transition between hashtags, and we look forward to publishing a short video on May 3rd that we've had in mind for some time.

But for the most part, compared with what you may be used to seeing from us since we launched the Team Yu project in January 2012, our role in the Shenmue community will now begin to reduce. Our remit has always been to campaign for the resurrection of Yu Suzuki's magnum opus, and not to duplicate the general Shenmue news-based content ably provided by some excellent resources available to fans at the following links, so please take a moment to follow, subscribe, bookmark, or otherwise attach your eyeballs to these highly recommended outlets:








We'll save the teary goodbye speech until we're signing off altogether, which won't be until Shenmue III is on store shelves, so for now we just want to thank you all again for your amazing support over the last six years and we look forward to dishing out prizes and celebrating #ShenmueSaved with you on May 3rd, the seventy-fifth Tweetathon!

For over a decade, Shenmue fans were told by the industry, the media, and by their peers to abandon hope. To let Shenmue die. But together, a determined community helped this promising series crack through every obstacle and earn a chance to flourish, supported by a following that never gave up. May your triumph inspire others and generations to come.

Campaign News / Shenmue 1 & 2 announced for PS4, Xbox One, PC
« on: April 14, 2018, 11:29:25 AM »

BOOM! And there it is. #ShenmueSaved

Sega has just confirmed a new Shenmue 1 & 2 collection by unveiling a brand new trailer during SEGA PES 2018 in Tokyo:

Updated versions of the first two games in the series will be released by Deep Silver as a single package on PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC. (Yes, you read that correctly: there will be an Xbox One version, despite the same publisher's Shenmue 3 by Ys Net launching on PS4 and PC only.)

The new collection will allow players to select between Japanese or English audio, as well as between original or new control schemes.

This announcement marks the conclusion of the #SaveShenmueHD campaign, which has been running since 2015 following the successful crowdfunding of Shenmue 3. We will have a lot more to say on this soon, including details of where we go from here as an organized community that congregates on Twitter every 3rd of the month. But for now, we are taking a short break! We'll see you back here in a week or so. Thank you so much for your support on the journey to this long-awaited announcement of Shenmue 1 & 2 on modern platforms.

In our brief absence please be sure to keep up to date with news and developments by following these reliable Facebook pages and Twitter accounts:

Campaign News / Surprise announcements promised at SEGA FES 2018
« on: April 12, 2018, 04:24:15 AM »

This weekend Sega Japan hosts its second annual SEGA FES event in Tokyo, promising "surprise announcements" amongst the two-day festivities, which are free to attend and will be streamed on YouTube and Twitch.

As usual, the Shenmue rumor mill is creaking into motion, and as usual, Phantom River Stone has fans covered with local insight and full English translations.

Will Sega use the occasion to finally #SaveShenmueHD? If not, the next Tweetathon will remind them on May 3rd. See our front page for campaign details.

Campaign News / Re: Yu Suzuki attending MAGIC 2018
« on: March 12, 2018, 02:39:49 AM »
Alongside Shenmue Forever, we had the honor of interviewing Yu Suzuki at MAGIC 2018 about Shenmue III, and also met a number of supporters of the #SaveShenmueHD campaign.

Check out our report on this collaboration and find out what Suzuki-san had to say about Deep Silver's contribution, Shenmue IV, and a range of other topics relating to the upcoming game.

Campaign News / Interview with Yu Suzuki by Shenmue Forever & Team Yu
« on: March 12, 2018, 02:38:55 AM »

Alongside Shenmue Forever, we had the honor of interviewing Yu Suzuki at MAGIC 2018 about Shenmue III, and also met a number of supporters of the #SaveShenmueHD campaign.

Check out our report on this collaboration and find out what Suzuki-san had to say about Deep Silver's contribution, Shenmue IV, and a range of other topics relating to the upcoming game.

Campaign News / Re: Help add Ryo Hazuki to new Sega mobile game
« on: March 06, 2018, 06:42:00 PM »
It's now been confirmed that if you'd like your Twitter display name to appear in the credits of the game, all you have to do is follow the official account at before release.

More information on the Phantom River Stone blog.

Campaign News / Re: Yu Suzuki attending MAGIC 2018
« on: March 05, 2018, 09:20:00 PM »
The Shenmue 500K group on Facebook have published their newest interview with Yu Suzuki, with all questions submitted by the community and put to the Shenmue III director at MAGIC Monaco.

Check it out on their official website:

Topics discussed include: character design, flashback scenes, sound effects, large-scale battles, the new combat system, fishing, and conflicting backer demands!

You can easily share the interview on Twitter at this link, and join the Facebook group here.

Still to come are further interviews carried out by fan sites Shenmue Master and SEGASaturno, as well as a collaboration between ourselves and Shenmue Forever, so stay tuned for more exclusive insight delivered by Suzuki-san directly to the fans.

Campaign News / Re: Yu Suzuki attending MAGIC 2018
« on: March 02, 2018, 05:52:00 AM »
Co-producer Cédric Biscay discussed with the emotion of playing Shenmue III, and his feelings on having to resist sharing gameplay footage at MAGIC Monaco 2018. (Use Google Translate or similar for a sufficient English version.)

Campaign News / Re: Yu Suzuki attending MAGIC 2018
« on: February 28, 2018, 10:41:00 PM »
"I have often been told that Ryo is the character who has the most difficulty capturing the atmosphere in a room and behaving accordingly, and that has not changed."

Yu Suzuki spoke with at MAGIC Monaco about Shenmue III, which is still intended for release this year.

Campaign News / Re: Yu Suzuki attending MAGIC 2018
« on: February 28, 2018, 04:20:00 AM »
The first of many interviews with Yu Suzuki conducted at MAGIC Monaco has been published, by French website Gamers Flag. The direct link is here, with our English summary below:

Asked whether the long gap between developing Shenmue II and Shenmue III provides the opportunity for a better game, Suzuki explained that it takes time to master and adapt to new technologies and techniques, however such time would not be necessary if they were to proceed to make a Shenmue IV.

Asked if there was ever a moment after Shenmue II when he thought he'd never get to tell the end of the story, Suzuki replied no, he always thought he could do it.

Asked if Shenmue III will leave the story open-ended for a Shenmue IV, Suzuki confirmed that yes, the story will remain open as it will not be possible to finish the whole plot in the third game without reducing the experience.

Asked about his feelings on the public reaction to technical aspects of the work-in-progress teaser trailer in August 2017 (including facial expressions), Suzuki was philosophical about it, noting that people don't know how development is going. As an example, he notes that the extended version shown at MAGIC 2018 does not reflect the current state of the game, and was used purely for promotion. He explained that the plan continues on their side and that while there are other things he'd like to show as soon as possible, images do not show everything - you have to play to get an idea.

Asked whether the artbook offered as a Kickstarter reward would become available to all at a later date, Suzuki said it should remain exclusive to backers.

Asked about hearing anything from Sega on the matter of Shenmue 1 & 2 remasters, Suzuki explained that it's not a subject he's able to discuss. (Our note: Be sure to join the #SaveShenmueHD Tweetathon this Saturday to help lean on Sega for an official response on this issue.)

Asked whether there are other projects he'd like to work on after Shenmue III, either as part of an existing franchise or a new idea, Suzuki smiled and, without detail, said that there are.

Asked if he'd like to some day see another console made by Sega, Suzuki enthusiastically said that he would. He noted that if a Sega Saturn were to be made now, it would be very small.

Campaign News / Re: Yu Suzuki attending MAGIC 2018
« on: February 27, 2018, 06:38:00 PM »
Merci beaucoup to for featuring #SaveShenmueHD in their live coverage of Magic Monaco!

For info on the campaign to remaster the original games in time for Shenmue III, see our front page.

Campaign News / Re: Yu Suzuki attending MAGIC 2018
« on: February 27, 2018, 02:26:00 AM »

We've just got back from MAGIC, so we've finally time to talk about Saturday's event in Monaco and the various reactions we've seen online to some of its Shenmue-related content.

Before anything else we'd like to thank all the other fans we met throughout the day. Possibly as a result of the attention that 2016's conference attracted with its exclusive preview footage of Shenhua's house amongst other material, the venue was teeming with Shenmue supporters, and all those we had the chance and the honor to speak with were great people and a credit to the community.

We'll be able to showcase the passion of these fans very soon in conjunction with the interview we conducted alongside Shenmue Forever with Yu Suzuki, whose presence had drawn so many gamers to Monte Carlo from across the globe.

The first order of the day for Suzuki-san was a one-hour conference that revisited his epic career in video games, from his many arcade hits through to the home console Shenmue series. Parts of the discussion closely echoed previous occasions that hardcore fans may recall watching online, such as the Shenmue Postmortem at GDC 2014, but the highlight of the morning was an unveiling of four new Shenmue III screenshots, which audience members initially shared via off-screen photos before higher quality versions were published via Kickstarter and the official website. The image of an expressive young girl seemingly filled with wonder impressed the most, and immediately spawned fan art from a Twitter user in Japan.

The entirely free event later hosted a 90-minute autograph session with Suzuki-san, with the line of fans snaking around the walls of the vicinity as Yu greeted person after person, posed for photos, and signed multiple items (until the half-hour advantage given to his fans over other autograph hunters threatened to prove insufficient still, forcing an eventual limit of one item per visitor to ensure everyone got their turn). Our hearts well and truly went out to the fan who patiently waited to get his Dreamcast game signed, only to then drop it and watch in horror as the brittle case smashed on the floor. Thank goodness they don't make 'em like they used to!

Closing out Suzuki's schedule at MAGIC was an appearance during Shibuya Productions' Crazy Time, a brief presentation hosted by event organizer and Shenmue III co-producer Cédric Biscay. This featured an extended version of the Gamescom teaser trailer, previously only seen by journalists. In addition to the content released publicly last year, this footage contained further characters and several QTE sequences. Amongst them, the comical screenshot released during Gamescom of a surprised older gentleman (see image above) is given context, as swinging wild punches at a dodging Ryo leads the elderly assailant to almost lose his balance, until Ryo helpfully pulls him back by the collar - before bopping him on the nose with the back of his fist.

Fans in attendance had instinctively filmed and uploaded off-screen copies of this three-minute video, until fully noticing a request made at the beginning: "The following footage was prepared for Gamescom 2017. It was shown to limited press and it is unreleased. Please do not record as it does not represent the latest of the game in development." It's for this reason you'll no longer see footage of this part of the show on the YouTube channels of sites that respect the team's wishes.

As for when we'll see video content that represents the latest build of the game, numerous events on the gaming calendar stretch out before us. GDC in March, E3 in June, Gamescom in August... any one of them could be chosen for the next big showcase of the game in motion, unless something randomly drops into backers' inboxes through a Kickstarter update first.

QTEs notwithstanding, on this occasion MAGIC Monaco was not the venue for what fans had in mind in terms of up-to-date gameplay content. That may be due in part to the hype levels encouraged by the promoters, but it's impossible to know what kind of communication behind the scenes led to such confidence being expressed in the reception that this extended teaser, so long after its creation, would achieve amongst fans with heightened expectations. However, despite MAGIC's announced expansion into an autumn event in Kyoto, Japan, few would dispute that a more significant step change in Shenmue III preview content would better reach the general audience it needs and deserves at any of the larger events mentioned above. By comparison, MAGIC is proudly a more niche, intimate setting and while perfect for the fan community to meet up and enjoy some exclusive treats and the company of Yu Suzuki, anything that might truly generate new interest in the game will surely be reserved for a larger, more mainstream platform.

So we ask that anyone hoping to be blown away by more revelatory content this past weekend not be disheartened. Shibuya Productions, whose private funding made Shenmue III a viable possibility, continues to put the fans first by accommodating numerous interviews with Suzuki-san, which you'll hear more about in the coming days, and provides free registered access to genuine bucket list experiences in Monaco and soon also in Kyoto. We're very glad they're a part of the Shenmue III project and appreciate all that they do, along with Ys Net and Deep Silver, on this long and complex road to the validation of a shared dream.

A dream that might still be "impossible" were it not for the magic weaved by Cédric Biscay just a few short years ago.

Campaign News / Re: Help add Ryo Hazuki to new Sega mobile game
« on: February 15, 2018, 10:23:00 PM »

If you've been sick of us yammering on about pre-registrations for Sega's upcoming mobile game Kotodaman, we can at least say that it was worth it. Because thanks to your efforts and those of gamers around the world (particularly, we must imagine, in Japan), the developer's target of 55,000 pre-registrations has been surpassed, meaning Shenmue's Ryo Hazuki now joins the roster of characters in this word puzzle game.

Congratulations to Shenmue fans everywhere, whose willingness to participate in this incentive now ensures more players will become familiar with Shenmue's lead protagonist and therefore, we hope, become more likely to take an interest in Shenmue III and the need to #SaveShenmueHD.

If you're still feeling productive and want to help the cause further, then be sure to activate your customized AutoTweet at for the monthly Tweetathon. This allows peace of mind that you'll never miss the event on the 3rd of each month.

The next Sega character being dangled in front of gamers for Kotodaman is another Yu Suzuki creation familiar to all Shenmue fans: the jetpack wearing hero of Space Harrier. If the pre-registration tally reaches 60,000, he'll join Ryo in the mobile game.

Campaign News / THQ Nordic acquires Koch Media & Deep Silver
« on: February 14, 2018, 06:04:00 PM »

In news that will have little if any effect on Shenmue III but is worth noting anyway, THQ Nordic has announced that on this Valentine's Day it will be acquiring Koch Media GmbH, including its subsidiary Deep Silver.

Deep Silver signed a global publishing deal last summer with Ys Net, expanding the scope of development for Shenmue III. Today's announcement confirms that all existing arrangements will proceed unhindered by the acquisition, with Koch Media continuing to operate as a separate entity and no plans for restructuring or cost saving measures.

THQ Nordic, formerly Nordic Games until its purchase of the THQ brand in 2014, is known for a variety of titles including Ori and the Blind Forest, The Vanishing of Ethan Carter, and the upcoming Darksiders III. This acquisition of Koch Media forms part of an ongoing strategy to expand its business and suite of intellectual properties.

The Shenmue IP of course still belongs to Sega, with Yu Suzuki only having the license to make Shenmue III on their say-so. Therefore Shenmue does not join the likes of Saints Row, Dead Island, and Metro as Deep Silver franchises now under the ownership of THQ Nordic.

The only aspect of this new arrangement that might affect Shenmue III is a positive one, with Deep Silver and Koch Media now able to share in the resources of their new parent group, potentially opening new avenues for marketing and distribution of the game.

Most likely we, as consumers, will not be able to discern any difference, other than perhaps the once improbable sight of the THQ brand in the credits of Shenmue III. But given how much of those credits will be opened up to Kickstarter and Slacker Backer donors, it probably won't be the most unusual line in there...

You can read today's full press release on the acquisition here.

Campaign News / Re: Help add Ryo Hazuki to new Sega mobile game
« on: February 10, 2018, 09:26:00 PM »

Help us all get Ryo into a new SEGA mobile game, and introduce newbies to the star of Shenmue in time for Shenmue III!

Just take a quick moment to carry out one or, if you can, both of these steps:

1) Follow (official account for the game).

2) Enter your email address on this Sega website, uncheck the boxes, and hit the green button.

Once enough people have done so (each step counts separately), Ryo Hazuki will be added to the game's roster of characters. This is a promotional incentive offered by the developers, who already had 50,000 fans registering their interest in the game and require an extra 5,000 to unlock Ryo. Challenge accepted!

If you'd like more information on the game, check out the Phantom River Stone blog (and look out for the contest to win an official Shenmue Yokosuka guide map while you're there!)

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