The Troubled History of SHENMUE

After over a decade of extinction the Shenmue saga finally rose from the dead when Shenmue 3 was announced at Sony 2015’s E3 conference to overwhelming applause. Since then the series has gathered mainstream attention and while there are many that adore Shenmue there are just as many who have never heard of the cult classics and are wondering what the fuss is all about.

As far as I’m concerned the Shenmue series should be up there with Metal Gear Solid and Legend of Zelda but it was never straight sailing for Shenmue. Whilst the games provided expansive open-worlds rich with life, culture and interaction fuelled by an emotionally driven storyline issues being confined to limited audiences alongside budgeting issues and numerous delays meant that Shenmue never got the time in the spotlight it really deserved.
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When SHENMUE broke the internet…

For over a decade one game has been more requested than anything. Whenever there was a “Games we want to see”…this game would always be top of the list. Since that cliffhanger ending in 2001 us fans have been waiting for 14 years to complete Ryo Hazuki’s quest to vengeance his father. Every E3 fans would wait for an announcement and every year it never came.

Funding was always the issue. The first game ended being the most expensive game ever at the time and despite being a hit Sega never made any profit from either of first two games. So, understandably Sega have been reluctant to produce a third title and we’ve been stuck in this rut ever since.

The first sign came when series creator Yu Suzuki tweeted that he was at E3 along a picture of a forklift an obvious reference to Ryo’s job in the first game. On 15th June 2015 at Sony’s E3 Conference Yu Suzuki announced what the world had been waiting for…

… and Shenmue 3 broke the internet.

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The SEGA Situation

In case you haven’t heard, for the first time ever, Sega will not be present at this year’s E3 2015 event. As the news spread around the gaming outfit; many were left wondering whether this meant something more? Sega themselves stated the reason was because of their “relocation to Southern California which is occurring at the same time.

It’s no secret that Sega have been struggling for years; focusing more on Japan and mobile gaming leaving only a trickle of games for the home console market.  Which begs the question: “Do they even have anything to show at E3?”

sega e3

For the first time ever; Sega will not be present at the annual E3 gaming Expo.

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The Future of VIRTUA FIGHTER

It’s Virtua Fighter’s 20th anniversary, the granddaddy of all 3D fighting games, which first stormed across our arcades in December 1993 but I’m surprised Sega even remembered to be honest. It’s not like Sega are known for using their vast catalog of franchises these days. VF was a big deal in the 90s but can you still say the series is still going on strong today?

VF 20th

So far all we’ve really got is this snazzy logo. I appreciate VF1-polygon Akira but is this it? Namco will go big on Tekken’s upcoming 20th. Believe that.

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Virtua Fighter’s AKIRA YUKI

You’re looking for some new games to kill some time and you see a game named ‘Virtua Fighter’. You’ve only vaguely heard of Virtua Fighter but you know its a fighting game and decided to give it a go. Plus the guy on the front cover looks suspiciously like Ryu from Street Fighter. So you pop the game in, picking the Ryu-looking fighter. Ryu was always been one of the easier characters in Street Fighter to use so this guy should be a safe bet plus he’s on the cover so he’s gotta be good right?

You don’t really know the controls of this game but when the round started to start hitting some buttons hoping for the best but, very quickly, things are not going your way. At most you can pull-off a weak two-hit punch combination, a slow kick attack maybe and crouching kick and a elbow attack. Why is this character so slow? Your opponent seems to be much faster than you. This character sucks.

–Many’s first experience with Virtua Fighter

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Why DREAMCAST 2 will never happen

Firstly, I’m a old-school Sega fan. I grew up spending many-a-hour on the Sega Megadrive. I then bypassed the Sega Saturn to get to the glorious Sega Dreamcast. I’m saying this because a lot of what I’m going to say about Sega isn’t very nice…but it’s the truth.

Unhappy SonicOne thing I see a lot from Sega fans is for Sega come back into the console market with “Dreamcast 2”. Particular when close to E3. Some people believe that either Microsoft and Nintendo will drop out of the console race; leaving a gap for Sega to exploit. I for one am I’m telling you that this is not going to happen. I’ll go one better and say that Sega returning to the console market would be a terrible decision and that is why that we never happen and here’s why….

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NINTENDO-Only Sonic

Sonic DS

Sonic’s making himself at home on Nintendo’s turf.

The Sonic the Hedgehog franchise has been really quiet as off late. Since 2011’s Sonic Generations; Sega has been uncharacteristically quiet about the next Sonic game that many have been waiting for until now. The newly awaited title is “Sonic Lost World”.

However the bigger news is that Sega have announced a exclusive partnership with old nemesis Nintendo which will have the next three Sonic games exclusive to Nintendo consoles the first of which being Sonic Lost World being a exclusive for the Nintendo Wii U and the Nintendo 3DS. That means no Sonic for Xbox or PlayStation owners for a while. Needlessly to say this has ticked off a lot of people and while I can’t say I’m thrilled I can understand the business logic behind this on Sega’s part and I ask for those fans who are unhappy to try to look at the positives for a second.

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