Shenmue III - ALL THE FACTS AND INFORMATION (THUS FAR)

(Chapter 7 and beyond)

Shenmue III - ALL THE FACTS AND INFORMATION (THUS FAR)

Postby ShenGCH » Fri May 20, 2016 4:31 am

Hello, everyone. I know we already have the brilliant Shenmue 3 Kickstarter News/Information/Multimedia Archive thread, but I thought it would be a good idea to have a compendium of all the facts, information, and everything we currently know about the game in one easy-to-read contained thread. Perhaps the mods would like to consider this as a sticky?

Please feel free to add everything and anything you can that is relevant (as well as suggestions on how to improve the thread), and I'll update the original post whenever I can :)

(Some of the following information can be considered as spoilers, so read at your own risk.)

---

Story

- Yu Suzuki describes the game as "a kung-fu adventure that takes place in China" [1]

- The game's "key points," according to Yu Suzuki, are "romance, characters' life and martial arts" [4]

- According to Yu Suzuki, Shenmue III will begin from Chapter Six of the story's eleven planned chapters, and will "mark the end of this story," but this isn't the end of the story

- Shenmue III's story begins the day after the conclusion of Shenmue II [9]

- Ryo, while still angry and thirsty for revenge, will grow and mature a lot throughout the game. Those he meets along the way, particularly where martial arts is concerned, will be largely responsible for this [5]

- The meaning behind the "He shall appear from a far eastern land across the sea..." prologue poem, as well as Ryo and Shenhua's roles in the prophecy, will finally be revealed [1]

- Ryo will not return home to Japan in Shenmue III [17]

- The game will explore and highlight the differences between Japanese and Chinese culture, particularly the way in which Ryo behaves in a foreign land having come from a different background, and how he and Shenhua interact with each other [8]

- Confirmed characters (thus far): Ryo Hazuki, Shenhua, Lan Di, Ren, Niao Sun, Chai, and Shenhua's adoptive father, as well as minor characters including Ming Ming and unnamed characters such as an extremely muscular rival to Ryo, the owner of Choubu's Bird Dance Hostel, the temple/shrine maiden of the Hall of Name Tags, an assistant who will play a role similar to that of Fangmei, and a master of Nanquan [6] [9]

- Nozomi, Guizhang, Ine-san, Joy, Fuku-san, Goro, and "other characters" from the two previous games are also confirmed, albeit in the form of telephone calls through the 'World of Telecom' service [6] [9] [16]

- Confirmed fighting styles (thus far) include: Hazuki style jujitsu (Ryo), Fist-Dagger Mantis style (Niao Sun), Nanquan (a master located in Choubu), and Bajiquan (Ryo and various characters throughout the game) [9]

Locations

- Confirmed areas (thus far): Bailu Village, Choubu, and Baisha [6]

- Bailu Village (白鹿村, which translates as 'White Deer') is the starting area of Shenmue III and, where the player was only able to experience just a tiny fraction of the village, was also where Shenmue II ended, though the entire village will now be fully open and explorable. According to Shenhua, who lives in a hut on the very outskirts of the village, Bailu Village is home to around fifty inhabitants. Due to the village's proximity to water, players will be able to fish there. The initial quests here will start Ryo and Shenhua off on their journey

- Choubu (鸟舞, which translates as 'Bird Dance'), a riverside village situated on the banks of the Li River, will be the game's equivalent to Dobuita or Wan Chai, featuring numerous shops, stalls, amusements, hotels, shrines, temples, dwellings, and other buildings. Choubu resembles Kowloon in terms of its density and verticality. Choubu will contain approximately two-hundred NPCs (which is over three times that which was originally planned), one of whom is a master of Nanquan. Choubu has been described as the most Shenmue-esque location in the game [9] [17]

- Baisha (白沙, which translates as 'White Sand') is a village, notable for its numerous tulous, which is home to the Guilin branch of the Chi You Men. Baisha will see a number of new gameplay systems introduced to players, including "a siege game reminiscent of the Warring Kingdoms," which will presumably see the player defending allies from external attacks and engaging in battle with enemies attempting to gain control of the village's buildings, as well as an infiltration mission into the Chi You Men's branch (presumably on a mission to rescue Shenhua's imprisoned adoptive father). It is also during this infiltration mission the player will take advantage of the new 'Character Perspective System', allowing the player to swap between Ryo, Shenhua, and Ren, utilising each character's unique traits and abilities to achieve their goal

- Some of the specific landmarks and establishments that have been revealed are the Lake of the Lantern Bugs, the Temple of the Blooming Flower, the Bird Dance Hostel, and the Hall of Name Tags [13] [30] [31] [32]

Gameplay

- Shenmue III contains around thirty hours of gameplay [3] [9]

- The 'Technique Scroll System', one of the game's confirmed new mechanics, consists of move scrolls comprised of three unique types - Normal, Advanced, and Arcane - the latter two of which are managed by a skill tree-like system, which fills as you learn new moves, and require a certain amount to be accumulated before use [9] [16]

- The 'Character Perspective System', the second of the game's confirmed new mechanics, gives the player the ability to change the character they're playing as - with each character having their own distinct personalities, choices, and approach to the situation at hand - in order to complete their objective. Ryo's approach is that of fighting; Ren's is that of using a weapon; and Shenhua's is non-violent and tactical. This mechanic will feature in a single event [17]

- The 'Rapport System', the third of the game's confirmed new mechanics, will see Ryo and Shenhua's relationship vary depending on the player's actions towards, and interactions with, her, therefore affecting how cooperative and/or warm/cold she is in return, dictated by two underlying systems: the 'Affinity Rating' and 'Cooperative Quest' [17]

- Regarding controls, Yu Suzuki has stated he is currently in two minds about how they will function; on one hand, he would like to "keep a similar configuration to the original game," but realises times have long since changed and is therefore considering more contemporary schemes [10] [12]

- In order to make the combat system simpler and visually different from the series' previous entries, a "Variable Speed" system is being incorporated into FREE battles. Specific details have not been revealed, but Yu Suzuki describes it as "new and fun" [11]

- Ryo will now be able to attack multiple opponents at once (a primitive version of this could be found in the first two games, in which the Ryo was able to grapple an opponent and kick away surrounding enemies) and perform combos in FREE battles [26]

- QTEs will return in a more modernised, dynamic fashion. The possibility of using specific sounds and colours to associate with inputs, as opposed to displaying the button itself on-screen, is under consideration [9]

- There will be events in which a bear and a deer must be saved

- Regarding the size of the game world, Yu Suzuki states it will be "even richer" than the series' previous entries. Choubu, on its own, has been greatly expanded, by at least five times its originally planned size [4]

- A trademark of the series, attention to detail and interactivity (as well as examples of more subtle detail such as gestures and cultural dress style) will be in abundance [9]

- As was the case with the previous games, Ryo will return to his place of rest at 11:30pm. In Bailu Village this will be Shenhua's house, and in Choubu it will be the player's hostel of choice. Baisha's place of rest is currently unknown, though one can assume it will be in one of the tulous

- Regarding loading screens/times, Yu Suzuki has stated that, "[players will] start in a large area which will require some initial loading, but compared to before the loading situation will be much better. It's much faster now," possibly suggesting exterior-to-interior (and vice versa) loading will be seamless [10]

- For the very first time in the series, players will be able to change Ryo's outfit (and maybe even remove his bandage) [17]

- The notebook will return, and has been updated with coloured divider tabs [17] [25]

- Forklifts will return in one form or another [9]

- Capsule toys from the first two games will be returning, though it is currently unknown whether brand new capsule toys from SEGA franchises will be introduced. Those who pledged for the $700 tier of the Kickstarter campaign will have a 2D illustration of their face featured inside a small glass block, whereas those who pledged for the $1200 tier will have a Chibi-style representation of themselves featured as a fully-modelled capsule toy, as part of new in-game capsule toy collections [13] [17]

- Fortune-telling has been confirmed

- Purchasable move scrolls will be returning [23] [24]

- Arcade cabinets will be returning. So far, Excite QTE and Fighting Mania-like cabinets, as well as pinball machines, whack-a-mole, and a punch-ball boxing machine, have been seen [17] [25]

- Lucky Hit will be returning [6]

- A turtle racing mini-game has been confirmed [1]

- A fishing mini-game has been confirmed [9]

- Many of the new mini-games will be more meaningful and connected to the game's world and progression [9] [26]

- Ryo can earn money through various means, including gambling, wood-chopping, and selling items (e.g. capsule toys and fish he has caught) [9] [17]

- Wild animals such as tortoises, ducks, and frogs can be found in certain areas. Chickens, dogs, cats, turtles, hens, pigeons, and "many more" can be found throughout the world, too, and there might even be the opportunity to care for a pet in a similar fashion to the kitten from the first game [2] [9]

General

- The game has a tentative release date of Q3/Q4 2018 for PlayStation 4 and PC [27]

- In order to appeal to veterans of the series, Shenmue III will be comprised of 30% contemporary ideas/influences and 70% 'classic' Shenmue themes [12]

- The game will feature a short recap covering the events of the first two games for those who are new to the series. Flashbacks using scenes from the first two games will also occur throughout the story; Yu Suzuki is even considering making some of them playable, but is currently "undecided [9] [11]

- Memories will play an important part in Shenmue III. One such example is that of an NPC who will recount a prior event, giving Ryo (and, by extension, the player) a more tangible, visual idea of what occurred before working to fit the pieces together [11]

- As of December 2017, almost all of the English voice actors for the main characters have been cast, with the remaining casting to continue in early 2018 [8]

- Yu Suzuki would like to bring back as many of the series' past voice actors as possible. Shenhua (and Wong, if he features in the game) will have a new English voice actress due to Akasha Scholen's retirement [3] [9]

- Corey Marshall and Masaya Matsukaze will reprise their roles as the English and Japanese voices of Ryo Hazuki, respectively [28] [29]

- In a Dreamcast Ultimate interview published on 11/09/2017, Corey Marshall stated he has been in contact with Yu Suzuki's team and his voice work will begin "soon" [15]

- Yu Suzuki would like to include both the English and Japanese dubs in each respective version, but is currently unsure whether it will be possible [17]

- Key members from the series' original development team are working on the game, including writer Masahiro Yoshimoto, character designer Kenji Miyawaki, composer Ryuji Iuchi, and programmer Takeshi Hirai [13]

- Shenmue III is being built in Unreal Engine 4, which the team intend to push to its maximum potential, as opposed to the Virtua Fighter engine utilised by the first two games, due to the engine's ease with prototyping, efficiency, and its appropriate colour palette. As a result, the fighting engine is being built from scratch. Yu Suzuki is especially impressed with how far the capabilities of the engine have exceeded his expectations, particularly where graphical quality is concerned [3] [9] [10] [14] [16]

- Shenmue III utilises motion and magnetic capture technology for its animations, the former of which will be used in the most important action scenes [4]

- Yu Suzuki hopes players will really feel the visuals, from the humidity in the air to the smell of the surroundings, complemented by the game's new art style [9] [14]

- According to Yu Suzuki, "The assets from [the first two games] will get a lot of use"

- As of early September 2017, map modelling and asset creation is at around 70% completion, whereas the lighting system is very close to completion [9] [16]

- Indian game development studio Lakshya Digital (whose past projects include titles such as Uncharted 2: Among Thieves, Bloodborne, Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain, WWE 2K16, and Just Cause 3) will be taking care of much of the game's character art development. Yu Suzuki is very happy with what he has seen so far [13]

- The OST will consist of unused/returning tracks from the original games (of which just 20% were used in the aforementioned) and possibly some new material [3] [9]

- Shenmue III will feature numerous easter eggs [1]

- Yu Suzuki is considering the possibility of a Tomato Mart in the town of Choubu [7]

- DLC is planned, but no further details have been revealed [9]

- Shenmue III will have no online options, though no specifics were given as to the extent to what is considered 'online'

Business-related

- Following its reveal at E3 2015 on June 15th, Shenmue III was successfully funded on Kickstarter, reaching its initial goal of $2 million in a record eight hours and forty-three minutes, eventually ending in July with a total of $6.333 million (the most-funded video game project and sixth-most-funded overall on Kickstarter) pledged by 69,320 backers. As of January 12th, 2018, funding is at $6.847 million (pledged by 75,432 backers) thanks to the Slacker Backer campaign [18] [19]

- Shenmue III will be published in PAL and NA regions by Deep Silver, who will be providing additional budget and promotional support, allowing greater budgetary stability and flexibility, as well as enabling Yu Suzuki to greatly expand upon, and truly realise, his vision and hire more freelancers for the project. (The game's publisher in Japan is currently unknown.) Originally thought to be published by Sony, the latter's role has been clarified as providing support, while SEGA's role is limited to providing the IP and production materials from the series' previous entries [3] [9] [10] [12] [16]

- Contrary to popular belief and misinformation, poor research, and flat-out lies spread by the gaming press, Shibuya Productions is the main investor in Shenmue III, having invested an undisclosed amount in the project, and has a much greater role than Sony. (In fact, SEGA/YSnet/Shibuya Productions formed the agreement to use the Shenmue licence before Sony was ever involved) [20] [21] [22]

---

14/01/2018: Added citations to the majority of the facts. Incomplete, but this will be taken care of

23/12/2017: Updated with new information from Shenmue Master's Gamescom interview

16/12/2017: Updated with new information about the temple maiden and made some miscellaneous changes

28/11/2017: Updated the Slacker Backer amount

14/10/2017: Updated with new information from the Shenmue Master recap

28/09/2017: Updated with new information from the latest M! Games Magazine interview

27/09/2017: Updated with new information from the latest Official PlayStation Magazine interview

25/09/2017: Cleaned things up, updated the backer amount/count, and added more information

21/09/2017: Moved information about locations into their own category and added lots of miscellaneous information

17/09/2017: Included Corey Marshall's comments about voice work beginning soon as well as other little tid-bits

12/09/2017: Cleaned things up a bit and elaborated on some information

11/09/2017: Separated 'Story/gameplay' into separate sections and added some more information from the Fok!, Gamona, and Shenmue500k interviews

09/09/2017: Added some more information from the Eurogamer interview

03/09/2017: Cleaned things up a bit

28/08/2017: Added some more information from the Multiplayer.it interview

27/08/2017: Categorised the information so everything doesn't read as one long list

26/08/2017: Added and corrected some information in light of revelations from Gamescom 2017

20/12/2016: Added some more information, including Shenhua's adoptive father to the confirmed characters list, Nanquan as one of the confirmed fighting styles, and an update to the funding date

[***RESERVED***]
Last edited by ShenGCH on Sat Jan 20, 2018 7:15 am, edited 77 times in total.

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Re: Shenmue III - ALL THE FACTS AND INFORMATION (THUS FAR)

Postby Spaghetti » Fri May 20, 2016 11:14 am

Some important ones:

. Sony's role is limited to marketing and publishing the PS4 version only of Shenmue III (Source: http://www.gameblog.fr/interview_948_shenmue-3-notre-grande-interview-de-yu-suzuki-et-cedric-bisc)

. SEGA's role is limited to providing the IP and production materials from the first games (Source: http://www.gameblog.fr/interview_948_shenmue-3-notre-grande-interview-de-yu-suzuki-et-cedric-bisc)

. SEGA/YSnet/Shibuya Productions formed the agreement to use the Shenmue licence before Sony was ever involved (Source: http://www.gameblog.fr/news/57133-shenmue-iii-pourquoi-la-ps4-et-pas-la-xbox-one-cedric-biscay)

. Shibuya Productions is the main investor in Shenmue III, and has a much greater role than Sony (Source: https://twitter.com/CedricBiscay/status/645483756371873792)

Seeing how the "SONY/SEGA ARE SECRETLY FUNDING SHENMUE" lies are still put out there by the gaming press and the people who religiously take the media's conjecture as fact, I think it's up to us to put these real facts out there.

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Re: Shenmue III - ALL THE FACTS AND INFORMATION (THUS FAR)

Postby ShenGCH » Fri May 20, 2016 11:03 pm

Spaghetti wrote: Some important ones:

. Sony's role is limited to marketing and publishing the PS4 version only of Shenmue III (Source: http://www.gameblog.fr/interview_948_shenmue-3-notre-grande-interview-de-yu-suzuki-et-cedric-bisc)

. SEGA's role is limited to providing the IP and production materials from the first games (Source: http://www.gameblog.fr/interview_948_shenmue-3-notre-grande-interview-de-yu-suzuki-et-cedric-bisc)

. SEGA/YSnet/Shibuya Productions formed the agreement to use the Shenmue licence before Sony was ever involved (Source: http://www.gameblog.fr/news/57133-shenmue-iii-pourquoi-la-ps4-et-pas-la-xbox-one-cedric-biscay)

. Shibuya Productions is the main investor in Shenmue III, and has a much greater role than Sony (Source: https://twitter.com/CedricBiscay/status/645483756371873792)

Seeing how the "SONY/SEGA ARE SECRETLY FUNDING SHENMUE" lies are still put out there by the gaming press and the people who religiously take the media's conjecture as fact, I think it's up to us to put these real facts out there.

Thanks, dude! I'll grab what I can from the links and edit the original post :)

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Re: Shenmue III - ALL THE FACTS AND INFORMATION (THUS FAR)

Postby Spaghetti » Sat May 21, 2016 11:25 pm

Another one for the pile regarding Shenmue III not being Sony's project:

Luke Crane, head of Games at Kickstarter.

Source: http://www.nodontdie.com/luke-crane/ (thanks to the TeamYU forum, where I found this)

I think people felt that if Sony wanted to promote it, they should fund it themselves. This is what I saw floating around the internet.

Right, because that's how that works. That's totally 100 percent how that works. Yup.

There's actually a cyborg that sits at the center of Sony and just churns out all of their work. Just one biological mechanical interface. You feed it and it says, "I will make Shenmue 3 now."

Yu Suzuki's the creator. He talks to his team and he's like, "Yeah, let's do it. Let's do this. What is this Kickstarter thing?" [Koji Igarashi] had just used Kickstarter and the Mighty No. 9 team, obviously, [Keiji Inafune] had used Kickstarter. So, obviously it's in his circles of friends and they're talking about it. They know it exists, and so he's like, "Yeah. Let's do Shenmue 3 Kickstarter." And his team calls Sony and they're like, "Hey, Suzuki-san, like, he's into this." And Sony's like, "Great!" But also, Sony's saying, as a publisher "Does anybody wanna play Shenmue anymore?" And his team goes, "Um, yes."

Right? The team doesn't know. It's not like there's any market research on this or anything.

Well, also, too, among that group of creators you mentioned, I know crowdfunding is not as big in Japan as it is over here.

Right.

There are some, but it's not as popular over here.

Right. We're not live in Japan or anything, yet. For creators, at least. For backers, yes. But not creators.

Yeah. Yeah.

Right. And I can tell you, it's not some shadow project for Sony. It's not like -- the email address is not "cyborg@sony.com."

"redacted@sony.com"

Right. It's not. I mean, honestly, if you look at their project, it looks like it's a small dev team put that project together. It doesn't look like a splashy E3 presentation.

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Re: Shenmue III - ALL THE FACTS AND INFORMATION (THUS FAR)

Postby *Kenshin Himura* » Sun May 22, 2016 2:38 am

Good stuff, glad that all of the current facts about Shenmue III is in front of us. Now all we need is more facts as time progresses,maybe something new at TGS..
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Re: Shenmue III - ALL THE FACTS AND INFORMATION (THUS FAR)

Postby ShenGCH » Mon May 23, 2016 10:50 pm

Spaghetti wrote: Another one for the pile regarding Shenmue III not being Sony's project:

Luke Crane, head of Games at Kickstarter.

Source: http://www.nodontdie.com/luke-crane/ (thanks to the TeamYU forum, where I found this)

I think people felt that if Sony wanted to promote it, they should fund it themselves. This is what I saw floating around the internet.

Right, because that's how that works. That's totally 100 percent how that works. Yup.

There's actually a cyborg that sits at the center of Sony and just churns out all of their work. Just one biological mechanical interface. You feed it and it says, "I will make Shenmue 3 now."

Yu Suzuki's the creator. He talks to his team and he's like, "Yeah, let's do it. Let's do this. What is this Kickstarter thing?" [Koji Igarashi] had just used Kickstarter and the Mighty No. 9 team, obviously, [Keiji Inafune] had used Kickstarter. So, obviously it's in his circles of friends and they're talking about it. They know it exists, and so he's like, "Yeah. Let's do Shenmue 3 Kickstarter." And his team calls Sony and they're like, "Hey, Suzuki-san, like, he's into this." And Sony's like, "Great!" But also, Sony's saying, as a publisher "Does anybody wanna play Shenmue anymore?" And his team goes, "Um, yes."

Right? The team doesn't know. It's not like there's any market research on this or anything.

Well, also, too, among that group of creators you mentioned, I know crowdfunding is not as big in Japan as it is over here.

Right.

There are some, but it's not as popular over here.

Right. We're not live in Japan or anything, yet. For creators, at least. For backers, yes. But not creators.

Yeah. Yeah.

Right. And I can tell you, it's not some shadow project for Sony. It's not like -- the email address is not "cyborg@sony.com."

"redacted@sony.com"

Right. It's not. I mean, honestly, if you look at their project, it looks like it's a small dev team put that project together. It doesn't look like a splashy E3 presentation.

:lol:

I love this dude's wit and brutal honesty.
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Re: Shenmue III - ALL THE FACTS AND INFORMATION (THUS FAR)

Postby ShenGCH » Sat Aug 26, 2017 8:19 am

*Updated the original post with information learned from Gamescom*

If there's anything else to be added, please feel free to share the information :)
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Re: Shenmue III - ALL THE FACTS AND INFORMATION (THUS FAR)

Postby ShenSun » Sun Aug 27, 2017 1:36 am

Thanks for this guys. Much appreciated

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Re: Shenmue III - ALL THE FACTS AND INFORMATION (THUS FAR)

Postby ShenGCH » Sun Aug 27, 2017 6:45 am

ShenSun wrote: Thanks for this guys. Much appreciated

No worries :)
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Re: Shenmue III - ALL THE FACTS AND INFORMATION (THUS FAR)

Postby shredingskin » Sun Aug 27, 2017 8:39 pm

Where did we got all the info about Niao Sun being confirmed and her martial arts style ?
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Re: Shenmue III - ALL THE FACTS AND INFORMATION (THUS FAR)

Postby Yokosuka » Sun Aug 27, 2017 9:13 pm

shredingskin wrote: Where did we got all the info about Niao Sun being confirmed and her martial arts style ?


Yu's interview from Hobby Consolas (2015 July).
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Re: Shenmue III - ALL THE FACTS AND INFORMATION (THUS FAR)

Postby Telekill » Sun Aug 27, 2017 10:11 pm

I'm not sure I understand that dislike towards Sony's involvement. The way I see it, we wouldn't be getting Shenmue 3 without Sony giving that stage time to Suzuki at E3 and giving him and Shenmue a much louder voice and brighter spotlight.

So is the dislike towards Sony being involved?
Is the dislike towards the misinformation being spread by the ignorant?
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Re: Shenmue III - ALL THE FACTS AND INFORMATION (THUS FAR)

Postby ShenGCH » Sat Sep 09, 2017 8:12 am

Updates since my last post:

09/09/2017: Added some more information from the Eurogamer interview

03/09/2017: Cleaned things up a bit

28/08/2017: Added some more information from the Multiplayer.it interview
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Re: Shenmue III - ALL THE FACTS AND INFORMATION (THUS FAR)

Postby ShenGCH » Mon Sep 11, 2017 4:49 am

Updates since my last post:

11/09/2017: Separated 'Story/gameplay' into separate sections and added some more information from the Fok!, Gamona, and Shenmue500k interviews
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Re: Shenmue III - ALL THE FACTS AND INFORMATION (THUS FAR)

Postby ShenGCH » Sun Sep 17, 2017 7:40 am

Updates since my last post:

17/09/2017: Included Corey Marshall's comments about voice work beginning soon as well as other little tid-bits

12/09/2017: Cleaned things up a bit and elaborated on some information
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