Sega Announces Possible Shenmue I and II Remaster

"Shenmue III"

The video game industry is one of the most profitable industries of our time. And despite the fact that most major video game companies nowadays don’t seem to understand that all of their success in entirely owed to their fans, there are still plenty of companies that aren’t actively trying to push their source of money away.

In the extremely competitive industry, it’s difficult to actually make something memorable. Most of the ideas supported by our current technology have already been done, and even if they haven’t, they haven’t been done for a reason. It means that they’re just not feasible.

This is why so many people refer to video games that came out in the ‘80s, ‘90s, or ever early ‘00s when they talk about quality gaming. Back then we lived in a time when not many ideas had been done and when developers actually strove for quality products instead of just (correctly) assuming that their fan base would buy their games just because.

One of the most memorable games coming from that time period is still extremely popular; it’s so popular, in fact, that a recent Kickstarter campaign raised the necessary funds to ensure that a third game in the series will be developed for its long-time and new fans alike. I’m talking, of course, about Shenmue.

And since the interest in the game was so recently renewed, Sega announces possible Shenmue I and II remaster. It’s not going to be an easy task, and nothing is certain yet other than the company is very interested in remastering the two classic titles for modern systems.

According to Dan Sheridan, the community manager for SEGA, it’s going to be pretty hard struggle to bring the project to fruition:

Sadly, it’s not as simple as porting the games to the current platforms, as we would need to ensure that any HD remaster lived up to the quality of the original titles. And with games as immersive as Shenmue 1 and 2 there are further complications from licensed products that were included in the original games. That said, we’d love to do it and are currently investigating how to make it a reality.

Aside from porting the very old (by technology’s standards) Shenmue games to the new consoles or to PC, there would also be a lot of legal issues involved. When SEGA developed the first games, they used a lot of licensed products, such as Timex and Coca-Cola. Today, the company could instantly be sued for something like this.

Even if the studio doesn’t go through with actually remastering the first two games in the series, we still have Shenmue III to look forward to. The upcoming game is set to be released in December 2017, but in the meantime you can still play the first two titles in the series on emulators or on the original consoles.

Image source: YouTube