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d21lewis said:
Here's the thing, though. Shenmue had its fans back then (myself included) but by being released on a dying system, it couldn't sell as well as some would have liked.

The sequel wasn't even released in America until the original Xbox--another low selling system. I couldn't even get my hands on it until I got an Xbox 360 (backwards compatiblity). By '07, it was already dated.

They're trying to sell a game in 2019 that wasn't a huge success in the first place and then alienated people who liked the first because the sequel was exclusive to hardware that didn't sell all that well. And, from the sound of things, the game hasn't really evolved much in 20 years.

It's good that we have a Shenmue 3. I personally don't think I'll ever be playing it. I wonder if there's even a future for this franchise after this one.

I recall the estimate for Shenmue was that they banked on it so much to sell units that at the time of release every DC owner would have had to buy the game twice for it to cover its costs.

Unless the game radically has changed from the original I don't see much of a future unless dedicated fans continue to crowd fund them but then the whole Epic fiasco may have hurt that prospect. The original game was like an introduction to the concept of open world games that was new back in the time of the DC but in today's industry we're in an open world golden era and have the likes of GOW, BOTW, HZD, GTAV, RDR2, Nier:A, XBC, Astral Chain, DQXI, MHW etc... The series is facing strong competition in this area to the point where even having the best story in history won't do it any favours in standing out.