Looks like we won’t be able to play Shenmue III in 2018, perhaps not surprisingly. Today publisher Deep Silver and developer Ys Net made an announcement to confirm that the expected 2018 release window is no more.
Deep Silver mentioned that the game will get further polish to the “high standards it deserves” and a better release timeframe.
“Deep Silver today announced that their upcoming release Shenmue III has been moved and will now release in 2019.
The extra time will be used to polish the quality of the game even further, to the high standards it deserves and release the product in the best possible timeframe. ”
Yu Suzuki himself followed up with a comment, expressing his apologies and promising to use the tame to improve the quality of the game further.
“To all of our backers, we are very sorry for the delay. After much discussion with our partners, Deep Silver, we have concluded that extending the release will allow us to deliver Shenmue III at its best. We promise to use this time to improve the quality of Shenmue III.
We cannot thank you enough for your enduring support.”
This is the second time the game is delayed, after the first slip announced in June 2018, almost exactly a year ago.
To be fair, the tidbit about the “best possible timeframe” for release may also be telling. This year we’re getting Shenmue I & II from Sega, and it would make little sense for a small developer like Ys Net to launch the third chapter of the series before the younger generations have a chance to check out the first two.
Shenmue III is due to release for PS4 and PC. Incidentally, for the sake of full disclosure, the author of this article is one of the original Kickstarter backers of the game.