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Desc:Shenmue is a classic series and it is a tragedy Yu Suzuki never got to finish his 17-part saga.
Category:Video Games, Horror
Tags:Dreamcast, Sega, shenmue, qte, if you enjoy shenmue unironically you are a bad pe
Submitted:Sexy Duck Cop
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Comment count is 21
oswaldtheluckyrabbit - 2014-04-15
gettin' mad about video games
Sexy Duck Cop - 2014-04-15
I'm not really mad. The last tag got cut off early, but it was supposed to say "If you enjoy Shenmue unironically you are a bad pe teacher," which is true because your attention should be focused on the students.

Nominal - 2014-04-15
What a boring comment.

chumbucket - 2014-04-15
Bootymarch - 2014-04-15
There's nobody that still likes shenmue unironically. You couldn't possibly.

It was the TIIIMMMEESSSS, maaaan
Scrimmjob - 2014-04-15
I really enjoyed Shenmue when it was new. I played through it once, and never touched it again. I guess I still like it, but have no intention of ever playing it again.

Old_Zircon - 2014-04-15
I don't know about Shenmue, but I know what I like.
infinite zest - 2014-04-15
Shenmue was another Japanese game I had to review, going up to Seattle to get it so we could have footage before the US version came out. About a month before, I was up there trying to find some other Dreamcast game, and got thrown in jail during the WTO riots, so that's what most of my review was about. I didn't do shit, just ran into some friends, wrong place, wrong time.. I was given a ham sandwich and gave it to the person next to me, who I later found out was a convicted murderer.

Anyway my review was that of a frustrated teen, convinced that the world would probably end with y2k. I said that Shenmue is the worse than getting thrown in jail, and that I wished I was still in jail instead of playing Shenmue.. something like that. Looking back it did a lot to inspire other games I don't play.
Nominal - 2014-04-15
Press X to not be falsely imprisoned.

Raggamuffin - 2014-04-15
The producers of this game would like to offer a free casket and burial to anyone scared to death by it's contents.

Just keep telling yourself, it's only a QTE! It's only a QTE!
EvilHomer - 2014-04-15
I've never played Shenmue, so two questions. One, is it really as bad as the Hivemind says it is? The Wikipedia article gives it nothing but praise. And two, did it really introduce QTEs as we know them? Because if it did, I don't care how good a game it was, fuck Shenmue.
sosage - 2014-04-15
1) No. It may not have aged well, but it was not bad. It was one of the first 3D open world concepts that bordered on what would later be the "3D sandbox design craze", but was too structured to do what Grand Theft Auto III, which was a year after Shen Mue, wound up doing. You could tackle solving your father's murder at your own pace, while wasting a lot of time just poking around a simulated town and its citizens. It was experimental and charming during a time when Sega was really pushing some forward thinking ideas...but again, I can see how this game did not age well.

2) No. Dragon's Lair is considered the grand daddy of QTE. The QTE in Shen Mue is the result of the lead designer wanting to create a game that was "cinematic", to the point of having film industry people joining the team. The solution they came up with was this.

Straightening my beard...

Riskbreaker - 2014-04-15
Shenmu may have lots of good intentions, but every single idea in the game, good or bad, is poorly implemented.

-There's an "open" world, yes, but there's pretty much NOTHING you can do there, making said "open" world just a pointless gimmick. Around 99% of the NPC will ignore you whenever you tried to talk with them. You would think there would be lots of side-quests to do, but i guess that wouldn't be "realistic" or "cinematic" or whatever Susuki was trying to do. It's a cold statement of how boring a game can be when the best thing about it is that you can play other games inside said game (in this case, emulated versions of Space Harrier and Hang On)

-Because the games is wasting all your time being a "wait for this event to take place" simulator, there is little to no combat situations. Even when the basic combat system is Virtua Fighter translated to another game. Again, any promise the game might had of being "fun" is quickly buried.

-This game killed Yu Suzuki's career. The lesson here is, talented people need producers and other people telling them once in a while "no, that's a stupid idea"

EvilHomer - 2014-04-15
Well, yeah, Dragons Lair and Space Ace etc, those are a given. I mean annoying-ass cinematic QTEs, "QTEs as we know them".

If I wanted to play Simon Says with a movie, I'd fire up Time Gal, not Resident Evil/ Tomb Raider/ FPS whatever. QTEs in games that are not designed specifically to be interactive movies are one of my biggest modern gaming petpeeves, and I'd really like someone to blame.

boner - 2014-04-15
Shenmue is pretty much "The Room" of adventure games.

The "open world" consists mainly of saying 'excuse me' to passersby and having them respond with 'i don't have time to talk right now'.

sosage - 2014-04-15
- Yu Suzuki at least mentions a few cases where finished gameplay elements had to be cut out of the final project (one case everyone knows about is the bike riding in a Saturn version of a prototype of Shen Mue). I think this game is a case of his concept not fitting the scope of what could actually be deliverable, then edited down to a point where, yeah, there could've been a lot more to do.

Like I said, it didn't age well...but it was trying new shit at the same time. Shit that would be done better by others later down the road and become the norm for video games.

- It didn't kill Yu Suzuki's career. He's made 12 games since Shen Mue and at least 9 of those for Sega (and 2 of those Shen Mue related). His last title was in 2012, 10+ years after Shen Mue.

I agree about producers though. Or just someone who can edit ideas so they are complete, coherent thoughts.

infinite zest - 2014-04-15
I've been generally excited for Watchdogs since I first found out about it. Then I found out it's been delayed delayed delayed and is beginning to become the butt of a Duke Nukem Forever joke. Frankly I'm glad it's being delayed, as I could see it becoming something like Shenmue. While I haven't played it, I understand that Metal Gear Solid 5 is undergoing similar scrutiny: fun sandboxy environment, but speedrunners have beaten the game in like 9 minutes, making it the world's most expensive demo.

Back when we all heard about Project Berkley, it was a pretty big deal. The 1980s setting and general plot was also interesting. It had changing weather patterns and seasons, and the graphics were (and still are) pretty great for the platform.

One thing I really liked about it was for all of its heavy Japanese (I know how to ask "where is the bus stop" or "what time is it" and not more in Japanese,) I could figure out what was going on through visuals alone. In that way, it was kind of like the Tractatus 2 for gaming. It gets a lot of shit for its voice acting, but from what I can tell that's the American version, and if you have a problem with that, go find that original American VHS of Akira before they re-dubbed it.

Criticizing the game for its 8-bit minigames being the most fun part (you could also collect little toys from vending machines and trade them like Pokemon) is kind of like criticizing GTA because it's more fun to put in cheat codes, shoot people with RPGs and get chased around by the police than it is to follow the actual story to its conclusion.

I think Shenmue would've been awesome if they had more time to make it that way, like Watchdogs does. But The Dreamcast was more-or-less experiencing its death rattle by the time Shenmue reached the states. It was estimated that everyone in the US who owned a Dreamcast would've had to buy Shenmue twice to turn a profit based on production costs. Watchdogs is lucky because it's in a time where systems, while competing, have many of the same material. Exclusive games like Infamous have that rushed feeling too. It wouldn't surprise me if Halo is eventually ported to PS4 in case Sony dominates the current console wars, but back then it was still like Sega and Nintendo as knights, and PS2 as some looming dragon under the ground.

My biggest problem with Shenmue was the fighting engine. Ostensibly based off Virtua Fighter's, it was just sloppy. Even that little minigame for Tekken 3 had a better beat-em-up mode.

infinite zest - 2014-04-15
Whoops. Missed Riskbreaker's comment. Yeah it was just weird, how bad the fighting actually was. If anything, it ruined any cinematic value the game had going for it: Ducking and kicking over and over is hardly noble, just ask "sweep the leg" Johnny. Getting into a fist fight in GTA games is also pretty useless, but it's not like they built the game up on some sort of hand-to-hand combat system.

Sexy Duck Cop - 2014-04-16
1) Yes, it is that bad. Beyond the above criticisms, the game was full of terrible design decisions that were obviously bad even in 1999. If a store closes at 4:30 game time, there's no "wait" button; you just have to walk around for half an hour until it's 4:30. Combat is limited to a handful of very, very brief encounters, none of which provide any actual challenge. There is no way to fight outside these scripted segments. At one point the game makes you get a job as a forklift operator and stack crates for money the game won't let you spend. The "story" is essentially just a sequence of "Tell me where to find X so X can tell me where to find Y" events. The acting and writing are as bad as any light-gun shooter you'd find at the arcade.

2) Yes, Shenmue imvented modern QTEs.

yogarfield - 2014-06-06

misterbuns - 2014-04-16
jesus christ dudes...
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