Shenmue
Ryo and Ling Shenhua in artwork for Shenmue 2.Sega

Game developer Yu Suzuki has given his first interview following the success of Shenmue 3's announcement during Sony's E3 press conference and the subsequent $6.3m ($4m)-generating Kickstarter campaign.

Speaking to GamesTM in its latest issue (#164), Suzuki spoke of his surprise at the success of the game and his dissatisfaction with lead character Ryo's face at this early stage of development.

"It was completely unexpected and a big surprise. I become acutely aware of how the fans felt towards Shenmue having waited in anticipation these 14 years," said Suzuki. "We are currently in the early development stage, but I am not satisfied with the look of Ryo's face. Improvements will be made as we go along."

Clearly a man of few words, Suzuki also confirmed a few other aspects of the ongoing development, including that music and artwork from previous games will be used in the threequel, that arcades will return if the budget allows it and that "a few" people who worked on the original two games will return.

He also, when asked about the series' combat system – which was based on Virtua Fighter, another Suzuki series – the legendary developer said: "I would like to see the battle system evolve towards one that matches the world of Shenmue."

Towards the end of the article, the 57-year-old developer was also asked about the game's story and whether Ryo's journey of revenge following the death of his father will continue along the original trajectory. "The initial storyline contains 11 chapters. I thought about condensing the story in three, but I thought that would necessitate cutting too much story, so I decided not to go that route. Many fans really want to see the whole story."

The full feature includes interviews with Cedric Biscay of Shibuya Productions, the company working with Suzuki and his team on marketing and promotion, and James Hamill a "leading voice" in ongoing mission from fans to get a sequel made. It can be read in the latest issue of GamesTM, out today.

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