Stuff That Sucks - Shenmue 3 and Kickstarter practices

Shenmue 3 has hit its Kickstarter goal and is aiming for stretch goals, but is this the start of a troubling trend? Greg Burke looks into this in this week's Stuff That Sucks.


Of all the big surprises at E3 2015, one of the biggest of which was the return of Shenmue! But as creator Yu Suzuki came out onto the PlayStation stage, he quickly announced that Shenmue 3 was not yet under development. In fact, he was there to announce a Kickstarter campaign.

It was an odd move, but a seemingly effective one, as Shenmue hits its $2 million goal overnight. Then came the stretch goals, including one promising open world support at $10 million raised and... wait... shouldn't Sony or another publisher be stepping in right about now?

The Shenmue 3 Kickstarter is leaving some bad tastes in people's mouths and for potentially good reason. This could be the start of an unhealthy precedent, one that Greg Burke goes into with this week's Stuff That Sucks.

Shack Staff stories are a collective effort with multiple staff members contributing. Many of our lists often involve entires from several editors, and our weekly Shack Chat is something we all contribute to as a group. 

From The Chatty
  • reply
    June 29, 2015 4:00 PM

    Shack Staff posted a new article, Stuff That Sucks - Shenmue 3 and Kickstarter practices

    • reply
      June 29, 2015 4:03 PM

      Why the banner image of Sleeping Dogs?

    • reply
      June 29, 2015 5:13 PM

      Awesome video big respect to Shacknews and Greg for running it and having the guts to tell it how it is.

      I 100% agree with you it felt totally wrong and did not sit right with me at all I did not back it. Don't get me wrong I was a fan of Shenmue back in the day I was happy to see it announced but not the way it went down. Open world games is old news now and there are amazing open world games they have their work cut out for them just look at the open world games at E3 and out now your not just driving a fork lift and playing a bunch of mini games :)

      I backed Bloodstained and felt real bad about it for it was similar situation but not as bad as what went down with Shenmue 3.

      Everyone knows Sony could fund Shenmue 3 easily almost all gamers from DC, XB1, PS2 era all wanted Shenmue 3 it was a no brainier, there was no need to use KS and present it how it was @ E3.

      Another part that bothers me is how many good indie games with real gameplay videos could of been funded with all that money? That is the part that sucks I have supported so many awesome indie games on KS that did not get funded and only wanted thousands of dollars not 10 million.

      Anyways nice video glad you guys have the guts to talk about I was tired of so many awesome E3 games like Doom 4, Uncharted 4, Tomb Raider and others that got shit on by some gamers complaining about this and that yet the majority did not seem to complain about what went down with Shenmue 3.

      Shit remember when Fallout 4 vids first came out and Doom 4 some people actually said it looks like shit or just like Doom 3 and Fallout 3? Yet Shenmue 3 that is nothing at this point makes millions in 9 hours on a little vid that is nothing, it just makes no sense?

      We shall see what happens hey it better be amazing with Sony backing it and KS, funny thing is I doubt it will be any where as good as Sleeping Dogs, I am going to call it now.

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      June 30, 2015 6:06 AM

      Was it tacky? Yes. Should Sony announce a Kickstarter to a fan favorite game during E3? No.
      Did it leave a bad taste (in my mouth at least) Yes.

      All this being said, I thought long and hard as "why" Sony would have done such a thing and I can only come up with the phrase "being gun-shy"
      I recall a story told by Ken Levine about System Shock 3. Before him and his team created Bioshock, Ken went to his publisher and asked if they could finish their trilogy of System Shock. He explained how the "fans' loved it and there was nothing like the "reveal" of the SHODAN in SS2 and so on and so forth. His publisher agreed BUT also told him that being talked about did not equate to sales and they where not certain that a new SS would do well in the market.

      TO prove him wrong Ken and his buddies started posting and talking about System Shock 2 all over the web to generate hype and it worked. They showed the findings/data back to the publishers and although the data suggested that the fans where ready...instead what was decided was why not create something new....the rest is history.

      Sony, must be feeling gun-shy. They know there are fans that love Shenmue, but invest in a game to not see returns, especially and old game going back more than a decade? That could potentially end some careers. This way, they test the waters and it was a success.

      In my mind, Sony will fund the game proper and entirely. I feel the 2 million dollars is probably marketing budget. Or salaries for the team.
      This was a test to see if the waters are warm and inviting or cold and forgettable.

      What they should have done at E3 was make that distinction apparent rather than appearing like they were pitching a commercial.

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        June 30, 2015 6:14 AM

        I haven't paid much attention to this since Shenmue was never my thing, but I could swear I've heard from a few places that Sony is only spending money on marketing for this, not development.

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