Posted By: wraggster
Yu Suzuki surprised and delighted a rapt audience during yesterday’s Shenmue postmortem.
Surprising precisely no-one, the first audience question asked at Yu Suzuki’s captivating and revealing Shenmue postmortem was about Shenmue III. Suzuki held the same line he’s held since the request was first made: “I sure want to make it. Of course I want to make it. If I get the right opportunity…”Suzuki isn’t working on any other projects, he confirmed, but he did reveal an incredible amount about the creation of Shenmue, which began as a surprising and obscure prototype called ‘The Old Man and the Peach Tree’ before spiralling into a proposed eleven-chapter saga with restrictive Coke product-placement and AI-driven interior design.Drawn from Suzuki’s dissatisfaction with the Japanese RPGs of the 1990s — he wished to fix things as simple as walk loops that don’t end when a character walks into a wall — The Old Man and the Peach Tree was an (unshown) prototype featuring full 3D graphics and cinematic presentation telling the story of a man, Taro, on the quest to find a great martial arts master Ryu, potentially masquerading as a lazy beggar who requests a peach to eat.Further inspired by a research trip to China, Suzuki evolved this concept into a plot with four acts and four concepts: Introduction, sadness. Development: departure. Denoument: fight. Conclusion: starting afresh. It’s here that you can begin to see what Shenmue would become, with the first act of what had become Virtua Fighter RPG: Akira’s Story following the theme of sadness with Akira losing his father, the “development” following the theme of departure with Akira leaving for China.