Who exactly is funding Shenmue 3? It's a question that over a week after the game's reveal we still don't know the answer to.
And while Shenmue 3 is fully funded, the rate of funding it is receiving on Kickstarter has slowed considerably. Is there a trust problem? Is Sony helping to fund development? How much of a cut, if any, is Sega receiving?
There have been many questions concerning Shenmue 3's budget and what outside sources will be added to the money collected through Kickstarter. I apologise for not having been more forthright in this area and would like to take this opportunity to help clarify the situation,” Suzuki has now said.
Ys Net and I have been putting in many long years trying to find a way to bring back a sequel that so many fans have waited so long for. After learning of Kickstarter, I knew it would be possible to get Shenmue 3 started. Wanting to make the best game possible, I also knew that I would have to look to more traditional means to obtain all the funds that would be needed to create the game I had envisioned.
Sony and Shibuya Productions have been wonderful partners because they believe in Shenmue and want to see the best for the fans and the game. Their investment in (and support of) Shenmue has helped to realize a sequel that will stand proud with its predecessors. While it is not business practice to discuss the specific details of such arrangements, I can say that with their assistance on the production and marketing end, and in Sony's case with some publishing support as well, Ys Net is able to use more of the money we collect through Kickstarter purely for Shenmue 3's development.
It is also important to note that your funds are going strictly to Ys Net for development of Shenmue 3 – Sony and Shibuya Productions are not seeing a cent of your Kickstarter dollars.”
Suzuki also addressed previous comments suggesting that $10m is the amount the game needs to crowdfund to reach its full potential.
Of course, like with any Kickstarter, additional funding will only help us make a better game,” he added. At the $5m mark, there will be an all new gameplay feature I would be excited to be able to add to the Shenmue legacy. If we should make the $10m stretch goal, a much larger, completely open world will be yours to explore.
Even if these Stretch Goals are not reached, Shenmue 3 will already be a sequel true to its name, and one we can all be proud of. It is my hope though, that together we can make this Shenmue just as revolutionary as the first two were.
I understand this statement may by late in coming. Going forward, we wish to be as open as possible concerning the game's development.”