Development Log #4

Yama

“I want to hear more about you”
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Yama
This looks absolutely out of this world, I look forward to these updates just about as much as anything in gaming at the moment. Amazing work!
 
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Trip Hazard
wire.png


If this wire is here in the Phoenix version I'm gonna be really annoyed lol
 
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Can I be completely honest?
The Dragon Edition looks terrible. Not because you are not good enough, it's the concept behind it that doesn't work. Low-poly assets with PBR shaders is a weird combination that looks odd no matter what.
I strongly believe you should completely ditch the Dragon Edition and focus exclusively on the Phoenix Edition.
Start with the Hazuki residence, remake it from scratch using Quixel MegaScans assets and materials (the recently released scanned assets in Japan that are perfect for this). Some extra assets can be found on the Epic Marketplace for free or extremely cheap. Raid the Medieval Village map, there are some great assets there.
Add a POV GameMode (perhaps with VR) and release that. Then move to Yamanose and so on.
You could use MetaHumans to populate it if you want.
This approach would help to bring talent on board while you are actually giving fans something to play with (although it's not THE Shenmue gameplay, but looking around a familiar environment is still exciting for fans of the saga). This would attract more and more attention and, hopefully, Sega's approval.
I rather have a virtual tour of Shenmue than an unfinished project. Or something that's playable in several years.

Again, I love the passion that you are putting, I just don't think you are using the right approach, spreading yourself too thin on something that's already extremely ambitious.
 
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Another point to my approach: reaching to Suzuki-san with a complete recreation of the environments in UE would make it feasible to add the Shenmue III gameplay into it (perhaps removing extra stuff like the stamina and the eating features).
There is already a Shenmue gameplay made natively in Unreal, no need to redo that unless it's the last resort.
 
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Can I be completely honest?
The Dragon Edition looks terrible. Not because you are not good enough, it's the concept behind it that doesn't work. Low-poly assets with PBR shaders is a weird combination that looks odd no matter what.
I strongly believe you should completely ditch the Dragon Edition and focus exclusively on the Phoenix Edition.
Start with the Hazuki residence, remake it from scratch using Quixel MegaScans assets and materials (the recently released scanned assets in Japan that are perfect for this). Some extra assets can be found on the Epic Marketplace for free or extremely cheap. Raid the Medieval Village map, there are some great assets there.
Add a POV GameMode (perhaps with VR) and release that. Then move to Yamanose and so on.
You could use MetaHumans to populate it if you want.
This approach would help to bring talent on board while you are actually giving fans something to play with (although it's not THE Shenmue gameplay, but looking around a familiar environment is still exciting for fans of the saga). This would attract more and more attention and, hopefully, Sega's approval.
I rather have a virtual tour of Shenmue than an unfinished project. Or something that's playable in several years.

Again, I love the passion that you are putting, I just don't think you are using the right approach, spreading yourself too thin on something that's already extremely ambitious.
I can't disagree more. Not only it doesn't look terrible at all, but it looks wonderful to me. I love the concept of the Dragon edition, and between the two versions it's the one I'm looking forward the most.

Phoenix edition will be really interesting, but the more original assets there are, the most authentic Shenmue it will feel. And thinking I could be able to play it at 240 fps or ultrawidescreen or, eventually, VR makes me drool.

Think about those Minecraft mods with raytracing, combining old assets and its particular aesthetics with modern lighting can be really pleasing and distinctive.
 
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I can't disagree more. Not only it doesn't look terrible at all, but it looks wonderful to me. I love the concept of the Dragon edition, and between the two versions it's the one I'm looking forward the most.

Phoenix edition will be really interesting, but the more original assets there are, the most authentic Shenmue it will feel. And thinking I could be able to play it at 240 fps or ultrawidescreen or, eventually, VR makes me drool.

Think about those Minecraft mods with raytracing, combining old assets and its particular aesthetics with modern lighting can be really pleasing and distinctive.
Not for what I've seen so far, sorry. Minecraft is cubed by design, Shenmue I&II were low-poly by hardware constriction.
In fact, with Shenmue III Suzuki-san went high-poly and took full advantage of all the potential of Unreal Engine.
Minecraft Raytracing also keeps the low-res texture, so you can see how it's not trying to be realistic by any means.

This Dragon Edition is no more than a coat of paint, it looks obsolete now, imagine in a few years. In the Tweeter poll, it was clear that most people prefer to see the Phoenix Edition anyway, so why even bother and dilute the quality?

Have you seen the latest Unreal Engine 5 demo? Then check what kind of assets are available in the Quixel MegaScan library (all for free):
And tell me you don't want to experience a photorealistic Shenmue if you have the chance?
Again, I think the whole reverse engineering is cool, but I feel the whole vision is just slowed down by the Dragon edition, which is a weird in-between.
With UE you can also recreate the basic game mechanics and animation with little effort, see The Simpsons Hit & Run remake: Which is basically what Yu Suzuki did with Shenmue III.
You can still keep all the work done reversing the code when it comes to specific animations, story mechanics, and what not, but you should really think about the bigger picture here.

I'm personally recreating Sega Rally in UE5, but while using the original track design/size and I'm trying to recreate the amazing gameplay, I'm redoing the graphics from scratch. And people are EXTREMELY happy about this, according to the feedback I've been getting on various social media.
I'm not saying that's the only way to do a remake, but I feel like this whole amazing passion and talent is not going anywhere.
I started learning UE5 like 3 months ago, I'm nowhere close to being an expert (although I have over 15 years in VFX, CG, and photography), and I remember checking this project back in February and thinking it was cool... rewatching it now (with everything I learned lately and those demos that came out), I don't see this working.

I'm sure a lot of people will call me a hater, but that's far from the truth. I've been following similar projects very closely, from the Burning Rangers Tribute to the Azel Resurrection project, sharing their work and getting into their vision. And I absolutely love Shenmue since I played it back in 1999 on my Dreamcast. I truly want this project to succeed, that's why I'm giving this honest feedback and constructive criticism. Hopefully, they are more useful than a "this is amazing" one, if you put your egos aside.
 
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On that last note, one about egos... ironically having a hard time digesting a dissident opinion and drooling over feedback around a small project that, comparably, is nowhere near in scope nor size. Yet, I wonder how is it that the pace at which this project is running has anything to do with the perceived artistic direction. Is the project moving too slow? Is it lacking contribution?

The Dragon Edition is a byproduct of the unavoidable research and reverse engineering work done towards a remake in UE, Phoenix Editions is the obvious succession towards some of the goals mentioned but it is by no means the popular demand as suggested, there is no such definitive poll indicating otherwise - quite the contrary if one stops seeing everything as just "another fanboy's opinion".

Improve, innovate? Sure, that all fits the goals of the project afaik, but to get there it takes at least five more Sega Rally(es), and I sure hope this distinction is clear, because it seems to me that the comparison is flawed from the beginning, the only thing they both have in common is the publisher.

That being said, there is some constructive criticism there, although most of it isn't, unfortunately.
 
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You are right, my project is incredibly less ambitious and definitely smaller, that's why I picked it and that's why I'm fairly convinced I can actually pull it out within a reasonable timeframe.
I don't know when the project started nor how many people are involved. I know that creating beautiful levels (like the Hazuki residence) won't take more than a month, so why not start there? So far I've only seen random screenshots all over the place, most of them showing low-res elements mixed with more interesting one, often in the same picture.

The Dragon Edition shouldn't leave your hard disk if it's a byproduct. Or clearly labeled as such. When I post work in progress about my project, they are clear of what they are. I started with highly curated pictures first to show the potential (thanks to UE more than anything), so whenever I have untextured images people know what they are.
I saw a poll on the project's Twitter with a 75% interest towards the Phoenix Edition, so you are clearly wrong:
I didn't compare the scopes of the projects, I just pointed out how a different approach would be beneficial for this one.
This is also the approach the Azel Resurrection project has taken. Sure, Saturn era games are lower in graphics compare to Dreamcast games, but they all look aged regardless.
I'm very aware of the differences between those two games, but I also understand what it means to have achievable goals. For example, I'm focusing on a single stage for a demo, that's why I suggested you to start with the Hazuki residence. Why are you modeling cabinets for the Yu Arcade? This is very confusing.
What's this project aiming for as a minimum viable product? I understand this is a passion project, but you should manage it as a proper one if you want to succeed.

Which of my criticism isn't constructive? I told you to focus on the Phoenix Edition, don't bother to post about the Dragon one (let alone release it), to focus first on a smaller area so you can actually show something playable sooner than later.
Again, this would help attract talents, which is something you need in order to pull this off.
 

spud1897

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Destiny 2, Shenmue HD ;)
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Not for what I've seen so far, sorry. Minecraft is cubed by design, Shenmue I&II were low-poly by hardware constriction.
In fact, with Shenmue III Suzuki-san went high-poly and took full advantage of all the potential of Unreal Engine.
Minecraft Raytracing also keeps the low-res texture, so you can see how it's not trying to be realistic by any means.

This Dragon Edition is no more than a coat of paint, it looks obsolete now, imagine in a few years. In the Tweeter poll, it was clear that most people prefer to see the Phoenix Edition anyway, so why even bother and dilute the quality?

Have you seen the latest Unreal Engine 5 demo? Then check what kind of assets are available in the Quixel MegaScan library (all for free):
And tell me you don't want to experience a photorealistic Shenmue if you have the chance?
Again, I think the whole reverse engineering is cool, but I feel the whole vision is just slowed down by the Dragon edition, which is a weird in-between.
With UE you can also recreate the basic game mechanics and animation with little effort, see The Simpsons Hit & Run remake: Which is basically what Yu Suzuki did with Shenmue III.
You can still keep all the work done reversing the code when it comes to specific animations, story mechanics, and what not, but you should really think about the bigger picture here.

I'm personally recreating Sega Rally in UE5, but while using the original track design/size and I'm trying to recreate the amazing gameplay, I'm redoing the graphics from scratch. And people are EXTREMELY happy about this, according to the feedback I've been getting on various social media.
I'm not saying that's the only way to do a remake, but I feel like this whole amazing passion and talent is not going anywhere.
I started learning UE5 like 3 months ago, I'm nowhere close to being an expert (although I have over 15 years in VFX, CG, and photography), and I remember checking this project back in February and thinking it was cool... rewatching it now (with everything I learned lately and those demos that came out), I don't see this working.

I'm sure a lot of people will call me a hater, but that's far from the truth. I've been following similar projects very closely, from the Burning Rangers Tribute to the Azel Resurrection project, sharing their work and getting into their vision. And I absolutely love Shenmue since I played it back in 1999 on my Dreamcast. I truly want this project to succeed, that's why I'm giving this honest feedback and constructive criticism. Hopefully, they are more useful than a "this is amazing" one, if you put your egos aside.
Firstly I'd like to welcome you to the Dojo. I'm a follower of the Over-Jump project and a huge Sega Rally fan. I'm looking forward to seeing the finished product, though I'll never forgive you for changing from Desert to Forest stage, though I see the reasons why.

I take your points re the photo-realisitc stuff but I'm sure the guys in the project have chosen to keep the aesthetics closer to the Dreamcast originals than more modern. Remember YSNET didn't go photo-real, though I can't recall if the tech was available at the time. S3 is a modern take on the DC art style and if Phoenix looks like that as a base then great. They can easily borrow elements from S3 as needed.

As an aside the Burning Rangers project retains the Saturn artstyle perfectly.

Now it goes into talent.... this project has seen a bunch of media coverage to the point IGN picked it up and I'm pretty sure SEGA know about it. They've got guys working on modelling and assets who came on after this release, 3-4 talented musicians making new tracks and remastering old ones, 3 character artists and more besides.

Also the project lead is an industry veteran who will be well aware of the tasks and challenges of managing a project like this.

I'm sure they would welcome more talent and I'm sure they have done recently.

I think the problem lies in you're basically telling them how to run this project. Now I'm not saying the points aren't valid and all views/opinions are 100% welcomed here but I felt it came across the wrong way, especially the whole ego's thing, that would wind anyone up. They've been open to feedback at each and every juncture (I've banged on and on about some areas being too dark) and I'd be sure they would welcome more.

Keep in mind this project is older than then actual public announcements too by at least a year or so. The workflows etc are set, the art-style is set etc. There is a plan for this.

Drop them a DM on here or via Twitter and chat to them, you've got a clear grasp of VFX from your project and hell you might be able to help each other. They have a discord if you wanted to speak to the team directly as well.

As I say, there's zero hard feelings etc, no one is getting called a hater or anything else. Welcome to the Dojo, I hope to see you more on here and all the best with Over-Jump. Looking forward to seeing the demo you've got planned and how a modern SR looks.
 
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Firstly I'd like to welcome you to the Dojo. I'm a follower of the Over-Jump project and a huge Sega Rally fan. I'm looking forward to seeing the finished product, though I'll never forgive you for changing from Desert to Forest stage, though I see the reasons why.

I take your points re the photo-realisitc stuff but I'm sure the guys in the project have chosen to keep the aesthetics closer to the Dreamcast originals than more modern. Remember YSNET didn't go photo-real, though I can't recall if the tech was available at the time. S3 is a modern take on the DC art style and if Phoenix looks like that as a base then great. They can easily borrow elements from S3 as needed.

As an aside the Burning Rangers project retains the Saturn artstyle perfectly.

Now it goes into talent.... this project has seen a bunch of media coverage to the point IGN picked it up and I'm pretty sure SEGA know about it. They've got guys working on modelling and assets who came on after this release, 3-4 talented musicians making new tracks and remastering old ones, 3 character artists and more besides.

Also the project lead is an industry veteran who will be well aware of the tasks and challenges of managing a project like this.

I'm sure they would welcome more talent and I'm sure they have done recently.

I think the problem lies in you're basically telling them how to run this project. Now I'm not saying the points aren't valid and all views/opinions are 100% welcomed here but I felt it came across the wrong way, especially the whole ego's thing, that would wind anyone up. They've been open to feedback at each and every juncture (I've banged on and on about some areas being too dark) and I'd be sure they would welcome more.

Keep in mind this project is older than then actual public announcements too by at least a year or so. The workflows etc are set, the art-style is set etc. There is a plan for this.

Drop them a DM on here or via Twitter and chat to them, you've got a clear grasp of VFX from your project and hell you might be able to help each other. They have a discord if you wanted to speak to the team directly as well.

As I say, there's zero hard feelings etc, no one is getting called a hater or anything else. Welcome to the Dojo, I hope to see you more on here and all the best with Over-Jump. Looking forward to seeing the demo you've got planned and how a modern SR looks.
Thanks for the welcome! I'm glad you are following my project. Desert is going to happen, trust me! I was already deep into pre-production and I even hired a local photographer in Kenya to capture references and textures for the village at the beginning! It's just delayed because I want to do it properly, so I rather start with Forest for the reasons I listed in my Tweet.

As for the photorealism, Suzuki's team went as much photorealistic as they could with the Dreamcast hardware. And, to be honest, at the time it DID look real! The close-up of Lan Di's eyes is still burned into my brain.
I can guarantee you that you can keep the same aesthetics with high poly models. You can achieve A LOT with lighting and post-process. I mean, look at the real photos of Yokosuka and tell me you can feel the Shenmue atmosphere... you can't go higher poly than reality! ;)
Phoenix, IMHO, has to look like Shenmue III in order to justify its existence. Being able to borrow assets from it is another great point to go in that direction. You can't have a mix of elements with different levels of details (unless they aren't something you can look closely at), that would look wrong.
This whole project should be called Shenmue Kiwami, in my opinion, since it's exactly what you should be doing: remaking the first two graphically to match the third one (or make them look even better).
It should be closer to the original plan for the Shenmue HD remaster, which was scrapped in 2017. They attempted to increase the polygon count and the results were great (for that year's standards, obviously).

Burning Rangers tribute is literally a mod, in fact, it uses the Saturn data to run. I'm in touch with Andreas and he explained to me how he was able to decode the Saturn files to be read by Unity. He didn't change much in terms of shaders, he kept the same flat style. BR wasn't meant to be realistic in the first place, it was more an interactive anime like the intro suggested.
Burning Rangers Tribute is basically Shenmue HD and that's great (I actually missed the original game when it came out so this is very welcome).
To be honest, I'd love to see a full remake of Burning Rangers with today's graphics: imagine rooms lit by flames in real-time thanks to Lumen, filled with smoke made using FluidNinja, and overall a sci-fi realistic environment with co-op online modes... wow!

The closer example, also in terms of size and scope, is the Azel Resurrection project. I've been their first patron when they launched because I loved the art direction behind it. The dragon morphing and the flying demo video are also looking very promising. But I'm also busting their balls via Patreon on whatever I think it's not up to standard or matching PD style.
I understand that it was based on a Saturn game, not a Dreamcast one, but applaud them for starting from scratch and taking some artistic licenses here and there. It's an extremely ambitious project, but knowing what UE5 can do with Nanite (perfect for the rocky environments of Saga), Lumen (imagine the dynamic light changing when you cast a Berserk), World-partition (which would be useful for a Shenmue remake), etc. I can see how it's doable with a relatively small team.

A bunch of press doesn't say much because it's mostly due to the fact that's Shenmue, not because of the project itself. We are standing on the shoulders of giants. I say "we" because this is a harsh reality also for my own project. If I'd made a random rally game, with different car models, do you think I'd be having the following I had now? Definitely not. And Shenmue is fairly more popular than Sega Rally (and for good reasons).
I'm glad there is a team behind this, but I don't really see the results of that, sorry. I would understand if this was done by a single person, but knowing what can be achieved in UE in a relatively small amount of time, I'm far from being impressed.
Back in January, when I first discovered the project and I didn't know how to use UE and its potential, I thought it was good... now, not so much.
I'm sure those musicians are great but do we really need to add to or change Shenmue's music? It feels like another distraction, sorry.
And those character artists couldn't put together some faces made in MetaHuman, resembling NPCs from Shenmue? I hope to be blown away with the next batch of images and I hope I can take back whatever negative I said!

I'm not telling them how to run it, but where they should be headed in order to have a chance to actually pull this off.
I have a background in startups so I know how vital is to create a MVP and iterate upon it, especially to find talents and funding.
I'd rather have a simple Shenmue Photo Mode experience at first (perhaps call it "Yokosuka '86" or "Project Berkley" or something on those lines), where the various areas are rolling out as they are finished, something you can use as a base to redo the whole game later, renaming it Shenmue Kiwami if you get Suzuki-san's approval. This would be a smart approach and something both fans and Sega would appreciate.
It would make for a great demo and I'm positive you could also get an Epic MegaGrant with that, which would help to make the whole full project a reality.
The Virtual Photography community is huge so you can get more attention that way, with content directly made by fans!

I'm sure I didn't come off as friendly, but I rather piss people off than please everyone by sugarcoating my opinions.
I put the ego part because I'm not new to fan projects (I worked on MGS: Philanthropy back in 2006-2009, for example), so I know how some creators are regarding their own projects. If this is not the case, then great! I'm sure all my feedback can be helpful regardless if you actually use them or not. I personally rather read those kinds of comments for my own projects.

And you are also telling me this project has been going on for years? I'm sure the whole reverse engineering has been extremely time-consuming, but if those are the results maybe it's not the right approach and you are better off changing direction a bit now, no? I'm far from being an expert when it comes to coding, so I'm basing my comments on the images that have been released so far.
In a project, especially a passion one, nothing should be "set". That doesn't show flexibility. I'm not telling you to constantly change your mind on everything, but you should be able to adapt based on some new ideas/tools that come your way, to increase your chance of success. Lumen in UE5 allows you to do a day/night cycle, so perhaps do a short video about it?
If you have a plan, you should clearly expose it to your fans. So far I see amazing engineering skills, incredible passion, subpar artistic choices, and no clear goals in mind. This is very frustrating and I hate saying that.

I honestly would like to be involved, if the whole plan makes sense to me. I would be lying if this very project (and Azel R) didn't inspire me to start learning UE and then creating Over Jump. I actually joined this forum back in January to see if I could help with my VFX background. Then, I got busy with other stuff and I just came back... and you know the rest.
I'm sure we can be beneficial to each other's projects, as you mentioned.
I joined their Discord and I'll be sure to get in touch with them properly.
Again, I love the passion behind it and I'd love to re-experience Shenmue with new graphics standards, that's why I've been so direct. If I didn't see the potential, I wouldn't even bother to give feedback, let alone this detailed.

Thanks again for the welcome! Definitely no hard feelings! We are here as fans of the same adventure!
 
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Oh, speaking of high-poly count and Shenmue style:
This was done back in 2015!! The guy was actually hired to work on Shenmue 3 after! It still looks great, but with UE5 and MegaScans' assets, you can make it even more realistic nowadays.
 
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You surely look like you have a lot of ideas. If they somehow fit with the current Dragon&Phoenix project, it will be great that you can contribute your graphics skills and previous experience.

But, honestly, it feels really bizarre to me for someone to make so many strong statements about what a hobbyist project from other people should be, or about what supposed audience it owes something to, or about what will be its measure of success.

Maybe I'm being too zen about this, but if they feel like they want to remake the music, then let them do it. If they prefer to "lose" focus and use some less efficient techniques for the sake of learning or having a good time, then let them do it. It's their hobbyist project, after all. Whatever comes out will be interesting, and I'll be grateful for it.
 
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You surely look like you have a lot of ideas. If they somehow fit with the current Dragon&Phoenix project, it will be great that you can contribute your graphics skills and previous experience.

But, honestly, it feels really bizarre to me for someone to make so many strong statements about what a hobbyist project from other people should be, or about what supposed audience it owes something to, or about what will be its measure of success.

Maybe I'm being too much zen about this, but if they feel like they want to remake the music, then let them do it. If they prefer to "lose" focus and use some less efficient techniques for the sake of learning or having a good time, then let them do it. It's their hobbyist project, after all. Whatever comes out will be interesting, and I'll be grateful for it.
I just gave my straight opinions and ideas, they are free to do whatever they prefer with their time. I don't even care to be credited or anything.
I want this project to succeed therefore I'm very vocal. If they go their way and prove me wrong, good, we can all experience a great product!
If they fail, well, we can't experience that, so it kinda sucks for everyone, no? I hope they learned and they had fun in the process, at least!

Perhaps those ideas could inspire someone else to start their own Shenmue project. Or perhaps I could found my own game studio specialized in Sega remakes in UE! :D

So, yeah, I'd find it more bizarre NOT making those strong statements, to be honest. What's the wrong that could happen? They prove me wrong? What's the best? They implement those ideas and they make a great product? I don't see a downside, really.
 

James Brown

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England
Whilst I respect your feedback and opinions on the project, I just think it came across in such a negative way. The guys have worked for a few years now, tackling aspects of this project, and for you to just stumble in with your first post telling them that they should stop and not release something that they're still passionately working on...whether from your point of view might seem to be coming from a helpful place, it most definitely isn't as someone looking in from the outside myself.

You have no clear understanding of how the project is going, or how far along it is, of course apart from what they have released so far - but they are being quite secretive intentionally, and they're not planning to throw all their eggs in one basket so quickly, as they have already been stung by allowing public access to code and assets etc. Whilst I appreciate them sharing screenshots and videos of their progress, I personally would not want them to continually to work on and then release incomplete areas and locations systematically as they work through the project just to satisfy a few people like you mentioned. You only have to look at how sharing early footage of Shenmue 3 went on to put gamers off the game by the time it was released. Like with Shenmue 4, i'd rather the game be close to finish before really going out of the way to reveal, or show it off. Whilst this isn't the perfect example, i'm using it as a way to emphasise my feelings on just letting the team work, and get there. They don't need to worry about forcing something out, just to please someone like yourself that feels that all of a sudden after 3 months of using Unreal 5 tools, warrants being a game developer with such strong opinions about things.

This team has people that have worked with these tools as their careers even, and i'm sure understand the fundamentals required to make this a success. Completely stopping and changing directions just because you told them to, seems rather left field, and I would assume you are just wasting your breath, as no one that has replied since across these last 2 pages seems to agree with you.

I'm sure that the team will however take a few of your points on board, but I just wanted to at least show my empathy with how they may be feeling after you spouting "contructive critism", when I don't think many share the same feelings on what you are criticising. Dragon mode honestly made my jaw drop and still does when looking at the images again today (that shot of the Genpu Maru...man come on!), and the mix of modern tools with upscaled original textures is genius as it's not replacing something just for the sake of it, it's showcasing and highlighting how fantastic some of the original texture and model work Yu Suzuki and his team managed to pull off over 22 years ago, and how this stuff can still make die hard fans like myself blown away and beyond. This is exactly the concept, Phoenix mode for a complete remaster up to the level of Shenmue 3, and Dragon mode to have that original experience, but with a fresh coat of paint to show respect to the original artstyle and vision.

Poll wise, on the surface 75% sounds like the clear winner, but realistically, you're asking people if they want a remake or the same games again polished...imo, 25% for the latter is huge. 1 in 4 people (based on the images and footage shown so far) have warmed to this modern take on the classics, and I think that proportion shouldn't be told to pack their bags because it's unecessary and you don't want it to be released... :unsure:

Anyways, like Matt said, welcome to the Dojo, and I hope I didn't cause offence either, I just was taken a back a little by your posts so I think i'm warranted to say my opinions on this matter as well. Again, no hard feelings and truth be told, I was blown away by your SEGA Rally remake, it's really coming along great. Hopefully you can get it released and i'm sure Epic will scoop it up too! :smile:
 
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I said to not release the Dragon edition and focus on the Phoenix one, so it's quite different from "stop and not release something".
The whole Phoenix project could still use everything they created so far so it's not like they are tossing away anything.
This project is very ambitious to begin with, so I don't see the point on make it even harder and less focused. I rather just have the Phoenix Edition than not having anything at all (or both with lower quality).

That's right, I have no clear understanding because I'm an outsider, so there's clearly a communication issue here on their part. And this would negatively affect the recruiting, in my opinion. They need an Art Director on board, but I won't be surprised if other potential candidates had the very same concerns I had. Most people are not vocal, often because fans reacting poorly to any form of criticism toward a project (as you can clearly see here).

And my suggestion was to release COMPLETE areas. The game is already split into main areas so it won't be such a tragedy if you can only experience the Hazuki residence and Yamanose at first. The WHOLE saga is split into parts and if Suzuki-san attempted to finish all the parts together we would have never experienced it. Or, imagine, if they insisted on carrying on with the Saturn version and develop it in parallel with the Dreamcast one... yeah, probably we won't be here.
Suzuki-san was smart enough to understand the real deal and restart on Dreamcast hardware.
You could always wait for all the parts to be completed if you hate not having them all in one go.
I mean, this project is clearly for fans of the IP, so everyone knows how the story goes. Shenmue HD makes it available for everyone and it's already highly enjoyable even to these days. And, who knows, people might decide to play the original by looking at pictures posted online! Sega would love that for sure.
But making yet another version of the same game doesn't make financial sense so I won't be surprised if Sega decides to ignore it. It could be seen as a George Lucas-kind of cash grab from people less passionate about the IP.
At that point, they could always turn it into a paid mod for PC users, but you are shrinking your audience more and more.
My suggestions came more from my previous experiences both in working on projects related to video games IPs (MGS: Philanthropy, as well dozens of YouTube videos) and working in the startup world. Oh, also working for over 15 years with mostly indie directors taught me a thing or two about creative projects (movies and games aren't too different in that sense, a lot of my friends/colleagues can attest that).
The way I suggest structuring the release has little to do with game development itself. But knowing that part surely helps, so add also that to my experience. Things I believed were extremely difficult to achieve turned out to be very accessible (thanks to UE and its ecosystem), so if you are not familiar with that you are clearly missing an extremely important POV. I even posted links trying to explain visually what I meant, did you even bother to check them?

I just stated my honest opinion, I didn't ask anyone to stop but rather to consider other options with what they've done so far. It's not like I told them to work on a completely different game or using a completely different game engine, no? Everything they've done so far can be implemented in what I suggested. Focus on the Phoenix Edition and MAYBE, after, do also the Dragon Edition.
No one also seemed to care WHAT I wrote rather than HOW I wrote it. This is the ego part I mentioned, but from fans that get pissed whenever you point a flaw on something they like. I would love to hear opinions on the Photo Mode as an early release (again, to get fundings for the whole thing), for example.

Please stop painting me in such light. Did I insult anyone directly? If the team is so fragile for such articulate criticism wait until they get Steam reviews from people that actually paid money... I politely expressed my honest opinion, based on my experience, and I came up with suggestions on how to improve. No sugarcoating. That's constructive criticism at its finest. Drop those quotes please, because those are quite insulting.
I understand that some people might find the Dragon Edition interesting, it's a personal taste, but to me, it is just a waste of their time. It's a weird in-between a modded Shenmue HD and the real deal, the Phoenix Edition.

The poll tells a lot. Also, people that might prefer the Dragon Edition might be also very interested in the Phoenix Edition, while the opposite might not be true (like in my case).
The right question should be: "If we go ahead just with the Phoenix Edition, would you still be interested in the project at all?" with, of course, actual hi-poly models from MegaScans, to show them what's the real potential here. Probably you'd get close to 90% positive response.

Thanks for your "warm" welcome ;)
To be fair, I'm the first to be blown away by Over Jump, mostly because of how good and easy UE5 is to use rather than my own merits. I still can't believe such quality can be achieved in real-time and with such a little experience! I used to wait hours for renders that weren't even that good. I wasn't even planning to launch the project so early but I couldn't contain myself and I wanted to be an inspiration for other fellow artists on what they could achieve!
That, honestly, it's what frustrates me the most with the D&P project: knowing what it can be (especially with their experience using UE and their amazing dev skills) but not seeing matching results (again, based on what it has shown so far, I hope to be blown away with the next update and eat everything back).
 

Jibby

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Hi. I'm not going to beat around the bush here. Get off your high horse and stop devaluing the work of the team because it doesn't line up with your vision of the project.

One minute you say things like
I'm not telling them how to run it
and
I'm not telling you to constantly change your mind on everything.

and then you come out with posts like:

vfXander said:
The Dragon Edition shouldn't leave your hard disk
vfXander said:
I saw a poll on the project's Twitter with a 75% interest towards the Phoenix Edition, so you are clearly wrong:
(this one to an actual member of the dev team I should add)

vfXander said:
I understand this is a passion project, but you should manage it as a proper one if you want to succeed.
vfXander said:
I told you to focus on the Phoenix Edition, don't bother to post about the Dragon one


I could go on, but I think you get the idea.

Like it or not, they're not looking to make a superficial shell of a game like you keep telling them to. They're out to make what they set out to. Whether or not that's actually achieved that in the long run is completely irrelevant. That's the vision and a fear of failure isn't going to change that.

Take the moral high ground and call it constructive criticism all you like, but all I see is passive aggressive, narcissistic, and patronising nonsense. No project needs a reason to justify its existence.What a stupid thing to say.

Call me fragile if you want. Explain to me how I can't take criticism. I don't really care. You might say that you're 'just keeping it real and saying the hard truth', but in reality the way in which you've gone about making your case is rude, unwarrented, and completely unhelpful despite what you might claim.
 
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Hi. I'm not going to beat around the bush here. Get off your high horse and stop devaluing the work of the team because it doesn't line up with your vision of the project.

One minute you say things like

and


and then you come out with posts like:



(this one to an actual member of the dev team I should add)





I could go on, but I think you get the idea.

Like it or not, they're not looking to make a superficial shell of a game like you keep telling them to. They're out to make what they set out to. Whether or not that's actually achieved that in the long run is completely irrelevant. That's the vision and a fear of failure isn't going to change that.

Take the moral high ground and call it constructive criticism all you like, but all I see is passive aggressive, narcissistic, and patronising nonsense. No project needs a reason to justify its existence.What a stupid thing to say.

Call me fragile if you want. Explain to me how I can't take criticism. I don't really care. You might say that you're 'just keeping it real and saying the hard truth', but in reality the way in which you've gone about making your case is rude, unwarrented, and completely unhelpful despite what you might claim.
Way to miss literally every single point! :)
Yes, MY OWN OPINION is that the Dragon Edition should be ditched, which is not the same as "telling them how to run things". They are free to keep running their project as they please, I'm not forcing nor demanding anything. I'm not a customer, I'm not their boss, I'm stating MY OWN OPINION. Is that so offensive, really?
But even if I told them how to run things, would that be such a big deal if it turned out to be the right move?

Wasn't the majority, according to their own official pool, more interested in the Phoenix Edition? If the guy is part of the dev team should have introduced themself as such. Regardless, he was wrong and maybe he should have followed their own social media account more closely.

No, I don't get the idea. You are clearly trying to discredit and insult my opinions just because you don't agree with them.

I'm telling them to make the Phoenix Edition but WHILE MAKING THAT they could create a demo that's just a Photo Mode. They have to make those locations anyway and they have to include a Photo Mode (like the original and any serious game in the past years), so it's not like they are wasting their time or anything.
Don't want to play the Photo Mode? Don't. But you can't argue that's something that could bring fundings, which are vital for this project, unless they want to spend a decade making it.

Narcissistic, LMAO! :D

"but in reality the way in which you've gone about making your case is rude, unwarrented, and completely unhelpful despite what you might claim."

That's exactly how I see your useless reply :)
If it's helpful or not, they should be the judge.
 
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And, to be honest, the behavior I've seen so far on this forum it's far from being helpful to the project.
Sure, you think you have to defend the honor of it by attacking anyone who even remotely has anything negative to say, but in reality, you are creating a bubble of "Yes Men" that brings no value to it.
Worse, they scare away anyone who might actually have something constructive to say regardless of HOW they say it or if it has any merit or value.

I'd be extremely pissed if this behavior was present around my own project. In fact, some of the best ideas I got so far were from people that didn't agree with my vision and openly told me so.
Hopefully, the heads of the project are smart enough to see and understand this issue.
 
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