Unreleased Shenmue II US Dreamcast Prototype

Joined
Jul 31, 2018
I just happen to read news on an unreleased Shenmue II US DC version has been released.

So this just confirms that Microsoft convinced Sega US not to release the game in the US but Sega Europe still released Shenmue II in Europe.

Aside from different graphics and a few game bugs. The US version is essentially the same as the Europe version.

Have not played DC in years but hopefully I will game DC next year.

Opss. Posted in the wrong thread. Mods, please move this thread to Shenmue II forum. Thanks!
 

24Nathan

Joined: Fri Apr 09, 2004 11:13 pm
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Jul 27, 2018
Location
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Always interesting to talk about series sales. Here's what little data I have gathered throughout the years:

Shenmue I in Japan: ~410,652
Shenmue I in US: ~458,977

With those sales totaling 869,629 sales, and many sources saying Shenmue I sold about 1.2 million, that leaves Europe with ~330,371 sales. This is all as of March 2nd, 2003.

This also cites Shenmue II selling 126, 483 copies in Japan as of that date...

Source: https://web.archive.org/web/20050228083737/http://www5e.biglobe.ne.jp/~hokora/english/dcchart.html

U.S. Shenmue apparently sold 2,817 copies as of August 31st, 2001: https://www.neogaf.com/threads/dori...reamcast-software-ltd-11-1998-q3-2001.368000/

According to X - One Magazine in the UK, they estimate that Shenmue IIx sold about 320,000 copies. Unknown if this is worldwide or just in the PAL regions:

Shenmue IIx Sales.jpg


This site cites Shenmue IIx in North America as selling 26,683 in the three days it was released in October: http://web.archive.org/web/20030628171856/http://g-rev.com/Special/Shenmue/News/News2002.html

And the same site also says that Shenmue IIx PAL charted #1, presumably during release month: http://web.archive.org/web/20030628172208/http://g-rev.com/Special/Shenmue/News/News2003.html

I've also found a pretty interesting interview regarding SEGA's outlook on Shenmue II on Dreamcast in the USA:
Charles Bellfield is talking with IGNDC, and basically says that retailers and sales data from other big Dreamcast titles didn't fill them with confidence that Shenmue II would do well, and that they wanted it to be in a position where it would continue after the Dreamcast died. We all know what happened next, but I can't really fault them. It was a risk, but sadly just didn't pay off.
 
Joined
Aug 11, 2018
As @RyoHazuki84 mentioned, in Japanese her name is written as 莎花 - シェンファ (Shen-Fa).

If anything, I would actually guess that "Sha Hua" might be a more accurately 'Chinese' pronunciation. Although, I kind of hate to say that, because in that case 莎木 - シェンムー (Shen-mu) becomes 'Sha Mu.'

(Series about Sea World Orcas, confirmed!)
I'm pretty late, but here's a dump of information related to this in an extremely unorganized manner:
  • 莎花 in Hanyu Pinyin (the standard way to romanize Chinese text in the PRC) is literally "shahua". It was probably translated to "Sha Hua" before they realized "Geez, that sounds stupid and is hard to pronounce to non-Chinese speakers!" and changed it to Shenhua.
    • 花 is pronounced faa1 (in Jyutping) in Cantonese and a few other smaller topolects/dialects.
  • When I did a search for the meaning of the name of Shenmue, I found that it's supposed to mean "spirit tree" which gives us really only one real candidate: 神木 (spirit/god/deity + "tree" or shenmu). No idea why it's 莎 (sha) instead of 神 (shen).
    • In Chinese, 木 ("tree") can mean tree, but is generally used to mean "wood" instead. However, in Japan, 木(き)generally means "tree".
  • Searching for "Shenmue name" in Chinese returns this Zhihu (think Yahoo Answers but China) question: https://www.zhihu.com/question/39153314. The OP suggests that Chinese people think "Shenmue" is a Japanese word, while Japanese people think it's a Chinese word. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
 

spud1897

Administrator
Joined
Jul 24, 2018
Location
England
Favourite title
Shenmue II
Currently playing
Destiny 2, Shenmue HD ;)
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spud19870
Joined
Nov 24, 2021
There are other places that cannot be visited normally.

I turned the game over in every direction for 4 months :)

I even tried to create bugs, exploits bugs hi hi hi

For example, the cave at the end is fully explorable by regularly adjusting the STEPS
 

spud1897

Administrator
Joined
Jul 24, 2018
Location
England
Favourite title
Shenmue II
Currently playing
Destiny 2, Shenmue HD ;)
PSN
spud19870
There are other places that cannot be visited normally.

I turned the game over in every direction for 4 months :)

I even tried to create bugs, exploits bugs hi hi hi

For example, the cave at the end is fully explorable by regularly adjusting the STEPS
Great work. I know there's a loading screen in there for Miao Village but I think it just gets stuck there IIRC.
 

Peter

Administrator
Joined
Jul 14, 2018
Yep, the game tries to pull the data for the area but will just black screen because it's just not there. Or at least I think it isn't. The loading screen ID's are not on any of the area lists, so I don't have a clue how @LanDC found them back in the day. Also, with the amount of combinations there are (over 1.5 million area ID's alone), you would never get 1 disc done never mind x4 discs. Could be more loading screens in there but it's not really worth the effort to find out I guess.
 
Joined
Aug 21, 2018
Anybody try this with a GDEMU? I tried starting it but it says UNSUPPORTED DISC/ EMPTY FOLDER on the GDEMU menu.
 
Joined
Aug 21, 2018
I just checked with this build of II and you CAN'T use American Shenmue I saves with this build.

Edit: I can't believe I actually forgot to add the 't in can't. I'm sorry for the mistake
Also can another person confirm if you can't transfer your US Shenmue 1 save to this version of Shenmue 2?
 
Joined
Aug 25, 2018
I just happen to read news on an unreleased Shenmue II US DC version has been released.

So this just confirms that Microsoft convinced Sega US not to release the game in the US but Sega Europe still released Shenmue II in Europe.

I don't see how it does that. The existence of a US build of Shenmue 2 DC doesn't confirm anything about Microsoft's involvement.

According to Comby Laurent at https://en.sega-dreamcast-info-game...eleased-us-shenmue2-dreamcast-prototype-debug:

"Contrary to popular belief, Shenmue 2 has not been canceled in the United States because of the Xbox version, Microsoft did not "buy" its exclusivity on American soil. Sega of America had simply felt that it was too late to take him out on this territory."

If you read news articles from the time, Sega of America are quite amibiguous about the reason. At no point is it ever said that Microsoft bought exclusive rights. Reading between the lines, Sega of America decided not to burn the money.

 

24Nathan

Joined: Fri Apr 09, 2004 11:13 pm
Joined
Jul 27, 2018
Location
US
The first article kind of discusses details of Microsoft's support for Shenmue II:

"Microsoft will be picking up the title as a first-part sold and distributed title; it will still be sold under the Sega brand. But Microsoft will be funding the marketing program for Shenmue 2. We expect and we know under the terms of this relationship that Microsoft will put a marketing program behind it that a game like Shenmue 2 and a developer like Yu Suzuki will expect to get from such a great franchise. You will see some really compelling marketing programs from them under the Sega brand for Shenmue 2 next year. "

"Our concern at the moment, the forecast that we got back from retailers for Shenmue 2 on Dreamcast wasn't big enough to make this title popular for us; it wasn't covering our cost by miles! And Sega can't afford to continue to go down the path in coveting games that makes us unprofitable. By working with Microsoft, we have a great partner that's going to put in a lot of expertise in development and a great marketing program to make this title successful by using the Xbox technology to improve the quality of the game. I"

"Specifically when you look at the sale premium priced games today at $39 or $49 dollars, they are not selling to the extent that would necessarily need to make Shenmue 2 comfortable on the Dreamcast. We need to have a strategy that takes Shenmue beyond the Dreamcast platform. That is critically important for the cost we put behind Shenmue 2 already. So we need to look at a platform strategy for Shenmue after the Dreamcast existence."

Those are quotes from Charles Bellfield, Vice President Of Strategic Planning And Corporate Affairs for SEGA Of America at the time. I can't seem to find an archived link of the interview on IGN, but I do have a .pdf I found somewhere that I will attach below.

It makes business sense that if SEGA felt that Shenmue II on Dreamcast in North America wouldn't sell well, that they would take Microsoft's offer to not only offset the money already spent, but also to hopefully make it a viable space for future games to thrive, since a SEGA console would ultimately be an impossibility looking forward. It is quite obvious that Microsoft bought exclusivity in North America in exchange for some marketing and development help for IIx. Why would they pay for that only to compete with sales of the game on a dying console, eating into their share?
 

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  • The Dreamcast Reality_ Q&A With Chares Bellfield.pdf
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Joined
Aug 25, 2018
You will see some really compelling marketing programs from them under the Sega brand for Shenmue 2 next year.
I don't think we ever did, did we? Unless they count this? I mean, they fixed it for the actual release, but did nobody want to tell the artist that Ryo is not Latino before they ran off these promo posters?


s-l1600.jpg
 
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Joined
Aug 25, 2018
Oh jeez. I didn't even notice that. As if those mock-movie-credit-block things weren't cheesy enough.
 
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