Sega of Europe has offered a few clarifications for the upcoming HD remaster collection Shenmue I & II. As previously mentioned, the game will be presented in 16:9, the cut scenes themselves are limited to their original 4:3 aspect ratio. Sega has now confirmed the game can also be played entirely in 4:3, just as it appeared on the Dreamcast and original Xbox.
Much like the cut scenes, the frame rate is fixed to 30 frames per second due to "the engine, game code and scripts...hard coded assumptions" Though specific examples were not provided, both Shenmue games were among the first to feature a real time day and night cycle. Non playable characters would appear only at certain times and could be seen acting out specific work and commute routines based around the day of the week.
New to Shenmue 1 is the ability to fast travel from the protagonist Ryo's home and nearby areas. In the original release, players were often forced to journey back to their active mission at the beginning of each day. This too will be an optional feature.
As previously detailed, the HD collection will include both the Japanese and English voice track, an updated user interface, new custom controls for consoles and PC, achievements, and the option to save anywhere. For the first time in North America, saves can be transferred from the first game to the next. Additional visual enhancements and bloom effects can also be turned off.
Shenmue was original released on the ill-fated Sega Dreamcast in 1999 and the Xbox in 2002 in North America. Costing an estimated $80 million to produce, both games failed to meet sales expectations. Though a passionate fan base encouraged creator Yu Suzuki to crowdfund a third entry in 2015, bringing in a record breaking $6 million on KickStarter.
Shenmue tells the story of Ryo Hazuki, a teenage martial artist on a journey to avenge his father's murder.
Shenmue I & II will launch on the PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC on August 21st.