I was going to start this article when Shenmue III was announced at E3 Game show back in 2015…
Then I realised it’s actually been a life long journey for many of us Sega and Shenmue fans. All building up to that one moment in time especially those who are part of generation Z. We grow up as kids in the 90’s we experienced gaming in it’s infancy but also in it’s revolution the arcade/ console scene was buzzing like no-other era before it. A true golden age of entertainment.
We took it for granted..
We grow up…
But we never forgot…
How special these moments in time was for us as kids…
We took one of those moments in our life and we brought something back.
When I look back at the arcade / console scene I remember what profound effect those games had on me in the 90’s which influenced, shaped, not only my childhood but many of us.
Which made growing up back then so magical and memorable; playing arcade games like ‘After Burner’ ‘Out Run’ and ‘Hang On’ ‘F355 Challenge’ ‘Daytona USA’ Space Harrier’ for me personally how I remember it on Hastings Pier Arcades as a child with my dad.
I do have some regrets… I wish I could of captured those moments in time, on Hastings Pier I once remembered gone… I only have a faint memories how it was back then.
I will be attending Magic Monaco event on 24th February I realised that one person who made all those moments in my childhood so memorable was Yu Suzuki.
He made those moments mean something to all of us which we can all bond and connect with as kids in the 90’s and many years later as adults but also something we can look back on and say: “You know what we had one of the most amazing and awesome unforgettable times of our lives.” That I can look back on fondly on those times, they are moments in my life and times I will never forget…”
Now here I am as adult with my son… Now I am taking him to the Pier to Play Lets Go Jungle so he can shoot up some spiders.
We can all credit one man for those happy times playing games such as ‘Super Hang ON’ back on my Mega Drive II or meeting up with some friends to race each other on Daytona USA or going all out on Virtua Fighter and Virtua COP.
Most importantly we will never forget how Shenmue entered our lives…
We all have our own story where it began…
For me it began with Dreamcast Magazine and Demo Disc and little white but awesome console known as the Dreamcast.
I remember replaying Shenmue trailer FMV sequence over and over in amazement that something so revolutionary was coming… Looking back and making sense of it now I never new how interconnected my life would be with Shenmue and the Sega Dreamcast system and being massive Sega fan.
Over the last few years taking me on one exciting campaign to the next, only reason any of that could happen because just like my story we all have our own story where it began for us as Sega and Shenmue and Dreamcast fans.
We never forgot but we all saw something worth bringing back.
So when we look back at Shenmue why it mattered to us when you really think about it; It’s because Shenmue is also part of us to a degree I would like to think. We lost or maybe missed something that was once part of our lives, we wanted to hold on too experience that connection or feeling we took for granted.
Shenmue is not just a game from our passed it helped us in many ways and taught us how to treat one another through kindness, respect , to keep our curfews, to honour one’s convictions to do what is right and to keep those you love close to you.
I can’t remember what year it was exactly must been around 2012 I was at a point in my life where I hit rock bottom my hearing was getting worse – felt my future was always on knife edge suffering depression, isolation, anxiety, shutting myself off from my friends just always feeling like some black void inside of me, I hated feeling that way.
I felt the need to play Shenmue again…. I would like to think that many would agree that playing Shenmue to us is more than just game, it has meaning, a message maybe many, hope… That people can pick you up and that you can keep on going it connects to us on spiritual level that can heal soul itself might sound kind cheesy it’s truth I stand by that.
After I completed Shenmue II: I decided right they’re and then I knew what I want to do with my life I am going campaign like never before until we got Shenmue III we did that through Shenmue500K and many other Shenmue fan partners.
When Shenmue III announcement happen I think for many of us it was a celebration of old times nostalgic over-load of what we once had lost brought back. A celebration of our youth and being young also it was new chance to heal. Not only that most of my generation never had something to look back to pull us together collectively. All we had was our games we played, Shenmue was a game that did something special we are forever grateful helping us along our own journey in life.
That is the thing about Shenmue and the Dreamcast and also Sega and Yu Suzuki they made those games they brought us together.
We showed that back 2015 E3 Game Show announcement celebrating Shenmue III. I will never forget staying up all night waiting for the final reveal of the last game only to be filled with chills as I heard the music and the leafs tumbling down the screen and then the count down only to finally reveal that Shenmue 3 was being Kick-started.
Then to find out our website was linked up in the background during this time. I’ll be honest with you I went nuts… All the efforts over the years campaigning had paid off. It was as if a bomb went off.
Lets never forget that we all had our own personal journey where it started and where it mattered the most and that we can all be thankful for Yu Suzuki for making our dreams and childhood so memorable.