In a new update over on Shenmue III‘s Kickstarter page, developer Ys Net confirmed that a trial edition of the game will be launching in “the second half of September” for backers. As the post reads, this will be a standalone section of the first zone in the game that will give players roughly an hour’s worth of content to play through. You’ll be able to repeat said content as much as you’d like and Ys Net even promises that “lots of activities” will be playable. Sadly, save files will not transfer over to the full game, though that isn’t the biggest loss.
The trial will be heading to both PS4 and PC, though the PC version will require the use of the Epic Games Store launcher to play. In fact, backers of the game won’t be given direct access to the demo but will be required to redeem a key through Epic’s website and install it from the service. That might make the demo stick around after the launch of the title, but it’s a little odd to have players jump through hoops just to try out the game two months before launch.
To reiterate, the official description for the demo reads: “The trial version will feature a stand-alone act with objective that takes place in the first area of Shenmue III, Bailu Village. The game will be playable for an estimated 1 hours, and will be replayable after the objective has been cleared. There are lots of activities to experience and we hope you go back for more until the trial expires.”
While I’m happy that the end of this saga is fast approaching its close, I’m still not sure about how this Kickstarter has been handled. I haven’t seen opinion on such a highly requested game turn so sour before launch, but people are just not pleased with how publisher Deep Silver and developer Ys Net have handled Shenmue III. From exclusive preorder content to stupid collector’s editions, there really seems to be no winning here. I just hope the game can satisfy longtime fans because it’s not off to the best of starts.