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Shenmue and Shenmue 2 re-releases coming this August

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Ryo Hazuki is back

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Shenmue 1 & 2, a bundle containing modern ports of the first two Shenmue games, will be released Aug. 21 on PlayStation 4, Windows PC and Xbox One.

The re-release will cost $29.99. Pre-orders are now available on Steam and the Xbox Store, but not the U.S. PlayStation Store. Sega previously announced that it is also releasing physical copies of Shenmue 1 & 2 on PS4 and Xbox One.

Shenmue 1 & 2 is part of an impressive lineup of PC ports on the way from Sega. During E3 2018 last month, the company announced that it is bringing Yakuza 0, Yakuza Kiwami and Valkyria Chronicles 4 to Steam. Yakuza 0 will arrive on PC just a few weeks before Shenmue 1 & 2, on Aug. 1.

In Sega’s announcement of Shenmue 1 & 2 back in April, it sounded like the PC version of the package would be the way to go, offering “fully scalable screen resolution” and “PC graphics options.” Features in all versions include modern and classic control schemes, Japanese and English voice-overs, and an updated interface.

The original Shenmue debuted in 1999 on the Dreamcast, and Sega followed it up with a sequel, Shenmue 2, in 2001 on the Dreamcast and original Xbox. Series creator Yu Suzuki is now working on a new entry in the franchise, Shenmue 3, for which he raised more than $6.3 million on Kickstarter in 2015. At that time, developer Ys Net planned to release the game by the end of 2017; it has since been delayed multiple times and is now scheduled to launch in 2019. For more on Shenmue 1 & 2, check out the new trailer above.

Update: Sega has published an FAQ on the Shenmue website with additional details.

The ports are being handled by British studio d3t, and Sega described the porting process as a “herculean effort.” The re-release of Shenmue 2 will be based on the Xbox version, not the Dreamcast version, because of “technical reasons” and because it offered additional features including texture mipmaps for improved antialiasing, a snapshot system and filters. Sega noted that the graphical differences between the Dreamcast and Xbox versions will also be present in the new port.

Here’s the full list of new features in the ports:

• Choice of Japanese or English speech in both games
• Saves can be carried over from Shenmue into Shenmue II on all platforms
• Saving anywhere in both games
• HD resolution rendering
• Updated UI
• New post processing effects for both games
• Full controller support and configurable mouse and keyboard for PC users
• Full Achievement support for both games on all platforms

Sega clarified what “modern controls” means here: Players will be able to move Ryo Hazuki using an analog stick instead of a D-pad. The company also said that the ports will be capped at a frame rate of 30 frames per second because “throughout the engine, game code and scripts there are hard coded assumptions about a fixed 30Hz frame update rate.” On the visual front, d3t has expanded gameplay to a 16:9 aspect ratio, but cutscenes are still in their original letterboxed 4:3 format. Finally, Sega noted that all the in-game arcade games will be playable in the re-releases.

You can check out a dozen screenshots of Shenmue 1 & 2 in the gallery below.