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Don’t Preorder Shenmue III – Here’s When You Should Buy It Instead

Last Updated September 23, 2020 1:16 PM
William White
Last Updated September 23, 2020 1:16 PM
  • Shenmue III will launch on Nov. 19. You can preorder it for $59.99.
  • Just 10 days later, it will drop to $34.99 for Black Friday.
  • Why would anyone pay the full $60 with a $25 discount coming so shortly after the release?

Shenmue III is getting closer and closer to coming out after an almost 20-year gap following the 2001 release of Shenmue II. While that’s good news, a new Black Friday ad undercuts this monumental moment for the series with a deep discount.

Shenmue III will launch on Nov. 19, 2019, on PlayStation 4 and PC for the typical new game price of $59.99. Just 10 days later, Best Buy will be selling the PS4 version of the game for $34.99  during its Black Friday sale.

That’s a 42% discount on a brand new game!

Shenmue III
You’ve waited nearly 20 years to play the sequel to Shenmue II. What’s a few more days? | Source: Best Buy 

Shenmue III Will Drop to $35 for Black Friday

With this in mind, it begs the question: “Why should anyone pick up Shenmue III on release?”

There are surely die-hard fans that want to see the story come to a close. It has been two decades since its start, after all. However, even these gamers may hold out for a $25 discount.

The massive Black Friday discount makes one wonder if there aren’t high expectations for Shenmue III to perform well at launch. Maybe preorders aren’t doing as well as publisher Deep Silver was hoping for, but that’s just speculation on my part.

Will a 20-Year Gap Between Games Hurt Shenmue III’s Launch?

Even so, there are a number of factors that could cause Shenmue III not to sell well. The first is that the game series is so old, it may have lost many of its fans. The phrase “strike while the iron is hot” exists for a reason. Waiting for almost 20 years is plenty of time for players to cool down and lose interest in the series.

Let’s also not forget that Shenmue III has been through a fair amount of controversy leading up to its release.

That starts with its deceptive Kickstarter campaign back in 2015 . The game was given a Kickstarter and presented in such a way that it sounded like a crowdfunded endeavor. It blew past its $2 million funding goal, only for Sony to step in shortly afterward and announce it would fund the rest of the game. Basically, the Kickstarter was used to poll interest, rather than as an earnest way to secure funds for the game.

Shenmue III
The Shenmue III Black Friday deal is too good to pass up, even if it means waiting a few days to play the long-awaited title. | Source: Deep Silver 

Epic Games Store Exclusivity May Hamper PC Sales

Shenmue III also landed in hot water earlier this year, but this time it had to do with the PC release. Developer Ys Net signed a deal to make it an Epic Games Store exclusive, and that didn’t go over well with fans.

The game was previously showing Steam logos on trailers, and backer rewards were to include Steam keys. In the end, Epic stepped in to cover the costs of refunds for unhappy Kickstarter backers.

All in all, there really isn’t a reason to buy Shenmue III at launch. The developers have already ticked off the loyal fans, and that $25 discount is just too good to pass up.