Wednesday, August 21, 2019

Analysis: New Shenmue III Screenshots From Gamescom 2019

Three new still shots of Shenmue 3 have been released, showing off more of the game's detailed environments.

Screenshot 1: Evening Dining in Bailu Village

The first screenshot is a night scene of customers seated at an outdoor table. In the background an elderly man (perhaps the proprietor) is seated at a table laden with sausages, cake and other food items. The customers are turned in his direction - they seem to be getting hungry.
Screenshot #1
The heavy wooden beam and hanging rope in the foreground can be recognized as being the Bailu village well, as seen in this capture from E3 B-roll footage earlier this year:
The Bailu village well

Screenshot 2: Harbor-front Stalls in Niaowu After Rain

The second screenshot shows stalls set up at the Niaowu harborside, with an array of goods displayed in fine detail. The ground is wet after recent rainfall.

The closest stall, which sells antiques, has a range of items including Buddhist statues, dragons and a large round bronze engraving. Beyond it is a stall selling vases and other pottery.
Screeshot #2
 This is a portion of the stands that we have seen at a distance in a screenshot that Yu Suzuki shared at April's Reboot Develop conference:
Stands at the Niaowu waterfront (April Reboot Develop conference)
Looking again at the detail in the image, one item that caught my attention is a calligraphy wall hanging at the back of the antiques stand. The characters written on it reveal it to be the first line of the Taoist text Tao Te Ching: 道可道非常道. It is a phrase that can be found in the first two games, being written on one of the hanging scrolls at the Hazuki Dojo in Shenmue I, and again in Shenmue II at the Guang Martial Arts School in Wan Chai.

When Ryo examines the scroll in the first games, the English translation given is "Principles cannot be expressed only by words".
Shenmue III retains links back to the first two games.

Screenshot 3: Li River at Night

The third screenshot is of cormorant fisherman on their bamboo rafts on the Li River in Niaowu. The birds can be seen perched on the rafts, waiting to dive down and snatch up fish attracted by the flaming braziers.
Screenshot #3
This may be an updated version of a similar scene that we analyzed as part of last year's The Prophecy trailer:
Screen capture from last year's The Prophecy trailer.
Interestingly, the fishing birds are now wholly black, rather than having white heads as in the earlier trailer.
Before... and After
That completes our look at the three new screenshots, with a thorough comb-through of the new trailer "A Day in Shenmue" still to come.

Source: Koch Media on Twitter
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  1. Interesting spots dude :) Thanks!

    1. Thanks SkillJim! Can't wait to play when we can experience it for ourselves.