The campaign was started in January of this year by “Team Yu.” It was inspired by an interview with Shenmue creator Yu Suzuki in which he claimed that if he could get the license from Sega, he would be interested in completing the saga (most likely with his development studio, YS Net).
In response, Team Yu set off on a campaign to persuade Sega to give Suzuki the Shenmue license by encouraging fans to tweet the hashtag #GiveYuTheShenmueLicense on the third of every month. The movement has been growing each month and has even attracted the attention of the mainstream gaming press.
Initially I was a bit torn about the campaign, mostly because as an unabashed Sega fan, it was difficult for me to see the company portrayed as an antagonist of sorts. On one hand, I love Shenmue and want to see the series completed. On the other, I can empathize with Sega for not wanting to give up a brand that still potentially holds some value to them, even though they may not have the resources to do anything with it right now.
That said, I still support this movement for three reasons. One, it has an intelligent and sensible goal. Two, it is carried out by true Shenmue fans in a grassroots fashion. And finally, perhaps most importantly, it has raised/reignited awareness and interest of not only the issue regarding the series’ conclusion, but the Shenmue name in general.
So I encourage everyone to tag a tweet or two with #GiveYuTheShenmueLicense on Monday- not just because it’s an important issue for fans, but also because it’s a fun way for those of us captivated by Ryo Hazuki’s unfinished quest to interact and share our love of the series.