With Shenmue III in development and the “ease” of modern day digital distribution, you would think that remasters of the first two Shenmue games would just be common sense for SEGA, am I right?

Sorry, but that is a deft and solid “no.” During the latest episode of SEGA Centra, Community Manager Dan Sheridan spoke out about potential remakes for the first time in a while, stating that while SEGA wants to do it, it’s not as simple.

“Sadly, it’s not as simple as porting the games to current platforms as we will need to ensure that any HD remaster lives up to the quality of the original titles. And with games as immersive as Shenmue 1 and 2, there are further complications from licensed products that were included in the original games. That said, we’d love to do it and are currently investigating how to make it a reality.”

Man, I didn’t even think of licensing issues. Those middle “turn of the century” gaming years, when legal issues were the last of gaming’s problems, are really coming back to bite us in the butt. Good job, foresight!

But what would you like to see from a remaster of Shenmue? I’m not really sure there is anything I would like to change beyond the screen resolution and maybe a few tweaks for the sake of convenience. When it comes to graphics and voice acting, Shenmue is a game that comes from a very specific time and place, and having it look or sound like anything else would seem fake.

Or, at least, keep those old designs around as options. Again, this is all just a huge “if” for now. Stay tuned.