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Video: Shenmue postmortem from Yu Suzuki and Mark Cerny

June 16, 2014 | By Staff

"Itís frightening to think we managed this project basically by pushing around sheets of paper."
- Game industry veteran Yu Suzuki recalls creating Shenmue with a huge team working off a giant Excel list of "action items."

Yu Suzuki, the influential Japanese game designer famously known for his work at Sega, took the stage at GDC 2014 to deliver a Classic Game Postmortem talk about his iconic Dreamcast game Shenmue.

Suzuki -- who currently serves as president of his own studio YsNet -- spoke at length for the very first time about the creation of Shenmue, now considered a cult classic nonlinear game. Beginning with the game's humble origin as a Sega Saturn RPG based on Virtua Fighter, he walked the audience through the long journey of the game's development that led to its ultimate release in 1999 on the Sega Dreamcast.

Mark Cerny, game designer and lead system architect for PlayStation 4, was on hand to translate Suzuki's presentation into English for the audience. We've gone ahead and embedded that translated version of Yu Suzuki's "Classic Game Postmortem: Shenmue" above, but you can also watch it here on the GDC Vault.

If you prefer to listen to Suzuki speak in his native Japanese, you can watch an untranslated version of his talk here.

About the GDC Vault

In addition to this presentation, the GDC Vault offers numerous other free videos, audio recordings, and slides from many of the recent Game Developers Conference events, and the service offers even more members-only content for GDC Vault subscribers.

Those who purchased All Access passes to recent events like GDC, GDC Europe, and GDC Next already have full access to GDC Vault, and interested parties can apply for the individual subscription via a GDC Vault subscription page. Group subscriptions are also available: game-related schools and development studios who sign up for GDC Vault Studio Subscriptions can receive access for their entire office or company by contacting staff via the GDC Vault group subscription page. Finally, current subscribers with access issues can contact GDC Vault technical support.

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