Shenmue 3, if and when it ever actually gets here, will not tell the full and complete story of martial arts vengeancemeister/gainfully employed forklift driver Ryo Hazuki. In fact, series creator Yu Suzuki said in an interview with USgamer that it won't even give us half.
When asked if Shenmue 3 will conclude Ryo's tale, Suzuki put his water bottle on the table and pointed to a spot midway along its length. "Whole story of this bottle, about here," he said through a translator. Not quite halfway, though: "40 percent," he clarified.
He also acknowledged that he had doubts when the project first began as to whether the developers would be able to pull off a full-scale Shenmue game. The 2015 Kickstarter was tremendously successful, pulling in more than triple its $2 million goal, but Suzuki told Destructoid in 2011 that the original Shenmue, which came out in 1999, cost $47 million to make. Suzuki said while the Kickstarter campaign was running that it would require $10 million to "truly have the features of an open world," and with assistance from Sony and Deep Silver he said that the studio has managed to achieve its goals.
"To be honest, at the very beginning of the project, we thought that we may not be able to do a full Shenmue," he said. "But now I can say I'm confident it's a full Shenmue. This is Shenmue."
Ys Net is also apparently working on post-release content for the game: Suzuki said it will be "something quest-based, and something action-based," but didn't offer any estimate as to how much further along it will move Ryo's quest for revenge. Maybe it'll get us to 50 percent.