It’s been one of the most demanded yet seemingly troubled projects in recent gaming history, but since its surprise unveiling at E3 on Monday Shenmue 3 has become the fastest videogame to raise $1million in pledges on a crowdfunding platform.
The much-anticipated instalment in the landmark RPG series took just 1 hour 44 minutes to reach the milestone on Kickstarter, smashing the previous record of 5 hours 55 minutes set by Yooka-Laylee last month.
It also becomes the second fastest Kickstarter project overall, sitting behind the Pebble Watch smartwatch, which took only 49 minutes to raise $1 million in February 2015.
Shenmue 3’s initial goal was to raise $2 million, but it bulldozed that seemingly modest target in just 8 hours 43 minutes, leaving the best part of 31 days to raise even more funds.
The first Shenmue released exclusively for the Sega Dreamcast in 1999 set a new benchmark in open-world, multi-genre gameplay.
Players took control of Ryo Hazuki, a troubled 18-year-old keen to avenge the mysterious death of his father. It mixed action, role-playing, life simulation and adventure.
An equally revered and ambitious sequel Shenmue II was released in 2001 for the Dreamcast, and later the Xbox.
Although Shenmue 3 had always been mooted, it faced continual development problems and was reportedly cancelled multiple times, with many fans of the series giving up hope of third game ever materialising.
However its shock comeback, which was unveiled as part of Sony’s E3 press conference, has been confirmed for the PS4 and PC, with a tentative release date of December 2017.
* This article was amended on June 24, 2015. The original article included inaccurate Kickstarter data and stated that the previous record holder for was Fastest videogame to raise $1million in pledges on a crowdfunding platform was Torment: Tides of Numenera.