Last night, Crunchyroll announced via their Virtual Crunchyroll Expo that an anime based on the beloved SEGA franchise, Shenmue has been greenlit. Now, it is my honor as the resident Shenmue super-fan to bring this news to you, our readers…
The details thus far are that this will be a 13-episode series, and will be animated by studio Telecom Animation Film. Whereas, the series director will be Chikara Sakurai. In addition, the anime will also be a joint collaboration with Crunchyroll and Adult Swim in terms of licensing for airing and/ or streaming rights. However, what is currently unknown is what part of the story the anime will cover; if this will simply retell first two games or continue the story following the events of Shenmue III is to be determined. For those that cleared Shenmue III, the gameplay clearly shows that the story is far from over and there was much more to tell. By judging from the teaser image it is safe to say Lan Di and Shenhua will appear in the series. With this, it possibly makes the anime’s timeline for the story to take place during or after the events of Shenmue II. I come to this assumption due to Shenhua’s physical appearance at the very end of part 2, and her being a major character in the third game. Yet, only time will tell with the events of this adaptation.
For those unaware Telecom Animation Film is a subsidiary of TMS Entertainment, which has worked on anime like Lupin the Third Part 5 and Tower of God. Also, it should be noted that TMS (Tokyo Movie Shinsha) has a prior working relationship with SEGA since the 1990’s, as they have worked with SEGA to create the animation for games like Sonic Jam and Burning Rangers. Then as for Chikara Sakurai, he is most recently known for having directed One Punch Man season 2. Whereas, series creator Yu Suzuki will serve as the anime’s executive producer. So, the production of this anime series has quite the pedigree going for it. Nevertheless, readers stay tuned to Hero-Club for more details on Shenmue the Animation!