Mafia Wars Is Partially Responsible For The New ShenmueS

If you're still rooting for Sega's ambitious Shenmue series, you may, someday, have Mafia Wars and Farmville maker Zynga to thank.

Yu Suzuki, creative force behind games like Outrun, Space Harrier, Virtua Fighter and Shenmue, tells Famitsu in a new interview that he was in part inspired to create social game Shenmue City after playing the multiplayer browser game Mafia Wars. Suzuki says he wanted to return to the world of Shenmue, but have the ability to create something without the monumental investment a proper Shenmue game would require, according to Andriasang's translation.

Suzuki and Sega had previously attempted to turn the series into an MMO with Shenmue Online, a game that was announced in 2004, but has never been released.

Shenmue fans may eventually get the third promised entry in the epic role-playing game series. Suzuki hopes that if Shenmue City is a success, Shenmue 3 could happen. "I want to make [Shenmue III] with the same volume as in the past," he says. "I wanted to carry out my obligations for the series."

Yu Suzuki Hopes Shenmue City Leads to Future Developments For Series [Andriasang]