Refunds promised to “Shenmue III” backers after Epic Games exclusivity backlash

Last month, publisher Deep Silver and developer Ys Net confirmed that Shenmue III is going to be exclusive to the Epic Games Store on Windows PC.

That surprise announcement decision disappointed many Shenmue fans, particularly the backers of the original Kickstarter campaign. Not only did the Epic Game Store not exist back when Shenmue III was crowdfunded in 2015, but many PC gamers have criticized Epic’s exclusivity deals citing data security concerns, not wanting to split their gaming library, as well as Epic lacking many features found on other storefronts (including user reviews). Plus, they were promised fulfillment on Steam for years, and hundreds of Shenmue III backers demanded refunds for their PC copies.

After weeks of deliberating options, the Shenmue III team has indeed decided to give these backers options if they do not want an Epic Games Store download key.

In short, backers who requested a PC version of Shenmue III can opt to swap for a PS4 copy, request a refund for their Epic PC copy, or wait an extra year for a Steam copy (presumably after the Epic exclusivity deal expires). One rub is that backers who supported tiers which included in-game rewards (i.e. having your likeness added to the game) will not be eligible for a full refund, but a partial refund is still possible.

Here’s the text from the latest Shenmue III Kickstarter update:

If selecting either the PC Physical or PC Digital version, an option to also receive a Steam key one year later will be available. Backers must manually select this option in the survey to receive the Steam key.

**If you had previously selected PC and want to change to PS4 or vice versa, you may do so….

Along with Deep Silver and Epic Games, we have agreed that should the above proposal not be acceptable to backers, refund requests will be honored.

Details concerning the refund request process will be announced in a following update. We ask for your patience until that time.

*In the case rewards within your reward tier, such as in-game content, have already been created and implemented, a full refund may not be possible.

This move is certainly welcome, but it’s unfortunate that the long-awaited Shenmue III was tarnished in the minds of some of its dedicated fan base. Are you one of the disappointed PC backers? Does this news adequately address your concerns? Let us know in the comments!


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