Looks like 2018 won't be the Year of Ryo. Shenmue 3's release window's been booted into 2019, which probably won't come as a surprise to anyone. Shenmue 3 is a big project by itself, plus Kickstarted games need to miss their targeted release date at least once. It's an unspoken law, but one that's strictly enforced.
The news about the delay went up quietly on Deep Silver's site earlier today. Deep Silver, which is publishing the game, writes "The extra time will be used to polish the quality of the game even further, to the high standards it deserves and release the product in the best possible timeframe."
One Shenmue 3 delay was announced in June 2017, when we were told to expect the game in the latter half of 2018. However, this is probably an instance where patience will serve Shenmue fans more effectively than fear and rage. Shenmue 3 development updates have been a bit slow to dribble out of Deep Silver, but the game's hardly a dreaded Kickstarter phantom, either. We've seen important development milestones, right? Who can forget learning all about the game's facial expressions via footage of The World's Angriest Grandma?
I have no doubt Shenmue 3 is still happening. Sit tight until 2019, fans. Hey—why not play some Yakuza in the meantime?