In a rather disappointing (but perhaps not altogether unexpected) turn of events for fans of the Shenmue adventure series, Sega itself has confirmed that it had nothing to do with the Shenmue III trademark application filed earlier this week with the European Office of Harmonization for the Internal Market (OHIM) covering "computer game programs," "computer game software," and "video game discs and cartridges."
In fact, the company outright called the application a fake, and will be investigating how exactly it occured in the first place. The false trademark has since been removed from the OHIM.
The last official Shenmue release on console was the sequel, localized in English for the Xbox back in 2002. Celebrated Sega game designer (and the man behind Shenmue) Yu Suzuki himself originally intended the series to consist of some 16 chapters, with the first two games covering five and a manga spinoff containing another. The final chapters were originally planned to be included in a third title, but as of now the series remains "on hold" following the poor sales and high production costs incurred from the first two games.