You see, Shenmue is about a man named Ryo who's trying to track down his father's murderer. Eventually you piece together enough clues to learn that the killer is connected to a local gang that's infamous for harassing dock workers. So of course the logical next step is for you, the player, to get an in-game job driving forklifts. You know, to attract the attention of the gangsters so you can try to get clues from them. It's a good plan that works perfectly, but it takes five tedious days of depressing manual labor to get there.
First you get training from a man who looks like a racist caricature from the 1960s.
"Have you ever noticed how black people look like this, but black video game characters look like this?"
And that's it. You're trained, so get to work. And make no mistake, this isn't some two-minute mini-game. This is an actual goddamn job. Bask in the excitement of the morning shift and the spectacular evening shift. Did you notice that the videos are each 20 minutes long? You've got to work two shifts a day for five days, which means you'll be spending over three hours picking up boxes and driving them around.
It's not like they couldn't have found a way to make this fun. Every day starts with a wildly irresponsible forklift race, and your lunch breaks are mostly spent beating up gangsters. That's a job we want in a video game. All they had to do was skip past the actual labor and get back to the action. But no -- the developers decided that, in the name of realism, you would have to spend three precious hours away from your real-life job ... working a job. You can't skip it. You can't shorten it. You can't phone in sick or tell the boss that your grandma died because her car got hit with a blue shell. Hell, we're surprised they don't make you fill out paperwork and attend a virtual workplace sensitivity seminar.