GBAtemp Exclusive GBAtemp Recommends #105: Yakuza

Discussion in 'GBAtemp & Scene News' started by chavosaur, Sep 15, 2016.

  1. chavosaur

    chavosaur Austin Trujillo

    Mar 11, 2012
    United States
    Huntersville, NC
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    Welcome to the 105th issue of the GBAtemp Recommends Revival Project! This project is a revival of our once-weekly feature where we share our favorite games and applications with you. The titles we recommend may be "old school" games, a piece of Homebrew, an ROM hack, sleeper hits, an application, etc, but one thing's for certain, we think they are fantastic and deserve your attention!

    On today's entry, we're going to take a look at one of my all time favorite over-dramatic japanese brawler series. Get ready to defend your honor and your family, This is:

    Released in 2006, Yakuza tells the tale of Kazuma Kiryu, a Yakzua clan member sent to jail for a crime he didn't commit.

    Yakuza takes place in Kamurocho, an open world recreation of an actual city known as Kabukicho. Set 10 years after his imprisonment the story focuses on the changes that have taken place to the syndicate he once knew. Deceit, thievery, and broken honor are all that remain in the world of the Yakuza, and after someone steals 10 billion yen from the Tojo clan, Kazuma takes it upon himself to uncover the thief and bring some respect back to the name of the Yakuza.

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    Along the way he begins to uncover darker and darker mysteries, including the targeting of a young girl named Haruka who is more important to him than he could ever imagine, and determines he must protect her at all costs.

    A blend of action adventure with RPG elements and a fun brawler combat system are what make the game shine as far as gameplay goes. Take the fun of a fighting game such as tekken and make it the combat system for the whole game. Button combos lead to fighting combos that can be stringed together for flashy takedowns and eliminations. You can also pull things from the environment such as chairs or pipes and use them to gain the upper hand in fights. Fights will give you experience to learn new combos as well as buff stats to increase stamina or gain spirit faster to perform flashier finishes.

    Take the openworld fun of GTA and set it in Japan and you basically have Yakuza's entire environment. You can travel all over the city to find various shops, side missions and random street fights to occupy your time as you progress through the story. There's a variety of minigames to take part in as well including gambling, crane games, and more.

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    But where Yakuza truly shines is in its writing. I like to compare the game to Shenmue in that it's incredibly over-dramatic, but engagingly so. The story is told so well that it's hard to want to put the game down. It's like a Japanese soap opera with over the top action in terms of story. It pulls at your emotions, your humor, and your sense of pride and honor. It deals with light-hearted moments and incredibly dark moments as well. Suicide, molestation, murder, and other awful elements plague the universe of Yakuza, and you must guide Kazuma through it all one step at a time.
    It's an aged PS2 game, but a fantastic one that is absolutely worth playing. Gameplay may feel clunkier now than how it felt back in the day, but that shouldn't stop you from enjoying its cinematic thrill.

    Genre: Action Adventure RPG
    Release Year: 2006
    Developer: Sega
    Published by: Sega
    Released For: PlayStation 2, Playstation 3 (HD re-release, JP Only,) Playstation 4 (HD re-release, JP Only,) Wii U (HD re-release, JP Only.)

    If you enjoyed this week's edition of GBAtemp Recommends! Please leave a comment in the thread. This helps us monitor feedback and ensures we keep posting these articles in the future.

    If you would like to see the original archive of our previous entries, you can look at our archived content here.

    And keep an eye our for future Yakuza titles! Yakuza 5 was free last month on PSN, and Yakuza 0 will be coming out on PS4 early next year!
    cvskid and Chary like this.
  2. Sonic Angel Knight

    Sonic Angel Knight GBAtemp Legend

    May 27, 2016
    United States
    New York
    Oh look, is some characters that is in project x zone 2. Is the only reason why i know this game sadly. Reminds me of... shenmue, oh wait also in project x zone 2.... well is there any streets of rage characters that would be so sick... oh wait that project x zone 2... Ummm well then. What, i did say is the only reason why i know this game. :ninja:
    mwahaha likes this.
  3. Mushkin

    Mushkin GBAtemp Regular

    Mar 11, 2007
    Portugal, Porto
    kick-ass game, trully fantastic!!!1
    chavosaur likes this.
  4. cvskid

    cvskid GBAtemp Addict

    Apr 13, 2014
    United States
    Always been on the fence about this series for some reason but being a shenmue fan i should give this series a try sometime.
  5. shadow910512

    shadow910512 Member

    Aug 24, 2016
    one of the best yet underrated games on the PS2, the start of a great series
  6. Issac

    Issac I

    GBAtemp Patron
    Issac is a Patron of GBAtemp and is helping us stay independent!

    Our Patreon
    Apr 10, 2004
    Too bad the remakes are exclusive to Japan, even though the translation has already been done.