follow us:

Latest News

Tusk returns to Killer Instinct
The barbarian from Killer Instinct 2, Tusk will make his return to the franchise in Killer Instinct Season 3. ... [read more]
New Nintendo Direct shows Star Fox Zero in action
The latest Nintendo Direct had info about some up Nintendo's upcoming games, but let's face it, the start of the show was Star Fox Zero. ... [read more]
Capcom punishes rage quitters and will look for more
On Feb. 26, Capcom's Neidel "Haunts" Crisan revealed that rage quitter's were going to get punished, but he didn't give specifics. In his latest blog, he revealed the fate of those who can't take the loss. ... [read more]

Latest Articles

PAX South 2016: Umbrella Corps Preview
Compared to last year, PAX South 2016 was lacking major developers. This would explain why I was excited to see Capcom in attendance. I don’t play Resident Evil games, but something about the previews I had seen compelled me to stand in line to play Umbrella Corps.... [read more]
Your safe space doesn't belong in my competitive game
Whether it’s trash talking or teabagging, some people are looking for a nicer online experience. Guess what? We’re not in elementary school anymore. This is digital dodgeball and players like me are aiming for your head. ... [read more]
Smite Preview: Hey look at me, I'm playing a MOBA on my console
There's no doubt that the top two MOBA games are DotA 2 and League of Legends, and with the control layout for those games, it's unlikely we'll see those games make the jump to the consoles. However, Smite, the third-person perspective MOBA game and arguably the third most p... [read more]

Latest Reviews

Firewatch Review: Prepare for an interesting sensation
Firewatch is the first game developed by San Francisco-based company, Campo Santo. Needless to say, for this to be their first game it was certainly on fire. ... [read more]
Pony Island Review: Not that innocent of a game
I saw the trailer for Pony Island and thought to myself “Well, this looks like a fun puzzle game at least and it’s a pretty funny title”. I gave it a shot and I wasn’t disappointed.... [read more]
Undertale Review: An 8-bit RPG with a twist
Toby Fox first made himself known to the public with his ROM hack, “Press the B Button, Stupid!” for an Earthbound Halloween Pack back in 2008. With the help of artist Temmie Chang, he created a game that will take you back in time with its 8-bit look, music and turn-bas... [read more]

Latest Videos

PAX South 2016: Lords of New York Interview
If you never thought you wanted a poker RPG, then you haven't played Lords of New York from Lunchtime Studios. ... [read more]
PAX South 2016: Moving Hazard Interview
Moving Hazard is a new take on the zombie action game. The multiplayer shooter makes the zombies the weapon to take out the other team. ... [read more]
PAX South 2016: Eternal Interview
Dire Wolf Digital is jumping into the card game genre with Eternal. Unlike other card games, Eternal lets players make decisions both on offense and defense. ... [read more]
Yakuza Review
Posted on October 18, 2008 by Oscar Gonzalez

During the Dreamcast era, there was one game that showed how far videogames have come. It had high production values that gave it a budget of over $70 million. The game was Shenmue and was an utter failure for Sega although it gained a following of fans that considered it the best game ever. In 2006, Sega released another game that proved to be big on productions values but not nearly as expensive. Yakuza has become a new Sega franchise and already its third game is being worked on for a 2009 release.

The plot of Yakuza takes place in modern Japan following the story of Kazuma Kiryu. A true yakuza badass, he gets put in jail where he being his tale of betrayal and twists. One can expect how these plot devices can occur when you deal with any type of mafia organization. The storyline is not the best ever but it has its moments making you feel like your watching a Japanese yakuza movie (which I think was the plan from the beginning). A downfall of the storyline is the very confusing nature of learning the different names as well as trying to understand the nature of the yakuza hierarchy.

I mentioned earlier the game Shenmue and it's the gameplay that really gives you the feeling that you're playing an off-shoot of that game. You control Kazuma in a very basic fashion: move, walk, talk, buy stuff, play some mini-games. Where the game changes is the fighting. When you're running around or certain points in the storyline, you'll find yourself fighting several enemies at once. In a defined fighting area (typically a room or in the streets surrounded by people, buildings, or railing), you will kick, punch and throw enemies until they're all dead. While simple button layout (a weak attack button, strong attack button, throw button), you will unlock more combos and moves throughout the game. The fun really comes from the "heat" mode. After several successful offensive moves, a meter below your health bar will increase and once it reaches a certain point, Kazuma will glow with a blue aura and will have access to several stronger attacks. Most notably is a mean stomp to the head that just makes you smile every time you use it. In most cases, you can easily beat your opponents with some good timed blocks and button mashing. For bosses and other special enemies, you'll have to properly dodge and block making you plan out your attack properly. The more enemies you defeat, the more moves you unlock and the more stats you'll upgrade. For a nice diversion, you have mini-games like your standard casino games and a toy crane machine. Also, you have the option of participating in a dating sim when you visit "host clubs" in where a young hostess will sit with you while serving you food and drinks. This can be a very expensive side game if you visit them often enough.

Graphically, the game also reminds me of Shenmue with the great character models. Sadly, this is the only place the game excels at and really pushes the PS2 hardware. The backgrounds and non-important character models are very standard for a PS2 game. Although standard, it's still a nice experience of a Tokyo city. To sum up the production, a cast of well known actors was used to provide voices to the main characters. Aside from that, again, very standard audio for a PS2 game.

With a play time of 10-15 hours, you're not getting a game that will last forever. No online play and no real reason for playing through again keeps this game from being replayed unless you're one of those gamers that wants to collect every object a game can offer. What you have though is a great cinematic game that provides a funny gameplay to go along with it.

Oscar Gonzalez - Editor-in-Chief og (@) | all author's articles

What's your most anticipated game for March?

Fire Emblem Fates: Revelation
Tom Clancy's The Division
EA Sports UFC 2
Senran Kagura: Estival Versus
Samurai Warriors 4 Empires
MLB The Show 16
Pokken Tournament
Killer Instinct Season 3
View Results - View Comments


Dat Rocket League

James Bond Quantum of Solace Review

Yakuza 2 Review

Yakuza 3 Demo Impressions

Other Gaming News From The Web