Author Topic: Yakuza series  (Read 11402 times)

Bhazor

  • Are you rolling your own jelly babies in there?
Yakuza series
« on: August 02, 2018, 04:29:47 PM »
Yakuza, mad bullshit action rpg with a hard emphasis on action and the rpg written as a subscript in italics. Street fighting based around the Virtua Fighter engine and a hub world that may be tiny compared to the likes of GTA but manages to make that tiny plot of land feel more vibrant varied and alive than any other open world game out there.

Go to a posh bar, get drunk, go to the local sega Arcade and play the original version of Out Run, get challenged to a fist fight by three random teenage hoodlums who see this guy and think "Yeah, I could take him", watch some tit models play ping pong, be this guy , Karaoke, have a fist fight on a skyskraper, blow up a skyscraper, have a fist fight inside a burning skyraper, SAVE THE PUPPY, go bowling, raise orphans, own an escort agency, be an escort, Karaoke, challenge a rich man's view on the immorality of the poor, beat him up, spend 20 hours collecting all the parts you need to win the scalextric competition, go to an ice cream parlor and eat a whole tub on your own in the corner, do this
.

Yakuza is mad. It's also one of the most well written game series out there. Managing the MGS trick of taking an absurdist farcical comedy and playing it the funniest way possible. Straight. Its a series that both loves its own world and knows its completely daft. Filled with cliches and tropes executed with a flourish and a wink. Like MGS the game is filled with superfluous dialog and threads, that won't come together until tens of hours later. Yet these scenes are directed so beautifully with such confidence they rarely feel their length and the characters are just so interesting and played so well that you want to watch them yammer on. Its also fascinating to see how it uses a pretty meager budget. On the one hand it has these incredible character models, beautiful cutscenes and the city is filled with thousands of unique assets. But on the other hand npc character models look like they're from the PS2 era, more than half the cutscenes with major characters are text boxes with voice over and most side quests feature zero voice acting. It may also be a result of time constraints with the Yakuza team managing to absolutely pump these games out what they do manage to cram in is incredible. Its also interesting how half the budget of seems to come from product placements. Everywhere you look are ads, every shop has dozens of real world brands, order a drink in a bar and you'll get an immaculate beauty shot of the bottle and a page long blurb straight from the PR company. It's so blatant I kind of love it. Again like MGS where in Peace Walker there is a 10 minute conversation about how amazing the Sony Walkman is and a detailed backstory about how Big Boss invented Doritos. There is nothing sneaky or underhanded like in Hollywood films. It's blatant its in your face and its in on the joke.

Now I'm not the biggest fan of the series, the only ones I've finished being 2 and 4 with 1 getting lost during a house move and 3 being a bit shit. I also haven't played the spin offs. But now with Yakuza 0 coming to PC this week and remastered versions of the rest of the series coming over the next couple years this series is finally getting the attention and sales it deserves.

I'll also take the opportunity to pimp out Yakuza by David E Kaplan. A factual text book on the Yakuza which really drives home the absurdity in the games when you find out how much of the stuff is real. The corporate structure, how yakuza have head offices with their gang insignia on a billboard, the bizarre businesses they invest in (basically single handedly creating speed boat racing), just the sheer amount of money the gangs have and how much power they have in politicals.

https://www.cookdandbombd.co.uk/forums/index.php/topic,62784.msg3264514.html#msg3264514

Consignia

  • Deviant
  • Silver Member
  • ****
  • 저는 사과예요
Re: Yakuza series
« Reply #1 on: August 02, 2018, 06:32:59 PM »
Yes, I love the series. Not sure which one is my favourite, either 5 for it's diversity of gameplay, or 0 for it's distilled greatness. It is a shame so much of it is rehashed though. I think I could close my eyes and imagine every single inch of Kamurocho.

Mister Six

  • Golden Member
  • *****
  • Ridiculously teacakes
Re: Yakuza series
« Reply #2 on: August 02, 2018, 09:49:44 PM »
I downloaded the Yakuza 6 demo based on the rapturous response on here, but bounced off it. Started off well with a fun OTT fist-fight and a good joke about a suspicious white powder, then turned into about an hour of impenetrable backstory cutscene interspersed with non-conversations with some kids in an orphanage that I run, apparently. Got excited when it let me start walking down an alley on the way to do something, then I bumped into a rozzer and as another long cutscene began I just jacked the whole thing in.

Is it worth investing in? Will 6 make any sense if I don't know the characters? Is it just endless fucking MGS-style cutscenes?

Consignia

  • Deviant
  • Silver Member
  • ****
  • 저는 사과예요
Re: Yakuza series
« Reply #3 on: August 02, 2018, 10:16:52 PM »
I wasn't so keen on 6. It's good if you are already fully invested in the series; not just story-wise but gameplay wise. I don't think you need to have played any previous Yakuza game to get on with any other; they are relatively self contained and have to introduce a mostly new cast in each one. 6 does have it's moments, but it's not the ideal starting place.

0 is I'd recommend to pick up from scratch. It's like all the best elements of Yakuza with none of the baggage. And it's set in the 80's, which is real fun time to set something about flashy gangsters.

Bhazor

  • Are you rolling your own jelly babies in there?
Re: Yakuza series
« Reply #4 on: August 02, 2018, 10:34:38 PM »
Yakuza 0 is great so far and being a prequel there's no back story to worry about. It's also been light on fan service and in jokes so thats a plus for new comers. I'd say its a good idea Sega released this first instead of the Yakuza 1 remake.

Of the four I've played my favourite would probably be Yakuza 4. Varies the gameplay up well and all 4 playable characters feel distinct to play and the story is one of the most ludicrous and fun in the series.

Re: Yakuza series
« Reply #5 on: August 03, 2018, 09:45:58 AM »
I love the aesthetic and era and the characters and writing but the actual gameplay is awful and the funny bits are not really funny to me. It's a game which sounds amazing from descriptions but the act of playing it is a lot more hit and miss. I'll finish Zero one day, though.

Re: Yakuza series
« Reply #6 on: August 03, 2018, 10:01:46 AM »
Yakuza 3 was my first introduction to the series, so I've always had a soft spot for it. I even liked Dead Souls (it had the best karaoke song in it: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ooFoNwoMxjY), even though it's not a proper Yakuza game.

I was a bit gutted that they took the massage minigame out for 0, although the webchat minigame nearly made up for it. Watching Kiryu hunt-and-peck out 'BOOOOOOBS' with a serious face really made me laugh.

gmoney

  • Hug a jug of wine
Re: Yakuza series
« Reply #7 on: August 03, 2018, 11:19:20 AM »
I'm excited to learn it's coming to the PC. This is one of those series that I've always looked at with envious eyes, but I've never had the console, so haven't played.

Bhazor

  • Are you rolling your own jelly babies in there?
Re: Yakuza series
« Reply #8 on: August 03, 2018, 11:27:25 AM »

Mister Six

  • Golden Member
  • *****
  • Ridiculously teacakes
Re: Yakuza series
« Reply #9 on: August 03, 2018, 11:35:12 AM »
0 is I'd recommend to pick up from scratch. It's like all the best elements of Yakuza with none of the baggage. And it's set in the 80's, which is real fun time to set something about flashy gangsters.

Cheers!

So is that long intro to 6 actually new backstory that they've added between games?

Re: Yakuza series
« Reply #10 on: August 03, 2018, 08:27:34 PM »
I fucking LOVED the first one on PS2. Felt like a spiritual successor to Shenmue at a time when I'd accepted Shenmue 3 wasn't happening (until it was more recently)

Bought the second one, didn't play it much though, and ultimately didn't go any further.

Recently bought and played Kiwami and remembered why I enjoyed the first one so much, so I got 0 and 6, will be getting Kiwami 2 as well.

Bhazor

  • Are you rolling your own jelly babies in there?
Re: Yakuza series
« Reply #11 on: August 04, 2018, 12:54:50 PM »
It should be mentioned that Yakuza games are fucking massive. Like easily 30 or 40 hours long if you do even half the side quests. 7 hours into Yakuza 0 and I'm only on chapter 3 of 16. It's why picking the good ones is so important, like playing through a JRPG series. If you're going to spend 40 hours on a Final Fantasy game you don't want it to be FF 12 or 13.

Anyone played Kiwami 1? How does it compare to the original first game? I'm looking forward to Kiwami 2 because 2 is one of the best but I really can't build up the energy to replay Yakuza 1 unless they've really changed it up.

FerriswheelBueller

  • CaB rear of the year 2020
  • Silver Member
  • ****
  • Take it easy, but take it.
    • I am antsy for baseball in the off-season.
Re: Yakuza series
« Reply #12 on: August 04, 2018, 03:51:18 PM »
Should I get Yakuza 0 y/n?

Consignia

  • Deviant
  • Silver Member
  • ****
  • 저는 사과예요
Re: Yakuza series
« Reply #13 on: August 04, 2018, 04:05:26 PM »

FerriswheelBueller

  • CaB rear of the year 2020
  • Silver Member
  • ****
  • Take it easy, but take it.
    • I am antsy for baseball in the off-season.
Re: Yakuza series
« Reply #14 on: August 04, 2018, 09:45:54 PM »

New Jack

  • Biggy laughed at my family deaths; won't say sorry
Re: Yakuza series
« Reply #15 on: August 06, 2018, 12:28:03 PM »
I'm enjoying Yakuza Zero having not played this series before ever

Re: Yakuza series
« Reply #16 on: August 06, 2018, 02:25:51 PM »
I got Zero a while ago and slowly working my way through it. I'm taking it at a relatively sedate pace, as I enjoy the 'culture' and setting etc. I agree with comments about the gameplay criticisms earlier, but it doesn't deter me. I'm treating it like a more introspective Streets of Rage and there's enough variety of activity to keep me interested. For all of GTA's open world, this still feels more alive. I suppose there's a risk I burn through the substories far too quickly.

I am also concerned that I'll be willing it to end when I hit later chapters, but until then...

Re: Yakuza series
« Reply #17 on: August 06, 2018, 07:46:27 PM »
I'm treating it like a more introspective Streets of Rage

There's a few big fight sections where you fight waves of bad guys, and playing those makes me think I would bloody love a new Streets of Rage reboot in this style.

Consignia

  • Deviant
  • Silver Member
  • ****
  • 저는 사과예요
Re: Yakuza series
« Reply #18 on: August 06, 2018, 07:52:22 PM »
Like Final Fight Streetwise?

Re: Yakuza series
« Reply #19 on: August 06, 2018, 08:21:10 PM »
Kinda, only... good.

I'm told Streetwise was shit. I've never played it, but played enough Yakuza to know I like the fighty bits. They're done well in Yakuza games.

Consignia

  • Deviant
  • Silver Member
  • ****
  • 저는 사과예요
Re: Yakuza series
« Reply #20 on: August 06, 2018, 08:26:43 PM »
I actually thought Final Fight 3D was Streets of Rage 3D until I looked it up. You can't judge it as shit until you play it. It's probably a hidden gem.

Bhazor

  • Are you rolling your own jelly babies in there?
Re: Yakuza series
« Reply #21 on: August 06, 2018, 11:06:38 PM »
Loving Yakuza 0 so far. Just had a fist fight in the sewers with Mike Reid on a motor bike and now I'm off to play Outrun to impress a chick. I think I might be in there but really my heart belongs to the bowling fetishist. Beast woman is too much for me to handle.

I will say that I hope the new found success for the series over the last two years will lead to the team getting a bigger budget next go around. When the money hose is on and its got the beautiful stylish film sequences it makes GTA 5 look like a load of crap but then the money runs out and it turns into a PS2 era JRPG.

Kinda, only... good.

I'm told Streetwise was shit. I've never played it, but played enough Yakuza to know I like the fighty bits. They're done well in Yakuza games.

Streetwise is shite. Which is a shame as it pretty much killed the genre and replaced with God Of War (original) clones. The two run and punch sequences in 0 have been fantastic though and make me nostalgic for the old brawlers. Surely someone out there must be working on a God Hand spiritual successor?

FerriswheelBueller

  • CaB rear of the year 2020
  • Silver Member
  • ****
  • Take it easy, but take it.
    • I am antsy for baseball in the off-season.
Re: Yakuza series
« Reply #22 on: August 07, 2018, 12:47:54 AM »
Alright, FINE. I just bought Yakuza 0 on sale for $20 (about 12gbp?)

Downloading now. About to get wild on these Japanese mobsters while eating oven chips. Nice.

FerriswheelBueller

  • CaB rear of the year 2020
  • Silver Member
  • ****
  • Take it easy, but take it.
    • I am antsy for baseball in the off-season.
Re: Yakuza series
« Reply #23 on: August 07, 2018, 02:38:07 AM »
Haha this great fun. Take that, drunkards!

Jerzy Bondov

  • best not bother
    • righto so ive got five minutes off work and uh yeah im gonna have a cheeky volvic
Re: Yakuza series
« Reply #24 on: August 07, 2018, 10:51:22 AM »
I will say that I hope the new found success for the series over the last two years will lead to the team getting a bigger budget next go around. When the money hose is on and its got the beautiful stylish film sequences it makes GTA 5 look like a load of crap but then the money runs out and it turns into a PS2 era JRPG.
Yakuza 6 looks a lot more expensive, is fully voice acted and has Beat Takeshi. I'm really enjoying it but they've made the darts too easy and the baseball too hard. Absolutely slaughtered my way through the darts side story; I don't think I lost a match. They haven't quite got the combat right on the new engine, you have to go into Extreme Heat to use all the more interesting moves and I'm not reliably pulling off Tiger Drop like I was in Kiwami. However, I love Ono Michio-kun.

Re: Yakuza series
« Reply #25 on: August 07, 2018, 07:22:08 PM »
However, I love Ono Michio-kun.



I spent at least half an hour making this

Bhazor

  • Are you rolling your own jelly babies in there?
Re: Yakuza series
« Reply #26 on: August 07, 2018, 11:50:02 PM »
I'm really enjoying it but they've made the darts too easy and the baseball too hard. Absolutely slaughtered my way through the darts side story; I don't think I lost a match.

Speaking of minigames, the fishing in Yakuza 0 is terrible. A huge step down from Yakuza 4's Bass Pro minigame. Totally watered down removing all skill and nuance replacing it with incredibly simple QTEs as well as removing the affect of using different baits or rods and not only that it runs really badly with jarring loading between every cast, bite and catch. Likewise Majima's treasure hunting stuff despite some fun fluff is really shallow and given how useless weapons are ultimately pointless. Billiards is great, bowling is great, darts is great, phone sex with ladies is great. The hostess club is great though again its lost some of the pizzazz of the Yakuza 4 version which had sailor scout transformations after a makeover and feels a little less charming. Kiryu's main side game seems pretty shallow at the moment but theres enough mechanics there for it to start getting more interesting later on. Just started on the scalextric side stuff and that looks brilliant with stupid amount of content and some of Kiryu's most emotional moments I've ever seen.


Jerzy Bondov

  • best not bother
    • righto so ive got five minutes off work and uh yeah im gonna have a cheeky volvic
Re: Yakuza series
« Reply #27 on: August 08, 2018, 12:42:21 PM »


I spent at least half an hour making this
When the little girl asks you if you have a girlfriend and you can say "Actually, I'm a virgin" is the funniest thing I have ever seen in a video game.

I loved the cabaret club in Zero. It's back for Kiwami 2 so I'm looking forward to that. Pocket Circuit is absolutely incredible. The Kiwami version has Majima getting involved. Seems to have been shut down by the time of Yakuza 6 but at least you can recruit Pocket Circuit Fighter to beat the shit out of thugs. I've finished the Kiryu Clan storyline and it was okay. The most compelling side activity in Yakuza 6 so far is hanging out in the bar in Onomichi making friends. I love to play darts with Mama.

gmoney

  • Hug a jug of wine
Re: Yakuza series
« Reply #28 on: August 08, 2018, 01:08:23 PM »
I'm enjoying the gameplay of this (Yakuza 0), but there is a hell of a lot of needless cut scenes.

New Jack

  • Biggy laughed at my family deaths; won't say sorry
Re: Yakuza series
« Reply #29 on: August 08, 2018, 05:07:26 PM »
I'm enjoying the gameplay of this (Yakuza 0), but there is a hell of a lot of needless cut scenes.

I've been able to refill my weed vape, heat it up, have a tonk, get a new drink, and have another vape during virtually every cutscene.

Luckily my activities make them more fun!

Sort of glad it's not dubbed. Seems to add a lot of atmosphere.

Tags: