Yakuza 3 Catch-All

The demo for Yakuza 3 hit the PSN today. I had this misconception of the game as "the Japanese GTA". The only similarities it seems to have in common are that you're a guy involved in the underworld in a city.

I had fun with it. I went in expecting something totally different. After this demo I get the impression that if they ever made a Final Fight RPG then this is how it would be designed. Has anyone played the import? Other games in the series? What can one expect from the rest of the game?

I'm in the midst of the first one now, and I'm enjoying it.

In some ways it's like an RPG - there's a linear story and random encounters.

But the fighting is more like a 3D brawler with special moves.

It's an interesting mix but I can see how it's not for everyone.

>>> In some ways it's like an RPG - there's a linear story and random encounters.

There's also levelling up, buying special moves, and so on.

-Andy

Thanks for the heads up! Interested in checking this one out after missing the first two.

I'm confused why a Yakuza 3 demo going up.

Isn't Yakuza 4 already released in Japan?

I think Yakuza 4 has been announced, but not sure if it's out in Japan yet.

As far as Yakuza 3 goes, I think Sega intended for it to be exclusive to Japan...but there was enough interest that they finally decided to bring it over for March 2010. That's why the demo is hitting now, even though the Japanese release of the game is almost a year old.

I'm definitely interested in checking out the demo - like the OP, I had pegged this series as a "japanese GTA", but some of the 1up podcast conversations about the game over the last year have piqued my interest.

Definitely going to download the demo (barring region stupidity), this has always been a series I was interested in. As it happens I'm coming stateside in March, so might pick this up then.

It's GTA because of the open world and involves crime. That's about where that ends. It's definitely more of a brawler coupled with an open world rpg. The attention to detail and good story and characters is what defines this series, though the fighting mechanics are a bit outdated anymore.

That's why it's good there is a demo.

Thanks for the heads-up, definitely interested in checking out this demo.

I beat the first two games as a sort of personal "horizons broadening" thing as I'd heard they were really good. The stories and the world are cool but be warned that the difficulty ramps up very fast and the ends of both games are full of incredibly frustrating encounters that will make you want to throw your controller. Unless you're good at fighting games, I highly recommend playing on Easy (which is still challenging.) I'm anxious to grab this demo and see what they did on PS3 for sure.

I enjoyed the demo. Day one purchase. Hmmmm, not in March. Too much else on my plate. The question is, is this a limited run? Will it be $90 in 6 months from 3rd party sellers?

That's my worry. Yakuza 2 was rare pretty much out of the gate and if you didn't buy it day one, it ended up costing you a lot more down the road. There's no way I can afford to anything but rent this day one but I'm hoping it'll get a decent reception so there will be a bigger run. This is one game I really want to buy because every copy counts.

I played the Japanese PSN demo a while back and did not really get into it--though maybe I'm taking out my hostess-club frustration on the game generally.

Anyway, it seemed cheesy to me. That and I don't understand Japanese.

grobstein wrote:
I played the Japanese PSN demo a while back and did not really get into it--though maybe I'm taking out my hostess-club frustration on the game generally.

Anyway, it seemed cheesy to me. That and I don't understand Japanese.

Cheesy in what way?

The game is a JRPG through and through. The brawler similarities is in combat only. The only similarities to GTA are the urban environment, organized crime, and the mini map.

That said, if what you don't like about JRPGs is the anime style and wacky stories, then the Yakuza series may be the JRPG for you.

Oh nice, I like me some demos. I'll be checking this out over the weekend.

Two thoughts:

1) I can't stand the tick tick tick tick tick of words filling the text window and whooshing noises when I press a button to speed them up. Let me disable those sounds or have the words auto-fill the box immediately, especially in a conversation heavy game.

2) Combat reminds me of Jade Empire a bit. I don't think it demos well for someone like me who hasn't play the previous games. I suspect it would make more sense if you ramp up to it from the start of the game.

The demo has definitely cooled my interest some.

Diamond Sutra wrote:
>>> In some ways it's like an RPG - there's a linear story and random encounters.

There's also levelling up, buying special moves, and so on.

-Andy

Good point, I had forgotten about that.

Certis wrote:
I can't stand the tick tick tick tick tick of words filling the text window and whooshing noises when I press a button to speed them up. Let me disable those sounds or have the words auto-fill the box immediately, especially in a conversation heavy game.

This I take as just part of the slightly dated ways of the game. That's one reason I'm struggling on whether I should purchase it or not.

So, not too impressed, I must say. The graphics look like they're rendered on a PS2 and upscaled. I don't consider myself very precious about visuals, but this is lacklustre. It didn't help that I sampled the Heavy Rain demo on the same day.

However, I do like the presentation, the fighting and the whole notion of "simulating" a gangster's life on the streets. The setting is seriously cool. I love the protagonist. I believe I will be picking this up at some point, but not for the full asking price. I can see why Sega took so long to bring it to Western audiences - it feels like a decidedly Japanese game, no concessions made for Western tastes.

This definitely plays like a higher-res Yakuza game from the PS2 and that's both good and bad. The atmosphere and attention to detail is very impressive (even if the textures are a little weak) but the game still has lousy camera, blocking mechanics that only work when the game feels like it and enemies that still fight cheap and dirty. When I can afford to get in on this game, I'll definitely be playing on Easy.

While not an issue for some, releasing this the same day as FFXIII is a pretty big problem for the tragically lame like me. The demo was interesting enough, but, come on. I truly don't get it--why release a game that needs the small niche of Japanophiles to support it the same day as a game from the series that arguably defines Japanophiledom?

It could be that they are trying to get out what they can in the remaining fiscal Q2 with release conflicts only concerning their own titles. Still..like you said, going up against FF is madness.

SpacePPoliceman wrote:
While not an issue for some, releasing this the same day as FFXIII is a pretty big problem for the tragically lame like me. The demo was interesting enough, but, come on. I truly don't get it--why release a game that needs the small niche of Japanophiles to support it the same day as a game from the series that arguably defines Japanophiledom?

Well, the Yakuza fans are going to buy it anyway, and the history of the first two games basically proves to Sega that they aren't going to get a ton of sales beyond that, so what's the difference. Besides, March is packed, so no matter what week they picked, they would have been running up against a bigger title.

This is just as a heads up, but if anyone wants to play the previous games first, they should. I played Yakuza 1 for the first time a few months ago, and it still holds up very well. It's an extremely fun and well paced game even by today's standards. I found it online for $30, but I'm sure you could find somewhere where it's $20 if you look hard enough. It is completely worth the money.

Apart from decent-yet-not-amazing PS3 graphics (as opposed to decent-yet-not-amazing PS2 graphics), the ability to control the camera with the right stick, and a handful of small additions here and there, this demo feels exactly like Yakuza 1. I'm actually a bit disappointed, because I was hoping that the series had maybe advanced a little in Yakuza 2 (which I bought last year but still haven't even opened since I have yet to finish Yakuza 1.) Oh well, I'd still like to pick this game up.

There is a bit of a ....kerfuffle at the moment about content in Yakuza 3, because content has been cut from the game.

http://blogs.sega.com/usa/2010/02/24...

And the responses.

http://kotaku.com/5478862/sega-you-a...
http://ps3.ign.com/articles/107/1071...
http://www.destructoid.com/yakuza-3-...

I was already on the fence with this with the "being forced to buy at Gamestop to get particular content".

After this, I'm out.

The idea of excluding the content from a game whose demographic is most likely those interested, at least mildly, in Japanese culture is misguided for sure. Excluding the historical quizzes is ok seeing as that is a bit too far removed from Western knowledge. It's not like the hostess club scenes were removed because of mature content. I mean, they are leaving strip clubs in the game.

Supposedly you can still go on dates with the girls but just not woo them over Don Peri and idle chatter. Virtual dating creeps me out and I wouldn't have done these events anyways. Dating sims are popular games in Japan but virtually unheard of in the West. So their logic was "let's not waste effort on porting something that's too far removed culturally" and not some malicious plot against the consumer.

Well...

First they said they were removing things which wouldn't "resonate" with Western gamers, which is ridiculous because Yakuza is a game that caters to a pretty niche audience that knows what it's getting.

The next day they changed their story and said it was due to "budgetary" concerns.

So they can't keep their story straight.

And as far as the cut content

- Quiz Minigame
- Club (Datingsim) –> included in part I and II
- The Hostess Club (Kiryu as Manager) –> included in II
- Shogi (Japanese chess) –> included in II
- Mahjong –> included in II
- Massage Minigame –> included in I and II

I fail to see how most of these are cost consuming. Mah Jong? Really?
And considering how most were included in the other games, it's not like people don't know what they're buying.

The whole thing comes off as entirely halff-assed.

I want my Hostess Club.

Local GameStop got one copy of this...the one I pre-ordered.