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Yakuza Image
Metascore
75

Generally favorable reviews - based on 58 Critics What's this?

User Score
8.7

Generally favorable reviews- based on 36 Ratings

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  • Summary: (Known in Japan as "Ryu Ga Gotoku") In a society where respect and honor holds great importance, there is an even higher regard for these traits within the one organization that is most feared by all: the Yakuza. Kiryu Kazuma – a former rising star in the Yakuza who is rebuilding his life after serving a 10-year prison term for murder – suddenly finds himself caught in a spiraling underworld plot involving a mysterious girl known as Haruka and a missing $100 million. Kazuma must use his fists and his wits to stay alive as he unravels the complex web of truth and lies that surrounds the notorious Yakuza. Yakuza delivers a balance of action and adventure with its immersive storyline and stylish fighting mechanics created specifically for the game. Players can string together attack combinations to take out multiple enemies in sidewalk showdowns, while defending the Yakuza territory and reputation by picking up weapons to crush opponents. Kazuma can also "educate" delinquent debtors through visceral shakedowns by grabbing and smashing them against walls and tables, then delivering final skull-shattering blows when the Heat Gauge is maximized. With a customizable status gauge, players can increase strength, stamina, and skills through combat. [Sega] Expand
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 37 out of 58
  2. Negative: 2 out of 58
  1. A long and riveting story, plenty of freedom and a fantastic battle system have earned it a spot on my all-time Playstation 2 top 10 list. [Sept 2006, p.52]
  2. With its compelling characters and story, Yakuza is still a remarkable game. [Oct 2006, p.72]
  3. The action comes fast, the plot is exciting, and you couldn’t ask for a better brawler near the end of the PlayStation 2's life cycle.
  4. A captivating, story-driven fighting adventure with great characters, but not everyone will enjoy the violence and repetition.
  5. Yakuza’s a thoroughly enjoyable game that carries the burden of the usual flaws. A fighting system hurt by the camera and faulty lock-on, long loading times, and no real innovation.
  6. A good game that never seems in danger of being great. It’s like exploring a slice of life in another culture; you’re not quite sure what you’re going to get but you keep trying to get something.
  7. Roam around Tokyo, find some bad guys, see some load screens, a couple of cut-scenes, some more load screens, press some buttons in fight mode and so on.

See all 58 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 11 out of 15
  2. Negative: 0 out of 15
  1. May 26, 2011
    10
    this game does not have a name or the packaging like god of war or devil may cry that easily acttracts gamers and so it's often overlooked. And who can blame us,i mean who really cares about yakuzas (i know i don't) but after a friend recommended it to me i finally got the game and i was so glad i did. The story in this game can only be found in a great movie or a best seller novel for it's that damn good.it involves love,betrayer,honour and even tragedy.after taking the fall for his best friend,our hero gets out of prison only to find out his girlfriend is missing,betaryed by bestfriend and yakuza world in chaos.he must protect a mysterious little who would lead him to the truth. With awesome characters,great combat system,free roaming gameplay and great looking cut scenes i must say yakuza is a master piece. A game for only hardcore gamers,casual gamers be warned Expand
  2. Apr 11, 2013
    10
    this game is freaking awesome its a spiritual successor to Shenmue and man did it surpass shenmue already amazing story and a unique gameplay for an open world game like this was just genius if sega ever plans to make Shenmue 3 then they should leave it in the hands of the people who made Yakuza 1-5 Expand
  3. Mithyus
    Apr 1, 2007
    10
    Kazuma and his story are entangling and amazing from start to end, and while the gameplay plays as a lesser element, it still does a pretty decent job. Collapse
  4. MaxT.
    Sep 29, 2006
    9
    Best game I've played in along time, fraction to easy.
  5. FawazB.
    Jan 10, 2007
    9
    One of the coolest bash em up games I've played...but they should have added some more features to make it more like a true crime kind of game play. Would have been better. Expand
  6. AndrewL.
    Sep 14, 2007
    8
    This game has so much potential that was not utilized. The story and characters are great. There is entirely too much cursing and the beat downs you administer to others quickly get old. I like how when you get approched by a thug he says a curse word that can only be described as sounding like a chicken cluck. The game is plagued with bad camera angles that do not make the game unmanageble but do make it annoying. The weapons system is not unlike streets of rage in that you use a weapon so many times than it is disgarded, but I think the game could benefit from permanent weapons. Despite all the things I have said it is still a good game and is very enjoyable. It however just lacks the refinement required to make it a great game. Expand
  7. SL
    Sep 13, 2006
    6
    Story is fine, although it feels a bit like Gungrave, but not as good. Sound is fine as well, except for the annoying looping town talk which loops every 5 seconds. The voice acting is poor as always when it comes to american voice actors. I do like Michael Madsen's voice though. They should properly educate their people how to prounounce Japanese names right, especially when a game like this is supposed to be Japan. Gameplay is horrible. I hate the camera switching and the way you manage to run with your character in the direct opposite direction of where you want to go, as soon as the camera switches. Fighting system is worthless as well. You have a 'On Target' kind of thing when you press R1, but it all comes down to: as soon as your opponent dodge your attacks, your character will be targeting nothing but air and have your back turned to your enemy. Camera angles during fights can be messy as well as you can't really control it, except to turn it "straight forward" of where your character are looking. But as soon as you walk forward a bit and come close to a wall, it will automatically go little by little to a side view and voila, there's no chance to see what's coming. You get to fight several mobs at a time too and it's when these sequences kick in that you'll notice how horrible it can be with the targeting system. You get ganged up and can't do jack about it except for taking a beat, back out and try again. The 'exp system' is fairly ok and they made the streets of Japan look really nice with all neon signs and people walking around. Unfortunately, people may pop up in one section but dissappear right when you enter the next. Loading times can be annoying during the switch between walking around in town and getting yourself into a fight. Overall, it is an OK game. Nothing out of the extraordinary but it has it's charm with a few nice characters and story. Expand

See all 15 User Reviews