• Publisher: Sega
  • Release Date: Mar 9, 2010

Generally favorable reviews - based on 77 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 59 out of 77
  2. Negative: 0 out of 77
  1. 91
    Let me reiterate: this is a fantastic game, with so much fun to throw your way you'd think you were playing wide receiver with Santa Claus as QB.
  2. Yakuza 3 is workmanlike and archaic in many ways, barely taxing the graphical horsepower of the PlayStation 3, but it's also unique. Most games make the big city a playground for the absurd. Yakuza 3 is only as absurd as an actual big city.
  3. Its old-school design may turn some people off, but the more open-minded among you are in for one hell of a ride. Besides, any game that can make running an orphanage seem fun has got to be doing something very right.
  4. No other Japanese PS3 game to date provides quite such a vivid game-world in which to play. [JPN Import]
  5. An impressively huge game. [Apr 2010, p.111]
  6. A deep, involving, endearing adventure with heart. And ?sts.
  7. Ryu Ga Gotoku 3 (Yakuza 3) is that place where games and films make sweet music together. Stick around for the climax to this outstanding cinematic adventure and you'll go away with a big smile. [JPN Import]
  8. Whether shockingly real or fiercely dramatized, the experiences of Yakuza 3 are wholly Japanese, completely riveting, and absolutely worth the price of admission.
  9. Yakuza 3 combines visual splendour with superb sound design to create an unparalleled atmosphere.
  10. If you're in the market for a sandbox game that's more RPG than GTA, but still want just a smidge of that GTA craziness, Yakuza 3 would be a great a choice, long as you can handle the slow beginning.
  11. A smart crime caper with incredible variety and slick fighting mechanics. [May 2010, p.66]
  12. Those who can look past such things and embrace Yakuza's very Japanese brand of oddity will find a game to make them laugh, make them cry.
  13. As an action game it holds up very well, as an RPG it will keep the average quest junkie enthralled, and as a fishing/karoke/arcade sim, it also manages to tick each of those apparently mutually exclusive boxes with a defiant stroke. As a whole, and, more importantly, as a game, it works.
  14. 90
    It's tons of fun to play whether you're working to actively advance the story or just spending a few hours goofing off and running errands for others.
  15. Yakuza 3, in short, is worth every penny. It contains a compelling story, intense beat-em-up action and more fun than most games dream of providing.
  16. Yakuza 3 is an astounding success in bringing the Japanese culture over in a great package of emotions and raw combat.
  17. If its "only English" status is not a problem and you like Japanese culture, Yakuza 3 becomes a must-buy for a PlayStation 3 owner.
  18. If you can get over the fact that there was quite a bit of content removed from the North American version of the game, you'll find that Yakuza 3 is a very high-quality title.
  19. While I hesitate to call Yakuza 3 a sandbox game, it certainly provides you with an open game where you can participate in a huge number of minigames and side quests. It also offers a fairly lengthy and intriguing main storyline.
  20. North American gamers are getting a more streamlined game, however, as key features in the Japanese version have been cut for fear that Western audiences wouldn't understand them. Still, the core of the game is here, and even with some of the extras missing, there's more than enough content for would-be Japanese mobsters to sink their teeth into.
  21. 85
    A great experience. The story's cool, the fighting's fun, and there's so much to do.
  22. Yakuza 3 is the best game in the series thus far. It fixes a lot of the issues present in the first two, and adds a wealth of new mini games, side missions, and a deeper and more personal story that will reel you in.
  23. 85
    Finally the third part in the franchise is coming to the west. Even though it is a bit different then Western games, it's still a very good game. It's got a great fighting system, a strong story and a lot of hours to play because of the many side-quests. Yakuza 3 is mostly like it's two predecessors, but nevertheless it still contains at the same level of quality fun and its Japanese oriented gameplay.
  24. After years of playing second fiddle in the action-adventure genre, Yakuza 3 finally makes some waves with an engaging, cinematic experience that will punch you right in the face, but in awesomely brutal fashion.
  25. 85
    Yakuza 3 excels thanks to an irresistibly likeable hero, a world pulsing with life, brutally fulfilling battles, and a good 30 hours of core story missions and secondary character tasks.
  26. Walk a mile in the Yakuza's shoes and buckle up for a wild, weird and wacky experience only Japan can deliver.
  27. 85
    It's great fun all the way through and it proves that Sega is still a game company even if their Sonic games suggest otherwise. Absolutely check this one out and spread the word.
  28. If you liked Shenmue, you will love Yakuza 3.
  29. There's this strange lack of weight to Kazuma's movement. It almost feels as if you're gliding around the pavement when exploring, and this sort of transfers into the combat, too. It just doesn't feel like a tight, finely honed mechanic, which brings the entire experience down a few notches.
  30. Yakuza 3 is a good game, it depicts Japan as no one game has done before, but its mechanics and its visuals sometimes are too old school, like the game was a blast from the past. But its biggest flaw is the pace, the game starts a little bit slow and the continuous random combats in the city could be a little bit tedious.
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 131 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 18 out of 22
  2. Negative: 2 out of 22
  1. JohnS
    Mar 16, 2010
    Thoroughly enjoying my time playing this game. Having never played the previous two Yakuza titles, It was the PSN demo that persuaded me to Thoroughly enjoying my time playing this game. Having never played the previous two Yakuza titles, It was the PSN demo that persuaded me to give Yakuza 3 a chance. I'm really glad I did because it has been surprisingly addictive. This game has great atmosphere and is very cinematic. I love the combat, the storyline, the weird and wonderful characters, the cut scenes, sub quests and mini games. Superb value for money. Full Review »
  2. jayn
    Apr 13, 2010
    For someone who loves Japanese culture and wants to experience living there, this game is definitely a must have. Of course there are lots of For someone who loves Japanese culture and wants to experience living there, this game is definitely a must have. Of course there are lots of absurd and unrealistic situations but it's all fun. Gameplay is similar to previous titles but loading is faster in the PS3 so the game is more enjoyable. Fight mechanics are good, mini-games great. People like to compare this with GTA because of the free roaming atmosphere but this game is more like Shenmue (also from SEGA). Full Review »
  3. May 27, 2011
    Who would've thought being a message boy could be so fun? I didn't expect much from this game, but I have to say it held his own pretty well.Who would've thought being a message boy could be so fun? I didn't expect much from this game, but I have to say it held his own pretty well. The combat is intense and visceral, it may be clunky at first, but once you aquire more skills and moves it gets the depth you were waiting for. Never since the day of the final fight/double dragon era has a beat em up game given me such fun. The game starts incredibly slow, and in the first hours you just ache for something interesting to happen, story feels boring and cheesy, combat is lacking, and you can only wonder why do such banal sidemissions exist? (teaching a dog tricks? making banana juice? do shopping?). But before you know it, yakuza gets it's claws on you, you develop an addiction to finish sidequests, just for the sake of seing what will happen next; characters become charming and likable; story becomes interesting (although it remains cheesy); and the combat becomes the most rewarding skull bashing parade I've seen in years (with some minor annoyances). It has many rough edges, and many will hate it, but I can almost say that if you can get past the first few hours you won't be able to leave it before finishing it. Full Review »