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Yakuza 0

PS4 Video Games
8.4

Great

Game Reviews from around the web

100

For all its humour, its intelligent noirish thriller narrative, and the sheer amount of stuff to do, Yakuza’s real strength forever remains in the little details that it gets right about its representation of Japanese cities… Every Yakuza game to date has been a genuine classic, and Yakuza 0 continues the fine form for a series of JRPGs that is right up there with the best of the genre. It’s completely essential.

95

A wondrous melting pot of Japanese cultural excess distilled into a relentlessly compelling synergy of RPG and action elements, Yakuza 0 arguably represents the consummate entry point for newcomers to the series. Without a doubt, Yakuza 0 is a masterpiece and the first must-have title of the year.

95

If Yakuza‘s always been this magnificent, I’ve got a lot of catching up to do and a lot of “friends” to chew out for not recommending it to me sooner.

95

With such a dynamic and interactive interface, Yakuza 0 will keep you coming back for more and even catch you off guard when you least expect. It’s a game everyone should experience or at least try out.

94

Whether you’re visiting Kamurocho for business or pleasure, be prepared to sink another eighty hours into a crime epic that only Sega can deliver.

93

Yakuza 0 shows how unique Yakuza actually is. Drama and humor come together in a setting filled with violent street fights. We all know the concept, but Yakuza 0 takes it to perfection.

93

Yakuza 0 tries a ridiculous amount of things, and I’ll be damned if it doesn’t almost always succeed in its own weird way. The Yakuza series has established a cult following in the West, but it hasn’t managed to break through to the mainstream. If there’s any justice in this world, that’s about to change.

92

The best entry so far of the saga released in Europe, with a brilliant plot, a breathtaking atmosphere that will makes us feel like we’re back in the 80’s, and solid and improved gameplay (including new fighting styles, and steal gameplay sections). Only the fact that it comes only in English and its roots as a PS3 game can be mentioned as issues.

91

Yakuza is one of the most beloved sagas by a legion of fans who appreciate the good work of SEGA in terms of atmosphere, gameplay and narrative. Yakuza 0 is the best of the saga and one of the greatest games on PS4.

90

SEGA tops itself with Yakuza 0, a highlight of an already beloved franchise that manages to succeed in every single way.

90

It’s a truly wonderful trick that Yakuza 0 plays, and rather than work out how it does it, just sit back and let this video gaming alchemy entertain you.

90

If there is a game that fully embodies and actually easily overcomes the definition of “complete package,” that’s Yakuza 0. It’s a rich, colorful and engrossing experience that I can wholeheartedly recommend to anyone who loves the genre, Japanese culture, or simply a very, very good story with some of the best and most genuinely likable characters you’ll ever encounter in gaming.

90

Yakuza 0 is everything fans of the series want it to be. It contains its trademark style, enhanced graphics, smooth framerate and an excellent story. By design, it is also a throwback to older gameplay styles and tropes and is not only proud of the fact, it’s downright smug about it. It is a game to be enjoyed, savored and explored, warts and all, for as many hours as possible. While not perfect, it is definitely an instant classic and worthy of your time and money (which you can always earn back by stomping on street toughs in Kamurocho).

90

With Yakuza 0, Sega’s managed to give the long-running series a shot in the arm, re-invigorating it for longtime players, and making it accessible to anyone that was turned off by jumping in so late in the series before.

90

Yakuza 0 is easily one of the highlights of the PlayStation 4’s lineup. An engaging story mixed with zany humor and over-the-top brawler gameplay, the title hits all the marks. It has its flaws, including a potential overreliance on non-brawling minigames, but they’re not enough to drag down the game. Fans of the franchise should be delighted, and newcomers should find this title as a great place to dive in. The plot, characters and setting are instantly accessible, and the gameplay holds up extremely well.

90

While I completed Yakuza 0 in roughly thirty hours, I didn’t feel like I had done everything the game had to offer. This is a game that is completely bursting with content just begging to be uncovered and explored. With each successive Yakuza game, it’s clear that this series is growing in a variety of ways, and it makes my heart so happy. Yakuza 0 has risen to the top of my favourite games of all time, easily pushing past Yakuza 2, which had held the spot as my favourite Yakuza for many years. Whether you are a newcomer to the series or a veteran of it, Yakuza 0 offers so much to gamers with its spellbinding storytelling and plethora of content. Enchanting until the last chapter, Yakuza 0 is the pinnacle of the series and it looks to be difficult to unseat.

90

Fans of the series will likely love it, but for newcomers this is the best time to jump in. I am happy to have finally taken the plunge, and over time I can see myself returning to the series, especially with two more games already scheduled to hit PS4 soon. There is plenty here to enjoy, and I guarantee there is nothing else quite like Yakuza.

90

Yakuza 0 is, simply put, the best game of the series and one of the best examples of how a franchise should evolve through the years. It offers an incredible story, fantastic and fresh gameplay mechanics, a rich and lively world plagued with ton of things to do and enjoy. You cannot pass this one by any means.

90

Despite the shallowness of the combat, you’re always being pulled towards something new, and you can’t help but be carried along by it. Whenever you tire of one thing, the next distraction or big set-piece is just a few minutes away – just be prepared to be offered pocket tissues, have a few scraps, and become someone’s agony aunt.

90

A novel twist on familiar gameplay elements, Yakuza Zero once again delivers a unique blend of real-world immersion, humanistic storytelling, and some of the best action gameplay on the market.

90

To play Yakuza 0 is to deeply fall in love with its characters and world; a challenge that many games try to conquer, but only a handful ever manage to actually achieve.

90

Yakuza 0’s story is full of twists and turns that’ll keep you guessing and make it exceedingly hard to put the controller down. The final few hours of this game are absolutely phenomenal. I’m not sure words can properly do it justice, there’s plenty of major events that cause you to shout out to no one in particular in the middle of the night just from pure excitement.

90

Yakuza 0 is a game that demands the audience’s full attention, and it’ll get that whether it’s through a heart-stopping revelation or a quiet moment that leaves the player with misty eyes. If a compelling narrative is what you look for in a videogame, then you’d best get ready for a night on the town with the Tojo clan.

90

Even after a dozen years and seven (or eleven) games, Yakuza 0 is an impressive and easy invitation to its namesake’s adrenalized world.

90

Yakuza 0 is a great entry into the series, with plenty for old fans and newcomers alike. Its story is cheesy and melodramatic at times, and the graphics are a bit outdated, but between a nearly perfect melee combat system and a city bursting at the seams with activity, anyone looking for a sandbox crime game should definitely pick this one up.

90

The second best Yakuza game ever after Yakuza 3 and a breathtaking mix of mini-games, fighting, mob plots and Japanese craziness.

90

It features all of the best aspects of the series with very little of the negatives, making for a game that I’ll probably still be digging through by the time Kiwami releases over here.

90

While it still suffers from the same flaws as its predecessors, Yakuza 0 is a great reminder why Sega’s series is so special.

90

Yakuza fans are in for a massive treat with Yakuza 0.

88

Yakuza 0 is probably the best episode of the series. A gaming experience which you should try once in your lifetime. A great crime-story which will not disappoint you.

88

Yakuza 0 is a terrific game, packed with a simple structure but extremely rich in content. The campaign tells a long, deep, violent story, with two charismatic characters and a whole lot of enemies to fight.

88

Yakuza 0 is the perfect prologue to an underestimated – at least here in Europe – yet rich and complex saga. The story is really intriguing, albeit dedicated to hardcore Japan fans, with its dialogues in Japanese (English-subbed). The gameplay is genuinely, and truly, “Japanese”. If you love Japan, this is a game you shouldn’t miss.

85

As an origin story, Yakuza 0 is a perfect starting point for series newcomers, and a wonderful look in to the past for those already familiar with Yakuza. While its combat can become a slog, soaking up the sights and sounds of a 1980s Tokyo criminal underground is enchanting.

85

Yakuza 0 has so much to offer, even though some aspects are a bit outdated. Look past this and you’ll see a great game with a perfect combination of action, storytelling and RPG elements.

85

Yakuza 0 starts 2017 with a very enjoyable gaming experience that takes elements from a variety of genres and then blends them together like some Iron Chef of gaming!

85

Yakuza 0 is one of the best episodes of the series, and a great choice if you haven’t played it before. It polishes the gameplay and delivers a great adventure you rarely find in other RPGs.

85

Yakuza 0 is not for everybody but it the perfect game to introduce you to this series. Over the years lots of unique elements became better and better and Y0 is a prequel – that means an easier transition. There are some technical issues, and some cut-scenes could be shorter but overall this crazy, colorful adventure is worth your time.

85

Yakuza 0 is one of the best games in the series so far. It goes back to the origins, leaving behind the high number of locations and characters, but thanks to it is also more focused in the plot and the development of deep and complex mechanics around the money, the great protagonist of this new entry.

85

Yakuza 0 may not have the best visuals or the biggest game world but its outstanding gameplay and amount of content make it a must-buy prequel for fans of the series.

85

Yakuza 0 feels a bit like an anime that also happens to be an action/fighting game. The only problem is that the fighting feels dated, though the environmental options and multiple fighting styles to master help to spice things up a little. A genuinely entertaining and captivating story lurks in the seedy underworld of Tokyo, where a miniscule empty lot somehow sparks a massive conflict.

85

If you’re a fan of the series, you’re going to want to play this–Yakuza 0 encapsulates the zaniness of Japanese culture with spectacular side missions, and is aided by it’s own satisfying combat and recreational activities.

85

While its melee combat may lag slightly behind modern genre standards, Yakuza 0 still hits far more than it misses and is a big, bold and bruising tour through the Japanese underworld.

83

Yakuza 0 is a fantastic journey through the seedy underbelly of the ’80s in Japan. The game’s strong narrative core, filled with memorable characters, is the perfect driving force between engaging combat, memorable sidequests, and time-devouring minigames.

83

There’s a lot to do in Yakuza 0, but it may take you some time to get through the game. While the story is very compelling, there are so many side activities that are equally entertaining, it may be difficult to pull yourself away to continue with the main story. If you have a history with the Yakuza series, there are even moments when you see where these characters began that will make you feel even closer to the grouping of polygons on your TV screen. Almost everything about Yakuza 0 is well-done and exceeds expectations.

83

Almost two years have passed since Yakuza 0’s original launch and it has its impact on visuals. However, it is leveraged with a superb plot, addictive gameplay mechanics and the usual and humongous array of minigames at our grasp, in order to fill around 60 or 70 hours of play.

80

Yakuza 0 is a strong testament to the level of detail and the amount of content the series is known for. The writing is equal parts a compelling crime thriller and a hilarious spoof of Japanese culture, the combat is simplistic but unobtrusive with some satisfying hard hits, and the numerous amounts of side activities, unlockables, mini-games and extra modes will keep players satisfied and busy before the next game rolls around.

80

Even though the Yakuza series is more than 10 years old, Yakuza 0 feels like a fresh new start on PS4. The fact that the story takes place before Yakuza 1 makes Yakuza 0 the perfect starting point for new gamers. The game takes place in an incredible recreation of Japan near the end of its “Bubble Economy” and makes gamers feel as if they are in Japan during that time. The game manages to be both very serious and incredibly funny and, cherry on the cake, gives players a ton of things to do. Yakuza 0 is truly one of the better episodes of the series.

80

Yakuza 0 is a specific game that demands turning a blind eye on some elements, like mediocre graphics, technical shortcomings, long cutscenes and slow story. If we can accept these issues, Yakuza offers a rich world and hours upon hours of gameplay. Seems like the best moment to check out this Japanese fenomen.

80

If you can endure the clunky combat that pervades much it – and if I can, you certainly can too – you’ll find a wonderful game in Yakuza 0. It tells a captivating story in its own right, and it’s also a perfect jumping-on point for the series, especially with Yakuza Kiwami, a remake of the first game, due out later this year. If nothing else, do it for the karaoke, hostess clubs, and the chance to make a difference in the life of an up-and-coming dominatrix.

80

The most entertaining Yakuza game so far, that’s part gangster epic and part surreal Japanese nightlife simulator.

80

Since its debut in 2006, Yakuza has been relegated to a niche audience in the West, which is more heartbreaking than ever after finishing Yakuza 0. It’s a game that offers an abundance of varied activities and memorable stories. Even with a lack of difficulty and a few minor pacing hiccups, Yakuza 0 demonstrably proves that this long-running series has so much bite left in it.

80

Yakuza 0 is not only an achievement in video game storytelling, but it’s the best this franchise has ever felt, looked, and played.

80

The problem with tough guy heroes isn’t that they’re done too often, it’s that they’re so rarely done well. In that regard, Yakuza 0 felt like a revelation — even in spite of some significant shortcomings. It keeps a consistent, strong pace, and it doesn’t meander through side streets you’d rather avoid. But more importantly, it’s just so damned cool. It’s vicious and grand, but bears its heart and soul. It has fun without completely sacrificing its gravitas.

80

It’s easy to recommend Yakuza Zero to all fans of the series, as it tells a brilliant origin story that shows unseen sides of both the Kazuma and Majima personalities, and, at the same time, it’s easy to dismiss this prequel as “another Yakuza game” for those whio never got to like the series. All in all, it’s a solid and well written debut on PS4.

80

Yakuza 0 is the perfect game for those who never played any Yakuza to enter in this epileptic and violent world of madness made in Takashi Miike’s best dreams.

80

While a bit disappointing on the mini-game front, Yakuza 0 remains as strange and charming as ever, with the best story and combat the series has seen in years.

80

By weaving a complex web of relationships and alliances, Zero’s story grows ever more fascinating, proving to be equal parts surprising and exciting from beginning to end.

80

At this point, the property’s trademark formula is seriously starting to wear thin, but when it comes down to it, there’s nothing quite like Yakuza 0. It combines unapologetically mature themes and violence with brilliantly dumb minigames and hysterical side quests, resulting in a thoroughly memorable experience. Bolstered by a gripping story that’s packed with great characters, fans of Japanese games or even Japanese culture owe it to themselves to give this a prequel a shot. Yakuza 0 is fantastic place to start a love affair with Kamurocho’s finest, and what’s more, it’s one of the best entries in the series to date.

75

This is a game from the ’80s, for the ’80s and should be enjoyed as such.

74

Slight changes in the fighting system, and slightly rearranged visuals: Even 30 years in the past Yaukza is the game it always was. The concept is still cool – but feels slightly overused.

70

Yakuza 0 offers a great story and loads of side activities, but dated mechanics keeps it from being considered a true stroke of genius.

70

In all its weirdness Yakuza 0 is as charming as the series ever has been. It isn’t a game for everyone, but for those who fall for this there will be tons of stuff to do, wonderful settings to visit and well-written characters to meet.

70

Beyond the era and location-specific authenticity strived for and achieved in this title, both the dated combat and graphics leave something to be desired.

70

Yakuza 0 is one of the best entries in the entire series. Unfortunately Nagoshi’s work needs a strong technical upgrade to bring Yakuza series to the next level and to be suitable to a broader market.

70

The best of Yakuza Zero is actually not the part you’re playing, but the part you’re watching. It can seem harsh, but that’s a feeling you can’t deny as the former is far from being as good as the latter. It’s still a great storyline though and the game developers have the talent to make it alive.

65

I’d never played a Yakuza game before this one, much to the dismay of certain friends. While it’s definitely a daunting franchise to enter into, Yakuza 0 is simultaneously the best and worst starting point for newcomers like myself.

60

It has the challenging combat and wacky humor that you’d expect, and the story is top-notch. Also, who can pass up on a chance to see Majima while he’s still relatively sane? If you’ve never tried one, it may be a bit weird to you at first, but if you’re willing to wade through it all, there’s an enjoyable experience to be had.

50

Yakuza 0 takes it back to where it all began, but a mildly interesting setting and story don’t quite make up for the game’s more tedious elements.

Game Reviews from around the web

By now, the Yakuza series knows what butters its fans’ bread, and their spread of choice is theatrics. That means exaggerated comedy, tragedy, and more often, some uncommon blend of the two. The combat, while offbeat and satisfying in its own ways, is definitely a supporting role.

Such is the strange appeal of Yakuza: beneath all the bizarre Japanisms and po-faced sentimentality lies an almost-bottomless reservoir of charm.

This isn’t a GTA clone, or an RPG, nor is it a brawler. It’s something more than that but also different, a human drama that combines rudimentary game elements and weaves them into something that can make you laugh, cry and feel within the space of minutes.

There’s a lot to love about Yakuza 0, but it’s going to take me a while to work my way to the story’s finale. The endless brawling turns the whole thing into a real chore, I’m afraid. But I will say that as tired as I’ve already become of the constant beatdowns, the story and general self-confidence of the game makes me want to power through. And for anyone who doesn’t share my disinterest in punch-ups — well, there’s literally no reason for you not to give Yakuza 0 a try. It really is like no other game I’ve ever played. Because it’s the Japanese version of Grand Theft Auto, and that means something weird, wonderful, and decidedly not at all like Grand Theft Auto.

If you resent games walling the player off or insisting on where they go next, you will hate Yakuza 0. But it uses its distinctly un-Western sense of constraint and mise–en–scène to tell a story more intelligent and subtle than anything you’d find in its foreign counterparts.

Summary

The most entertaining Yakuza game so far, that’s part gangster epic and part surreal Japanese nightlife simulator.
8.4

Great

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