Yakuza Zero for PS4 and PS3 is a new installment of the popular action game series established in 2006 with a release on PlayStation 2, generally perceived as a Japanese response to the Grand Theft Auto series. Similarly to the previous installments and spin-offs, the game was developed by SEGA, with Yakuza Zero being a series’ debut on eight generation consoles.
When it comes to story, Yakuza 0 is a prequel of the whole series – we are taken to 1988, being a witness to events that happened seven years before the events shown in the first installment of the series. The game stars two protagonists: Kazuma Kiryu, a 20 year old member of the Tojo clan, and Majima Goro, a 24 year old businessman looking for action. The first hero dreams of making his mark on the Tokyo’s underworld while moonlighting as a debt collector, while the second one, even with a legal business working for him, searches for a way back to life of crime. The heroes meet while tensions rise as two hostile clans fight for domination over one of Tokyo’s districts.
The gameplay is similar to what we could experience in the previous installments of the series, and is based on the typical third person perspective model. However, Yakuza is characteristic for its complex combat system and specific atmosphere of metropolitan Japan. As a result, the game mixes steady, role-playing segments with dynamic pursuits, shootouts and brawls full of spectacular cut scenes. However, the leisure segments are also engaging, involving exploration of city streets, conversations with encountered characters, and completing numerous story missions. The world is open and exploration-friendly, full of additional activities that can be undertaken by our heroes. The game sports atmospheric visuals and since it’s located in Far East, we encounter a lot of eye-catching elements and distractions.