Yakuza: Dead Souls and Me

Kazuma Shaving Yakuza Dead Souls of the End

So, I received Yakuza: Dead Souls through the mail today and I’m totally loving it. For those unfamiliar with the Yakuza franchise, it’s a series that’s incredibly successful in the land of the rising sun. The series involves the Yakuza, who are the Japanese version of the Mafia, and is a very character driven game. The gameplay is a blend of action and role-playing game elements and is absolutely crazy and intense. Honestly, it’s easily one of my more favourite franchises.

The new game takes all the serious drama and development in the past few games and throws it out the window in favour of a complete (narrative) genre-shift. The setting of Kamurocho has been invaded by zombies, and the cast of incredibly badass criminals get together to fight off the zombies. This is pretty much Yakuza vs. Zombie. And it is awesome.

For the most part, the game feels relatively clunky but it’s easily adapted to. During the first stage I found myself failing to even shoot a zombie efficiently, often being attacked before I could strike them at all. After about fifteen to thirty minutes of playing, I managed to pick up on it and started finding myself headshotting, evading and blowing up zombies. It’s really fun, but I’m realising that this certainly isn’t the best title for anyone to be introduced to the franchise. Which screws up my plans.

Y’see, I planned to make this my first review (when I finished it). Now though, I’m not so sure. I’m thinking I should go back and quickly replay the third or fourth title and just review those first. Maybe I can spark interest? For those who’ve actually played the game though, I’ll write the review all the same. Maybe, just maybe, you may be interested enough in reading my opinions.

And if you’re not? Tough shit anyway.