Yakuza 0 was not typically a game I would enjoy. I was never a fan of any mafia type dramas. But, after watching clips of it from YouTubers I loved watching, I had to play it for myself.
This game combines a dramatic story with ridiculous humor. I love this game series! I will examine why I love the series so much by looking at its prequel since that was the first game I played.
You play as Kazama Kiryu and Goro Majima. Kiryu is a young man who has been falsely accused of murdering a civilian. You have to find out why he was framed and why the place of the murder is so important to the Yakuza.
Kiryu is presented as a serious man. Even for being young he has a strong sense of duty and loyalty. He is loyal to his immediate family and the yakuza.
But, despite seeming to be so tough and serious, Kiryu is also very kind. He has a good heart as seen by his willingness to help his father figure and also how much he cares for his brother, Akira Nishikiyama.
Goro Majima is a civilian working a cabaret club. He is forced to run this club and earn money so he can became part of the Tojo Clan again. This version of Majima first appears to be a fun character because he is supposed to be the leader of a cabaret.
But, it is just a façade for a rigid and desperate character. He desperately wants back in the Tojo Clan and will do anything to go back. But, he is also has a heart. He decides to help a girl being targeted by the yakuza despite also being ordered to kill her.
The gameplay revolves around fighting. Kiryu and Majima have different styles of fighting. Each has four you can pick from. My favorite for Kiryu was his Rush Style because he moved very fast. My favorite overall was Majima’s Breaker style. He fights using break dancing moves which is both funny and effective in combat.
This game has the weirdest side quests which makes it so fun to play. My favorite for Kiryu was his had to help protect a parody of Michael Jackson called Miracle Johnson. Miracle Johnson does the Michael Jackson moves and acts just like him. My favorite for Majima was taking down a weird cult with a ridiculous slogan and rituals.
There is also a lot to explore in this world. There are so many things to do! You can eat Japanese food to restore health. You can play Sega arcade games. You can also do disco and karaoke which were my favorites. The soundtracks for both the disco and karaoke songs are memorable and easily get stuck in your head!
Kiryu and Majima’s stories both have serious moments and heartfelt moments. Despite the absurdity of the world, these stories are emotional. Several times I cried from how emotional these stories can get. Majima’s backstory and Kiryu and Akira Nishikiyama’s moments made me cry the most.
Should you Play Yakuza Games?
I definitely think anyone should give these games a chance! But, it should be noted that this game is entirely in Japanese with subtitles so it will require a lot of reading.I would recommend at least trying the prequel if you are interested in giving the series a chance!
The games are ridiculously fun and have stories that are dramatic and touching. They have complex characters like Kiryu and Majima and characters that will make you laugh like Miracle Johnson. The side quests and exploration also are memorable and break up the serious moments in the story!
Have you played any Yakuza games? What did you think of Yakuza 0?