The Yakuza Remastered Collection Review – Where Do You Begin an Epic Franchise?

The final addition to the The Yakuza Remastered Collection has been unleashed upon the world finally allowing gamers to experience the entire Western released Yakuza saga on their PS4. The only question now shouldn’t be if it’s worth your time and money to own them (it is), rather in which order you should play them.

 

 

For those who don’t know what the real Yakuza is, it is Japan’s organized crime syndicate, or mafia. The Yakuza video game series borrows heavily from that world but uses completely fictional characters and locations. The early video games follow Kazuma Kiryu, a man locked up for a crime he didn’t commit who then returns to Kamurocho, a fractured and volatile city, while the later games allow you multiple choices as to who you can play as.

The Yakuza Remastered Collection, containing Yakuza 3, Yakuza 4, and Yakuza 5, picks up right after the events of Yakuza Kiwami 2 and we strongly suggest you start with the previous titles. Even though there are recap videos that will tell you the general synopsis up to that point,t These videos really do not do the previous games justice, and they are well worth your time to enjoy.

 

Games and New features included in The Yakuza Remastered Collection

The Yakuza Remastered Collection is far from a typical console generation port. In addition to graphical and performance upgrades (720p>1080p at 30>60fps), all three games have gone through a rigorous re-localization process. The English scripts for each game have been reviewed, revised, and even rewritten in some cases, and content previously cut from the Western releases of Yakuza 3, 4, and 5 have been re-added in The Yakuza Remastered Collection.

In Yakuza 3, this means the Mahjong, Shogi, Massage Parlor, and ever-popular Cabaret minigames, as well as a collection of Substories cut from the original release, are now available in the West for the first time!

Several quality-of-life changes have also been added for each release in the collection, including a Substory tracker on the map and the ability to toggle between English and Japanese written lyrics during Karaoke.

Other Games in the Series

All games are now available on the PlayStation store, either in bundles or stand alone titles.

What is the Proper Order of the Yakuza Series?

Chronologically speaking the correct order of the games would have you start with Yakuza 0, due to it being a prequel to the original game, Yakuza Kiwami, and then you would go through the rest in order from Yakuza Kiwami 2 through Yakuza 6: The Song of Life. The only problem with that is that Yakuza 0 does have some possible spoilers and events you may not fully understand due to it coming out after the release of Yakuza 5. With that being said, you probably should play the series in the order they were originally released, so Yakuza 0 wouldn’t be played until after Yakuza 5 and before Yakuza 6: The Song of Life. Regardless of the path you take, it’s a long and entertaining journey.

For a remastered series, with the exception of Yakuza 6: The Song of Life, which was built for this generation of consoles, the games more than stand up on their own merit. Sega has done an incredible job of polishing all of the titles, reworking areas that needed it, working on localizations that needed it, and adding content that was originally removed from Western releases. If you can find the time, this is a series that is worth the investment.

10


The Yakuza Origins Digital Bundle, The Yakuza Remastered Collection, and Yakuza 6: The Song of Life review codes provided by publisher over time and reviewed on a PS4 Pro. For more information on scoring, please read What our review scores really mean.