4 Guys, 1 Goal: Yakuza 4

Hi hi, I’m back for another gaming post, another Yakuza post.

This one just recently came out, under the Yakuza Remastered Collection, Yakuza 5 is coming Feb 2020, can’t wait for that one.

This game is split into 5 arcs, with 4 characters arcs of 4 episodes, then a final arc with the final battle. I like this story telling format, it feels complete, it feels nicely done.

Let’s get this show on the road.

Story

I would say despite the 4 character arcs, it doesn’t make this game feel like it lasts any longer. The pacing does feel a bit inconsistent as certain chapters are as long as 2hours and as short as 20 mins. I think that is the reason why it didn’t feel any longer.

As for the storyline, I feel like its a mixed bag. Saejima’s arc felt the weakest overall when I wish they could not give Kazuma that much attention as he is the main character of every Yakuza game so far. Akiyama and Tanimura has pretty decent arcs. But Tanimura can feel a little bit too long at times.

The plot twist did entertain me, and also caught me by surprise. The amount of character deaths has increased again. Yakuza 3 didn’t have that many people dying, but this game is something else. I still think this aspect is this game’s weak point as they lack the justification for that character to die.

The pacing, due to that inconsistent length of each episode, it can be rather unstable. The story moves fast and slow pretty drastically, so it can be hard to catch up.

But overall, I still enjoy the show for what it is, despite the minor flaws. But definitely the weaker ones of the series, even with the massive heavy weight cast.

Graphics

I would say this is a minor step up from Yakuza 3. They are starting to include more real-time rendered cutscenes as opposed to Yakuza 3’s pre-rendered ones. There are still some of those 720p30 pre-rendered cutscenes, but its not as much as Yakuza 3. Character models looked like they improved after realizing that they can push out more from the PS3, which this game was originally developed for.

But that brings a downside as the game size grew significantly, it is now 22GB, which is kind of like 2014 standards in terms of game size.

Otherwise, everything is pretty much the same. Playing on the PS4 Pro really makes the game run extremely smooth. 1080p60 looks clean too. I really can’t wait to see how much they can push out in Yakuza 5.

The game’s reflection quality is also improved a lot, reflections looked extremely high quality, even in our current age. Shadow quality is also improved from the weird models from Yakuza 3.

Gameplay and Mechanics

Pretty much the same as Yakuza 3 but with some fine tuning and also some extra screw ups too.

Heat actions were EXTREMELY difficult to execute in this game, and that’s the most frustrating aspect of the game. The same old “Boss too OP” thing is also pretty much the same as the previous game.

Audio

This has improved drastically compared to the previous game. Game music sounds high quality, voice acting is still top-notched. Most notably the addition of Hirano Aya really made this game sound extremely pleasant. I can’t wait what will the expanded cast be in the next game.

Score: 7.5/10

No brainer for Yakuza fans, just keep playing. And also the newcomers should play Yakuza 0 first.

I still love this game despite the flaws, and also being the weaker game in the series. Post is significantly shorter this time round as this game is similar to Yakuza 3 at some points and I have written my point in the previous post, no point repeating myself again.

That’s it for the gaming reviews for now. Next week, I will be posting my mid-season thoughts so that will take some time to produce. I will give myself a Monday deadline.

I will see you guys then!

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