In this video, presented in DANKVISION, Chet and Vega talk about Yakuza Kiwami 2, and whether or not they should make a Kiwami version of all of the Yakuza games before the next generation of consoles. Just imagine having all 6.5 games on one console! Rampant speculation time agogo! Double KIWAMIIIII!
Meanwhile, Chet the Xbox Fanboy needs to play Kiwami 1. How soon should he play it to further is submission to being a Playstation fan?
Ladies and gents, once again it is that time where you are paid for your continuing service as a subscriber. Here, we have the free games given to Xbox Live Gold and PSN Plus members. No fuss, no buss, just brass tacks. Do you want to know what games you are getting? We have them here.
Xbox Live Gold
Battlefield 1 – Did you miss last year’s Battlefield entry? Trying to make the old wars cool again, Battlefield 1 was a breath of fresh air in a series that was starting to lose its way. Featuring a lot of anachronistic weaponry, high concept weapons, and outrageous single player stories, it was a blast. Literally too. Before Battlefield V drops, you have a FREE chance to catch up on all the exciting action from this previous entry. Yes, previous, I know, the numbers make no sense.
Race the Sun – This is a simple yet addicting game where you drive super fast on an endless route. Your goal is to make sure the sun stays on the horizon as you navigate difficult obstacles in your way. The game can be rather brutal with its checkpoint system, but it’s still fun. Free is nice too.
Assassins Creed – The original. The source of it all. One of the most popular franchises in the video game world got its start with this one. It’s a flawed experience with several nags that make it less than excellent. But AC2, of course, improved everything, molding it to what is today. That said, this version of the game is interesting because even though it is a 360 title, it has Xbox One X enhancement, including an improved resolution and texture details. It actually looks relatively good for its age.
Dante’s Inferno – No, not the book. The brawler game. This particular title was noted for some of the crazy publicity stunts EA pulled off during its release. It had a fake religious group protesting it at E3. And they sent a handful of copies to devs with some very bizarre circumstances that were related to the seven deadly sins. In fact, the crazy campaign was more memorable than the actual game was. It’s an okay brawler game.
BulletStorm: Full Clip Edition – This was a fun shooter that EA needlessly made a remaster for and charged full price. It features a game that puts a big focus on making the player get creative with their kills. You get points for killing enemies, but you get more points if you’re creative about it, like in midair, or hitting them with a whip, etc. This game had a unique marketing gimmick where EA released a fake Call of Duty game to advertise for it and HOLY CRAP I’M SEEING A PATTERN HERE. I’m onto you, EA!
Yakuza Kiwami – There’s never been a better time to dive head-first into the amazing Yakuza series. This remaster of the original classic makes the game look like a title that came out recently. It’s the kind of remaster that really put in the effort to make the game look better, rather than just upscaling the resolutions and calling it a day. Looking at you, Shenmue 1 & 2 ‘HD’.
Jackbox Party Pack 2 – The Jackbox games are a collection of party game that, while launched on a console, you actually play on your smartphone with up to 8 friends. The second party pack has two outstanding games that are great. It has Quiplash XL, a game where the player is prompted with a topic and has to come up with a funny response. Literally, the funniest person wins. It also has Fibbage 2, a game where tough and bizarre trivia questions are asked. As the player, you get to submit your own wrong answer, then everyone tries to guess the correct answer. You get points if you make people fall for your fake answer. A total blast at parties and the ease of use is fantastic.
Arkedo Series – This just looks like a series of indie pixel games. Whatever.
Burly Men at Sea – Okay Sony, first Arkedo and now this? What are you even doing?
Roundabout – This is not a song by 70’s prog rock band Yes, but is, in fact, a game where you drive a limo around a map. But the limo is constantly spinning and you have to time your movements to the rotation of the car in order to avoid obstacles. It’s a wacky game that features some fun live action cutscenes. The low budget of this game bleeds through it, and a ton of people gave the game a bad review just because it came out at the turn of a new generation of games and didn’t look stunning.
Nintendo Switch Online
The free virtual NES games this month are:
Mighty Bomb Jack
All consoles have some friggin amazing titles on offer here. Battlefield 1 was a fine game with a very robust campaign, so even if you’re concerned that not many people are playing online, you still have a great single player experience. Race the Sun is a bit low rent, but having the enhanced Assassins Creed is a great piece of gaming history to have on hand. I mean, it literally INVENTED the tower climbing mechanic you see in every game now. It will be especially interesting to see how well it holds up. As far as Dante goes, it didn’t sell that well, but if you are curious as to what you missed out on, nows your chance to peep it.
PS4 has some strong current gen entries. Bulletstorm was also not a big hit and vastly overlooked. In fact, you probably didn’t know that they just randomly added Duke Nukem to the new version. Did you know that? You do now. And after that, Yakuza Kiwami 2 JUST CAME OUT, so it’s a great time to play it. That said, you may find that you don’t have enough time to play the sequel because Yakuza games are big. That said, with the exception of the Jackbox games, the rest of the Sony titles are considerably lackluster, I wouldn’t bother with the last 3 on the list.
NES on Switch, on the other hand, has a major game up its sleeve. The original Metroid is an all-around classic. I personally have never played a SINGLE MetroidVania title. Sad huh? But what better time to start than right now, while it’s free? If it’s free it’s for me right? That is the title of the series after all. The other games? Never heard of them.
Yakuza 6: The Song of Life, is the send-off title for series protagonist Kazuma Kiryu. Developed and published by SEGA, the action-adventure PlayStation 4 exclusive was released on April 17, 2018. Technically the seventh main entry in the series, Yakuza 6 is an open-world adventure with a heartwarming and enchanting story to tell. As well as an incredible story to finish. Set in modern day 2016 (due to localization timing it’s actually two years behind) Yakuza 6 continues the series history of providing a look into Japanese culture and locations. Does Yakuza 6 do the series justice as a closing chapter?
Running on the all-new Dragon engine, Yakuza 6 is one of the most beautiful games of this generation. What makes the game even more beautiful is the transition away from the massive amount of loading screens in previous series entries. The fluidity of the game mixing cinematic moments and gameplay is stunning. The game takes the player to various cities throughout fictional Japan that represent the various environments that represent real Japan. The fictional city of Kamorucho is just as vibrant, commercial filled, and beautiful as the real Tokyo city. The biggest area to appreciate the graphics overall though absolutely goes toward character models. Every major character in the game looks inserted directly from real life. In some moments the facial expressions are so powerful, it was nearly impossible to resist tearing up. Even secondary characters, who obviously receive less attention, looked stellar. Nothing ever falls flat against the background, which makes the world feel truly alive and fully immersive. There may be a few games out there that look better in some areas but very few pull together all the elements in such a glorious way.
The final entry in the adventure of the Dragon of Dojima does an excellent job of bringing this narrative full circle. All the things that are loved and hated about Kazuma Kiryu appear to boost him or attempt to destroy him. His Yakuza past is just as damaging as it is protective of his family at the orphanage. Civilians, Yakuza, and the newly included Triad and Korean gangs all get a sense of the man that has been built over the past 20 years. From start to finish, this game is about how the life and choices of one man can have a larger impact on the world around him. This story shows growth, evolution, and humanity in a world shrouded in darkness. It brings hope for a greater future for everyone by testing the resolve of a man many wish they could be. His lifestyle has made it possible for him to explore things others never could as well as things others never want to. The biggest impact is Kazuma’s commitment to his own rules and regulations. He even comments on it while struggling with an insane decision. This is the type of story that needs to be adapted to other forms of media because it needs to be experienced by that many more people. If this is the final time we see Kazuma Kiryu, the Dragon of Dojima in action the send-off was perfect. Honestly, the story is told so perfectly that even someone who has never played a game in the series before can appreciate it.
It’s always tough to look at voice acting for Japanese voiceover games and give it a solid review because it’s a completely different language. Although the voice acting sounds great, who knows how cheesy it really sounds at home. What really gives this game a strong shine is the way the sound effects of the city pull the world together. Everything happening on screen can be heard and everything that can be heard serves a purpose. Walking past the arcade, the sound of all the games can be heard, just as walking by schoolgirls provides the annoying giggles. Menu sound effects are short and sweet. The one major issue with audio was the lack of any option to alter the levels of dialogue and sound effects. It does, however, have a really cool speaker placement control system. Making sure all the angles of sound and voices are perfect.
The Yakuza series has always been a quirky series filled with outlandish mini-games and Japanese cultural references. Although not as heavily jam-packed with mini-games as some of the later entries, in this case less is more. Batting cages and karaoke return alongside newcomers like gang building and underwater spearfishing. Contrary to the last two non-remake entries’ wide roster of playable characters, The Song of Life is strictly about Kazuma. The gameplay does an excellent job embracing that by also limiting fighting styles that older Kazuma uses to one style he’s mastered over the past two decades. This focused approach makes the game more about character building and really creates a strong relationship between player and antagonist. The quirkiness of the gameplay definitely isn’t for everyone but for those who know what to expect, the surprises are endless.
Yakuza has been a ridiculously fun game from the beginning. Yakuza 6 takes advantage of technological advancements and continues the legacy. Whether playing through the powerful main story or getting involved with a ridiculous side story like “I, Hiji,” putting the control down is hard. The only thing that’s always gotten in the way for many players is the lack of English voice acting. It becomes easy to fall out of the story when cutscenes begin and the reading part ensues. Outside of that everything else that takes place is amazing. Want to hit up an online chat room? Go for it. Want to spend the day chasing and beating up thugs around the city? Go for it. So few things are off limits that it’s really hard to not enjoy the time spent in fictional Japan.And if for whatever reason more excitement is needed, visit any of the Sega arcades and switch to a number of games. Heck, invite a friend over and beat them up in the B version of Virtual Fighter 5 right inside of Yakuza 6. Tell me where this game lacks fun again.
There are maybe a couple dozen video game series and characters that have attempted to bring the story arc to a complete close. There are even fewer spanning a length of time as long as Yakuza. And even less that have done justice to the story that was started. Yakuza 6: The Song of Life is the perfect ending to a story that has been a part of the PlayStation legacy almost as long as the PlayStation itself. Yakuza 6 is fun, unforgettable, and unique. It packages the end of an era with the beginning of the next so well, it leaves nothing but awe-inspiring appreciation.
Vega tells chet:( all about the the cool and exciting, not to mention way-ahead-of-its-time features in Yakuza Kiwami, the HD remaster of the original story of the exciting series. We talk alot about the involvement of the plot, length of missions, and just how interesting the NPCs are. They are very interesting, it turns out. Oh, and stick around past the ending if you wanna hear some bonus conversation that was originally gonna be cut but just comes in after the bumper.
The name brings fear into the hearts of many. This historical hallmark of crime syndicates is the centerpiece of this game. Yakuza Kiwami is the latest title in the popular franchise, but also serves as a remake of the original PS2 game. Released worldwide on August 29, 2017, the remake not only sports updated visuals but also updated gaming mechanics. Developed and published by Sega, Yakuza Kiwami tells the story of a mafia member trying to change the entire system in which the Yakuza work.
One of the most powerful components of Yakuza was its graphical fidelity. Even moreso even on PS2, it looked more stunning than 90% of the games on the market. Yakuza Kiwami keesp the long running series’ history of incredible graphics alive and well. As an official remake it is great to see that no time was wasted and no corners were cut when it came to making sure Tokyo was depicted excellently. Shops in the background pop with just enough vibrancy to coexist with the forefront objects. Emotions can truly be seen in the faces of every character including the useless NPCs on the streets. Cutscenes transition to gameplay incredibly smoothly. Once again Yakuza steps into the market ring and comes out in the top 10%.
Loyalty is one of the most elusive human traits of all time. The Yakuza plot explores this concept at the most extreme levels. The protagonist of the story Kazuma Kiryu takes blame for a murder committed by a close friend. After being curiously expelled from the family and spending 10 years in prison (released on parole for good behavior), Kazuma returns to an all new family that sees him as a threat. One of the strongest selling points of this story is the way that all the side characters feel just as important as the leads. Every conversation held between any set of characters is complimentary to the character development and plot advancement. Very few objectives in the game can be completed without having conversations with multiple side characters and NPCs. The missions that can be completed have bonus rewards or story details that can be found in unnecessary dialogue. A story about what it means to be a loyal member of one of the most deadly organized criminal organizations of all time, this games sits very high on a pedestal of great storytelling.
As an American gamer with interest in Japanese storytelling, the lack of American voiceovers is off-putting for some and perfect for others. The subtitle translation is nearly flawless however. The sound of the city is slightly lacking and in many points can feel lacking and hollow. When the ambience gets it right though, it gets it perfect. The chatting of people on the street corners about the fight that just took place really fills in the liveliness of the world. Overall the sound is nothing to be blown away by but also nothing to shake a finger at in shame.
One thing that has to be addressed is that most Japanese game developers have an obsession with trying to fit in every possible gameplay mechanic in one. Yakuza as a series is no exception. Yakuza Kiwami has taken the original and packed it with all the flavor from the newer games. Mini games are abundant throughout the city, with some even being major components of the narrative. And of course not mentioning the fighting game mechanics would be completely foolish. 4 fighting styles that can be upgraded, and maximized individually, adds a flair to gameplay that is lacking in most other modern day RPGs. Along side the fighting style, ways to go about traveling the city have to be acknowledged as well. One particular mechanic is the inclusion of the follow button. During missions where the player has to blindly follow some other character in the game, holding the R2 button will take care of all the work. There isn’t anything completely out of the ordinary, which can partly be attributed to it being a remake, but Yakuza Kiwami excels excellently at executing the normal exceptionally.
An overwhelming level of RPG elements take the Yakuza games very far from being the Japanese version go Grand Theft Auto. With a slew of different gameplay styles, the complexity of the game may be discouraging to many. Those who find themselves deeply ingrained in the story will enjoy exploring everything it has to offer. The fun factor in this particular series comes from the amount of depth to the Japanese culture that can be explored. as a pick up and play for a few minutes probably not the best option as it is hard to really get anything out of that. However, the game is fun enough to make the 3-4 hours of gameplay required per sitting to get anything done more than worth it.
Yakuza Kiwami has set the standard extremely high for the remake world. Updated visuals put a brand new spark into the entry of an amazing series. Well balanced gameplay and outrageous unique elements keep the game exciting and fun during every session. The most powerful element of the game however is absolutely the story it tells. Loyalty, conviction, self development, and growth are all just a few of the topics that the narrative covers. If Yakuza Kiwami is the beginning of a strong gaming season, it opened the gate with a strong forward kick.
Welcome back for another Lucky Gamer Recap! Now unfortunately this week was kind of dead on the news scene, but I dug deep to bring you the news you deserve. Why? Because, as a fellow Hard Mode Gamer, I care! Also because at this time my life would finish crumbling without something great to look forward to. With that said let’s get right into it!
1. The Final Fantasy Fighting game you never always knew you wanted gets official!
Although originally a PSP game (remember that old thing?) that was ported to arcades in japan, Final Fantasy Dissidia is getting a major overhaul and releasing on PS4. Oh yea bring on the fighting greatness. I loved this game on PSP but hated the lack of a second joystick so thats something I’m really looking forward to. Oh, and I guess it’s important to note it comes out on January 30, 2018.
2. Yakuza 6 comes with whiskey glasses
Ok, so technicallyy not entirely true but still a whiskey stone cold fact. Sega Announced that the Collector’s edition of Yakuza 6 will come with two Whiskey Glasses, two Ice Stones, and two Tojo Clan coasters (Oh my). The collectors edition retails for $89.99, is available preorder now, and releases on March 20, 2018 alongside the standard version. Guess somebody’s getting hammered while playing Yakuza 6.
3. Xbox One X Pre-Order details to be announced at Gamescon
Do you like news about news? Great, well here you go. Microsoft has officially confirmed that the Xbox One X will be partying hard with all the fine folks attending Gamescon 2017 on August 20th. Not much info has really been heard about the “most powerful console ever made” since it waved its no no square at us during E3 but I’m excited to see what else is in store, because I have to assume they aren’t going to take the stage just show me all the places I can buy one. Oh no, would they do that?
4. Shenmue 3 finally has a publisher attached.
This one is actually pretty exciting for me as a kills a few birds with one stone. The first bird is clarifying Sony’s position in this whole mess. Actually I take that back, I have no idea what Sony is doing in this pot. The second bird is clarifying how much of the Kickstarter money was needed and used to actually develop the game. Well, I guess this doesn’t really answer that either. The third bird is proving that this game is actually coming out. Now this one I am super confidant on because the publishing company taking on the task is Deep Silver. Those Deep Silver fellows are the ones who published to incredible games stateside – Persona 5 & Yakuza Kiwami – so i absolutely believe in them. There you have it folks, three birds one stone.
5. Crackdown 3 delayed!?
One of the most anticipated games of this console generation has been delayed, again. Microsoft announced that Crackdown 3, originally planned for November 7th release, has been pushed backed to “Spring 2018”. That is a major disappointment for people who were really looking forward to an exclusive title for their new Xbox One X. They cited the reason as “needing more time in the oven”. Who do they think they are fooling? I know games aren’t baked in ovens, they are created in deep fryers. Oh well, I guess we’ll just have to find other amazing games to play this year.
6. The Good Life: A Swery Game
The developer behind one of the most cult classic cult classics of all time (Deadly Premonition, if you didn’t know what I was talking about you proved my pint) is at it again with a brand new game. Not only is this a new game but it has a title inspired by one of my favorite Kanye West tracks of all time. The Good Life is a mystery RPG that appears to be in line with the developers history of being completely weird. Just to some things up briefly: You play as a girl named Naomi who lives in a town where everyone turns into a cat at night. Your move Kojima.
7. Quake Champions Early Access begins soon.
How soon? Well it actually begin next Tuesday August 22nd. Early access will cost you a warm fee of $30 exactly $10 cheaper than waiting for the games full release some day in 2018. I’m not entirely behind this whole “Pay for the demo” concept but for those of you who are, prime opportunity to get the edge on your competition. Oh and I guess it’s worth mentioning along with your demo purchase you will receive exclusive loot chest, skins, and a “guarantee” that at least six new champions will be released between now and the end of 2018. Yea, nope, still not paying for a demo.