It’s Official, Yakuza 3 In March 2010

By Spencer . December 8, 2009 . 8:46am


Sega announced on the PlayStation Blog they will be releasing Yakuza 3 outside of Japan. The localized version will be done Yakuza 2 style, that is Japanese voiceovers and English subtitles.


The game will be available in March 2010, but the post didn’t say if it will be a retail release or as a digital download like a proposed Sega memo mentioned. So many details to clarify, but one thing for sure is we’re getting Yakuza 3.

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  • Eddie

    Words can not express how happy I am.

  • nyobzoo04

    Great News

  • badmoogle

    Today is a glorious day!:D

  • Simon

    OMG happiest news ever

  • Kris

    I’m so happy right now!

  • neo_firenze

    Forgive me for not being as completely overjoyed as the previous commenters… I’m troubled that by releasing in March, Sega is essentially throwing Yakuza 3 in the ocean with lead weights strapped to its ankles. They’re dooming it to underperforming relative to its potential by releasing it in a stacked month in the US:

    * Final Fantasy XIII
    * Resonance of Fate
    * Monster Hunter 3
    * God of War III
    * Super Street Fighter IV
    * Resident Evil 5 Gold
    * Lost Planet 2 (currently on track for the last week of February)

    Even the more niche stuff that will probably compete with Yakuza 3 for a lot of the Japanophile crowd:
    * Fragile
    * Sakura Wars
    * SMT: Strange Journey
    * Infinite Space (Gamestop currently lists it as a March release, though I’ve seen nothing else to back that up yet)

    I’ll still buy Yakuza 3 on day 1, but its US sales are likely to be scrutinized quite closely by Sega in considering whether to localize other games in the series. I’m concerned that by releasing it in such a heavy month, Yakuza 3 will not perform as well as it could and Sega may pass on localizing the amazing looking Yakuza 4. I’m already preparing myself for the possibility that I’ll have to slog through the Japanese version of that game with the best guides I can find and my rudimentary Japanese (just like I did with Kenzan!)

    • superdry

      Considering the poor sales of Yakuza 2, I still think there might be a possibility, that Yakuza 4 can be released if 3 doesn’t too that great.This is great news though. Now, I just hope for the ever so slight possibility of the great 428: Fuusa Sareta Shibuya de being localized, but I think that is highly unlikely considering the lack of a market for visual adventure games in the US.

    • Simon

      I think SEGA probably targeted this to people who were complaining online and wanting this game come to the US.. whatever sold on top is extra.. so having it in march is great for fans of the series

      • neo_firenze

        I disagree that this release is solely a response to online complaints in the first place. Since when did Sega really listen to the community?

        But that aside, even if we take your rationale as truth I don’t think it’s great for fans of the SERIES to have Yakuza 3 in March. It’s great for people who want to play Yazuka 3 (the single game), but it’s shortsighted because weak performance will severely hurt our chances of getting Yakuza 4.

        I personally want the outcome that results in getting both Yakuza 3 AND 4 (and the potential new sequels, or even the unlikely chance of Kenzan! coming to the US). Many of the people who are cheering today are going to be the same people bitching in a year when Yakuza 4’s chances of localization are up in the air. And many of the people who were bitching about wanting Yakuza 3 are going to push it to the back burner and not pick it up at release when they can’t afford all the games they want in March and Yakuza ends up as priority #3 or 4 (which Sega will rightfully only interpret as “complaining on the internet doesn’t equal sales”).

        As for Yakuza 2 sales, you can make an argument that they were weak due to the “core gamers” not buying many new PS2 games at the time Yakuza 2 released. The demographic had largely moved on to PS3/360. Maybe that’s the reason Yakuza 2 didn’t perform better, maybe it isn’t – but it’s plausible.

        Yakuza 3 will not have that luxury. If it does badly, there’s no excuse – there are plenty of PS3 owners now, and especially with the recent price drop and the strong holiday sales, there’s going to be a strong user base out there in March. In fact, that’s one reason I think it was SMART to hold out on a Yakuza 3 port this long – PS3 just didn’t have quite enough people to make it as easy to take the risk of releasing a somewhat niche 3rd party platform exclusive game. Now it’s a much healthier environment for such a game.

        But I’d still prefer it in January with less competition out, or in April-May after the March slugfest winds down and people start looking for something new again.

        • badmoogle

          “But that aside, even if we take your rationale as truth I don’t think it’s great for fans of the SERIES to have Yakuza 3 in March. It’s great for people who want to play Yazuka 3 (the single game), but it’s shortsighted because weak performance will severely hurt our chances of getting Yakuza 4”

          I was hearing the same doom & gloom talk from people referring at Yakuza’s 2 lackluster sales in the west.They were saying “Yakuza 2 sold terrible,we’ll never see Yakuza 3 here.”Yet here we are,drooling over the news that Y3 will finally come in the west.Sega is primarily targeting the game’s loyal fanbase and secondly they will try to get as many new people as possible.Yakuza 3 was destined to underperform anyway (when you compare it with other high marketing titles) regardless of the release month.This means that Sega is comfortable with the sales they are expecting and they are basically investing for the future in making the franchise more and more recognizable in the west.This is something that takes time,lots of patience and lots of hard work.The success of the franchise here is going to be a long term endeavor.

    • Aoshi00

      I definitely see your point, I take a look on my Amazon pre-order list and it even scares me. I have never pre-ordered so many games during the same period before.. Q1 2010 is nuts… That’s Heavy Rain too.. that’s only so many games one could buy.

      Well, it’s selfish to say this, but localization isn’t really my problem since I can read Jpn, I just didn’t import because I’m cheap.. but playing it in English is still better.

      OT: I got the Asus 23″ you recommended, has a stuck blue pixel on the right.. I’m trying to flash it now, if it doesn’t work, need to exchange, such a pain…

      • neo_firenze

        “OT: I got the Asus 23″ you recommended, has a stuck blue pixel on the right.. I’m trying to flash it now, if it doesn’t work, need to exchange, such a pain…”

        Noooooo ; ; Sorry to hear that, one of the bad things about LCD screens. Loving mine, I hope you end up enjoying yours just as much once you get past this pixel problem. And I hope one of the things you’ll be enjoying on it is Mushihimesama Futari :)

        Back to Yakuza though, I really don’t trust Sega of America much at all recently. They’re perfectly content to not localize 7th Dragon, or even Shining Force Feather – a game that has the weight of a well known franchise name attached. They passed on the first PS3 Ryu ga Gotoku game (Kenzan!). They made the Yakuza 2 release one big drama. They handled the Valkyria Chronicles US release in a pretty sloppy manner. But hey, they don’t mind lousy Sonic cash-ins or movie tie-in games.

        And I do think Yakuza 2 is fundamentally different than 3. There’s a reasonable argument that any lackluster sales numbers for that game are more due to being on a system that was being abandoned by the game’s target audience in the west (not sure I buy that 100%, but it’s not a ridiculous premise). Yakuza 4 has a LOT more in common with 3, and if Sega behaves logically they’ll pay close attention to 3’s performance to decide on future localizations of the series. If you’re someone who wants the series to continue to get translated, wouldn’t you want 3 to perform as well as possible? I’m not saying there’s no chance of 4, but releasing 3 in the midst of such a flood of games that largely appeal to the same audience Yakuza doesn’t sound like it helps a lot, does it?

        • Aoshi00

          Releasing in the same month against a dozen of heavy hitters in March spells trouble indeed. I think the Yakuza 2 argument is somewhat true, people have alrdy moved on to next gen, frankly I found it hard to play since it just looked bad on a HDTV. So I don’t know why Sega chose such a time.. I tried the Kenzan demo only but it was very fun.

          Yeah, sometimes you have to be lucky w/ LCD.. even a PSP screen. I tried the flashing and rubbing, seems like it would go away for a bit but come back. I alrdy asked Amazon to send me a replacement, problem is it’s not in stock now so I don’t know how long I need to wait. And the stand just came too and I can’t install in it.. other than the stupid menu buttons, it’s a great looking monitor. Enjoying Mushi alrdy w/ the HRAP SE stick, I just blew it up to 107% on my big TV for the time being, very awesome! Now that’s the only way to play shmups for me, once you go fresh you can’t go back to canned haha.

        • Aoshi00

          Hey, I got a replacement and its dead pixel free, but now I ran into another problem. I go the adjustable stand, but how do I take off the stand on the back of the monitor? Not the piece of base that you attach to the bottom. The screws are blocked by the stand and I can’t figure out for the life of me how to take it off. That peice can come off right? I don’t want to use the a pair of pliers to risk stripping out the screws’ edges. Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

  • [The Hunter] Doomrider

    Sweet. But… I’m not so sure I would want to download it, it must be huge…. I would be bitching if I made a comment about how much I want Vesperia PS3 to come out in Europe/US too, wouldn’t I?Oh,I just did… I’ll just… shut up now

    • thebanditking

      Your not bitching, Bamco has been a big let down this gen so far for me and is fast approaching the top of my “least favorite developers” list, as no one has under achieved quite like them. Still to hell with Bamco, Yakuza 3 is finally coming!

      • kupomogli

        Add me to the list of both a previous Namco and Bandai fan only to be screwed over with so many games the last half of the last generation and nearly every good niche game this generation.The two companies hardly released anything in the US prior to merging, now they release even less. Oh wait. Soul Calibur, Tekken, Naruto, stuff that’s guaranteed to sell and cheap to localize. But Tales of the World Radiant Mythology 2, Tales of VS, Tales of Vesperia, any good Gundam which could have been literally any of them except the ones they released(Target in Sight/Crossfire and Musuo 1/2.) They hate us in the US. I honestly think that.

        I already sold my 360 a long time ago, I don’t want to pick another up when nearly every game I want is either on the PS3 or multiconsole.

  • seishuun

    Hell yes! Finally! Sega would of had so many more sales of this game if they announced this earlier though…

  • Chow

    Me and my backlog of games. ><
    I'm only about 80% of the way through Yakuza, and stopped playing it years ago to tend to other games.
    I have Yakuza 2, but haven't opened it yet, and I'm already seeing the effects of playing Standard Def games on an HD TV after playing HD games.

    • Aoshi00

      I hear you, playing SD games on HD TVs look horrible, unless it’s really good looking games like MGS3 or FF12 upscaled on the PS3, they still look amazing. I too had that problem w/ Yakuza 2, it didn’t look all that great on the PS3. I never played the first game though, just watched the recap in the 2nd game, and stopped at Chapter 8 (again, blame in on the graphics..)

      • Kris

        Please, both of you, try to finish Yakuza 2. It’s a ton of fun, but you do get a bit distracted from the main game with all of the sidequests and host club minigames.

        • Aoshi00

          lol, will do, sir! I actually stopped at the part where I interviewed to be a host. I hope that censor thing is plain rumor since it was in Yakuza 2 like you said. You know people say March is cramped w/ tons of releases, what if it’s Shenmue 3 instead of Yakuza 3, I wonder how it would fare. I would buy 2 copies of Shenmue 3!BTW, I’m almost done right? That pole guy boss at the TV station gave me a hell of a time.

          • Kris

            You’re about half way. Being a host is a lot of fun, as is managing your own host club (even if they are difficult). The pole guy is a pain, but now that he’s out of the way, I can’t remember too many super-annoying fights…
            Keep going! You can do it!

  • Xeahnort

    unfortunately, Its going to be censored, with the host/Hostess management part removed.

    • That’s rather depressing. That part actually sounded unique and interesting.

    • Aoshi00

      Are you serious? When I saw the article I was like “yes, thank god I held out that long not importing”… now I’m not sure if I want it if it is indeed censored.

    • That _is_ a downer. But maybe this will only be cut from the European version? Ah, who am I kidding…

    • Kris

      Bullshit. Acting as a host and running the hostess club was in Y2, I see no reason to censor it now. Also, that news in months old, before Yakuza 3 was even confirmed. I’d file it under “rumor” for now.

    • If they are doing this for the community asking for Yakuza games in the West, why would they do this? Its one of the special things in the game that make us fans of it. Total BS right here.
      I did import it, and if this is true, I might not double dip. I’m about 3/4 done the game too.

  • thebanditking

    This is awesome! Its not awesome for my wallet during March but this really made my day not suck (hell makes up for a lot of crappy days this year). Thank you Sega! FF13, Resident Evil Gold, Super Street Fighter and now finally Yakuza 3 shall be mine!

    Not even Spencers sour note of an only digital release can ruin my good mood. Though Sega has place holder box art up on their website in addition to the early Amazon leak so signs are pointing to a disc release, which is 100% necessary for me to buy this as I do not support digital downloads.

  • thaKingRocka

    Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus … but he won’t be here until March, so you might as well go to sleep and leave those cookies for me.

  • it better be retail damn it! or else I’ll be angry!

  • thebanditking

    Retail release pretty much confirmed, over on the Euro PS blog comments about the package art and retailer pricing were mentioned by Matin Snelling who I believe works for Sega Europe. Comments below.

    Posted on 8 December, 2009 at 4:35 pm by Martin Snelling
    Hi Aphiss – no word on pricing at the moment; however retailers tend to set their own prices so do shop around for the best deals.

    Posted on 8 December, 2009 at 4:58 pm by asop89
    Can’t wait for it
    When are we going to see the final boxart for the game????

    Posted on 8 December, 2009 at 5:02 pm by Martin Snelling
    All in good time

    • I’ll keep good faith, although the mock boxart has Playstation Network on top-right hand corner on the officail Sega site:

      Unless this is the same deal as with Agarest War…

  • kupomogli

    I’m picking this up btw.

  • daizyujin

    God I hope this gets a retail release. The systems of this generation were never meant to hold games this size, let alone multiple games this size. Besides, with the cost of translation, I would think a digital release would severely limit the title’s potential. Online sales on consoles still don’t touch retail sales of physical product.

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