Yakuza Of The End Quick Impressions
The Yakuza series has never been successful outside of Japan, heck the game takes place in Japan and has many intricacies that wouldn’t appeal to many American gamers. When I heard that Yakuza was breaking away from it’s traditional action packed beat em up style to zombie shooter, I instantly thought Sega was trying to appeal to a wider US audience this time around by drastically changing the game’s core mechanics. I was wrong, but it’s still a blast to play.
Is it really that different than previous Yakuzas? Not really. Well other than the fact that you’re fighting zombies. The core gameplay still remains fairly similar. You run around town and encounter “random (although visable)” enemies and are seemlessly warped into a limited area which you can reek havoc on your zombie friends. The game does open more by having Akiyama run though a linear path while fighting waves of zombies, but this is nothing new to the Yakuza series. Heat actions return as well albeit slightly different. You use heat to shoot barrels and object to set off explosions, trigger small event scenes, or even triggering partner attacks.
The game’s controls could use some work however, as I found myself constantly battling with them to position the camera and aimimg for headshots. I know very little Japanese, but some of the skills you can update your character with seem to allow for better aiming accuracy, but I could be wrong. Despite the loose controls, I still managed to beat the demo several times.
Of the End does pay homage to other popular zombies games by having different zombie types a la Left 4 Dead’s boomer, charger, tank, etc. The depth and inventory options return this time around, allowing you to carry tons of different kinds items and weapons as well as a wide arrange of skills for your characters to learn. Nothing has changed here, still a Yakuza game at it’s heart which isn’t a bad thing.
Let’s hope that Sega decides to bring this gem over to America. Even though it’s use of zombies could potentially scare off some hardcore fans, they shouldn’t worry as the core gameplay remains perfectly intact. I can’t imagine how fun this would be online with some friends. Step aside Left 4 Dead.