Yakuza 0 Review Roundup

Here's what the critics are saying.

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The long-awaited western release of Yakuza 0 is just days away, and the first reviews have begun to arrive.

Yakuza 0 is a prequel to the long-running action series, making it an ideal place for newcomers to jump in. It was originally released in Japan, where the franchise has proven more popular, way back in early 2015. Only the PS4 version is coming to the West; its PS3 version remains Japan-only, and Sega has said it doesn't have plans for a PC version. More games are also on the way, with Yakuza 6 and a remake of the original Yakuza in development.

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Digital and physical copies of Yakuza 0 will be available when the game launches next week. Those who preorder the digital version also receive a static PS4 theme, while preordered and first-run copies of the physical edition come in the form of the special Business edition. This comes with a stainless steel business card holder and business cards for three characters.

We've excerpted a handful of Yakuza 0 reviews for you below. Head over to GameSpot sister site Metacritic for more.

  • Game: Yakuza 0
  • Developer: Sega
  • Platform: PS4
  • Release Date: January 24
  • Price: $60

GameSpot -- 8/10

"Were it not for the wealth of activities and side stories available around every corner, Zero would still be a riveting game for its story alone. It does a fantastic job of pulling you into the plight of its main characters and holds your attention through every step of their winding journeys. But, when you take in everything the game has to offer, Zero becomes something special. Yes, its presentation leaves a lot to be desired at times and the fights aren't always as engaging as they could be, but the rest of the game is incredibly diverse and engaging. The sheer amount of activities at your fingertips would feel overwhelming if they weren't so inviting--you're never pressured to do one thing or another." -- Peter Brown [Full review]

Polygon -- 8/10

"The problem with tough guy heroes isn't that they're done too often, it's that they're so rarely done well. In that regard, Yakuza 0 felt like a revelation--even in spite of some significant shortcomings. It keeps a consistent, strong pace, and it doesn't meander through side streets you'd rather avoid. But more importantly, it's just so damned cool. It's vicious and grand, but bears its heart and soul. It has fun without completely sacrificing its gravitas. And with Yakuza Kiwami (the remake of the first game) due out later this year, Yakuza 0 might be the perfect jumping-on point for those who have been put off by the density and complexity of the series up until now." -- Janine Hawkins [Full review]

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The Jimquisition -- 9.5/10

"My first impressions were not completely positive. A graphically basic game, full of restricted pathways and a slow-moving story, I honestly wondered what the big deal was about the beloved Yakuza games. Once things started opening up, however, the game revealed its allure to me. With every ridiculously overblown fight sequence, every bizarre side quest, I fell in love with Yakuza 0 more and more. Now I'm angry nobody told me to jump on this train sooner." -- Jim Sterling [Full review]

Push Square -- 8/10

"At this point, the property's trademark formula is seriously starting to wear thin, but when it comes down to it, there's nothing quite like Yakuza 0. It combines unapologetically mature themes and violence with brilliantly dumb minigames and hysterical side quests, resulting in a thoroughly memorable experience. Bolstered by a gripping story that's packed with great characters, fans of Japanese games or even Japanese culture owe it to themselves to give this a prequel a shot. Yakuza 0 is fantastic place to start a love affair with Kamurocho's finest, and what's more, it's one of the best entries in the series to date." -- Robert Ramsey [Full review]

IGN -- 8.5/10

"Yakuza 0 is another sprawling entry in the open-world series, packed with an extraordinary amount of things to do and centered around a genuinely compelling crime story. Since it's a prequel, it's also unburdened by the series' increasingly intricate backstory and thus far more approachable for newcomers than the last few Yakuza games. While its melee combat may lag slightly behind modern genre standards, Yakuza 0 still hits far more than it misses and is a big, bold, and bruising tour through the Japanese underworld." -- Tristan Ogilvie [Full review]

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Avatar image for louixiii

Another great exclusive with plenty of great reviews :)

Avatar image for killercondoms

Probably won't buy it but will def be renting it.

Avatar image for cherub1000

Hmm, ok. Don't know much about the series but after the dissapointing Mafia 3, thus could be a great alternative!?

Avatar image for iohannfus2015

Peter "Eight" Brown strike again ... the battle goes on !!!

Avatar image for HisDudeness28

Serious question: is this on any other platform than PS4?

Avatar image for girlusocrazy

@HisDudeness28: This is a Japanese PS3 game brought to PS4 in the west. So, it's on PS3 in Japan.

Avatar image for HisDudeness28

@girlusocrazy: I see. So basically not on PC or X1. I've played the one that was given for free on PS+ about a year ago and I liked it, but I never finished it because I've moved on to PS4 and I just don't play on my PS3 anymore. I'm probably getting this.

Avatar image for girlusocrazy

@HisDudeness28: No this has been a PlayStation franchise since the PS2. I want this too!

Avatar image for darksouls

Looks good, ill have to pick it up soon.

Avatar image for deactivated-5893d17ed65b4

Solid reviews. Another great game to add to The Last Guardian and Gravity Rush 2, with Tales, Digimon, Kingdom Hearts, Nioh, Berserk, and Horizon all launching by the end of February.

Then Nier, Danganronpa 1 & 2, more Kingdom Hearts, The Show 17, Persona 5, and Dragon Quest Heroes II all come in March and April.

A lot of Japanese games to be sure, but if they're the quality of the Japanese games above with the 9/9/8 GameSpot reviews...I say bring it!

Avatar image for girlusocrazy

It looks pretty good, can't help but get amped when watching videos of this game, great action scenes and ultraviolent, you're beating on assholes you love to hate and cash money raining down even more than the blood

Avatar image for deactivated-5c0b07b32bf03

Looks like another classic for the PS4 library. Sony's killing it so far in 2017.

Avatar image for moose-fitz

@reduc_ab_: I've missed your raging fanboy posts.

Avatar image for deactivated-5c0b07b32bf03

@moose-fitz: Awwwwww.

Avatar image for sladakrobot

@reduc_ab_: its a sega game.

The ps4 is killing it would be correct

Avatar image for deactivated-5c0b07b32bf03

@sladakrobot: Sony is killing it. The PS4 is killing it. Get over it.

Avatar image for sladakrobot

@reduc_ab_: if you feel better :)

Avatar image for deactivated-5c0b07b32bf03

@sladakrobot: Have a beautiful day!

Avatar image for uncle5555

I own them all but usually wait to buy them. Is it bad I preordered this solely because of the awesome business card holder. I just had to have it. lol

Avatar image for sladakrobot

Nice...played Yakuza games on my Ps2 and Ps3,good to hear that Sega kept the quality of the series

Avatar image for ghost140

@sladakrobot: Sega not being a screwup...nice change of pace to be honest.

Avatar image for sladakrobot

@ghost140: luckily they only tend to screw up Sonic

Avatar image for suicidesn0wman

Looking forward to trying this game out. They need to bring out an HD collection of the first 3 or 4 games though, too damn expensive to buy Yakuza 2 for most people.

Avatar image for wtf_666

*Confirmed for Switch.


Avatar image for darksouls

@wtf_666: That gave me a good chuckle. Switch jokes never get old haha