The main story follows Kazuma Kiryu, a former yakuza whose release from prison after a ten-year sentence sparks the setup of the game's plot. After his release, he returns to find his friend Yumi Sawamura is missing and the Tojo Clan he was once a part of has had ten billion yen stolen from them, which the entire Japanese underworld is now searching for. It's up to Kazuma to investigate on what happened and make a few friends along the way.
Gameplay: With Yakuza being an action game it also has a few RPG mix-elements after fighting waves of enemies throughout the game, you'll gain Exp points which can be used to upgrade your health, strength and learn new fighting abilities. During battles you'll be using Square and Triangle for punching and kicking or you can use the circle button to grab enemies up close or pick up any objects you see like a cone or a bicycle to do some damage at enemies.
If you see a blue gauge on the top left above your health that is where you can pull some critictal damage if you see a red fist on the screen you can do some critical damage to them.
What might annoy a few gamers out there is that there is no target-lock where you can't seem to lock-on to enemies this can be a little annoying as you try to move the analog stick move and you're trying to attack but this isn't really problem in the game but can get a little annoying at certain moments.
Apart from fighting you'll be going back and forth through the streets of Kamurocho in Tokyo either finding where you need to go next but half the time it can feel a little repetitive as you have to go to the top half of the map and you're at the bottom end; but however there are taxi's which you can pay a small amount to get from one end of the city.
Graphics and Sound: If you've played Yakuza 3 and 4 for the Playstation 3 you can tell straight away graphics have totally from the art, animation and how much has changed from the first game. The environments through Kamurocho are pretty impressive for a big city in Tokyo and of course how much effort Sega has putting in for it. Even its battles are pretty impressive as you see enemies get beaten, with plenty of blood and violence to keep you playing for more.
What you'll find annoying throughout Yakuza is the camera which can really be annoying as you progress through or trying to get to an area where everything is completely cramped in all at once. The soundtrack is nicely done with a variety of dramatic music and up beat music through battles and boss battles.
There is no option to change the voice acting from English to Japanese which you would have to play through in English. Its line-up on voice is pretty decent you've got voice actors like Darryl Kurrylo, Rachael Leigh Cook, Mark Hamill, and Bill Farmer, but too be honest I found the voice acting a little weak.
Overall: If you didn't get the chance to play through Yakuza from now it's quite easy finding this game cheap at certain places. Beating through the main story can take you at least 12-15 hours or more pending on how much side-quests you want to do in your time.
If you find playing through the game hard if you die a few times you've got the option to change the difficulty on easy if you wanted to. I would recommend the series to anyone who still owns a PS2 or never played the series in general.