Yakuza 6: The Song of Life
I have to admit to not quite knowing what I was getting myself into when I said yes to the offer of a review copy of Yakuza 6: The Song of Life, because I’ve never played any of the previous titles in the series. But an open world Japanese Mob game sounded like it would be fun, so I dove right on in.
Of course not having much experience with Japanese games, the lengthy cut scenes and focus on storytelling felt a bit jarring to a jump right in and kill things type of gamer, but I decided to give Yakuza 6: The Song of Life a decent go.
The game looks and plays well, and the city is quite big. The first issue that I noticed is that despite all the people, the city fells pretty empty with not much to do other than go here and do this, go here and do that. A pretty linear set up for an open world game. The other big thing is that the city is full of roaming gangs, so on route from point A to point B, you’re likely going to have to beat up a couple of different gangs, which gets boring real quick.
A little later on in the game, option side quests start to pop up, but the game never really seems to get away from the feeling of being a linear experience in an open world setting. There doesn’t seem to be any reasons to go exploring the world, nothing to collect or discover.
But as I said at the start, I’m a jump right in guy trying to navigate a game that desperate wants to tell a story, and in the end, these two approaches just don’t play well together.
Yakuza 6: The Song of Life isn’t a bad game, it’s just not a game I could happily come to grips with, which means it may not get the star rating it possibly deserves.
Rating: R18 Restricted to persons 18 years and over.