Japan Review Check: Yakuza 5, Paper Mario 3DS

A recap of the most interesting games coming out soon in Japan, courtesy of the reviews section in the latest issue of Famitsu magazine. There are only two games coming out next week over there (and Famitsu hasn't printed their Wii U reviews yet), but they're two big ones:

- Yakuza 5 (10/10/10/10, 40 out of 40 points): The first game in this holiday season to earn a perfect score from Famitsu's reviewers, although a lot of other titles (including nearly all of this year's big-budget Western-developed titles) came pretty close.

"In all aspects, this game has powered itself up from previous ones in the series," one editor wrote. "There's a ton of volume, and the storyline is excellent, especially the 'Another Drama' feature that lets you enjoy the plot even further. All the sidetracking you wind up doing is so much fun, you don't know when to stop."

Yakuza 5 may not have the hype of a Grand Theft Auto, but it's definitely at that level in Japan, in part because it's kept a consistent, chronological story going across the entire series, including spinoffs. "Yakuza 5 really is the culmination of everything the series has accomplished up to now," another editor put it. "The story is getting pretty deep, too, what with Haruka (a child in the first game) now all grown up. Fans should get it, of course, but I think this is a game I'd want anyone with a PS3 to play."

Another reason Japanese gamers go nuts for the series: Much like how the Liberty City of GTA4 was filled with little details and stuff that only New Yorkers would pick up on, Yakuza's depiction of the red-light districts of assorted Japanese cities is getting seriously realistic. "The amount of attention paid to detail in making the assorted pleasure districts you're going around is worth noting," Famitsu said. "There are a lot of shops you'll know the name of or even pass by in real life, so just snooping around is a lot of fun. There are tons of sub-events and minigames as well, and really, I give this a huge recommendation!"

- Paper Mario: Sticker Star (9/9/9/9, 36 points): This game doesn't have the hype of Yakuza in Japan, but it's still a well-made RPG, Famitsu says. "The unique characters are still there," one reviewer began, "not to mention the sort of dialogue that you really only get in the Paper Mario series. The new sticker aspect is fun since it's used in all sorts of different ways, from attacks to solving puzzles. The graphics, being that mix of 2D and 3D, are well-suited for the system and fun to look at."

"Sticker Star is a game I have no problem with recommending," added another. "Whoever came up with the idea of bringing stickers into a world made out of paper is brilliant, because not only did it result in some neat new features; it expanded on what makes the game fun. The unique characters that have been part of the series as a whole are still as charming as ever, too."

More from Polygon

The horror of Five Nights at Freddy's

  • Dark Souls 2: Crown of the Old Iron King Overview

  • Spacecom: a fast 4X built for multiplayer

  • Pillars of Eternity builds on role-playing classics

  • Tour the 1 KB hard drive built inside Minecraft

Latest Discussions

X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Please choose a new Polygon username and password

As part of the new Polygon launch, prior users will need to choose a permanent username, along with a new password.

Your username will be used to login to Polygon going forward.

I already have a Vox Media account!

Verify Vox Media account

Please login to your Vox Media account. This account will be linked to your previously existing Eater account.

Please choose a new Polygon username and password

As part of the new Polygon launch, prior MT authors will need to choose a new username and password.

Your username will be used to login to Polygon going forward.

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.
Spinner.vc97ec6e

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.

tracking_pixel_5353_tracker