Yakuza 5 Devs Have No Plans For Western Release

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Yakuza 5 Devs Have No Plans For Western Release

While there are no immediate plans for a Yakuza 5 localization, creator Toshihiro Nagoshi would love to see it localized "someday".

At this year's Tokyo Game Show, Yakuza spin-off Ryu Ga Gotoku: Isshin was quite possibly the most popular non-western game on display. But despite its immediate popularity, and the general popularity other Yakuza games have seen in the west, the chances of it, and the previously released Yakuza 5 getting an English localization is pretty low.

When asked if he had plans to localize Yakuza 5 for the West, series creator Toshihiro Nagoshi said, "We don't have a plan for that at the moment. The Yakuza Studio team is a fixed size, and we have to choose between forging ahead with the next game or localising the one that just came out." He said that he chose to forge ahead with Isshin rather than localize Yakuza 5, which doesn't bode well for English speaking fans of either game.

But, he didn't entirely rule out a future localization of his games, stating "I'd definitely love to reach the whole world [with Yakzua 5], haha, if we have the manpower and the money to do it."

Nagoshi was asked why he thinks there are so many western fans of the Yakuza series, to which he replied: "I think they're the kind of enthusiasts who like to experience something new. I don't think it's necessarily because they're interested in Japan; the games have such a mix of essences, even to a Japanese player, and I think it's that mix that appeals to people overseas. It's not that they like the content or the battle system or the drama; it's the mixed-up street-festival atmosphere that grabs them."

Thankfully, the PS4 doesn't have any kind of region-locking, so if you want to play Ryu Ga Gotoku: Isshin on it's release but don't live in Japan, time to hit up an import site and get yourself a phrasebook!

Source: Edge Online

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Is it time to worry about Atlus being bought by Sega Sammy now?

The team that makes the game is the same one that localizes it? Let a fan do it for free or something, you know people would line up to do it.

Wasted money and upset fans for no reason.

Also,

its intimidate popularity

More powerful than intimate, it's intimidate.

Sigh, I might have to learn Japanese eventually...

Yeah? And pray tell us, what excuse did you make up to justify not bringing Yakuza 1 & 2 HD to the West, given that those two games already have the translation?

Berny Marcus:
Is it time to worry about Atlus being bought by Sega Sammy now?

no since there isn't any signs of a fire just yet

mysecondlife:
Sigh, I might have to learn Japanese eventually...

you might as well learn it if you can anyway since we're missing out on some other games

But.. I really..

Gotta go learn japanese now..

I really wanted this! >_< I love the Yakuza series.. And was looking forward to the idol aspect as well.

Damn it!

That actually makes me sad. Yakuza 3 and 4 were among my favourite games of this generation. Yakuza 5 looks fantastic, i can't imagine why they don't localize it.

Literally finished Yakuza 3 just the other day, so I was looking forward to this. Disappointing news, indeed.

I love the Yakuza games, Yakuza 4 is actually one of my top games of 2011.

The game should stick with Japanese audio with English subtitles, that's always been the better approach with the Yakuza games and they shouldn't change that now.

Eh and consider they use the same city for the past 4 games to ;p.

Get off your butts and do the damn localization. I bought project diva to support them.

Why would the Yakuza devs be doing the localization?

Berny Marcus:
Is it time to worry about Atlus being bought by Sega Sammy now?

No, because Sega and Atlus are pretty much self-managing under their parent company. Also because Yakuza likely cost a lot more money to make these days than most of what Atlus is making.

I do wish we would one of the Ryu Ga Gotoku spinoffs for once though, Way of the Samurai is more or less the same concept but on a lower budget and that's been successful enough to get three sequels launched stateside.

Cybylt:

Berny Marcus:
Is it time to worry about Atlus being bought by Sega Sammy now?

No, because Sega and Atlus are pretty much self-managing under their parent company. Also because Yakuza likely cost a lot more money to make these days than most of what Atlus is making.

I do wish we would one of the Ryu Ga Gotoku spinoffs for once though, Way of the Samurai is more or less the same concept but on a lower budget and that's been successful enough to get three sequels launched stateside.

Sega owns ATLUS, not just SEGA Sammy. Sammy put ATLUS under the SEGA everyone means control when they bought them.

Wasn't the four previous Yakuza games extremely unprofitable in the west? If they don't make the money back from localization, its surprising they kept localizing the series.

Rainbow_Dashtruction:
Wasn't the four previous Yakuza games extremely unprofitable in the west? If they don't make the money back from localization, its surprising they kept localizing the series.

They don't spend a whole lot on localization though, at most its simply just adjusting the text to fit the size constraints of the boxes it goes into after it's translated. Voice Acting tends to be the big cost item when doing these things, which Sega hasn't been doing since Yakuza 1 (or 2, if I'm wrong about 1 being the only game with English voices).

It sells well enough though, specially if you're claiming all 4 sold badly, to warrant releases up to Yakuza 4 and the Dead Souls spinoff. It just sounds like the devs (or Sega), doesn't feel like bringing in any additional developers to handle translating and localizing the game. And in that case, they should just hand it over to Atlus to handle that. I mean hell, it's not like they have to pay them more now to do so or anything.

Rainbow_Dashtruction:

Cybylt:

Berny Marcus:
Is it time to worry about Atlus being bought by Sega Sammy now?

No, because Sega and Atlus are pretty much self-managing under their parent company. Also because Yakuza likely cost a lot more money to make these days than most of what Atlus is making.

I do wish we would one of the Ryu Ga Gotoku spinoffs for once though, Way of the Samurai is more or less the same concept but on a lower budget and that's been successful enough to get three sequels launched stateside.

Sega owns ATLUS, not just SEGA Sammy. Sammy put ATLUS under the SEGA everyone means control when they bought them.

As a subsidiary now called Sega Dream, meaning the Atlus guys who were in charge under Index management are the very same guys in charge under Sega. No real change going on in the end and no real oversight or direct management on the part of Sega. Just stocks.

I have actively tried to enjoy the latest Yakuza titles... but the fricken cutscenes are way too long. These dev's need to learn the benefits of cutting content so that players don't get bored and turn off the game. I really don't wanna play another game where I can make a sandwich, eat it, wash hands and still have to wait out the cutscene/animation... (the first time it happened was a quadra-magic counter Master Summon Knights of the Round cast in FF7, yes I know it can't be done normally but MC+QM+MS= small chance of KOTRx4, suffice to say it was a long day for me).

" It's not that they like the content or the battle system or the drama" - you hear that, none of you like any of it. Guy sounds like a total arse.

Perhaps it's better that his income is appropriately reduced.

Sweet, and excuse to practice my Japanese!

Can't say I'm surprised at this, as a Yakuza game hasn't graced the west in a long time.
Good thing I know Japanese though and have studied it for 6 years. :P

Also, those who are crying that we should worry about SEGA Sammy buying Atlus, no we shouldn't because Atlus is still it's own company and is run by it's old CEO from before the acquisition. Only thing changing are the stocks and the name of Index to Sega Dreams Corp. Plus Atlus has nothing to do with the Yakuza games to begin with. Is it disappointing that Sega isn't using Atlus USA for localization, yes but as they said it's a fixed team size really.
...huh so this is what it's like to be Jeffers. XD

Oww man, what the beef? Just because that spin off Dead souls flopped doesn't mean the main series will.

I'd be importing if Japanese games weren't so expensive, still 84.35AUD on play-asia.

Easton Dark:
The team that makes the game is the same one that localizes it? Let a fan do it for free or something, you know people would line up to do it.

Even if a fan translation happens, Sega would probably be too inept to do anything in the West.

Phantasy Star Online 2 already has a nearly-complete fan translation patch and Sega has been completely silent on the game getting any kind of release in the West.

So basically, they're stupid. Or I at least like to say they are. A lot.

Sega really chooses to release the oddest things over here. Come on guys, you know you'd make your money back and more if you released it state-side. I'd like for that zombie Yakuza game to not be the last one to make it stateside, especially because I'm such a big fan of this highly underrated series.

Well, guess it's time to import like I had to do for Ryu ga Gotoku 1 + 2 HD.

It is funny how companies spend all this money developing these games and then limit themselves marketwise with things like this. While I'm sure it's possible to lose money if the game undersells by a huge margin I would think this series at least is well enough known to avoid that. Curious to know if there's more to it than just the costs of voice acting and printing a new series of discs/packaging which is behind this.

That said, while I don't begrudge anyone else liking this series, I got Yakuza 4 used and 'played' it for maybe an hour and a half before I gave up and returned it. Between this, Metal Gear, and Final Fantasy series I'm becoming increasingly convinced that the Japanese have no word in their language for 'editor.'

I was waiting for this to get localized but guess I will just import it now and study japanese. I already bought the Genki books and other study material, now if only I wasn't so lazy.

cursedseishi:

Rainbow_Dashtruction:
Wasn't the four previous Yakuza games extremely unprofitable in the west? If they don't make the money back from localization, its surprising they kept localizing the series.

They don't spend a whole lot on localization though, at most its simply just adjusting the text to fit the size constraints of the boxes it goes into after it's translated. Voice Acting tends to be the big cost item when doing these things, which Sega hasn't been doing since Yakuza 1 (or 2, if I'm wrong about 1 being the only game with English voices).

It sells well enough though, specially if you're claiming all 4 sold badly, to warrant releases up to Yakuza 4 and the Dead Souls spinoff. It just sounds like the devs (or Sega), doesn't feel like bringing in any additional developers to handle translating and localizing the game. And in that case, they should just hand it over to Atlus to handle that. I mean hell, it's not like they have to pay them more now to do so or anything.

Well the poor sales in the west IS the reason SEGA doesn't do it. All four of the games had consistently awful sales. Yes they might make a small profit from translating it, but companies generally look the way of "If we can use those same resources to make more money elsewhere, it's not worth it".

Even then, how expensive is it to translate an entire game? I figure it probably isn't piss cheap if so many companies refuse. It's not like your just doing a direct translation to English then re-sizing text.

Wait, do my eyes decieve me, or is there a woman amongst the playable characters finally?*Checks Wikipedia* Yeah, a female playable character for the first time.
And we aren't getting it in the west?

FFFFFFFFUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUU-*Vehement swearing then cleansing breath.*

Man that's dissapointing on so many levels! The one thing I've eagerly anticipated from this series, and I won't even likely get to play it.

I would've done my best to get a copy, and I would've recommended it to my S.O. Especially if we can play as her from start to finish!

Rebel_Raven:
Wait, do my eyes decieve me, or is there a woman amongst the playable characters finally?*Checks Wikipedia* Yeah, a female playable character for the first time.
And we aren't getting it in the west?

Haruka is playable in 5. From what I hear she's not exactly a warrior-type (apparently her role in the game is some kind of "try to be an idol" simulator) but hey, that's still a promotion from "that plot device who gets kidnapped once a game to throw Kiryu back into the underworld" XD

What surprises me about the way they treated 5 is just that the game actually got a small amount of coverage by the western gaming media. Not as much as your standard AAA development, naturally, but a whole hell of a lot more than some of the obscure JRPGS that like to sneak across the pond when no-one's looking. I'm disappointed, since the yakuza games are some of the only sandbox games I like, but if that's the writing on the wall, I guess there's nothing to be done. :(

balladbird:

Rebel_Raven:
Wait, do my eyes decieve me, or is there a woman amongst the playable characters finally?*Checks Wikipedia* Yeah, a female playable character for the first time.
And we aren't getting it in the west?

Haruka is playable in 5. From what I hear she's not exactly a warrior-type (apparently her role in the game is some kind of "try to be an idol" simulator) but hey, that's still a promotion from "that plot device who gets kidnapped once a game to throw Kiryu back into the underworld" XD

What surprises me about the way they treated 5 is just that the game actually got a small amount of coverage by the western gaming media. Not as much as your standard AAA development, naturally, but a whole hell of a lot more than some of the obscure JRPGS that like to sneak across the pond when no-one's looking. I'm disappointed, since the yakuza games are some of the only sandbox games I like, but if that's the writing on the wall, I guess there's nothing to be done. :(

Yeah, a definite promotion. Shame she doesn't maul people, though. Unless she does, then that's just epic. :P

Honestly, this would be the first I heard of Yakuza 5. It's good to know that it's getting attention in the west, though. Frankly we need more of Japan's games brought over, IMO. And those games need attention in the media so we know they're here. A game can be made, or broken by how much word of it's existance gets out there, IMO.
Even a bad game might sell well if there's commercials on TV for it.

this doesn't really affect a US release. the publisher decides where a game is released, not the developers.. if Sega says yes to a US release the it will happen, regardless of what the developers want or don't want.

Of course there aren't any plans, Sega's hardly a patron saint of generosity, and I doubt that'll change. Have we learned nothing of the whole Shining series Youtube takedown blitz?

Rebel_Raven:
Wait, do my eyes decieve me, or is there a woman amongst the playable characters finally?*Checks Wikipedia* Yeah, a female playable character for the first time.
And we aren't getting it in the west?

FFFFFFFFUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUU-*Vehement swearing then cleansing breath.*

Man that's dissapointing on so many levels! The one thing I've eagerly anticipated from this series, and I won't even likely get to play it.

I would've done my best to get a copy, and I would've recommended it to my S.O. Especially if we can play as her from start to finish!

but playing her character would be sexist... as the whole point of her segment is to dress her up in skimpy costumes and have her dance off against other pop idols.

seditary:
Why would the Yakuza devs be doing the localization?

Because its sold well enough in the West to warrant doing so every time.

Sega's just scared to due so simply because as we saw with all of the games localized in Operation Rainfall failing to sell even though the internet's Nintendo fans pretty much got Robin Williams' daughter to campaign on its behalf.

And considering that Yakuza mechanics wise is a spiritual sequel to Shenmue (the franchise that Sega spent 90 million on and failed to recoup) Sega's being really cautious. Don't know why, it sells a decently enough for a Japanese import PS3 exclusive.

OP: The people that demand it are wanting it because the main character is on the low, one of the most impressively morally complex protagonist in a long time and the story consistently grown out a background in itself and within every character mentioned. Even the side quest characters.

Its one fuck of a franchise and the fact that it has made it to its fifth installment with people still giving a shit about what happening in its world is impressive in this day and age. Franchises today usually add very little to each game in terms of story. They write games in the same manner that the usual Hollywood movies are written. Same story, different scenic background. Yakuza is written like one of the better serious anime franchises. Each game is like a show's season. And always properly references and sometimes uses events from previous installments.

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