Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Yakuza Kenzan interviews in English

Videos pertaining to Ryu ga Gotoku Kenzan, which were on a DVD included with the rerelease of Yakuza 2 in Japan, have been translated into English.

With the recent confirmation that Yakuza 3 is coming to the west, plus continuing release of information regarding Yakuza 4, I thought now a good time to post links to Eastern Mind's translation of the Yakuza Kenzan production videos. I’d actually wanted to talk about the Eastern Mind blog for a while now, since it covers a wide range of fascinating Japanese news which other websites don’t normally carry – it also covers stuff from Japanese news sites like Dengeki, with an English explanation. They’ve covered all manner of things, including Nagoshi-san’s visit to a curry house to research Yakuza 3.

It's well worth bookmarking to see what else they report on, plus check out their archives for some fascinating past features.

Regarding Kenzan the game:
For those who haven’t played it, Kenzan features the cast of the Yakuza games, albeit in a medieval Japanese setting. Imagine almost if the cast from Goodfellas did a Robin Hood film, and you’ve got a rough analogy.
It’s also based on the excellent Musashi novel by Eiji Yoshikawa. Basically you wander around solving problems, getting into swordfights, and generally having the same kind of fun as in the Yakuza games. Steeped in Japanese history, it’s a game we’re likely never to see here. But it’s a lot of fun and relatively easy to complete without knowing the language.

Regarding the Kenzan videos:
"In the world of videogame playing, the Japanese are a fortunate people. For the Japanese re-release of Ryu ga Gotoku 2 (Yakuza 2), SEGA prepared a bonus DVD with exclusive contents that focused on advertising the third game of the series, the Kenzan! spin-off. Within this DVD there are a few presentation trailers to be found, as well as a couple of exclusive interviews that were never released online before - or at least not with proper subtitles. Because the very purpose of this blog is to fill the information gaps between East and West, I now publish two small video features."

One of the videos includes an exclusive pre-release interview with Toshihiro Nagoshi.

Link to the videos.

On a side-related note, the BBCF has rated Yakuza 3 as an 18 certificated game, and it's UNCUT. Yay!


  1. Appreciate the post! Can't wait for Ryu Ga Gotoku 3!

  2. I still can't believe that Yakuza 3 is coming! Very nice to see all this info put together!

    Did you know the guy from eastern mind also writes for HG101?

  3. Really? I didn't know that actually! You mean diebussy? I found him via NTSC-uk.

  4. He wrote that Love-de-Lic article which introduced me to all those wonderful games I had no idea existed so I started paying attention to his work at HG101 from there on. His name is Bruno de Figeiredo.

    Also I've just googled for that "dieubussy" name and found out he did that SUPERB essay on Ico and Shadow of the Colossus. If you read it you know the reason of my enthusiasm.

    Again, thanks much for this post ;)