All About Yakuza: The Kiryu Saga – Answering all your questions at once.

I’m Kinglink and let’s talk about the Yakuza Franchise, particularly the Kiryu games, which I lovingly call the Kiryu Saga. 

Though I’d like to explain this concept of this series quickly.  The quick backstory is after finishing both Yakuza 3 and 4 I wanted to make a video but hadn’t finished the entire series, there was a lot to talk about such as the Tojo Clan’s place in the series, or Kamurocho’s evolution, but I couldn’t talk about the entire franchise.   

I also often get questions about where to start the series on any of my Yakuza videos so I figured this might be a good topic. 

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The Awesome Adventures of Captain Spirit Review – A free but still incredible adventure

The Awesome Adventures of Captain Spirit was a lead-in to Life is Strange 2.  It is designed to be a title that helped promote the new title in the franchise, but also is a standalone title for the majority of it, and is quite well made. 

Captain Spirit focuses on a young boy, Chris Eriksen, and his desire to be a superhero, a common dream of young kids, and a relatable one.  He imagines himself as Captain Spirit with a band of fellow superheroes who fight against a league of villains. 

Of course, this is just a fantasy, and while the trailer hints that Chris Eriksen has some kind of special powers, this doesn’t appear to be the case.  Instead, DontNod develops another interesting and unique character and shows why they are revered as great storytellers. 

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Assassin’s Creed Unity – You say you want a revolution

Assassin’s Creed: Unity has always had the reputation of being the black sheep of the franchise, and it had big shoes to fill. Coming out after the superb Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag, which took the series to the high seas, and Assassin’s Creed 2, which many fans still consider the best, it may never have been possible to reach the top.

However, Assassin’s Creed Unity also was a massive undertaking. It was the first game on a new series of consoles. It added multiplayer and attempted to expand the map to a massive city, and all this while trying to return the series from the pIrate adventure of Assassin’s Creed: Black Flag, to the original core experience of crowded city streets.

Assassin’s Creed Unity has problems, but what struck me as I’ve finally played it in 2021 is that there are so many different and distinct parts of the experience, nothing was like what I heard anyone describe. When it came out Unity was considered unplayable, but now it seems Unity has been refined into a flawed but full experience.

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Wonder Boy: The Dragon’s Trap Review – Reviving a classic Sega title in its best form

Wonder Boy III: The Dragon’s Trap was originally made for the Sega Master System and ported to the Game Gear and Turbo Grafx-16.  It involved the main character, Wonder Boy, fresh from his last adventure getting cursed by a dragon’s curse and then roaming the land to try to fix that curse.  

It also was a fantastic game that rivaled entries like Metroid and allowed players to return to areas they had been in before to find new rooms with abilities earned over time.  It was essentially a predecessor to what would be known as a Metroidvania. 

And so in 2017, Wonder Boy: The Dragon Trap was released, remaking the original title, but also improving it and giving it a more interesting overhaul to mesh with modern gamers.  While the original game can still be seen in the new release, the improvements will welcome gamers who aren’t looking for a replica of what a Master system was limited to. 

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Yakuza 6 – So long Kiryu, thanks for the memories

So my time with Yakuza finally ends.  After 8 games on PC, I’m caught up and ready for wherever the series will take the player in the future.  While Judgement and now Lost Judgement is hopefully coming to PC, for the moment I’ve arrived at the temporary end of the journey. 

And Yakuza 6 ends what I consider the main arc of the franchise, ending the games that star Kiryu Kazuma in one final epic tale, at least that was the hope. 

Yakuza 6 is probably not what fans expected, and unfortunately may not be what fans want, but many issues with Yakuza 6 come from this potentially being the final time players take on the role of Kiryu Kazuma in the franchise. 

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Life Is Strange: Before the Storm Review – An amazing prequel, if a bit weaker.

Life Is Strange was a unique but well-made game that took the Telltale Games’ formula and improved on it to make an amazing experience, but its major accomplishments feel unique to the point that a return to the same game could never live up to the original.

At the same time, prequels can be extremely hard to pull off. It’s worse when the story is the key component of the game, and players already know the results of the character’s arcs. Yet Life Is Strange: Before the Storm is a prequel that tries to do just that and seems to succeed.

Life Is Strange: Before The Storm revolves around Chloe, Max’s friend from the original Life is Strange. In Life Is Strange, Chloe is a punk dropout of a prestigious academy, and much of the game revolves around Chloe and Max. In addition, there’s a missing girl known as Rachel Amber, who is unseen and unknown though Life Is Strange does explore and explain her disappearance.

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Halo: Combat Evolved – The game the franchise left behind

Twenty years have passed since Halo: Combat Evolved first appeared on the Xbox in 2001, and over the years the franchise has grown into a true juggernaut.  With the release of Halo Master Chief Collection, it gives new players a chance to go back and replay the entire series.

It seems worthwhile to look through each game’s offering over time and to start with the originator.  This review will mainly focus only on the single-player offerings, though the Halo Master Chief Collection offers the multiplayer for Halo Combat Evolved.

But given the potential to remake Halo: Combat Evolved into a brand new version, players are instead getting the already existing PC version.  The Halo: Combat Evolved Anniversary edition came out in 2011, and while that’s the 10th anniversary of the original game, 10 years after its release the game feels like it could use another update.  

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Yakuza 5 – Too much of a good thing

Yakuza 5 takes what Yakuza 4 accomplished and amplifies everything in it to create a brand new experience that is bigger and better than before. It is the most jam-packed Yakuza title yet, the longest-running in the Kiryu saga, and contains the most playable characters. 

But it also is a case where it becomes too much of a good thing that finally reaches the series’ breaking point, and causes some issues for the franchise. 

Yakuza 5 has returning characters from the previous game with Kiryu, Saejima, and Akiyama, but adds in two new playable characters, an ex-baseball player, Tatsuo Shinada, and for the first time in the series, Haruka Sawamura, Kiryu’s adopted daughter. Each of these characters gets their own section of the story, with Haruka and Akiyama sharing their portion, giving players four distinct parts of the game, with a rather large finale at the end.

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Better with Friends – The challenge of reviewing Deep Rock Galactic

I’m Kinglink and let’s start this video off by talking about Deep Rock Galactic.  

I found Deep Rock Galactic to be incredible. It’s a clever game that is a ton of fun, and I enjoyed myself. There was a lot of hype about this game, and I finally picked it up and had an excellent time. and yet I struggle to judge it.  

Deep Rock Galactic is worth the purchase in my case. Three friends and I tried it out during a free weekend. We had a great time. We all picked it up after that weekend session and played quite a few more sessions since and we have had a lot of fun with the game every time. You’ll be seeing my group playing the game in these videos. 

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Yakuza 4 Remastered Review – A lot more character in this one

After three games in the series, Yakuza 4 had some big shoes to fill, now with the addition of two remakes in the form of Kiwami and Kiwami 2, and the prequel Yakuza 0, Yakuza 4’s task is bigger than ever. 

Yakuza 4 delivers a different game than fans might expect, but also one that changes the formula of the series and creates something fresh. 

Yakuza 4’s heavily on previous titles and creates issues for new players. I originally played Yakuza 4 in 2016 as my first entry into the series, and while the game was good at the time, without having already played the three previous titles the game talked about many characters who got no development, and thus the story suffered for it. I wondered why did the game focus on characters it didn’t take the time to introduce?

After playing the previous titles, and falling in love with the series, a return to this game in its remastered form creates a more interesting experience. While Yakuza 4 begins with the assumption of the large history of the series, it expands the world in new ways and creates an interesting take on the series. 

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