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Yakuza 3 time constraints forced cuts

Localisation team had run out of time.

SEGA has explained that content was trimmed from the Western version of Yakuza 3 because the localisation team only had a limited amount of time to complete its work.

"Due to the limited time we were given we had to leave certain bits of the game out and we chose portions we felt didn't resonate with western culture, i.e. a Japanese history quiz show and the concept of hostess clubs," SEGA told Kotaku.

"We understand that this is not the optimum thing to do, but given the options of releasing the next chapter of a beloved game so that our fans can experience the story of Yakuza, versus not releasing it at all, we felt it was worth it to release it with 99 per cent of the content intact.

"We made sure that the story in no way, shape or form changed from the lack of the quiz show or hostess clubs," the rep added. "You can still go into cabarets and on dates with the ladies in the game, and Kazuma still kicks major ass."

SEGA won fan approval with Yakuza 3 by sticking with Japanese voice-overs and apparently favouring a more authentic approach. But removing hostess clubs appears to have undone some of that goodwill.

"Ultimately, the choice that had to be made was either no Yakuza 3 in the West, or a version of the game that was almost exactly the same, but with a little less trivia," wrote SEGA on its US blog.

"That said, our teams also understand that many of you guys love games like Yakuza because of that experience, and rest assured that we'll continue fighting on your behalf to make sure that going forward, we can provide as close to the full experience as possible - no matter how foreign.

Yakuza 3 will be released on PS3 here in Europe on 12th March.

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Robert Purchese

Senior Staff Writer

Bertie is senior staff writer and Eurogamer's Poland-and-dragons correspondent. He's part of the furniture here, a friendly chair, and reports on all kinds of things, the stranger the better.


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