After countless indications that a Western release was unlikely, Sega has announced that Yakuza 3 is making the trip to U.S. and European PlayStation 3 consoles early next year.
Sega has been teasing us. Ryū ga Gotoku 3, the third game in Sega's Yakuza series, has sold half a million copies in Japan since its release in February of last year. Despite strong sales and the clamouring of the franchises' fanbase, the developer has remained quiet about a Western release - until now. In a post on the European PlayStation Blog, Sega announces the impending U.S., European, and Australian release, with words from SOE's European Marketing Director, Gary Knight.
"Yakuza 3 was one of the most requested titles for localisation by our European SEGA community, so we are delighted to be able to fulfil their wishes with this announcement. As well as delving even further into the rich narrative of the Yakuza universe, the development team have pushed the PlayStation 3 hardware to the limits to produce a beautiful and startlingly realistic depiction of the Japanese underworld."
The localisation of the game will feature full Japanese voice acting with English subtitles, as it should be. Best of all, the PlayStation 3 exclusive is due out in March. That's only three months or so of waiting. Perhaps Sega was wise to tease us until now.
Our long struggle is over. Time for a nap.
East Meets West – Yakuza 3 Coming In 2010 [PlayStation Blog Europe] y.