When Yakuza producer Daisuke Sato mentioned back in May of 2018 that there would be some changes made to the Yakuza 3 remaster release, citing moral and ethical changes in today’s society, gamers were left wondering what exact changes would befall the game and how bad would they be? Well, we finally learned what sort of changes will be taking place within the remaster, and some are more drastic than others.
As noted in the four minute video, some of the subtle changes includes replacing the hostess voice actresses who were no longer available, and changing the imperial Japanese flag for one of the gangs to a different symbol.
Some believe that the removal of the Imperial flag is done in order to accommodate the sensibilities of South Korea. In fact, South Korea still holds a grudge against Japan over the “comfort women” mass rapes that took place during World War II, which they claim cannot be resolved through diplomacy alone.
According to Korea Herald, South Korean President Moon Jae-in explained to the press that it will take time to finally heal the “broken hearts” of the women who were taken and turned into prostitutes under Japan’s imperial army during World War II…
“The issue of comfort women for the Japanese military can truly be resolved when the victims‘ dignity and honor are restored and their broken hearts are healed, […]
[…] “I hope this issue will not lead to a diplomatic dispute between South Korea and Japan. I do not even believe it is an issue that can be resolved through a diplomatic solution,”
Yes, South Korea managed to mend ties with North Korea, but still hold bitter blood over the “Comfort Women” issue, which Japan denies was non-consensual, stating that they were just prostitutes.
Anyway, some believe that Sega is attempting to placate the South Koreans by removing the imperial flag references from all versions of the game, similar to the removal of the Imperial flag from a character’s shoes for the South Korean version of Persona 5.
Most notably, however, is the removal of the cross-dresser side-story involving a man who dressed up like a woman and chased down Kiryu throughout the game.
The entire side-plot is being removed along with the character and the mini-game where players would have to outrun the cross-dresser and rapidly tap buttons to escape from their clutches.
Kiryu also referred to the cross-dresser as an “it”.
In today’s politically correct society, there would likely be a lot of SJWs on social media complaining about the side-story being “transphobic”.
However, this isn’t just affecting a single region’s release of the remastered edition of Yakuza 3, this will affect all versions of the game.
Moreover, as mentioned in the other article, the cigarette has also been removed from Kiryu’s mouth on the box art.
Last and certainly the most least of the changes is the removal of Answer x Answer. This was a mini-game that was based on Japanese history. The entire thing was based around Japanese society; the logos and images were all in Japanese, and the references, questions, and answers were all based on Japan. The actual reason for the removal of the quiz wasn’t stated but it was pretty obvious that trying to localize it for anyone outside of Japan would be rather difficult.
Most gamers expected the cross-dressing subplot to be removed, but all the changes and modifications to the content compared to the original Japanese release of Yakuza 3 on the PS3 sort of flies in the face of when executive director Toshihiro Nagoshi said that the games re-released overseas wouldn’t have any cut content. I guess that’s not entirely true anymore is it?
What’s more is that there doesn’t appear to be a solid Western release date for Yakuza 3’s remaster, as a Sega rep dropped into a Reddit thread a couple of months ago to basically give some not entirely positive news, saying…
“These remasters have only been announced for Japan, not the west – sorry!”
Yakuza 3‘s remastered edition is already out and available right now in Japan.
(Thanks for the news tip for s_fnx)