History VideoGame / RyuGaGotoku

29th Jun '13 10:09:43 AM Larkmarn
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29th Jun '13 10:08:51 AM Larkmarn
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[[quoteright:300:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/yakuza-sega_2806.jpg]]
[[caption-width-right:300:Kazuma Kiryu apparently finds the description fascinating]]

->'''M''': Kiryu is [[GloryDays the way yakuza used to be]]. [[HonorAmongThieves We kept the streets clean. People liked us. We didn't bother ordinary citizens. We respected our bosses]]. Now, guys like that only exist in video games.\\
'''S''': I don't know any ex-yakuza running orphanages.\\
'''K''': There was one a few years ago. A good guy.\\
'''M''': You sure it wasn't [[LegitimateBusinessmensSocialClub just a tax shelter?]]\\
'''K''': [[HypocrisyNod Sure it was a tax shelter]] but he ran it like a legitimate thing. You know.
-->-[[http://www.boingboing.net/2010/08/10/yakuza-3-review.html Real Yakuza gangsters review the game]].

'''''Ryu ga Gotoku''''' (''Like a Dragon''), or '''''Yakuza''''' as it's known in America, is a video game brawler series for the [=PS2=] and [=PS3=]. The first game follows the story of Kazuma Kiryu (桐生 一馬, Kiryū Kazuma), the "Dragon of Dojima," a former Yakuza whose release from prison after a 10-year sentence sparks the setup of the first game's plot. After his release, Kazuma returns and finds that his friend is missing and the clan to which he once belonged (the Tojo Clan) has had 10 billion yen (approx. $100 million US) stolen from them, and the entire Japanese underworld is now searching for the money. The game was heavily acclaimed in Japan for being the first game to explore Yakuza culture with such depth and ''as it is claimed'' authenticity to the nature of Japan's criminal underground (info from Wikipedia).

The series is basically old school BeatEmUp with a [[WideOpenSandbox sandbox setting]] and [[{{RPG}} RPG elements]]. While you can just follow the story and play it as a straightforward beat 'em up, there are TONS of sidequests, minigames and secrets to do and find, many of them quite challenging, unique, even funny sometimes. Players can help people on the street with myriad problems, find hidden illegal gambling halls to play in, go to the batting cage to hit a few balls or find an [[OldMaster enigmatic martial artist]] to learn many powerful moves from. And in good ol' {{Shonen}} / {{Seinen}} series fashion, there's even underground fighting tournaments to participate in, complete with a caged arena. The amount of things to do in the games is mindblowing.

Fighting enemies earns you experience points to gain new moves to punish them with, and you can also learn new moves by doing sidequests. There's also tons of items and equipment to find, and you can even create your own. The series is considered by many players to be the spiritual successor to ''{{Shenmue}}'', and is also compared to such classic old-school series as ''StreetsOfRage'' and ''RiverCityRansom''.

There have been four games in the main series, with ''Ryu ga Gotoku 4'' currently available in Japan and North America and Europe. There's also a spin-off called ''Ryu ga Gotoku Kenzan!'' that takes place in feudal Japan, starring Kiryu Kazuma-no-suke. A very combat-oriented PSP spinoff called ''Kurohyou: Ryu ga Gotoku Shinshou'' focuses on the life of underground fighter Ukyou Tatsuya. The spin-off featuring characters from the main series, ''Ryu ga Gotoku: Of The End''/''Yakuza: Dead Souls'', takes place during an... [[ZombieApocalypse umm... outbreak of the living dead]]. As you may have guessed, this is not canon.

''Ryu ga Gotoku 5'' has been released Japan in December 2012, featuring [[SerialEscalation five different protagonists and cities]]. It received a perfect 40/40 score from ''Famitsu'' magazine, a first for the series. While no announcement for a US release has been made yet, hopefully one will be announced soon.
----
!!This game series includes examples of:
* AProtagonistIsRyu - Kazuma Kiryu from obviously, but in a [[SubvertedTrope subversion]], though, his rival in the second game is Ryuji Goda, another dragon-themed character(although he's more a NobleDemon than a full-blown bad guy, and he still exhibits many traits associated with his name).
* AbhorrentAdmirer - in the third game, Kazuma's animal magnetism draws the attention of the DragQueen Michiru, causing 'her' to stalk you through several pulse-pounding chase-scenes. How is it possible to run that fast on high heels? The world may never know...
* ActionCommands - Some of Kazuma's Heat Actions have these to potentially increase their damage (and pain to the unfortunate recepient). And in the second game, these sometimes crop up when Kazuma has to avoid some damaging move, tying in with PressXToNotDie.
* ActionGirl / FairCop: Kaoru Sayama
* ActorAllusion - Two of them in the American release of the first game-
** MarkHamill voices Goro Majima as [[WesternAnimation/BatmanTheAnimatedSeries an unstable, sadomasochistic gangster]] who laughs at pain -- even his own and [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=778VDaSLeX4 is more than willing to kill his own henchmen when they don't get with the program]]. In addition he's so determined to take down Kazuma himself that [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8mjiNzDDTmI he'll stop anyone else who's trying to beat him to the punch]].
** [[{{Smallville}} Michael Rosembaum]] plays Akira Nishiki, Kazuma's childhood friend who after the incident that sends Kazuma to prison turns into a cold, calculating MagnificentBastard who will do almost anything it takes to gain leadership of the Tojo Clan.
* ActuallyFourMooks - Used extensively. Anytime you walk into some random punk on the streets, you may safely assume that he's got anywhere between 1 and 3 buddies hiding somewhere BehindTheBlack, ready to jump in to help him the moment the fighting starts.
** Also used with an amusing twist by a RecurringBoss in the third game, [[spoiler: the AbhorrentAdmirer DragQueen, Michiru]]. His uncanny ability to pop up behind you when you least expect it culminates in a lengthy chase where, every time you think you've shaken him, he appears AGAIN, right in front of you, DaffyDuck style. In the end, it's revealed that [[spoiler: he's actually a team of cross-dressing [[AlwaysIdenticalTwins identical triplets]], and the other two were just chasing you to make sure you 'broke up' with the real Michiru so she could get back together with her Drag-King ex-'boy'friend.]]
* AmazingFreakingGrace: Played over the end credits for the first game.
* AscendedExtra: Koji Shindo was just a lieutenant of the Nishiki Family notable for leading the back alley ambush on Kazuma at Serena in the first game. In the second, he became the Patriarch of the Nishiki Family.
** Hiroshi Hayashi was one of Ryuji Goda's right-hand men in ''2''. In ''Dead Souls'', he's a [[spoiler: ''freaking'' zombie. And not just any zombie. He's the insanely durable zombie (mutant may be a more suitable term for him) who kicks off the zombie outbreak. Granted, he didn't turn into one by will, and wanted to stop Nikaido and DD from whatever their plans were before he was mutated.]]
** Akiyama [[spoiler: is probably the bum who was first shown catching money after the 10 billion yen incident. The facial features are a bit different, though that is likely due to the series' ArtEvolution, and their clothes are different (they wear a different cap), but they are in the exact same location and do the exact same thing (catch a bill, then gather as much as they can).]]
* AuthorityEqualsAsskicking [[spoiler:Kazuma]] taking the title of Chairman of the Tojo Clan. Later [[spoiler:Daigo Dojima]] in future games.
* AwesomeButImpractical: Essence of Pole Dancing in Yakuza 3. Learned by [[ItMakesSenseInContext watching a drunk perform a pole dance on a lamppost]], it does good damage, is an incredibly flashy looking hurricanrana, and... well, was learned by watching a drunk perform a pole dance on a lamppost. However, it uses up your HEAT gauge and far more importantly, instantly removes your drunken status. Also it's very easy to accidentally do when you're trying to perform another HEAT action.
** There's also the other drunk Essence, Essence of Drunken Thrust. Same thing as the one above, but the one upside it has is that it's easier to pull off without doing another HEAT action. Others Essences requires certain environment objects, so during some storyline missions, you won't be able to pull these off.
** A good chunk of the weapons fall into this, especially the Patriarch weapons. High power, but will break in about five swings.
* AwesomenessByAnalysis: The ''Revelation'' mechanic. By witnessing some bizarre and awesome accidents and fights, the heroes can get inspiration for new combat maneuvers.
* AwesomeYetPractical: Essence of Terror, learned from watching a girl deliver tissues at lightening speed. Though it requires 4 enemies, it deals good damage for a multiple enemy HEAT action.
** Essence of Rolling. Easy to pull off (All you got to do is to do a dodge roll) and deals great damage.
* AxCrazy: Goro Majima. Holy crap.
** Kanda in the third game. [[BigBadWannabe But he's more bark than bite]].
* BackFromTheDead: [[spoiler:Lau Ka Long in the third game. Considering he doesn't survive this encounter, this is also a case of BackForTheDead.]]
** [[spoiler:Ryuji]] in ''Of The End/Dead Souls''. [[spoiler:[[WeCanRebuildHim He is now a cyborg]] with an ArmCannon.]]
* {{Badass}}: Kiryu Kazuma
** In fact, nearly anyone who is an ally or associate of Kazuma is a badass in some way.
* BadassCrew: Everyone who supported and helped Kazuma has at least done something awesome to earn this. Two of them being his TrueCompanions in ''4'' (Akiyama, Saejima and Tanimura) and the other playable characters in ''Dead Souls'' (Akiyama again, Goda, Majima)
* BadGuyBar: Deborah in the original is populated solely by people who exist to be beaten up by you.
* BadExportForYou: The US release of ''Yakuza 3'' unfortunately cut some of the features like mahjong and managing a massage parlor. Granted, they didn't do this out of vindictiveness so much as feeling that western gamers just wouldn't get mahjong or how to play shogi. Though losing the DatingSim aspect of the hostess clubs was actually well-received by some players. It did, however, result in the MEB location being little more than a booth decorated with pictures of women. You can still enter the minigames buildings, but they only exist for gaining locker keys and certain sub-stories.
* BatterUp: Goro Majima, in one of his more psycho moments, takes a baseball bat to one of his underlings.
--> '''Majima:''' This is the part where you're SUPPOSED TO LAUGH! [WHACK!] '''[[ClusterFBomb LAUGH YOU STUPID MUTHAFUCKA!]]'''
** The bat's HEAT action first involves hitting the target in the knee, wind up...and HOME RUN TO THE FACE!
* BettingMiniGame: The two hidden (and illegal) Casinos as well as the (also hidden and illegal) Cho-Han Dice Parlor in Kamurocho, although oddly enough they don't offer a direct cash payout, rather relying on a prize exchange system. There's also the Volcano Video Slot Parlor which is more legal and also relies on a prize exchange system for the payoffs.
* BewareTheNiceOnes: The other side of Kazuma, once he has been pushed. Don't push him.
** Akiyama is harder to push (Given his mostly carefree nature) but misuse money or people in any way and he will literally kick your ass to curb.
* BigBad: [[spoiler:Akira Nishiki and Kyohei Jingu in the first one, Kim Taejin and Ryuji Goda in the second, Yoshitaka Mine in the third, Seishiro Munakata in the forth, and Tetsu Nikaido in ''Dead Souls''.]]
** BiggerBad: [[spoiler: Ryo Takashima in the second game; Andre Richardson in the third; Munakata in the fourth, DD in ''Dead Souls''.]]
* BigBadWannabe: The third game introduces Tsuyoshi Kanda, third patriarch of the Nishiki family. He is shown to be short tempered, violent to his men and also seemingly a rapist, and is named as the most likely suspect for [[spoiler: Kashiwagi's murder]]. Then you actually fight him and it's revealed [[spoiler: he's only good at hitting you with furniture, he's too stupid to plan something like an assassination attempt, and the implied rapes are actually ''heavy handed back masssages'', which some of his victims end up liking!]]
** The same game has Hamazaki, who comes closer, [[spoiler: but he vanishes from the plot after Lau's death.]]
* BigDamnVillains: [[spoiler: The apparent BigBad of the third gave saves Rikiya from a beheading. He does the same thing later, but he's a little too late that time.]]
* BitterSweetEnding: The first game may have resulted in Kazuma saving the Tojo from absolute ruin but led [[spoiler: to the death of nearly all his old friends, his mentor/father figure, former best friend, and love interest to the point he was actually willing to go back to jail if Date hadn't snapped him out of it by pointing out he still had Haruka to watch over.]]
** [[spoiler: The third game. While Kiryu is able to stop the smugglers and save the clan, several good people have died in the process.]]
* BloodlessCarnage: In the fourth game, Saejima's murderous rampage at the start of his story has a surprising lack of gunshot wounds on his victims. [[spoiler: [[FridgeBrilliance Which makes perfect sense]] when you later discover he was set up as TheScapegoat by Katsuragi.]]
* BonusBoss: Jo Amon, an assassin who makes an appearance in every game, shows up when certain requirements are fulfilled. In the fourth game, he makes an appearance with his three brothers to take on Kazuma, Akiyama, Saejima and Tanimura. By ''Dead Souls'', he's [[spoiler: outdone by his zombiefied ancestor in Kamurucho's underground (you know, [[BonusDungeon the one full of zombies and mutants waiting to kick your ass]]).]] Players are usually rewarded for defeating him with a GameBreaker, since he's just [[ThatOneBoss that hard to kill.]]
* BreakableWeapons: The series does include a exact counter to how many hits the weapon can take before it breaks. Equipable weapons can be repaired...for a hefty price.
* BullyingADragon: While most random encounters are cases of MuggingTheMonster, many thugs and gangs seek out fights against you knowing full well who you are and thinking they can take you anyway.
* CallToAgriculture: Kazuma's call is to manage a tiny beachfront orphanage with ten kids in it, but it's the same idea: this is his peaceful retirement from a life of crime. Or so he hoped, until ''Yakuza 3'' happened.
* CarFu: In the first game, everyone's favorite PsychoForHire Goro Majima [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-vJH8-_S1Ns literally crashes the party at the Shangri-La soapland with a truck]].
-->'''Majima:''' LET'S FUCK THIS SHIT UUUUUUP!!
** In Yakuza 3 [[spoiler: Majima outdoes himself by being TheCavalry to a surrounded Kazuma, with a semi-truck.]]
*** [[spoiler:[[RealMenWearPink A PINK semi-truck.]]]]
* TheCityNarrows: Purgatory.
* ClusterFBomb: '''Oh my fucking God yes.'''
** Somewhat averted in future games, as the original Japanese dialogue is much tamer compared to the first game, which spews F-bombs any chance it gets.
* ConservationOfNinjutsu: Elite bosses are pretty much the only real threat to Kazuma and company. Mooks exist to be splattered across the curb in spectacular fashion.
* ConversationalTroping: During an early part of ''Of The End''(Probably the first sub-story you'll do.), Akiyama falls in with a group of people you'd find in any zombie flick, like the geek, the desperate businessman, the horny couple, the pious woman and a prankster dressed as a zombie and you have to save them in the order of prankster, couple, pious. Along the way, many zombie victim tropes are lampshaded. In the end, the geek steals the businessman's money and heads off, only to [[KarmicDeath slip on a banana peel, mess up his leg, and fall victim to the zombies]].
* CoolOldGuy: Detective Makoto Date, who even fights alongside Kazuma at times and is pretty reasonable to him in the first game.
** It's not just him, Kawara doubles it for being a CowboyCop and there's Hanaya/Kage who "plays fair," Sotaro Komaki, Fuma/Kazama, [[spoiler: his cop brother-turned-CIA Agent Jouji]] and finally Nakahara that [[spoiler:wrestled with a ''bull'']].
* CounterAttack: Kazuma can learn several from Sotaro Komaki in the games. The easy to pull-off Knock Back, the strong Tiger Drop, and the stunning Komaki Parry.
* CowardlyBoss: Koji Shindo from the second game
** Also from the second game, Sengoku. He doesn't even fight, he has his pet tigers take on Kazuma.
** The third Game has [[spoiler:Hamazaki]] who lets Lau and his henchman fight his own war. [[TheUnfought You don't even fight him!]]
** [[spoiler: Munakata]] in the forth game. While Kiryu, Akiyama, and Saejima have one-on-one boss fights with their enemies, Tanimura has to deal with [[spoiler: half a dozen elite police forces while Munakata runs around and shoots him with his pistol.]]
* CurbStompBattle: You might as well not even bother trying to fight the Dragon of Dojima if you're a nameless thug, because you *will* be sent to the infirmary... if you're lucky.
** Sotaro Komaki [[ThatOneBoss WILL]] do this to you unless you abuse cheap moves.
* DatingSim: Every game has had an optional series of [[SideQuest side quests]] where Kazuma could visit the local hostess clubs and woo a collection of lovely ladies for HundredPercentCompletion and some neat bonuses which includes [[ExperiencePoints XP]], sometimes very valuable items, and photo portraits of the women.
** In the second game, Kazuma can also optionally help out the hapless employees of a host club getting screwed over by their boss... by signing on as the newest employee and working to become the Number One Host as a gambit to root out the boss from hiding.
** In the western release of the third game, the whole "hostess club" aspect was cut, which just allowed Kazuma to simply take the girls out for a couple dates, then reap the benefits (no relationship values, expensive hostessing minigame, multiple choice dialogue, etc).
** The hostess clubs return in full in the western release of the fourth game (at least for Akiyama, Tanimura, and Kazuma).
** In Dead Souls, wooing a lady allows you to use her as an escort into the Quarantine Zone. One of the DLCs allows you to change their outfits as well as what gun they use.
* DefeatMeansFriendship: This is pretty much how Kazuma snaps Daigo Dojima out of his hedonistic spree and gets him focused on taking charge of the Tojo Clan. Also applies to Rikiya, Saejima and Majima (although he genuinely enjoys fighting Kazzy).
* DesperationAttack: Normally the Hunt and Kill Heat Action (performed on a prone opponent) is either a head stomp or a kick to the gut. If you use it while Kazuma's health is low enough for the meter to blink red however, instead Kazuma straddles the opponent and starts punching away, at which point you can [[ActionCommand keep spamming the Square Button]] ForMassiveDamage.
* DevelopingDoomedCharacters: One of the most criticized aspects of the third game is that the beginning (and one point in the middle) is spent taking care of the Sunsine Orphanage's children and their minimal problems, as opposed to the dealings and conflicts of the Japanese mafia, which is the main hook of the series.
* DisproportionateRetribution: Shimano in a [[YouHaveFailedMe you failed me]] moment cuts the fingers of his underling for losing to Kazuma and getting shot by Shinji in the first game. but again this is a Yakuza game so no surprise here.
--> '''Shimano:''' Let me see your hand for just a second..
** [[JustifiedTrope Actually]], this is a common punishment among [[RealLife Yakuza]], and is as symbolic as the physical punishment is painful.Cutting off one's fingers decreases one's ability to grip a sword effectively, making him more dependent on the group.
** [[spoiler: The entire plot of Dead Souls is this in a nutshell. Kiryu and Goda aren't too pleased.]]
* DisappearedDad: Hanaya/Kage to Takashi. [[spoiler:And Kawara to Kaoru in the second game.]]
* {{DLC}}:
** Appears on all main PS3 games. In the USA, the DLC is free! (Well, save for Yakuza 3.) Dead Souls even offer up rare items that can't be obtained until MUCH later!
* TheDragon: This was in fact Kazuma's title and position (The Dragon of Dojima) before circumstances sent him to prison in the first game.
* DrunkenMaster: It's a very bad idea to pick a fight with Kazuma. It's an even WORSE idea to pick a fight with Kazuma ''when he's drunk'': while drunk, his Heat meter recharges faster, and he even has some special(not to mention BONE SHATTERING) moves that he can only do while drunk. You will probably spend lots of yen just getting him hammered or buying alcohol to go to always make sure you have a little extra oomph.
** Which is ironic since the game makes confrontations with {{Mooks}} more likely when Kazuma's buzzed.
* DualWielding: Hayashi from the second game.
** And one of the available styles in ''Kenzan!'', a no-brainer considering that Kiryu is [[spoiler:also MiyamotoMusashi]].
** Lau Ka Long in the first game also takes up a pair of swords after receiving a good amount of physical damage.
** Prisoner #1356 carries a pair of forks this way.
** Kamiyama, the weapons master, actually wields Kali sticks during the arena matches. And he's fairly tough!
* DubNameChange: Shintarou Kazama becomes Shintarou Fuma for the US release. [[spoiler: Ditto for his younger brother in the third game.]] Also, Nishikiyama was shortened to Nishiki.
** In addition, Hanaya was called Kage, although the second game referred to this specific DubNameChange by adding the title "Florist." ''Hanaya'' is literally the Japanese word for "florist".
** Interestingly, the Western release of the fourth game averts this trope and refers to almost everyone by their Japanese names (the only exception is Kage, who is referred to as "Florist" in the subtitles).
* DudeWheresMyRespect: Played straight and subverted. Only once in a blue moon does Kazuma's insane reputation prevent a fight or frighten an enemy. Despite being one of the most dangerous alive, nearly every goon and boss in Japan is still gunning for him in spite or because of his reputation.
** And this is played with in the second game. [[spoiler:In a sidequest, Kazuma finds out that a couple of clowns have been shaking down goods and services from people by masquerading as him and his late buddy [[DeadPersonImpersonation Shinji Tanaka]]. Rarely in video game history has there been such an instance of [=NPCs=] [[HoistByHisOwnPetard invoking]] a CurbstompBattle on [[TooDumbToLive themselves.]]]]
** Played with in ''3'': part of the beginning tutorial is a gang of mooks working for the ''Fuma'' Clan, Kazuma's original outfit. Like all other mooks, they pick a fight with Kazuma just for shits and giggles. After beating them within an inch of their life, their boss shows up and chastises them for not bowing to the Tojo Clan's Fourth Chairman. The mooks are [[MassOhCrap HORRIFIED.]]
** Pretty well averted in 4 and Dead Souls, whose multi-character gameplay (with Kiryu being the last character) allows him to be presented as more of a larger-than-life character from the perspectives of other characters. Additionally, many of his random encounters in 4 are people attacking him knowing that if they should take down the Dragon of Dojima, their own reputations will skyrocket. Still SuicidalOverconfidence, but it's SuicidalOverconfidence out of ''respect''.
* DulcineaEffect: Men are falling over themselves to protect Lily in 4, though everyone does have their own reasons. Doesn't change the fact that only one of the main characters has known her for more than a week.
* EvenEvilHasStandards: [[spoiler:At the end of Chapter 12 in the second game, Kazuma chases Sengoku up the Golden Palace past an army of {{Samurai}}-clad {{Mooks}}- and even a pair of tigers- to his office after he kidnapped Haruka as a ploy to lure Kazuma into an ambush. Sengoku is quite surprised to see Ryuji Goda waiting there for them all with a [[KatanasAreJustBetter katana]] over his shoulder. After commiserating with Kazuma's plight, Goda responds to Sengoku's mouthing off by cutting a deep gash in his chest. At that point, Ryuji makes it clear abducting Haruka was in poor taste. That might have been it if Sengoku actually had common sense and kept quiet. Instead, he [[TooDumbToLive spits out]] that Ryuji only got far because of his [[{{Nepotism}} father]]. Ryuji [[YouWouldntLikeMeWhenImAngry had enough of Sengoku at that point]], stabbing him with the katana and pushing him to the balcony before kicking him off the top of the Golden Palace. He then lets Kazuma leave with Haruka, but makes it clear that there would be a huge brawl between the Omi and the Tojo in one day.]]
* EvilCounterpart: Ryuji Goda from the second game.
** From the first game, Akira Nishiki, who basically cracked under the pressure over the years and molded himself into a cold version of what Kazuma would have become (a head of a family of the Tojo) if he hadn't been in prison.
** And the third game has [[spoiler: Yoshitaka Mine, who grew up as an orphan like Kazuma, but without the support of friends like he had, grew up lonely and with a very twisted mentality]].
* EvilFeelsGood: The zombification process in Dead Souls explicitly feels very pleasant, due to the over production of endorphin hormones.
* {{Expy}}: The boss of the Purple Killers in the fourth game is SelfDemonstrating/TheJoker. This is apparent even before you meet him, being described as a guy in a purple suit with an insane smirk. [[spoiler: Then you find out he's killer in clown makeup with mannerisms very similar to Heath Ledger's Joker and... yeah.]]
* ExtremityExtremist: Akiyama and Tanimura in the fourth game are both mild examples. Tanimura's attack on a downed attack is even a crouching punch as opposed to a stomp like everyone else. Their basic combos play it straight, but as they learn new abilities their HEAT actions (and more advenced combos) they branch out considerably.
* EyepatchOfPower: Goro Majima, who pretty much fights [[{{Badass}} Kazuma]] in every game thus far at an even footing.
* FinishingMove: Starting from the second game, knocking down an opponent's health sufficiently in a BossBattle will open up a window of opportunity where you can quickly charge Kazuma's HEAT Meter with rapid button mashes (if it's not filled all ready) to execute a special and often [[ForMassiveDamage devastating]] HEAT Action that will usually drop the unfortunate recepient in one hit.
* {{Flashback}}: The games (Save for Dead Souls) after the first allow someone who never played the past installments to find out the storyline in segments at the opening cemetery scene and using the Reminisce option.
** A small example in ''Dead Souls'': the end credits are a slide show from previous ''Yakuza'' games (save for the one PSP release in Japan), which include cameos from characters in those games (Akira in ''1'', Saejima and Tanimura in ''4''.) (Note: the part where flashbacks to ''Kenzan!'' [[NoExportForYou may not make sense to non-Japanese gamers.]])
* ForMassiveDamage: Kazuma dishes these out on a fairly regular basis, often requiring ActionCommands to properly brutalize an opponent with either a weapon in hand or using the scenery itself.
* ForgottenFallenFriend: [[spoiler: Shinji Tanaka from the first game and especially Rikiya from the third game. Despite both being TheLancer, neither of them get a mention in the following game, outside of the Reminisce menu.]]
* FriendToAllChildren: Nothing brings out Kazuma's good side like kids, especially his kids from the orphanage and his adopted niece Haruka. Subsequently, nothing brings out Kazuma's [[UnstoppableRage BAD side]] [[PapaWolf like someone hurting a kid]]. [[CurbStompBattle The most savage and satisfying beatings Kazuma's rained on someone]] are those in retaliation for abusing a kid.
* FrothyMugsOfWater: Ukyo Tatsuya of the Kurohyou series cannot drink booze with hostesses since he is below drinking age of 18/19 (in the sequel). The hostess clubs offers non alcoholic alternatives for him and his hostess though from premium cola to fresh fruit juice and in the sequel, virgin cocktails.
* GameWithinAGame: The Club Sega branches will always have a UFO Catcher skill crane and even playable video game machines. These can serve as part of a SideQuest.
** Yakuza 5 will even have a VirtuaFighter 2 machine!
* GameplayAndStorySegregation: Only in cutscenes does Kazuma suffer an actual injury that would cripple him.
* GatlingGood: Ryuji Goda in ''Of The End/Dead Souls'' sports a cybernetic ArmCannon from the [[VideoGame/FinalFantasyVII Barrett Wallace]] Collection.
* GoryDiscretionShot: In the third game, [[spoiler: the severed head (or body part) of Tsuyoshi Kanda]] is never seen on camera when [[spoiler:Mine]] brings it to Kazuma and company.
* GoOutWithASmile: [[spoiler: Ryuji Goda in a surprisingly heartwarming scene.]]
* GratuitousEnglish: Since the games have used the Japanese voices since Yakuza 2, [[spoiler: Andre Richardson]] in 3's the only major character who speaks in English.
* GunsAkimbo: Several regular bosses, most notably Arase and super boss hitman Amon Jou in classic John Woo style. Which makes it all the more badass when they are beaten to death by fists and feet (if the player chooses).
** This is Shun Akiyama's default weapon configuration in ''Of The End/Dead Souls''. After you wooed a hotess, you can have them wield double pistols.
** Averted in Amon Jou's case in ''Kenzan!'', as he uses a sword there.
* HollywoodHealing: Most main characters, and even mooks to an extent, regularly survive beatings that would kill most men ten times over. It's especially obvious when you use a triple katana slice or pistol on a lowly purse snatcher... and they live.
** Even moreso in ''Kenzan!'', where the sword combos can be ''way'' longer...
* HeroicBloodshed: ''Ryu ga Gotoku'' has a lot in common with Heroic Bloodshed movies in terms of thematic elements.
* HeroicSacrifice: So many. There's an instance of TakingTheBullet pretty much once per game.
* HeyItsThatVoice
** For the English version of the first game:
*** As was stated earlier, Majima is [[MarkHamill The Joker]] and Nishiki is [[{{Smallville}} Lex Luthor]].
*** Yumi is [[Series/BuffyTheVampireSlayer Faith]] and [[{{Dollhouse}} Echo]].
*** Shimano is [[ReservoirDogs Vic Vega]] and [[KillBill Budd]].
*** Reina is [[{{Psych}} Abigail Lytar]].
*** Sera is [[Series/{{Lost}} Charles Widmore]].
*** Hanaya/Kage is [[Series/TheATeam that crazy foo Murdock]].
*** Haruka is [[TenchiMuyo Ryo-Ohki]] and [[TheAdventuresOfJimmyNeutron Jimmy Neutron]].
*** Date is {{Goofy}} and [[HarveyBirdmanAttorneyAtLaw Secret Squirrel]].
*** Kazama/Fuma is [[ThePowerpuffGirls Mojo Jojo]].
*** [[spoiler:Jingu is [[NoMoreHeroes Travis Touchdown]] and [[StarWarsCloneWars Cham Syndulla]].]]
** For the Japanese cast:
*** [[TakayaKuroda Kazuma]] is [[{{Transformers}} Starscream]] and [[WarriorsOrochi Hanzo Hattori.]]
*** [[RieKugimiya Haruka]] is [[{{Persona 4}} Rise Kujikawa]], [[Manga/FullmetalAlchemist Alphonse Elric]] and [[ShakuganNoShana Shana.]]
*** [[KoichiYamadera Akiyama]] is [[Anime/CowboyBebop Spike Spiegel]] and DonaldDuck.
*** [[RikiyaKoyama Saejima]] is [[VideoGame/MarvelVsCapcom3 Frank West]] and {{Wolverine}}.
*** [[KazuyaNakai Hasabe]] is [[SamuraiChamploo Mugen]], [[SengokuBasara Masamune Date]], and [[Manga/OnePiece Roronoa Zoro]].
*** [[AkioOhtsuka The Minister of Defense]] is [[Franchise/MetalGear Solid Snake.]]
*** [[AyaHirano Hana]] is LightNovel/HaruhiSuzumiya and [[LuckyStar Konata.]]
* HiddenDepths: While Kazuma's fists bring justice to man, his voice will shake your soul.
* HideYourChildren: Averted in the third game, not only with the Sunshine Orphanage kids, but other kids as well can be seen walking around Downtown Ryukubu.
* HonorBeforeReason: SO MUCH.
* IKnowMaddenKombat: In the second game, Kazuma can gain improved Strong Attacks and later improved Heat Actions with the baseball bat, golf club and bowling ball by playing enough times at the batting cage, driving range and bowling alley respectively then completing the related SideQuest for each location. By the next game, by refighting bosses, he can 'learn' new techniques, such as using knuckles.
* IdiotBall: Let's just say that protagonists' IQs drop considerably whenever a gun comes into play.
* ImpaledPalm: An uncommon HEAT action in Yakuza 3 and 4 when Kazuma is holding a knife near a wall is to throw the mook at the wall, then stabs his hand against the wall.
* IrrelevantSidequest: Just about the most irrelevant in the gaming industry. It's half the fun.
* KingpinInHisGym: in the third game Mine appears kickboxing with a sandbag in a cutscene because the game wants you to know that he's no pushover. [[spoiler: Which you end up learning by yourself since he is the FinalBoss]].
* KnifeNut: Goro Majima. Tamashiro licks his knife in his introduction sequence, but he does better with knuckles.
* KungFoley: Kazuma's stronger punches- particularly with one of his CounterAttack moves or when he uses the DesperationAttack- have a deep bass echo to convey just how brutally powerful they are.
* TheLancer: Shinji Tanaka in the first game, Daigo Dojima in the second, Rikiya Shimabukuro in the third.
* LaserGuidedKarma: Kazuma helping out the fun-loving crazy old lady in the second game will not only give him the obligatory SideQuest [[ExperiencePoints XP]], it'll also give him access to some useful combat skills. [[spoiler:Which becomes self-explanatory when it's revealed that the fun-loving crazy old lady is in fact [[RetiredBadAss Lau Ka Long's former martial arts instructor]].]]
* LimitBreak: The Heat moves.
* LoanShark: Shun Akiyama from Yakuza 4 operates as one. Subverted in that he loans out money with no interest or collateral, as long that the recipient [[SecretTestOfCharacter passes one of his tests]]. Many of his random encounters are actual loan sharks who want Akiyama to stop, since he's encroaching on their territory.
* LostInTranslation: Majima is quite fond of calling our hero "''Kiyru-chan''", or "''Kazuma-chan''" in the American dub. In Japan, the only time that a man would ever call another man by the effeminate suffix ''-chan'' is 1.) they are close family or childhood friends, or 2.) as a diminutive insult. The original Japanese games make "''Kiyru-chan''" sound affectionate (even more so when you consider Kiryu addresses Majima as "Onii-san", or 'big brother'); the American dub of the first game makes "''Kazuma-chan''" sound more diminutive.
** The english subtitles starting from the second game has Majima calling Kazuma "Kazzy" which not only is a more approximate term of endearment but also might reference MarkHamill having voiced Majima in the U.S. release of the first game.
* LoveInterest: Yumi Sawamura in the first one, Kaoru Sayama in the second.
* AMacGuffinFullOfMoney: The 10 Billion Yen that goes missing from the Tojo Clan in the first game. By extension Haruka (or more specifically, her locket), as people quickly realize she's the key to the missing money.
* ManBehindTheMan: Pretty much at least one per game. [[UpToEleven Some games go trigger-happy with his trope. Literally.]]
* ManlyTears: Kazuma actually sheds these when [[spoiler:Rikiya]] dies. You know from this moment on that someone is [[RoaringRampageOfRevenge GOING TO FUCKING DIE.]]
* MoodWhiplash: Between the serious HeroicBloodshed main stories, utterly insane IrrelevantSidequests, and ComicallySerious protagonist, this is a huge part of the appeal of the series. The contrast between how serious the games' storyline is and how STUPID the sidequests can be is mindblowing. It's hard to believe Kazuma can be fighting for his life against the most bloodthirsty gangsters in the world in one mission, and then running from a lovesick transvestite in another.
* {{Mooks}}: An endless horde of thugs, gangbangers and Yakuza endlessly harass Kazuma with their tough talk and cruel actions. He is not impressed.
* MuggingTheMonster: The thugs constantly trying to beat up/extort the main characters as they walk down the street have no idea what they're getting into. In Tanimura or Akiyama's case, that's somewhat forgivable as neither of them look anywhere near as strong as they are. Well-built, clearly-a-Yakuza Kazuma and built-like-a-brick-shithouse-on-steroids Saejima, on the other hand....
* MundaneMadeAwesome: Revelations.
** In the third and fourth games, Kazuma and Akiyama have mad blogging skillz.
** And in the fourth, Saejima's epic woodcarving.
* MysteriousInformant: Kage the Florist, although he's not really all that mysterious. Just well-connected.
* NeverBringAKnifeToAFistFight: Because first, it won't do any good. And second, Kazuma will then use it on your friends.
** Guns won't be any better either, especially once Kazuma has mastered the Komaki Shot Stopper. He'll deflect your aim off, then proceed to beat the shit out of you.
*** On the other hand, if its Kazuma bringing the weaponry, massive damage ensues. Crude Pistols will one-shot weaker enemies and the shotgun one hit kills all but the end game mooks. Not to mention the brutal attacks he can pull off with melee weaponry....
** Averted in Dead Souls, it's [[PaperFanOfDoom (usually)]] impossible to kill a zombie with melee attacks, and Kiryu has a rough time when he [[spoiler: goes into the quarantine zone without any weapons.]]
* NiceGuy: Kazuma missed his calling in life as the Patron Saint of Niceness. He helps any innocent bystander no matter how big or small the problem, rescues young girls, pets, old women crossing the street, and forgives men who try to kill him on several occasions at the slightest hint of their redemption. This makes his status as the entire underworld's ButtMonkey so far as picking fights go all the more hilarious. In 3, he goes so far as to track down the most dangerous hitmen in Japan... JUST to beat the crap out of them and drag them to a reform center so they can get out of the criminal life.
* NoExportForYou: The four main games have all seen Western releases. The same cannot be said about ''Kenzan!'' and ''Black Panther'', two spin-off titles. However, ZombieApocalypse spin-off ''Of The End'' has been confirmed for a Western release at least. It's coming over as ''Yakuza: Dead Souls'', averting this trope.
* NobleDemon: Ryuji Goda. See EvenEvilHasStandards above.
* OhCrap: If you pull out a weapon in the middle of a heated random encounter battle or finish off the penultimate enemy, your enemie(s) may suddenly panic and start to back off. Kiryu even has a HEAT action against scared enemies holding weapons.
* OldMaster: Sotaro Komaki. And when you can actually fight him in a tournament, [[ThatOneBoss he will show you just why he is the Old Master.]]
* OldSaveBonus: Starting a file for the second game in a card with the files from the first nets Kazuma a bonanza of items, most of which Haruka gave to him in the first game to indicate his KarmaMeter progression and comprise of one-shot healing items and accessories that affect his stats.
** In ''Yakuza 3'' (may be JP version only), having a ''Kenzan!'' save file will net you Ukiyo's Bell, an exclusive protective item.
** 4 and Dead Souls offer up items if you played the last game. 3 gives you a armor and a accessory that restores HP over time and 4 nets you a item that offers high defense and charm.
* OneHitPointWonder: The Artful Dodger. After all, all you got to do is to hit him just once.
* OneManArmy: Kazuma. In the course of three games he was able to fight alone against almost everything, from entire yakuza families to triads to trained military personnel and even rogue CIA agents.
* TheOnlyOneAllowedToDefeatYou: [[spoiler:Goro Majima pretty much gives the as the reason why he took a knife meant for Kazuma in the gut... right after coldcocking the underling who used the aformentioned knife. ]]
* PapaWolf: Do not mess with little Haruka, Kazuma's adoptive daughter, if you value your life.
** And in ''3'', don't mess with ANY of Kazuma's kids. It counts against your life expectancy.
* PaperFanOfDoom: Ryuji gets to use this ''of all things'' to fend off various mutated zombies in ''Of The End/Dead Souls'', when trapped in a gas leak. Literally played straight, as it only takes ''a few hits'' to kill what could've taken lots of bullets, and has infinite durability
* PlayingAgainstType: In the English version of the first game, Bill Farmer- best known as the voice of Goofy- gives a rather remarkable and down-to-earth serious performance as Detective Makoto Date.
* PreAssKickingOneLiner: Near the end of the first game, Kazuma and Haruka are about to head for the Millennium Tower to locate her mother and the missing Tojo money. Suddenly pedestrians clear the street and they're surrounded by an armed mob. Kazuma reassures Haruka that he'll get her to her mother, then turns around to stare down the mob and let them know what's coming:
-->'''Kazuma''': [[SuicidalOverconfidence So you're ready for me?]] [[BringIt Then step the fuck up]], it's time to ''[[TranquilFury die]]''.
* PressXToNotDie: [[spoiler: You have to press a button on your last attack against the final boss of Ryu ga Gotoku 2. If you don't, well...]]
* ProductPlacement: A surprising amount and remarkably they tend to avert EnforcedPlug for the most part, making contextual sense where they do appear.
** The Don Quijote discount stores than can be visited are based on an [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Don_Quijote_(store) actual chain in Japan]], as well as in Hawaii.
** The Suntory group also has prominent placement, ranging from soft drinks like Boss iced coffee all the way to premium brand-name liquor that they have distribution rights to in Japan, including Jack Daniels Tennessee whiskey.
** The [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ryu_Ga_Gotoku#Tie-in_and_product_placement Other Wiki]] has more specific details on the Product Placements.
* PsychoForHire: Goro Majima. [[spoiler:To the point where you hire him in the second game, and it's real nice to have him on your side this time.]]
* RangedEmergencyWeapon: In Dead Souls, Pistol ammo is infinite, making a Pistol a RangedEmergencyWeapon for most characters (except for Akiyama, whose primary weapon is a pistol). But as the first character in the game this works to soften the learning curve by making ammo not much of an issue until later).
* RatedMForManly: The Series itself, being that nearly anyone is capable of pulling off [=CMOAs=] at the drop of a hat.
* RedemptionEqualsDeath: While not wholly repentant, [[spoiler:Nishiki]] died avenging someone he cared about. Ditto [[spoiler: Mine in the third game]]. Also [[spoiler: Hamazaki]] in Yakuza 4.
* ReformedCriminal: Possibly a few examples in the games, but in particular Hanaya/Kage. In the first game he had been a former police intelligence officer who was busted by Date for selling some of the information he gathered and ended up becoming the de facto ruler of Purgatory while continuing to sell information. In the second game, it turns out that the police contracted him for his abilities and he left Purgatory in the charge of CrazyAwesome Goro Majima to move his base of operations to the Millennium Tower.
* RivalTurnedEvil: Akira Nishiki, childhood friend of Kazuma who, after a series of tragic events, really changed during the years Kazuma was in jail for [[spoiler: a murder that Nishiki himself committed - granted, he had a good reason.]]
* RoaringRampageOfRevenge: Played most straight in ''Dead Souls,'' when Kazuma enters the quarantine zone to confront those that kidnapped Haruka... and proceeds to fight zombies. Unarmed.
* RuthlessForeignGangsters: Kiryu has to fight Korean gangsters/terrorists in the second game as well as the other yakuza.
** And in the first game, Kazuma also has to rescue Haruka from Lau Ka Long's [[TheTriadsAndTheTongs Snake Flower Triad]].
** The third one has [[spoiler:Black Monday, a weapons dealing syndicate headed by corrupt CIA operatives.]]
* ScaryBlackMan: Gary "Buster" Holmes, although only in the ring. Outside of it he's a rather amicable GentleGiant.
** [[spoiler:And in ''Of the End/Dead Souls'', Gary is your personal Drill Instructor for Zombie Killer Boot Camp.]]
* ScrewTheMoneyIHaveRules: Pretty common, with Daigo refusing a land deal in 3 because it would inconvenience Kiryu, and the entire main cast (especially Akiyama) [[spoiler: throwing away 100 billion yen to figure out who was pulling the strings and bring them to justice.]]
* SequenceBreaking: In ''Dead Souls'', you can download a free DLC that allows you to pick up rare crafting materials as soon as you leave the quarantine zone. With this, you can make/upgrade weapons/armor a lot sooner than normally.
* SerialEscalation: [[spoiler: Tiger punching.]]
** For a game that repeatedly escalates, the zombie apocalypse in ''Of The End'' shatters every known perception of possibility.
* SignatureSoundEffect: The loud echoing crack that rings each time Kazuma delivers a finishing blow to the last opponent in a combat round... even if it's just a simple straight punch to a [[SuicidalOverconfidence suicidally overconfident]] and [[OneHitPointWonder fragile]] twerp.
* ShoutOut: Ryu ga Gotoku 2 contained references to the previous game, AshitaNoJoe, SEGA, the PS3 cat and even Film/TheMatrix (the "Man in black").
** [[spoiler: It could be argued that the MindScrew ManBehindTheMan reveal towards the end is a veiled reference to VideoGame/MetalGearSolid.]]
** Also, Kazuma can learn various techniques after helping out and sparring with wrestler "Cyclops" Oba, who is likely a reference to Japanese wrestling legend "Giant" Baba.
** Snake Flower Triad leader Lau Ka Long is patterned after [[VirtuaFighter Lau Chan]], with a few shades of [[{{Shenmue}} Lan Di]].
*** In the same vein, the fourth installment introduces Daisaku Minami, a drunken boxer who has a few moves directly lifted from [[VirtuaFighter Shun Di]] complete with appropriate sound effect.
** ''Of the End/Dead Souls'' has a couple of nods to the live action movie: Majima's firearm of choice is a shotgun, and one of the Team Heat Actions has him hitting a target with a line drive... except in ''Of the End/Dead Souls'' he uses his SPAS-12 as a baseball bat and the "ball" happens to be a grenade that a Super Zombie [[Franchise/ResidentEvil B.O.W.]] swallows to predictable result.
** In this trailer[[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QzE-Usa5kkc]] and footage[[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MewAJegsPOE]] has quite a few to other survivor horrors and combat ops; if you look among which a couple [[Left4Dead of hunters and a tank]], [[SilentHill flashlight segments and the changes to the Kamurocho district]], [[MetalSlug available attack vehicles to use]],[[spoiler:a room with [[Franchise/ResidentEvil Lickers]], a [[HouseOfTheDead team up in a room with the chapter's]] [[LoadBearingBoss behemoth zombie]] ]], just from what is shown.
** If one manages to look closely, Andre Richardson ([[spoiler:Black Monday's leader, a crooked CIA agent and one of the [[BigBad Big Bads]] of ''3'']]) looks suprisingly similar to [[Franchise/ResidentEvil Albert Wesker]]. Many a fan have indulged in calling him "[[FanNickname Wesker Jr.]]"
* ShownTheirWork: According to actual Yakuza who played it, it's not wildly off the mark, and most of the inaccuracies fall under AcceptableBreaksFromReality.
* SimulationGame: The second game plays with this a bit, as an optional sidequest where saving the owner of the hostess club Marietta from {{Mook}} harassment opens up the opportunity to run the place with the aim of trying to make it profitable while the owner attends to family illness.
* SinisterSurveillance: Inverted. Kamurocho has a ''very'' extensive surveillance network installed, that seems to be able to note every square inch of the city inside buildings well as out and includes the ability to zoom in and presumably enhance images. Hanaya/Kage uses it as his primary tool to gather information for clients and to help out Kazuma at certain instances.
* SniperRifle: As of ''Dead Souls/Of The End'' Kazuma is carrying an '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Barrett_M82 M-107]]''' which also counts as a {{BFG}}.
* SociopathicHero: Goro Majima. Although an antagonist in the first game, it was actually because of circumstances and [[TheOnlyOneAllowedToDefeatYou his rivalry with Kazuma for the title of the underworld's biggest badass.]] He is actually MAD loyal to Kazuma, and very protective of the men under him... as long as they don't piss him off, in which case he'll break their face badly. In every game from the second one on, he's been an ally of Kazuma's.
** Theories abound that there's also a... [[HoYay certain context]] to Majima's loyalty to Kazuma.
** More like Kazuma is the only person [[TheDeterminator durable]] enough to stand up to his psychotic rage.
* SpoilerOpening: In Yakuza 3, [[spoiler: Mine is shown to be NotSoStoic in the opening video, which would be a surprise considering his seemingly low-importance for most of the game.]]
* SuicidalOverconfidence: "[[MuggingTheMonster Hey, we're having a pretty bad day, so we need to take out our aggression on you.]] [[GenreBlind Huh? Why you looking at us funny?]] [[HilarityEnsues You wanna die, old man?!]]"
* StatusQuoIsGod: A small example: Akiyama's overweight secretary Hana becomes a [[BeautifulAllAlong gorgeous bombshell through dieting]] by the events of ''4's'' end. She ends up returning to her old body type by ''Dead Souls.'' She's actually back to her old body type by the non-canon [[NewGamePlus Premium Adventure Mode]], but when/if that actually takes place isn't clear.
* TakingTheBullet: Pretty much at least [[OncePerEpisode once per game.]]
* TattooedCrook: Given that the game series deals heavily with the subject of Yakuza this is ''de rigeur''. The tattoos on the main characters (Kazuma- Blue Dragon, Nishiki- Carp, Majima- Oni, Goda- Gold Dragon, Mine- Kirin, Rikiya- Viper, Daigo- Fudo Miyou, Saejima- Tiger) turn out to be very symbolic in the games and are often reflective of their personalities and traits.
* ThouShaltNotKill: Beating the crap out of dozens of people? Forgivable. One lowly punk getting shot/stabbed to death? SeriousBusiness. Like, clan-war serious. This may come off as ValuesDissonance for people used to western crime dramas, but remember that guns (and thus, gun violence) are a lot rarer in Japan, plus yakuza are ''really'' political.
** Unless they're [[WhatMeasureIsAMook foreigners]] in which case you can gun them down without remorse. Ditto zombies.
* TinyHeadedBehemoth: The Meat Head enemy ''Yakuza: Dead Souls'' has a ridiculously buff, armored upper body, with his only weakness being his normal-sized head and the surrounding tissue.
* TrueCompanions: By the endgame of ''4'', Kazuma has formed a companionship with Shun Akiyama, Taiga Saejima and Masayoshi Tanimura. A more impressive collection of bonafide badasses will be hard to find.
* TurnCoat: So far, apart from [[TheLancer Shinji Tanaka]], significant individuals in the Nishiki Family are doomed to this role.
* TwoGuysAndAGirl: Kazuma, Nishiki, and Yumi in the first game pretty much fits this trope, especially as the story went by.
* VideoGameCrueltyPotential: Of the Enemies only type. Sure, the various mooks and bosses Kazuma meet are either punks or scum but did they really need to suffer that badly by various brutal heat actions? Of course, it is kind of their fault for provoking him in the first place.
* TheUnfought: [[spoiler:Hamazaki]] in the third game.
** Unless you download a certain DLC.
* WalkingArmory: Taiga Saejima made his debut by using more guns than anyone else in the entire series: six at once! Two in either hand, two in his pockets, one in his belt, and one in his teeth. 36 bullets to wipe out an entire branch of an enemy clan. In Japan, where guns are rare to begin with, this is ''ludicrous.''
* WeaponOfChoice: In ''Dead Souls/Of The End'', each of the four playable characters have one primary firearm that they use as their default weapon.
** Kazuma, as stated above, has an anti-armor [[ColdSniper sniper rifle]].
** Akiyama brandishes [[GunsAkimbo two pistols]].
** Majima has a [[ShotgunsAreJustBetter pump-action shotgun.]]
** Ryuji's main firearm is actually one of his arms, [[GatlingGood which transforms into a gatling gun.]]
* WhamEpisode: Chapter 11 of the third game. [[spoiler: Sunshine Orphanage is bulldozed by Mine and the Tamashiro family, Mikio is almost killed via a sledgehammer to the skull, Nakahara is captured and thrown into a bullring, Saki finds her voice at last, [[CrowningMomentOfAwesome the Tamashiro family and it's bulls get a collective ass-whooping]], and Rikiya [[HeroicSacrifice heroically takes a bullet]] meant for Kazuma and dies.]] The last one is particuarly shocking, as [[spoiler: Rikiya]] is the only ally in the entire game [[spoiler: who dies]].
* WhatHappenedToTheMouse: Averted with [[spoiler: Hamazaki]] in the third game.
** Yet played straight in the same game with [[spoiler:Rikiya's childhood's friend]]. The side mission where he finds her working in a pole dancing club is treated like a main mission, with cutscene and all. [[spoiler:Rikiya promises to take her out of this life style for good]], but he ends up [[spoiler:dead in the end]], but the [[spoiler:girl]] is never brought up in the main storyline, and how [[spoiler:she feels about her White Knight being dead]] is left unknown.
* WideOpenSandbox: Kamurocho in general, and other locations as the series goes on.
* WouldntHitAGirl: Imposed by the games on the player; Kazuma will never find himself in a situation where he must (or can) strike a woman. On the rare occassions where he is tracking or is attacked by a woman, it will always turn out to be a [[GenderBender guy in drag]].
** [[spoiler:Which is hilariously subverted in a SideQuest in the first game. Refusing to go into a Hotel for some "fun" with a woman results in her calling her thug brother in an attempt to pummel Kazuma. After the obligatory trashing ensues, it's then revealed that the siblings are [[GenderBender Gender Benders]], with the "woman" being [[DudeLooksLikeALady male]] and the thug "brother" being the actual female.]]
** [[spoiler: The end result of the Michiru substory in 3 reveals that the 'guy' you originally rescued 'her' from? That was a post-op man.]]
** The lack of female opponents is somewhat averted in 4. While helping her out with her investigation, Tanimura takes up a female Korean cop named Nair who's in Japan chasing a Korean criminal as a sparring partner. She's the only female opponent in the game, though, and neither one of them have any intention on holding back on each other.
** Finally averted in Dead Souls, which has female zombies, including special mutants that are exclusively female.
* WrestlerInAllOfUs: Pretty much everyone in all the games, actually, but special mention goes to Saejima and [[spoiler: Yoshitaka Mine in the third game, who gives the BigBad a Dragon Suplex ''off a thirty story building''.]]
** Kiryu has a wrestler handle: Dragon Mask.
* XMeetsY: ''Of The End/Dead Souls'' is basically Left4Dead meets VideoGame/RyuGaGotoku with a bit of Franchise/ResidentEvil.
* ZombieApocalypse: ''Of The End/Dead Souls''. Yes, a Yakuza game [[OutOfGenreExperience features zombies]]. Somewhat subverted in that the outbreak is contained to Kamurocho and is thus not a truly global ZombieApocalypse.
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[[quoteright:300:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/yakuza-sega_2806.jpg]]
[[caption-width-right:300:Kazuma Kiryu apparently finds the description fascinating]]

->'''M''': Kiryu is [[GloryDays the way yakuza used to be]]. [[HonorAmongThieves We kept the streets clean. People liked us. We didn't bother ordinary citizens. We respected our bosses]]. Now, guys like that only exist in video games.\\
'''S''': I don't know any ex-yakuza running orphanages.\\
'''K''': There was one a few years ago. A good guy.\\
'''M''': You sure it wasn't [[LegitimateBusinessmensSocialClub just a tax shelter?]]\\
'''K''': [[HypocrisyNod Sure it was a tax shelter]] but he ran it like a legitimate thing. You know.
-->-[[http://www.boingboing.net/2010/08/10/yakuza-3-review.html Real Yakuza gangsters review the game]].

'''''Ryu ga Gotoku''''' (''Like a Dragon''), or '''''Yakuza''''' as it's known in America, is a video game brawler series for the [=PS2=] and [=PS3=]. The first game follows the story of Kazuma Kiryu (桐生 一馬, Kiryū Kazuma), the "Dragon of Dojima," a former Yakuza whose release from prison after a 10-year sentence sparks the setup of the first game's plot. After his release, Kazuma returns and finds that his friend is missing and the clan to which he once belonged (the Tojo Clan) has had 10 billion yen (approx. $100 million US) stolen from them, and the entire Japanese underworld is now searching for the money. The game was heavily acclaimed in Japan for being the first game to explore Yakuza culture with such depth and ''as it is claimed'' authenticity to the nature of Japan's criminal underground (info from Wikipedia).

The series is basically old school BeatEmUp with a [[WideOpenSandbox sandbox setting]] and [[{{RPG}} RPG elements]]. While you can just follow the story and play it as a straightforward beat 'em up, there are TONS of sidequests, minigames and secrets to do and find, many of them quite challenging, unique, even funny sometimes. Players can help people on the street with myriad problems, find hidden illegal gambling halls to play in, go to the batting cage to hit a few balls or find an [[OldMaster enigmatic martial artist]] to learn many powerful moves from. And in good ol' {{Shonen}} / {{Seinen}} series fashion, there's even underground fighting tournaments to participate in, complete with a caged arena. The amount of things to do in the games is mindblowing.

Fighting enemies earns you experience points to gain new moves to punish them with, and you can also learn new moves by doing sidequests. There's also tons of items and equipment to find, and you can even create your own. The series is considered by many players to be the spiritual successor to ''{{Shenmue}}'', and is also compared to such classic old-school series as ''StreetsOfRage'' and ''RiverCityRansom''.

There have been four games in the main series, with ''Ryu ga Gotoku 4'' currently available in Japan and North America and Europe. There's also a spin-off called ''Ryu ga Gotoku Kenzan!'' that takes place in feudal Japan, starring Kiryu Kazuma-no-suke. A very combat-oriented PSP spinoff called ''Kurohyou: Ryu ga Gotoku Shinshou'' focuses on the life of underground fighter Ukyou Tatsuya. The spin-off featuring characters from the main series, ''Ryu ga Gotoku: Of The End''/''Yakuza: Dead Souls'', takes place during an... [[ZombieApocalypse umm... outbreak of the living dead]]. As you may have guessed, this is not canon.

''Ryu ga Gotoku 5'' has been released Japan in December 2012, featuring [[SerialEscalation five different protagonists and cities]]. It received a perfect 40/40 score from ''Famitsu'' magazine, a first for the series. While no announcement for a US release has been made yet, hopefully one will be announced soon.
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!!This game series includes examples of:
* AProtagonistIsRyu - Kazuma Kiryu from obviously, but in a [[SubvertedTrope subversion]], though, his rival in the second game is Ryuji Goda, another dragon-themed character(although he's more a NobleDemon than a full-blown bad guy, and he still exhibits many traits associated with his name).
* AbhorrentAdmirer - in the third game, Kazuma's animal magnetism draws the attention of the DragQueen Michiru, causing 'her' to stalk you through several pulse-pounding chase-scenes. How is it possible to run that fast on high heels? The world may never know...
* ActionCommands - Some of Kazuma's Heat Actions have these to potentially increase their damage (and pain to the unfortunate recepient). And in the second game, these sometimes crop up when Kazuma has to avoid some damaging move, tying in with PressXToNotDie.
* ActionGirl / FairCop: Kaoru Sayama
* ActorAllusion - Two of them in the American release of the first game-
** MarkHamill voices Goro Majima as [[WesternAnimation/BatmanTheAnimatedSeries an unstable, sadomasochistic gangster]] who laughs at pain -- even his own and [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=778VDaSLeX4 is more than willing to kill his own henchmen when they don't get with the program]]. In addition he's so determined to take down Kazuma himself that [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8mjiNzDDTmI he'll stop anyone else who's trying to beat him to the punch]].
** [[{{Smallville}} Michael Rosembaum]] plays Akira Nishiki, Kazuma's childhood friend who after the incident that sends Kazuma to prison turns into a cold, calculating MagnificentBastard who will do almost anything it takes to gain leadership of the Tojo Clan.
* ActuallyFourMooks - Used extensively. Anytime you walk into some random punk on the streets, you may safely assume that he's got anywhere between 1 and 3 buddies hiding somewhere BehindTheBlack, ready to jump in to help him the moment the fighting starts.
** Also used with an amusing twist by a RecurringBoss in the third game, [[spoiler: the AbhorrentAdmirer DragQueen, Michiru]]. His uncanny ability to pop up behind you when you least expect it culminates in a lengthy chase where, every time you think you've shaken him, he appears AGAIN, right in front of you, DaffyDuck style. In the end, it's revealed that [[spoiler: he's actually a team of cross-dressing [[AlwaysIdenticalTwins identical triplets]], and the other two were just chasing you to make sure you 'broke up' with the real Michiru so she could get back together with her Drag-King ex-'boy'friend.]]
* AmazingFreakingGrace: Played over the end credits for the first game.
* AscendedExtra: Koji Shindo was just a lieutenant of the Nishiki Family notable for leading the back alley ambush on Kazuma at Serena in the first game. In the second, he became the Patriarch of the Nishiki Family.
** Hiroshi Hayashi was one of Ryuji Goda's right-hand men in ''2''. In ''Dead Souls'', he's a [[spoiler: ''freaking'' zombie. And not just any zombie. He's the insanely durable zombie (mutant may be a more suitable term for him) who kicks off the zombie outbreak. Granted, he didn't turn into one by will, and wanted to stop Nikaido and DD from whatever their plans were before he was mutated.]]
** Akiyama [[spoiler: is probably the bum who was first shown catching money after the 10 billion yen incident. The facial features are a bit different, though that is likely due to the series' ArtEvolution, and their clothes are different (they wear a different cap), but they are in the exact same location and do the exact same thing (catch a bill, then gather as much as they can).]]
* AuthorityEqualsAsskicking [[spoiler:Kazuma]] taking the title of Chairman of the Tojo Clan. Later [[spoiler:Daigo Dojima]] in future games.
* AwesomeButImpractical: Essence of Pole Dancing in Yakuza 3. Learned by [[ItMakesSenseInContext watching a drunk perform a pole dance on a lamppost]], it does good damage, is an incredibly flashy looking hurricanrana, and... well, was learned by watching a drunk perform a pole dance on a lamppost. However, it uses up your HEAT gauge and far more importantly, instantly removes your drunken status. Also it's very easy to accidentally do when you're trying to perform another HEAT action.
** There's also the other drunk Essence, Essence of Drunken Thrust. Same thing as the one above, but the one upside it has is that it's easier to pull off without doing another HEAT action. Others Essences requires certain environment objects, so during some storyline missions, you won't be able to pull these off.
** A good chunk of the weapons fall into this, especially the Patriarch weapons. High power, but will break in about five swings.
* AwesomenessByAnalysis: The ''Revelation'' mechanic. By witnessing some bizarre and awesome accidents and fights, the heroes can get inspiration for new combat maneuvers.
* AwesomeYetPractical: Essence of Terror, learned from watching a girl deliver tissues at lightening speed. Though it requires 4 enemies, it deals good damage for a multiple enemy HEAT action.
** Essence of Rolling. Easy to pull off (All you got to do is to do a dodge roll) and deals great damage.
* AxCrazy: Goro Majima. Holy crap.
** Kanda in the third game. [[BigBadWannabe But he's more bark than bite]].
* BackFromTheDead: [[spoiler:Lau Ka Long in the third game. Considering he doesn't survive this encounter, this is also a case of BackForTheDead.]]
** [[spoiler:Ryuji]] in ''Of The End/Dead Souls''. [[spoiler:[[WeCanRebuildHim He is now a cyborg]] with an ArmCannon.]]
* {{Badass}}: Kiryu Kazuma
** In fact, nearly anyone who is an ally or associate of Kazuma is a badass in some way.
* BadassCrew: Everyone who supported and helped Kazuma has at least done something awesome to earn this. Two of them being his TrueCompanions in ''4'' (Akiyama, Saejima and Tanimura) and the other playable characters in ''Dead Souls'' (Akiyama again, Goda, Majima)
* BadGuyBar: Deborah in the original is populated solely by people who exist to be beaten up by you.
* BadExportForYou: The US release of ''Yakuza 3'' unfortunately cut some of the features like mahjong and managing a massage parlor. Granted, they didn't do this out of vindictiveness so much as feeling that western gamers just wouldn't get mahjong or how to play shogi. Though losing the DatingSim aspect of the hostess clubs was actually well-received by some players. It did, however, result in the MEB location being little more than a booth decorated with pictures of women. You can still enter the minigames buildings, but they only exist for gaining locker keys and certain sub-stories.
* BatterUp: Goro Majima, in one of his more psycho moments, takes a baseball bat to one of his underlings.
--> '''Majima:''' This is the part where you're SUPPOSED TO LAUGH! [WHACK!] '''[[ClusterFBomb LAUGH YOU STUPID MUTHAFUCKA!]]'''
** The bat's HEAT action first involves hitting the target in the knee, wind up...and HOME RUN TO THE FACE!
* BettingMiniGame: The two hidden (and illegal) Casinos as well as the (also hidden and illegal) Cho-Han Dice Parlor in Kamurocho, although oddly enough they don't offer a direct cash payout, rather relying on a prize exchange system. There's also the Volcano Video Slot Parlor which is more legal and also relies on a prize exchange system for the payoffs.
* BewareTheNiceOnes: The other side of Kazuma, once he has been pushed. Don't push him.
** Akiyama is harder to push (Given his mostly carefree nature) but misuse money or people in any way and he will literally kick your ass to curb.
* BigBad: [[spoiler:Akira Nishiki and Kyohei Jingu in the first one, Kim Taejin and Ryuji Goda in the second, Yoshitaka Mine in the third, Seishiro Munakata in the forth, and Tetsu Nikaido in ''Dead Souls''.]]
** BiggerBad: [[spoiler: Ryo Takashima in the second game; Andre Richardson in the third; Munakata in the fourth, DD in ''Dead Souls''.]]
* BigBadWannabe: The third game introduces Tsuyoshi Kanda, third patriarch of the Nishiki family. He is shown to be short tempered, violent to his men and also seemingly a rapist, and is named as the most likely suspect for [[spoiler: Kashiwagi's murder]]. Then you actually fight him and it's revealed [[spoiler: he's only good at hitting you with furniture, he's too stupid to plan something like an assassination attempt, and the implied rapes are actually ''heavy handed back masssages'', which some of his victims end up liking!]]
** The same game has Hamazaki, who comes closer, [[spoiler: but he vanishes from the plot after Lau's death.]]
* BigDamnVillains: [[spoiler: The apparent BigBad of the third gave saves Rikiya from a beheading. He does the same thing later, but he's a little too late that time.]]
* BitterSweetEnding: The first game may have resulted in Kazuma saving the Tojo from absolute ruin but led [[spoiler: to the death of nearly all his old friends, his mentor/father figure, former best friend, and love interest to the point he was actually willing to go back to jail if Date hadn't snapped him out of it by pointing out he still had Haruka to watch over.]]
** [[spoiler: The third game. While Kiryu is able to stop the smugglers and save the clan, several good people have died in the process.]]
* BloodlessCarnage: In the fourth game, Saejima's murderous rampage at the start of his story has a surprising lack of gunshot wounds on his victims. [[spoiler: [[FridgeBrilliance Which makes perfect sense]] when you later discover he was set up as TheScapegoat by Katsuragi.]]
* BonusBoss: Jo Amon, an assassin who makes an appearance in every game, shows up when certain requirements are fulfilled. In the fourth game, he makes an appearance with his three brothers to take on Kazuma, Akiyama, Saejima and Tanimura. By ''Dead Souls'', he's [[spoiler: outdone by his zombiefied ancestor in Kamurucho's underground (you know, [[BonusDungeon the one full of zombies and mutants waiting to kick your ass]]).]] Players are usually rewarded for defeating him with a GameBreaker, since he's just [[ThatOneBoss that hard to kill.]]
* BreakableWeapons: The series does include a exact counter to how many hits the weapon can take before it breaks. Equipable weapons can be repaired...for a hefty price.
* BullyingADragon: While most random encounters are cases of MuggingTheMonster, many thugs and gangs seek out fights against you knowing full well who you are and thinking they can take you anyway.
* CallToAgriculture: Kazuma's call is to manage a tiny beachfront orphanage with ten kids in it, but it's the same idea: this is his peaceful retirement from a life of crime. Or so he hoped, until ''Yakuza 3'' happened.
* CarFu: In the first game, everyone's favorite PsychoForHire Goro Majima [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-vJH8-_S1Ns literally crashes the party at the Shangri-La soapland with a truck]].
-->'''Majima:''' LET'S FUCK THIS SHIT UUUUUUP!!
** In Yakuza 3 [[spoiler: Majima outdoes himself by being TheCavalry to a surrounded Kazuma, with a semi-truck.]]
*** [[spoiler:[[RealMenWearPink A PINK semi-truck.]]]]
* TheCityNarrows: Purgatory.
* ClusterFBomb: '''Oh my fucking God yes.'''
** Somewhat averted in future games, as the original Japanese dialogue is much tamer compared to the first game, which spews F-bombs any chance it gets.
* ConservationOfNinjutsu: Elite bosses are pretty much the only real threat to Kazuma and company. Mooks exist to be splattered across the curb in spectacular fashion.
* ConversationalTroping: During an early part of ''Of The End''(Probably the first sub-story you'll do.), Akiyama falls in with a group of people you'd find in any zombie flick, like the geek, the desperate businessman, the horny couple, the pious woman and a prankster dressed as a zombie and you have to save them in the order of prankster, couple, pious. Along the way, many zombie victim tropes are lampshaded. In the end, the geek steals the businessman's money and heads off, only to [[KarmicDeath slip on a banana peel, mess up his leg, and fall victim to the zombies]].
* CoolOldGuy: Detective Makoto Date, who even fights alongside Kazuma at times and is pretty reasonable to him in the first game.
** It's not just him, Kawara doubles it for being a CowboyCop and there's Hanaya/Kage who "plays fair," Sotaro Komaki, Fuma/Kazama, [[spoiler: his cop brother-turned-CIA Agent Jouji]] and finally Nakahara that [[spoiler:wrestled with a ''bull'']].
* CounterAttack: Kazuma can learn several from Sotaro Komaki in the games. The easy to pull-off Knock Back, the strong Tiger Drop, and the stunning Komaki Parry.
* CowardlyBoss: Koji Shindo from the second game
** Also from the second game, Sengoku. He doesn't even fight, he has his pet tigers take on Kazuma.
** The third Game has [[spoiler:Hamazaki]] who lets Lau and his henchman fight his own war. [[TheUnfought You don't even fight him!]]
** [[spoiler: Munakata]] in the forth game. While Kiryu, Akiyama, and Saejima have one-on-one boss fights with their enemies, Tanimura has to deal with [[spoiler: half a dozen elite police forces while Munakata runs around and shoots him with his pistol.]]
* CurbStompBattle: You might as well not even bother trying to fight the Dragon of Dojima if you're a nameless thug, because you *will* be sent to the infirmary... if you're lucky.
** Sotaro Komaki [[ThatOneBoss WILL]] do this to you unless you abuse cheap moves.
* DatingSim: Every game has had an optional series of [[SideQuest side quests]] where Kazuma could visit the local hostess clubs and woo a collection of lovely ladies for HundredPercentCompletion and some neat bonuses which includes [[ExperiencePoints XP]], sometimes very valuable items, and photo portraits of the women.
** In the second game, Kazuma can also optionally help out the hapless employees of a host club getting screwed over by their boss... by signing on as the newest employee and working to become the Number One Host as a gambit to root out the boss from hiding.
** In the western release of the third game, the whole "hostess club" aspect was cut, which just allowed Kazuma to simply take the girls out for a couple dates, then reap the benefits (no relationship values, expensive hostessing minigame, multiple choice dialogue, etc).
** The hostess clubs return in full in the western release of the fourth game (at least for Akiyama, Tanimura, and Kazuma).
** In Dead Souls, wooing a lady allows you to use her as an escort into the Quarantine Zone. One of the DLCs allows you to change their outfits as well as what gun they use.
* DefeatMeansFriendship: This is pretty much how Kazuma snaps Daigo Dojima out of his hedonistic spree and gets him focused on taking charge of the Tojo Clan. Also applies to Rikiya, Saejima and Majima (although he genuinely enjoys fighting Kazzy).
* DesperationAttack: Normally the Hunt and Kill Heat Action (performed on a prone opponent) is either a head stomp or a kick to the gut. If you use it while Kazuma's health is low enough for the meter to blink red however, instead Kazuma straddles the opponent and starts punching away, at which point you can [[ActionCommand keep spamming the Square Button]] ForMassiveDamage.
* DevelopingDoomedCharacters: One of the most criticized aspects of the third game is that the beginning (and one point in the middle) is spent taking care of the Sunsine Orphanage's children and their minimal problems, as opposed to the dealings and conflicts of the Japanese mafia, which is the main hook of the series.
* DisproportionateRetribution: Shimano in a [[YouHaveFailedMe you failed me]] moment cuts the fingers of his underling for losing to Kazuma and getting shot by Shinji in the first game. but again this is a Yakuza game so no surprise here.
--> '''Shimano:''' Let me see your hand for just a second..
** [[JustifiedTrope Actually]], this is a common punishment among [[RealLife Yakuza]], and is as symbolic as the physical punishment is painful.Cutting off one's fingers decreases one's ability to grip a sword effectively, making him more dependent on the group.
** [[spoiler: The entire plot of Dead Souls is this in a nutshell. Kiryu and Goda aren't too pleased.]]
* DisappearedDad: Hanaya/Kage to Takashi. [[spoiler:And Kawara to Kaoru in the second game.]]
* {{DLC}}:
** Appears on all main PS3 games. In the USA, the DLC is free! (Well, save for Yakuza 3.) Dead Souls even offer up rare items that can't be obtained until MUCH later!
* TheDragon: This was in fact Kazuma's title and position (The Dragon of Dojima) before circumstances sent him to prison in the first game.
* DrunkenMaster: It's a very bad idea to pick a fight with Kazuma. It's an even WORSE idea to pick a fight with Kazuma ''when he's drunk'': while drunk, his Heat meter recharges faster, and he even has some special(not to mention BONE SHATTERING) moves that he can only do while drunk. You will probably spend lots of yen just getting him hammered or buying alcohol to go to always make sure you have a little extra oomph.
** Which is ironic since the game makes confrontations with {{Mooks}} more likely when Kazuma's buzzed.
* DualWielding: Hayashi from the second game.
** And one of the available styles in ''Kenzan!'', a no-brainer considering that Kiryu is [[spoiler:also MiyamotoMusashi]].
** Lau Ka Long in the first game also takes up a pair of swords after receiving a good amount of physical damage.
** Prisoner #1356 carries a pair of forks this way.
** Kamiyama, the weapons master, actually wields Kali sticks during the arena matches. And he's fairly tough!
* DubNameChange: Shintarou Kazama becomes Shintarou Fuma for the US release. [[spoiler: Ditto for his younger brother in the third game.]] Also, Nishikiyama was shortened to Nishiki.
** In addition, Hanaya was called Kage, although the second game referred to this specific DubNameChange by adding the title "Florist." ''Hanaya'' is literally the Japanese word for "florist".
** Interestingly, the Western release of the fourth game averts this trope and refers to almost everyone by their Japanese names (the only exception is Kage, who is referred to as "Florist" in the subtitles).
* DudeWheresMyRespect: Played straight and subverted. Only once in a blue moon does Kazuma's insane reputation prevent a fight or frighten an enemy. Despite being one of the most dangerous alive, nearly every goon and boss in Japan is still gunning for him in spite or because of his reputation.
** And this is played with in the second game. [[spoiler:In a sidequest, Kazuma finds out that a couple of clowns have been shaking down goods and services from people by masquerading as him and his late buddy [[DeadPersonImpersonation Shinji Tanaka]]. Rarely in video game history has there been such an instance of [=NPCs=] [[HoistByHisOwnPetard invoking]] a CurbstompBattle on [[TooDumbToLive themselves.]]]]
** Played with in ''3'': part of the beginning tutorial is a gang of mooks working for the ''Fuma'' Clan, Kazuma's original outfit. Like all other mooks, they pick a fight with Kazuma just for shits and giggles. After beating them within an inch of their life, their boss shows up and chastises them for not bowing to the Tojo Clan's Fourth Chairman. The mooks are [[MassOhCrap HORRIFIED.]]
** Pretty well averted in 4 and Dead Souls, whose multi-character gameplay (with Kiryu being the last character) allows him to be presented as more of a larger-than-life character from the perspectives of other characters. Additionally, many of his random encounters in 4 are people attacking him knowing that if they should take down the Dragon of Dojima, their own reputations will skyrocket. Still SuicidalOverconfidence, but it's SuicidalOverconfidence out of ''respect''.
* DulcineaEffect: Men are falling over themselves to protect Lily in 4, though everyone does have their own reasons. Doesn't change the fact that only one of the main characters has known her for more than a week.
* EvenEvilHasStandards: [[spoiler:At the end of Chapter 12 in the second game, Kazuma chases Sengoku up the Golden Palace past an army of {{Samurai}}-clad {{Mooks}}- and even a pair of tigers- to his office after he kidnapped Haruka as a ploy to lure Kazuma into an ambush. Sengoku is quite surprised to see Ryuji Goda waiting there for them all with a [[KatanasAreJustBetter katana]] over his shoulder. After commiserating with Kazuma's plight, Goda responds to Sengoku's mouthing off by cutting a deep gash in his chest. At that point, Ryuji makes it clear abducting Haruka was in poor taste. That might have been it if Sengoku actually had common sense and kept quiet. Instead, he [[TooDumbToLive spits out]] that Ryuji only got far because of his [[{{Nepotism}} father]]. Ryuji [[YouWouldntLikeMeWhenImAngry had enough of Sengoku at that point]], stabbing him with the katana and pushing him to the balcony before kicking him off the top of the Golden Palace. He then lets Kazuma leave with Haruka, but makes it clear that there would be a huge brawl between the Omi and the Tojo in one day.]]
* EvilCounterpart: Ryuji Goda from the second game.
** From the first game, Akira Nishiki, who basically cracked under the pressure over the years and molded himself into a cold version of what Kazuma would have become (a head of a family of the Tojo) if he hadn't been in prison.
** And the third game has [[spoiler: Yoshitaka Mine, who grew up as an orphan like Kazuma, but without the support of friends like he had, grew up lonely and with a very twisted mentality]].
* EvilFeelsGood: The zombification process in Dead Souls explicitly feels very pleasant, due to the over production of endorphin hormones.
* {{Expy}}: The boss of the Purple Killers in the fourth game is SelfDemonstrating/TheJoker. This is apparent even before you meet him, being described as a guy in a purple suit with an insane smirk. [[spoiler: Then you find out he's killer in clown makeup with mannerisms very similar to Heath Ledger's Joker and... yeah.]]
* ExtremityExtremist: Akiyama and Tanimura in the fourth game are both mild examples. Tanimura's attack on a downed attack is even a crouching punch as opposed to a stomp like everyone else. Their basic combos play it straight, but as they learn new abilities their HEAT actions (and more advenced combos) they branch out considerably.
* EyepatchOfPower: Goro Majima, who pretty much fights [[{{Badass}} Kazuma]] in every game thus far at an even footing.
* FinishingMove: Starting from the second game, knocking down an opponent's health sufficiently in a BossBattle will open up a window of opportunity where you can quickly charge Kazuma's HEAT Meter with rapid button mashes (if it's not filled all ready) to execute a special and often [[ForMassiveDamage devastating]] HEAT Action that will usually drop the unfortunate recepient in one hit.
* {{Flashback}}: The games (Save for Dead Souls) after the first allow someone who never played the past installments to find out the storyline in segments at the opening cemetery scene and using the Reminisce option.
** A small example in ''Dead Souls'': the end credits are a slide show from previous ''Yakuza'' games (save for the one PSP release in Japan), which include cameos from characters in those games (Akira in ''1'', Saejima and Tanimura in ''4''.) (Note: the part where flashbacks to ''Kenzan!'' [[NoExportForYou may not make sense to non-Japanese gamers.]])
* ForMassiveDamage: Kazuma dishes these out on a fairly regular basis, often requiring ActionCommands to properly brutalize an opponent with either a weapon in hand or using the scenery itself.
* ForgottenFallenFriend: [[spoiler: Shinji Tanaka from the first game and especially Rikiya from the third game. Despite both being TheLancer, neither of them get a mention in the following game, outside of the Reminisce menu.]]
* FriendToAllChildren: Nothing brings out Kazuma's good side like kids, especially his kids from the orphanage and his adopted niece Haruka. Subsequently, nothing brings out Kazuma's [[UnstoppableRage BAD side]] [[PapaWolf like someone hurting a kid]]. [[CurbStompBattle The most savage and satisfying beatings Kazuma's rained on someone]] are those in retaliation for abusing a kid.
* FrothyMugsOfWater: Ukyo Tatsuya of the Kurohyou series cannot drink booze with hostesses since he is below drinking age of 18/19 (in the sequel). The hostess clubs offers non alcoholic alternatives for him and his hostess though from premium cola to fresh fruit juice and in the sequel, virgin cocktails.
* GameWithinAGame: The Club Sega branches will always have a UFO Catcher skill crane and even playable video game machines. These can serve as part of a SideQuest.
** Yakuza 5 will even have a VirtuaFighter 2 machine!
* GameplayAndStorySegregation: Only in cutscenes does Kazuma suffer an actual injury that would cripple him.
* GatlingGood: Ryuji Goda in ''Of The End/Dead Souls'' sports a cybernetic ArmCannon from the [[VideoGame/FinalFantasyVII Barrett Wallace]] Collection.
* GoryDiscretionShot: In the third game, [[spoiler: the severed head (or body part) of Tsuyoshi Kanda]] is never seen on camera when [[spoiler:Mine]] brings it to Kazuma and company.
* GoOutWithASmile: [[spoiler: Ryuji Goda in a surprisingly heartwarming scene.]]
* GratuitousEnglish: Since the games have used the Japanese voices since Yakuza 2, [[spoiler: Andre Richardson]] in 3's the only major character who speaks in English.
* GunsAkimbo: Several regular bosses, most notably Arase and super boss hitman Amon Jou in classic John Woo style. Which makes it all the more badass when they are beaten to death by fists and feet (if the player chooses).
** This is Shun Akiyama's default weapon configuration in ''Of The End/Dead Souls''. After you wooed a hotess, you can have them wield double pistols.
** Averted in Amon Jou's case in ''Kenzan!'', as he uses a sword there.
* HollywoodHealing: Most main characters, and even mooks to an extent, regularly survive beatings that would kill most men ten times over. It's especially obvious when you use a triple katana slice or pistol on a lowly purse snatcher... and they live.
** Even moreso in ''Kenzan!'', where the sword combos can be ''way'' longer...
* HeroicBloodshed: ''Ryu ga Gotoku'' has a lot in common with Heroic Bloodshed movies in terms of thematic elements.
* HeroicSacrifice: So many. There's an instance of TakingTheBullet pretty much once per game.
* HeyItsThatVoice
** For the English version of the first game:
*** As was stated earlier, Majima is [[MarkHamill The Joker]] and Nishiki is [[{{Smallville}} Lex Luthor]].
*** Yumi is [[Series/BuffyTheVampireSlayer Faith]] and [[{{Dollhouse}} Echo]].
*** Shimano is [[ReservoirDogs Vic Vega]] and [[KillBill Budd]].
*** Reina is [[{{Psych}} Abigail Lytar]].
*** Sera is [[Series/{{Lost}} Charles Widmore]].
*** Hanaya/Kage is [[Series/TheATeam that crazy foo Murdock]].
*** Haruka is [[TenchiMuyo Ryo-Ohki]] and [[TheAdventuresOfJimmyNeutron Jimmy Neutron]].
*** Date is {{Goofy}} and [[HarveyBirdmanAttorneyAtLaw Secret Squirrel]].
*** Kazama/Fuma is [[ThePowerpuffGirls Mojo Jojo]].
*** [[spoiler:Jingu is [[NoMoreHeroes Travis Touchdown]] and [[StarWarsCloneWars Cham Syndulla]].]]
** For the Japanese cast:
*** [[TakayaKuroda Kazuma]] is [[{{Transformers}} Starscream]] and [[WarriorsOrochi Hanzo Hattori.]]
*** [[RieKugimiya Haruka]] is [[{{Persona 4}} Rise Kujikawa]], [[Manga/FullmetalAlchemist Alphonse Elric]] and [[ShakuganNoShana Shana.]]
*** [[KoichiYamadera Akiyama]] is [[Anime/CowboyBebop Spike Spiegel]] and DonaldDuck.
*** [[RikiyaKoyama Saejima]] is [[VideoGame/MarvelVsCapcom3 Frank West]] and {{Wolverine}}.
*** [[KazuyaNakai Hasabe]] is [[SamuraiChamploo Mugen]], [[SengokuBasara Masamune Date]], and [[Manga/OnePiece Roronoa Zoro]].
*** [[AkioOhtsuka The Minister of Defense]] is [[Franchise/MetalGear Solid Snake.]]
*** [[AyaHirano Hana]] is LightNovel/HaruhiSuzumiya and [[LuckyStar Konata.]]
* HiddenDepths: While Kazuma's fists bring justice to man, his voice will shake your soul.
* HideYourChildren: Averted in the third game, not only with the Sunshine Orphanage kids, but other kids as well can be seen walking around Downtown Ryukubu.
* HonorBeforeReason: SO MUCH.
* IKnowMaddenKombat: In the second game, Kazuma can gain improved Strong Attacks and later improved Heat Actions with the baseball bat, golf club and bowling ball by playing enough times at the batting cage, driving range and bowling alley respectively then completing the related SideQuest for each location. By the next game, by refighting bosses, he can 'learn' new techniques, such as using knuckles.
* IdiotBall: Let's just say that protagonists' IQs drop considerably whenever a gun comes into play.
* ImpaledPalm: An uncommon HEAT action in Yakuza 3 and 4 when Kazuma is holding a knife near a wall is to throw the mook at the wall, then stabs his hand against the wall.
* IrrelevantSidequest: Just about the most irrelevant in the gaming industry. It's half the fun.
* KingpinInHisGym: in the third game Mine appears kickboxing with a sandbag in a cutscene because the game wants you to know that he's no pushover. [[spoiler: Which you end up learning by yourself since he is the FinalBoss]].
* KnifeNut: Goro Majima. Tamashiro licks his knife in his introduction sequence, but he does better with knuckles.
* KungFoley: Kazuma's stronger punches- particularly with one of his CounterAttack moves or when he uses the DesperationAttack- have a deep bass echo to convey just how brutally powerful they are.
* TheLancer: Shinji Tanaka in the first game, Daigo Dojima in the second, Rikiya Shimabukuro in the third.
* LaserGuidedKarma: Kazuma helping out the fun-loving crazy old lady in the second game will not only give him the obligatory SideQuest [[ExperiencePoints XP]], it'll also give him access to some useful combat skills. [[spoiler:Which becomes self-explanatory when it's revealed that the fun-loving crazy old lady is in fact [[RetiredBadAss Lau Ka Long's former martial arts instructor]].]]
* LimitBreak: The Heat moves.
* LoanShark: Shun Akiyama from Yakuza 4 operates as one. Subverted in that he loans out money with no interest or collateral, as long that the recipient [[SecretTestOfCharacter passes one of his tests]]. Many of his random encounters are actual loan sharks who want Akiyama to stop, since he's encroaching on their territory.
* LostInTranslation: Majima is quite fond of calling our hero "''Kiyru-chan''", or "''Kazuma-chan''" in the American dub. In Japan, the only time that a man would ever call another man by the effeminate suffix ''-chan'' is 1.) they are close family or childhood friends, or 2.) as a diminutive insult. The original Japanese games make "''Kiyru-chan''" sound affectionate (even more so when you consider Kiryu addresses Majima as "Onii-san", or 'big brother'); the American dub of the first game makes "''Kazuma-chan''" sound more diminutive.
** The english subtitles starting from the second game has Majima calling Kazuma "Kazzy" which not only is a more approximate term of endearment but also might reference MarkHamill having voiced Majima in the U.S. release of the first game.
* LoveInterest: Yumi Sawamura in the first one, Kaoru Sayama in the second.
* AMacGuffinFullOfMoney: The 10 Billion Yen that goes missing from the Tojo Clan in the first game. By extension Haruka (or more specifically, her locket), as people quickly realize she's the key to the missing money.
* ManBehindTheMan: Pretty much at least one per game. [[UpToEleven Some games go trigger-happy with his trope. Literally.]]
* ManlyTears: Kazuma actually sheds these when [[spoiler:Rikiya]] dies. You know from this moment on that someone is [[RoaringRampageOfRevenge GOING TO FUCKING DIE.]]
* MoodWhiplash: Between the serious HeroicBloodshed main stories, utterly insane IrrelevantSidequests, and ComicallySerious protagonist, this is a huge part of the appeal of the series. The contrast between how serious the games' storyline is and how STUPID the sidequests can be is mindblowing. It's hard to believe Kazuma can be fighting for his life against the most bloodthirsty gangsters in the world in one mission, and then running from a lovesick transvestite in another.
* {{Mooks}}: An endless horde of thugs, gangbangers and Yakuza endlessly harass Kazuma with their tough talk and cruel actions. He is not impressed.
* MuggingTheMonster: The thugs constantly trying to beat up/extort the main characters as they walk down the street have no idea what they're getting into. In Tanimura or Akiyama's case, that's somewhat forgivable as neither of them look anywhere near as strong as they are. Well-built, clearly-a-Yakuza Kazuma and built-like-a-brick-shithouse-on-steroids Saejima, on the other hand....
* MundaneMadeAwesome: Revelations.
** In the third and fourth games, Kazuma and Akiyama have mad blogging skillz.
** And in the fourth, Saejima's epic woodcarving.
* MysteriousInformant: Kage the Florist, although he's not really all that mysterious. Just well-connected.
* NeverBringAKnifeToAFistFight: Because first, it won't do any good. And second, Kazuma will then use it on your friends.
** Guns won't be any better either, especially once Kazuma has mastered the Komaki Shot Stopper. He'll deflect your aim off, then proceed to beat the shit out of you.
*** On the other hand, if its Kazuma bringing the weaponry, massive damage ensues. Crude Pistols will one-shot weaker enemies and the shotgun one hit kills all but the end game mooks. Not to mention the brutal attacks he can pull off with melee weaponry....
** Averted in Dead Souls, it's [[PaperFanOfDoom (usually)]] impossible to kill a zombie with melee attacks, and Kiryu has a rough time when he [[spoiler: goes into the quarantine zone without any weapons.]]
* NiceGuy: Kazuma missed his calling in life as the Patron Saint of Niceness. He helps any innocent bystander no matter how big or small the problem, rescues young girls, pets, old women crossing the street, and forgives men who try to kill him on several occasions at the slightest hint of their redemption. This makes his status as the entire underworld's ButtMonkey so far as picking fights go all the more hilarious. In 3, he goes so far as to track down the most dangerous hitmen in Japan... JUST to beat the crap out of them and drag them to a reform center so they can get out of the criminal life.
* NoExportForYou: The four main games have all seen Western releases. The same cannot be said about ''Kenzan!'' and ''Black Panther'', two spin-off titles. However, ZombieApocalypse spin-off ''Of The End'' has been confirmed for a Western release at least. It's coming over as ''Yakuza: Dead Souls'', averting this trope.
* NobleDemon: Ryuji Goda. See EvenEvilHasStandards above.
* OhCrap: If you pull out a weapon in the middle of a heated random encounter battle or finish off the penultimate enemy, your enemie(s) may suddenly panic and start to back off. Kiryu even has a HEAT action against scared enemies holding weapons.
* OldMaster: Sotaro Komaki. And when you can actually fight him in a tournament, [[ThatOneBoss he will show you just why he is the Old Master.]]
* OldSaveBonus: Starting a file for the second game in a card with the files from the first nets Kazuma a bonanza of items, most of which Haruka gave to him in the first game to indicate his KarmaMeter progression and comprise of one-shot healing items and accessories that affect his stats.
** In ''Yakuza 3'' (may be JP version only), having a ''Kenzan!'' save file will net you Ukiyo's Bell, an exclusive protective item.
** 4 and Dead Souls offer up items if you played the last game. 3 gives you a armor and a accessory that restores HP over time and 4 nets you a item that offers high defense and charm.
* OneHitPointWonder: The Artful Dodger. After all, all you got to do is to hit him just once.
* OneManArmy: Kazuma. In the course of three games he was able to fight alone against almost everything, from entire yakuza families to triads to trained military personnel and even rogue CIA agents.
* TheOnlyOneAllowedToDefeatYou: [[spoiler:Goro Majima pretty much gives the as the reason why he took a knife meant for Kazuma in the gut... right after coldcocking the underling who used the aformentioned knife. ]]
* PapaWolf: Do not mess with little Haruka, Kazuma's adoptive daughter, if you value your life.
** And in ''3'', don't mess with ANY of Kazuma's kids. It counts against your life expectancy.
* PaperFanOfDoom: Ryuji gets to use this ''of all things'' to fend off various mutated zombies in ''Of The End/Dead Souls'', when trapped in a gas leak. Literally played straight, as it only takes ''a few hits'' to kill what could've taken lots of bullets, and has infinite durability
* PlayingAgainstType: In the English version of the first game, Bill Farmer- best known as the voice of Goofy- gives a rather remarkable and down-to-earth serious performance as Detective Makoto Date.
* PreAssKickingOneLiner: Near the end of the first game, Kazuma and Haruka are about to head for the Millennium Tower to locate her mother and the missing Tojo money. Suddenly pedestrians clear the street and they're surrounded by an armed mob. Kazuma reassures Haruka that he'll get her to her mother, then turns around to stare down the mob and let them know what's coming:
-->'''Kazuma''': [[SuicidalOverconfidence So you're ready for me?]] [[BringIt Then step the fuck up]], it's time to ''[[TranquilFury die]]''.
* PressXToNotDie: [[spoiler: You have to press a button on your last attack against the final boss of Ryu ga Gotoku 2. If you don't, well...]]
* ProductPlacement: A surprising amount and remarkably they tend to avert EnforcedPlug for the most part, making contextual sense where they do appear.
** The Don Quijote discount stores than can be visited are based on an [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Don_Quijote_(store) actual chain in Japan]], as well as in Hawaii.
** The Suntory group also has prominent placement, ranging from soft drinks like Boss iced coffee all the way to premium brand-name liquor that they have distribution rights to in Japan, including Jack Daniels Tennessee whiskey.
** The [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ryu_Ga_Gotoku#Tie-in_and_product_placement Other Wiki]] has more specific details on the Product Placements.
* PsychoForHire: Goro Majima. [[spoiler:To the point where you hire him in the second game, and it's real nice to have him on your side this time.]]
* RangedEmergencyWeapon: In Dead Souls, Pistol ammo is infinite, making a Pistol a RangedEmergencyWeapon for most characters (except for Akiyama, whose primary weapon is a pistol). But as the first character in the game this works to soften the learning curve by making ammo not much of an issue until later).
* RatedMForManly: The Series itself, being that nearly anyone is capable of pulling off [=CMOAs=] at the drop of a hat.
* RedemptionEqualsDeath: While not wholly repentant, [[spoiler:Nishiki]] died avenging someone he cared about. Ditto [[spoiler: Mine in the third game]]. Also [[spoiler: Hamazaki]] in Yakuza 4.
* ReformedCriminal: Possibly a few examples in the games, but in particular Hanaya/Kage. In the first game he had been a former police intelligence officer who was busted by Date for selling some of the information he gathered and ended up becoming the de facto ruler of Purgatory while continuing to sell information. In the second game, it turns out that the police contracted him for his abilities and he left Purgatory in the charge of CrazyAwesome Goro Majima to move his base of operations to the Millennium Tower.
* RivalTurnedEvil: Akira Nishiki, childhood friend of Kazuma who, after a series of tragic events, really changed during the years Kazuma was in jail for [[spoiler: a murder that Nishiki himself committed - granted, he had a good reason.]]
* RoaringRampageOfRevenge: Played most straight in ''Dead Souls,'' when Kazuma enters the quarantine zone to confront those that kidnapped Haruka... and proceeds to fight zombies. Unarmed.
* RuthlessForeignGangsters: Kiryu has to fight Korean gangsters/terrorists in the second game as well as the other yakuza.
** And in the first game, Kazuma also has to rescue Haruka from Lau Ka Long's [[TheTriadsAndTheTongs Snake Flower Triad]].
** The third one has [[spoiler:Black Monday, a weapons dealing syndicate headed by corrupt CIA operatives.]]
* ScaryBlackMan: Gary "Buster" Holmes, although only in the ring. Outside of it he's a rather amicable GentleGiant.
** [[spoiler:And in ''Of the End/Dead Souls'', Gary is your personal Drill Instructor for Zombie Killer Boot Camp.]]
* ScrewTheMoneyIHaveRules: Pretty common, with Daigo refusing a land deal in 3 because it would inconvenience Kiryu, and the entire main cast (especially Akiyama) [[spoiler: throwing away 100 billion yen to figure out who was pulling the strings and bring them to justice.]]
* SequenceBreaking: In ''Dead Souls'', you can download a free DLC that allows you to pick up rare crafting materials as soon as you leave the quarantine zone. With this, you can make/upgrade weapons/armor a lot sooner than normally.
* SerialEscalation: [[spoiler: Tiger punching.]]
** For a game that repeatedly escalates, the zombie apocalypse in ''Of The End'' shatters every known perception of possibility.
* SignatureSoundEffect: The loud echoing crack that rings each time Kazuma delivers a finishing blow to the last opponent in a combat round... even if it's just a simple straight punch to a [[SuicidalOverconfidence suicidally overconfident]] and [[OneHitPointWonder fragile]] twerp.
* ShoutOut: Ryu ga Gotoku 2 contained references to the previous game, AshitaNoJoe, SEGA, the PS3 cat and even Film/TheMatrix (the "Man in black").
** [[spoiler: It could be argued that the MindScrew ManBehindTheMan reveal towards the end is a veiled reference to VideoGame/MetalGearSolid.]]
** Also, Kazuma can learn various techniques after helping out and sparring with wrestler "Cyclops" Oba, who is likely a reference to Japanese wrestling legend "Giant" Baba.
** Snake Flower Triad leader Lau Ka Long is patterned after [[VirtuaFighter Lau Chan]], with a few shades of [[{{Shenmue}} Lan Di]].
*** In the same vein, the fourth installment introduces Daisaku Minami, a drunken boxer who has a few moves directly lifted from [[VirtuaFighter Shun Di]] complete with appropriate sound effect.
** ''Of the End/Dead Souls'' has a couple of nods to the live action movie: Majima's firearm of choice is a shotgun, and one of the Team Heat Actions has him hitting a target with a line drive... except in ''Of the End/Dead Souls'' he uses his SPAS-12 as a baseball bat and the "ball" happens to be a grenade that a Super Zombie [[Franchise/ResidentEvil B.O.W.]] swallows to predictable result.
** In this trailer[[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QzE-Usa5kkc]] and footage[[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MewAJegsPOE]] has quite a few to other survivor horrors and combat ops; if you look among which a couple [[Left4Dead of hunters and a tank]], [[SilentHill flashlight segments and the changes to the Kamurocho district]], [[MetalSlug available attack vehicles to use]],[[spoiler:a room with [[Franchise/ResidentEvil Lickers]], a [[HouseOfTheDead team up in a room with the chapter's]] [[LoadBearingBoss behemoth zombie]] ]], just from what is shown.
** If one manages to look closely, Andre Richardson ([[spoiler:Black Monday's leader, a crooked CIA agent and one of the [[BigBad Big Bads]] of ''3'']]) looks suprisingly similar to [[Franchise/ResidentEvil Albert Wesker]]. Many a fan have indulged in calling him "[[FanNickname Wesker Jr.]]"
* ShownTheirWork: According to actual Yakuza who played it, it's not wildly off the mark, and most of the inaccuracies fall under AcceptableBreaksFromReality.
* SimulationGame: The second game plays with this a bit, as an optional sidequest where saving the owner of the hostess club Marietta from {{Mook}} harassment opens up the opportunity to run the place with the aim of trying to make it profitable while the owner attends to family illness.
* SinisterSurveillance: Inverted. Kamurocho has a ''very'' extensive surveillance network installed, that seems to be able to note every square inch of the city inside buildings well as out and includes the ability to zoom in and presumably enhance images. Hanaya/Kage uses it as his primary tool to gather information for clients and to help out Kazuma at certain instances.
* SniperRifle: As of ''Dead Souls/Of The End'' Kazuma is carrying an '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Barrett_M82 M-107]]''' which also counts as a {{BFG}}.
* SociopathicHero: Goro Majima. Although an antagonist in the first game, it was actually because of circumstances and [[TheOnlyOneAllowedToDefeatYou his rivalry with Kazuma for the title of the underworld's biggest badass.]] He is actually MAD loyal to Kazuma, and very protective of the men under him... as long as they don't piss him off, in which case he'll break their face badly. In every game from the second one on, he's been an ally of Kazuma's.
** Theories abound that there's also a... [[HoYay certain context]] to Majima's loyalty to Kazuma.
** More like Kazuma is the only person [[TheDeterminator durable]] enough to stand up to his psychotic rage.
* SpoilerOpening: In Yakuza 3, [[spoiler: Mine is shown to be NotSoStoic in the opening video, which would be a surprise considering his seemingly low-importance for most of the game.]]
* SuicidalOverconfidence: "[[MuggingTheMonster Hey, we're having a pretty bad day, so we need to take out our aggression on you.]] [[GenreBlind Huh? Why you looking at us funny?]] [[HilarityEnsues You wanna die, old man?!]]"
* StatusQuoIsGod: A small example: Akiyama's overweight secretary Hana becomes a [[BeautifulAllAlong gorgeous bombshell through dieting]] by the events of ''4's'' end. She ends up returning to her old body type by ''Dead Souls.'' She's actually back to her old body type by the non-canon [[NewGamePlus Premium Adventure Mode]], but when/if that actually takes place isn't clear.
* TakingTheBullet: Pretty much at least [[OncePerEpisode once per game.]]
* TattooedCrook: Given that the game series deals heavily with the subject of Yakuza this is ''de rigeur''. The tattoos on the main characters (Kazuma- Blue Dragon, Nishiki- Carp, Majima- Oni, Goda- Gold Dragon, Mine- Kirin, Rikiya- Viper, Daigo- Fudo Miyou, Saejima- Tiger) turn out to be very symbolic in the games and are often reflective of their personalities and traits.
* ThouShaltNotKill: Beating the crap out of dozens of people? Forgivable. One lowly punk getting shot/stabbed to death? SeriousBusiness. Like, clan-war serious. This may come off as ValuesDissonance for people used to western crime dramas, but remember that guns (and thus, gun violence) are a lot rarer in Japan, plus yakuza are ''really'' political.
** Unless they're [[WhatMeasureIsAMook foreigners]] in which case you can gun them down without remorse. Ditto zombies.
* TinyHeadedBehemoth: The Meat Head enemy ''Yakuza: Dead Souls'' has a ridiculously buff, armored upper body, with his only weakness being his normal-sized head and the surrounding tissue.
* TrueCompanions: By the endgame of ''4'', Kazuma has formed a companionship with Shun Akiyama, Taiga Saejima and Masayoshi Tanimura. A more impressive collection of bonafide badasses will be hard to find.
* TurnCoat: So far, apart from [[TheLancer Shinji Tanaka]], significant individuals in the Nishiki Family are doomed to this role.
* TwoGuysAndAGirl: Kazuma, Nishiki, and Yumi in the first game pretty much fits this trope, especially as the story went by.
* VideoGameCrueltyPotential: Of the Enemies only type. Sure, the various mooks and bosses Kazuma meet are either punks or scum but did they really need to suffer that badly by various brutal heat actions? Of course, it is kind of their fault for provoking him in the first place.
* TheUnfought: [[spoiler:Hamazaki]] in the third game.
** Unless you download a certain DLC.
* WalkingArmory: Taiga Saejima made his debut by using more guns than anyone else in the entire series: six at once! Two in either hand, two in his pockets, one in his belt, and one in his teeth. 36 bullets to wipe out an entire branch of an enemy clan. In Japan, where guns are rare to begin with, this is ''ludicrous.''
* WeaponOfChoice: In ''Dead Souls/Of The End'', each of the four playable characters have one primary firearm that they use as their default weapon.
** Kazuma, as stated above, has an anti-armor [[ColdSniper sniper rifle]].
** Akiyama brandishes [[GunsAkimbo two pistols]].
** Majima has a [[ShotgunsAreJustBetter pump-action shotgun.]]
** Ryuji's main firearm is actually one of his arms, [[GatlingGood which transforms into a gatling gun.]]
* WhamEpisode: Chapter 11 of the third game. [[spoiler: Sunshine Orphanage is bulldozed by Mine and the Tamashiro family, Mikio is almost killed via a sledgehammer to the skull, Nakahara is captured and thrown into a bullring, Saki finds her voice at last, [[CrowningMomentOfAwesome the Tamashiro family and it's bulls get a collective ass-whooping]], and Rikiya [[HeroicSacrifice heroically takes a bullet]] meant for Kazuma and dies.]] The last one is particuarly shocking, as [[spoiler: Rikiya]] is the only ally in the entire game [[spoiler: who dies]].
* WhatHappenedToTheMouse: Averted with [[spoiler: Hamazaki]] in the third game.
** Yet played straight in the same game with [[spoiler:Rikiya's childhood's friend]]. The side mission where he finds her working in a pole dancing club is treated like a main mission, with cutscene and all. [[spoiler:Rikiya promises to take her out of this life style for good]], but he ends up [[spoiler:dead in the end]], but the [[spoiler:girl]] is never brought up in the main storyline, and how [[spoiler:she feels about her White Knight being dead]] is left unknown.
* WideOpenSandbox: Kamurocho in general, and other locations as the series goes on.
* WouldntHitAGirl: Imposed by the games on the player; Kazuma will never find himself in a situation where he must (or can) strike a woman. On the rare occassions where he is tracking or is attacked by a woman, it will always turn out to be a [[GenderBender guy in drag]].
** [[spoiler:Which is hilariously subverted in a SideQuest in the first game. Refusing to go into a Hotel for some "fun" with a woman results in her calling her thug brother in an attempt to pummel Kazuma. After the obligatory trashing ensues, it's then revealed that the siblings are [[GenderBender Gender Benders]], with the "woman" being [[DudeLooksLikeALady male]] and the thug "brother" being the actual female.]]
** [[spoiler: The end result of the Michiru substory in 3 reveals that the 'guy' you originally rescued 'her' from? That was a post-op man.]]
** The lack of female opponents is somewhat averted in 4. While helping her out with her investigation, Tanimura takes up a female Korean cop named Nair who's in Japan chasing a Korean criminal as a sparring partner. She's the only female opponent in the game, though, and neither one of them have any intention on holding back on each other.
** Finally averted in Dead Souls, which has female zombies, including special mutants that are exclusively female.
* WrestlerInAllOfUs: Pretty much everyone in all the games, actually, but special mention goes to Saejima and [[spoiler: Yoshitaka Mine in the third game, who gives the BigBad a Dragon Suplex ''off a thirty story building''.]]
** Kiryu has a wrestler handle: Dragon Mask.
* XMeetsY: ''Of The End/Dead Souls'' is basically Left4Dead meets VideoGame/RyuGaGotoku with a bit of Franchise/ResidentEvil.
* ZombieApocalypse: ''Of The End/Dead Souls''. Yes, a Yakuza game [[OutOfGenreExperience features zombies]]. Somewhat subverted in that the outbreak is contained to Kamurocho and is thus not a truly global ZombieApocalypse.
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[[redirect:VideoGame/RyuGaGotoku]]
30th May '13 9:15:03 PM kawaiineko333
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* GratuitousEnglish: Since the games have used the Japanese voices since Yakuza 2, [[spoiler: Andre Richardson]] in 3's the only major character who speaks in English.
22nd May '13 10:15:37 AM Larkmarn
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[[caption-width-right:300:Kazuma Kiryu apparently finds the description fascinating]]
21st May '13 7:06:25 PM Willbyr
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[[quoteright:216:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/Ryu_Ga_Gotoku_02929_5884.jpg]]

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[[quoteright:216:http://static.%% Image selected per Image Pickin' thread: http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/posts.php?discussion=1368473856076830700
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tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/Ryu_Ga_Gotoku_02929_5884.org/pmwiki/pub/images/yakuza-sega_2806.jpg]]
20th May '13 1:47:27 AM morenohijazo
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* TinyHeadedBehemoth: The Meat Head enemy ''Yakuza: Dead Souls'' has a ridiculously buff, armored upper body, with his only weakness being his normal-sized head and the surrounding tissue.
20th May '13 1:01:23 AM Kytseo
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** [[spoiler: The third game. While Kiryu is able to stop the smugglers and save the clan, several good people have died in the process

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** [[spoiler: The third game. While Kiryu is able to stop the smugglers and save the clan, several good people have died in the processprocess.]]
17th May '13 11:48:39 AM Hardman5509
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* BewareTheNiceOnes: The other side of Kazuma, once he has been pushed. Don't push him.

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* BewareTheNiceOnes: The other side of Kazuma, once he has been pushed. Don't push him.
** Akiyama is harder to push (Given his mostly carefree nature) but misuse money or people in any way and he will literally kick your ass to curb.



** [[spoiler: The third game. While Kiryu is able to stop the smugglers and save the clan, several good people have died in the process



* BreakableWeapons: The series does have a counter to how many hits the weapon can take. Equipable weapons can be repaired...for a hefty price.

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* BreakableWeapons: The series does have include a exact counter to how many hits the weapon can take.take before it breaks. Equipable weapons can be repaired...for a hefty price.



* DevelopingDoomedCharacters: One of the most criticized aspects of the third game is that the beggining (and one point in the middle) is spent taking care of the Sunsine Orphanage's children and their minial problems, as opposed to the dealings and conflicts of the Japanese mafia, which is the main hook of the series.

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* DevelopingDoomedCharacters: One of the most criticized aspects of the third game is that the beggining beginning (and one point in the middle) is spent taking care of the Sunsine Orphanage's children and their minial minimal problems, as opposed to the dealings and conflicts of the Japanese mafia, which is the main hook of the series.



** [[spoiler: The entire plot of Dead Souls is this. Kiryu and Goda aren't too please.]]

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** [[spoiler: The entire plot of Dead Souls is this. this in a nutshell. Kiryu and Goda aren't too please.pleased.]]
26th Mar '13 7:22:31 AM Larkmarn
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* ImpaledPalm: An uncommon HEAT action in Yakuza 3 and 4 when Kazuma is holding a knife near a wall is to throw the mook at the wall, then stabs his hand against the wall.
18th Mar '13 9:31:49 AM Socius
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** ''Of The End'' would count as a major one if it is part of the canon storyline as opposed to being Alternate Continuity.



** Averted in Dead Souls, it's impossible to kill a zombie with melee attacks, and Kiryu has a rough time when he [[spoiler: goes into the quarantine zone without any weapons.]]

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** Averted in Dead Souls, it's [[PaperFanOfDoom (usually)]] impossible to kill a zombie with melee attacks, and Kiryu has a rough time when he [[spoiler: goes into the quarantine zone without any weapons.]]
This list shows the last 10 events of 117. Show all.
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