Sega’s US marketing department said they are not going to bring Yakuza 3 to the west:
The reason as to why they won’t be bringing the game over is simple: it won’t sell, he told me. They have a firm stance to believe that would be the case, too. Yakuza 2 has only sold around 40k copies in America on the PS2. The numbers for the original Yakuza aren’t much better.
Sega is wildly out of touch with western gamers.
WESTERN ENTHUSIASTS DO NOT BUY GAMES ON PS2!
As a publisher, you really couldn’t kill your sales any more by beating customers away with stick. I don’t care how good your game is; if it’s only on PS2, the press will ignore it and the western enthusiast market won’t buy it. This may not be the most rational thing in the world, but that’s how it is and how it has been.
Even Final Fantasy XII, which back at it’s release, was one of the biggest, hottest, most reputable series in all of video games, was mostly ignored because it was on old-gen hardware. And that was released in late 2006, when the PS2 still had a small shred of enthusiast mindshare left. Yakuza 2 came out in late 2008, long after any enthusiast gamers were remotely interested in buying new PS2 games.
Yakuza 2 wasn’t even one of the few PS2 titles that actually rings up new-unit sales by catering to a certain non-enthusiast nichce like Guitar Hero or Iron Man. Yakuza caters to exactly the type of gamer who stopped buying PS2 games the day after the PS3 was released.
Yakuza 2 was a better game than Sega’s other late 2008 game: Valkyria Chronicles. The difference was, Valkyria Chronicles was on a current-gen system, and therefore was able to get strong word of mouth buzz, and half-decent sales.
What else is there to say: Sega is clueless, and it’s unfortunate to see such quality software and entertainment be buried by such bone-headed business decisions.
Written by: Darrin
- Contributing Editor