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[QUOTE]I enjoyed Yakuza 1 for the most part, but by the end of the game I was just trying to beat it just tot get it over with. The fighting system was alright, although I felt it could use a bit more polisihing up and more variety. The story started getting a bit on the confusing side towards the end as well. So what can I expect from 2? How different is the fighting system? Are the mini-games worth caring about this time around? Basically any non-storyline spoiler details anyone who has played the game can give would be appreciated. [/QUOTE] From the short amount of time I've put into Yakuza 2 it seems like the game is more robust but it is more of the same. Take the fighting for example. While I'm not yet able to pull off counters, air throws or other crazy crap that Kazuma could do late in the first game, Y2 is good enough to start you off with what feels like a complete, albeit minimal, move list. This was a nice change from the first game where the beginning was hampered by not having a large enough Heat gauge or enough moves to build its meter. Another change I came across was that after hanging out at the driving range for awhile I managed to teach Kazuma a new fighting move. I doubt knowing that move is going to make or break the game but it was a cute little addition to playing the side quests and I guess I'll have nice form when I hit people with a 9 iron. The side missions still feel optional. Outside of knocking a few buckets of balls around I haven't really gotten into any of the more intensive mini games so I don't know if there is a large enough reward for working through them if you aren't thrilled with the task at hand. The missions you can pick up on the street still seem to consist of beating people up or playing UFO games. At least none of it feels like I'm obligated to fool around with it if I don't want to. I much prefer that approach as opposed to something like the Warriors, where the entire game was built around mini games I hated. Yakuza 2 seems to be following the same path as its predecessor where a large, increasingly absurd plot is broken up by Shenmue-like opportunites for the player to find new and ridiculous ways to make your character waste time. Being able to equip two wristwatches and then get treated to a shot of Kazuma sitting in a restaurant booth ordering food is something that amuses me far more than it should. I also know that my reasons for playing a game are often very different from the reasons other people play a game. So while I'm not going to be able to shut up about this game for some time I can also recognize that Yakuza 2 is more of an upgrade than a monumental leap forward.
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