Sega confirmed during this week’s PlayStation Experience event that a prequel in its long-running Yakuza series is due to launch for the PlayStation 4 in North America in 2016.
The publisher also nailed down a release date for its promised localization of Yakuza 5, announcing that it will premiere digitally for the PlayStation 4 this week.
Tracing its origins back to the PlayStation 2, Sega’s Yakuza series features a crime drama narrative that unfolds over the course of an open-world adventure. Players navigate the crowded streets of Japan as they complete missions and hunt for rival gang members throughout each mainline series entry.
The Yakuza series made the jump to the PlayStation 3 with 2010’s Yakuza 3, and a sequel followed in 2011. Though a fifth game in the series hit Japan in 2012, a localization never surfaced in the years afterward, leaving fans wondering if future Yakuza games would ever arrive stateside.
Sega finally confirmed its plans to localize Yakuza 5 earlier this year, revealing that an English-language version would launch digitally for the PlayStation 3 via the PlayStation Network by the end of 2015. After missing a scheduled November launch date, Sega finalized its release plans, and Yakuza 5 will make its North American debut on December 8th.
After confirming the sequel’s release date this week, Sega revealed that it also plans to localize the PlayStation 4 prequel game Yakuza 0. Released in Japan earlier this year as Ryu ga Gotoku Zero: Chikai no Basho, the game takes place in the years leading up to the events in the original Yakuza game.
Set on the streets of Kabukicho and Shinjuku Golden Gai in 1988, Yakuza 0 features Kazuma Kiryu and Goro Majima in starring roles. Yakuza 0 features open-ended gameplay in the same vein as its series successors, and marks the series’ first stateside appearance on the PlayStation 4.
Yakuza 5 premieres for the PlayStation 3 on December 8th. A release date for Yakuza 0 was not announced.