A pair of Yakuza games for the PSP, unreleased in the West, are about to (unofficially) see the light of day.
Sega’s Yakuza is one of the company’s flagship series, iconic for many things including its weirdness and wackiness. While most of the games have been released outside of Japan, two of them weren’t.
Two Yakuza titles for the PSP, Kurohyou: Ryu ga Gotoku Shinshou (Black Panther: Like a Dragon New Chapter) and Kurohyou 2: Ryu ga Gotoku Ashura-Hen (Black Panther 2: Like a Dragon Ashura Chapter), were released in 2010 and 2012 respectively. Both titles were released in Japan exclusively, with no plans for an official English translation.
However, both titles are getting English fan translations to appease the English-speaking Yakuza audiences, with one of them (Black Panther 2: Like a Dragon Ashura Chapter) available right now. In an interview with Digital Trends, it was revealed that a group of Yakuza fans that work as Team K4L are currently working in translating both games into English. Digital Trends spoke to John “AugmentedSmoke”, who is involved in the team, who relayed how long the team have been working on the project.
“This project started in February 2021 and just had its release recently on January 7, 2022. Usually, projects like this take a lot longer, but we’ve been lucky in that the talent and effort of our team has really sped up our progress.”
John also explained the difficulties faced by them team during the localisation and translation process.
“There are quite a lot of technical issues that you go through when trying to translate a game like this. I would almost describe it as having the game trying to work against you at some points. It’s definitely not as easy as just inserting the English text into the files and calling it a day. You have to take into account the art assets, technical limitations, and then all the difficult parts of translating Japanese into English, as some things just do not make sense in a direct translation.
There is definitely an art to it, which, I think, a lot of people don’t realize.”
While the team has just released the English patch for Black Panther 2: Like a Dragon Ashura Chapter (which requires the ISO for the game itself), the patch for Black Panther: Like a Dragon New Chapter is planned for release at some point this year.