Fans of Yakuza Sega’s iconic Japanese gangster series, have waited a long time to hear if the zombie-spin off Yakuza of The End would be coming stateside, and now it seems Sega has heard their pleas. Yakuza of the End will come to North America in 2012, but under the name Yakuza: Dead Souls and with all of the DLC from the Japanese release.

Yakuza: Dead Souls places players in the Red Light District of Tokyo as they face off against hordes of the undead. Apparently zombies aren’t the only threat in the area, as the game’s characters will also fight rival Yakuza members, offering more of a variety to the gameplay.

While unleashing their fury upon the living and undead alike, players will also be able to take control of one of four playable characters from the Yakuza franchise, including some villains from past games.

This will also be the first Yakuza title to allow for the use of firearms. In previous Yakuza titles, there was an emphasis on hand to hand combat and brawling. Now, players will be able to use a multitude of weapons to take out enemies, from pistols to rocket launchers. It’s safe to say that these gangsters will have more than enough firepower to hold back the zombie horde.

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LBVrdl9DIbM

To get an idea of the kind of carnage that Tokyo has been reduced to, and the insane weaponry the main characters will be using to fight it, take a look at these new screenshots:

Yakuza titles have generally taken a long time to be localized, leaving North American fans of the games in the dark for months following the release, with roughly a one year gap between the localization of both Yakuza 3 and Yakuza 4.

While this has been commonplace for years, the niche status the Yakuza titles have recieved has made some fans worried that Sega would decide that localization of certain titles may not be profitable, especially with a title like Yakuza: Dead Souls, which is not integral to the main storyline.

One thing that is still not clear is why Sega decided to change the name from Yakuza: Of The End to Yakuza: Dead Souls. Aside from the fact that ‘Of The End’ is a fragmented sentence (depending on how one reads it) the name does not seem like something that could alienate Western audiences. It’s possible that Sega is trying to capitalize on the hype of games like Demon’s Souls and Dark Souls, the former of which saw unexpected success in North America.

It may not be arriving in North America as soon as its fans may like, but having a set date – or year, in this case – is better than nothing.

Yakuza: Dead Souls is set to hit the PS3 in 2012 though no exact release date has been given.

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