The Yakuza franchise features a lot of product placement in order to replicate the feeling of a living city in the various red light districts through the food, drink, electronics and entertainment provided. This page lists the real-life brands that appear in the game.
Foods and drinksEdit
In Judgment, Asahi replaces Suntory as the alcoholic brand for the series. Nikka and Asahi beer replaces various Suntory brands for alcoholic and soft drinks. Additionally, before Judgment, the real-life Sapporo landmark advertisement for Nikka Whisky, an Asahi-owned brand, was featured in Tsukimino in Yakuza 5.
Another long-running tie-in agreement is with American drinks corporation Brown-Forman. A number of Yakuza titles feature the Brown-Forman-owned Jack Daniel's and Early Times brands. In Judgment, additional labels such as Camus, Woodford Reserve, Bushmills, and Ben Nevis became available as whiskey and scotch brands.
Imuraya is a confectionery producer whose products can be purchased from convenience stores in Yakuza 6 and Yakuza Kiwami 2, as well as having billboard advertisements in the games.
Orion beer, the most popular brand of beer in Okinawa, appears in advertisements and branded Chinese Lanterns in Yakuza 3's Downtown Ryukyu. As a result of its partnership with Asahi to promote the brand outside of Okinawa, Orion also appears as a purchasable beer brand in Judgment.
A number of PepsiCo soft drink products, including Pepsi NEX, 7UP, Gatorade, and Mountain Dew can be purchased in certain games. There is a scene where Yoshitaka Mine is seen drinking from a Gatorade bottle in the original Yakuza 3, but the logo was deleted in the remaster as the licensing deal with PepsiCo had expired.
Yakuza 0 and Yakuza Kiwami feature the Pizza-La brand. The brand's presence is most notable in the Yakuza 0 substory Passport to Pizza, where Kiryu mistakes a foreign woman needing a visa for saying pizza, and thus orders a pizza from Pizza-La.
The Suntory drinks brand has had a long-running product placement deal with the Yakuza series, their products having appeared in every Yakuza game. The various bars in the series offer a variety of alcoholic beverages that are produced and/or distributed by Suntory in Japan. This includes their own branded drinks, as well as foreign brands such as Carlsberg, Jim Beam, Beefeater Gin, and SKYY Vodka to name a few. In games prior to Yakuza 6, bartenders serving a Suntory liquor would go into a lengthy speech extolling the virtues of the particular drink ordered. In addition to the liquors available at bars, Suntory soft drinks and beers can be purchased from convenience stores and vending machines.
There are a very large number of real-life eateries that have appeared in the series as tie-ins, ranging from national chains to independent cafés.
- Blue Seal Ice Cream, an Okinawan ice cream parlour chain, appears in Yakuza 3's Downtown Ryukyu.
- CURRY SHOP S, a local Sapporo eatery, is featured in Tsukimino in Yakuza 5.
- Fuji Soba, a soba restaurant, replaces Pronto on Nakamichi Street, Kamurocho, from Yakuza 0 onwards.
- Gindaco Highball Tavern, a Takoyaki restaurant and bar. It has locations in Kamurocho and Tsukimino.
- Gyoza no Ohsho, a Gyoza chain. Appears in Tsukimino in Yakuza 5.
- Gyu-Kaku, a Japanese barbecue chain. Appears in Judgment.
- Ikinari Steak, a steak restaurant, appears just east of the batting cages from Yakuza 6 onwards. Kunio Ichinose, the firm's real-life owner, makes an appearance as a friend in Judgment.
- Izakaya Hanako, an Izakaya-type restaurant with scantily-clad young waitresses, appears in Tsukimino.
- Matsuo Jingisukan, a lamb barbecue restaurant, appears in Tsukimino.
- Matsuya, a beef bowl fast-food restaurant, appears in Kamurocho in all the games up to Yakuza 5, subsequently being replaced by a generic restaurant based on the chain called Akaushimaru.
- Quickly, a bubble tea stand, appears in Downtown Ryukyu in Yakuza 3.
- Ringer Hut, a noodle dish restaurant chain, is featured from Yakuza 0 onwards.
- Sam's Maui, a real-world Hawaiian-themed teppanyaki restaurant, appears in Yakuza 3's Downtown Ryukyu.
- Sumire, a ramen bar, is situated in Tsukimino.
- Sushi Zanmai, a sushi restaurant chain. There are locations in Nagasugai and Tsukimino in Yakuza 5, with a Kamurocho location opening in later games, replacing the Akaushimaru at the southern end of Millennium Tower Street East.
- Watami Izakaya, a location which Kiryu takes hostesses on dates in Yakuza 4. As well as Japan, this company has other branches in other parts of Asia, such as China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Singapore, Malaysia, The Philippines and South Korea.
- Zuboraya, a real pufferfish restaurant chain in Osaka, known for its large and elaborate lantern displays, pictured. In Yakuza 2, there were two locations, in Osaka's Sotenbori and Shinseicho districts. Other games set in Sotenbori also have the corresponding restaurant.
Entertainment and shopsEdit
Don Quijote stores are found in all Yakuza games, as well as Sotenbori and Tsukimino locations in games set in these locations. A somewhat anachronistic version even appears in Kyoto in Ryū ga Gotoku Ishin!.
Since Yakuza 0, the Karaoke minigame uses Joysound software. Billboards for the brand are also seen in Yakuza Kiwami.
A popular disco that operated during the height of Japan's bubble economy in the 1980s, and relaunched in recent years. In Yakuza 0, Maharaja discos can be visited in both Kamurocho and Sotenbori.
Given that they are the publishers of Yakuza, it followed that SEGA would feature their own brand significantly in the games. A chain of arcades called Club SEGA has appeared throughout the series, with the largest and most prominent arcade being a fixture in Kamurocho's Theater Square. In these arcades, the player can play various SEGA games such as UFO Catcher, Virtua Fighter, Super Hang-On, and Space Harrier. There are also posters of numerous SEGA titles on the walls of these arcades. In Yakuza 0, there is a MegaDrive toy that can be won from prize machines. In Yakuza Kiwami 2, it is also possible to play Toylets in a Club SEGA restroom. The television in New Serena in Yakuza 3 is branded Sega.
Steinway and SonsEdit
- Real world store item and business names are written in block capitals in the English localization of the original PlayStation 3 version of Yakuza 3.
- Yakuza 5 features so many real-life restaurants that the developers were ultimately forced to use pre-rendered and even photograph-based background sprites rather than modelling the restaurants' interiors in 3D.
- There are a number of Kamurocho businesses that share names with places in real-life Shinjuku, including Alps, Pronto, Ebisuya, and Kotobuki Pharmacy. There is no evidence to show that these are actual tie-ins however.