Yakuza: Like a Dragon
|Yakuza: Like a Dragon|
Japanese box art
|Developer(s)||Ryu Ga Gotoku Studio|
Yakuza: Like a Dragon (Japanese: 龍が如く7 光と闇の行方, Hepburn: Ryū ga Gotoku 7: Hikari to Yami no Yukue, "Like a Dragon 7: Whereabouts of Light and Darkness") is a role-playing game[a] developed and published by Sega for the PlayStation 4. It is the eighth main release in the Yakuza series, and was released in Japan on January 16, 2020 and worldwide later that year. Featuring a new protagonist and a change in gameplay genre, Yakuza: Like a Dragon can be considered a soft reboot of the series.
For the first time in the Yakuza series, the focus shifts away from Tokyo and the game's fictional recreation of Kabukichō, called Kamurocho. Instead, most of the gameplay takes place in the Yokohama district of Isezaki Ijincho, which is based on Yokohama's real-life Isezakichō district. However, Kamurocho, and the Osaka district Sotenbori (another area from previous Yakuza games, based on the real-life Dōtonbori district), will be featured in the game. Yakuza: Like a Dragon is also the first main game not to have Kazuma Kiryu as its protagonist, introducing the new character Ichiban Kasuga instead. Sega have described Kasuga as being much more outspoken and emotive than Kiryu.
Another departure from previous Yakuza games is the battle system. Instead of the real-time beat 'em up mechanics of previous games, Yakuza: Like a Dragon features turn-based RPG type combat, with a four-person battle team. Sega have said that they wanted to try a different style of gameplay, but that if it is badly received, they will return to real-time combat for future games.
Alongside Kasuga, other characters that can be recruited to the player's party include Namba, Koichi Adachi, and Saeko Mukouda. Mukouda is the first female fighting character in the Yakuza series who is directly controlled by the player. Previous Yakuza series protagonist Kazuma Kiryu also makes an appearance in the game, alongside Goro Majima and Taiga Saejima, this time as main bosses initially and then as party assists.
In the year 2001, Ichiban Kasuga, a member of Tojo Clan's Arakawa Family is asked by the family's patriarch Masumi Arakawa to go to prison for a murder that he didn't commit, hoping that this will make him a hero in the Tojo Clan. In 2019, Kasuga is released from prison only to find that nobody remembers him; he goes to confront Arakawa, who shoots him in the chest. Several days later, Kasuga wakes up half-naked under a pile of trash and eventually finds out that he is in the Yokohama district of Isezaki Ijincho.
The game was initially announced on August 26, 2017, alongside Fist of the North Star: Lost Paradise and Yakuza Online. During development, the project was code-named Shin Ryu ga Gotoku, literally "New Like a Dragon" or "Like a New Dragon," or "Shin-Yakuza" in English. SEGA announced that the game's story was completed at the end of May 2019. Yakuza series creator Toshihiro Nagoshi said that the new style of logo was done to reflect Ichiban Kasuga's differing personality compared to Kazuma Kiryu.
Yakuza: Like a Dragon was the bestselling game during its first 4 days on sale in Japan, with 156,993 retail copies being sold.
- Categorized as a "Dramatic RPG" on SEGA's official Japanese Ryu ga Gotoku 7 website
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