Like a dragon: Ishin! The remake is evidence of the popularity of the Yakuza in the West


Now is the time to become a fan of the Yakuza series. The franchise, which is now known as Like A Dragon, recently announced three new games for fans. Not only the next main part of the series, officially called Like A Dragon 8, was announced, but also two additional titles. The first is a remake of “Like a Dragon: Ishin!” in 2014, a spin—off set in historical Japan that was never originally released in the West. The second, Like a Dragon Gaiden: The Man Who Erased His Name, will return Kazuma Kiryu as the main character. He will tell a story that bridges the gap between Yakuza 6 and Yakuza: Like a Dragon (Yakuza 7), shedding light on Kiryu’s activities between the two games.

The growing popularity of Like a Dragon over the past few years has paved the way for Like a Dragon: Ishin! finally getting a western release that some thought would never happen, and that’s a great triumph for developer Ryu Ga Gotoku. The original game was the spiritual successor to Like a Dragon: Kenzan!, a PS3 game released in Japan in 2008. The game takes place in Japan at the end of the Edo period. the murder of the foster father. Fleeing to Kyoto, he assumes a new identity and sets out to avenge the murder.

As a dragon, Popularity in the West is at an all-time high

The Yakuza series began on PS2 in 2005. The first game, called simply Yakuza in the west, was a violent crime drama that featured several key components of the franchise, including the protagonist Kazama Kiryu and the fictional city of Kamurocho. based on Tokyo’s Kabukicho entertainment district. Many praised the developers’ determination to stay true to the source material over the years, and the realistic setting of the game was always the highlight. The first two games became hits in Japan and sold well in the West, but only after the release of the prequel Yakuza 0 in 2015, the game began to gain momentum outside Japan.

Yakuza 0 was followed by remakes of the first two games, as well as Yakuza 6: The Song of Life and the last part of Yakuza: Like a Dragon. The latter was the first game in the main series to offer English dubbing after the original PS2 game, which is another sign that the series has begun to attract a new audience. With each of these iterations, the popularity of the franchise has grown exponentially.

Like a Dragon: Ishin!, however, is a title that Western fans thought they would never see. Ryu Ga Gotoku expressed concern that the Japanese setting of the game in the late 1800s would seem alien to a Western audience. Some of the words and themes used in the original game are unfamiliar even in modern Japan, not to mention the Western world, and this was enough to convince the developer that the game would probably fail a bit if released in the West.

However, all this has begun to change thanks to the growing fan base of the series, as well as the dramatic increase in the popularity of Japanese-style role-playing games in recent years, such as Ghost of Tsushima and Nioh 2. In a recent interview, Fanbyte Executive Producer Masayoshi Yokoyama said that the team paid attention, in particular, to Ghost of Tsushima and how popular the game with a very Japanese setting created by the Americans has become. This gave Ryu Ga Gotoku confidence that the game could be a success in America.

The original Like a Dragon: Ishin! It was released for PS3 and PS4 in 2014. He took all the characters, themes and gameplay elements of Yakuza and placed them in a historical Japanese setting. Judging by the footage published at the moment, the remake is close to the original. Unlike other games that used the Dragon Engine, which was the main engine that the developer has used in every release since Yakuza 6, Like a Dragon: Ishin! uses Unreal Engine 4. The game should satisfy the Yakuza itch for fans who are patiently waiting for the next part, and changing the settings should give a long-awaited new experience.


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