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Like A Dragon: Ishin Producer Discusses Setting, Combat, New Content, and More

Like A Dragon: Ishin producer Hiroyuki Sakamoto recently shared details with fans about characters, combat, and more in the spinoff remake.

Like A Dragon: Ishin producer Hiroyuki Sakamoto recently discussed a plethora of details about the upcoming Yakuza spinoff, diving into the setting, characters, and more. Sega first revealed the remake of the 2014 Yakuza spinoff earlier this year, sending players to the samurai-dominated Bakumatsu period. The upcoming release next year will be the first time the game has released internationally with its previous PS3 and PS4 launch being Japan-only. Now, Sega has given fans a deeper look into everything coming with the Yakuza spinoff.

The original release of the Japan-only Ryu ga Gotoku Ishin whisked players away from the franchise's typical Japanese gangster thematic into a world of samurai. The release of Ishin pre-dated the high-profile releases of Yakuza 0 and Kiwami, which saw the franchise explode in popularity in Western markets. With the Yakuza franchise receiving several remakes of older games in the years since Ishin's launch, Sega announced in February that the spinoff would be making a return next year. Now, Hiroyuki Sakamoto is sharing plenty of details about Ishin. In an interview on Sega's official YouTube channel, Sakamoto gives fans a deep dive into Like A Dragon: Ishin, re-introducing elements of the original for Western audiences. Players will take control of Ryoma Sakamoto in his journey to track down the assailant who killed his father figure. The remake will retain the card-based skills of Like A Dragon: Ishin while "refreshing and upgrading the battle system." Several recognizable characters from the Yakuza franchise are also confirmed to return, playing different roles as Bakumatsu-era samurai. Sakamoto went in-depth on some of the new features coming with the Yakuza spinoff remake as well. Several new sub-stories will be added to Like A Dragon: Ishin along with an updated soundtrack, featuring both the original game's tracks as well as several popular songs from the series' history. Sakamoto also confirmed several Yakuza mini-games like chicken racing and karaoke will be returning in Ishin as well. The game's karaoke mini-game is set to feature both a new rendition of franchise staple "Bakamitai" as well as a brand-new song, which Sakamoto didn't want to spoil.

The announcement of Like A Dragon: Ishin coming to the West was just one of a trio of major announcements for the franchise earlier this year. Following its recent official name change to Like A Dragon, Sega officially announced Like A Dragon 8 in September with the next main-series game set to launch in 2024. Ryu ga Gotoku Studio also revealed the upcoming Like A Dragon: Gaiden for 2023, starring the franchise's original protagonist Kiryu following the events of Yakuza 6. Between Ishin, Like A Dragon 8, and Gaiden, fans of the franchise have plenty to look forward to in the coming years. Like A Dragon: Ishin! is scheduled to release on February 21st for PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X/S.

MICHAEL BRANDON INGRAM ( November 15, 2022)

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