RGG Studio Boss Explains Why The Yatsui Series Was Read Like Dragons In The West

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Yakuza is a name that has become widely known in western territories like the United States, but in Japan it has been traditionalized as Gotowashi, which translates to Like a Dragon. Now, with the announcement of three new Like a Dragon games, it looks like Yakuza is being retired for good.

In a recently informal interview on IGN’s website, director Masayoshi Yokoyama discussed the Yakuza moniker move, explaining that the move was basically attempted with Yakuza.

In [Yakuza 7], Yakuza, just like A Dragon; so we thought if we suddenly came out of this game out of nowhere without Yakuza in it, people would be like. What is this game ? What’s up with that? This name said that the words “like a dragon” sound very good. Now, we couldn’t be sure we’d eliminate Yakuza and just repeat that word with like a dragon, Yokoyama said.

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When asked if there was a theme behind the change, Yokoyama replied that the name didn’t really make sense with games like Ishin, which were set in the 19th century.

While we’re talking, especially about crime, we’re not talking about Yakuza, Yokoyama said. It’s just not appropriate for us to include them in that name. If we keep the accent, we will be Yakuza: Ishin. It’s not Yakuza, Ishin! That’s not what it’s about. Something like a dragon – Ishin! logic.

It’s a flop. On the other hand, he later became more popular thanks to Yakuza. For many fanatics, Yakuza has long ceased to mean, but it was already set to stay.

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The name change coincides with the start of a new era, which has recently seen several top executives leave Toshihiro Nagoshi. With Yokoyama now fully in charge, RGG Studio is gearing up to release three new games in the series, including Like a Dragon 8 and a Kazuma Kiryu-focused spin-off titled The Man Who Erased His Name. Along with the name change, RGG Studio will also be looking into moving the series to Unreal Engine 5.

In the future, the series is like a dragon: Ishin, a remake of the 19th century Japanese spin-off. There’s our full impressions of The Like a Drago: Ishin here, with a release date set for February 2023.


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