Wed. Apr 17th, 2024

The Yakuza series has been a beloved franchise for many gamers around the world, known for its gripping storyline, memorable characters, and intense combat. With the release of Yakuza: Like a Dragon, fans were left wondering if there would be another installment in the series. In this article, we will explore the possibility of another Yakuza: Like a Dragon, and what the future may hold for the Yakuza series. So, let’s dive in and find out what’s in store for this beloved franchise.

Quick Answer:
It is currently unknown whether there will be another installment in the Yakuza series. The most recent game, Yakuza: Like a Dragon, was released in 2020 and was well-received by fans and critics alike. The Yakuza series has a long history and has evolved significantly over the years, with each game offering something new and exciting for players to experience. While it is impossible to know for certain what the future holds, it is likely that the Yakuza series will continue to evolve and offer new and exciting experiences for players to enjoy.

The Evolution of the Yakuza Series

The Beginning: Yakuza (2005)

Features and Gameplay

  • Story-driven gameplay: The Yakuza series debuted in 2005 with its first installment, Yakuza. The game featured a compelling narrative that centered around the protagonist, Kazama Kiryu, and his involvement in the Japanese underworld. The storyline was well-crafted, providing players with an immersive experience that allowed them to explore the dark and gritty world of the Yakuza.
  • Realistic combat system: Yakuza’s combat system was designed to be as realistic as possible, allowing players to engage in hand-to-hand combat using various techniques and moves. The game’s combat system was highly praised for its attention to detail, with each strike and block feeling like it had weight and impact.
  • Side quests and mini-games: Yakuza also featured a variety of side quests and mini-games that added to the overall gameplay experience. These included mini-games such as pocket racing and fishing, as well as side quests that provided additional context and depth to the game’s story.

Impact on the Gaming Industry

  • Introduction of Japanese culture to Western audiences: Yakuza was one of the first games to introduce Western audiences to Japanese culture, specifically the Yakuza, a Japanese organized crime syndicate. The game provided players with an inside look into the Yakuza’s world, giving them a glimpse into their traditions, customs, and way of life.
  • Influence on open-world game design: Yakuza’s open-world design was highly influential, with many subsequent open-world games adopting similar design elements. The game’s use of a living, breathing city environment, with NPCs going about their daily lives, was a revolutionary concept at the time and has since become a staple of open-world game design.

The Rise of Kiryu: Yakuza 2-5

The Yakuza series saw a significant shift in its direction during the release of Yakuza 2, which marked the beginning of the rise of Kiryu Kazama as the main protagonist. In the following installments, Yakuza 3, 4, and 5, Kiryu’s character and story were further developed, and the gameplay mechanics were expanded.

  • Developed storyline and characters: In Yakuza 2, Kiryu’s backstory was explored in more depth, and his relationship with his adopted daughter, Haruka, was established. In Yakuza 3, the story delved into the political intrigue within the Tojo Clan, and Kiryu’s role as a mediator between warring factions. Yakuza 4 introduced a unique perspective by featuring multiple playable characters, each with their own storylines, and in Yakuza 5, Kiryu’s final story was concluded, as he fought against the evil forces that threatened the city.
  • Expanded combat system: The brawler-style combat system was refined in Yakuza 2, and in Yakuza 3, a new heat system was introduced, where players could build up heat by committing crimes or helping people, which could then be used to access new areas and content. Yakuza 4 and 5 continued to improve the combat system, with more advanced techniques and a focus on player progression.
  • New mini-games and side quests: The Yakuza series is known for its diverse range of mini-games and side quests, and Yakuza 2-5 were no exception. Players could engage in various activities, such as playing hostess clubs, managing a cabaret club, and participating in a wide range of side quests that added depth and variety to the gameplay experience.

The rise of Kiryu Kazama as the main protagonist and the expansion of the gameplay mechanics in Yakuza 2-5 solidified the status of the Yakuza series as a successful franchise. Kiryu’s character became a gaming icon, and the series gained a dedicated fanbase. The Yakuza series demonstrated the potential for a unique blend of storytelling, engaging characters, and diverse gameplay, which has since influenced many other games in the action and adventure genres.

The Change of Perspective: Yakuza 6

The sixth installment of the Yakuza series, Yakuza 6: The Song of Life, marked a significant change in perspective for the franchise. This shift was reflected in the game’s features and gameplay mechanics.

  • Focus on a new protagonist, Haruka: For the first time in the series, Yakuza 6 introduced a new protagonist named Haruka, who players assumed the role of. This change in perspective allowed the game to explore new storylines and characters while still maintaining the series’ core elements.
  • Introduction of new gameplay mechanics: In addition to the change in protagonist, Yakuza 6 introduced several new gameplay mechanics, such as the “Dragon of Dojima” system, which allowed players to control Kiryu, the previous protagonist, in certain sections of the game. The game also introduced a more streamlined battle system, focusing on real-time combat and eliminating the mini-games that had been a staple of the series.
  • Emphasis on character development and storytelling: Yakuza 6 placed a strong emphasis on character development and storytelling, with a more narrative-driven approach than previous installments. The game featured a longer storyline and more character-driven subplots, further emphasizing the shift in perspective.
    The changes implemented in Yakuza 6 had a significant impact on the gaming industry, broadening the scope of the series and showcasing the potential for new storylines and characters.

  • Broadened the scope of the series: By introducing a new protagonist and focusing on character development and storytelling, Yakuza 6 expanded the series’ narrative possibilities. This shift allowed the franchise to explore new directions and create fresh storylines, ensuring its continued relevance in the gaming industry.

  • Showcased the potential for new storylines and characters: The changes made in Yakuza 6 demonstrated the potential for new storylines and characters within the series. By introducing a new protagonist and shifting the focus from Kiryu, the franchise was able to explore new narrative avenues and maintain its status as a leader in the action RPG genre.

In conclusion, the sixth installment of the Yakuza series, Yakuza 6: The Song of Life, marked a significant change in perspective for the franchise. This shift was reflected in the game’s features and gameplay mechanics, which introduced a new protagonist, new gameplay mechanics, and a greater emphasis on character development and storytelling. The impact of these changes was substantial, broadening the scope of the series and showcasing the potential for new storylines and characters, ensuring the continued success and relevance of the Yakuza franchise in the gaming industry.

The Turning Point: Yakuza: Like a Dragon

  • Completely new protagonist, Ichiban Kasuga: After seven mainline games featuring Kazama Kiryu, Yakuza: Like a Dragon introduced a fresh face as the protagonist. Ichiban Kasuga, a former yakuza member who served 18 years in prison for a crime he didn’t commit, takes center stage in this eighth installment. With his optimistic outlook and unique fighting style, Ichiban brings a fresh perspective to the series.
  • Real-time combat system: In a departure from the previous games’ brawler-style combat, Yakuza: Like a Dragon introduces a real-time combat system. Players control Ichiban and his party of characters in a turn-based battle system, with each character possessing their own unique abilities and movesets. This change adds a new layer of strategy and depth to the gameplay.
  • More emphasis on RPG elements: The Yakuza series has always had RPG elements, but Yakuza: Like a Dragon takes it to a new level. Players can level up their characters, manage their stats, and upgrade their equipment. The game also features a robust crafting system, allowing players to create their own weapons and items. These RPG mechanics add a new level of customization and progression to the game.
  • Renewed interest in the series: Yakuza: Like a Dragon’s success has sparked renewed interest in the series. The game received critical acclaim and has sold well, leading to a resurgence in popularity for the franchise.
  • Positive reception from fans and critics: Fans and critics alike have praised Yakuza: Like a Dragon for its engaging story, memorable characters, and innovative gameplay. The game has been hailed as a standout title in the JRPG genre and a strong entry in the Yakuza series. Its success has set high expectations for future installments in the series.

Speculating the Future of the Yakuza Series

Will There Be Another Yakuza: Like a Dragon?

Evidence for a Sequel

Positive Reception from Fans and Critics

The reception for Yakuza: Like a Dragon has been overwhelmingly positive, with fans and critics alike praising its story, characters, and gameplay mechanics. The game holds a score of 82 on Metacritic, making it one of the highest-rated games in the series.

Open-Ended Ending of Yakuza: Like a Dragon

The ending of Yakuza: Like a Dragon is open-ended, leaving room for potential sequels to explore further storylines and character arcs. The game’s story concludes with a cliffhanger, suggesting that there is more to come for the series.

Teasers and Hints from the Developers

In interviews and social media posts, the developers of Yakuza: Like a Dragon have hinted at the possibility of a sequel. They have discussed their plans for the future of the series and have not ruled out the possibility of another game featuring the characters and setting of Yakuza: Like a Dragon.

Evidence Against a Sequel

Change in Protagonist and Setting

One of the main reasons why there may not be another Yakuza: Like a Dragon is the change in protagonist and setting. The game features a new protagonist, Ichiban Kasuga, and takes place in a different city from the previous games. This change may indicate that the series is moving in a new direction, and that a sequel to Yakuza: Like a Dragon may not be a priority.

Possible Conclusion of the Current Story Arc

The events of Yakuza: Like a Dragon may mark the conclusion of the current story arc in the series. The game wraps up many of the storylines that have been present throughout the series, and it is possible that the developers may be looking to move on to new projects.

Shift in Focus to Other Projects

The developers of Yakuza: Like a Dragon, Ryu Ga Gotoku Studio, have been working on several other projects, including the upcoming game, Judgment, and the remake of the original Yakuza game. This shift in focus may suggest that the studio is not currently planning on producing another Yakuza: Like a Dragon game.

Overall, while there is evidence to suggest that there may be another Yakuza: Like a Dragon, there are also several reasons why a sequel may not be in the works. Only time will tell what the future holds for the Yakuza series.

Other Possibilities for the Yakuza Series

Spin-offs and Side Games

  • One potential direction for the Yakuza series is the creation of spin-offs and side games that focus on different characters and storylines. This would allow players to explore the world of Yakuza from various perspectives and potentially introduce new mechanics and gameplay elements.
  • For example, a spin-off game could be developed that focuses on the life of a junior yakuza member as they rise through the ranks, or a side game that explores the world of hostess clubs and the challenges faced by women working in the industry.
  • Another spin-off game could be set in a different region or city, allowing players to experience the unique culture and atmosphere of a new location while still maintaining the core elements of the Yakuza series.

Expanding the World of Yakuza

  • Another possibility for the Yakuza series is to expand the world of Yakuza even further by introducing new locations, characters, and storylines. This could involve developing games set in different time periods, such as the post-war era or the 1980s, or exploring new regions of Japan that have not been featured in previous games.
  • Additionally, the series could introduce new factions and organizations that players can interact with, such as rival yakuza groups or corrupt police forces. This would add depth and complexity to the world of Yakuza and provide players with even more opportunities to engage with the game’s characters and storylines.

New Protagonist and Setting

  • Finally, the Yakuza series could potentially introduce a new protagonist and setting in future games. This would allow the series to evolve and adapt to changing times and player preferences, while still maintaining the core elements that have made Yakuza: Like a Dragon such a success.
  • A new protagonist could be introduced, such as a young up-and-coming yakuza member or a former gang member seeking redemption. Alternatively, the series could explore new regions and cities outside of Japan, such as Tokyo or Osaka, providing players with a fresh perspective on the world of Yakuza.
  • Regardless of who the new protagonist is or where the game is set, it is clear that the Yakuza series has a bright future ahead of it, with many exciting possibilities for growth and expansion.

FAQs

1. What is Yakuza: Like a Dragon?

Yakuza: Like a Dragon is an action role-playing game developed and published by Sega. It is the eighth main entry in the Yakuza series and was released in 2019 for PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and Windows. The game features a new protagonist, Kiryu Kazama, who is no longer the series’ main character, and a turn-based combat system.

2. Is Yakuza: Like a Dragon the last game in the Yakuza series?

No, Yakuza: Like a Dragon is not the last game in the Yakuza series. While it is the eighth main entry in the series, Sega has confirmed that the Yakuza series will continue, with future games featuring new protagonists and storylines.

3. When will the next Yakuza game be released?

There is no official word on when the next Yakuza game will be released. However, Sega has stated that the Yakuza series will continue, so it is likely that a new game will be released at some point in the future.

4. Who will be the protagonist of the next Yakuza game?

It is not yet known who will be the protagonist of the next Yakuza game. The series has featured several different protagonists over the years, including Kiryu Kazama, Goro Majima, and Ichiban Kasuga, so it is possible that the next game could feature a new character as the main protagonist.

5. Will the next Yakuza game continue the story from Yakuza: Like a Dragon?

It is not yet known whether the next Yakuza game will continue the story from Yakuza: Like a Dragon. The Yakuza series has often featured multiple protagonists and storylines, so it is possible that the next game could explore a different aspect of the series’ world and characters.

Yakuza: Like a Dragon (dunkview)

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