Future ‘Yakuza’ games could take place outside of Japan

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Focusing on the criminal fraternities of Japan, the Yakuza The action RPG series may seem inherently Japanese, but future games in the series could take place far from the land of the rising sun.

This is according to Kazuki Hosokawa, director of Lost judgment, the next spin-off of Sega’s detective saga. In an interview with The player, Hosokawa said future games in the franchise could take characters “to new lands with new places to explore, battles to fight and mysteries to uncover.”

How fans of the show would react to this is another matter. Since Yakuza debuted on PS2 in 2005, an essential part of its charm has been how ingrained it is in Japanese culture, from the detailed recreation of real-world locations, only loosely fictionalized under variant names – the true Kabuki-cho being pseudonym Kamuro -cho, for example – to contemporary nightlife staples, with characters visiting hostess bars or spending time at karaoke.

Yakuza: Like a dragon. Credit: Sega

However, developer Ryu Ga Gotoku Studio has also proven to be more than capable of evolving the series in interesting ways, with many spinoffs over the past 16 years highlighting the versatility of the property. Yakuza saw games set in feudal Japan, a zombie apocalypse, and even a crossover based on long-running manga and anime series Fist of the North Star, while the two Judgement the games take place on the other side of the law from the base games.

Even the main series entries mixed things up more and more, with the most recent – Yakuza: like a dragon – switch to a whole new protagonist and opt for a turn-based combat system. This was a big change for the series, but it turned out to be successful enough that turn-based is now the Yakuza standard games, in the future.

While there is no news of the next one Yakuza game again, with Lost judgment The next in the larger franchise to be released when it arrives on Xbox Series X, Xbox One, PS5, and PS4 on September 24, Hosokawa’s reflections could indicate where the series is going.

In other Japanese news, CD Projekt Red performs a Kickstarter for a new manga that reinvents The witcher as a Yokai hunter in feudal Japan.

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