Potential for another Like A Dragon (Yakuza) remake *if* Ishin performs well

by Danny Craig  · 
Updated
Potential for another Like A Dragon (Yakuza) remake *if* Ishin performs well
RGG Studio

Ryu Ga Gotoku (RGG) Studio has stated that Like a Dragon: Ishin! will have to become a “huge hit” for a remake of Ryu Ga Gotoku: Kenzan to be in discussion.

The details:

  • RGG Studio announced that a remake of Ryu Ga Gotoku Ishin! is scheduled for a February 21, 2023 release at the Tokyo Game Show back in September.
  • Following the announcement, fans of the franchise (formally known as Yakuza in the west) hoped that the even older spin-off, Kenzan, might receive similar treatment. Unfortunately, executive producer Masayoshi Yokoyama confirmed in an interview with Ungeek that a remake wasn’t even being considered at the time.
  • Although fans might be disappointed by the news, Yokoyama did state that there’s “definitely a desire to recreate” Kenzan, but explained how it would require a “lot of time and a lot of effort to remake”. Following this, he mentioned that Like a Dragon: Ishin! would have to become a “huge hit” for them to start the conversation about a remake.
  • The samurai-era spin-off, Ryu Ga Gotoku: Kenzan, was originally released exclusively in Japan back in 2008 for the PlayStation 3. Due to its age, many of the game’s mechanics are now outdated when it comes to modern gameplay styles — an issue Yokohama brought up during the interview. “The game is based on a battle system [that] is rather incomplete compared to modern day Like a Dragon games, especially with things like the character movements and the action animation.”

What’s happening with Yakuza?

  • Alongside Ishin’s announcement, Sega confirmed to Kotaku that it’s decided to drop the ‘Yakuza’ name for Like a Dragon to “more closely align with the Japanese name.” The series was previously known as Yakuza in the west, with developers Ryu Ga Gotoku Studio sharing the original franchise name, which translates directly to ‘Like a Dragon Studio’.
  • RGG Studio is set to release two spin-off titles in the Like a Dragon series next year: the aforementioned Ishin!, and Like a Dragon Gaiden: The Man Who Erased His Name, which bridges the gap between Yakuza 6 and 2024’s Like a Dragon 8.
  • With three major projects in development at RGG Studio, it’s not too surprising that a remake of Kenzan isn’t on the cards as of yet.