As soon as RGG Studio officially announced Like a Dragon: Ishin!, Like a Dragon: The Man Who Erased His Name, and Like a Dragon 8, we knew that ‘Yakuza’ was no more. Like a Dragon is replacing the Western name of SEGA’s long running series, and honestly, the change doesn’t come as a huge surprise — even if its implementation has been a bit sloppy.
Speaking to IGN, producer Masayoshi Yokoyama confirms what we’ve all been thinking: the franchise has simply moved away from being about yakuza. “Story-wise too, we are talking about criminal underworld, but we’re not talking about Yakuza, really,” Yokoyama explains. “So it just makes sense for us not to include them in the name. If we carry through the accent, we’d be Yakuza: Ishin! It’s not Yakuza: Ishin! That’s not what it’s about. So Like A Dragon: Ishin! makes more sense.”
As we wrote in our previous report though, calling these games ‘Like a Dragon’ is going to take some getting used to. We’ve been writing about ‘Yakuza’ for well over a decade at this point, and it already feels weird!