The Yakuza series has gained a lot more popularity in the West in recent years, despite the series having had quite the strong following in Japan for some time now. For those who may not know much about the Yakuza series, it's known for its iconic characters, fast and fluid combat, and juggling both a serious story with fun, wacky side content.
However, the Yakuza series has largely remained the same since it began, aside from the newly released Yakuza: Like a Dragon. Now, it seems that the Yakuza series' creator, Toshihiro Nagoshi, has hinted that the team at Ryu Ga Gotaku is going to continue to branch out by developing new types of games.
The information comes by way of a Game Informer interview, in which Nagoshi gave insights on his life, career, and his involvement with Sega dating all the way back to the '90s. The full interview with Nagoshi is a fascinating read for Yakuza fans as well as those interested in the game development industry in Japan. However, one particular portion of the interview is interesting, where Nagoshi talks about how he thinks the talents of team members at Ryu Ga Gotaku is currently being wasted.
In the interview with Game Informer, Nagoshi says, "The Ryu Ga Gotoku team members, they’ve only really worked on the Yakuza series, but I think it would be a waste if these really talented team members that we have aren’t able to use all of their skills to their full potential." Nagoshi makes a great point, especially when looking at the quality of some of the most recent titles in the Yakuza series. Additionally, considering Yakuza: Like a Dragon was really the team's first foray into an entirely different genre than the main action beat-'em-up style that previous Yakuza titles are known for, Ryu Ga Gotaku did an excellent job developing a traditional JRPG title.
Nagoshi continues that line of thinking, saying, "That might be challenging themselves, creating something of a whole different genre and a different style. We don’t know that yet, but that’s something that we’re really taking into consideration right now for the growth of our team as a whole.” If what Nagoshi says is true, it could be possible that fans see something completely different from the Yakuza team in the coming years, though it does sound like it's not set in stone just yet. Ryu Ga Gotaku branched out slightly with the Yakuza series spin-off title Judgement in 2019, though the game still retained many elements of the main Yakuza series.
Though many would never want the Yakuza series to go away entirely, it could be a nice change of pace to see Ryu Ga Gotaku develop something completely new. Seeing as Yakuza: Like a Dragon turned out to be one of the best JRPGs of 2020, the studio could surely tackle a different genre with great success. Hopefully, fans will see something completely new from the team sometime in the next couple years.
Recently, Yakuza Remastered Collection arrived on Xbox Game Pass, allowing players to experience the life of a Japanese outlaw for themselves. Formerly a PlayStation exclusive, the Yakuza franchise has made itself famous for its unique balance of dramatic storytelling, wacky sense of humor, and challenging, yet extremely amusing mini-games, and Yakuza Remastered Collection delivers all of that.
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