When the RGG Summit Summer 2023 was revealed, one would expect new trailers for Like a Dragon Gaiden: The Man who Erased his Name and Like a Dragon 8 (now Infinite Wealth) would debut there. However when trailers debuted on the Summer Game Fest and the Xbox Showcase respectively, we were left with…what else are they going to talk about?
Well the time has come and on a rather sterile stage strewn with stools. Masayoshi Yokoyama took to the stage. The executive producer of RGG studios had a couple of words before showing the Like a Dragon Gaiden: The Man who Erased his Name trailer that debuted last week. A discussion of the fighting styles that Kiryu will be utilizing in this side story. Yakuza style represents an amalgamation of the style he used in previous games, Agent style doesn’t look any less powerful but it features gadgetry that include wrist grapple gun that can pull and fling objects/people, the ability to call forth drones to swarm your opposition and the crescendo of the the trailer shows Kiryu lighting up and tossing an explosive cigarette which scatters the oncoming horde of foes. As seen in RGG’s most recent title Lost Judgment, the number of thugs you can face per encounter has skyrocketed, hitting double digits in certain situations. I’m sure this will be quite a chore in higher difficulties, but I’m sure once I’m putting fists to faces, I’ll enjoy taking on all comers.
After the styles were detailed, Yokoyama welcomed a selection of actors who lended their voices and appearance to the title. The panel included Takaya Kuroda (Kazuma Kiryu), Yasukaze Motomiya (Kosei Shishido), Yoshiyuki Yamaguchi (Yuki Tsuruno) and First Summer Uika (Akame). The discussion focused on how these actors got involved with the project, their thoughts on the franchise and how working on this title was different from previous roles they’ve had. My biggest takeaways were really how much reverence this franchise has in Japan, with one of the actors actually contemplating not taking the role for fear of not living up to the quality of the past performances, also Uika’s recent introduction to the franchise and it enveloping her to the point of obsession brought a smile to my face. The game’s segment closed with a pre-taped message from Kim Jaeuck (Homare Nishitani III). The biggest revelation from the message is the Mr. Kim’s character name…which fans of Yakuza 0 will certainly be familiar with
The next segment involved Like a Dragon: Infinite Wealth, the main line title that pivoted gameplay style in the last title. Joining Yokoyama and Kuroda on stage would be Kazuhro Nakaya (Ichiban Kasuga) and we were shown the trailer that left little to imagination. Laughs were had and Yokoyama jokingly denied the clip was inspired by a japanese comedian. There’s a bit of discussion by the trio, but the most revealing bit was the in-game clip shown which had Ichiban having a heart to heart with the differently coiffed Kiryu. This short snippet provided wild revelations such as Ichiban still needs Kiryu’s help regarding the dissolution of the clans, Ichiban is/was in a romantic relationship with Saeko, and Kiryu revealing that he’s had more than his fair share of relationships.
While not action packed it certainly provided the fanbase plenty to speculate (I’m thinking we might get a mention or maybe an appearance from Kaoru Sayama). As the summit winded down. I’m certainly chomping at the bit to get my hands on Gaiden, which will be releasing November 9th and Infinite Wealth which is scheduled for an early 2024 release. However we won’t have to wait too long for more details as the RGG Summit will return in Fall 2023 (around September) and it will definitely cover those two titles with a heavier focus on Infinite Wealth. Here’s hoping we’ll also get some news on some remakes (Yakuza of the Dead), Localization efforts (Like a Dragon Online) and of those perhaps some glimmer of hope from the studio’s other tentpole title Judgment.
RGG Summit Summer 2023:
RGG Summit Summer 2023. A panel featuring character introductions and more details on Like a Dragon Gaiden: The Man Who Erased His Name and Like a Dragon: Infinite Wealth at the RGG Summit!