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Ichiban Kasuga (春日 一番, Kasuga Ichiban) is the protagonist of the Yakuza/Like a Dragon series from Yakuza: Like a Dragon onward, as well as the protagonist of The Legend of Ichiban Kasuga: Part 1 in Ryu Ga Gotoku Online. He is a former member of the Arakawa Family, a Tojo Clan subsidiary and a former employee at Hello Work. Due to his heroic exploits, he is also known as the "Hero of Yokohama" (ハマの英雄, Hama no Eiyū).



Described as having been born with "nothing but physical strength," Kasuga has a very muscular build that gives him the opportunity to be proficient at a variety of fighting styles. His eyes are gray and he has medium-length dark hair styled into a massive afro after his release from prison, as well as a beard. Prior to this, his hair was styled into a much shorter punch perm, growing out long enough during his time in prison to be tied into a short ponytail. He wears this ponytail again during his tenure at Hello Work in Like a Dragon: Infinite Wealth, but reverts to the afro in 2023.



Kasuga's dragonfish tattoo

Kasuga's tattoo covers most of his back and ends just above his thighs. It depicts a dragonfish (龍魚, ryūgyo), the in-between state of the koi in the legend of a koi that swims up to the top of a waterfall and is rewarded for its tenacity by being transformed into a dragon. The tattoo represents the strength and perseverance of the koi as it struggles upstream, as well as a greater destiny that lies ahead, as the koi has not fully finished its transformation into a dragon.

Ryu Ga Gotoku Online: Kasuga's inspiration for the tattoo was Jo Sawashiro, whose tattoo depicts the same creature. The two both hold a strong admiration for Masumi Arakawa and view him as the 'dragon' they aspire to be. Only the outlines of the tattoo are filled in up until Chapter 21, but it is seen in its completed state in the rest of the game.

Utabori is the tattoo artist who designed Kasuga's dragonfish, and he incorporated elements from both Kazuma Kiryu and Akira Nishikiyama's tattoos in its design. Utabori did not include his signature in Kasuga's tattoo; it is unknown why.


Kasuga's signature attire consists of a maroon suit worn over a white shirt with an upturned collar and a gold chain necklace. He also wears black leather loafers with gold buckles and a matching black leather belt with a gold buckle. When assigned his unique class, Hero, the way he envisions his attire changes slightly in battle; his sleeves are rolled up to the elbow, he wears black leather gloves, and his necklace is replaced by a red silk ascot. As an employee at Hello Work, he swaps out the maroon suit for a blue suit with a red tie. On his date with Saeko, he has two outfits; a more casual outfit with a beige blazer and white undershirt and pants, and a more formal outfit that consists of a three-piece silver suit with a black dress shirt and a red tie. In Hawaii, he wears a red Hawaiian patterned shirt over a white undershirt and jean shorts along with his gold chain necklace.


Kasuga is a fiercely loyal, passionate, and steadfast man with a strong sense of justice. Kasuga is a huge fan of Dragon Quest, a video game he loved to play ever since his youth. This contributed to his strong sense of imagination where he imagines his battles as if they were a turn-based JRPG. Due to his loves for games, Kasuga dreams of being a "hero" and greatly admires old-school yakuza ideals of honor, bonds, and chivalry. He deeply admires Masumi Arakawa and aspires to be a man like him and live up to his legacy. Kasuga is a humble, easy-going, humorous, and optimistic man who enjoys the simple things and approaches life with a child-like wonderment. While he enjoys fighting, Kasuga never picks fights needlessly or unfairly, admitting that he lets weaker opponents hit him so it won't be one-sided, and balks at killing.

Kasuga wears his heart on his sleeve and is prone to letting his emotions get the best of him, whether it be sheer rage or getting overly excitable. His impulsive nature and tendency not to think things through often lands him in trouble. Mild-mannered and friendly to everyone he meets, Kasuga is a good conversationalist and an attentive listener, providing a comforting presence and giving encouragement and advice. His idealistic naivety, blunt honesty, and lack-of-tact sometimes causes bouts of awkwardness, embarrassment, and insensitivity towards people, but Kasuga always sincerely apologizes for any offense he causes. His exuberant, hot-blooded nature both endeared and annoyed his friends, who usually have to rein him in. Kasuga is noted to have a dangerous temper, getting more violent whenever it flares, but he learned to better control it after fighting with Kazuma Kiryu.

One of Kasuga's notable traits is his unfailing kindness and general love for people. Due to living his entire life as a societal outcast, Kasuga is immensely empathic and non-judgmental to those in similar situations. He is always willing to help out anyone in need and put others before himself. He's compassionate to people at their lowest and shows forgiveness even to those who wronged him because he understands what it's like to struggle alone without any help. As many tend to point out, Kasuga's trusting, good-natured disposition makes it easy for others to take advantage of him. Kasuga understands this and accepts responsibility for his actions, striving to make amends should problems arise. He believes in the best in people and that anyone can atone, saving his hatred for the truly vile and remorseless people. These traits have made him an infectiously charismatic person that never fails to inspire admiration from the people around him. He cares deeply about his party members and leads them with grace, and in turn, they stand by him and are ready to have his back no matter how overwhelming the odds are.

Having spent his entire life at "rock bottom" and considered an "idiot" for his loud, goofy behavior imbued Kasuga with a tough, resilient spirit. Acknowledging his shortcomings and flaws, Kasuga doesn't let insults or negative opinions weight him down, even making self-deprecating remarks and jokes at his own expense. Despite being a high school dropout and his long stint in jail, Kasuga compensates his lack of formal education and ignorance of modern society with street-smarts, sharp intuition, and a natural curiosity to learn new things. Kasuga is also very emotionally intelligent, being good at reading people and predicting their actions. His imagination has also made him a quick thinker and a creative tactician in battles or at problem-solving. He's also extremely knowledgeable of the criminal underworld and cunningly utilizes this, calling out Zheng on his arrogance for using the Yokohama Liumang as an excuse to get away with shaking down the homeless, as well as Yamato Totsuka's fear of the Seiryu chairman. Despite being bad at lying, Kasuga is good with words, showing talent in public speaking and can argue evenly against his opponents.

When the situation calls for it, Kasuga becomes unflinchingly serious, focused, and fearless, unfazed even when weapons aim at him. Once a goal is set in his mind, Kasuga is incredibly stubborn, hard-working, and dutiful, stopping at nothing until he fulfill the promises and trust placed in him. His heroic willpower, tenacious persistence, and brilliance at strategy allows him to prevail over his enemies, who sorely underestimates him. Legendary figures such as Kiryu sees great potential in Kasuga and some even notes the similarities between them. Although he respects Kiryu, Kasuga wants to create his own path instead of following Kiryu's footsteps, which Kiryu sharing this sentiment.


SPOILER WARNING: Plot details for Yakuza: Like a Dragon follow. (Skip)

Kasuga was born to Akane Kishida and Masumi Arakawa on New Year's Day, 1977, in Shangri-La. He was hidden in coin locker #101 at Shinjuku Station by Akane on Arakawa's instructions in order to keep him safe while they were being pursued by members of Hikawa Industries. However, Arakawa unknowingly retrieved the baby locked in the adjacent locker #99. Kasuga was instead taken in by Shangri-La's manager, Jiro Kasuga, and raised by the people of Kamurocho. Although beloved, he lived in poverty and the people who raised him were considered "trash" by the rest of society. To escape this reality, he spent his nights playing Dragon QuestWP in the back office of the soapland and dreaming of being a hero one day. He had apparently been struggling with toilet training until fifth grade. Ichiban believed his mother was a soapland girl who abandoned him, and that his birth father was a client.

Ichiban ylad teen

Teenage Kasuga

The year after the death of his father, he stopped going to junior high school at fifteen and resorted to whatever means necessary to earn money and support himself, leaving his education behind for good. He spent most of his days fighting people for money, regardless of who they were. However, one day, he severely injured and hospitalized a yakuza. The family the yakuza belonged to sought revenge and managed to capture him. They beat Kasuga to the brink of death, and fearing for his life he blurted out the name of a feared yakuza, Masumi Arakawa, saying that if they killed him they'd be hearing from him; in reality, he had never met the man and was only aware of him due to his reputation as "Killer" Arakawa.

Kasuga hoped mentioning his name would somehow get him free, but it only backfired. The family that held him captive were enemies of the Arakawa Family. They summoned Arakawa to their office and asked him to collect Kasuga in person, assuming Kasuga was part of his family. To Kasuga's surprise, Arakawa arrived. The men demanded he takes responsibility for Kasuga's actions. Arakawa offered them his finger in exchange for Kasuga's freedom and the men quickly let Kasuga go.

Kasuga followed Arakawa and tried to thank him, but Arakawa punched him, saying he didn't cut his finger off for his sake. He explained to Kasuga that being a yakuza meant you had a reputation to uphold, and he would have lost face if he simply bowed his head and asked for him back. Kasuga asked him why he would go to such lengths for someone he didn't even know, to which Arakawa responded, "Maybe I just wanted to look cool in front of a kid who knew who I was."

Kasuga decided then and there he'd follow Arakawa for the rest of his life. He waited outside of the Arakawa Family office for one hundred days before Arakawa finally gave in and agreed to swear him into the family at sixteen, against Jo Sawashiro's wishes. His yakuza career was largely unremarkable, earning the nickname "Rock Bottom Ichiban" as he didn't bring in lot of money into the family since Kasuga never unjustly took money from anyone. A mutual antagonism developed between Kasuga and Sawashiro because to this and Sawashiro hit him whenever he fails his assignments. Sometime after his induction to the family, Kasuga was also tasked to care for Arakawa's son, Masato Arakawa. While Masato treats him contemptuously, Kasuga made a promise to Arakawa to always look after Masato and is kind to him. Aside from some downsides, Kasuga was happily content with his life serving the man he admired the most and went on to formed a very close relationship with Arakawa, akin to father and son.


Yakuza: Like a Dragon: 2000-2019

On December 31, 2000, Kasuga is on a collections job for Jo Sawashiro with Mitsuo Yasumura, interacting with his friends on the way. He later takes Masato to the cabaret club he frequents and receives money from him, which he tries to use as payment for his captain, who realizes where the money actually came from. Sawashiro tries to have Kasuga's finger cut off, but Arakawa interrupts them and takes Kasuga out for dinner.

On his 24th birthday, Kasuga is called into the Arakawa Family office, where Arakawa informs him of Sawashiro's involvement in the murder of a member of the Sakaki Family. Arakawa asks Kasuga to shoulder the blame and go to prison on Sawashiro's behalf, and that he is banished from the family. He turns himself in to the police and is sentenced to 15 years in jail, which is extended to 18 years following a fight with inmates in the summer of 2002.

In 2019, now 42, Kasuga is freed from prison with no one from his old days waiting for him. He meets Koichi Adachi, who did his research on Kasuga, but he is not interested in partnering with the detective. While visiting a graveyard, he sees his former patriarch and is ignored by him, learning from Adachi that the Arakawa Family has sided with the Omi Alliance, who forced the Tojo Clan out of Kamurocho.

Kasuga arrives in Kamurocho and is shocked by how much society changed during his prison term. Adachi joins him, and explains his reasoning for wanting to be with him, then hands him a smartphone, which he learns how to operate with assistance from Nick Ogata. They sneak through the sewers and rooftops to where Arakawa is. On the way, a helicopter spots them on a rooftop and Adachi stays behind. Kasuga faces Sawashiro upon arrival and defeats him, then opens the door to a dinner between Omi officers, looking for answers, but is shot in the chest by Arakawa.

Kasuga wakes up under a pile of garbage in Isezaki Ijincho, having been patched up by Yu Nanba. Nanba joins Kasuga after Yokohama Liumang member Zheng demands payment from the homeless, and the two drive him off. Nanba explains the situation with the Ijin Three and shows Kasuga the severity of his bullet wound, which leads to him discovering a defective counterfeit 10,000 yen bill.

Through Shuichi Kanbe, the duo find jobs. They meet Hamako and Bleach Japan after a bodyguard job, and Adachi rejoins them afterward. The three are directed to Otohime Land to work for Isao Nonomiya, and rescue Nanoha Mukoda from having to pay large fees to Sunlight Castle, and meet Ryuhei Hoshino, who recognizes the bill. After their job is done, however, Nonomiya dies apparently from suicide.

Through Saeko Mukoda, they learn one of the Liumang's bosses Akira Mabuchi may be involved. She joins the trio after tearfully asking for their help, and they eventually learn they might meet him at the Yokohama Trading Company. They attempt to expose the company's counterfeiting scheme, but their plan goes awry and they are captured and framed by Mabuchi. A masked Joongi Han frees them and they rush to Chinatown to stop a war between the Liumang and the Seiryu Clan. There, they meet the Liumang leader Tianyou Zhao and convince both him and Mamoru Takabe to stand down temporarily.

They head to Geomijul at Zhao's demand, and are led there by an incognito Seonhee. They get what Zhao wanted, but an established conflict between the Geomijul and Nanba causes him to leave and Han to fight the others. They later meet the heads of the Ijin Three at Heian Tower and learn about the scheme they set up with Yutaka Ogikubo, but for information on Kasuga's fake bill, he is asked to retrieve Nanba. Initially hesitant, he accepts after learning the Liumang had sent assassins after Nanba. They find Nanba collaborating with Mabuchi, Bleach Japan, and Hajime Ogasawara. After defeating them, Kasuga discovers that Ryo Aoki is actually the supposedly-dead Masato Arakawa.

In the ensuing chaos, Kasuga is called by Han and Seonhee. He and his friends are asked to hold the invading Omi Alliance at bay until they can burn down their operation. Afterwards, he interrogates Ogasawara to learn of Aoki's ambitions and plans to use the Omi. They learn Zhao may be in trouble, and Han joins the party to rescue him from Mabuchi and the Omi, where Nanba rejoins them. Afterwards, Zhao directs Kasuga to meet with Mitsuo, who is keeping a low profile. He tells Kasuga that Arakawa will need allies shortly.

The Chief and Hoshino tell Kasuga of their history with Arakawa, and he learns Arakawa had sent him there intentionally to save him, renewing his faith in his former patriarch. Zhao joins Kasuga's party, and they decide to meet with Aoki for answers. He learns Aoki had endorsed Sota Kume for an election. Meeting Aoki in person, he learns of his recovery in the US, that he is intending to purge Ijincho of its residents reliant on gray zones, and that the murder Kasuga had taken the fall for was not caused by Sawashiro but by Aoki himself.

Kasuga decides to head to Sotenbori after becoming restless waiting for an update from Mitsuo. Sneaking into the Omi Alliance Headquarters to meet Arakawa, he and his party are met upon by Goro Majima and Taiga Saejima. Before their fight escalates, Arakawa and Daigo Dojima explain that Arakawa's betrayal was planned by them and Masaru Watase in order to split the Omi forces between Tokyo and Osaka to make their plan of disbanding the Tojo and Omi easier to accomplish. When the dissolution is announced, they join Arakawa in defending Dojima and Watase alongside Yosuke Tendo, who had decided to fight for them, and Watase's mysterious bodyguard.

Arakawa and Kasuga catch up after returning to Yokohama, but the next day, he learns Arakawa was killed. Hoshino is able to get him to cheer up and suggests he run in the upcoming election to get close to Aoki. During the campaign, he learns Hoshino is being targeted by Sawashiro, but arrives too late to save him, and learn from Sawashiro that Aoki is his son and Kasuga is Arakawa's. With the rough events, Kasuga starts to lose himself, but an exchange of blows with Kazuma Kiryu gets him back to his senses. Learning from Reiji Ishioda that Tendo murdered Arakawa, the group goes into hiding with Nick and heads to Kamurocho.

Kasuga bluffs to Aoki of having incriminating evidence to lure him and Tendo to the Millennium Tower. Kasuga defeats Tendo, and engineers a confession with the help of Mirror Face to end Aoki's political career. Kasuga pleads to Aoki to start anew, but he is killed by Kume before he can do so. At the Arakawas' funeral, Kasuga turns down an invitation into a security firm by the ex-Tojo and Omi officers to stay with his newfound treasured friends in Ijincho, and reflects on Aoki's last words to him.


Like a Dragon: Infinite Wealth: 2022-2023

MAJIMA CONSTRUCTION IS AT WORK! This section is under construction.

Three years after the Great Dissolution of the Tojo Clan and the Omi Alliance, Kasuga, now a Hello Work employee, helps ex-yakuza find legitimate jobs to turn their lives around. He sees this as his way to fulfill Arakawa's dream.

Kasuga asks Saeko out on a date, and she agrees. He spends the whole day making preparations with Nanba and Adachi, and although the date mostly goes well, in the end he suddenly proposes to her, and Saeko thanks him for the day and leaves. Kasuga thinks she might be mad at him, but once they meet again she simply says she would like to remain friends.

By 2023, Saeko has completely ghosted Kasuga, not having answered a single message from him since last year. He is then fired from his job at Hello Work when the Tatara Channel, a famous Vtuber channel, accuses him of trying to start his own criminal organization with the ex-yakuza he helps. The exposé also affects Nanba and Adachi's reputations, which Kasuga feels extremely guilty about. The three go on another adventure to find out why the Seiryu Clan has been recruiting so many ex-yakuza recently, and invade their headquarters. They meet Acting Chairman Masataka Ebina, who reveals to them that the ex-yakuza are actually given legitimate jobs in their waste management business, and that he's planning on a Second Great Dissolution that will end the yakuza as a whole. Ebina also reveals that he's counting with the aid of Sawashiro, who was found not guilty of killing Hoshino and freed from his life sentence. He asks Kasuga to meet him at Heian Tower the next day.

In Heian Tower, Sawashiro reveals to Kasuga that Arakawa's lover and his mother, Akane Kishida, is still alive in Hawaii, and begs him to visit her. Once he arrives there, Kasuga becomes friends with a wheelchair user named Eiji Mitamura. Outside the airport, he picks the taxi driver Eric Tomizawa who speaks Japanese, and gives him Sawashiro's postcard with Akane's address. He tries to rob Kasuga, they fight, and out of spite Tomizawa eats the postcard and runs to the police, accusing Kasuga of trying to mug him. Fortunately, Eiji was nearby and recorded the whole thing. Eiji offers to discover the address through the recording, and they head to his hotel. They are attacked by Yutaka Yamai and the Yamai Syndicate, the yakuza organization Tomizawa works for, but manage to run away with the full address.

Arriving at his mother's home, Kasuga meets Chitose Fujinomiya, supposedly Akane's maid, who tells him she's been gone for a few days. She then drugs him, robs all of his possessions, and leaves him naked in Honolulu's Aloha Beach. Kasuga is then arrested for indecent exposure, and is almost accused of another crime by a corrupt police officer. Kasuga runs away from the police station, only to be rescued by Kiryu, who was sent to Hawaii by the Daidoji Faction to look for Akane for unknown reasons. Kiryu and Kasuga return to Akane's home, and reunite with Yamai, who was looking for Akane himself. Kasuga convinces Tomizawa to join their side, and the three run away before having a fight with Yamai.

They decide to stay in Kiryu's hotel for the night. Tomizawa suggests that Chitose might have sold Kasuga's passport to Jeff, a passport counterfeiter. While Kiryu wants answers as soon as possible, going outside this time of night is ill-advised, as the Barracudas, the biggest mafia group in Honolulu, are taking their weekly stroll through the city. They watch a pickpocket who previously tried to rob Kiryu be brutally murdered after trying to rob one of the gangsters. The next day, the trio goes to meet Jeff only to find out that Chitose didn't sell Kasuga's passport, but rather only asked him if she could enter District Five, the Barracudas' headquarters. Kasuga and co. decide to meet corrupt officer Roman Reynolds, the only person capable of getting them inside. After a battle, Roman agrees.

Other Media

Wanderings of the Golden Dragon: 1999

Main article: Ryu Ga Gotoku Online#Wanderings of the Golden Dragon

In winter 1999, six years after joining the Arakawa Family, Kasuga is tasked to accompany Daisaku Kuze, who was recently released from prison, on a mission to assassinate Ryuji Goda and Joongi Han.

The duo eventually encounters their targets in Nagasugai, Fukuoka. Their fight is soon interrupted by a group of thugs led by Wataru Takayama, the acting chairman of the Go-Ryu Clan, who has been chasing Ryuji for a while. Knowing that they couldn't face so many enemies at once Ryuji and Han decide to split up. Kuze and the Go-Ryu follow Ryuji, while Kasuga chases after Han.

After vowing to make Kasuga pay for all the pain the Tojo Clan has inflicted to the Jingweon, Han and Kasuga start fighting. Suddenly, a member of the Go-Ryu Clan appears, giving Han a chance to escape.

Streets of Kamurocho

Kasuga appears as a hidden character in the short beat-em-up title inspired by the story of the original Yakuza and the gameplay of SEGA's Streets of Rage franchise. His moveset, much like that of Kiryu and Majima, is a reskinned version of the Streets of Rage series' main character, Axel. He can be unlocked after completing the single stage once.

Fighting Style

Kasuga's fighting style is based around street fighting and professional wrestling techniques that, while lacking in finesse, are powerful and adaptive to his immediate environment. He also makes use of a baseball bat in an extremely professional manner. He imagines his fights as turn based, as he explains to Mitsuo. After getting the Hero's Bat in both games, he sees enemies frequently transform, usually with red eyes. However main story bosses remain normal.

Yakuza: Like a Dragon

Kasuga has two character-specific jobs:

  • Freelancer, a high-offense unarmed fighting style which allows Kasuga to utilize both his impressive physical prowess and objects from around the environment. A very basic job, with not many downsides but not many benefits either.
  • Hero, in which Kasuga uses a baseball bat as a weapon, wielding it like a hero's sword. The Hero job transforms Kasuga into an all-rounder, gaining him access to a wide-array of support, recovery and offensive abilities.

Also in Kasuga's arsenal is the Poundmates system, which allows him to summon various characters Kasuga and his team have befriended to give the party various buffs, and attack/de-buff enemies during battle.

In the final boss fight of Yakuza: Like a Dragon, Freelancer will be forcibly equipped as if it was Job Level 99, temporarily unlocking all skills and granting extra stats. Character skills unlocked from other jobs will still be usable.


(フリーター, Furītaa)
Freelancer Job Icon
Ichiban Kasuga exclusive job. Relies on bare-knuckle brawling and Kasuga's pro wrestling moves to knock enemies senseless. A high-offense job that allows Kasuga to learn terrain-based Skills.
Requirements Ichiban Kasuga Yu Nanba Koichi Adachi Saeko Mukoda
Lv. 1+
Joongi Han Tianyou Zhao Eri Kamataki
Characteristics Weapon Element Elemental Bonus Stat Bonus Criticality Rate Accessories
Bare-Handed Blunt Attack, Agility 2% Dragonfish Tenugui
Statistics Rank HP MP Attack Defense Magic Healing Agility Dexterity
10 120 105 33 36 21 37 55 50
20 200 186 62 68 41 68 83 78
30 280 267 90 100 60 98 110 105
See Freelancer for a full overview of this job's statistics.
Freelancer Skill Progression
Rank Skill Name MP Target Type Element Effect Power Category
Treasure Hunt Exploration
Search for hidden treasures scattered throughout the city.
Try pressing [Interact] any time you find something shiny on the ground.
2 Tenacious Fist 8 1 Enemy Attack Blunt Stun Light (1.3×) Job
Kasuga puts all his energy into a single punch that may leave the enemy stunned.
4 Rock Swing 10 1 Enemy Attack Blunt Light (1.4×) Job
Damage an enemy by putting them in a headlock and throwing them.
5 Headbutt Barrage 13 1 Enemy Attack Blunt Light (1.6×) Job
Damage an enemy with an onslaught of headbutts.
8 Hyper Swagger 10 Self Support Character
Kasuga hypes himself up and attunes to the flow of battle, boosting his Evasion and Attack for 2 turns.
12 Dropkick 21 1 Enemy Attack Blunt Medium (1.8×) Job
Damage an enemy with a flying kick. High chance to land a critical hit.
16 Ruffian's Kick 28 1 Enemy Attack Blunt Medium (2.0×) Job
Damage an enemy with a swift, brutal kick.
20 Atomic Drop 43 1 Enemy Attack Blunt Heavy (2.4×) Job
Damage an enemy by hitting them hard in their vital spot. High chance to land a critical hit.
24 Release German Suplex 50 1 Enemy Attack Blunt Extreme (2.7×) Character
Damage an enemy with a wrestling technique known as a release German suplex. May instantly knock out the enemy.
28 Essence of Roadside Weapon 65 1 Enemy Attack Blunt Extreme (2.8×) Job
A powerful skill that damages an enemy with an improvised weapon lying about the city.
Changes depending on the surrounding area.
See Freelancer#Skills for a full overview of this job's skills.
Rank Skill Name MP Target Type Attribute Effect Power Category


Hero Skills
Color Rank Skill Name Description Cost
Green 1 Bat Buster Damage an enemy with a powerful swing of your bat. (Blunt) 6 MP
Green 1 Mega Swing Damage an enemy as well as those in the surrounding vicinity with a large bat swing. The lower Kasuga's remaining HP is, the greater the damage becomes. (Blunt) 26 MP
Yellow 2 HP +10 Permanently boosts HP by 10.
Green 4 Fearless Command Boost all allies' Attack by exuding a heroic battle aura. This skill becomes more effective as Kasuga's Passion increases. (Support) 28 MP
Green 6 Bat Breaker Heavily damage an enemy with a powerful swing of your bat. (Blunt) 21 MP
Green 8 Hero's Vigor Make a valiant effort to revive a fallen ally. (Recovery) 20 MP
Yellow 9 Defense +5 Permanently boosts Defense by 5.
Green 10 Hero's Compassion Emanate a warm, compassionate aura, restoring HP to all allies. This skill becomes more effective as Kasuga's Kindness increases. (Recovery) 40 MP
Green 12 Giga Swing Heavily damage an enemy as well as those in the surrounding vicinity with a large bat swing. The lower Kasuga's remaining HP is, the greater the damage becomes. (Blunt) 45 MP
Yellow 14 HP +10 Permanently boosts HP by 10.
Red 16 *Peerless Resolve Kasuga's tenacity recovers HP and allows him to survive a hit that would otherwise knock him out. (Support) 13 MP
Red 18 *Indomitable Courage Removes all allies' status ailments by demonstrating heroic perseverance. The success rate improves as Kasuga's Charisma increases. (Recovery) 45 MP
Yellow 20 Defense +5 Permanently boosts Defense by 5.
Green 22 Essence of Bonecrushing Bat A powerful skill that deals extreme damage to an enemy using a bat's bludgeoning force. (Blunt) 50 MP
Green 24 Hero's Embrace Emanate an aura of genuine love, restoring all allies' HP. (Recovery) 60 MP
Yellow 26 HP +20 Permanently boosts HP by 20.
Green 28 Essence of Full Swing Damage an enemy as well as those in the surrounding vicinity with a large bat swing. The lower Kasuga's remaining HP is, the greater the damage becomes. 65 MP
Yellow 30 Defense +5 Permanently boosts Defense by 5.
Yellow 35 HP +10 Permanently boosts HP by 10.
Yellow 40 Defense +5 Permanently boosts Defense by 5.
Yellow 45 HP +10 Permanently boosts HP by 10.
Yellow 50 Defense +5 Permanently boosts Defense by 5.
Yellow 55 HP +10 Permanently boosts HP by 10.
Yellow 60 Defense +5 Permanently boosts Defense by 5.
Yellow 65 HP +10 Permanently boosts HP by 10.
Yellow 70 Defense +5 Permanently boosts Defense by 5.
Yellow 75 HP +20 Permanently boosts HP by 20.
Yellow 80 Defense +5 Permanently boosts Defense by 5.
Yellow 85 HP +20 Permanently boosts HP by 20.
Yellow 90 Defense +5 Permanently boosts Defense by 5.
Yellow 95 HP +20 Permanently boosts HP by 20.
Yellow 99 Defense +5 Permanently boosts Defense by 5.


  • Kasuga was given the name "Ichiban" (一番, lit. "number one" in the context of being the best) by executive director Toshihiro Nagoshi and lead writer Masayoshi Yokoyama. They decided on the name due to its contrast with his background and lifestyle being emblematic of Kasuga as a character, who "[lives life] to the fullest like he doesn't see the irony."[3]
  • In Like a Dragon: Ishin!, Kasuga appears as a Shinsengumi Trooper Card rather than as one of the division captains specifically because his character and beliefs would not fit with how the captains are portrayed.[4]
  • Humorously, despite his love for his pet crawfish Nancy, Kasuga’s favorite food is lobster, as revealed by Saeko in Infinite Wealth.


  1. The given height of 185 cm (6′ 1″) is based on the character model's scaling factor within Yakuza: Like a Dragon's data.[2] For Dragon Engine games, this method is believed to be very accurate (±2 cm). However, this is intended as an estimate, not a substitute for an official statistic.


  1. Ryu Ga Gotoku Studio, “Chapter 1: Light and Shadow”, Yakuza: Like a Dragon (2020; Tokyo: SEGAWP, 2020), PlayStation 4/PlayStation 5/Xbox One/Xbox Series X and S/Windows/Amazon Luna.
    23 years ago, on January 1st, I came screaming into this sleazy soapland.
    — Kasuga to himself, December 31, 2000 (Japanese audio, English subtitles), Yakuza: Like a Dragon
  2. Ryu Ga Gotoku Studio, “character_model_model_data” (.BIN file), Yakuza: Like a Dragon (2020; Tokyo: SEGAWP, 2020), PlayStation 4/PlayStation 5/Xbox One/Xbox Series X and S/Windows/Amazon Luna.
  3. “"Shin Ryū ga Gotoku" no makuake to naru sumaho apuri 「Ryū Ga Gotoku ONLINE」 no jittai wo chokugeki! [Dengeki PS]” “新・龍が如く”の幕開けとなるスマホアプリ『龍が如く ONLINE』の実態を直撃!【電撃PS】 ["Getting Straight to the Facts on the Mobile App That's Raising the Curtain for "Shin Ryu Ga Gotoku," Ryu Ga Gotoku Online! [Dengeki PS]"] November 1, 2018, https://dengekionline.com/elem/000/001/821/1821030/. (Archive)
    We were still figuring the new protagonist out when Nagoshi said, "I want to burden this man with the name 'Ichiban.'" So then I decided on Ichiban Kasuga. The "ultimate example of not living up to your name," who'd get the ass-end of life despite the name Ichiban and live it to the fullest like he doesn't see the irony—that's the thinking behind it.
    — Masayoshi Yokoyama, "Getting Straight to the Facts on the Mobile App That's Raising the Curtain for "Shin Ryu Ga Gotoku," Ryu Ga Gotoku Online! [Dengeki PS]"
  4. Meg Pelliccio, “Like A Dragon: Ishin Interview - Hiroyuki Sakamoto Discusses Bringing Ishin West” TheGamer, January 27, 2023, https://www.thegamer.com/like-a-dragon-ishin-interview-hiroyuki-sakamoto/.