Masumi Arakawa (荒川 真澄, Arakawa Masumi), also known by his stage name Taro Arayoshi (荒良 太郎, Arayoshi Tarō), is a supporting character in Yakuza: Like a Dragon and Wanderings of the Golden Dragon in Ryu ga Gotoku Online. He is an antagonist in The Legend of Ichiban Kasuga in Ryu ga Gotoku Online.
In Yakuza: Like a Dragon, he is the first patriarch of the Arakawa Family and the acting captain of the Omi Alliance. In Ryu ga Gotoku Online, he is the patriarch of the Arakawa Family and the captain of the Omi Alliance.
His long history as a hitman and his reputation as the militant leader of the Arakawa Family earned him the nickname "Arakawa the Assassin" (殺しの荒川, Koroshi no Arakawa).
- Yakuza: Like a Dragon: Masumi's face is modeled after his voice actor, Kiichi Nakai. He appears to have a relatively slim build. In his younger years, he has somewhat androgynous features allowing him to perform in female roles with ease. He also wears his short black hair parted to the right.
- After he joins the yakuza, he slicks part of his hair back in a more clean-cut style. His eyes are dark brown and described as having the "hard, flinty gaze of an old killer" by the age of twenty. He has a scar on the right side of his face he received from his mother in childhood, which is shallow enough to cover with makeup. Part of his little finger on his left hand is missing.
- He has a faint mustache in his twenties but is clean-shaven through his thirties and forties. By his most recent appearance in 2019 he has a neatly-trimmed goatee. As the years progress, his hair is also graying.
- Ryu ga Gotoku Online: Masumi has a solid build. His features are typically obscured by his fedora or by shadow, but he appears to have short black hair and brown eyes. He is clean shaven in his younger years but has a small goatee on his chin by his most recent appearance in 2018. Part of his little finger on his left hand is missing.
- Yakuza: Like a Dragon: In his younger days, Masumi wears a black double breasted leather trench coat over a gray snakeskin patterned dress shirt, black slacks, a pair of dark red leather oxfords, a black leather belt with a gold buckle, a pair of black leather gloves, and a black fedora hat. In 2019, his attire changes a bit, with the hat now gone, his shoes now brown instead of dark red, and his trench coat now complemented with a suit jacket and a vest. In 1971, when he is not wearing his Onnagata outfit, he wears a white dress shirt with the top button unbuttoned, khaki pants, a black leather belt with a silver buckle, and white Velcro sneakers.
As a yakuza patriarch, Masumi appears as a considerate person towards his underlings, especially Ichiban, whom he treats just like an actual son and able to persuade Ichiban to work better with Sawashiro during his tenure.
Masumi was born in 1957 to Yoko Arakawa and Toshio Arakawa. Although he had a loving father, Masumi had a troubled home life as a child, and received the scar on his face at the hands of his mother at a young age. Born and raised in a popular theater troupe called Araboshi-za, Masumi surpassed Toshio as a top-billing actor in the taishū engeki genre by the age of fourteen and was celebrated for his female roles as an onnagata. Due to how often the troupe moved from place to place, Masumi never developed friendships in school.
In 1971, after the troupe's final show of the season in Isezaki Ijincho, Yokohama, Toshio planned to treat Masumi to Peking duck at a Chinese restaurant called Heian Tower. However, that night at the restaurant, Toshio was murdered by a hitman sent by the Seiryu Clan. The incident had a profound effect on Masumi, who spent the next seven years searching for the killer.
With the troupe disbanded after Toshio's death, Masumi drifted to Kamurocho along with some fellow troupe members. He ended up joining the yakuza at the age of seventeen under the Hikawa Family, a Tojo Clan subsidiary. The Hikawa Family regularly killed people without hesitation, which Masumi took advantage of, disposing of the bodies in Ijincho's Homeless Quarter in order to spend as much time in Yokohama as possible and track down the culprit behind his father's murder, with no leads except for the memory of the killer's face. As part of Hikawa Family, Masumi came to be a hardened killer.
The patriarch of Hikawa Family eventually arranged a relationship between his daughter and Masumi. This soon fizzled out due to a mutual lack of interest, and Masumi began seeing a woman named Akane in secret. In 1976, Masumi decided to settle down with Akane after she told him she was pregnant, but could not think of a way to bring up the subject to his patriarch. He only made his relationship and the pregnancy known to his patriarch the day Akane was due; however, having lost face, his patriarch had his men beat him badly and ordered them to kill both Akane and the baby.
Masumi escaped and told Akane to meet him at Cafe Alps after she had given birth. Several hours later, he received a phone call from Akane, who told him that Hikawa Family yakuza were closing in, prompting her to run away with the newborn baby to Shinjuku Station. He told her to hide the baby in a coin locker and to get to a safer location as soon as possible to ensure their safety. However, unbeknownst to him, she hid the baby in locker number 0101, adjacent to locker 0099 where Jo Sawashiro and his girlfriend at the time had abandoned their newborn.
After retrieving the baby from locker 0099, he rushed him to the hospital, where the baby was diagnosed with hypothermia-induced multiple organ failure. He later learned that Akane was caught by the yakuza and murdered while he was on his way to the hospital. He left Kamurocho for several days following the incident. Upon his return to Kamurocho, he crushed the Hikawa Family completely as vengeance. Unaware that he was not the baby's biological father, he raised him as his own. He gave him the name Masato; 真 (masa), the first kanji in Masumi and 斗 (to), the first kanji in Toshio.
By 1980, he managed to track down his father's killer: Ryuhei Hoshino. He invited Hoshino to Ijincho's Heian Tower where he interrogated him at gunpoint regarding his motives. Hoshino told him everything regarding the counterfeit operation in Yokohama and that Toshio had been smuggling bills on behalf of the organizations involved. However, one hundred million yen in counterfeit bills turned up missing while in Toshio's possession, prompting the Seiryu Clan to eliminate him; in reality, the money had been stolen by Yoko and the man she was having an affair with at the time, his former co-star Tora. Once he learned the truth, Masumi spared Hoshino's life and left quietly.
Between 1978 and 1982, he established the Arakawa Family, a third-tier organization within the Tojo Clan's ranks. The family gained notoriety due to its militant nature and became feared among the residents of Kamurocho, with Masumi himself earning the nickname "Arakawa the Assassin." Although he appeared to have assistance from his men, raising Masato proved difficult. He was unequipped to handle Masato's dejection and resentment surrounding his disability, and even as a toddler, Masato was prone to tantrums he never had the heart to resist. After he met and swore Jo Sawashiro into the family in 1982, he came to consider him someone he could place his complete trust in and made him his captain, treasurer, and right-hand man. The two seemingly developed a mutual sense of responsibility for Masato's care although Sawashiro never admitted he was Masato's biological father.
In 1984, the year the design of the ten thousand yen bill changed, he was gifted a defective counterfeit by Hoshino. It had the words "Neither justice nor mercy should tip the scale." inscribed on the otherwise blank backside, meaning those in power must reward and punish where necessary. It represented the leverage Masumi had over the Ijin Three, as he had the ability to make the counterfeiting operation public knowledge. Masumi held onto the bill from that point onward.
One day, in 1993, he was called to the offices of the Shinomiya Family to take responsibility for Ichiban Kasuga, a sixteen-year-old boy who had hospitalized one of their members and was claiming to be from the Arakawa Family. Although he had never met Kasuga before, in order to maintain his reputation, he agreed to the rival family's demands. He readily followed through with performing yubitsume in exchange for Kasuga's return. When asked why he would go to those lengths in the first place, he simply stated that he "felt like impressing an idiot kid who knew [his] name." Having left a strong impression on Kasuga, he was followed back to the Arakawa Family office, where Kasuga waited outside every day for one hundred days straight until Masumi finally relented and accepted him into the Arakawa Family. He eventually grew to view Ichiban as his son and entrusted him with looking after Masato. The dynamic within the family was tense, however, with Sawashiro's constant abuse of Kasuga often placing Masumi into the role of mediator.
Masumi earned the resentment of the patriarch of the Sakaki Family, Sakaki, when he interrogated Sakaki on the fact the Sakaki Family was selling Tojo Clan information to the Omi Alliance at a meeting in front of Tojo executives. He was forced to deal with the matter peacefully, as Sakaki was a direct patriarch above him in rank and feigned innocence in front of the executives. Despite his efforts, this only fanned the flames of the existing rivalry between the Arakawa Family and the Sakaki Family.
Yakuza: Like a Dragon: 2000-2019
On New Year's Eve in 2000, Masumi Arakawa is in his office, calling for Ichiban Kasuga, but Jo Sawashiro lets him know he is out on collections. When Kasuga returns, Masumi prevents Sawashiro from cutting off his finger, instead taking Kasuga to his office and discussing his role in the Family before taking him out to have Peking duck. While walking, he talks about the day of Masato's birth and tells Kasuga he sees him as a son, too. They pass by Shangri-La and settle for oden at a stall after not being able to find a restaurant serving Peking duck, where Kasuga recollects their meeting and his reason for joining. After Kasuga saves a woman from harassers, the two part ways.
The next day, Masumi calls Kasuga into his office, gravely telling him to be inconspicuous. The previous night, Masato had killed a man from the rival Sakaki Family. Due to existing tensions with the Sakaki as well as the fact that they are a higher rank, Masumi would need to make amends. He asks Kasuga to turn himself in, telling him the lie that it was Sawashiro who committed the murder. Kasuga eagerly complies, having waited for the day he could repay his debt to Masumi.
Some time after, Masato had faked his death and started a new identity as Ryo Aoki. In 2016, the year Kasuga was going to be released were it not for his sentence extension, Masumi wrote a letter to him expressing how much he misses him.
In 2017, the newly-elected Aoki pressured the Arakawa Family into leaking Tojo Clan intel in order to dismantle it using the Kamurocho 3K Plan, threatening to use the anti-yakuza laws to arrest him if he did not comply. Sawashiro suggested leaking information in exchange for the Family's continued survival. Feeling that Aoki would simply approach another family if he refused, Masumi approached the sixth chairman Daigo Dojima with the plan, who approved it as both he and Omi Alliance captain Masaru Watase were planning to disband the Tojo and the Omi, and the Kamurocho 3K plan succeeding would work towards that goal. In order to complete this plan, Masumi needed to feign turning over to the Omi. He would pass the information to Aoki, who would use it to drive the Tojo Clan from Kamurocho and allow the Omi Alliance to take over uncontested with the police letting them do as they pleased, as commissioner Juro Horinouchi was bribed into allowing it to happen. This would split the Omi's forces in half, which would be instrumental at the time of both organizations' dissolution. Along with Dojima and Watase, he planned to start up a security company in Sotenbori to serve as a home for the yakuza who would have nowhere else to go after the dissolution.
The betrayal would cause Tojo remnants to attack Masumi every once in a while, but he survived and climbed the ranks. By Kasuga's release in 2019, Masumi had been appointed the acting captain of the Omi Alliance and continued to cooperate with Aoki. During a visit to the former Omi chairman's grave, Kasuga sees and calls out to him, but he feigns ignorance to avoid blowing his cover. Later that day, he attends a meeting with the other Omi Alliance patriarchs when Kasuga barges into the room. Masumi shoots Kasuga non-lethally and has him taken to Isezaki Ijincho, a location out of the Omi's reach. Kasuga's unconscious body is placed in a homeless camp whose chief has a pact with the Arakawa Family and Masumi had secretly placed one of Ryuhei Hoshino's defective counterfeit bills in his suit's chest pocket as a message to Hoshino. Before shooting him, he told Kasuga that he is counting on him.
At Omi Alliance headquarters, Masumi interrupts Goro Majima and Taiga Saejima's fight against Kasuga and his party and introduces the latter to Dojima. They head to the Dragon Chamber, where they explain their plan to their guests. Masumi had been gathering allies for the day, and reminded Kasuga he needed him. The next day, Watase and Dojima declare the dissolution of both of their organizations and are met with resistance from the Omi officers. Thanks to the split, there is not enough manpower to crush them and Yosuke Tendo joins Masumi's side as he could not resist the urge to fight such a brawl. Masumi, Tendo, Watase's mysterious bodyguard, and Kasuga and his party fight the opposition and win, allowing the dissolution to succeed. Following the fight, he thanks Kasuga for his help and tells him he has good companions before expressing relief at his safety.
Some time following the events, Masumi and Kasuga meet at the docks in Yokohama at night and spend some time together. Masumi talks about his concerns with Masato and his plans for post-yakuza life and Kasuga expresses how desire to be a family again. Before they part, Masumi talks about a strange dream where Kasuga and Masato swapped places in their births. Masumi then heads to Heian Tower for dinner with Hoshino.
On the way back home, he encounters Tendo and they discuss the events that transpired. Tendo anticipated an attempt on Masumi's life by Reiji Ishioda and intercepts him. Tendo now has a chance at the top and shoots Masumi to get back in the Omi remnants' good graces after betraying them. Masumi is shot in the chest and dies a painful death, the last sight in his life being Tendo's smile. Masumi's body was thrown in the river and recovered the next morning.
Ryu ga Gotoku Online
Masumi's first card in Ryu ga Gotoku Online, SSR Masumi Arakawa (Black), was first released on September 24, 2020 and depicts the version of him seen in the main story of Ryu ga Gotoku Online. It is the second card released as part of a series of SSR cards known as Black cards, which center around various antagonists in the Yakuza series. Although Black cards are normally upgraded versions of existing cards, SSR Masumi Arakawa (Black) is the first and only Black card to serve as a character's "debut" card.
As a Defense-type Yin card, this card places Masumi in an inactive role, with skills that emphasize his militaristic and inspirational qualities as a leader that earned him his nickname and his subordinates' adoration. These skills mainly focus on increasing the survivability and offensive capabilities of Offense-type allies and confer a huge boost of up to 92% in total to criticality rate. As such, this card has a strong affinity towards Offense-type cards that attack multiple times at once.
|SSR 荒川 真澄（黒） (SSR Arakawa Masumi (Black))|
Patriarch of the Arakawa Family, a third-tier subsidiary of the Tojo Clan.
For each Attack-type ally, nullifies 15% of all damage received (except damage received from status abnormalities) and accelerates all allies' cooldown timers by 15%.
Advances Heat Gauge by 200 at the start of battle.
|Battle Skill||Rev Up|
Grants Refresh (nullifying up to 24,000 damage) to the 3 allies with the highest Attack.
|Heat Action||Essence of Inspiration|
Advance Offense-type allies' cooldown timer by up to 24%.
|Passive 1||A Leader's Integrity|
Restores all allies' health by up to 50% at the start of battle, provided they are still conscious.
|Passive 2||Militant Mastery|
Boosts all allies' criticality rate by up to 12%.
If points fall below opponent's points (by percentage), initiates Boss Assault outside of Boss Raid Mode.
- The given height of 185 cm (6′ 1″) is based on the character model's scaling factor within the game's data. For Dragon Engine games, this method is believed to be very accurate (±1 cm). However, this is intended as an estimate, not a substitute for an official statistic.
- Yakuza: Like a Dragon (Ryu ga Gotoku Studio, PC, November 2020) - .JSON File - "character_model_model_data.json"
- Yakuza: Like a Dragon (Ryu ga Gotoku Studio, PS4/PS5/XB1/XSS/XSX/PC, November 10, 2020) - Chapter 10: Justice Tempered by Mercy (English Audio) - Hoshino: "He didn't look a day over twenty, but his eyes had that hard, flinty gaze of an old killer."