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Blood. Honour. Respect. Live the Yakuza Legend.

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Yakuza, originally released in Japan as Like a Dragon (龍が如く Ryū Ga Gotoku) is an action-adventure beat 'em up video game created by Toshihiro NagoshiWP, and developed and published by SEGAWP. The original SonyWP PlayStation 2WP game was developed between 2002 and 2005[1] and released on December 8, 2005 in Japan, with a worldwide release in September 2006.

A remaster of both the original Yakuza and Yakuza 2 titled Ryū Ga Gotoku 1&2 HD Edition (龍が如く 1&2 HD EDITION) was released in Japan on the PlayStation 3 on November 1, 2012 and the Wii U on August 8, 2013. A remake of the game for the PlayStation 3WP and PlayStation 4WP was released in Japan in 2016, called Yakuza Kiwami. This remake was released worldwide in August 2017 only on PS4, and on SteamWP a year later, becoming the second title in the Like a Dragon series officially released on PC.



The game is set in the fictional district of Kamurocho, designed after the real-life district of Kabukicho in Shinjuku, Japan.


October 1, 1995: on a stormy autumn night in the Tokyo entertainment district of Kamurocho, a moustached yakuza family boss lies dead on the floor of his darkened office. The lightning punctuates his features, most notably his broken glasses, through which the bullet that killed him went before entering his head. In front of him stands a grey-suited young man, murder weapon in hand. A posse of police officers swarm into the office, weapons drawn, ordering the man to drop his gun. The black-haired young man complies, turning around to reveal his face.

The name of the man who was shot is Sohei Dojima. The grey-suited man, Kazuma Kiryu, is not the one who pulled the trigger on his patriarch. Rather, the deed was done by his sworn brother Akira "Nishiki" Nishikiyama, in order to protect their childhood friend Yumi Sawamura after Dojima tried to force himself on her. Knowing that Nishiki's sister was gravely ill and needed to be looked after, Kiryu takes the fall for him and serves 10 years in prison for a crime that was not his own.

Ten years later: Kiryu is released from prison into the middle of a crisis within Japan's biggest yakuza organization, the Tojo Clan. Ten billion yen has gone missing from the organization, igniting a power struggle. On top of that, Yumi has gone missing, and Nishiki, now a powerful patriarch of his own yakuza family, is out to kill him. Now, Kiryu must unravel the threads holding these mysteries together with the help of Haruka, a young girl caught in the eye of the storm.

Story Summary[]

SPOILER WARNING: Plot details for Yakuza/Kiwami follow. (Skip)

Chapter 1: Fate of a Traitor[]

In 1995, Kazuma Kiryu is a respected lieutenant advisor for the Dojima Family, a subsidiary of the Tojo Clan. On September 30, he goes on a collection run with one of his subordinates, Shinji Tanaka, to collect late payments from a defaulting debtor. After getting the money, he has a run in with Goro Majima, the Captain of the rival Shimano Family. Majima tries to goad Kiryu into a fight to test his legendary reputation within the Clan, but Kiryu refuses. Afterwards, he goes to his favorite bar, Serena, and spends the rest of the night drinking with the bar's owner, Reina, and his childhood friends Akira Nishikiyama and Yumi Sawamura.

The next day, during a meeting with his foster father and superior in the Dojima Family, Shintaro Kazama, Kiryu gets a call from Shinji warning him that Yumi was kidnapped by thugs working for Dojima Family patriarch Sohei Dojima, and that Nishiki has already gone out to try and save her. Kiryu rushes to the Patriarch's office, where finds Nishiki standing over Dojima's dead body; whom he'd just shot after he tried to sexually assault Yumi. Since Nishiki's heavily ill sister Yuko needs her brother to take care of her, Kiryu tells Nishiki to leave with Yumi, since he'll take the fall for the murder. Despite heavy objections from Nishiki, Kiryu is adamant and Nishiki eventually agrees. Minutes later, the police arrive and arrest Kiryu for the crime. After questioning Kiryu, Makoto Date; the Detective in charge of the investigation, doesn't believe he is responsible for murdering Dojima, but he is pressured by his superiors into letting it go and charging him anyway. Ultimately, Kiryu is sentenced to fifteen years in prison and is expelled from the Tojo Clan for killing his boss. While in prison, Kiryu learns from Shinji that Yumi disappeared after Dojima's murder and nobody has been able to find her.

Chapter 2: Ten Years Later[]

In 2005, the Tojo Clan's top patriarchs assemble for an emergency meeting with Clan Chairman Masaru Sera, called by Akira Nishikiyama. Since Dojima's murder, Kazama and Nishiki have both established their own independent yakuza groups, the Kazama Family and Nishikiyama Family, which have become two of the Clan's largest. During the meeting, Nishiki reveals an informant has told him that the Tojo's 10-billion yen cash reserves have been stolen from the their bank vault, much to the fury of most of the other patriarchs, particularly Futoshi Shimano of the Shimano Family. Chairman Sera confirms the robbery did take place, but assures the patriarchs that Clan Headquarters is handling the matter, before adjourning the meeting.

A few days later, Kiryu is released from prison early due to good behaviour. He receives a letter from Kazama, telling him to go to Club Stardust in Kamurocho, where he'll arrange to meet with him without the Tojo Clan finding out. Kiryu goes to the club and meets with its owner, Kazuki, and his yakuza-hating right-hand man, Yuya. However, Kazuki tells Kiryu that his meeting with Kazama will have to be delayed, since the Tojo Clan has been thrown into turmoil by the revelation of the theft of their reserves and by the assassination of Chairman Sera, who was shot the preceding night.

Shortly after, Shimano Family thugs show up and try to shakedown the club for protection money, resulting in a fight between them and Kiryu. The brawl is stopped by the arrival of a gun-toting Shinji Tanaka, who drives the thugs away. Shinji tells Kiryu about what's happened in the Clan while he was away: The clan's three largest groups are now the Kazama Family, Shimano Family and Nishikiyama Family; the latter of which Shinji is now a part of. Despite this, Shinji is still loyal to Kazama and has been working as a double-agent for him within Nishiki's organization. Shinji also warns that Nishiki is not the same person he was before Kiryu was jailed, having become cold and ruthless in his pursuit of power. After Shinji insists that Kazama will be tied up with arranging Chairman Sera's succession for the foreseeable future, Kiryu convinces him to help sneak him into Sera's funeral the following day so that he can covertly meet with Kazama.

Chapter 3: A Funeral of Fists[]

On the day of Sera's funeral, Kiryu attends the ceremony at the Tojo Clan Headquarters incognito as a mourner. As he goes to meet with Shinji in the building's back entrance, he is attacked by a man from the Omi Alliance, the Tojo's Osaka-based rivals, who claims that he was acting on orders from Nishiki. Kiryu easily defeats the thug and proceeds into the building.

Shinji takes Kiryu to a secluded meeting room and then retrieves Patriarch Kazama. Both men reunite after ten years apart and Patriarch Kazama tells Kiryu that he has important information regarding Yumi's disappearance. However, before he can explain himself, Kazama is suddenly shot by a sniper. The gunshot attracts the attention of Patriarch Shimano and several of his goons, who recognize Kiryu and attack him after mistakenly concluding that he shot Kazama. Kiryu flees by jumping out of a window and fights his way through multiple guards to get to the headquarters' exit, where he's confronted once again by Shimano. Kiryu duels the Patriarch and manages to defeat him before escaping out the front gate.

As he's being chased down the street by yakuza, Kiryu is rescued by Detective Date, the lead investigator in the Dojima murder case from ten years back, who shows up in a car and tells Kiryu to get in before driving them both away from the scene.

Chapter 4: The Encounter[]

Date and Kiryu speak at a bar once they've gotten away from the funeral. The Detective tells Kiryu that he's investigating Chairman Sera's murder and wants his help, due to his connection to the Tojo Clan. Kiryu agrees, despite not currently having any leads.

Kiryu goes to visit Reina at Serena, who is glad to see him again. When Kiryu asks what she knows about Yumi, Reina tells him that five years after Dojima's murder, Yumi's sister Mizuki (whom nobody had previously known about) showed up trying to locate her sister. Mizuki worked at Serena with Reina for a few years, in the hopes that Yumi would eventually turn up, but she recently quit and decided to open her own bar elsewhere in Tokyo. Reina believes that Mizuki may have learned something new about Yumi, but she hasn't been able to get into contact with her to verify it. On Reina's suggestion, Kiryu goes to a nearby bar whose owner may know about Mizuki's new establishment, only to find the place's owner and all his customers murdered. At the scene of the murder, he also finds a scared little girl called Haruka.

Kiryu takes Haruka away from the scene and asks her where her parents are. However, Haruka says she's an orphan and that she snuck out of her orphanage to look for her mother, who owns a bar in Kamurocho. After the pair rescue a sick puppy from a gang of hoodlums, Haruka passes out from exhaustion and Kiryu takes her to Serena to rest. Once she awakens, Kiryu and Reina ask her about her mother and are surprised to learn that her mother is Yumi's sister Mizuki. Haruka also tells the pair what she knows where her mother's bar, Ares, is located: atop the Millennium Tower.

Kiryu takes Haruka to Ares, but find the place empty. While investigating the bar, Kiryu gets a call from Detective Date, who tells him that a ring belonging to Yumi was found at the scene of the Tojo Clan's bank vault robbery, making her the prime suspect in the theft. Just then, Omi Alliance thugs led by a man named Hiroshi Hayashi arrive at the bar and tell Kiryu that they've been sent to capture Haruka. Since Kiryu refuses to hand Yumi's niece to the yakuza, a battle breaks out, which Kiryu wins.

Chapter 5: Purgatory[]

Needing new leads, Date suggests that Kiryu should track down The Florist of Sai, a secretive information broker who could provide information on Yumi, Mizuki and the 10-billion yen. Kiryu eventually discovers that the Florist runs an entire illegal pleasure district underneath a homeless camp in West Park, with brothels, casinos and a cage-fighting arena. The Florist offers to give Kiryu the information he requested, but only if he wins three fights at his fighting arena in lieu of payment. Kiryu agrees and successfully defeats three opponents in the Coliseum. Fulfilling his part of the deal, the Florist tells Kiryu that a few days prior, a strange woman came to him asking for information about a girl named Haruka. He is convinced that woman was either Yumi or Mizuki, meaning that despite being in hiding after robbing the Tojo's bank, at least one of the women is still in Tokyo.

The pair's conversation is interrupted when the Florist gets word from his security detail that a battered Detective Date has arrived at the entrance to the Park. Date tells Kiryu that, while he and Haruka were coming to the park, they were attacked by thugs working for Captain Goro Majima of the Shimano Family, who beat him and kidnapped Haruka. With help from the Florist, Kiryu learns that Majima's cronies took Haruka to the Yoshida Batting Center and he immediately takes off after them. At the Batting Center, Kiryu confronts Majima, who reveals that he only kidnapped the girl so he could finally force Kiryu to fight him. Aggravated, Kiryu battles Majima and his goons, ultimately defeating them. When one of Majima's lackeys tries to stab Kiryu while he's distracted, Majima takes the stab wound for him, since he refuses to let anyone else kill Kiryu.

As Majima's men take him to the hospital, Haruka approaches Kiryu. The girl says that a man she did not know snuck into the Batting Center while Majima's men were distracted and untied her. The man also told her to look after the pendent which Yumi had given her the last time she'd visited Haruka at the orphanage since, according to him, it's "worth 10-billion yen."

Chapter 6: Fatherhood[]

Kiryu gets called to meet with the Florist once again, who asks a favor of him: His son, Takashi, whom he hasn't seen since he was a child, has gotten into trouble and he wants Kiryu to help him. Takashi is dating Kyoka Atobe, the daughter of the patriarch of the Atobe Family, despite her father's disapproval. The pair have recently stolen money from her father so they can elope together and the Atobe Family is currently looking for them, so the Florist wants Kiryu to protect them while he tries to smooth things out with Patriarch Atobe. Kiryu tracks the couple down to the Yoshida Batting Center and protects them from members of Takashi's former gang who've been paid by Atobe to capture him. During the scuffle, Takashi and Kyoka escape, only for Kiryu to track them down once more to Club Deborah. Unfortunately for them, Atobe Family thugs have also found them and Kiryu once again has to fight to save the pair. After the Atobe thugs are defeated, they get word from their patriarch to let the couple go, since the Florist of Sai has persuaded him to let them get married.

Kiryu returns to Serena and finds Date asleep at the bar, having gotten drunk while waiting for him. Date's phone rings and an angry young woman chides him for standing her up. The woman is Date's daughter, Saya, whom Date was supposed to meet for dinner. Kiryu goes to their meeting spot to apologize on Date's behalf, only for Saya and a friend of hers to proposition Kiryu to sleep with them for money, which Kiryu rejects and berates them for. Saya leaves in a huff when she realizes that Kiryu is her father's friend, but Saya's friend apologizes to him and says that Saya is desperately trying to raise money to help her boyfriend Shota pay off his debts to loansharks. Kiryu and Date do some investigating and discover that Shota is taking advantage of Saya, since he isn't actually in debt and has been tricking her into giving him her money so he can live lavishly. Date goes to the office out of which Shota and his cohorts run multiple of these scams and confronts them, threatening to shut them down. The gang tries to kill Date, but he is saved when Kiryu arrives to rescue him. The pair beat Shota and his accomplices and force them to give back Saya's money, which she is deeply thankful for.

Chapter 7: Dragon and Carp[]

A few days later, a woman's body is found in Tokyo Bay and, from the tattoo on her chest, Date and Kiryu realize that it is Mizuki. Kiryu recognizes that the tattoo was made by his old tattoo artist, Utabori, and goes to see him. The tattooist says the design was his, but he had not made that tattoo, rather an imitator had. While Kiryu is at the tattoo parlor, he gets a call from Nishiki, who somehow knew where he was. Nishiki tells Kiryu to meet him the following night at Serena, so they can talk.

Kiryu and Date don't tell Haruka that her mother is dead, but she realizes that something is wrong and asks for explanations. When Kiryu refuses to tell her, the two have an argument and Haruka storms out, leaving behind her aunt Yumi's pendent. Kiryu chases after Haruka, but cannot find her. However, he soon receives a message from an unknown man telling him that he has kidnapped Haruka and demanding the pendent in exchange for her return. Kiryu and Date go to the arranged meeting in Club Stardust and confront Haruka's mysterious kidnapper and his cronies, with the exchange eventually devolving into a fight. Kiryu defeats the strange men and tries to question their leader, but he is killed by one of his own men before he flees. After the commotion is over, Kiryu mournfully tells Haruka about her mother's death. Despite her grief, Haruka asks to keep helping Kiryu in finding Yumi, since she's the only family she has left.

Before his meeting, Kiryu leaves Haruka with Date and the Florist in West Park, to make sure she'll be safe. Afterwards, Kiryu meets with Nishiki in Serena, with Reina serving as mediator. Nishiki tells Kiryu that it was his men who accidentally killed Mizuki while questioning her about the money's location, but insists that he killed the men responsible for her death in retaliation. He asks Kiryu to give him Haruka's pendent, since he wants to recover the 10-billion yen and use them to become the next Chairman of the Tojo Clan. However, when Nishiki also admits that it was him who shot Kazama during Sera's funeral, Kiryu strikes him and the negotiation between the former friends breaks down. Nishiki leaves the bar and then sends in some of his men to attack his oath brother, but Kiryu defeats them and departs.

Chapter 8: The Scheme[]

Kiryu returns to West Park only to find the place has been raided by gang-members and Haruka has been kidnapped. The Florist explains that the attackers were members of Kamurocho's three color gangs; petty crooks that do grunt work for various yakuza groups. Kiryu tracks down and beats the leaders of the Blue Z and then the White Edge before discovering that the third gang, the Bloody Eye were the ones responsible for Haruka's kidnapping. Kiryu finds the Bloody Eye's leaders, Big Akai and Little Akai, at Club Deborah and fights them to get them to reveal what they've done with Haruka. As it turns out, they were paid to kidnap her by Lau Ka Long, the leader of Yokohama's Snake Flower Triad, with whom Kiryu has a turbulent history. Kiryu relays this to Date and the pair set out for Yokohama to rescue Haruka.

Elsewhere, Patriarch Shimano has a meeting with Lau, since the two are working together. Shimano intends to use the kidnapped Haruka to force Yumi to give him the 10-billion yen, which he will then split with Lau and with his other accomplice: Yukio Terada, the Chief of Headquarters for the Omi Alliance, who is backing Shimano's claim to the Tojo chairmanship in exchange for the Tojo becoming a subsidiary to the Omi once he gets into power.

Chapter 9: The Rescue[]

Kiryu and Date arrive at the Chinese restaurant which the Snake Flower use as a base. Since Date was injured during the attack on Purgatory, Kiryu goes in alone and fights his way through the triad's goons until he reaches Lau's office. The Chinese gangster tells Kiryu that he's already given the pendent to Nishikiyama, since Shimano was trying to short-change him, but that he intends to keep Haruka, since somebody else has paid him to deliver her to them. Kiryu defeats Lau after an extended duel, only for several police officers led by Date's former pupil, Junichi Sudo, to bust into the restaurant and arrest him for kidnapping Haruka.

Date demands that Sudo release Kiryu, since nobody reported Haruka as kidnapped, but Sudo insists that he had orders from his superiors to arrest Kiryu and hold onto Haruka. Enraged, Date takes Haruka from government custody and releases Kiryu from jail, against orders from his bosses. While driving back to Tokyo, Date tells Kiryu that he'd been investigating the mysterious men who kidnapped Haruka in Club Stardust. He suspects they're part of the MIA, a black-ops government agency led by a politician called Kyohei Jingu, and that they're the ones behind Sudo's orders to arrest Kiryu as well. Date also tells Haruka that the autopsy of the woman found in Tokyo Bay revealed that she wasn't actually Mizuki, but rather an unconnected woman who'd copied her tattoo design and which Nishiki's goons mistook for her. Suddenly, Snake Flower thugs start attacking Date's car, resulting in a car chase and shootout that the trio narrowly survive.

Chapter 10: Shape of Love[]

Kiryu gets a message from Shinji telling him that Nishiki has an informant close to Kiryu feeding him information. Acting on this, Kiryu goes to the Florist and, with his surveillance footage, confirms his suspicion that the informant was Reina, who'd always been in love with Nishiki and has betrayed Kiryu for it. Upon returning to Serena to confront Reina, Kiryu and Date find the place in shambles, with a note from Reina confessing to her betrayal and claiming she'll make up for it. Kiryu receives a call from a harrowed Shinji, who tells him that Reina called him and Nishiki to Serena and then tried to shoot Nishiki. He asks Kiryu for help, since he and Reina are now on the run through Kamurocho, hiding from hitmen Nishiki has sent after them.

Kiryu manages to track down the building where his friends were hiding but, by the time he arrives, Nishikiyama Family hitman Kazuto Arase has already killed Reina and seriously wounded Shinji. A furious Kiryu attacks Arase and his men, beating them all in the ensuing fight. Once the assassins are down, Kiryu comforts a dying Shinji, who apologizes for his failure and says that Kiryu can find where Kazama has been hiding by talking to his girlfriend, Akemi. However, Shinji succumbs to his wounds before he can explain how to contact her.

Chapter 11: Honor and Humanity[]

After regrouping with his allies, the Florist tells Kiryu that Shinji frequented a soapland called Shangri-La, whose number one girl is called Akemi. However, gaining entry into the soapland requires either paying a million yen or having a pass from somebody who is already a member. In order to gain the needed pass, Kiryu ends up having to get a fake passport for the girlfriend of a regular member, which in turn involves saving a passport forger from Snake Flower Triad goons who wanted to kill her for taking away their clientele. After getting the passport, the Forger tells Kiryu that she'd already heard about him from his foster father, Kazama, who had hired her to create an entire fake identity five years prior.

After managing to secure entry to Shangri-La, Kiryu and Haruka meet with Akemi, and Kiryu tells her of Shinji's demise. Despite her grief, Akemi tells Kiryu that Kazama is hiding with none other than Terada of the Omi Alliance, who only pretended to work with Shimano in order to spy on him for Kazama. The Omi chief is keeping Kazama hidden in his personal yacht in Shibaura Wharf. Additionally, Akemi tells Kiryu that Shinji said Nishiki isn't just searching for the 10-billion but also for Chairman Sera's will, since the late Third Chairman named his successor in it. However, the conversation is interrupted when Goro Majima and several of his men crash a dump-truck through Shangri-La's main gate. As it turns out, Majima survived his stab wound and now wants a re-match against Kiryu. After beating Majima once more, Kiryu and Haruka depart.

Chapter 12: The Reunion[]

Kiryu and Haruka go to Shibaura Wharf, where Terada welcomes them aboard his yacht. Upon seeing him, Haruka recognizes Terada as the man who freed her when Majima had taken her captive and who told her of her pendent's value. Inside the boat, Kazama greets Kiryu and begins to explain the truth of all that's transpired.

Kazama says that after Dojima's attack, Yumi lost her memories and fled the hospital. Kazama eventually tracked her down but, having determined that Nishiki was Dojima's real killer and thus no longer trusting him, decided to keep Yumi hidden. Within a couple of months, amnesiac Yumi met Kyohei Jingu, the Director of the MIA, who did business with Kazama and Chairman Sera, and the two began dating. Within a year, the couple had a daughter together but, soon after, Jingu was offered an arranged marriage with the prime minister's daughter, so he abandoned Yumi and their daughter to further his career. Over the next couple of years, Jingu would become ruthless and deeply ambitious in his pursuit of political power. When a journalist tried to blackmail him with the info that he'd fathered a daughter out of wedlock, he had the journalist killed and then ordered Chairman Sera to murder Yumi and his own daughter to keep the truth hidden. Jingu had the power to do this because he had tricked Sera and appropriated the Tojo Clan's 10-billion yen cash reserves into an account under his control through a money laundering scheme. Though Sera did initially try to have Yumi killed, Kazama stopped the hitman and then talked Sera out of following through.

After surviving this hit on her, Yumi regained her memories. In order to prevent further attacks by Jingu's lackeys, Kazama created the fake identity of "Mizuki," Yumi's supposed sister, so that she could live under an alias. As it turns out, Mizuki was Yumi all along, and thus Haruka is Yumi and Jingu's daughter, who had to be placed in an orphanage for her own safety. Yumi lived under the alias of Mizuki for five years but, as Jingu grew more powerful, he became a bigger threat to her and to the Tojo. Due to that, Kazama, Yumi and Sera robbed the vault containing the money and hid it, hoping to rob Jingu of his influence. However, the plan backfired when Nishiki got word of the robbery and revealed it to the rest of the Clan.

The conversation is interrupted when Terada's yacht is attacked by the Shimano Family. Shimano had grown suspicious of Terada and had him followed, correctly deducing that he'd been secretly working with Kazama. Shimano's forces initially overwhelm Kiryu and Terada's men, but just as the fight seems lost, Kazama's right-hand man Osamu Kashiwagi arrives with reinforcements, leading to a giant battle between the Kazama Family and the Shimano Family. Ultimately, Shimano's men are beaten but Shimano refuses to surrender, so he throws a grenade at Kazama and Haruka before he is shot dead by Terada. Kazama shields Haruka from the explosion but ends up getting fatally wounded.

A horrified Kiryu cradles his dying foster father, who tells him that Yumi is hiding with the 10-billion in the bar Ares. He also gives Kiryu Chairman Sera's will, which he'd been safekeeping. With his final breaths, Kazama confesses that he was the one who killed Kiryu's real parents when he was a baby as part of a Tojo hit. He adopted Kiryu out of shame, but eventually came to love him like a real son. Kiryu forgives Kazama and bursts into tears as he dies in his arms.

Chapter 13: Finale[]

Kiryu and Haruka head out to Ares but they are attacked en route by a mob of thugs paid by Nishikiyama. The pair face further trouble when MIA agents attack them at the Millennium Tower lobby. Simultaneously, Date gets caught browsing classified Tokyo PD files by Detective Sudo. However, Sudo had started his own investigation into the orders to arrest Kiryu and discovered Jingu's crimes, so he's decided to help Date in bringing down the MIA's director.

Kiryu and Haruka reach Ares, where they are finally reunited with Yumi. Yumi is overjoyed, both at being able to treat Haruka as her daughter and at seeing Kiryu for the first time in ten years. However, the happy moment is interrupted when Jingu and a platoon of elite MIA operatives arrive by helicopter. The corrupt politician is determined to take back the 10 billion and kill Kiryu, Yumi and Haruka to protect his status. Jingu also reveals that he's made a deal with the Omi Alliance, where he would split the 10-billion with them so that they can take over the Tokyo underworld and, in exchange, control it to Jingu's advantage. However, as Jingu gloats, Date and Sudo fly over the Tower in another helicopter and inform him that they've already secured a warrant for his arrest, so no further government back-up will arrive to help him. Jingu is not discouraged and orders his Omi Alliance thugs and his MIA cronies to murder Kiryu. However, Kiryu does not go down easily. After revealing that Sera and Kazama declared him the Fourth Chairman of the Tojo Clan in the Chairman's will, Kiryu fights the MIA and the Omi and, much to Jingu's horror, he manages to singlehandedly defeat all of them and then beat Jingu himself into submission.

Once the MIA's forces are dealt with, Yumi uses Haruka's pendent to unlock a hidden vault where the 10-billion were stored. At that moment, Nishiki makes his presence known. Despite Yumi and Kiryu's pleas that it's not too late to repent, Nishiki says that he has chosen his path and insists that he will beat Kiryu and claim the 10-billion to install himself as Fourth Chairman of the Tojo Clan. The two oath brothers have a climactic final fight, where Kiryu comes out triumphant. Just as the battle seems over, a badly beaten but still alive Jingu returns and shoots Yumi. Infuriated and finally repentant, Nishiki stabs Jingu and then sets off a bomb which Yumi had brought in order to kill him, sacrificing himself to save Kiryu and Haruka. The resulting explosion scatters the Tojo's 10-billion into the city below, where crowds of people start picking it up. After the dust has settled, Kiryu and Haruka tearfully bid goodbye to a dying Yumi, who says that she is happy that she got to see them again, even if just for a few minutes. The police arrive on the scene soon afterwards and briefly begin to take Kiryu into custody, until Date and Sudo stops them. Though Kiryu briefly considers going back to prison, Date convinces him to not confess to anything, since he is now the only person Haruka has left.

A few days later, a ceremony is held at the Tojo Clan Headquarters, where Kiryu is officially inducted as the Fourth Chairman of the Tojo Clan and then immediately resigns, much to the shock of all the Clan's patriarchs. Instead, Kiryu names Terada as the next Tojo Chairman, in recognition of his service to Kazama. Kiryu leaves the Tojo headquarters and then Date drives him to Kamurocho, where he bids him farewell and tells him to stay in touch. Afterwards, Kiryu picks up Haruka from a local arcade and the adoptive father and daughter head home together.



Battle techniques[]


  • Rush Combo: This is determined by the character's use of throwing freestyle fists. It is not a strong impact to be reckoned with but it gives an opportunity for a counterattack towards the enemy, such as dishing out the "Uppercut" as a finishing blow. Depending on how many times square is pressed, the finishing blow will change. Be sure to assess the threat to decide which finishing blow to use. For example, using the combo square square triangle, will cause the enemy to keel over in pain, allowing you to follow up with a grab and continue your combo even after the finishing blow.
  • Grab: Kiryu can grab enemies by pressing circle. After grabbing an enemy, he can throw them by pressing circle again, do a 3 light punch combo with the last punch sending the enemy flying by pressing square repeatedly, or a heavy kick which also sends them flying. Tough enemies will require you to mash circle to throw them and break free from your grasp when trying to kick them. Even stronger enemies (like bosses) will usually not be able to be grabbed.


  • Guard: To protect your character in unarmed combat, 'Guard' is deployed by drawing your hands back quickly. However, it is insignificant with rear or bladed weapon confrontations. As such, situations need to be assessed.
  • Sway: An all-directions quick break away (left, right, forward, backward) that defends the character, when applied well could work favorably. When timed correctly, you can circle around the enemy and deploy a rear counterattack. Just as you cannot block attacks from behind, enemies cannot either. You have to be careful with tougher enemies, however, as they can dodge out of the way too.

Heat Action[]

This option becomes available in the midst of a battle when certain conditions are met and when your character becomes stronger physically and has learned various techniques. For example, when grabbing an enemy and standing near a wall with a full heat bar, Kiryu will violently throw the enemy at the wall, and with another well timed attack, will follow up with a swift stomp to the head. This can also apply to any weapon you hold. After acquiring certain skills, a heat action can be used with a full heat gauge while holding a weapon. While holding a chair, for example, Kiryu will throw the chair over the enemy's head, doing massive damage.

Development and Release[]

On August 6, 2005, SEGA announced that it would be holding a press conference for a new game by Toshihiro NagoshiWP, titled simply "Project J," on the 23rd of that month.[2] At the press conference, held in a club in KabukichoWP, Kamurocho's real-life equivalent, SEGA revealed that the new game would be called Ryu Ga Gotoku (Like a Dragon). At the time, the game had been in development for three years, and was a departure for Nagoshi, who had previously worked on family-friendly games.[1] The games's budget was 2,4 billion Yen, or approximately 21 million dollars.[3] Most of the team members are from different backgrounds, such as developers that have their roots in the arcade with titles such as Virtua Fighter 3WP and Super Monkey BallWP, as well as team members having experience in novel console titles like Panzer DragoonWP and Jet Set RadioWP. The team members all felt that they went against their careers considering that the new game didn't match anything they had previously done. Nagoshi felt that this was an advantage, making them all play on even playing field. Anything that was done had to go through Nagoshi first, since only he had a concrete idea of how the game is going to end up. [4] Nagoshi chose to make the game about yakuzas due to the amount of violence the subject usually presented. It was also made to attract more gamers, as he felt there were less gamers during the time the game was made.[5] The development team wanted to accurately portray yakuza, especially such as their obsession with jingi, their code of honor. Originally the game had scenes where pinky fingers were cut off, a traditional punishment, but these scenes were removed so that CERO would give Yakuza a favorable rating. Though using the gameplay schematics of one of Nagoshi's earlier titles, SpikeoutWP, [6] as basis for the combat, Yakuza utilized an entirely new engine crafted for the game, some of the software used to help develop the game were Autodesk SoftimageWP.[7]

The first draft for the story of the game only included the characters of Kazuma Kiryu, Haruka Sawamura, Akira Nishikiyama, Yumi Sawamura, Sohei Dojima, Shintaro Kazama Makoto Date, and The Florist of Sai.[8]


Released a few months before its proper retail distribution in December 2005, this test version of the original Japanese game starts off with a trailer, and then, following the prompt to press the Start button, a warning window that it is intended for mature audiences only[9], after which the player can choose to start a new game, or go to the options menu to change the Vibration settings (The other settings choices are greyed out).

Should they start a new game, they will talk with a man in a suit, known as the "Guide"[10] , to sample the game proper.

The Guide will give them an overview of the demo's purpose, then present them with a set of options:

  • Sample part of the main story, which entails Kiryu returning to Kamurocho to look for Stardust to meet with its owner, so that he can meet with Kazama in secret (10 Years Later). On the way, the player can engage in a few side quests, fight, and follow the plot until after the run-in with Shimano minions. Once the next cutscene ends, the player is taken back to the "talk" with the Guide[11].
  • The battle tutorial within the Peace Finance base
  • A "Battle Section," where by they will fight against random enemies from the story, ending with the Futoshi Shimano boss
  • Romance a girl at the hostess club
  • Look around the Yoshida Batting Center, play baseball
  • Look around the Casino in Purgatory, gamble
  • Return to the title screen

A localized version of this demo was made, accessible only through obtaining a demo compilation disk distributed by Official U.S. PlayStation magazine, also released a few months before the final localization. While mostly identical to the original demo (even using the Japanese audio), this demo starts out with a different trailer, the Shimano boss fight in the Battle Section was cut, and all the swearing, outside of "bastard," is censored with symbols[12]. Like the other demos on the disc, but unlike the original demo, the player is only given 30 minutes to try out the Yakuza demo, after which they will be booted back to the disk's main menu.

The translation is also somewhat different in places, with the phrasing of certain things and names being changed in the actual product. For (a more minor) example, Reina is referred to as "Rina."

Regional differences[]

  • Unlike all the other games in the series (up until Judgment), the US and European versions of Yakuza came with a full English-speaking voice cast, including Star Wars actor Mark Hamill as Goro Majima.
  • Some character names were changed. Shintaro Kazama for example became Shintaro Fuma, and The Florist of Sai became Kage.
  • In the Japanese version, Kiryu would be referred to as such, followed by an honorific (-san, -chan, etc.), very seldom being referred to as "Kazuma." The English version is about the same, only "Kiryu" is replaced with "Kazuma."
  • Instances of Kiryu calling Majima, "Big Brother Majima (Majima no nii-san)" was changed to simply "Majima-san" in the dub.
  • The Japanese version had chapter names displayed in read-right-to-left calligraphy. In the English version, the chapter names are displayed as normal. The latter would be the case for all Japanese versions moving forward, including Kiwami.
  • An English rendering of the abstract font used to display character names in the Japanese version was made for the International release.
  • The English dialog is noticeably more vulgar than the original Japanese script, with many instances of swearing where there was none originally. The translators were explicitly encouraged to do this.[13]

Example of UK English on the PAL version of Yakuza.

  • The PAL version features French, German, Spanish, and Italian text languages, as well as having UK localized English subtitles and menu text. The pre-rendered main screen text however remains in American English.
    • For example, whilst the screen may display "Get to the lobby!," the subtitles will say "Get to the foyer!"
    • The fight title card against "Street Hoodlums" is subtitled as "Street Hooligans."
  • As the screenshot of the PAL version shows, the English text on action indicators was removed, while the Kanji was replaced with icons that correspond with their original meaning.
    • These icons would be used for action indicators in all subsequent localizations until Yakuza 5, which would translate the words into English.


Alternate Boxart[]


Official Art[]




  1. 1.0 1.1 https://uk.ign.com/articles/2005/08/23/segas-project-j-revealed
  2. https://uk.ign.com/articles/2005/08/06/segas-project-j
  3. https://gamingbolt.com/15-amazing-facts-you-probably-didnt-know-about-the-yakuza-series/4
  4. http://fftranslations.atspace.co.uk/rtz/nagoshi.html#gsc.tab=0
  5. http://archive.videogamesdaily.com/features/sega_toshihiro_nagoshi_iv_jun06_p1.asp
  6. https://web.archive.org/web/20140329141330/http://www.1up.com/do/feature?pager.offset=3&cId=3153161
  7. https://game.watch.impress.co.jp/img/gmw/docs/294/291/html/ryu15.jpg.html
  8. Masayoshi Yokoyama on Twitter (June 22, 2013)
  9. Excerpt from Ryū ga Gotoku (2005) demo: 「本ソフトは18歳以上対象です。18歳未満の方のプレイはご遠慮ください。」
  10. 「セガが贈る”Playstation 2”裏用ソフト「龍が如く」のせかいへようこそ。」「この世界を少しの間だけ体験してもらおう。」「さっそくだが、何を体験したいんだい?」
  11. 「おう、お疲れさま。」「もうちょっとやっていくか?」
  12. Excerpt from Yakuza (2006) demo:"Please!! No more! Who the @#%& are you?", with the censored word being "hell".
  13. http://www.japansubculture.com/mind-your-fks-and-sts-localizing-yakuza/