Like A Dragon Ishin Review – A Step Back in Time

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Written By Antoine Clerc-Renaud

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Immersing Yourself in the Bakumatsu Era

Like a Dragon Ishin!, or as known in Japan, Ryū ga Gotoku Ishin!, is a kick-ass Yakuza game where Ryu Ga Gotoku Studio or (RGG Studio) envelops us in a time of widespread inequality, chaos, and change: the Bakumatsu era of the 19th century. This was a time when Japan was on the brink of shifting from a feudal domain system to a more modernized nation, inviting players to discover this historical period through an engaging lens of historical fiction.

Embarking on a Historic Journey with Sakamoto Ryoma

The star of this compelling adventure is Ryoma Sakamoto, a significant historical figure with an influential role during the Bakumatsu period. In Like a Dragon: Ishin!, players control Ryoma on a mission to infiltrate the Shinsengumi, a formidable police force of the time, to unveil a masked man’s identity. This narrative fuses historical accuracy with a gripping storyline that binds players to Ryoma’s journey.

Experiencing the Authenticity of a Bygone Era

The map in Like a Dragon: Ishin! is a spectacle, presenting an immersive replica of Japan’s capital city during the Bakumatsu era. It offers a view of life during this turbulent period, from the hustle and bustle of the hospitality district to the light district. The unpaved roads lined with maple trees, the samurai wandering about, the geishas in their vibrant kimonos, all create a vivid portrayal of 19th century Japan.

Combat and Gameplay Mechanics

Taking a step away from the modern day Yakuza series, Like a Dragon Ishin! dons the game in samurai clothes, immersing players in thrilling samurai combat scenarios. Sakamoto Ryoma, as the Captain of the Satsuma Domain Army, commands the sword combat styles in four distinct ways, showcasing a variety of fighting styles. This enhanced game mechanic allows for superiority in combat against the enemy ranks and brings an exciting dynamic to each battle.

Furthermore, the addition of the Trooper Card system is a fantastic gameplay mechanic that adds more depth and strategy to the combat. These Ishin Trooper cards can be used in the Battle Dungeon mini-game, providing buffs, attack options, and healing options during battles.

Venturing Into the Side Streets of Edo

Beyond the main narrative, Like a Dragon Ishin! offers a wealth of optional side activities and mini-games, enabling the player to dive deeper into this world. From the hospitality district to the light district, you will uncover a domain in search of change, with engaging stories waiting at every corner.

Like a Dragon Ishin Streets of Edo
Like a Dragon Ishin Streets of Edo

Enhanced Experience with the Unreal Engine 4

Ryu Ga Gotoku Studio’s decision to remake Like a Dragon Ishin! with the Unreal Engine 4 has resulted in a game with improved graphics and fluid animations, enhancing the game’s overall appeal. Players can experience the capital city in its full glory, from the towering buildings to the quaint, unpaved streets, all rendered in stunning detail.

A Game Worthy of the Yakuza Series

As an entry in the Yakuza series, Like a Dragon Ishin! takes the franchise to new heights. It’s a game that has been lauded in many reviews and ranks highly as a refreshing and immersive experience. The studio’s dedication to preserving historical accuracy and the game’s narrative’s depth make it an outstanding historical adventure.

Like a Dragon Ishin! is Like a Time Machine!

From the moment the announcement trailer released, Like a Dragon Ishin! showed immense potential, which it undoubtedly fulfilled upon its release. This game offers players a unique chance to journey back to 19th century Japan and walk in the shoes of a charismatic leader. This Yakuza game, with its impressive historical backdrop, intricate combat system, and abundant side content, sets a high bar for games that aim to blend history with fiction.

Whether you’re a fan of historical games or the Yakuza series, Like a Dragon Ishin! provides an unforgettable journey into Japan’s past. So, don your samurai gear and prepare to step into the shoes of the legendary Ryoma Sakamoto. After all, the next chapter of history awaits!

Like a Dragon Ishin: Whether you're a fan of historical games or the Yakuza series, Like a Dragon Ishin! provides an unforgettable journey into Japan's past. So, don your samurai gear and prepare to step into the shoes of the legendary Ryoma Sakamoto. After all, the next chapter of history awaits! ACR

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von 10
2023-06-16T22:39:29-0400
Like a Dragon Ishin is available right now on PS5, PS4, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S and PC.

Like a Dragon Ishin FAQ

How does Like a Dragon: Ishin! differ from other games in the Yakuza series?

Like a Dragon: Ishin! differs from other games in the Yakuza series due to its unique combat mechanics and story pacing. Unlike previous games that used a single fighting style, Ishin! allows players to switch between four distinct styles, each with their own skill tree and special moves. This adds a layer of depth to the combat system and provides players with more options to approach fights.

Additionally, the story pacing in Ishin! is slower and more deliberate, taking the time to establish relationships with NPCs through optional side activities and substories. This allows players to feel more invested in the world and the characters, making the eventual payoff of the main story more satisfying.

These differences make Like a Dragon: Ishin! a refreshing and engaging entry in the Yakuza series.

What kind of historical accuracy can players expect in the game’s portrayal of the Bakumatsu period?

Accuracy of portrayal and historical research are essential components of any game that seeks to immerse players in a specific historical period. Like a Dragon: Ishin! is a historical spin-off of the Yakuza series, set in Japan’s Bakumatsu period.

The game’s developers have incorporated extensive historical research to ensure the accuracy of the game’s portrayal of the period. The game features a glossary that defines and clarifies historical terms used in the dialogue, and players can expect to encounter historical figures such as Ryoma Sakamoto.

The game’s attention to historical accuracy is commendable, and it enhances the overall gameplay experience.

Are there any notable changes or improvements in the remade version of the game using Unreal Engine 4?

The remade version of Like a Dragon: Ishin! using Unreal Engine 4 features notable improvements in graphics and gameplay changes. The game’s reconstructed visuals under Unreal Engine 4 offer improved graphics, allowing for an uncapped framerate on PC, though there have been reports of stuttering and instances of pop-in.

The combat system now involves switching between four fighting styles, each with their own skill trees, and features many new Heat Actions. Side activities and substories are also available, allowing players to establish bonds with NPCs and earn Virtue currency through an in-game achievement tracker.

The inclusion of Trooper Cards, which provide buffs, attack options, and healing options, is now universal and accessible in the Battle Dungeon mini-game, and story bosses also possess Trooper Cards.

Like a Dragon: Ishin! is an excellent revitalization of an already solid entry in the Like a Dragon series, offering a refreshing gameplay experience with Ryoma’s unique arsenal and a sheer amount of optional side content to dive into.

How does the Virtue currency system work and what kind of rewards can players earn?

The Virtue currency system in Like a Dragon: Ishin! is an in-game achievement tracker that rewards players for completing various gameplay mechanics, such as defeating enemies and completing side activities.

Players can earn Virtue currency rewards, which can be used to purchase Trooper Cards, items, and equipment.

Trooper Cards provide buffs, attack options, and healing options, and are now universal and accessible in the Battle Dungeon mini-game.

The system adds an additional layer of depth to the gameplay, encouraging players to explore the vast array of optional side content and establish bonds with NPCs.

The Virtue currency system is an integral part of the game, providing players with a satisfying sense of progression and accomplishment.

Can players expect any post-game content or DLC releases for Like a Dragon: Ishin!?

Like a Dragon: Ishin! offers players a wealth of optional side content to dive into, but it is unclear whether any post-game content or DLC releases are planned.

It is worth noting, however, that the game is a historical spin-off of the Yakuza series, which has had several post-release updates and DLC releases in the past.

It is possible that a similar approach may be taken with Like a Dragon: Ishin!, but no official announcements have been made at this time.

Regardless, players can enjoy the game’s unique combat system, optional side activities, and historical setting without any additional content.

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