Sega has officially announced Yakuza 7, and it’s going to be a big change for the series.
Translated from Japanese, the game is titled Yakuza 7: Whereabouts of Light and Darkness, but I would expect that to be changed to something a bit more catchy for the games Western release. Thanks to Gematsu’s handy translation of the games Japanese website, we know that Yakuza 7 will be set in Yokohoma and it will begin the story of new protagonist Ichiban Kasuga as he returns from an 18 year spell behind bars after he was asked to take the fall for his gangs crimes.
However, it’s definitely not the story that will be grabbing attention right now. For the first time in the series, Yakuza 7 will drop the series traditional beat ’em up style in favour of a turn-based combat system, which could well be a controversial decision. According to Gematsu’s translation, the website describes the combat system as follows:
“Yakuza 7 uses a “live command RPG battle” system that combines the series’ signature action with an RPG command system. It has evolved into a system in which anyone can easily enjoy exhilarating battles. In this completely new battle system, Ichiban Kasuga and his party will fight by selecting techniques with various effects such as attack, recovery, support, and more. Enjoy immersive and dynamic battles against all sorts of enemies.”
Amusingly, Sega actually released a video showing off the turn-based combat system months ago, but everybody thought it was an April Fools joke. Although it was clearly definitely not a joke, I’m pretty sure that most players will still be wishing that it was.
Yakuza 7 will release in Japan on Thursday 16th January 2020, with a Western release coming later next year.