Review: Like A Dragon Ishin! explained to parents

Like a dragon ishin featured ecran partage

What parents need to know

Like A Dragon Ishin! is a spin-off of the series Like A Dragon (formerly Yakuza) in which we play Ryoma Sakamoto, a historical figure of Japan at the end of the 19th century, as he searches for his master’s assassin, risking to upset the future of Japan in the process.

The concept of Like A Dragon Ishin! is unique; if it tells real historical events (in a very fictionalized and exaggerated way, however), the roles of the real historical figures are “camped” by characters from the Like A Dragon/Yakuza franchise. For example, it is Kazuma Kiryu, the protagonist of the majority of the episodes of the franchise, who “embodies” Ryoma.

Most of the time, you face enemies in battle using one of your four fighting styles: hand-to-hand, sword, firearm, and firearm/sword combo. But as in all episodes of the franchise, the interest lies in the many mini-games that enhance the game sessions. Again, they are varied: there are the classic casino and karaoke games, but new mini-games such as the drinking game with an escort and service in a restaurant are added to the list.

There are ways to replay at a higher level of difficulty, and players who really want to complete everything will have dozens or even hundreds of hours. But since this is a linear story, there’s not much replayability.

Like A Dragon Ishin! is a remake of a title released in 2014 on PlayStation 3 and 4, but which has never left the shores of Japan.

Details

Release date: 21 February 2023
Developer: Ryu Ga Gotoku Studio
Publisher: Sega
Available on: Steam PC, Compatible Steam Deck, Playstation 4, Playstation 5, Xbox One, Xbox Series
Available format: Physical and digital
Version tested: Xbox Series

Game genre: Action
Themes covered: Japan, politics, samurai
Duration of a game: 1h
Duration of the main game/story: 45h
Total time to complete everything: 100h

Text languages: German, English, Simplified chinese, Traditional chinese, Korean, Spanish, French, Italian, Japanese,
Voice languages: Japanese,

Number of local players: 1

Level of experience required

Age 3+ 7+ 12+ 16+ 18+
Beginners
Intermediate
Experienced

Evaluation

Like A Dragon Ishin! features a samurai and does not hesitate to stage bloody fights. Without the violence being hyper detailed or realistic, we do not hesitate to show us our hero open the belly of his enemies with his katana.

In short, the level of violence prevents us from recommending this title to the youngest.

Horror is not usually one of the springs used by Like A Dragon Ishin!

Horror is not usually one of the springs used by Like A Dragon Ishin!

Without there being graphic nudity, many sexual themes are addressed throughout the adventure. There is even a mini-game that invites us to go to a brothel to spend a “pleasant” evening with a courtesan.

In short, the sexual themes are numerous, and there is the presence of scantily clad men and women.

You absolutely have to know how to read in order to enjoy Like A Dragon Ishin!

Many concepts essential to progression are explained only in writing. In addition, the dubbing is only available in Japanese, which requires us to read the subtitles to understand the story.

The title also contains a huge amount of dialogue offered for writing only.

There are many more vulgar and familiar terms during the adventure.

There is also a large amount of vocabulary specialized in Japanese or specific to Japan. A glossary helps understanding, but the vocabulary remains difficult to approach.

There are many more vulgar and familiar terms during the adventure. There is also a large amount of vocabulary specialized in Japanese or specific to Japan. A glossary helps understanding, but the vocabulary remains difficult to approach.

In the end, the protagonists of the franchise often defend the same themes: loyalty, authenticity, justice. That is the case here.

But we also present a complex political history where nothing is black or white.

Like A Dragon! does not particularly stand out for its difficulty. The game offers several levels of difficulty in order to adapt to the level of the players. It is also possible to fight repeatedly against enemies in order to level up our character and make mandatory confrontations easier.

On the other hand, players looking for a higher challenge will be satisfied with the tougher difficulty modes.

The title requires a high level of execution to the controller. The action is fast, and special attacks require you to press a button in a very short period of time.

Some mini-games, especially dance, cooking and karaoke, require you to press certain buttons with a precise timing or to press multiple times on the same button very quickly.

Fortunately, Like a Dragon Ishin! offers many accessibility options for players who are less accustomed to action games or struggle with motor limitations. Games that require pressing certain buttons with a precise timing can be completed automatically, we can ask the games to perform certain actions automatically and we can also activate an option that makes our character automatically approach the enemies to attack.

The title requires a high level of execution to the controller. The action is fast, and special attacks require you to press a button in a very short period of time. Some mini-games, especially dance, cooking and karaoke, require you to press certain buttons with a precise timing or to press multiple times on the same button very quickly. Fortunately, Like a Dragon Ishin! offers many accessibility options for players who are less accustomed to action games or struggle with motor limitations. Games that require pressing certain buttons with a precise timing can be completed automatically, we can ask the games to perform certain actions automatically and we can also activate an option that makes our character automatically approach the enemies to attack.

On achète le jeu une fois; des contenus téléchargeables payants sont offerts.

A lot of content can be bought. We mostly talk about cosmetic elements, but many elements to accelerate progress are also offered, which will slow down the progress of those who refuse to put their hands in their pockets.

Fortunately, the content offered is rather optional, and those who do without it are not likely to see their pleasure too affected.

Local game modes

There is a story mode to complete solo.

Online Game Modes

No online game modes.

Expansions/Add-ons (DLC)

Several downloadable contents are available, free and paid, ranging from additional weapons to additional costumes, as well as materials to forge new weapons.

Our opinion

Like A Dragon Ishin! is a worthy representative of the franchise, for better or for worse. Fans of the series are in for a treat; we find in Like A Dragon Ishin! The variety of mini-games and humor unique to the franchise. In addition, the new fighting styles are pleasant to handle, and the city of Kyo is fascinating to explore, giving us the impression of making a foray into Japan at the end of its feudal era. It almost feels like learning, between a karaoke song and a hand-to-hand fight against a tiger.

On the other hand, those who do not appreciate the series will not be charmed by this new episode, since it largely uses the same formula. And those who would like to learn about the franchise may prefer another episode (we suggest Yakuza 0 to start). First, Like A Dragon Ishin! is full of very Japanese vocabulary and historical concepts. The game offers us a glossary to help us keep up, but if you’re not already interested in Japan, it can be difficult to approach.

But above all, one of the attractions of this episode is to find the characters of the 9 episodes of the regular series in new roles. However, this effect will be completely wasted on those who try the series for the first time.

In short, fans of the series will enjoy this new episode. For others, perhaps it is better to start with another episode that is easier to approach.

Our rating : 16 / 20

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