Taking place 3 years after the events of Like A Dragon Gaiden: The Man Who Erased His Name and Yakuza: Like A Dragon, the demo continues from the after-credit scene of Like A Dragon Gaiden. Picking up in Hawaii, Kiryu is seen leaving the ring, he once gave to Yumi Sawamura, in a church, something that he mentioned during the progression of the Like A Dragon Gaiden Story. As he walks away a sudden phone call interrupts his strides, this one event seems to set up the events to come and the fated meeting of Dragons. Here is our Like A Dragon: Infinite Wealth Preview.
Opening up the area on the Like A Dragon Gaiden menu you will be greeted with seemingly the game restarting into Infinite Wealth, complete with a landing screen and its own menu. Here you can pick between Story or Hawaii modes. Both have a Story element to them however the Hawaii mode is a more open-ended free-roam design where you can explore what Hawaii has to offer and get a headstart in learning basics, trying attacks, and generally just having fun until Infinite Wealth Launches on Jan 26th.
The story mode gives some insight as to why both characters, Ichiban and Kiryu, are outside of their normal Japanese setting of Kamurocho/ Ijincho. Revealing that Ichiban is looking for his mother, Akane-san, whom players of Yakuza: Like A Dragon will know that she is meant to be dead, Kiryu is looking for her as well. This gives a rather broad concept as to why both characters are in Hawaii. Firstly Ichiban’s motivation for this act is rather self-explanatory, besides the fact that the truth about his family is never revealed in Y: LAD. Whereas Kiryu is sent by the Daidoji faction for some reason, which he only reveals is to “Detain a Certain Someone”. Although the Demo ends shortly after this, it is fair to assume that the Daidoji faction wouldn’t show an interest in someone without good reason, take the events of Like A Dragon Gaiden for example.
Drastically altered and heavily modified from either the Traditional combat mechanics in the Yakuza Franchise or the turn-based gameplay introduced in Yakuza: Like A Dragon, Infinite Wealth shows off a new and combined combat approach to battle scenarios. While the core of a Turn Based System takes the reins for the majority of the battles, Kiryu, at the least, has been given the ability to have a battle mode called Dragons Resurgence. This mode will let players take control of Kiryu in his traditional battle style and fight without the limitations of targeting individual enemies or the Turn-based system for as long as the Mode is active. The addition of the limit Ring which lets you move and get a better position to attack was a nice feature and at least in Kiryu’s case, he can change between different battle styles to best deal with a situation.
One thing we really want to highlight is the vastness of what you can do in the demo, there are not just minigames to enjoy but eateries, Sub Stories, and of course plenty of enemies looking to pick a fight. We do want to point out you have access to only 2 jobs per character. Ichiban has the Hero job returning, while Kiryu has the Dragon Of Dojima, and over both characters is the Samurai job. In the Hawaii mode, there are also 2 side characters who have their own jobs, Tomizawa has the Cabbie job and Samurai, while your other character, Fujinomiya, has Heiress and Geodancer. While you can’t seem to change them easily, why would you?, they are giving you a glimpse of what you can do with the new Job system introduced in Yakuza: Like A Dragon.
While the game is not all that big in the demo and can be completed in under an hour, the Hawaii mode can feature hours of gameplay. This author found himself playing it for 2-3 hours losing track of time and personally, I can’t wait to get my hand on the full game come January 26th if the demo is anything to go by. While it is only a taster of what Ryu Ga Gotoku has in store for the latest addition to the long-running franchise I personally hope that Kiryu and Ichiban survive to the end, and eventually Kiryu can meet up with the children again.
There is so much more we would like to go into about this demo however, we feel it is best left for personal experience and the full game releasing on Jan 26th.
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