Yakuza 7 (aka Yakuza: Like A Dragon) is switching over to turn-based combat, which is a big change for the series – but it’ll still feel a bit like combat in previous Yakuza games.
The game, which was announced last week, follows new protagonist Ichiban Kasuga and shakes up the series with a whole new combat system. But while you’re no longer directly throwing the punches and kicks, the new turn-based system will inherit plenty from earlier games in the series.
The system is called ‘Live Command RPG Battle’, and while it’s turn-based, the fight is “constantly in motion”, with characters moving around and the city continuing on around the battle. The fight will start from wherever you’re standing, rather than transitioning into a separate battle screen, and placement matters – it might be that you’re close to objects you can use to pummel your opponents, or that enemies spring up from nearby for a sneak attack.
Everyone keeps moving during the battle, and if you or your opponents bump into objects within the game world, they’ll fall over. Turn order is based on stats, and if you try to run up to an enemy that’s far away on your turn, odds are that a closer enemy will step in and interrupt that attack, so you’ll have to be strategic. You can also attack multiple enemies at once if they’re bunched up. You can even get hit by a car mid-battle if you get knocked into the road by an enemy attack.
There will be the option to augment some attacks with timed button presses, although there’s also an ‘auto’ option for people who don’t want to deal with that.
Yakuza 7 releases on PS4 in Japan on January 16, 2020; we’re expecting a western release later that year.