A recent interview with Like a Dragon: Ishin! producer Masayoshi Yokoyama has confirmed that the upcoming Western release of the game will not include an English dub, unlike Judgment, Lost Judgment, and Like a Dragon.
Yokoyama: “In our recent games we’ve been auditioning local voice actors that have similar voices to the original Japanese actors and hiring them to do voice overs. Starting with Yakuza 7 we’ve even been able to change the characters facial movement so they’re moving along with the English dialogue.
It’s different than a foreign film dub. We fix their mouths so that they look like they’re properly speaking English. That’s where we’re at now. You can do that kind of thing with CG so in that way it’s actually better than live action. After we’ve changed the language to English we can change the characters faces to fit that as well. Japanese people are used to reading subtitles because we watch lots of Hollywood movies.”
Host: “Foreigners aren’t used to reading subtitles?”
Yokoyama: “No they don’t really watch subtitled content. Especially in English speaking countries. That’s why they prefer to have voice overs. However, we didn’t do voice overs for Yakuza 0. It was subtitled. And despite that it was very popular. The fans overseas who’ve been playing since that era still play the games like that even now. In Japanese with English subtitles.
They like Nakano and Kuroda’s voices so they want to hear their voices while they play. You can change it in the settings. There are a lot of people who play with the settings on Japanese voices and English subtitles. For the Ishin remake we’re using subtitles. We’re not dubbing voice overs.
We’re translating the game into English, but the specialized vocabulary and the way people talked during the Bakumatsu era would make the lines incredibly long so it just wouldn’t work. So this time we’re doing subtitles.”
You can listen to the interview initially housing this information below:
Like a Dragon: Ishin! is releasing for PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox One, and PC via Windows and Steam in February 2023. This title was formerly Japan-only.
Like a Dragon 8 was recently announced for PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S, and PC via Steam. This turn-based entry will focus on protagonists Ichiban and Kiryu following Yakuza: Like a Dragon. A 2024 release is planned.
Like a Dragon Gaiden: The Man Who Erased His Name was recently announced for PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S, and PC via Steam. Releasing in 2023, this action title will focus on the series’ former protagonist, Kazuma Kiryu, following the end of Yakuza 6: The Song of Life. It will also detail his journey up to his appearance in Like a Dragon 8.
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