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All Yakuza Games in Chronological Order

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Yakuza Chronological Order

Originally released in 2006, Yakuza gained a dedicated following in North America and Europe. While the franchise wouldn’t see a sudden explosion in popularity following the release of Yakuza 0 in 2015, the series received numerous entries. This has included mainline titles, spin-off games, with some set in alternate universes. And with the franchise rebranding in North America and Europe to keep in line with its Japanese counterpart, it might be a little confusing to people who are looking to get into the franchise.

Yakuza, or Yakuza: Like a Dragon, are in the same series. Known as Ryu ga Gotoku in Japan, that title roughly translates to “Like a Dragon.” However, early localization saw the franchise dubbed Yakuza in North America and Europe, and kept it up until the release of Ryu ga Gotoku 7, or Yakuza: Like a Dragon.

Now Sega is looking to rebrand the franchise with the release of Ryu ga Gotoku Ishin!, or Like a Dragon: Ishin!. Basically, they’re one in the same, with the exception of Yakuza: Like a Dragon featuring an all new protagonist, Kasuga Ichiban, with Yakuza 0 through Yakuza 6 starring Kazuma Kiryu, who is sometimes joined by playable side characters in later titles. But don’t worry, if you’re looking to get into the franchise or play the games in chronological order, we’ve created a list that get you started.

Please keep in mind that this will not include spin-off titles like Yakuza: Kenzan, Like a Dragon: Ishin (Yakuza: Ishin), Yakuza: Dead Souls or the Black Panther: Like a Dragon games.

This is the list of all mainline Yakuza games in chronological order according to release date:

  • Yakuza
  • Yakuza 2
  • Yakuza 3
  • Yakuza 4
  • Yakuza 5
  • Yakuza 0
  • Yakuza Kiwami
  • Yakuza 6
  • Yakuza Kiwami 2
  • Yakuza: Like a Dragon

If you’re looking for all mainline Yakuza games in chronological order in relation to the story, you can find that list below:

  • Yakuza 0
  • Yakuza / Yakuza Kiwami
  • Yakuza 2 / Yakuza Kiwami 2
  • Yakuza 3
  • Yakuza 4
  • Yakuza 5
  • Yakuza 6
  • Yakuza: Like a Dragon

Though it is preferred to play the games in chronological order according to release, including Yakuza Kiwami and Kiwami 2. As while both games are ground-up remasters of the original releases, they include extra story content and in same cases different licensed music. This can create an entirely different experience or understanding of certain characters for players. That said, the original PlayStation 2 releases of Yakuza and Yakuza 2 can be hard to find, and don’t have the same quality of life improvements as their remastered counterparts. Ultimately, what order you choose to play in is up to you! But it’s definitely recommended that you play each game as opposed to reading the synopsis provided in later releases like Yakuza 6, for example, since those tend to sometimes gloss over significant story events.

Kazuma Hashimoto
Translator and streamer, Kazuma spends his time playing a variety of games ranging from farming simulators to classic CRPGs. He also works in PR for UberStrategist.