Like a Dragon: Infinite Wealth
Like a Dragon Infinite Wealth
Title Like a Dragon: Infinite Wealth
Developer Ryu Ga Gotoku Studio
Publisher Sega
Release Date Jan 25, 2024
Genre RPG
Platform PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S, PC
Age Rating Mature
Official Website

I’ve made little secret about my love of the Yakuza games (and their spin-offs). It’s one of my favorite series, so I was ecstatic to have the chance to review Like a Dragon: Infinite Wealth, the second of Ryu Ga Gotoku Studio’s RPG offerings and a continuation of Ichiban Kasuga’s story. Joined by new friends and in a completely new setting, will this adventure charm me as much as Ichiban’s first?

Infinite Wealth Story

Like a Dragon: Infinite Wealth | Ichiban and Saeko

We pick up three years after the events of Like a Dragon and the Yokohama crew have settled back into society as productive, working adults. Kasuga Ichiban is at Hello Work trying to find jobs for the displaced yakuza following the Great Dissolution of the Tojo Clan and Omi Alliance. Masumi Arakawa’s dream for the yakuza was for them to reintegrate into proper society, and Ichiban has made it his dream to make sure Arakawa’s vision comes to fruition. Yu Nanba found a job working in a medical warehouse, and Koichi Adachi is starting up his own security business. Saeko Mukoda is running her own club. Everything is going well, but it’s about to go downhill fast. Ichiban finally builds up the courage to take Saeko out on a date, and it ends disastrously – so much so that we skip one year into the future and she’s left the poor man on read. Not only that, but a VTuber released a hit piece on Ichiban that went viral, leading to him being canned from Hello Work. Adachi and Nanba get the ax, as well.

Freshly unemployed once again, the gang learn all the ex-yakuza Ichiban spent years trying to help were also targeted by this VTuber. Hisoka Tatara has it out for the yakuza in general and Ichiban in particular, it seems, dedicating multiple live streams to our hero. With nowhere to go, the yakuza turn to the Seiryu Clan in Yokohama, which has been filling its ranks in recent months. Acting captain Masataka Ebina claims he’s recruiting the former yakuza to work at his legitimate waste disposal business as he plans to enact the Second Great Dissolution. To gain legitimacy among veteran yakuza and prove his commitment to Arakawa’s vision, Ebina pulls strings to get Jo Sawashiro out of jail early, drawing in more former Tojo and Omi in the process.

Like a Dragon: Infinite Wealth | Hisoka Tatara

It’s here Sawashiro drops a bombshell: Ichiban’s mother, Akane, is still alive, and she lives in Hawaii. Would Ichiban like to go meet her? Ichiban of course takes Sawashiro up on his offer, though unfortunately his bad luck follows him across the Pacific. Ichiban arrives on American soil and is immediately held up at gunpoint, then drugged and left naked on the beach. He’s arrested for indecent exposure and used as a scapegoat for multiple cold cases, until he escapes and runs into Kazuma Kiryu, who is coincidentally in Hawaii on a job for the Daidoji. The two eventually make their way back to Akane’s house, encounter a local yakuza named Yutaka Yamai – who is also looking for Akane – and make a new friend in Eric Tomizawa, one of Yamai’s men and also the man who held Ichiban up the day before. Ichiban is nothing if not forgiving to a fault, after all. Once the trio are safe, Kiryu then drops the games’s second bombshell: He’s dying of cancer.

So begins Like a Dragon: Infinite Wealth. In true RGG fashion, the game takes tons of twists and turns, bringing together an eclectic cast of misfits in a story that tackles finding a new beginning in life, closure in the life you’ve lived, and atonement for the mistakes you’ve made. The game takes aim at a number of issues, not the least of which include police corruption, overly burdensome and retributive laws, online dogpiling and how easily someone’s life can be destroyed by rumors, religious faith versus zealotry, economic disparity, homelessness, balancing urbanization and environmentalism, and bodily autonomy with regards to illness.

Like a Dragon: Infinite Wealth | Kazuma Kiryu

Ryu Ga Gotoku narratives have always had go big or go home energy, and that’s no different here, for good and for ill. Staging the majority of the story in Hawaii was a big hit, using this new location to explore themes that have been ever-present in this series, but to also highlight unique issues to Hawaii itself, as well as adding an international bent.

Ichiban and the gang from Like a Dragon return, and this time they’ve made some friends. The newest additions to the cast are Eric Tomizawa, a Hawaiian cabby caught up with local gangster Yutaka Yamai; and Chitose Fujinomiya, the daughter of a powerful Japanese magnate who is attending school in Hawaii. Old friends Adachi, Nanba, Zhao and Han Joongi join newly playable Seonhee and the Dragon of Dojima himself to round out the playable cast for this sprawling, dual protagonist story.

Let’s break it down a little more, as unlike previous games in this series, both Ichiban and Kiryu take top billing here. Infinite Wealth is as much a story about the search for Ichiban’s mother as it is closure for Kiryu, and the way the game handles each is at least partially reflected in their supporting casts.

Like a Dragon: Infinite Wealth | Eric Tomizawa

Ichiban’s story takes up the bulk of the game, with the front half devoted entirely to his time in Hawaii. One of the first people he meets is Tomizawa, a down-on-his-luck cabby who holds Ichiban up at gunpoint just hours after our hero touches down on American soil. The son of an Hawaiian native and a Japanese national, Tomizawa straddles two cultures and acts as Ichiban’s liaison and interpreter as one of the few bilingual characters in the game. (This is, unfortunately, an aspect of the game that gets dropped pretty quickly, but I’ll discuss that later.) Chitose is the daughter of a big time Japanese business magnate and has been attending school in Hawaii. Stifled by her upbringing, she’s an interesting civilian foil to the yakuza families of older games. She’s also the most tech savvy of the crew, and ends up helping Ichiban widen the search for his mother by utilizing her ‘Net know-how to gather information. Ichiban’s crew is eventually rounded out by Adachi and Han Joongi, who bring with them familiarity but also new perspectives on life in Hawaii. Having old friends and new mingle was a nice reflection of Ichiban’s relentless optimism and drive to expand his world.

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Kiryu’s party is made up entirely of familiar faces from Like a Dragon (which I’ll also refer to as RGG7), which feels appropriate as his story focuses more on the past. What’s new is who is playable, though. Seonhee joins the fray this time around, stepping out from her web of shadows in the Geomujul to take to the streets alongside her hero. Despite her connections to the underworld, she does not have immediate access to information the way the Florist did in previous games, instead helping Kiryu unravel the mysteries surrounding the Seiryu Clan’s connections with Hawaii and how VTuber Hisoka Tatara plays into everything. Nanba comes along as Kiryu’s physical and mental support, with Saeko and Zhao rounding out the crew. Having Ichiban’s friends pal around with Kiryu gives the cast a chance to discuss Ichiban in ways they could not when he’s present, as well as contrast the differences between both former yakuza – in particular, addressing Kiryu’s insistence on doing everything himself. Ichiban has always been a proponent of the Power of Friendship, and that is on full display here, demonstrating how he’s impacted those around him and how they, in turn, are lending their strength to Kiryu when he needs it the most.


Like a Dragon‘s turn-based combat returns here with some welcome tweaks. The battle system still relies heavily on exploiting weapon type and elemental weaknesses in your enemies, but has now added a free-moving aspect that allows for back attacks and team combos. In RGG7, your characters would run across the field to attack whatever enemy you chose, but you had no free range of movement. In Infinite Wealth, you now have a small area in which you can reposition your characters to either hit enemies on the back for added damage, or line up attacks to shove enemies into your friends for a bonus follow-up attack. You can also position your character near an ally and trigger a combo attack, where both will attack the enemy at once. It’s a small change with a big impact since it introduces some strategy, especially when dealing with enemies who use shields or are otherwise heavily armored. The higher the bond with a character, the more damage these combo attacks will do, and the more often follow-up damage will trigger.

Like a Dragon: Infinite Wealth | Ichiban in battle

Ichiban and Kiryu can also do Tag Team attacks with their crew once they build up their Hype Meter. This is represented by an infinity symbol next to each character’s combat portrait, and the more damage a character takes, the faster the gauge fills. Once it’s fully charged, Ichiban and Kiryu can then “tag” that character to perform a special combo. For instance, Ichiban and Kiryu’s Tag Team is the two of them rushing an enemy and punching them in the face; Tomizawa and his partner hurl wheel wrenches through the air; and Chitose ballroom dances with her partner to hit multiple bad guys in a line attack. Each of them are pretty interesting in their own ways. Ichiban can also use an Ultimate Tag Team that depletes all party member’s gauges but does massive damage to every enemy.

Characters have access to various jobs, which must be bought by taking part in vacation packages at Alo-Happy Tours. Each job can learn skills up through level 30, after which point levels only increase stats. These skills can be “inherited” by other jobs, giving you the opportunity to mix and match and craft your favorite possible job. Do you want your Samurai to also spray bubbly in your enemy’s faces the same way a Host can? Well, now that’s possible. Even ultimate abilities can be inherited, though you only have five total inheritance slots, one of which is for an ultimate ability. You earn inheritance slots as you increase your bond with other characters, and these inheritances will carry over to every subsequent job until you manually change which skills you’re sharing. This ends up being an excellent way to equip characters to exploit the weakness system and ensure you’ve got versatility.

Like a Dragon: Infinite Wealth | Ichiban as a Desperado

Infinite Wealth has a wide assortment of jobs available. Host, Breaker, Chef, Idol, and Night Queen return from RGG7, so I want to focus briefly on the newcomer jobs: Action Star, Aquanaut, Desperado, Pyrodancer, Samurai, Geodancer, Housekeeper, and Kunoichi. Action Star is a heavy damage focused job with mostly single-target skills. Aquanaut is a magic-focused job with a decent mix of ranged attacks and healing. Desperado is a ranged attack job that mixes elemental-based damage between single and group attacks. Pyrodancer is a magic job with an emphasis on support and debuffing. Samurai is a strong physical job with a mix of single target and AOE skills. Geodancer, like Pyrodancer, focuses on magic support and debuffs. Housekeeper has a mix of physical and debuff attacks. And Kunoichi is a strong physical job. Ichiban can also access the Sujimancer job, which lets him call forth Sujimon to perform an assortment of magic-based attacks. Much like in RGG7, your unique jobs tend to be the most well-rounded, though it doesn’t matter as much here since you can mix and match skills with inheritance, so it’s really just going with the aesthetic you like the most. I would say the only exception is Sujimancer, which felt underwhelming even with high-level Sujimon.

As the Dragon of Dojima, Kiryu’s combat comes with its own flourish. He fists are his weapons, and his ability list is a what’s what of classic Komaki-style attacks. He can also access three different fighting stances at will throughout a fight: Brawler, Rush, and Beast. Much like in his own titles, each of these styles comes with its own pros and cons. Brawler is Kiryu’s default stance, and the only one in which he can use Heat Actions. You can also counter enemy attacks if you perfect guard. In Rush mode, Kiryu’s attacks deal less damage, but he has a wider range of motion, and he gets two turns, which makes this ideal for cleaning up low HP enemies or capitalizing on back attacks. Beast mode is Kiryu’s defensive stance, offering an increase in attack power, but at a significant hit to speed and range. While in Beast mode, Kiryu can break enemy guard stances without using special abilities, which makes this style invaluable against large groups of heavy types and enemies with shields.

Like a Dragon Infinite Wealth | Kiryu and Seonhee in battle

When the going gets tough, Kiryu can also dig deep and harness the dragon within, unleashing the full strength of the legendary yakuza by literally breaking free of the game’s turn-based combat to wail on enemies freestyle. Rather than performing a Tag Team attack, by holding R2 when his Hype Meter is full, Kiryu can access Dragon’s Resurgence, giving him free range to pummel any enemy regardless of distance. Once the Resurgence meter runs out, Kiryu will rejoin his teammates in turn-based combat. Deciding between Resurgence and Tag Team can be the difference between winning or losing a battle, and I liked the versatility this offered.

Like every other character in the cast, Kiryu can also use the generic jobs (I quite liked him as a samurai, myself). But the Dragon of Dojima is honestly the strongest job in the game – absurdly so at times – and is a nice gameplay reminder that, despite the events of the story that have Kiryu significantly weaker than during his own standalone titles, he earned his Legendary Yakuza title for a reason.

Like a Dragon: Infinite Wealth | Ichiban status screen with Adachi, Tomizawa and Chitose

Poundmates return with some enhancements this time around. Like in RGG7, you can call in support from a variety of colorful characters, many of whom you unlock through subquests. They range from the hard-hitting Chitose Holmes (not to be confused with Chitose Fujinomiya), to mainstay Nancy and her new friend Olivia, the lead singer of a visual kei band, one half of a manzai group who serves coffee, and even the Bartender from Survive. New this time around is the fact that most Poundmates you obtain will fight alongside you for three turns, rather than one-and-done moves. Those are reserved for the highest level Poundmates, most of which you won’t see until nearing endgame. For instance, Chitose will follow up all of Ichiban’s attacks with her own flurry of furious blows, sticking around the battlefield for three turns until she finally bids farewell. Having this bonus damage or healing can make or break early fights, and was a nice addition to the Poundmates system. The more money you spend on Poundmates, the higher your rank with the service, and once you max out your contributions you can unlock With Benefits options, which double the cost of a Poundmate, but also exponentially increases their base attack power. This addition was indispensable during endgame.

Along with Poundmates, Sujimon return, this time bigger than ever. Rather than just being a glorified bestiary, Sujimon now have an entire mini-game devoted to their capture and subsequent battles. Infinite Wealth makes no real effort to hide the Pokémon influence here, and if you’re at all familiar with those games, capturing Sujimon will feel old hat. After battle, Ichiban has the chance to “recruit” one of his enemies. To do so, you need to offer a gift (think Pokéballs) and then prostrate yourself to demonstrate your resolve. The sincerity of your attempt to woo the enemy is represented by a scale at the bottom of the screen, and the further along you time your button press the better your chances (though I highly recommend checking out the low sincerity). If you’re successful, the Sujimon will join you and can be used by Ichiban’s Sujimancer unique job, or fight in Sujimon Battles. They can also take part in Dondoko Island. I’ll touch on both of these aspects a little later.

Like a Dragon: Infinite Wealth | Ichiban attempting to capture a Sujimon

Read on for Dondoko Island, Sujimon Battles and more! ->

Leah McDonald
Leah's been playing video games since her brother first bought an Atari back in the 1980s and has no plans to stop playing anytime soon. She enjoys almost every genre of game, with some of her favourites being Final Fantasy Tactics, Shadow of the Colossus, Suikoden II and The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past. Leah lives on the East Coast with her husband and son. You can follow Leah over on Twitter @GamingBricaBrac