As part of ongoing coverage at Tokyo Game Show, RGG Studio has confirmed that freshly announced remake Like a Dragon: Ishin! will not have an English voiceover option — it'll just be sticking with subtitles. The developer has greenlit English dubs for its most recent games — Judgment, Lost Judgment, and Yakuza: Like a Dragon — so this news does come as a bit of a surprise.
It's not just RGG Studio being lazy, though. As reported by The Tojo Dojo, the developer says that an English dub would be particularly difficult for Ishin!. "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," producer Yokoyama explains.
With the way Yokoyama words this, it does sound as though future Like a Dragon games will still be considered for English voiceovers — it's just that Ishin! is a special case. We would be shocked, for example, if Like a Dragon 8 doesn't have a dub option.
Are you bothered by the lack of an English dub? Start reading those subtitles in the comments section below.
Cool! I haven’t played any of these games yet, but I plan to soon. Do any of them have English dubs? Is the consensus that it’s best to play in Japanese with subs?
I couldn’t even contemplate playing any of these games with a dub. They’re so steeped in Japanese culture with such specific terminology that I just don’t think English can do them justice. It’s already a struggle to capture honorifics with subtitles never mind dubs.
Not a good move, in my opinion. It is very difficult to read subtitles and focus on the action at the same time. It really ends up being one or the other, and I've lost count of the times where, for example, I've been watching a film and had to rewind it because I either missed the action because I was reading, or missed what was said because I was focussing on the action. Focussing on the gameplay is often far more important in games, as you are an active participant, than in films, where you are not, so I think this could end up hurting sales. Not having spoken English limits the market, as many people simply don't like subtitles...
@Shstrick Generally speaking I much prefer playing with subs over dubs in Yakuza games, but the dubs in the most recent releases are actually of a very high quality. Certainly no harm in trying them for yourself.
There are English dub options in Judgment, Lost Judgment, and Yakuza: Like a Dragon. All the previous games are Japanese voices only.
Ive never played a Yakuza title with the English dub. Always go for the authentic experience with subs
Ugggh. Might not get it then. Unless it has rave reviews.
Fine by me. I would never choose to play a Japanese game like this with an English dub. You usually miss out on so many little details and characteristics. The recent dubs have been much better but there is no substitution for the written subs imo (if you can't speak/understand Japanese that is).
I can understand why some don't like subtitles but you honestly get a lot more of the experience with them.
@Shstrick the dubs are great
That’s completely fine by me, although I do generally play these with the English dub. Can’t wait to start this and my journey to plat.
Before I played Like a Dragon 0(still getting used to the name!), I used to never engage in anything not dubbed. But after playing that and the rest of the series my tolerance for subs grew. Now I generally go with dub if it's available but I'm fine with subs too if that's all that's available or the dub isn't well done.
I don't play any Japanese games with subs if I can avoid it, especially ones that are steeped in the culture.
There are some games with great dubs, like Persona. If that's the case I'm cool with either.
I'm not a big fan of the dubs for LAD games, I still prefer the original voices with subs. Everyone talking with an American accent is really off-putting to me. It's a shame for people who struggle with subtitles however but at least it's just going to be this game from the sounds of it.
@ShogunRok thanks! I’m going to start with Kiwami and there’s no way I could start in one language and switch to another. I’ve tried it with anime and it just breaks my brain, so it sounds like I’m going with subs!
@Gloamin Some people have disabilities such as dyslexia that make constantly reading subtitles difficult, but on the opposite spectrum we have lazy people who can't be bothered in which case I hope you and other people join me and point our fingers and laugh at them. 🤣
@RudeAnimat0r I agree on the sentiment about Persona 5 and for JRPGs in general, Yakuza is the exclusion to the rule for me as I believe you should only play in Japanese because of the realism, but for Persona 5 I go with english because A. The voice acting is great and B. why do I care about Japanese authenticity for voice acting in a 150 hour game where I'm battling giant penis monsters riding a horse carriage 🤔😂🤣
I don't mind. It's not like I'm gonna play freaking Yakuza Ishin! with dub anyways.
Playing a Yakuza game with dubs just feels wrong to me lol.
I think my brain has been wired to playing with subs in the series for so long I can't switch. Besides, I like recognizing the voice actors just by their voices throughout the series.
Sad for accessibility purposes.
But playing these games dubbed is kinda weird as is tbh
I'm normally not one of those "subs over dubs" people, and I play Atlus games with the English dubs and enjoy it all the more for it. But for the Yakuza series and GoT, it's subs all the way. You just can't do a game set in actual Japan and have the language not be Japan. At least for GoT everyone at least has a Japanese accent. For Yakuza LAD, it's just a bunch of American guys and it's oh so wrong. Not only that but the voice direction is questionable. The lead VA isn't exactly bad, but the role is played so straight, dry, and serious like a normal western game. Who directed that? The Japanese VA is a zany off the rails take on the role. It doesn't even come across as the same character and misses the whole silly-but-serious feel of the Yakuza series. A different language shouldn't change the whole tone of the character!
I couldn't imagine playing this game with dubs anyways. Even though I tried the English dub in like a dragon a bit to see how it was, I still play it with subs anyways. It does help not a native English speaker anyways so am used to subs.
That’s a shame, as I typically prefer dubs if I can help it. I do see their reasoning though.
im ok with that cant have it in films never watched pans Labyrinth because of no dubbed version. but these games i can just a bloke or 2 waffling away no wondrous wee monsters to see lol
@GorosBat Yeah I feel for those with reading difficulties in this situation - a few of my friends have dyslexia and struggle a lot. Personally I'm all for subtitles when I'm gaming or watching films but this does suck for accessibility and it's always better for consumers to have more options.
Although if someone is capable of reading subtitles I'd always recommend them!
I think this has far less to do with authenticity and far more to do with a half baked re release of an old title that never released in English speaking countries. And thus they don't want to invest in creating a dub as that hurts the bottom line.
I only play these games subbed but I reckon dubbed can be a good accessibility feature for some disabilities. I'm not the developer though so not up to me haha.
Maybe it's just me but I find it hilarious hearing their real Japanese voices. Dunno why it sounds funny it just is
I don't mind no English dub as I'm used to older titles being this way but it is a suprise that they didn't bother this time, they put the effort in recent games but why now? Maybe the theme of the game wouldn't suit English dub or something?
@Fiendish-Beaver that is my only gripe with Japanese and subtitles but over time I've learned a few words which makes it slightly easier to see the action on screen without having to see the context in the subtitles but it does get fustrating for more tense scenes when they speak so fast to understand what are saying, it's a double edge sword with just Japanese language, putting English dub makes the experience more easier but like I said before I'm used to older titles so it shouldn't be so bad to get used to it
@Beerheadgamer82 I agree, Kiryu in English Vs Japanese version very different for both lol, Daigo is the most dramatic in Japanese tho 😂😂
No other way to play but in Japanese! 😁
Playing games without an English dub is frustrating, but its not as bad as trying to watch anime and read as fast as possible. I grew up playing games before anything was voiced, so its not foreign to me. Still, I would STRONGLY prefer an English version of any game.
What? Yakuza games have dub? Jesus I would die without knowing
Always played these with subs. I even tried to play GoT with Japanese language and subs but it had the opposite problem of old anime: the character's lips speaking English with Japanese audio lol
TBH. Anybody upset by this is probably new to the franchise and is part of a minority. Hard-core fan and long time fans aren't going to lose any sleep over this.
The english dub in Like A Dragon 7 was really poor. It never struck me as something that the producers put much care in getting right. There's always this noticeable style of voice work when english speaking actors speak in Japanese games which is really off putting.
I would have expected to agree with you, but I tried them out recently in Like a Dragon, and they're surprisingly great! I'll likely be sticking with them going forward. It's kind of nice not to have to play close attention to the subtitles.
I personally find English dubs to usually be awful. I think that's why I've only recently started to watch some anime over the last few years. I'd check one out on tv as a kid and it sounded corny as hell.
The english dubbing is terrible in these games(Especially in Judgement) so it doesn't bother me one bit.
The developer's reason makes no sense considering they are going to write down those sentences which would still "make the lines incredibly long", which makes them seem lazy.
@OM1993 only Japanese..... Or English.
The first 6 games only had Japanese Sub so not an issue. I couldn't even imagine playing these games with english dub.
Kiryu in English?!
People use english dubs in yakuza games? Gross.
@DorkyDeviant Meant it as in (in my humble opinion) playing in Japanese is the definitive experience
@sonicmeerkat Those games are cheesy as fcuk of course
Well I’ll be zoning out half the time then.
@DorkyDeviant It makes complete sense actually, as this game was never designed with an english dub in mind. That's only been the case since Judgment and Like A Dragon/Yakuza 7.
This game would be very difficult to dub in English and get the nuances of the conversation right, seeing as the form of Japanese that was used during the time period that Ishin was set in was quite different to modern Japanese.
Also Kiryu with a English dub just sounds horrific.
SEGA/Atlus have a good recent track record with English dub - Persona 5, Catherine Full Body, Persona 5 Strikers, YLAD, Lost Judgment Series so I have gotten into the habit of English subs. I prefer games without subtitles where possible esp action games. I can understand Japanese having lived there for a number of years and some games (Like Sakura Wars) were a bit ropey on translation but most Sega games are pretty good. I guess this was a fairly cheap remaster (Like Persona 3-5 on new consoles). No real investment in animation or audio work just upscaling textures and fps).
I do personally believe in choice. I wouldn't gatekeep my Japanese friends from playing GTA 5 in Japanese because the origin language and cultual meanings are American English. I would expect some commentors to be a little more open minded about languages in games.
English dub? More like IRISH PUB! Am I right?
@ShogunRok I can understand why its probably not cheap to rerecord everything sometimes im just happy to play games with subs.
Thats how i learned english through subs so its good for the kids.
@IndoorEnthusiast @Fiendish-Beaver @Unlucky13 @PepperMintRex @CapGod I also prefer playing games (or watching anime) with English audio/voices, but am okay with subs if there's no other option.
Shame about there not being a dub for this game, but I'll still eventually buy it and play thru to story completion.
@Acurisur yeah I agree with you, they are lazy
@OM1993 not really
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