Yakuza: Like a Dragon PS5 PS4

SEGA's now legendary Yakuza/Like a Dragon series almost didn't happen, with the Sonic the Hedgehog publisher initially hesitant to produce something so outside of its family-friendly wheelhouse. That's according to series creator Toshihiro Nagoshi, who said it was a struggle to get the first game off the ground.

In an interview with Weekly Ochiai (translated by Automaton, thanks IGN), Nagoshi revealed that SEGA "flat out rejected" multiple pitches in the early 2000s. It was only through persistence that the original Japanese criminal caper was given the go-ahead in the first place: "This mindset [of appealing to the masses] wasn't really leading to a solution, and I saw many game proposals gradually become watered down as producers bent over to change things the way management instructed them to."

Seeing the opportunity to do something different, Nagoshi said it took three attempts before he could finally convince SEGA management to give him a chance. However, he had to be "quite forceful"; even then, it wasn't approved through traditional routes. Elaborating, he explained: "After all, it was completely contrary to what I mentioned earlier about attracting the masses. Children wouldn't be able to play it, and it wasn't catered to women or overseas audiences. In this sense, there was no way for it to be approved without resistance."

Could you imagine a gaming landscape without the Dragon of Dojima? What about a world without Ichiban? Count your lucky stars in the comments section below.

[source youtu.be, via ign.com]