Yakuza 7 was officially announced for PlayStation 4 during a press conference in Tokyo on Thursday.
The game will launch on January 16, 2020 in Japan, and in 2020 in the West.
Sega chief creative officer and Yakuza creator Toshihiro Nagoshi said the title will be a “watershed” moment for the series, which is introducing an RPG-style turn-based battle system, according to Wall Street Journal reporter Takashi Mochizuki.
However, should fans not welcome the new direction, Nagoshi reportedly said the Yakuza team will happily revert to the franchise’s established action formula.
According to Gematsu, Yakuza 7’s Japanese subtitle loosely translates as Whereabouts of Light and Darkness.
The game stars new protagonist Ichiban Kasuga, who has spent 18 years in prison after taking the fall for crimes committed by his ex-boss. But following his incarceration, rather than welcome Kasuga’s return, his former employer attempts to kill him.
Yakuza 7 takes place in the area of Isezaki Ijincho in Yokohama, which is said to be over three times the size of Kamurocho, the Tokyo-inspired setting of past series entries.
Nagoshi underwent heart surgery just three weeks before Thursday’s Yakuza 7 reveal event.
Sega recently announced Yakuza Remastered Collection, a PS4 bundle featuring Yakuza 3, Yakuza 4 and Yakuza 5.