‘Yakuza’ creator Toshihiro Nagoshi confirms why Kiryu will never appear in a fighting game

The creator of Yakuza has confirmed that Kiryu won’t be debuting in any fighting games because he doesn’t want him beating up women.

The Yakuza series sheds light on the hidden underworld of Japanese society. Despite being criminals, often these characters prove themselves to be more than just street thugs.

With Yakuza: Like a Dragon re-igniting the Yakuza flame, here’s one interesting fact about the previous protagonist, Kazuma Kiryu. The series creator, Toshihiro Nagoshi, has confirmed that Kiryu does not hit women (though he did slap a kid once though) and will not hit women in any third party titles. 


In an interview with Red Bull France, Nagoshi responded to any potential of debuting Kiryu in fighting games. We wouldn’t be the only ones hyped up for such a crossover event with his four different fighting styles and ludicrous attacks, including bicycle and telephone pole swinging action. After all, The Walking Dead and Final Fantasy XIV received DLC fighters in Tekken 7. Kiryu would fit in perfectly.

However, Nagoshi politely declined. Kiryu cannot hit women. 

“We get a lot of requests for that. Of course, there are exceptions, but fighting games usually have female characters, and I personally don’t really want to see Kiryu hit women.”

Many often see the Japanese Yakuza as the modern-era samurai. Their codes of honour and a strong sense of responsibility mean that they have some old-school chivalry in them. Some might see this as a sexist decision – are these female fighters just weaker beings to him? But we must remember that Kiryu isn’t the kind of guy who would raise a hand against a girl. His fists are strictly for vanquishing evil off the streets of Kamurocho.  

Any fans of the Yakuza series should check out Yakuza: Like a Dragon. This spin-off keeps all the usual shenanigans and introduces some turn-based strategy. The new protagonist, Ichiban Kasuga, is just as stubborn and lovable as Kiryu.