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Yakuza 6 turns adorable mascots into punching machines, and it’s great

Ono Michio looks cute, but he’s deadly

If you’ve never played a Yakuza game before, you may be surprised that it’s a lot less ... gritty than you may expect. Sure, the series is about as melodramatic as games get — our hero, Kiryu Kazuma, has been through the dramatic paces of love and loss time and time again — and it’s definitely violent. But for every group of bad dudes Kiryu spontaneously fights on the streets of Kamurocho, there’s another group of actors, musicians, hostesses, schoolgirls and any other manner of local looking to him for help.

PlayStation 4 exclusive Yakuza 6: The Song of Life — which Sega recently delayed to April 17 — may feature the most entertaining balance of the two yet. We got to go hands-on with one of the game’s trademark hilarious substories, which is set in a location that’s new to the series. Kiryu, ever the yes man, agrees to sub in as the city of Onomichi’s beloved mascot, Ono Michio-kun. What that means is that our straight-faced gangster swaps out his classy suit for the head of a giant orange with a bowl of ramen on top of it.

It’s endearingly weird, especially toward the end, when Kiryu busts out his fists while still in costume. Watch above to see the entirety of the mission. It’s the best example of the good stuff that makes Yakuza so lovable, despite its tough guy demeanor.

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