The Let's Play Archive

Ryuu ga Gotoku: Kenzan

by Egomaniac


There are only a few more bits of training to finish, some in this chapter and some in the last, so I'm going to cover all of these right now in hybrid format. For this update, anything shown in video will not have accompanying screenshots. While you may or may not be interested in watching Kiryuu fling ninja stars at cardboard bears in the Jiraiya training, I recommend you read the Komaki section in particular and watch the associated videos.

Let's begin with our final exercises at Kouetsu's.

We finished all the dummies last time, but there are two Jiraiya courses left, both available in Chapter 11.

The video includes both courses. Kouetsu doesn't have much to say about our successful completion, as usual.

Course 1 ("Emptiness") gives us the tachi [Muramasa].
Course 2 ("Ultimate") gives us the tachi [Masamune].

Both of these are famous in some circles in the west because of JRPGs, which love to include swords of the same name.

The first is named after the swordsmith Muramasa Sengo, based in Ise in the 16th century. He actually ran a school that produced a great many swords, so not all bearing his name were necessarily his own personal handiwork. The latter is named for Masamune Gorou, who lived and worked in the 13th century and is probably the most famous smith in Japanese history. He created countless swords and passed his techniques on to many students. In-game, only the Masamune has a partner kodachi, which we earned from the dummy training in Chapter 10, so I'll be showing the set in action in the future.

With that, we're ready for more dual sword training.

The Man in the Tengu Mask has two final techniques to offer, one in Chapter 11 and one in Chapter 12. As before, we need to buy a few things at Sanjuusangendou to pick up his masks before he'll teach us. Also as before, he makes sure Kiryuu's really, really sure he knows he could be killed for learning these skills.

In this first fight we learn a move that won't see much use in huge group battles but cleans up in one-on-one fights (like the tournaments). The game names it the [Dual Sword Style - Instant Slash]. It's a reversal used by pressing TRIANGLE when an enemy makes a weak strike. If you screw up the timing and take a hit you can always recover by pressing block and following up with the other counter we learned last time instead. The beauty of this move is enemy chains are interrupted so it can't usually be locked down like the earlier counter.

In order to get the final move we'll need to wait until Chapter 12, buy the last tengu mask, make sure it's evening, and come back here again.

This is a tougher fight than the others by far, but it's a lot of fun. By this point we know all of the possible techniques in the game and so does our opponent, so it's a good battle. This wasn't my best attempt, but it was the most interesting one where I managed to use a variety of moves and not screw up the QTE. By the way, when the Tengu Man gets that orange flame around him he's invincible and un-stunnable, and the only way to finish the fight is to succeed at the QTE. At least it helps tell him apart from his clones.

What we learn here is called the [Dual Sword Style - Tengu Step]. It's simply sway canceling, and it works with all sword styles, despite the name. The only downside is it drains a bit of HEAT every time you use it, but you can still do the Tengu Step even if your meter is empty.

Now for what would chronologically be the very last technique you can earn in the game, since you can only attempt it just before the final battle: the last melon-cutting.

It's not actually much harder to get than the all-purpose dual sword one we used against Majima was. And of course I won't show the demo in the video since I'll be saving that for the final stretch of the game.

As with the Tengu Man, En no Ozuma doesn't have anything particularly interesting to say after we finish all his training. However, until we pass the point of no return Kiryuu can continue running through any of his six courses for prizes. This final one yields a crafting item you'll want multiple copies of for your second playthrough, so it's good to farm it during the short window you have.

Now on to today's final segment.

Komaki has only one more entry on his list: Gion Unarmed Style Exam 4

The final exam, is it? Are you sure?


Excellent work! You passed the test. Now I will teach you a new technique. It has no name and is described in no manual. Once you see it its name should come naturally to you. Here we go.

Kiryuu calls it the [Shot Stopper]. This move first appeared in Yakuza 2 and works whenever Kiryuu is near an enemy carrying a firearm. Unfortunately, by the time we get this there are no more gun-wielding enemies in the game except after the point of no return - unless you didn't do one of the bounties who carries a matchlock yet. We beat all of them, however, so you'll have to wait until the very end of the game to see this in action.

So that's what you decided to call it. More fighters are carrying these kinds of weapons nowadays, so I developed this technique to counter them. It won't come in useful for every fight, but at the right time in can be invaluable. Now it belongs to you. Do with it what you will. I ask only that you do not pass it on to those who would use it for evil. Now get out there and put it to good use!

Received [Gion Unarmed Style - Shot Stopper Guide].

Learned [Gion Unarmed Style - Shot Stopper].

So now we leave, since we've completed all of Komaki's offerings. However, there's still one more thing to learn, which requires us to visit him once more.

Ah, my favorite pupil! How is the kakemawari life? Have you been beating up a lot of thugs?

Something like that.

He has only one option left on his menu: "Talk about the world." It's been there from the beginning, but doesn't trigger anything until all the other skills are completed.

You've finally learned all of the techniques.

Yeah, but you've got to have some others. Don't hold out on me.

Hmm... Before we discuss that, there's something I want to ask you.

Why are you being so formal? Whatever. What is it?

Then I'll get right to the point. You're really a swordsman, aren't you?

We get a few choices:

1. That's right.
2. I'm just a kakemawari
3. Say nothing

Honesty is the best policy.

That's right. My real name is Miya-

Stop! You don't need to tell me that much. Your true profession is enough. What I ask I want you to answer as a swordsman.

As I told you before, I used to run a dojo in Kawachi. Do you remember?


And I explained that I had three reasons for moving my school here. Do you remember those as well?

You said that your students in Kawachi weren't interested in unarmed fighting, and that you thought kakemawari would appreciate your style more. The other.... hmm....

Yes, I never told you the third reason. In Kawachi Province there was a highly skilled warrior. He had a unique style using a single katana, and it was said he was powerful enough even to defeat a demon.

You mean an oni-killer?

That's right. The "Oni-Killing Style" - [Zanki]. That was what he called his technique.


So you know him. As a swordsman I suppose that's to be expected. I followed him to Kyoto.


Revenge! I came to kill him!

But Shibusawa doesn't seem capable of doing anything really terrible.

He did to me, and I'll never forgive him! That bastard killed nearly all of my students, and then stole my books of secret techniques!


He was my student once.


But he cast aside the Unarmed Style and took up the sword. Why, I do not know.

So.... Do you know where Shibusawa is now?

Yes. I have just located him. And very soon I will go there.

Why are you telling me this?

Because you seek to become the greatest swordsman in all the land. Shibusawa used to say the same thing. I thought, maybe, you were....


But Shibusawa is an indiscriminate killer. A man like him is no longer human. The moment he became a murderer the path to greatness was forever closed to him, and only the road to Hell awaits.

Life and death lie cheek by jowl. Without respect for others no man can become great. That is the lesson I wanted to convey.

I see.

Well, it's time for me to close this dojo. Keep up your hard work. I'm sure there are still many things for a kakemawari to do.

I will.

If we try to get back in any time after this the door is locked.

(He must have gone to get his revenge on Shibusawa. They're both powerful men. I'm sure it will be an incredible duel. Maybe I'll go to the Zanki Dojo and check it out.)

And that's it for Chapter 11. The Zanki Dojo is also locked up tight. However, if we come back in Chapter 12....

There seems to be a gathering outside.

Hey, what are you doing out here?

Oh, you're Kiryuu, aren't you? Master Shibusawa's gone.

(Did Komaki already get to him?)

Do you know where he went?

He left a letter.

"Effective today, the Zanki Dojo will be closed. All of you will receive certificates. They have already been prepared, so please take your own from the stack." That's all it says.

That's it?

Yeah. And something else is pretty strange too.


The part for the teacher's name is signed [Shibusawa Zankisai].

Remember that back when we first met Shibusawa in Chapter 6 he explained how he had two different readings for the name [Zanki]. One, the pair of kanji used in the dojo's official name, means "shame", while the other meant "oni-killing". The student here is pointing out that Shibusawa signed his letter using the latter kanji, while he previously used the former.


You think he made a mistake? He was always so fixated on shame before.

I have no idea. But I'm going to ask him directly. You all split up and search Rakugai for him. Check open areas without a lot of people around.

Huh? Yeah, okay.

I'll look around outside of town. It's dark now, so watch out for bandits.

Heh, don't worry about that. We're Zanki Style disciples! No thug's going to beat us!

You're right. Still, be careful out there.

Yes, sir.

They run off, but a woman shows up after them.

Um, Kiryuu-san?

What is it? It's not safe for a woman to be out alone at this time of night. You should wait inside.

But I know where Shibusawa-san went.


[Sanjuusangendou]. It's just past the mountain pass where all the beautiful fall leaves are dropping.

Alright, I got it. But why didn't he tell the others?

I happened to see him when I passed by that way. He looked like he was carrying a tremendous burden. At any rate, it was clear something was bothering him, so I called out to him.

What did he say?

He said not to tell the others. But.... that it was alright to tell his top student, Kiryuu-san. That he had something to say to you.

He did? Okay. I'm going. When I find out what he has to say I'll let you know.

Th-thank you. Please.... help Shibusawa-san!

! ! I'll do what I can.

We're on our own to reach Sanjuusangendou. It doesn't matter which way we go, either the Mountain Road or the Cliffside Road will do.

This scene greets Kiryuu when he arrives:

It's been a long time, Shibusawa.

Yes it has.... Komaki Souzaemon-dono.

There are so many things I want to ask you, but I'll settle for a single answer. Why did you cast aside the Unarmed Style, take up the sword, and kill your fellow students?

Because without the sword there was no way to make a name for myself. There was no way to earn money. And the more of a demon I became, the greater my fame grew.

The Yagyuu and the Yoshioka.... They too had their wild days and those are what built their reputations. There was no room for feelings or conscience when my sword was in my hands. That's why I killed those students.

Truly? Then why did you name your school the [Zanki Dojo]?


That word means "great shame". Are you sure you don't feel any guilt over what you did?

That's ridiculous. "Zanki" just means.... that I cut down my opponents as remorselessly as a demon!

Enough talk! I'm the master now. I've built up the [Zanki Style] with my own two hands and now I'll use it to send you to Hell!

Then I have no choice. Come!

(You probably ought to watch this.)

G-g'yahh.... You're.... you're as tough as ever, Komaki Souzaemon.... You beat me so easily....

Don't die, Shibusawa! You can still mend your ways!

No.... No, that technique is a sure kill. It pierced my.... my vital organs..... I should know. I read your manuals....


My master, Komaki.... And Kiryuu.... Listen to me....


I wanted to be like.... Yagyuu Sekishuusai. To build a great house at the tip of a sword.... make a name for myself.... Be known as the greatest swordsman in the land. I wanted to be someone who inspired others....

That's why I gave up the Unarmed Style. Why I became a demon. To test my mettle. After that I fled to Kyoto. But every night I was.... haunted by my dreams. I saw the faces of the friends I killed. I saw your face, Master Komaki.... I was always so tired, no matter how hard I trained or how often I slept....


It was my heart that was tired. The nightmares never stopped. So one day I thought.... that I could wipe away my sins by working hard for the people around me. On that day I decided the name of my dojo. "Shame" was a fitting title for a school that would teach men.... how to wield their swords to help others....

It's just like you said. I chose "zanki" out of remorse for what I'd done.


Using the sword to help people.... Kiryuu.... It was you, and the students who followed me, who made my name known throughout Kyoto. But still, the nightmares continued.... Why wouldn't they stop...? Master Komaki, when your letter of challenge arrived I got my answer

It was because I myself hadn't really done anything for other people. Teaching swordsmanship was for myself. I'd just been trying to escape. I was afraid of you, Master Komaki.... Afraid of staying in your shadow. I wanted to be the greatest swordsman who ever lived, but I realized all I'd been doing.... was running away. I hadn't changed at all. And the past caught up with me.

Shibusawa.... Did you let me defeat you?

I was thinking only of staying strong and facing you. Your technique was more powerful than I'd ever imagined.... Nothing more. You truly are the master.

Shibusawa-san.... Why did you sign your students' certificates as [Zankisai]?

Once you tell everyone the truth about me those certificates.... will be worthless. I know it.... And every student will.... throw them away. That's why I did it.

Did you really think so?


You're right that you were a murderer and a monster in the days before you came to Kyoto. But the Shibusawa who taught the Way of the Sword is not the same man. Don't you know how much you and the lessons you taught mean to people? Right now your students are running all over the capital looking for you, tightly clutching the certificates you gave to them. You couldn't ask for any greater proof of their pride and love for you.

I won't tell your students about your past, Shibusawa. You will always be remembered as their beloved teacher, and a great man.

Ah.... Thank you both. I don't deserve.... your kindness....

*cough* It's getting hard to.... see.... It's time.... for me to.... go....

I will be joining you before much longer. Be well until we meet again.

Farewell. Farewell.... Musashi.

Is the memorial service finished?

Yes. It was a beautiful ceremony.

With over a hundred students gathered to wish him farewell it was quite the send-off.

Kiryuu.... Rather than striving to become the greatest in the world, perhaps it's better to die like this, surrounded by people who care about you. Don't you think?


Ah, well, you're still young. You have your whole life to think about it.

Anyway, it's time I was closing the dojo.

....? If you close it what will you do next?

I'll be going to Edo soon.


The handful of my old students who weren't killed by Shibusawa are there. They're still beginners, so I'll help them continue their training.

I see. You need to look out for them.

Yes So, take care.

Oh, that's right. Before I leave I thought I might pay a visit to the Houzouin in Nara. I hear the tournaments they have are quite the spectacle.... I may have to join in myself.

Heh. At your age?

What was that? I'm as fit as I ever was! If you show up for a match you'll find out just how much. You've never seen anything like it in your life!

Okay! I believe you.

Well then, until we meet again. I'm looking forward to it.

Learned [Gion Unarmed Style - Swordless Reversal].

[Used when you find yourself in an unfortunate predicament.]

That's kind of vague.

And that's the end of all of Kenzan's training. We have now mastered 60/60 techniques.

The mailman cometh!

And he delivers a special letter:

The best sword in the game: the [Peerless Tachi]. (A more literal translation would be, seriously, "The Best Tachi". But that's lame.) This one has a partner, the [Peerless Kodachi], which comes from completing all the sidequests. The thing is, the secret boss himself is actually the final sidequest, and you can't fight him until you've finished all the others, all the kakemawari jobs, all the bounties, all the training, and 100%-ed the tournaments. So that kodachi will probably be the final reward we get.

Kiryuu has now mastered every technique available to him in Kenzan, but there are still two chapters left to go. Next time, we'll learn the answers to a number of questions that have been left open since the very beginning of the game.