There’s some thing truly fascinating about The Friends of Ringo Ishikawa. The name alone conjures mystery. Who is Ringo Ishikawa, one must ask, and what’s so important about these friends of his? On top of that, the red background of the title card is eye-catching, as is the art design that showcases a lineup of no-nonsense dudes getting ready to administer a beatdown. It perhaps conjures memories of the Yakuza games, in fact.
Even the trailer has an air of mystery to it, featuring ambient tones and an infectiously satisfying low-fidelity punch sound.
The only way to really get to the bottom of this, I suppose, is to play the thing. Of course, I have a nasty habit of avoiding Switch games that I would probably love because they only ever come out digitally and I refuse to play anything on Nintendo’s handheld that doesn’t come on a cartridge (my Switch cartridge collection is now in the tree-digit range). Thankfully, The Friends of Ishikawa doesn’t need to pass me by now that Limited Run Games just opened up preorders for a physical version of the game.
In grand Limited Run fashion, there are two versions of the game, a standard edition and a collector’s edition.
The standard edition costs $34.99, and it features a lovely case and physical cartridge. The special collector’s edition goes for $64.99, and it adds all the cool stuff listed below:
- 16-page comic
- Super Famicom retro box
- non-functional replica Super Famicom cartridge
- 5 x 7 mini posters
If you want to snag this one before it’s gone, you should act now (here’s a link). Limited Run quite often lives up to their name, meaning a lot of their games library goes out of print very quickly. The out-of-print games often end up on the secondhand market months down the road for frustratingly high prices.
Oh, and while Limited Run typically numbers their games for collectors, they’re only handling distribution for The Friends of Ishikawa, so this isn’t technically a part of their line.