Kazuma Kiryu is the main protagonist of the Yakuza franchise, appearing as a playable character in practically every entry in the series. While calling him a criminal is a bit reductive, Kazuma Kiryu is in any case deeply involved in the underworld. Echo is a drone operator that was introduced alongside the breacher Hibana as part of the Operation Red Crow expansion for Rainbow Six Siege back in 2016. Kaoru Sayama appeared in Yakuza 2 and 3 as a police detective.
This comes in the context of an upcoming season for the already seven year old game. Rainbow Six Siege was released on November 26, 2015 to somewhat less than raving reviews, but Ubisoft has been continually improving the game in the meantime. The latest content will be coming out on May 24, 2022.
Ubisoft has already reskinned a variety of different characters in Rainbow Six Siege. These include Lara Croft for Ash, Leon Kennedy for Lion, Rick Sanchez for Doc, and Morty Smith for Fuze. What other crossovers the company has in store for players remains to be seen, but reliable sources have been suggesting that some Nier: Automata content could be dropping in the near future.
While some in the community which has built up around the game are happy to see it being supported after all these years, others have been decrying the slow erosion of its fairly consistent visual style with all of these crossovers. The reception to the addition of Kazuma Kiryu and Kaoru Sayama has on the other hand been extremely positive.
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