Yakuza Kiwami Review

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    Yakuza Kiwami is about Kiryu, fresh out of jail, and all the Yakuza of the Toja clan after him, after protecting his brother. Here is our Yakuza Kiwami Review.

    The game was developed by Ryu Ga Gotoku Studio and published by Sega, it was originally released on January 21, 2016, for PlayStation 3 and PlayStation 4 in Japan, but was released in the rest of the world on August 29, 2017, for only the PlayStation 4 and even later for PC and Xbox One.

    A better name would be ex-Yakuza because you dont spend any time in the Yakuza other than the start. The game starts pretty normal, but then your friend gets kidnapped and your brother kills the kidnapper, the Dojima family leader. To cover for him you stay behind and spend 10 years in jail, but nothing happens to you during that time, but the world and your friends changed. When you get out, you are still hated by the Yakuza and they try to come after you any moment they can your brother Nishikiyama has his own family but isn’t the nice brother he used to be.

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    The game is a lot like Yakuza 0, but it’s just 1 city instead of 2 and the game is very toned down with its “weird-ness”. In Yakuza 0, there were a lot of strange things with sub-stories, but here, it’s very grounded and the majority of the stories are about people being scammed or beaten up. It’s more realistic, but I do miss that weirdness a bit. Other than Majima doing some weird stuff like dressing up as a girl and zombie (and just being his strange self), nothing sticks out. There is a bit of a highlight with Haruka, the kid you have to take care of in the game and find her mother, she is just amazingly written and every scene with her is a joy to behold.

    Yakuza Kiwami Review - Majima manhole

    The mini-games are kind of the same as in Yakuza 0, but some are worked into the game differently, like the rock, paper scissors girls fight club is now worked into a kid’s video game with bug girls and cards you can collect, and the normal fight club is now a colosseum fight club, but both work kind of the same in the end, they are just placed in a different location. They also removed the girl cards, I think to make place for the bug girl cards but added locker keys you can collect to get some rewards from the lockers in the middle of the map. Finally, there is Majima with his own little mode, he can just pop up from anywhere and try to fight you. This was a lot of fun mainly because he was a great way to get some EXP to upgrade the powers.

    There isn’t really a main side mode besides Majima Everywhere, but I do miss one. Majima can take up a bit of time, but it just didn’t feel as massive as the Real Estate mode from 0. It just feels a bit lacking in a lot of ways, and so do the visuals at times. The faces of non-important characters look worse than in 0 and even the cutscenes sometimes feel like they have had a downgrade. I’m not sure if 0 got an upgrade for Series X that Kiwami didn’t get, but there is a clear difference in quality in some cutscenes. It does kinda make up for it with its cool city that got even better in the 15 +- years that passed in-game since Yakuza 0.

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    A solid game held back by the toned down nature and strange peaks and lows in visual quality

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    A solid game held back by the toned down nature and strange peaks and lows in visual qualityYakuza Kiwami Review