Yakuza Kiwami 2 Preview

Yakuza Kiwami 2 is the latest remake effort in the series revamping the second main line entry and modernizing it. This effort has been built using the latest Yakuza 6: The Song of Life "Dragon Engine" and the results are excellent. I'm very impressed with this release in terms of visuals and the design. For some context I've never played the original release as I haven't for many of these titles. I've joined in at the right time I feel as I was able to experience "Kiwami" and "The Song of Life" prior to playing this reviewing both of those.

It's a good time to join in as it looks like they're working through each of the titles, I'd definitely personally suggest checking out the original game prior to giving this one a whirl. That being said, this is a good entry point too as it does give the offer to catch up on what you've missed. The story also allows an easy access point so this could easily be your first Yakuza title and it'll provide a grand time. With this preview I'm only able to discuss content prior to Chapter 4, the full review to follow will go over the rest of the experience. This entry takes place a year after the last one where events send Kiryu back into the fold as he attempts to make peace. This is rocky and he's immediately greeted by a tough threat, Ryuji Goda.
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Both of these individuals are considered dragons and the campaign is based around the two conflicting powers. It's a neat dynamic to have such a clear cut line of the main villain here. Obviously there's a lot more going on it seems, but the focus at least near the start is on these two. You get a ton of cutscenes going on with minimal play at first. There's a lot to go over and many characters to introduce. Various improvements have been made with this release and it looks great. This is the most impressed I've been with the series thus far and it delivers.

The areas seem lively with people and it runs well. The combat is fluid being taken from the sixth game and adapted here. It's a great time whether you're working through the story or tackling side missions. You could also stop by a shop to eat some highly detailed food. I played some Virtua Fighter for a bit, walked around the local town and was yet again impressed by the quality of the world. I also find the story rather epic and with this deadlock of two key individual leads being the focus it's great. I look forward to compiling my full review of the title when the embargo time comes. It's looking good and while I might not be able to draw comparisons between the original with this, I'm sure fans will be happy with what they've done here.

Read our Yakuza 6: The Song of Life Review
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Gamerheadquarters Reviewer Jason Stettner