SEGA has announced that Yakuza Kiwami, the HD remake of the PS2 classic Yakuza, is now available in North America and Europe exclusively on PS4. To celebrate the game's launch, SEGA released the game's launch trailer, which you can see below.
Being retold in Kiwami is the nascent character arc for Yakuza - the game begins with series protagonist Kazuma Kiryu getting sent to prison for the murder of his family patriarch (which he didn't commit). To make matters worse, during the 10 years of his imprisonment, not only does Kiryu's clan expel him from the yakuza, but ¥10 billion (~$100 million) goes missing from the clan treasury. Worse yet, Kiryu's childhood sweetheart is also nowhere to be found, and with the entirety of the Japanese underworld on the hunt for the missing cash, Kiryu is all but lost until he finds the orphan girl Haruka, searching for her aunt who shares the same name as Kiryu's missing love. What follows from there is a web of betrayal, underworld politics, and redemption as nothing will stop Kiryu from regaining his honor.
Yakuza Kiwami provides an excellent starting point for those who have always heard about the series but have yet to try it. It preserves the charm of old-school, PS2-era beat-em-up gameplay, but deftly combines it with a hard-boiled crime drama punctuated with the liveliness of Kamurocho - the fictional red-light district of Tokyo the game is set in - and all the distractions that a red-light district can offer.
Yakuza Kiwami Features:
- A Family Patriarch's Ransom of New Content - "Kiwami" literally translates to "extreme," and the game was named that for good reason. Not just a simple graphical upgrade, Kiwami adds nearly 30 minutes of cutscenes alone, providing all-new insight into the game's plot and creating common threads with series prequel Yakuza 0. There's also added distractions (Pocket Circuit car racing, MesuKing: Battle Bug Beauties, new hostesses, and more), side quests, combat updates, re-recorded Japanese dialogue, and more to bring the original Yakuza game into the latest console generation.
- A Place for Newcomers and Veterans - Yakuza Kiwami is the ultimate bridge in the series: newcomers or those whose Yakuza experience started with Yakuza 0 will have familiar, exacting controls, top-notch SEGA localization, and a solid starting point for entering the Yakuza franchise fresh. Veterans will experience a familiar Kamurocho and plot, but with new levels of story depth and graphical polish.
- But it was me! Majima! - Completely new to Kiwami is the "Majima Everywhere" system, where the series' deranged, one-eyed maniac will constantly surprise and challenge Kiryu to combat when he least expects it. We're talking "popping out of a goofy costume" levels of surprise, so players must stay on their toes and be ready to defend themselves from Kiryu's chief rival.
- Extreme Revitalization - Kiwami is rebuilt from the ground up with all new HD assets, exclusive Japanese voice audio re-recorded by the series cast, and more; optimized for the PlayStation 4 and running in 1080p/60fps.
For those who are picking up the game's Launch Edition, you can check the video below to see just how how extreme the Yakuza Kiwami launch edition is.
Yakuza Kiwami is available for $29.99/£29.99/€34.99.