Yakuza Kiwami: The Best Changes From The Original Game (2024)

The Yakuza series is easily one of the best open-world franchises around, with each game featuring small yet densely-packed districts all over the country of Japan that set the stage for amazing stories with memorable characters. While getting into the Yakuza series was a huge challenge for the longest time, this changed with the advent of Yakuza 0, which served as the perfect entry point into the series for new fans of the Yakuza series.

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This release was followed up with Yakuza Kiwami, a faithful remake of the first game in the series that allowed players to experience the story of the Yakuza series in all its entirety. While some people might consider Kiwami to be too faithful of a remake, it's still a great game that does justice by the original. That being said, Kiwami does make a ton of changes from the original game, with the best alterations of the lot mentioned below.

8 More Substories To Flesh Out The World

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Substories are the bread and butter of the Yakuza series. These stories ensure that players can explore the town of Kamurocho and interact with the dozens of eccentric denizens that live in this district.

The side quests from the first game also appear in this game, along with a whole host of extra content to keep people occupied for the longest time. Suffice to say, players who want to explore every inch of Kamurocho will find these substories at every corner.

7 A Ton Of Side Activities To Keep Kiryu Busy In Kamurocho

Kamurocho might not be the biggest area around, but it sure is jam-packed with a ton of things to do. As a result, players can find themselves lost for hours on end as they discover everything this area has to offer.

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From bowling to pocket racing, there are simply way too many activities that players can invest their time in. It won't be a surprise in the slightest if players end up racking up hours upon hours just trying out the side activities in this game.

6 The Updated Combat System

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One of the biggest and most welcome changes in Yakuza Kiwami stems from the combat system. All three fighting styles of Kiryu make a comeback in the remake, which made a world of difference.

After all, the original game only let Kiryu experiment with a solitary combat style that got really repetitive after a point. Thankfully, in Kiwami, the variety of moves Kiryu can utilize means that the game gets way more varied and interesting.

5 Excellent Japanese Voice Acting

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The first Yakuza title received an English dub for its western release, which was a mixed bag. While the voice cast was pretty talented - with the legendary Mark Hamill playing the role of Majima - there's no denying the fact that the English voices felt completely out of place in this game.

Thankfully, the remake brought back the Japanese voices everyone knows and loves. This makes the game even more novel to play through, with another annoyance being removed in Yakuza Kiwami.

4 The Novelty Of Majima Everywhere

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Majima is a fairly interesting character in the first Yakuza game, but he truly shines in Yakuza Kiwami. It's here that Majima truly showcases just how wacky of a character he really is, with the Mad Dog of Shimano hunting Kiryu down at every step of the way to help him improve his combat skills.

The sheer number of ridiculous events that are unlocked in this system makes for some truly bizarre moments. Of course, fighting Majima isn't an easy task in the slightest, but it's still a fun way to learn the mechanics of the combat system and how to deal with some of the tougher enemies in the game.

3 Cutscenes That Flesh Out Nishiki's Descent Into Anarchy

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In the original game, there wasn't really a ton of context as to why Nishiki went down the path of darkness. Without this context, players who get into Yakuza Kiwami after playing the prequel wouldn't really understand why Nishiki destroyed his bonds in the first place.

Thankfully, Kiwami takes care of this plot hole by adding scenes that detail how a desperate Nishiki became such a heinous figure. His downfall is hard to digest at times, especially for players who got attached to this character and the friendship he shared with Kiryu.

2 The Fun Progression Of The Dragon Style

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The Dragon style is Kiryu's signature combat style that ends up deteriorating once Kiryu goes to prison. After he comes back, the Dragon style is easily the most useless and ineffective style in his arsenal by a country mile.

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Only by defeating Majima and learning Komaki's moves can this style regain its former glory. Doing so turns the Dragon style into the best combat style in the game, which feels extremely rewarding.

1 Way More Heat Actions Than Ever Before

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Heat Actions are an iconic aspect of the Yakuza series that have remained steadfast since the first game. That being said, the Heat Actions present in this game were still pretty lacking, especially for fans of the modern Yakuza games.

Obviously enough, Yakuza Kiwami took care of this problem quickly. Players can now experiment around with a whole host of Heat Actions that make combat feel all the more dynamic and enjoyable!

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Yakuza Kiwami: The Best Changes From The Original Game (2024)
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