• Just before we go ahead, a little heads up that the following review will be based solely on how the game performs on the PC platform. For the original review of the excellent game please check here!

It is great to see how far PC gaming has come, as there was once a point where a lot of the console releases were not making its way onto the PC, such as games like Enslaved, Neverdead, Vanquish, SSX, Red Dead Redemption and many more. Whilst some of them did eventually make it to the PC, it took a lot longer than it should have.

However as we know, Sega is committed to giving PC gamers some attention as well, and have begun releasing loads of their impressive games on the PC, such as the Yakuza series and even Vanquish. However, these can still be counted as early days as Sega comes to grips with PC porting, especially as Japan does not have much experience with it, since the PlayStation dominates the chart there nationally. Let’s see how their latest Yakuza: Kiwami fares on the PC.

As you can see in the picture, the game comes with a number of options, which is always good for PC Gamers, as those with mid-end PCs can tweak everything individually in order to find a balance between visuals and performance, with options running from low to ultra. Interestingly, it has a setting for full frame cut-scenes, meaning that cut-scenes won’t be rendered at a low frame rate, and will match the scale of the gameplay frame rates. It is especially welcoming for those that don’t like cut-scenes dropping in smoothness, or those that at least want their cut-scenes to run optimally.

Another option this port has that I like, is a frame rate option which a lot of games miss on the PC, forcing you to use a third party software in order to monitor performance in order to tweak the settings accordingly.

Lastly, SSAA which is basically supersampling that increases the clarity of your visuals is also present here, allowing you to scale your by up to x8. A little something for those with a beefy computer to use.

PC Used: 

  • Graphics Card:  Nvidia GTX 980ti
  • Processor: Intel i7 6700K @4.0 GHz
  • Installed Memory (Ram): 32 GB
  • OS: Windows 10 Home x64
  • Nvidia Driver Version: 418.91

Yakuza Kiwami System Requirements:

The settings that you can see in the pictures attached to the Graphic Settings section is what I used to test the game, and when compared to the reasonably low system requirements, you can imagine my PC didn’t break a sweat, rendering the game in 4k at 60 FPS without a problem.  So, I wouldn’t be surprised if an OEM or low end card was to run the game on lower settings with a decent frame rate, as I have already seen people running the game on low end cards such as the GT 710 and 1030 on lower resolution/settings, which makes sense as Kiwami is a remake of an old game.

Whilst the graphics might not look as stunning as some of today’s juggernauts, playing in a higher resolution such as 4k really makes the game look appealing with crisp textures, and some great rendering work with reflective puddles and certain post process effects. Luckily it isn’t taxing to run in 4k with full scale rendering at all. The SSAA can make it look even better, but I couldn’t get away with 60 FPS even at just x2 amount so it is a lot more demanding but you don’t need it at such a high resolution.

I did notice quite a few issues with the audio for some reason, with it de-syncing or cutting at times, rendering certain fighting effects mute. At the moment there hasn’t been a patch particularly dedicated to fix it. Not to mention a lot of gamers reported a critical bug during a Haruka Quest section where the game isn’t registering the win properly, preventing players from progressing.

Other issues talked about include a quick-time and grab responsiveness bug at 144 Hz which prevents players from escaping grabs and completing quick-time events as certain logic is tied to the game’s framerate. With a PC game, as the Frame Rate can be inconsistent compared to a console, it is not a good idea to program with framerate in mind, which can break certain mechanics.

As soon as the game loaded, and I saw the above splash screen, I knew it was going to be a fool’s errand to play the game with a mouse and keyboard setup, and I was definitely right as there are quite a few odd design and implementation choices that prevents you from enjoying the game completely with a mouse and keyboard setup.

One of the biggest reasons you can’t really enjoy the game with a mouse and keyboard is due to issues with artificial mouse acceleration, which rotates the player’s camera jarringly, with an uneven or slow speed. Not to mention, the camera is clipped to look up and down at a certain angle, which does hinder the experience with mouse use as generally you want fluid and unrestricted movement. The camera also auto centres which should have had an option to disable it.

Furthermore, buttons that are typically not used as action or quit buttons with PC games have been associated to odd events. For example, in the picture as you can see above, E is used to skip with F9 used to resume. I have never seen anyone use an F9 key for resume or, anything other than load quick save before. It feels like something they used as a debug input, to test out the resume feature in PC got left behind. In the menu, Q or E don’t really make sense as you can still use Esc and Return button to achieve the same task.

The game does allow you to remap controls, but certain bindings are combined into one, like the Dodge/OK button, and Combine/ Cancel button. So one button is being used for two different actions. Whilst it doesn’t really mess with the game most of the time, it is still an odd choice as it’s always better to have gameplay and UI buttons separate.

All in all, whilst the game runs tremendously well and looks really good on a higher resolution, the game does have jarring issues with mouse and keyboard support. Whilst I appreciate that the developers amusingly recommend a controller before the game starts, it is something they need to improve for future releases. As even though I am completely OK with using controllers, a lot of PC gamers rarely use it.

Not to mention audio and other bugs with the build is preventing certain players from finishing it, so not everyone is guaranteed a bug free experience. So far only one patch has been released that has yet to address these issues.

Still, I won’t fault the devs for a lot of these issues, as they are still coming to grips with PC ports, and this can be called a learning experience which hopefully affect the future releases. The game runs great, and is priced fairly, but is suffering from control and technical issues that might put some players off. My recommendation? Either play the game with a controller and enjoy it or wait for a patch or two to see how much of the issues will be ironed out and if the game will be supported continuously.

  • Just a reminder again that the score below is only indicative of the PC Port and not the game itself, for the game score please read the original review linked above.


Author

Haris Iqbal
Haris Iqbal

I am a guy who loves anything with a powerful storyline, whether it be a game, book or movie, it doesn't matter. Just so long as it hooks me in and keeps my imagination captive till the last word/scene! Also, I am huge Silent Hill fan, so I love all things Silent Hill... and anything horror. Huge horror fanatic!