As Someone who has played and enjoyed the entire Yakuza series (Including the Kiwami versions), I have to say I am really enjoying my time with Judgement. Combat felt a little off at first, but I think that had to do more with my familiarity with Kazuma and how he fights. There were different rhythms to sort of pin down. But overall I am still having fun with it.
There was a sort of initial scare when the game introduced the investigation mechanics, sort of a "Oh great, how long till this gets boring" feeling. But around 13 hours in and it hasn't become bothersome. At least for me. I can see them getting tiresome, but the game seems good on spacing them out so far. Time will tell.
Is it better than Yakuza? It's different. I know that seems like a cop-out answer but really that's the best way I can describe it. Kamurocho still feels like Kamurocho, if that makes sense. It's another point of view and story in a setting that I have loved since 2006(?) The tone and setting are just so familiar that I was immediately comfortable with the game, even with the changes. I like the characters and, so far, the story has me hooked.
Of course I may be a bit biased toward these games. I've enjoyed every single one and can sometimes forgive their more dodgy gameplay mechanics. So, grain of salt and all that. Overall, I think, as its already been stated If you like Yakuza, you will like Judgement.