JYDGE (iOS) Review

By Lex Firth 03.03.2018

Review for JYDGE on iOS

The era of the twin-stick shooter may be long in the past, but it still lives on in a handful of more retro-inspired modern titles, such as Enter the Gungeon and the Geometry Wars series. Closely associated with a higher difficulty level as in the "good old days," it's a genre that doesn't always appear welcoming or approachable, making it a tough sell to newcomers - recent release JYDGE seems to have bucked the trend, however, making waves on PC and across the current major home consoles. Now, its reach extends to a mobile edition, but is this a high-quality miniature version?

JYDGE takes place in a dystopian future where the cityscapes are dark, the lighting is neon, and the crime is rampant - so far, so cliché. The player takes the role of an officer in the JYDGE incentive, a not-so-subtle nod to Judge Dredd, in helping to stamp out the crime wave currently affecting the city of Edynburg. This generally entails coursing through various tightly-packed buildings, shooting generic criminals, and avoiding killing the unbelievable number of hostages dotted around.

Unfortunately, that's all there really is to JYDGE, as it never develops beyond this initial draft. There's a real lack of variety as far as the locales go - it's all a case of running around office buildings, houses, and bars - and the buildings themselves aren't always conducive to the gameplay itself; the corridors are often too tight for fluid movement, and there never seems to be enough cover to formulate even a split-second strategy as soon as the action kicks off.

Part of this is due to a particularly wonky AI factor that makes enemies follow the player with pin-point accuracy as soon as the first shot is fired. It's unforgiving, unrelenting, and often just plain annoying, as it leaves no room for error or even a chance to breathe during a particularly hectic stage. It's absolutely not helped by the small screen of this particular port, which makes it difficult to see beyond the gunfire - as soon as the enemies start firing back, the presentation is far too busy to remotely comprehend what's actually going on.

Screenshot for JYDGE on iOS

Perhaps this would be redeemable if the controls were tight, but a scheme that already felt sluggish on the console versions struggles even more on a touch-screen interface where it's easy to let fingers and thumbs cover up critical action points; an entirely adequate stealthy action plan can easily be scuppered due to an enemy hidden by the uncomfortable control scheme.

There is, thankfully, plenty of content here for those who can see through the surface flaws - there's a pleasantly deep amount of customisation in the "Department of Jystice" (yes, that really is the name), with a number of "Cyberware" upgrades to the Jydge themselves, as well as the ability to change various parts of the "Gavel," the clumsily-named weapon. These are paid for using credits earned by replaying missions and completing various side objectives, although these rarely stray beyond basic requests such as rescuing all of the hostages in a given stage or completing the mission within a specific time limit.

Again, it's all well and good having this wealth of gameplay options, but these sadly mean nothing when the stale, plain-feeling gameplay doesn't lend itself well to multiple playthroughs. It especially falters in comparison to developer 10tons' other offerings, such as the roguelike-inspired Neon Chrome and the unique Time Recoil; without a particular gimmick to its name, JYDGE feels somewhat lacking.

Screenshot for JYDGE on iOS

Cubed3 Rating

Rated 5 out of 10


It's technically impressive in comparison to its bigger brothers on PC and home consoles, but JYDGE still fails to impress on iOS. It's unremarkable and repetitive, and is made even more impenetrable by an unpolished control scheme and a foggy display in the heat of battle; not to mention a particularly bland presentation and premise - spelling the name with a "y" certainly isn't enough to make this firmly average shooter stand out from the crowd.









C3 Score

Rated $score out of 10  5/10

Reader Score

Rated $score out of 10  0 (0 Votes)

European release date Out now   North America release date Out now   Japan release date Out now   Australian release date Out now   


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