Review of Judgment Remastered

Judgment Remastered is, in short, a tuned-up version of the original game. After an initial release in Japan, Judgment launched globally on PS4 in summer 2019, with fans now able to get a remastered version of the game on PS5 and Xbox Series X, as well as Stadia. It seems, based on the nature of the enhancements, that this remaster is aimed at new audiences who haven’t played the game yet, not those who want to play again. For the uninitiated, Judgment is a spin-off of the Yakuza franchise, where players take on the role of detective Takayuki Yagami. It differs from the main franchise in many ways, but the most notable is the overall direction and gameplay. Judgment is much more varied, for better and worse, than the original Yakuza games. Yagami can solve various cases as part of the main story and in side quests throughout Kamurocho, but the overall story is undeniably its biggest draw. Judgment is a slow burn, but once the Yakuza-influenced story gets going, it manages to hook players. The first two hours feature a lot of hand-holding tutorials, which at times feel really unnecessary, and that really detracts from the experience. Once released, however, it’s easy to get invested in the overall mystery and story of Judgment. There’s something about helping out old ladies to chasing down serial killers that really makes the game shine, especially when complemented by a wide cast of characters. Some are easy to forget, but it’s the standouts that really help keep players hooked. judgment yagami close-up If Judgment stumbles anywhere, it’s the gameplay. Combat, outside of a few special encounters like with bosses, is often repetitive. It’s easy to compare it to a typical Yakuza game, but at the same time, it has its own strengths and weaknesses. Players can switch between two combat styles, one of which is supposedly designed to fight multiple enemies at once and the other which is more focused on one-on-one, but it doesn’t seem to be too important The main combat is limited to two buttons, meaning it’s a lot of mashing, and that’s particularly true when faced with the fodder types of enemies that pop up in the game world. It gets more complicated than that, with special meters, timed buttons, and quick responses, but at the end of the day, combat probably won’t surprise most players. Much the same can be said when players are looking for clues or the like; usually, that just involves moving the cursor until there’s some shake or flicker on the screen. When chasing or running from someone, it’s just a matter of pressing the right button at the right time. And while tailing someone, it’s about slowly following and getting behind objects in the environment when someone who has no reason to be suspicious is looking over their shoulder. There are many little things that also confuse the Judgement. Conversations have clear right or wrong options, where players gain experience for choosing the most logical (and sometimes most obvious) option. Although the act of opening the door with the correct key results in an experience, there is no real fun factor in trying to memorize keys for fictional doors. Overall, though, these are smaller things that the PS5/Xbox Series X remaster of Judgment will never change, but maintaining the identity is clearly important here. Despite some odd choices, Judgment Remastered is everything the original Judgment was: interesting, gritty, fun, and surprising. The game will often make players think about something, only to turn it around and send them in a different direction. It’s a refreshing story with an interesting world, which is slightly marred by its gameplay. The best part about this remaster, in particular, is that it takes everything that made the original game and makes it better. judgment sega The best way to describe the improvements to Judgment is “precision.” As a game released in 2018/2019, there is no need to remake the game and the need for a remaster is less pressing. As such, the best parts of the game are all there, but turned up to 11. Overall visuals, FPS performance, and loading times have been improved. In other words, loading times are reduced significantly, while graphics are crisper and clearer. A downfall of this approach is that a good remaster for the PS5 can include more, and this seems to avoid DualSense. Judgment Remastered doesn’t really take advantage of the PS5 DualSense controller, however, at least not to the extent it could. There are times when the controller seems to react to what’s going on in-game, but it’s nothing more than basic rumbles. Of course, with the game launching on Stadia and Xbox Series X for the first time as well, Sega may be aiming for extensive touch-ups. As mentioned, this remaster is intended for newcomers and is therefore the best way to experience the game, even if it should not be played for those who have already experienced it in the last generation. Luckily, those returning to Judgment Remastered can also have reason to look forward to something new. Sega treated May 7 as Judgment Day, with many speculating that this was a follow-up announcement. That ultimately remains to be seen, but if there’s one thing this remaster proves, it’s that Judgment deserves its own franchise. Judgment Remastered is now available on PS5, Stadia, and Xbox Series X. The PS5 code was provided to Today Technology for the purposes of this review. MORE: 10 Nintendo Switch Games That Are Like the Yakuza Series

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