Finnish developers 10Tons are quickly building a name for themselves as twin-stick shooter specialists.
Last year Neon Chrome set the stage as an impressive twin stick shooter, and only last month Time Recoil proved that twin-stick shooters are capable of breaking the space-time continuum. Looking back to last years Neon Chrome, Jydge is set in the same cyberpunk universe, but rather than a hacker controlling bots, you control Jydge (pronounced Judge) who’s 10tons take on the mighty Judge Dredd.
The mighty Crime lord is tightening his grip on Edenbyrg, and the game begins as the police chief launched the Jydge initiative.
From here on in, you’ll control the Jydge from preventing bank robberies, riots or breaking into gang hideouts, you’ll start each mission with three objectives, completing each objective will reward you with a shiny yellow square which will combine to unlock future levels and if you get stuck you can revisit a mission a second time round on Hardcore difficulty which throws tougher and more numerous enemies at you as well as three more objectives to fulfill.
Initially everything feels very similar to Neon Chrome, high quality, responsive and accurate controls will mean you can make easy work of the early levels, but soon enough you’ll come across a key card to unlock a door only to find the polite notice that the door is now unlocked permanently.
Jydge doesn’t expect you to replay a mission over and over, instead you’ll open up a new approach to bypass certain areas making timed objectives easier next time around. There’s also a wealth of upgrades for both Jydge and his trusty weapon known as the Gavel. With progression, collecting money you find lying around and the yellow squares, you’ll be able to unlock new slots for up to 4 cyberware mods on Jydge, such as a hacking tool to bypass certain doors or control turrets, or more run-of-the-mill mods such as armor and health buffs but with 35 in total there’s plenty to work through.
The gavel also has a wide range of enhancements, from 14 different fire modes ranging from a spray and pray auto-rifle, shotgun blasts or precise ricochet lasers, you’ll find these combine nicely with up to 4 gravel Mods (from a selection of 25) as well as 25 secondary fire modes including more powerful rockets and such which will often deal masses of damage to numerous enemies.
There’s a lot of mods and extra’s to get through and depending what you choose can completely change the style of the game, some will call for a more tactical approach while others reward running in all guns blazing and soon enough you’ll come across the survival levels which turn everything on it’s head and task you with a whole new approach to completing the task at hand.
The gameplay remains solid, fun and accessible and the continuous flurry of unlocks will keep you progressing as you work your way through both normal and hardcore versions of the 18 levels spread across four acts.
That might not sound massive, however collecting all of the yellow squares wont be an easy task and I found myself jumping back and forth between missions to rack up a few more squares in order to unlock one more mod, or build up enough funds to test out a new primary or alternate fire mode.
Graphically, fans of Neon Chrome will feel at home with the sci-fi blues and purples with detailed levels and clear projectiles. There’s not a massive range of locations and between each act your surroundings do often feel a little too familiar, but if a few hundred bullets flying towards you aren’t enough to distract you then you’ll need to play a little more.
The sound is full of enemy cries, bullets and Judge Dredd style voice overs, as well as police calls that very briefly outline the missions ahead, Just as with the disappointing background music, I found myself somewhat underwhelmed with the audio, but it’s thankfully of a very good quality even if not to my personal taste.
I would have liked to hear more, sounds, effects, chatter and maybe more civilians to make it feel a little more like a living city rather than a deserted block with only a few unlucky civilians left over.
One thing that certainly impressed me was the feeling of progression and the level of value for a game costing only £10.99, not always moving on to the next mission, but even dying quickly I’d find myself with a few hundred credits extra, and one step closer to another cyberware mod or weapon upgrade.
Bottom Line :
Jydge might have room for improvement when it comes to story, level design or audio, but as a fun, accessible and rewarding twin stick shooter, it’s an amazing experience which will keep you coming back for more by constantly throw new and exciting ways for you to enjoy dealing some Jystice.
Gameplay : 9
Graphics : 8
Sound : 7
Story : 7
Value : 9
Overall : 8 / 10