In Judgment, you play as the disgraced lawyer, Takayuki Yagami, as you follow his path to redemption. Now a private detective you will be solving crimes, collecting evidence, investigating, interrogating and running around the streets of Kamurocho uncovering its many secrets. Judgment comes from the makers of the highly regarded Yakuza series of games and features high octane fueled combat and court appearances where you present your evidence for the case.
Kamurocho has been hit by a string of particularly gruesome murders. Yagami is determined to find the person(s) responsible and bring them to justice. You must tackle gangs of thugs, dark characters and the seedy goings-on to solve the case and hopefully find redemption.
The World is Your Playground
Judgment is an open-world game that features a ton of side quests, side missions and activities to lose yourself in. You can make friends, buy some food, go shopping and visit a bar and drink your troubles away. There is a lot to do in the Kamurocho and at every turn, there is something enticing and pulling you in.
Troubles from the Past
The main narrative is very compelling. Yagami has a troubled past that haunts him throughout the game and is trying to “do the right thing”. However, distinguishing what that is, is not an easy feat. The storytelling is very good with some interesting characters and at times tense plots. The main story progresses at a relatively good pace, although at times it does feel like it drags on. I think this is mainly in part because the detective side of things is very samey from mission to mission. However, this is a small dink in an otherwise interesting plot.
There are side missions and ways to spend your time in Judgment. The side missions particularly are your main source of income. From finding lost cats to chasing thieves, there is a wide variety of side missions. Although they don’t add anything to the main storyline, they are varied and sometimes rather outrageous.
A lot of the time a mission or case will result in some form of combat. These combat sections are fast-paced and involve a lot of punching, kicking, grabbing and blocking in a series of mad button bashing, combotastic moves. Yagami can run up walls, jump over enemies and dodge attacks. Additional skills can be unlocked with experience allowing Yagami to perform even deadly, over the top combs. However, Yagami is also very fragile, especially when facing off against a “boss”. A few badly timed counters or dodges can cost you a lot of health. So combat is more than just bash the buttons and hope, blocking, dodging and countering is needed. You can also build up to some powerful “EX” moves that unleashes a world of pain on your unsuspecting foes.
Please be my Friend
If you fancy taking time off from detective work and beating up bad guys there are a host of activities to occupy your time. Drone racing is, for example, one of these activities which is fun if not totally irrelevant to the game. You can also make friends by helping out citizens of Kamurocho who will give you access to new abilities, combat moves and items. You can even find yourself a girlfriend and go on a date.
There is a ton of stuff to do in this game. The main storyline will keep you plenty busy but factor in the random side quests, friends missions, drone racing and a whole host of other things you certainly get your money's worth. It features a nice blend of adrenaline-fuelled combat and solid detective/investigational work.
I have had a great time playing Judgment, admittedly I started to skip some of the side missions and didn’t spend a lot of time on the other activities but they are there if this is your thing. I liked the mix of the detective work mixed in with the combat. If you are into the Yakuza theme/setting then Judgment is worth checking out. I can see a lot of people really getting hooked on this game and sinking many hours, racing drones, playing pinball, making friends and then realising they have a case to solve and cracking on with the detective work.