Doodle God: Crime City is a tile-matching puzzler developed and published by the fine folks at JoyBits, Inc. This title is the console version for Doodle Mafia, a game released on both the mobile stores and a myriad of places on PC. Similar to all the games in this long-winded series, you play as the Doodle God, an all-powerful deity with the ability to create objects through your own will and dedication. In this installment, you feel a bit on the wild side and are tasked with creating all that is good and bad in the world, the perceived order and chaos that binds society together and keeps the system from falling about. Of course, I am talking about the criminals that have the ability to run these amazing towns into the ground and the law enforcement out there with the goal of stopping these menaces. Will you be malevolent and allow the crooked and cruel to rule the day? Or are you more of a merciful being that will police the system to the best of your ability? Maybe, you just want to ride the fence and see what happens! All of these are possibilities when you pass the city limits of this crazy, crime-ridden city we all live in.
This crime-filled entry brings a lot of the same mechanics forward, while still providing a few things to shake it up for the players. Upon starting the game, you are allowed to choose between to different styles to get your matching on. One mode is a sandbox environment, something that is synonymous throughout the series where you start with a blank slate and work your way up to the top. Everything is available, you just need to have the creativity and proper materials to create it. The other is a campaign with six different storylines that vaguely relate to each other. Each story tells the tales of a criminal or police officer working to achieve their goal whether they are for the good or pure evil. Throughout these chapters, you are only provided with certain elements and your choices do matter. One wrong mistake and you may have to start the whole thing over. Lucky for us, they are not too difficult and are quite short in length. I find these stories to be pretty interesting and while they can catch some people up, I found this mode a great way to explain how the game works. They even provide you with a few of the rarer elements that you will run into throughout your sandbox playthrough. Being able to work with them in a narrated environment prepares you for future enjoyment afterward.
I was impressed by the number of new elements that were added to the game for Doodle God: Crime City. The addition of the criminal icons that we all know and love from all sorts of media was a fantastic idea. It provided a sense of nostalgia and I found myself thinking, “hey, that’s pretty cool” on various occasions. Nonetheless, I had to take a step back and look at the bigger picture. While I fully enjoyed the campaigns, they came and went rather quickly, and I was left with nothing to do except try combination after combination until I made something that allowed me to progress. It is very repetitive and starts to become monotonous after a while. That is the issue that plagues the entire Doodle God series. The games provide some enjoyment, but I do not understand the transition these games are making from the app store on our mobile devices to our consoles. It has an appealing nature for 35 minutes to an hour, then you feel like putting it down and not touching it for a while.
The visuals aesthetics provided the same vibe as the others and similar to my review on Doodle God: Ultimate Edition, I feel that they are the best feature present. No, they are not ultra-realistic, and they provide nothing that would pique your nostalgic mind, but there is just something to the colorful nature that I could not get over. The sandbox mode provided a transitioning city that you build from the ground up as you become more prolific in your adventures. This is your city and while you cannot build it to your exact liking, you definitely have the choice of how the world is shaped. The sounds were nothing to write home about, mostly just a few sounds here and there that got very repetitive. Yes, I understand I made an element, there are over 200 of them. So, do you really need to tell me every time? I did not find it as annoying as others, but I certainly did not like hearing it over and over again for the few hours I played.
Overall, Doodle God: Crime City has a well flushed-out campaign with a few other interesting elements and is priced at $7 USD make the game very affordable. Also, I found this installment to be a lot better than its predecessors and I recommend playing the game. However, I do not know if I can recommend playing it on the Xbox One as I did. Not only does it have a higher price point than its mobile counterpart, but I suffered various crashing issues throughout my playthrough. It doesn’t look much different and it plays just the same. So, if the game really interests you, I would just pay the $2.50 USD and get it on your favorite mobile device.
*Note: A copy of this game was provided for the purpose of the review.
Final Score: 5/10
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