• Publisher: Konami
  • Release Date: Aug 16, 2005

Mixed or average reviews - based on 40 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 7 out of 40
  2. Negative: 5 out of 40
  1. DJ exemplifies the maturation of handheld gaming - full-fledged console quality in a smaller, more approachable package. [Aug 2005, p.52]
  2. It's exactly that solid game you're looking for to take with you on a long trip, or to play when you've gotten tired of all sports games and the like. Konami was smart for picking this up for publishing.
  3. I can do nothing but recommend DJ highly, even if the game is on the short side, the game is perfect for those on the go.
  4. Its mixture of platformer and third-person shooter holds considerable potential, but unfortunately there isn’t a whole lot of gameplay development throughout the relatively short single-player campaign.
  5. It's not impossibly hard, but easily frustrated, weak sauce gamers may want to try before they buy. Still, Death Jr. has a great style, and the characters have a lot of personality, so even with its flaws, it's definitely worth playing. [Sept 2005, p.82]
  6. 75
    Essentially a platformer with added elements of a first person shooter. This style gives the player a nice change from the norm, but has an unrefined feel.
  7. A solid but predictable game with a creepy personality.
  8. It seems likely the world will see more of DJ, and gamers should look forward to it; but maybe next time the movie should come out before the game.
  9. 70
    The way that the dialog sequences are just text -- not even a face of who's talking to go with the text -- and how the bosses don't even get their own theme song for battles, there are just too many compromises made in the production value to maintain the energy and excitement that this game needs.
  10. Overall, the game is just average, but the potential is there for something really special if a sequel cam our way. [Sept 2005, p.115]
  11. The graphics and sound in Death Jr. are nothing spectacular. The music is catchy but repetitive, and the sound effects are sparse and basic.
  12. There's more humor and character development at the Web site than in the game, so if you are still curious, check out the Death Jr. Web site and maybe - maybe - rent it for a day or two.
  13. While the game definitely isn't perfect, much of the action can be somewhat entertaining. That is if you can get past the annoying camera angles and sloppy lock-on system.
  14. The core ideas are there, and the challenge is refreshing in these days of infinite lives and sometimes simple gameplay. But the unpolished controls and targeting system cause massive headaches on top of being challenged, thus making the game more difficult than it should be.
  15. Just brighten up the levels and give me some camera scripting and this game would have scored a full [twenty] points higher.
  16. What's especially unfortunate is that you'll find sprinklings of a great game concept all throughout Death Jr.'s relatively short storyline. It just never successfully delivers.
  17. Simply put, the control of DJ should’ve been left to the directional pad, the camera should’ve been centered to the nub, and the weapon select should’ve been placed on a subscreen accessed by the start or select buttons.
  18. Playing as the Grim Reaper's son should have been cool, except for the lazy platforming bits and repetitive action.
  19. Great idea, poor execution. It's a common story, but this was supposed to be an uncommon game. Hopefully things will turn around should a sequel pan out, but the first Death's DOA.
  20. 60
    Oftentimes the game will thrust you into difficult, unexpected situations with little warning; try-and-die when you only have a few attempts before starting the fairly lengthy levels all over again, is frustrating.
  21. The result looks well tasty, but is hard to swallow. [PSW]
  22. It has memorable characters that certainly could have made it a standout hit for gamers, but it seems the developers didn’t put enough time into fixing all the faults that included problems with camera angles, controls and more.
  23. Cute and charming in a macabre way. The opportunity for reaping rewards from the creative premise is, however, largely squandered. The control problems are almost enough to sound the death knell by themselves, and other issues of balance or polish also interfere with player enjoyment.
  24. Quotation forthcoming. [Nov 2005]
  25. After all of the hype about the story, the Death Jr. comic book, and the upcoming film, one would think that the actual game would include a kick @$$ story, but that's just not the case. There's a neat opening cut scene, but past that there's nothing worth checking out.
  26. 60
    After all of the hype about the story, the Death Jr. comic book, and the upcoming film, one would think that the actual game would include a kick @$$ story, but that's just not the case.
  27. A dodgy camera and touchy controls can be fixed. I know I wasn't the only one at E3 who told the producer that the camera was a mess. But, alas, they shipped this most stylish and most gore-riffic game with its major problems still intact.
  28. Bland, boring, infuriating, and above all, painfully disappointing.
  29. It's not nearly as fun to play as it is to watch in cutscene form. The game tries to emulate the vibe and humor of Psychonauts, but doesn't come close to that title's wit or personality.
  30. The fantasy sequences and overall visual style are truly a feast for the eyes, but this is little more than just a standard slash 'n' bash game in pretty clothing. [Christmas 2005, p.104]
  31. The game is as hollow as the sentiments behind it. More attention should have been paid to the innerworkings of the game rather than securing the toy rights and shopping the concept around to make a major motion picture.
  32. 50
    Bury this one six feet under. Even if the Tim Burton aesthetic turns you on, the tepid gameplay makes this disc DOA.
  33. 50
    A major disappointment, considering the game has been in development for so long we definitely had some high hopes for the game, but unfortunately the title just isn't that impressive.
  34. 50
    It sports a unique premise, wonderful art direction, and genuinely funny writing, and yet guilelessly hangs itself in the Hall of Shame by botching the camera and controls.
  35. A monotonous shooter with a crippled camera and a crush on "Psychonauts." [Sept 2005, p.93]
  36. With the bland levels, generic PS1-era platform gameplay, and cheap enemies, you shouldn't bother. [Sept 2005, p.116]
  37. This is a tired, dull platformer that only manages to avoid the pitfalls of purgatory by way of its groovy style and decent character design.
  38. Even with just an additional pair of buttons for camera movement, a broad switch of irritations could have been avoided, but as it is, Death Jr is recommended only for forgiving platformer enthusiasts. [Nov 2005, p.113]
  39. You quickly realize that Death Jr. is the right character in the wrong game. The erratic camera control and the resulting difficulty factor stop the game dead in its tracks when it comes to the fun factor.
  40. A whole lot of hot air and buzz with nothing to back it up.
User Score

Mixed or average reviews- based on 21 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 8 out of 12
  2. Negative: 3 out of 12
  1. ZemZ.
    Jul 6, 2007
    In reality i score this game an 8.5. first let me open this review by stating that the published reviews are misleading. camera issues are minamal, spiderman 3 has more issues than DJ. okay now that that's cleared up let me start by pointing out that i hate platformers & that i love shooters, but i still enjoy this game, you don't have to be a masocist or a platformer enthusist to enjoy DJ. you just have to be prepared for this game to kick your @$$ some stages are chananging, very challenging, & this is not a pick it , play it , beat it game. you have to play, really play. but DJ is a good solid game. you have tons of wepons including C4 hamsters, dule pistoles, a shotgun, a freeze gun, & many others & you can up grade them. still the humor & plot will keep you playing long into the wee hours in the morning, easy to start hard to stop, if your interested enough to read this review you'll probably have a blast with this bargan bin bounty, enjoy. Full Review »
  2. JohnnyA.
    Oct 10, 2005
    This game sucks and I want my forty bucks back.
  3. PatrickW.
    Oct 9, 2005
    Nice graphics but the game is not very fun at all. Who wants to get carpal tunnel trying to latch a silly scythe into a hanging fish hook to move to the next level? If I could return the game I would. Full Review »