Jujutsu Kaisen Cursed Clash - a sorcerer stands before a purple maelstrom.
Image courtesy of Bandai Namco

Review: Jujutsu Kaisen Cursed Clash Is a Mindless Arena Fighter

Jujutsu Kaisen Cursed Clash is interesting in how it allows you to effortlessly do cool things. If you’re only looking for an arena fighter where you can just mash buttons and beat up on weird spirits, this game will have you covered for a little while. Even then, though, little nuisances will keep popping up throughout your play time. The characters all kinda look the same. The enemies aren’t all that challenging. Your partners get in your way instead of helping you. If you really love the anime and just want to brainlessly smack things then you’ll enjoy this to an extent. If you’re looking for anything more than that, you’ll want to look elsewhere.

Recommended Videos

Having only watched a few episodes of the anime, I looked forward to playing through its wild battles through the game’s Story Mode. While I did fight some interesting spirits while playing this mode, most of my time was spent reading. The game lays out most of the storyline through text and still images, only stopping for a battle every few minutes. If you’ve seen the anime, I feel like these recaps would be incredibly dull as you waited for something to happen. If you haven’t, you’re ALSO going to find these a dull, lifeless version of a story that’s far better when it doesn’t feel like it’s being relayed second hand. I felt like I was just reading an episode breakdown on Wikipedia. It tells the story, but so in-brief that I can’t see it appealing to any audience.

While being brief, Story Mode still manages to be tedious in Jujutsu Kaisen Cursed Clash just because of how long it rambles on for. You play through small snippets of the story in individual missions, but most of these just consist of text walls for a bit that end with a fight. Some of them are JUST the text walls. And given that it’s not doing the story any favors, it just feels like the game is wasting your time for much of the time you spend in Story Mode. Thankfully you can just skip the story if you’re tired of reading through all this stuff.

Things get marginally better when you finally get to fight something. The game is fairly basic with its combat. Square, Triangle, and Circle all let you slap your foes around with different attacks, and holding down while hitting those buttons changes the attack. However, in Story Mode, you’re just going to want to hit Square all the time. Mashing Square leads to a combo that ends with a Cursed Energy Technique (a Super, basically, and where all of your damage will come from). There is literally no downside to hammering this button the entire time you play this mode.

jujutsu kaisen cursed clash - Yuji Itadori and Nobara Kugisaki lunge forward
Image Courtesy of Bandai Namco

You CAN try to put together something fancier in Jujutsu Kaisen Cursed Clash, but the janky movement and combat make it hard to make that stuff work. I’ve tried to put the other moves into practice, playing around with different strings or making use of the Cursed Energy level (basically a Super bar, except it charges absurdly fast as it’s necessary to do actual damage) in more intricate ways, but it feels like enemies are always right on top of you or flitting around someplace far away (and are flinging projectiles). Your best bet is to always be in their face launching your fastest attack, which means you’re mashing square.

So yes, you need to land a Cursed Energy Technique to do any damage. Regular strikes don’t hurt your enemies. So, having an auto-combo that leads into those techniques is kinda necessary. Anything else feels like you’re needlessly overcomplicating your life because you have to find some place to add one of those Cursed Energy Techniques yourself by hitting R1. If you get fancy with your combo, it might look slightly cooler, but you’re adding some risk without any real extra reward as that final Cursed Energy Technique seems to be the only strike that matters.

I’ve tried to see if the other combos will do more damage in the long term in Jujutsu Kaisen Cursed Clash, but a bunch of them I tried tended to knock the enemy so far away that the Cursed Energy Technique whiffed. I ended up losing patience and just stuck to the square button, and the game largely couldn’t touch me after that point. Any time I tried to branch out, I swear the enemies would just blast me from afar, teleport right into my face out of nowhere and combo me instead, or I’d miss with the only attack that would actually hurt the enemy. So, I hope you like the square button.

As brainless fun, it sort of works, but I still had more problems with it. The game touted being able to bring in a second character, but in Story Mode, you just give this character directions with the D-Pad. I was hoping for the ability to swap between characters to link moves together in intricate ways, but you just tell them to fight aggressively, defensively, or to try to coordinate with you. What I’ve found largely happens is that the pair of you constantly interrupt each other’s combos, knocking foes away before either of you land your Cursed Energy Technique. I ended up wasting ages on the tutorial stage of this paired battle because we were incapable of landing the big special co-op technique because one of us kept knocking the enemy away. So, having a partner usually meant doing no damage and getting beat up way more often.

Jujutsu Kaisen Cursed Clash - Nobara Kugisaki faces the camera while a monster is cut in half behind her.
Image Courtesy of Bandai Namco

I am genuinely struggling to find something positive to say about Jujutsu Kaisen Cursed Clash and its combat other than that it is functional. The environments can be broken down for something that feels like a dynamic battle, but it just means stuff disappearing after it gets hit or breaking into a few pieces with no impressive effects, most of the time. Your character’s various Cursed Energy Techniques are fairly unimpressive as well, with only a handful of high level techniques doing anything interesting if you do. And even then, you need to charge it to full to do so, but you’re just better off landing smaller attacks and overwhelming your foe with basic strikes to do your low level attacks. This also tends to trigger special Joint Attacks with your partner that do solid damage (unless you or them knocked your opponent too far away) and look pretty cool. So, again, smashing square is the best thing you can do in the basic Story Mode.

The game has a few other modes if Story Mode is sounding deeply underwhelming at this point. An online co-op mode lets you and a friend fight several spirits in a row, with varying levels of challenge if you’re playing Rush Battle or Survival Battle. It’s more fun to have another person working together to fight intelligently, but only a little better. You can also do online battles against other players, and here, it would probably help to learn those combos. However, those fights lagged and chugged along so hard that I’m not sure how much the combos would help you. And that’s when I could even find a match.

If all you wanna do is smash buttons and beat up spirits from the anime, Jujutsu Kaisen Cursed Clash is serviceable. That’s about it. If you’re looking for any more depth in any way, the game simply does not have it. Combat is overly simple, and when you try to make it anything more, you just get thumped for your efforts. The support characters actively hinder you. The story is doled out in the worst way I can think of. The online is barren when it’s not lagging horribly. It’s just a flat, tiresome game that is only good for some mindless action for those absolutely itching for anything to do with the anime.

Jujutsu Kaisen Cursed Clash is available for the PS4, PS5, Nintendo Switch, Xbox One, Xbox Series X, and PC.

3
Jujutsu Kaisen Cursed Clash

Master the Jujutsu of your favorite Sorcerers and Cursed Spirits! Bring a friend and dive into the world of JUJUTSU KAISEN in this action-packed, 2-on-2 fighting game! Reviewed on PS5.

Jujutsu Kaisen Cursed Clash is a tiresome game that is only good for some completely mindless action for diehard fans of the anime.

Food For Thought
  • If you love hitting the square button, have I got a game for you.
  • It's fairly decent if you really just want to slap spirits around without putting too much thought into it.

Siliconera is supported by our audience. When you purchase through links on our site, we may earn a small affiliate commission. Learn more
related content
Read Article Preview: Hades 2 Feels Like Going Back Home
Read Article Things We’d Like to See in Hades II
Hades II
Read Article Review: Tales of Kenzera: Zau Is a Deeply Personal Metroidvania
Rating: 8
Tales of Kenzera Masks
Read Article Which Recent Roguelike Game Do You Like Best?
Which Recent Roguelike Game Do You Like Best
Read Article Review: Eiyuden Chronicle Is a Buggy Take on Suikoden 
Rating: 5
Review: Eiyuden Chronicle Is a Buggy Take on Suikoden
Related Content
Read Article Preview: Hades 2 Feels Like Going Back Home
Read Article Things We’d Like to See in Hades II
Hades II
Read Article Review: Tales of Kenzera: Zau Is a Deeply Personal Metroidvania
Rating: 8
Tales of Kenzera Masks
Read Article Which Recent Roguelike Game Do You Like Best?
Which Recent Roguelike Game Do You Like Best
Read Article Review: Eiyuden Chronicle Is a Buggy Take on Suikoden 
Rating: 5
Review: Eiyuden Chronicle Is a Buggy Take on Suikoden
Author
Joel Couture
Joel is a contributor who has been covering games for Siliconera, Game Developer, IndieGamesPlus, IndieGames.com, Warp Door, and more over the years, and has written book-length studies on Undertale, P.T., Friday the 13th, and Kirby's Dream Land.