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Ghost Trick

iOS DS

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#1 MrToad

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Posted 19 October 2017 - 11:36 AM

Technically this isn't really a new game, but an iOS conversion of an old DS classic. The good news is it's great, largely because it's a complete breath of fresh air in many ways :)

At the beginning of the game your character finds that he's a ghost next to his corpse, which is lying at the bottom of a junkyard. An unfortunate side effect of being recently dead is that you've completely lost your memory, so you've got no idea who you are, let alone why you're lying dead or how you got there... or who the redhead girl is or why she's being attacked by a blue skinned hitman in a sharp suit. And you've only got until dawn to unravel all these mysteries.

Thing is though, you're a lucky ghost because you've got special "powers of the dead" (or indeed "ghost tricks" ;)) which allow you to possess and manipulate objects, travel down phone lines and rewind time to four minutes before someone's death (except your own, of course) so you can change their fate. And thus an unusual film noir-esque mystery thriller unfolds through the medium of a continuous series of puzzles.

The action itself is quite straightforward. You switch into "ghost mode", where time is paused, to move between objects which you can then manipulate when you switch back to real time. But your transfer range between objects is very short, so you have to create a chain of objects to get from A to B. It starts off pretty simple, with solutions as simple as opening a box will cause the lid to extend far enough for you to reach the gate which you can swing to knock the gun out of the hitman's hand and save the girl... at least temporarily. But it gradually gets more complicated and introduces timing related challenges too, such as open a cupboard door to flick a ball across the room, then quickly move to the ball so you move with it and get into position for the next trick. Thankfully the game is quite forgiving; it's primarily about solving the problem, not precision timing. Once I'd worked out what I was supposed to do it usually only took a few goes to get it right. Also, while some of the solutions can be a little "unusual", the characters are often quite generous with hints to point you in the right direction. I found I made it through the whole game quite comfortably without ever really getting stuck for long.

However, what really sucked me in and held me was the plot. The story is quite dark in theme, but told with tongue firmly in cheek. There's a large cast of crazy characters and events get increasingly outlandish. Things possibly get a little too silly towards the end, but is saved by a suitably satisfying denouement. It's also just about the right length too - I managed to blitz it in probably about 10-ish hours.

I found solving problems and manipulating events from the shadows became immensely satisfying, particularly when combined with the wacky but involving plot served with large dollops of humour.

On iOS it's free to download the app itself which includes the first couple of chapters, and that's more than enough to know if you'll like it. After that you can buy the rest of the plot as an IAP for £9.99, which is a fairly reasonable price for the considerable enjoyment I had from it :)

If you want something completely different and refreshing then I highly recommend it :)

#2 qazimod

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Posted 20 October 2017 - 01:35 PM

I got it when it came out on DS and really enjoyed it. The writing is both entertaining and compelling (it's a Takumi game, so that's a given) and the interactions are fun and rarely fall into the Phoenix Wright trap of "try everything on everything". Obviously the story is packed with cliffhangers and revelations, but there's also a fantastic twist to the gameplay about halfway through that I wasn't expecting (only click if you've played the game!)...

 

Spoiler

 

I had seen some trailers before the game's release but that came out of the blue and was amazing. :D So yeah, there's lots to enjoy and the animation and little details are great too.


Edited by qazimod, 20 October 2017 - 01:35 PM.


#3 MrToad

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Posted 24 October 2017 - 03:26 PM

Yeah, there are some great twists, both in plot and gameplay. That one you mention is particularly good! :) And some brilliant setpieces too; I was completely hooked on wanting to see what insanity would be around the next corner.

There are some bits that get a bit fiddly, but never to the point where it's more than mildly annoying, and rarely for very long. And tbh they are totally eclipsed by the general brilliance of everything else.

Loved it :)





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