Ghostrunner – Review
Follow Genre: FPP slasher
Developer: One More Level, Slipgate Ironworks
Publisher: All in! Games, 505 Games
Platform: PC, PS4, Xbox One, Switch
Tested on: PS4

Ghostrunner – Review

Site Score
9.5
Good: Great cyberpunk design, Fluid action gameplay
Bad: Controls are hard to get the hang of
User Score
10.0
(2 votes)
Click to vote
VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 10.0/10 (2 votes cast)

More and more creators try to blur the line between movies and games, with a smoother cinematic experience that still offers plenty of interaction or with hyperrealistic graphics. Ghostrunner takes a different approach, opting for making the gameplay as seamless as possible. Adding to that the cyberpunk post-apocalyptic setting and great action, it’s clear that the union between developers One More Level and Slipgate Ironworks is working.

Story

Set in a future with an undetermined date, the world Ghostrunner takes place in has already ended. What caused this disaster remains a mystery, but the remaining humans have taken refuge in a large, skyscraper structure called Dharma Tower. At the very top, the tyrannical Keymaster pulls the strings, while on the lower levels violence is the only way to survive. You are a Ghostrunner, an android with superhuman reflexes highly trained in combat. Originally built to keep the peace upstairs, you find yourself at the bottom of the tower with no memories and a ton of questions as to what happened. Fighting your way back up is the only way to find some answers.

The game doesn’t have a proper intro and is fond of throwing you right into the action. Often the story segments and fighting segments don’t overlap, creating a clear divide between gameplay and plot, with the latter being brought mostly through character dialogue.

Graphics

Ghostrunner looks absolutely stunning, blowing you away with cool visuals on a regular basis. Dharma Tower could not be a better stage for the blood-pumping combat you engage in, utilizing its cyberpunk design to drive home the post-apocalyptic feel of the setting. Its use of colors is also exemplary, with the bright colors used to contrast the dark, shadowy environment of the tower. These environments also tend to be a lot bigger than expected and with a lot of attention to detail put into them.

Sound

As if all the other elements didn’t already make this game feel as if you’re playing a movie, the soundtrack is the icing on the cake. Just as the graphics, the music fits the world they built like a glove, generally adding to the smooth action sequences. While there aren’t as many speaking parts in the game, they are all fully voice acted. The cast does a great job with it as well.

Gameplay

Ghostrunner is an extremely fast-paced FPP slasher with platforming elements thrown into the mix. It’s your task to get to the top of the Dharma Tower by any means necessary. Wall running, dashing, using a grappling hook, and generally being skilled at parkour will help you to accomplish this goal. Along the way, enemies will try to stop you, but you can make quick work of them with your katana. One hit is all it takes to get rid of them.

Sadly the same counts for the Ghostrunner. A single bullet will easily kill you, so using your speed to your advantage and standing still as little as possible is required. With your Sensory Boost ability, you can temporarily slow down time, making it possible to evade bullets even mid-jump. If you do die, the game has plenty of checkpoints and the respawns happen quickly, with little to no loading times. All of this adds to the fluidity of the gameplay, which is focused mainly on fast movement and trial and error. Often there are multiple ways to make it through an area, so experimenting a bit and getting a feel for where the enemies are will help you in the long run.

Floaty controls aside, which will sometimes lead to frustration if you know what you need to do but your character moves too slippery to make it stick, the gameplay is very addictive. As you advance, upgrades are introduced, making you even more efficient at your job, though areas get harder as well. While there’s already a fair bit of gameplay there, those seeking a challenge are free to be on the hunt for the hidden collectibles scattered around the levels. With the level select option, it’s also easy to go back and replay levels for a better time or with fewer deaths.

Conclusion

 

Ghostrunner managed to deliver on all it had promised. A great look, its cyberpunk aesthetic, and action sequences that feel as if they belong in a movie all blend together perfectly. After you get the hang of the controls, this game will be hard to put away again, granted you can deal with the frustration that comes with dying a lot.

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 10.0/10 (2 votes cast)
VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: +1 (from 1 vote)
Ghostrunner - Review, 10.0 out of 10 based on 2 ratings
Jessica


Games are my escape and writing is my passion.

1 Comment

  1. Ibuki
    December 5, 2020, 03:44

    This one looks quite ‘badass’. A violent Mirror’s Edge basically.

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