Spookware (Episode 1) – Review
Follow Genre: Narrative Adventure, Arcade
Publisher: Dread XP
Platform: PC
Tested On: PC

Spookware (Episode 1) – Review

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Good: Great design and gameplay
Bad: Unreleased episodes
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Rating: 10.0/10 (1 vote cast)

WarioWare is a beloved long-running series by Nintendo where the titular character and his friends face series of microgames with a limited number of lives. Throughout the years, a handful of games following this formula have been released, with Spookware being the latest. Themed around horror tropes and adding its own spin with a complete story, is it enough to be a fresh new take on the genre?


Spookware’s story follows a trio of skeleton brothers, or “skelebros” for short, called Lefti, Midi, and Righti, as they leave their basement to embark on a road trip. While not a marvel of storytelling, Spookware’s narrative is an enjoyable and lighthearted adventure filled to the brim with horror-related puns and skeleton jokes. The complete game will contain four separate episodes, each divided into three chapters, of which the first is currently available.

Throughout this first episode, the skelebros will enroll in school and graduate, solve a murder mystery and even open their own restaurant. In each of the different chapters, the trio will also be able to interact with a wide cast of NPCs in order to progress the story or simply enjoy their quips and jokes. The narrative is not disconnected within the chapters either, featuring a few recurring characters and constant throwbacks to the previous parts.


The game’s graphics are a lovely combination of 2D characters and 3D environments made of paper-like textures. All the different chapters feature a unique setting and theme, which also applies to the visual design of the microgames themselves. Said microgames are also clearly differentiated from each other, allowing players to easily identify them.


Spookware’s sound design boasts a rather good soundtrack and SFX, featuring a wide array of both tracks and sounds. That said, the different songs in the OST tend to blend into the background at times, being somewhat similar to each other with a handful of standouts.


As previously mentioned, Spookware’s gameplay consists of playing series of microgames with a set quantity of lives. Between the microgame sections, players will also be able to freely explore their current location and obtain achievements or new microgames by interacting with props and NPCs. While the genres of the microgames themselves vary, the general classification of the game would be in the arcade and adventure genres, due to each of its main parts respectively.

The objective during the exploration segments will see the skelebros looking for a variety of NPCs and more often than not playing a microgame with them. Out of the three chapters, the second is the one with the largest focus on exploration, turning it into an investigation where players will collect clues to interrogate suspects.

Once the exploration section ends, the microgame one will begin, giving players three lives to face a succession of nine microgames in random order. This consists of six normal speed minigames, three faster ones, and a “boss” stage. During the normal microgames, players will lose a life upon making a single mistake, but this increases up to three mistakes during bosses. Upon losing all three lives, the succession will begin anew, shuffling the games yet again. Throughout the chapters, the control mechanics for the microgames will also vary, with the first being based around rhythm, the second around mouse-only controls, and the third around food.

Similar to how the second chapter is the one to incorporate exploration the most, the third is arguably the one that presents you with the most microgames. The whole chapter will see the player going around town finding NPCs in order to obtain recipes (aka new microgames) for the restaurant the skelebros will be running. After each part in this chapter, the skelebros will have to serve during the dinner rush, attempting to provide food to customers before their patience runs out.

Additionally, once the microgames featured in a chapter have been beaten, players will have the option to go back to the tutorial area and “remix” them. Doing so will allow them to replay all microgames they choose, with changed features and in any order. The remix function also doubles as a sort of “training grounds”, thanks to the unlimited retries it offers.


Spookware is a very entertaining game that offers a good five hours of quality content, despite being only the first chapter. Those looking for something unique and easily playable in short bursts, or those simply interested in arcade fun, will surely find it here. Priced at €10,79/$12.99/£10.29, the game is rather cheap for the quality offered, although it hasn’t been disclosed if later chapters will require additional payment.

Personal Opinion

“I have to say I had a jolly good time playing Spookware. The game is lighthearted and dynamic enough that I could just breeze through the chapters having a bunch of laughs at the slew of puns that were thrown at me. As someone who enjoys getting achievements, I’ll also say that finding everything this game had to offer was actually simple but fun, unlike many other games. The hardest achievements were trying to perfectly beat the microgame sections without losing lives, although the difficulty was still fair; and being able to quickly restart really helped. Anyways, I thoroughly recommend giving Spookware a shot, and I’ll definitely be looking forward to the other chapters.”

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Spookware (Episode 1) - Review, 10.0 out of 10 based on 1 rating

No longer writing for the site, pursuing other things.

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