MrCHUP0N / Member

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Conveniently, the Tricking comes way later.

Sort of fudged that last blog post title, eh?

In any case, I do talk about Ghost Trick: Phantom Detective a bit with Al on this weekend's podcast (still in the editing room), but I'll spend a few words here.

At a high level it deals with classic point-and-click adventure tropes, mainly the "see what this thing does that allows you to do that thing that activates this other thing to get you where you need to go and by the way you might mess up so be ready for some trial and error" aspect. However, the presentation of it all combined with the density and quantity of tasks you need to do in a given area or restricted time frame makes it feel that much more like you're kind of prancing around this Rube Goldberg machine, possessing inanimate objects and manipulating them in a specific way in order to allow you to manipulate more inanimate objects so that you can manipulate those... and on. And on. You get it. (I think...?)

It's definitely a fascinating experience, and a great deal of it has to do with the fantastic animation, which is so thorough that it's difficult for you to miss what's going on. The animations really do help you figure out how to solve some of the puzzles within the game, because they're made to look so obvious while feeling totally natural within the game's universe that you start to instinctively say, "Wait a second--that branch totally bent in this very particular way when I weighed it down slightly. What if I weighed it down with something even heavier?"

The points where I worry are where you're actually manipulating an honest-to-god Rube Goldberg machine. This isn't a "bad" thing, mind you--and perhaps the inclusion of such puzzles is the game's tongue-in-cheek way of showing us self-awareness. But it does take me out of the moment a little. What's fascinating to me about this game is solving the Rube-Golderg-ness of the environments it creates, not dealing with an actualRube-Goldberg machine.

Nevertheless, the game isn't really weaker for it, and I can't wait to keep digging myself deeper and deeper into the story (I think I'm at Chapter 11 or something). If you can find it for cheap on DS, or have access to an iOS device, get on it posthaste.