Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Ghost Squad (Wii) Review

Despite coming out in 2007, this review is actually brand-new. I'll have another game that came out that year later this month. However, it's much bigger. That isn't to say Ghost Squad for Wii isn't worth a look, right?

Have A Ghost of A Chance

In 2004, a crack military unit was sent to arcades for a crime they didn't commit. They promptly escaped from a maximum security stockade to the United States underground. Today, still wanted by gamers, they survive as soldiers of fortune. If you have a problem, if no-one else can help, and if you can find them, maybe you can hire... the Ghost Squad. Yes, the Ghost Squad's code is to never leave a trace, and through forest retreats, presidential airplanes, and steamy jungles, the Ghost Squad intend to do just that.

The gameplay itself of Ghost Squad is a light-gun shooter. You have no control over where you're looking-- just where you aim. You point the Wii remote at targets, fire with the B button, and reload by pointing away from the screen. This is all the while blasting baddies to smithereens for points (head shots are worth more), collecting items in the form of health, magazine expansions, and body armor, and avoiding shooting hostages who will take health of you if you hit them. If you lose all your health, you can continue and leap back into the game albeit with points deducted from your current score. You get a Quick Shot bonus for hitting an enemy as soon as they pop up on the screen. Enemies with a flashing red target on them need to be neutralized quickly or they'll damage you. They're to be top-priority for any Ghost Squad elite.

From cabin bedrooms...

With only three missions, Ghost Squad is more about quality than quantity. Each time you successfully complete a given mission, you open up an advanced version which features more enemies in different locations as well as new choices to make in-game. When you reach a point in a level, you'll receive a choice of what action to take. You can decide to rescue some hostages, or you can be the team to defuse a time bomb. What choice you choose affects the path through the level you take. To get 100% on a mission, you'll have to complete the mission some-twenty times as well as explore all the mission's branching paths.

Additionally there's mini-games of sort to accomplish where you only have a narrow window of time to complete them. These include sniper missions where you have to take out bad dudes from afar, support missions where you try to fend off foes before they can take out your men, as well as enjoyable hand-to-hand combat where you point at the screen to block attacks before the baddie gets a shot on you. Sometimes failing these can be good, however, because they'll take you through alternate paths in the levels.

...to booby-trap infested jungles.

At the climax of each mission, you'll have to take on a boss. These range from locking onto a copter with your homing rocket launcher to shoot it down, achieving a head shot on an escaping boss, or pelting a foe with grenades and rounds of gunfire to defeat him. It can be annoying because all of these encounters are timed or very easy to fail. This means if you fail a mission after playing through the 3-9 minutes it takes to reach him, your work is almost for naught. You have to play through the same level on a different session of playtime. Also, playing through the same three levels with little variation each time can get swiftly monotonous.

At the end of each gameplay session (which takes a half hour at the most), your total points are tallied up, and you'll have the option to compare them with the rest of the world via Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection. It's as simple as offering your score to be posted, seeing if it's high enough to be placed on the leaderboard, and being done all within ten seconds or so. You also gain experience points from how well you did. Each level you gain can reward you with new guns, costumes like the cute panda costume, and new ranks. This is where the longevity comes in, and being able to play with two players is a source of near-endless fun.

Up to four players can blast away at enemies together.

Ghost Squad is a fantastic pick-up and play shooter. If you're looking for some mindless, corny entertainment, there's few games on Wii that can be beat in this regard. It's immediately accessible for newer gamers and has an acceptable amount of depth for video game veterans via the leveling system and branching mission paths. Add on the budget price, and the miniscule amount of missions isn't so bad. Ghost Squad is a recommended purchase.

[SuperPhillip Says: 7.5/10]

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