Have you heard? There's a fancy evening dinner party at a stately mansion, and you're invited! But you know, these things would be a lot more fun if we could throw one that didn't involve the wealthier guests falling over dead partway through. Get ready to party the night away with cute talking bats, chic clairvoyant goth girls and giant malfunctioning robots in Tuan & Marshall's premiere afterlife adventure mystery, Ghost Party!
Since you're a ghost already, you have less to be personally concerned about when it comes to guests suddenly collapsing unexpectedly into their soup. Instead, you'll be wafting through the mansion with the [arrow] keys gathering clues as to whodunnit. (No, not this one. We've already sorted out what happened there.) You can also use [space] to
interview listen in on the various guests. Influencing events to keep everyone you can alive — which Miss Manners advises us is a very important element of hosting a successful event — is a little more difficult, as nearly all the mortals don't see you. Much of your afterlife is spent finding obscure items or clues that various people need, and then being utterly incapable of getting it to them because they're not on your plane of existence. Well, not yet at least! But where there's a will there's a beneficiary, and Ghost Party has come up with some clever means of getting around that. You can also bring up information about your inventory with [esc], as well as saving and loading.
With an 8-bit Nintendo look-and-feel and an inventory-based Infocom sort of gameplay dynamic, playing Ghost Party really starts to feel a little like Maniac Mansion — if you could keep playing after you've managed to kill off all the kids. It was built in RPG Maker, the same engine that's been used to bring us so many other indie games. It's fairly short and can be solved in under an hour, but features three possible endings. For a game put together by two people taking a few random weeknights out of their schedule to make it — including all the graphics and music — it really gives a sense of how solid RPG Maker is, and what can be made with it. So get set to party with the night life, high life, lowlife and afterlife in Ghost Party!
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