Ghost in the Sheet
Ghost in the Sheet is an unusual point-and-click adventure game for Windows that drops the conventions of item management in favor of supernatural abilities. There is no inventory, as you don't pick up and carry objects in this game. Instead you gain a battery of ghostly powers that allow you to interact with the environment just like a flesh-and-blood human. It's a refreshing take on the adventure genre with a good sense of humor, unique puzzles, and a captivating game world.
As the titular ghost in the sheet, you play a man who was hit by a bus and finds himself in a sort of limbo, held together by nothing more than a sheet draped over his being. A ghost catching organization immediately recruits him to investigate why the souls of deceased mortals on Earth aren't reaching the afterlife. Your quest begins in an abandoned factory where you'll learn the ropes of adventuring without a solid form.
Because of your ghostly status, carrying items, pushing objects and interacting with the environment is pretty much impossible. Fortunately you learn supernatural abilities that take their place. You start with Telekinesis that allows you to move objects around a room. As you explore you'll learn how to push/pull things, light darkened rooms, and much, much more. Most of the puzzles in the game take full advantage of your ghostly limitations and are centered around using supernatural abilities in creative ways.
Analysis: Ghost in the Sheet bends the adventuring conventions at the source with the lack of inventory and direct item manipulation. This adds a great puzzle flavor to what would normally be simple tasks. For example, if you need to get an object from one room to another, most games would let you pick it up and start walking. As a ghost, however, that's no simple matter, forcing you to get creative and watch your environments very closely. Also, this is one of those adventure games where jotting down notes isn't a bad idea, so have a pen and paper ready.
It seems like every casual game has to have minigames these days, and Ghost in the Sheet follows suit with a few of its own. Some of them are rather crude and disgusting, whereas the rest are simply forgettable. They're all easily skipped by tapping the [backspace] key, which is a feature many more casual game developers should take note of.
The atmosphere in Ghost in the Sheet is perfectly suited for the story at hand, and locations are well-drawn and pull you right in. The voice acting is entertaining (though sometimes a bit stiff), and you really appreciate the main character's sense of humor about his odd situation, reflected in some of his off-beat comments.
Ghost in the Sheet gets everything right as an adventure game and it manages to lose some of the dryness associated with the genre. The new take on an old theme works wonders. Unfortunately our affiliate doesn't offer a demo for Ghost in the Sheet due to its rather large file size, but if this review grabbed your interest, you won't be disappointed with the full version.
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