May 27, 2022

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New horror from the creators of The Evil Inside

The most noticeable thing about Ghostwire Tokyo It is the city character that gives the game its title. The city speaks to us, expresses its consciousness and grandeur, walking hand in hand through the neon-lit streets, among the piles of rubbish being dumped on the edges of the streets, in the glorious holy places, the symbol of the distant past, and in the sterile skyscrapers, the emblem of the luxurious present. Moving between buildings, entering the complex managed by Yokai felini, visiting apartments furnished in typical Japanese style or sliding off the rooftops, admiring the Tokyo skyline and enjoying the slightest cultural and artistic nuance of the city are precisely the activities that give Tango Gameworks a unique charm, In constant balance between realism and folklore (to learn more here, Ghostwire Tokyo Special: Between Japanese Mythology and Folklore).

The absolute spirit envisioned by the authors of The Evil Whitin It is far from being a flawless product in every aspectThe sum of its component parts, however, is greater than the playful grit that sometimes appears during exploration and combat. Ghostwire Tokyo exudes an all-Japanese vibe, filled with humor, psychodrama, social criticism and a hint of horror. And in this mixture of subjects and nuances lies all its strength.

Yokai fight

Yes, Tokyo is uninhabited, but not without dangers. The Yokai who fill its streets are not all in equal danger, yet none of them are worth underestimating. There are those who act slowly, creatures that attack from a distance, spirits that strike from above, monsters that bicker with force, and demons that attack quickly and ferociously, despite their enormous size. Different types of brutal actions do not require a special tactical style of fighting, however it is advisable to always keep your guard, to dodge strikes in time while dodge and avoid being trapped.

To defend ourselves from the abominations of the underworld, we will be able to rely on the forces of the ether, the spiritual energy associated with wind, water, and fire. Through the motion of the hands, animated with colossal hypnotic elegance, we will cast initial bullets, long-range slashes and crushing grenades from our fingers, in such a way as to weaken enemies to reveal their essence, To extract it afterwards with an equal fiery finisher and send Yokai back to the afterlife. The choreography of engagements replaces tactics, but that penchant for the amazing isn’t necessarily attributable to its set of flaws: Ghostwire Tokyo aims to set up gameplay that’s smooth without being raw and intuitive without ever establishing itself as overly cliched. Each power has its own amount of magical ammo, and we won’t be able to tap it to the bitter end without first reloading it by eliminating demons during battle. In short, throwing yourself into battle with your head down does not guarantee a clear victoryand in fact in the advanced stages (and in the most complex of challenges) it may be effective to combine the use of ether with the effects of spells, some of which temporarily impede opponents’ progress or cover their field of vision.

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On certain occasions, the best solution to avoid being fatigued can be to act stealthily, avoid direct conflict, or strike from a distance with the bow provided. The possibilities offered by the combat system are certainly not limited, but they are not all equally satisfactory.

A battle against hordes of demons rarely puts you in a crisis, and in most cases the sense of accomplishment comes from the action’s dynamic and enveloping impact, rather than from a wholly motivating level of difficulty. We don’t deny that in the second half of the experience, once you unlock all the powers and get most of the skill tree skills, The flavour of clashes will become less tastyThus we believe that a more balanced level of complexity would make the adventure more satisfying.

Explore the city

The way Tango Gameworks has taken the exploration of Tokyo She looked smart enough. With the desire not to suggest a world full of action, nor a stretch that is too blurry, the studio led by Shinji Mikami presents a map of small dimensions, not completely accessible at once (here you’ll find our Exclusive interview with Shinji Mikami).

A mist of supernatural origin has in fact engulfed the city, blocking access to some areas: to move more freely, we will therefore have to purify the Torii gates scattered throughout the city, located next to the streets and on the roofs of buildings. buildings. In this way, the team suggests that we visit every corner of Tokyo a little bit at a time, even vertically, alternating between progressing the main task with completing a few secondary tasks, thus letting us know each macro area by heart.

Beautiful city to see and hearAs we told you before Ghostwire Tokyo . TestThe visual beauty of the game lies not in the artistic component but in its artistic direction. Six graphics options are available: Quality (with ray tracing at 30 fps), Performance (with 60 fps), High frame rate quality and performance, and HFR Quality and Performance with V-Sync activated. However, none of these looks offer a captivating look at the technological avant-garde. On the other hand, what often leaves you speechless is the undoubted charm of the capital, which, despite being uninhabited, seems paradoxically “alive” and very dense. Thanks also to the subtle artistic and vocal selections, with Yokai music, voices and verses helping to nourish anxiety, and excellent dubbing in Japanese and Italian. Finally, the applause goes to DualSense, whose use follows the same philosophy that characterizes nearly every aspect of the game: moderate, never offensive or excessive, but undoubtedly attractive.

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Furthermore, even with the fully unlocked map, it won’t take long to go from one extreme to the other, as all level design is designed to encourage moderate and very intense exploration of the triggers. This is made possible by the excellent reconstruction of the city, where each street has its own distinct characteristics, as well as by the skillful use of horror by Tango Gameworks. While horror is not the primary matrix of Ghostwire Tokyo, There is no shortage of brush strokes to worry about, when threatening shadows fall on the walls as we wander the neighborhoods, or when infernal marches suddenly appear before our eyes, they swallow us up in a parallel dimension from which we can escape only after each opponent is eliminated. The reasoning behind the narrative and exploratory progression of Ghostwire Tokyo rightly lies in this balance between content and extension, linear and freedom, horror and lightness: a balance capable of exorcising at least in part until the current spectrum of repetition, which sometimes harks back to the predicament of our games.

What can be done in the capital

Since Yokai has invaded the city, there is a lot of work to be done. First of all, it is necessary to save the souls that are unable to “pass” scattered in every corner of Tokyo: to do this we will need several katashiro paper dolls that serve as receptacles for spirits. The more we buy, the more orcs we will be able to combine at once, after which it will be necessary to dump the contents into a special phone booth that serves as a bridge between our world and the afterlife.

The process of recovering these lost souls is the least disguised activity of the entire production: their number is hundreds of thousands, and the feeling of repetition begins already after a few rescues; Not to mention that transforming souls rewards you with a large number of credits and experience points, Helps us get up too quickly (maybe too much). Fortunately, at the end of the game, an ability is unlocked that can significantly speed up this assembly process. The rhetoric is completely different regarding secondary missions: when we clear a neighborhood from the fog, new optional missions will always appear on the map, all featuring (some more, some less) subplot with a great Japanese look.

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This means that we will be able to find ourselves in situations that are steeped in deep drama, and others that are steeped in gilardia. Even with some qualitative deterioration, The side activities are witty and well calculated, not only because of the very limited duration, and thus fortunately not claustrophobic at all, but also because it has sufficiently diverse gameplay mechanics. In a few minutes we will be facing platform stages, ghost hunts, investigative analysis with our supernatural skills, last Yokai battles and very strange requests from somewhat queer spirits.

And along the town we’ll also come across cats and dogs, to be fed and followed for big rewards; Or we will have the opportunity to enter combos or buy stocks, katashiro, spells or food items for regeneration and health. Not forgetting that a careful exploration of the capital will reward us with statues or jewelry that are not only fanciful collectibles, but also valuables that some Yokai cats pay us generously. This is why Ghostwire: Tokyo enjoys being smart: without exaggerating it, For 15-20 hoursTango Gameworks proposes moderate, now carefree, now impactful tasks, but all united by a sprinkle of craziness.

Tokyo tales

Tokyo is a wonderful storyteller: A container of stories ranging from deep social problems to funny everyday ones. There are many layers of narrative in Ghostwire, and they are all worth discovering.

First of all, there’s the base story, the story of Akito and KK: the first is a 22-year-old student, the last survivor of Hania’s plan, a man who has taken the souls of the townspeople and kidnapped his sister. The protagonist, for reasons that you have to discover in the context of the plot; KK is instead the spirit of a former mysterious hunter, who infiltrates Akito’s body to continue the search for his old rival Hannya. The relationship between the two characters is the very powerful driver of this well-written supernatural drama, which constantly oscillates between irony, tragedy, horror, and dynamism. Between a well-defined supporting cast and valuable visual choices (the result of Tango Gameworks’ horror experience), Ghostwire story: Tokyo continues with a sequential rhythm, then speed up a little towards the end. The playful tones of the story and the quality of the scenario are also reflected in the secondary quests, which testify, in a nutshell, how fun it is to reveal all the subplots of the city, full of tormented souls, unfinished business and the elimination of phobias and unresolved fears.