While the basic gameplay is decidedly old school, this sci-fi third-person, side-scrolling shooter has some modern touches. In Ghost Song, you're a robot, or maybe a cyborg, who becomes reactivated on an alien world, but you know not which, when, or why. So you start exploring, only to find that amid all the caverns and platforms you have to navigate are some local residents who don't like you very much. Good thing you've got a gun for an arm, and legs that let you jump higher than you might expect, since there are tons of hazards to avoid, some of which are best done by doing just that: avoiding them. Even cooler, the atmospheric music are dark imagery give this a seriously freaky sci-fi vibe.
But while this shooter has you running and gunning like it's the mid-'80s and you're in an arcade -- or just running; some enemies are best avoided -- it does have some interesting modern touches. By killing enemies, you earn points you can use to improve your weapons, restore your health (though you do this in many other ways), or give yourself even more potential health. It's just too bad you don't get this currency more often. But then, sparseness seems to be an underlying theme in this game. Not only can it be really tough, but the checkpoints you go back to when you die are really, really spread out. And no, the supposedly easier mode isn't easy. Or even that much easier. Still, if you enjoy side-scrolling sci-fi shooters that don't go easy on you, Ghost Song will be a welcome challenge.