Ghosts 'n' Goblins Mobile

App review by
Paul Semel, Common Sense Media
Ghosts 'n' Goblins Mobile App Poster Image
Frustrating portable version of a tough arcade game.

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this app.

Ease of Play

While this uses simple touch controls, it's a notoriously difficult game.

Violence

Players use lances, fireballs, other weapons to kill zombies, monsters, but there's no blood, gore. When attacked, players initially lose their armor, then turn into skeletons that fall apart.

Sex

When attacked, our hero loses his armor, is shown in only boxer shorts.

Language
Consumerism
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Ghosts 'n' Goblins Mobile is a faithful recreation of a 1985 arcade game in which a knight battles zombies and other monsters to save the princess. But while he does this by throwing lances, fireballs, and other medieval weaponry, there's no blood or gore. There also are no curse words or sex, though when he's attacked, our hero does get stripped down to his boxers. This also features a variety of horrible creatures, but the pixelated artwork keeps them from being too scary. While the content may be safe for younger gamers, the game's difficulty might prove frustrating to some people. Read the app's privacy policy on the game's website to find out about the information collected and shared.

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What's it about?

In GHOSTS 'N' GOBLINS MOBILE, you play as the brave knight Arthur (no relation) who must fight his way through the undead and other monsters so he can rescue the princess from the demon king Astaroth. This is done by throwing lances, fireballs, and other medieval weapons at the living-impaired. Just don't miss, because if they hurt you, their first strike will destroy your armor, leaving you to run around in only your boxers, while their second will destroy your skin, leaving you to run around in only your skeleton.

Is it any good?

While this looks, sounds, and plays just like the notoriously difficult '80s arcade game, the intrusive button icons make it even tougher to play than it should be. Originally released in arcades in 1985, Ghosts 'n' Goblins Mobile brings this classic side-scrolling action game to tablets with all its vintage graphics, sounds, and gameplay intact. Playing as a knight on a quest to save the princess, you have to cut your way through a horde of the undead and other horrible creatures by throwing an endless supply of lances and other medieval weapons. This is easier than it sounds; this game is known for being as unforgiving as, well, demons who kidnap princesses for fun. It's also, unfortunately, undermined by its on-screen controls. Because the buttons take up so much of your tablet's screen, they block much of the action -- well, except for Type C, which removes the movement buttons, which makes it easier to move the wrong way. It also, annoyingly, resets back to the default controls when you start a new game. You also can't turn the music down or off, while the supposedly easier "casual" option isn't really much easier. Still, if you're a fan of this classic arcade game, are looking for a challenge, and don't mind that some of the challenge will come from having an obstructed view, by all means, have at it. But for us, we'll skip Ghosts 'n' Goblins Mobile and go find an arcade instead.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about violence in video games. Does it make a difference that you're fighting zombies and monsters in this game, as opposed to humans?

  • Talk about risking your life for someone else. In the game, you're risking yourself to save the princess, but is there anyone you'd risk your life for?

  • Discuss scary monsters and super creeps. Though they don't seem very scary, the creatures in this game are horrific; did you know some of them have their origins in real life? Would you like to learn about how the legend of zombies began?

App details

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For kids who love arcade games

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