What parents need to know
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that players use bullets and explosives to blast through humans and monsters in this first-person shooter. There is some light cursing and partial nudity as well. Also, the gameplay features a unique spirit-possession dynamic, though the supernatural action is never scary.
What's it about?
In GEIST, players assume the role of John Raimi, a scientist on a mission to destroy the Volks Corp., a shadowy entity that is conducting otherworldly experiments. Raimi gets caught in one of these experiments and his spirit is separated from his body. Players spend the better part of the game trying to defeat Volks and bring ghost and body back together. Raimi's spirit can posses a variety of people, animals, and even inanimate objects.
Before Raimi's ghost can take possession of a living host, he must scare it. This often sets up little puzzles: For example, players might posses a bowl of dog food to scare and posses a dog, then use the dog to scare a rat, then finally posses the rat and run through a crack in the wall. Players also will navigate the Volks underground laboratories and buildings as a possessed human.
Is it any good?
Puzzles become predictable, and it seems arbitrary which objects can be possessed and which are off-limits. With a few exceptions, the shooter levels will likely be routine and dull for anyone familiar with the genre. The violence also is typical of the genre: Players blast enemy humans and monsters with guns and explosives, although these scenes are not very graphic. In many ways, the game's attempts to create a gritty, mature atmosphere fall flat.
Geist includes an offline multiplayer mode that conforms to many first-person-shooter conventions. Players will blast friends or computer-controlled bots in deathmatch and capture-the-flag-type contests. The final problem?: Blocky, dated graphics and choppy slowdowns. Ultimately, players will find this to be an original first-person shooter haunted by repetitive gameplay.
Families can talk about...
Families can talk about the first-person-shooter genre. Are games more immersive when players look through the eyes of a protagonist? Do first-person games affect players differently than third-person games? Do shooting games have to be graphically violent?