Ghostrunner is an action platformer with a cyberpunk aesthetic and setting and is available this month on PS NOW. I haven’t really played a game quite like Ghostrunner up to this point in my life so it’s pretty tough to make any comparison to others. The closest thing I can probably think of is maybe like Titanfall 2 with some similar movement and platforming or Mirror’s Edge with the parkour aspects but even then, those 2 games don’t really encapsulate what Ghostrunner truly is.
Ghostrunner is all about the movement and precision where you platform your way through beautifully crafted levels moving up this big tower trying to stop this creepy lady named Mara. You are equipped with excellent yet simple move sets that allow you to be the best Ghostrunner you can possibly be. You can jump, dash, slide and wall run with plenty of power ups and items to assist you. You acquire power ups by going into the cyber world which really slows the pacing of the game and wasn’t really that fun for me to traverse through.
The power ups however are worth it as you get a sword dash which allows you to line up enemies and dash towards them, a sword blast which is one of your only projectile attacks, a force push which is probably the best and also a mind control move that allows you to hack an enemy for a short time to kill other enemies for you. You also get a grapple hook which you use quite often that turns you into a cyber Spiderman as you grapple and platform your way through the levels.
This game makes you feel like a speed demon badass at times because of the moves and precise platforming you do and the level design complements it perfectly. Ghostrunner however is hard as hell so it isn’t for everyone and you can’t turn down the platforming difficulty setting so if you don’t like hard games, I would suggest skipping this one. Everything can one shot you and I mean everything, getting hit by enemies, falling off ledges, saws, fire and robots.
So, when I say precision is key, I am not kidding as you can go from the perfect section where you tear enemies heads off and slam dunk on everything to a complete midlife crisis meltdown. In all honesty the game isn’t crazy hard and it is beatable but it’s just going to require lots and lots of retrying but trial and error is the name of the game. After playing sections 15 times, you start to get the layout and the feel of the enemy placements and you’re able to combat that.
There were some sections where I had over 100 deaths and yet I still had fun as it does provide a quick reset so it doesn’t disrupt your flow too much as well as the checkpoint placements are usually perfect and right where you would want them to be. There are plenty of different types of enemies that perform various attacks and present new challenges but you can also one-shot enemies. That being said sometimes the easiest of enemies present a difficult challenge simply because of how they are placed and in order to use those previously mentioned abilities you have to kill enemies to fill up your meter.
As you progress through the game the levels and enemies get harder but you also get better so it feels pretty gradual and balanced except for the final platforming sections of the entire game. Scattered throughout each level are hidden secrets for you to find like items, audio logs and different blades for you to use. The blades are pretty cool but it doesn’t really do anything as they’re just different skins. Finding and getting to the secrets however sometimes requires you to use your brain and observation skills.
It always felt good seeing a secret and then finding out how to get to it. There’s also a Tetris upgrade system where as you acquire new ones you have to place them inside the Tetris game. Each puzzle piece has its own unique upgrade so you get to choose what you want but it’s not a crazy in-depth system but it fits the game well. The boss fights throughout the game weren’t too terrible except for this one laser boss room.
The final thing I wanted to talk about was the story and my problem with the story was that important elements are told to you through dialogue from different characters but it’s really hard to care what they’re saying when you are trying to be a parkour badass. Ghostrunner has a pretty interesting story but the way it is delivered is hard to digest and pay attention to.
Ghostrunner is a prime example of why cut scenes are helpful or even just scripted sections which require no effort or thoughts as you can just absorb the information given to you. Overall, I really enjoyed this game as the gameplay and the movement are awesome, the level design is amazing and I love the cyberpunk aesthetic and off course the music slaps hard. Ghostrunner took me about 6.5 hours to complete and it is a really fun platforming action game that with enough patience and practice can turn you into a platforming god.
Ghostrunner has been permanently added to the PS NOW service.
Overall, I really enjoyed Ghostrunner as the gameplay and the movement are awesome, the level design is amazing and I love the cyberpunk aesthetic and off course the music slaps hard. Ghostrunner took me about 6.5 hours to complete and it is a really fun platforming action game that with enough patience and practice can turn you into a platforming god.