Geist (GameCube) Preview

By 11.01.2004 2

Take a genre, that has long been looking for something new, and implement an innovative idea into it and you can only get a brilliant game, right? Well, that seems to be the philosophy of Geist, and at the present moment, the game looks very pleasing.

Geist, meaning ghost is a game based upon many different ideas, the main is an FPS, but with a very unique addition that differentiates this FPS, from the rest, the standard of the console age. This difference comes in the form of being able to play as a poltergeist, or ghost. No- its not a first person remake of Luigi's Mansion, if anything it couldn't be further from it. Nintendo are trying to shake the childish aura that surrounds them, and replace it with a more mature reputation as games publisher that can create 'cool' games as well. Then, there is the other half of Nintendo, the other half that keeps on releasing games such as Doshin, (cel-shaded) Zelda and others. Whilst, this maybe all good and well but Nintendo need to strive forward, make progress within the industry as they are beginning to and release games like these in moderation.

The FPS genre is a vast genre- so; to build up characteristics on Geist you need to obviously knows the type of FPS it is and be aware of what it consists of. Now, Geist isn't Unreal Tournament, by no means, Geist is not an all out frag-fest frenzy of a game, nor it is, though an extremely strategic FPS such as Conflict Desert Storm. Geist is not an adventure-FPS as Metroid Prime was either, though this would be a better way to phrase the game than any other. N-Space have implemented other ideas, than just shooting out foes such as simple puzzles, the possessing elements and the ability to use your form and shape to your advantage. When playing as the ghost who longs for a body of flesh and bone, you can creep or, float maybe through slits and cracks in walls as well as many other abilities.

Screenshot for Geist on GameCube

To add yet more variation to the usual sniping out and progression against your enemies, you have the option to possess them. This can make the game much easier and harder, gaining clearance is good when playing as a useful character, but becoming a guard, that you have just wiped out by a hail of bullets isn't as he will have low health and ultimately make you vulnerable. The gameplay isn't too strategic, but it has got an element of thought that is pleasing and provides a nice and welcome alternative to mindless fragging. This said, being a ghost won't mean you have an easy ride- oh no, this ghost is most certainly mortal and when shot in turn receives a substantial decrease in health, which is displayed in the lower left hand corner of the screen.

Screenshot for Geist on GameCube

The game will consist of a whole arsenal of different weapons and items that will be completely at your disposal. Many of these weapons are exclusive to one person, and this item or weapon may be needed to progress, so possessing them there and then would be quite a good idea. This though, isn't quite as simple as it seems, you aren't indestructible, and you can't just possess people so easily. Some may require different forms of scaring and taunting to make them able to possess.

Aside from just utilizing there weapons and items to aid your attack and infiltration throughout the game, you can go much deeper into the person that you have possession over and see there memories! This gives key hints and elements to the game, and could be used for many different purposes that are not yet known of.

Screenshot for Geist on GameCube

Graphically, Geist looks very pleasing. Effects can be found everywhere on this game, from blood stain covered rooms, to blurred Ghost effects when the player is in Geist form. Naturally, there is a lot of development into the way games look, and Geist is no different, whilst still in a relatively early build, the game shown so far does look very nice. Realistic would sum up the graphically aspects of the game well, what with crumbling walls and more relating to showing the games depth in the possession idea. The character, when left alone might play about with there gun, alerting you quickly that you are no longer in ghost form, or the lacking of the blur throughout the game that you will become used to.

Multiplayer, or the lacking of it was on of the many problems in Metroid Prime, that although not expected to feature one, did leave a sour taste and an empty side to the game. Thankfully though, N-Space have announced that there definitely will be multiplayer Death Match options etc. How deep and long lasting will the multiplayer be though, it is rumoured to feature a LAN option which although relatively likely, given the Gamecube's sudden surge of LAN able games it doesn't mean it is 100% practical. Then, what will the multiplayer see, well, it definitely will have death matches with the likely sub modes such as Capture the Flag, Team Death Match etc. but surely a game like this deserves something more than a linear Death Match mode? What about a Co-operative mode, implementing the games different features into one Co-operative mode that sees you and a mate or three playing out the story, level by level.

Screenshot for Geist on GameCube

Final Thoughts

Geist is a very interesting FPS, to say the least. It will certainly aid Nintendo's quest to change their image, in the same way GoldenEye did, and this game certainly has the potential to be one of the very elite games of 2004. With graphics that look good, and can only get better, gameplay that promises to be intuitive and interesting along with the option to possess others throughout the game and the rumour of a co-operative mode, Geist looks set to be a brilliant game.






First Person Shooter



C3 Score

Rated $score out of 10  8/10

Reader Score

Rated $score out of 10  9/10 (5 Votes)

European release date Out now   North America release date Out now   Japan release date None   Australian release date Out now   


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