Electronic Theatre Preview: Geist

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Electronic Theatre ImageGeist for the GameCube has been long anticipated by many (including myself) and getting the chance to play it at this year’s Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) was one of the highlights. Although they only let us play the multi-player rather than the main game (grrr…) it gave us all a good taste of what to expect before it (hopefully) hits our shores by the end of the year.

 

The title is primarily is a First-Person-Shooter, where you play a geist. You can possess bodies which have a number of different weapons, so although there didn’t appear to be any weapons you could pick up there were a few to choose from if you swapped bodies. The main problem with doing that is, in the multi-player at least, it left the host body vulnerable to attack for two seconds after you left it leaving your opponent with an easy kill, which scuppers any ideas you have about just leaving your host body when you get low on health.

The controls are extremely intuitive; in the way seemingly only Nintendo knows how, and it was so easy to pick up it makes me wonder how some companies get it so wrong. You use the main analogue-stick to move and strafe and the smaller C-stick for looking around you. Couple this with using the R trigger to shoot and the A button for possessing a body (which you don’t use as much) and you have a set of great, if common controls – but it’s the spot-on analogue calibration that sets this title apart.

The effects when you possess a body are interesting, on your screen you go bright red for a short time which very clearly indicates you have entered a body so there is no confusion whether you are in solid form or not. When it comes to finding your opponent you can see very clearly small particles of light circling them so there is no hiding by standing still and pretending to just be an inanimate body.

This was a highly enjoyable game at E3 and judging from what was playable should provide a good gaming experience for anyone with a little purple (or black, or platinum) box under their TV.

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