Monday, 3 October 2016

Return Of The Gruesome Games! - The Haunted Mansion (PS2)

Okay, the Return Of The Gruesome Games! I'm doing away with numbers for this year's lot, as like I said in the last post I'm not sure how many games I'll be able to cover...

Lets get straight into it with this little hidden gem though!

The Haunted Mansion (Playstation 2)

I stumbled across this game in a charity shop a couple of months ago, and thought I'd pick it up so I could review it for the blog. I really didn't know what to expect from it, but seeing as it's based on the DisneyWorld ride I thought it would be a pretty rubbish kiddie-friendly game....

I was pleasantly surprised then, to discover that although the game is pretty easy and would be happily played through by younger gamers, it's also surprisingly fun and has some rather well designed puzzle levels that will keep any gamer entertained as they play through!

You take on the role of Ezekiel Halloway (Zeke for short), a young man who finds himself jobless in post-Civil War New Orleans. Seeing an ad for a caretaker at an old mansion, he decides to apply for the job, only to discover upon arrival that the mansion is populated by a load of old spooks! This causes poor Zeke to faint, and upon reawakening he finds a crystal ball which harbors the spirit of Madame Leota chatting away to him...

She informs Zeke that an evil man named Atticus Thorn has trapped 999 souls in the mansion, as part of his plan to take over the Afterlife, and he must be stopped! Zeke agrees to help out, and is given the Beacon Of Souls, a mystical lantern that can capture the souls, and also fire out light to battle the evil ghosts and nasties Thorn has unleashed...

And so you move from room to room, battling nasties while trying to turn on the lights! Once the lights are on you can search objects to free the spirits which you can then suck up. A certain number of spirits are required to open each door around the mansion, which helps prolong gameplay a bit.

There are also six spirits who have Soul Gems that can power up the lantern, and they'll be willing to help out if you can find the pieces of their Death Certificates and present them to them!

By far the best thing about this game though is the puzzles! There's a wide range of nicely put together set pieces, such as being shrunken down and placed on a pool table, or grabbing spiders webs whilst being blown down a corridor, or starting up musical instruments to add to a tune to wake up the spirits in the music room! 

It's all very enjoyable, and a pleasant surprise! Sure it's not going to win any best game ever awards, and it's really quite easy, but it's still very worth playing as an enjoyable spooky adventure, just right for Halloween! 

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