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Published on October 29th, 2016 | by Dakoda Barker

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Kissy Ghost PC Preview

Kissy Ghost is a rare breed of game these days: the local multiplayer. Playing games while sitting beside your friends is great fun, but the rarity of games that support this means that the act itself has gained a mythic quality—it has become A Big Deal™ in its rarity. And in a fortunate turn, I managed to assemble a room full of friends at the same time as Kissy Ghost came into view.

The general premise is simple: four wizards are messing about with magic, as they are wont to do, and something goes wrong. One of the wizards is turned into an unreasonably affectionate ghost. The remaining wizards must assemble items for a counter-spell, all while avoiding the ghost and furniture temporarily brought to life by the ghost’s smooching.

It’s cute—once you look past the horrifying notion that one of the wizards has presumably died in a catastrophic magical accident and is now bringing furniture to life with kisses. The nonviolent interaction is something I like—aggression need not be our only tool in videogames—but there are some holdovers that can be read weirdly. Each of the wizards has several hearts representing the number of times they can be hit by furniture; while the hearts are obviously supposed to invoke ideas of love, hearts have traditionally been used in videogames to denote ‘lives’—ergo, the wizard-suddenly-turned-ghost could easily be interpreted as inadvertently murdering the other wizards. Not so cute from that perspective, but probably not a connection you’ll make without being a few gins deep.

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But playing Kissy Ghost is fun. There’s just the hint of intensity while playing—enough to be having fun, but not enough to be stressed—and play takes very little time. You can pick it up, play a few rounds, and put it down to move onto the next thing quite easily. Which is not a criticism—party games need not occupy the audience for hours upon hours. Variety is the spice of life and sometimes a bunch of neat, easily consumable games is what the audience wants.

The version I played was a slightly older demo build, which doesn’t have the full spread of features, but represents the crux of the play experience. Theoretically, this is fine. However, I had one issue that put a big dampener on the whole experience: I don’t have the spare USB ports to actually play four person Kissy Ghost. This was compounded further by the keyboard controller not seemingly having a button bound to the interact; as a wizard, all I could do was run, forever, fruitlessly hoping to evade the affectionate ghost.

I could play as the ghost, though, and smooch the hell out of some furniture; even in that brief, limited capacity, I can see Kissy Ghost being a well-loved distraction when I have friends around for a relaxing evening. But there’s still some distance to go before Kissy Ghost is ready for you.

Kissy Ghost is currently on Steam Greenlight; I gave it a vote. If you like the sound of it, you can too.

Game Details
Developer: Dog Dad Studios
Publisher: Dog Dad Studios
Genre: Casual / Party
Platform(s): PC
Rating: Not rated


About the Author

Dakoda is a doctoral student researching the intersection between videogames and chronic health conditions. He plays, critiques, and makes games. Other hobbies include eating too much sushi. His Twitter is @JiroJames.



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