GAME REVIEW: Speed Dating for Ghosts

Developer: CopyChaser Games
Publisher: CopyChaser Games, Laundry Bear Games
Release Date (Initial): 02/13/2018
Platforms: PC/Mac, Nintendo Switch
Reviewed on the Nintendo Switch

SYNOPSIS

The title of this indie game is self-explanatory. The dating scene apparently never dies! This “dating simulator” takes you through several rounds of speed dating in the after-life. You do not get to chose your own character; however, it is clear that you are a ghost looking to mingle.

You are greeted by Fran, a pleasant specter with deer antlers, and she explains your choices. You can select one of three rooms–the Room of Black, the Room of Lyres, and the Room of Palms. Once you select a room, you go through two rounds with three different ghosts. After the rounds are complete, you select one ghost to go on a date with…and you find out if it goes well or not! These ghosts come in various forms and genders–there are no rules!

In this simple layout, I was shockingly impressed with the depth of backstory you get with several of these ghosts. For example, Vera, aka.The Lady in Smoke, reveals how she passed, and if you choose to go on a date with her, you see her heartache from losing her daughter come full circle. For a story vignette, my heart wrenched for her.

Another character, Hattie is an unassuming ghost that takes the form of…cotton balls? Bubbles? Regardless, she is curious to meet new ghosts and has a kind and giving nature. If you choose to spend more time with her, you end up visiting her old nursing home. It’s not romantic at all, but you come to realize why she always wants to go back…

The character that stood out to me the most was Gary. Perhaps the most frightening, Gary isn’t very sociable, and the date involves figuring out how he died. There is a significant twist here that I won’t reveal, but let’s just say that it literally made me jump in my seat (the vibration from the Switch was partially to blame for that)

Would you date Gary?

ANALYSIS

Speed Dating for Ghosts is a quick and simple sim game–a perfect fit if you are looking for casual play. It doesn’t demand much from the player; however, it still carries enough substance within the characters that kept me playing. In fact, I completed the mainline of Speed Dating for Ghosts in one sitting because of this.

The ghosts are hand-drawn, and the music is quirky. The written descriptions to set up each scene are well done.

There is decent replay value for this game as well. You can select various dialogue to play out the dates differently, and I’m not sure how to do this yet, but the Graveyard and Beach (places where you can view the graves of those you dated) still has blank tombs yet to be unlocked.

Even though I enjoy its simplistic nature, I do wish there dialogue tree could be expanded a little more and there were more ghosts to date. However, I feel that if I am craving more variety from Speed Dating for Ghosts, then they had created something great.

FINAL SCORE:

Speed Dating for Ghosts is a wonderful casual game to relax to. It’s your quintessential quirky indie game, and I applaud its creativity. My only wish was that there was more content and even more dialogue choices! If you need a break from your blockbuster AAA third-person shooter, try out Speed Dating for Ghosts.

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