Upcoming WiiWare release GhostSlayer wants to put the power to vanquish spirits in your hand, and we've had a word with Lim Ming Jie, the game's producer, on exactly how they intend on doing so.
What's the premise of GhostSlayer? Who are these ghosts and why do they need slaying?
Lim Ming Jie: The Ghost Queen is the most vicious and powerful ruler of the underworld. To forbid her from doing evil, she had been confined in Hell by the gods for thousands of years. Unfortunately she manages to escape one day.
The ghosts are summoned by the Ghost Queen. Some are summoned from the skeletal remains of ancient soldiers while others are tormented souls that followed the Ghost Queen from Hell. The ghosts have laid waste to a nearby town within a week, bringing destruction to anything they come in contact with. It is up to the player to put a stop to her reign of chaos. Players will play as a GhostSlayer, one who has ability to banish evil spirits through the use of a magical sword.
Why does the Ghost Queen want to destroy the world? It sounds like she has some issues she needs to work through.
LMJ: Yes, I guess she has some issues. There is always an ultimate evil character that tries to destroy the world in many games. The Ghost Queen has been confined in hell for ages and she wishes for nothing more than that everyone join in her suffering. She can’t wait to release her wrath onto the mortal world when she found the gateway - the well through which she could escape from hell.
We've busted ghosts and slayed vampires, but never slayed ghosts (or busted vampires, we suppose). How exactly does one go about slaying ghosts?
LMJ: The main character carries a magical sword with which he can harness the power to expel evil spirits. The concept of slaying ghosts with the sword derives from an ancient Chinese belief that evil spirits can be dealt with the same way as human enemies. Some old Taoist charms also depict legendary figures slaying ghosts with their sword.
How is the game set up? Is it a Punch-Out!!-esque sword fighter or will players be able to move around as well?
LMJ: It’s a Punch-Out!!-esque sword fighter on rails. The character will move about but players will not be able to control his movement. In this way, players are able to fully concentrate on just the fighting and not worry about movement.
Which came first, GhostSlayer or MotionPlus?
LMJ: Wii MotionPlus came first. We wanted to take advantage of the technology of the Wii MotionPlus to create an action game with the sensation of slaying and vaporizing ghosts.
The game's atmosphere seems to be shaping up quite spookily. What games, works, eras, et al influenced the art direction?
LMJ: With GhostSlayer, we wanted to portray a spooky feel since it’s a ghost slaying game. Because we wanted the game to appeal to a wide audience, we initially went with a cute and stylized art direction. We quickly realized that this did not work and we eventually decided to go with a slightly more realistic approach to better bring out the atmosphere of the game.
Is there a leveling/upgrade system in place?
LMJ: Yes, there is a simple upgrade system that improves the power meter and unlocks new swords for the player to wield. We decided against a more complicated upgrade system to make the game accessible to a larger number of players.
How about multiplayer support?
LMJ: There is no multiplayer support for the current game. We will definitely consider multiplayer support if there is a sequel.
When can players expect to have a go at subduing the Ghost Queen's appetite for destruction?
LMJ: Players can expect to have a feel of the game soon. The development of the game has been completely finished. We will announce the release date as soon as we receive confirmation from Nintendo.