SpookWare is the latest title published by indie horror greats DreadXP who have catapulted into horror gamers hearts with the phenomenal Dread X collection, is SpookWare enough to further that run or does it leave them dead in the water?.
SpookWare sees you controlling the lovely bones of Lefti, Midi and Righti, 3 Skeletons who’ve had enough of wasting away and decide to improve their afterlives by enrolling in education and other situations which naturally lead to comedic and spooky situations.
The game narrative is wonderfully light hearted with allusions to something not quite what it seems but the revelation its building to isn’t actually available being that the game is actually episodic and currently only episode 1 is available resulting in only 4 playable chapters.
Graphically SpookWare emulates the look of titles like Paper Mario and Bug Fables by pulling off the paper cut out character models interacting with a 3D world and it works so so well, it gives the game such charm and coupled with the comedic writing and scenarios it really is enjoyable and endearing in the best way.
The music in SpookWare is a mixture of wonderfully cheery and eerie in equal measures, though nothing outside of the mini game switching jingle really stuck with me, voice acting is also non existent aside from the Oh Yeah and Oh No when you win or fail a mini game.
The gameplay loop of SpookWare sees you controlling our Skeletrio as they wander around the world trying to achieve something in their death, this usually involves very easy puzzles and talking to NPCs which introduce you to that chapters mini game gimmick.
The mini games are the king here and if you have ever played a Warioware game you’ll be right at home, each mini game has a quirk where they are easy enough to figure out in the few seconds you play them but they are also fun, some examples being defusing a bomb, filing taxes or choosing when to press the gas in correspondence to the traffic light.
There are 60 mini games to unlock between the prologue chapter and the 3 playable scenario chapters with much more coming judging off of the map screen.
I did at points feel that the field exploration sections were a little too much padding for a quick fire mini game collection but there was a lot of charm in the writing and the scenarios being as outlandish and goofy as they were that kept me going.
SpookWare is currently around 2 to 3 hours long with the promise of even more content in the future, I couldn’t find dates or even if it’s paid content but I cannot wait to dive into this zany world for a little longer and uncover the mystery alongside the addictive mini games.
Like your favourite Halloween treat, sweet but short lasting
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Straight from the streets of SouthTown, all Dunks Powah'd and ready to Bust A Wolf. Catch me on Twitch/YouTube.