Film, TV, book tie-in games are often non-too-good. Letís face it; the ones with an original story and a bit of thought are few and far between. Ghost Rider for the PS2 is one of those games. Itís not a movie tie-in but it has an original story that takes place after the movie.
It borrows from various other titles such as Devil May Cry
and God of War
. It even sneaks in a little bit of Road Rash
as you progress further through the game. Now you might think that it really needed to be original, but lets face it, weíre so many years into the gaming industry that mostly Ė itís been done before by someone else and if itís not broken, donít fix it.
We were not expecting, at least I wasnít. Some brand new fantastic bells and whistles version for a movie-tie in game.
The only game that blew me out of the water in that respect was the fantastic Chronicles of Riddick: Escape from Butcher Bay
that was a movie-tie in and stood well as a game in its own right.
So all this introduction aside, because really, what you want to know is simple. Is Ghost Rider for the PS2 worth getting or does it whimper out instead of blazing away?
The short answer is that itís a fun game that gets repetitive pretty quickly. It has a decent storyline thatís told through a slightly animated comic-book format, the panels scrolling onto the screen and so on. Iíd have personally liked to see a little in-game engine footage used for this but as is so often the case with games like Ghost Rider thatís usually an afterthought.
Itís a button mashing battle-fest that is action packed with similar enemies, some mini-boss types and a few nice touches in terms of the combat system. It employs the left stick for running around, the right stick is for dodging (can we say GoW Ė God not Gears, Ed.)
Ghost Rider has his trusty chain and he was swinging that well before Kratos, God Boy was on the scene. There are some special attacks and he even gets his Penance Stare ability. As Bonehead battles enemies they drop various kinds of orbs, souls or whatever you want to call them, Dante would be proud. These are collected and used to power up, or unlock things in the game.
Ghost Riderís new combat moves are learned from using the collected souls, and you can power up the various abilities in-game whilst playing, this makes levelling Ghost Rider fairly easy and a dedicated battler will have him at MAX in no time at all.
You can taunt enemies and the combat system is fast, furious and a lot of fun. Thatís the main point about the game, these borrowed game styles arenít anything new, but they actually work well for what the game is. It isnít a free-roaming title like the Spiderman 2
game was, or Hulk
and if thereís a sequel then I truly hope that Ghost Rider goes down this route.