My full review of Ghosts Within is here. Capsule review:
Ghosts Within opens with a combination of familiar tropes. You awake in a dark forest with your memory fuzzy how exactly you got there. Wandering around, you meet a number of mysterious characters who give dodgy answers about their backgrounds and their relationships with the others.
The author went heavy on atmosphere and location for Ghosts Within. Fog comes and goes. Locales are bathed in moonlight. A young woman tends to her flowers in the middle of the night. You visit a rustic graveyard and a seemingly abandoned lighthouse. A hotel manager seems friendly enough, but she keeps glancing behind you as though someone just passed by, although no one else is in the lobby.
Ghosts Within is a game of exploration and conversation, with details gradually accumulating to reveal histories and submerged connections. It’s a rather large game for a first-time author. Most of my play time was spent wandering about and talking with the residents of Foghelm.
Almost all the jarring bugs are related to NPC interactions. For example, a man is nameless at one point, but after speaking to another character, he is known to you by name, but without introduction or the name being mentioned in the text. A nearby research facility can be a topic of discussion with another character, but again, I had no reason to know about it before that moment.
All said, I’m thoroughly impressed with Ghosts Within . Hats off to a first-time implementor writing a game that leans heavy on NPCs, conversations, and knowledge. Ghosts Within offers spookiness, tons of ambiance, and a gradual accretion of details that lead toward solving at least three mysteries: Who you are, why you’re there, and what really happened long ago in the village of Foghelm.