FTW Staff Picks - Ghost Stories December 13 2016

For The Win Board Game Cafe's Staff Picks is a weekly series where we take a quick look at some of the staff's favourite games, old and new.

 

Ghost Stories

Genre: Cooperative

Designer: Antoine Bauza

Player Size: 2 to 4 Players

Game Length: 60 minutes

For fans of: Pandemic, Robinson Crusoe

With every hobby comes challenge. With every challenge comes masochism. In competitive gaming, the challenge comes from your competitors. In cooperative gaming, the challenge comes from the game. People like Pandemic and Forbidden Island because they're games that give you a sense of accomplishment as you succeed. But sometimes that's not enough. Sometimes people want a game that will punish them to the ground, with a small semblance of chance at victory. 

Ghost Stories is a game where players work together to exorcise ghosts and demons, in order to protect their village. Like many cooperative games, there is a ramp of difficulty over the course of the game. It just so happens that Ghost Stories ramp looks more like an elevator than an escalator. Right away the game surrounds you in a very claustrophobic sense. A wrong step at any point of the game could very well seal your fate. 

Hope is not really a concept that exists in Ghost Stories, primarily just drear and doom. And considering the subject matter, it's kind of appropriate. Of course, when things start to work in your favour you are almost just waiting for the game to betray you again. And if you somehow manage to find the game too pleasant (what's wrong with you?) the game offers two additional difficulty levels: Nightmare & Hell.

You may be wondering, after all of our gloom surrounding this game, why would we place it in our FTW Staff Picks. Well, like many things in life the things that challenge us the most are often the ones most worth facing. Even if it doesn't appear that way immediately. I didn't just want to beat Ghost Stories, I needed to. Hopefully you too will find fortune on your quest for glory. Good luck!

 

Earl