As simple as the concept of Extreme Exorcism is, the actual experience is pandemonium.
Golden Ruby Games’ Extreme Exorcism tells a story about an exorcist trying to clear a house of its resident ghosts. It’s not Ghostbusters, though. It’s more like Rambo, as your arsenal consists of 20 weapons ranging from a baseball bat to a rocket launcher to a tiny little gun that shoots enormous bullets. There is, of course, also a twist. Whenever you do manage to kill a ghost, another ghost will spawn in the next round that mimics your every move from the previous round, up to and including picking up weapons and launching a slew of rockets around the board.
If you’ve played racing games, you’re probably familiar with the ghost cars that show you exactly how you made each turn and how fast in your previous (or best, in some cases) run on the map. Extreme Exorcism takes a very similar concept. The first round, you’ll need to kill a randomly-moving haunted chair or the like. When round two begins, you’ll see a ghost doing exactly what you did in the previous round. If you manage to kill it, in round three, you’ll have ghosts of yourself from rounds one and two. Once you get past round five or six, trying to remember just how you moved in all previous rounds becomes more or less impossible, and you’re stuck dealing with the seeming chaos of the ghost swarm. If you make it to round 10, well, let me just say good luck.
The house you’re trying to exorcise is made up of 10 rooms, each of which has five different floor plans for you to pick from, as well as a gimmick of some sort to differentiate it from the other rooms. These are the same boards available for what I strongly believe to be the most important part of the game; local multiplayer.
When you start a multiplayer game, two to four players will be dropped into the room where everybody will race to collect weapons and take down the other players before getting taken out themselves. The matches consist of multiple rounds, and every time you win a round, you get a ghost companion to help you in the next round. The multiplayer is highly customizable, with options for speed, gravity, weapon availability, and many, many more. If you only want to use explosives, you can do that. If you want to move twice as fast, have low gravity, and only have uppercuts and flying kicks as weapons, you can do that, too.
The single player experience is fun, no doubt, and the leaderboards give you something to strive for, but I suspect it will serve primarily as a training tool for many players who just want to compete with their friends locally. Regardless of whether you’re playing single or multi, within about three minutes of starting a game, you’ll swear you were in the mouth of madness.
Keep an eye out for Extreme Exorcism sometime in 2015 on PC, PS4, and Xbox One.