Backlog Quest II: Day 9 – Spirit Camera: The Cursed Memoir – Who you gonna’ call?

01-09-13_bq_2_review_spirit_camera

Dear Journal,

Today I fought evil spirits with a camera.

Spirit Camera is a game that could really only exist on the 3DS. Making use of the 3D camera, Spirit Camera is an Augmented Reality game that has you interacting with an AR book (The Cursed Memoir) and fighting spirits in the comfort of your own home. Though interesting, the final product is mixed.

Most of the game is spent looking at various pages of the book attempting to uncover the mystery of the book, the lady in black and of course a female spirit friend that is guiding you. This mostly consists of pointing the 3DS at the AR book and seeing what happens, though occasionally there is a sort of mini-game associated with the AR book as well.

"Say cheese."

“Say cheese.”

When not browsing through the book for clues, you are probably battling a spirit released from the book. This typically involves holding your 3DS and doing circles while standing in the room to position the camera towards the spirit. Once you find it, you stay focuses on it to build an attack and when the moment is right take a photo and attack. Though some variants on what you have to do to expose the spirit and so forth do come about, this is pretty much the whole story as far as combat goes.

Oooooh scary!

Oooooh scary!

Most of the game is actually spent talking to the girl you “rescue” from the book, and attempting to figure out who she, and the lady in black is. See, the lady in black likes to take people’s faces. Generally speaking, not cool. So obviously she doesn’t want to go back to the world of the book, nor does she want anyone else to suffer that fate and of course you are trying to avoid that as well.  The story, is mostly forgettable, but it does set up the premise for why you are looking through this book fairly well.

You seriously spend like 3/4 of the game just talking to her.

You seriously spend like 3/4 of the game just talking to her.

Ultimately, Spirit Camera feels like a fairly simple and fairly short test run of this type of game.  It lacks depth and moving around with the 3DS and trying to use the AR book (requires good lighting and a flat surface) seems to even fly in the face of why we play on mobile devices. Quite frankly, there is no playing Spirit Camera on the bus or a plane.  It is definitely an interesting use of the technology, and by far the most interactive and in-depth use of the AR feature mostly used for AR cards so far. You won’t want away with much from Spirit Camera, but it is just short enough to make the experience mostly enjoyable and probably worth trying out just to see a very different type of 3DS game. If you find it for a reasonable price that is…

Tomorrow I take to the seas in The Adventures of TinTin.

Final Rating: 6.5/10

CBR Break Down:
Console Played On
: 3DS
Time to completion: ~ 3 hours
Gamer Score Earned: N/A
Price Bought at: $14.99
Current Price: $10.70 (Amazon)
Recommend Purchase Price: $10 is probably where this belongs.
Why you should buy it: Different way to use your 3DS that is at least interesting.
Why you shouldn’t buy it: Novelty wears off very quickly.

Check out all the Backlog Quest II journal entries!

Check out all the Backlog Quest II journal entries!

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About Tristan Rendo

I've made movies, written and performed music, and in January of 2011 got bored and started the awesome gaming site you see before you. My gaming roots began with the original NES, and endless hours spent spilling quarters into machines at the local arcade. I have a personal collection of over 200 Nintendo 64 games, and for many years it was the only system I owned. I re-entered the modern generation of gaming consoles when I decided to purchase a 360. I typically prefer the single player experience of games, so I’m usually playing through some single-player campaign, but can occasionally be found doing some damage in Halo Reach.