Team GrisGris and XSEED Games were recently excited to bring Corpse Party to Steam once again. This version is a translated port of Corpse Party: Bloodcovered, which was released in Japan in 2008. How well does the game hold up after so many years?
One night, a group of Japanese high school students are hanging out in their school after hours, telling ghost stories. As they top off the last story, they perform a ritual known as Sachiko Ever After, which is said to forever bond people together.
Unfortunately, things don’t work out very well, and the group somehow winds up trapped in an echo of a long-since demolished school building in which a series of gruesome murders took place. To top things off, the students aren’t even in the same building, as there are various “Spaces”, or versions of the building, and they have been separated into these “Spaces”.
Many have died in rather painful ways as well, and, to make things even worse, those who die or have died in Heavenly Host will suffer the pain they experienced at the time of their death for all eternity. It is rather disturbing, especially when you consider how grotesque some of the deaths truly were.
The overall story was interesting, and I was constantly looking forward to seeing what would happen next. There were a few twists that were surprising and, without giving too much away, some of the bad endings you can get were shocking and unexpected. i honestly didn’t expect to end up eating a friend after reading a cursed note, for one.
The wrong ends are all quite gruesomely detailed, and can disturb players with how much detail they provide. There are over 20 different Wrong Ends for the player to discover, as well as the True End.
In terms of gameplay, Corpse Party feels like a mix of visual novel and puzzle game. You explore the abandoned Heavenly Host, examining everything that you can as you attempt to figure out a way to reunite with your friends and escape the creepy building. There is no combat in this Survival Horror title, and, if you’re not careful, you may do something incorrectly and not even realize until quite a bit later when you get one of the many wrong ends.
The game does give you three save points per chapter, however, so, if you utilize the candles that act as the game’s save points wisely, you shouldn’t have to backtrack too far. If you don’t use them wisely, you may save yourself into a corner and have to start the chapter over. Personally, I fell victim to this twice; Once in Chapter 1 and once in Chapter 5.
Those who want to see every one of the endings (or who just died and want to get through text quickly) can utilize the handy skip button to fast forward past some text.
As you navigate the crumbling school, you need to watch out for ghosts and other obstacles that can damage and kill your characters (you can always check your current HP by hitting the Escape button).
Overall, Corpse Party is a title that feels like it will be hit or miss for gamers. Those who can may prefer to pick up the PlayStation Portable version, as it is honestly a bit creepier overall than this PC port, but those who can’t, or those who want some of the extras, including the extra chapters present in this version, should still find a solid title with an intriguing story in Corpse Party for PC.
Final Score: 4/5