Ghost Harvest Review: Forget Corn Plant Graves and Harvest Souls

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Rating: ★★★★☆

Ghost Harvest (Free, App Store) is a whimsical farming-type game where your job is to manage a cemetery to save souls and protect it from ghost hunters and other invaders.

This game follows in the footsteps of other farming games such as Farmville and We Rule. It is a casual game that you won’t spend hours of intense concentration on, but it does require commitment, as you must be timely to reap your rewards. It can be linked to your Facebook account to earn additional gifts and has it’s own page to follow there.

Like many apps, Ghost Harvest is free to download, but spending money to acquire additional candy for use in the game can speed up your advancement and has its advantages. This in-app purchase strategy is becoming a common way for game developers to earn money for their efforts.

The premise is that you are the caretaker of a cemetery. “Your mission is to help the recently deceased get to a better afterlife!” You earn coins for each soul delivered to the pearly gates. Your goal is to grow your cemetery to be the biggest and most beautiful. However, the bigger you get, the more attention you draw, which interferes with your mission.

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Ghosts come in two types: souls – which earn the coins – and defenders – which don’t immediately transport to the afterlife, but stick around to help defend the cemetery. Defenders have three abilities – scariness, speed, and un-health – each of which serves a purpose for specific situations. Balancing the three abilities is part of the challenge of the game.

Like a typical farming game, you “plant” a grave and time must elapse before you “harvest” a soul. You can use various landscaping items to decorate your plot, which gets bigger as the game goes along. Some of the décor also have features that you can interact with, such as piñatas in trees, which can earn you coins.

You are given missions to complete that help you build your cemetery and help build your skills both for earning coins and for defense. They may be as simple as planting a tree or more involved with harvesting souls or defending from detractors. The missions keep the game moving forward and introduce you to new skills and strategies as you move through the levels.

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This game has delicate, detailed graphics and music that isn’t spooky. It has a light-hearted feel that is reinforced by quirks such as the ghosts appreciating candy.

I found the game a bit confusing to start. It didn’t seem intuitive as to how to place graves and what would happen once you did. But after harvesting a soul or two, it became a familiar genre.

As with all farming-type games, it takes time to move through the levels. Different ghosts take different lengths of time until they’re ready and sometimes moving through the levels seemed a bit slow. But there are shortcuts, mostly involving candy, to make things go faster.

Overall, it’s a familiar genre with a fun theme that makes for enjoyable play.

Pros

  • Enjoyable theme
  • Good help and missions for learning the game
  • Advances at an enjoyable pace

Cons

  • Confusing to start
  • Takes time to get going

Free (App Store)

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