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Ghostwire: Tokyo (ゴーストワイヤー:東京) is a 2022 action-adventure video game developed by Tango Gameworks (the studio behind The Evil Within) and published by Bethesda.

Shibuya, Tokyo has been struck by a mysterious fog that spirits away anybody and everybody caught in it, and allows spirits known as "Visitors" to roam the streets. As a result, Shibuya has become a ghost town. The player controls Akito, a recently-deceased man who is brought back to life by the spirit "KK", who deems him able to solve this crisis...

The game was released as a timed exclusive for PlayStation 5 on March 25th, 2022. A prequel Visual Novel, Ghostwire: Tokyo - Prelude, was released on March 8th.

Tropes that apply to this work

  • Action Survivor: Akito is just a normal human without being attached to KK and the few times they're separated he's unable to use Elemental Weaving and other skills. However, he's relatively athletic, can still use the bow and talismans, and can even do quick purges when sneaking up on enemies. He even manages to fight and defeat Ko Omote after being separated from KK.
  • Always Chaotic Evil: The Visitors are all hostile and attack Akito on sight. Ultimately they could hardly be otherwise, given that they are entirely formed from negative feelings.
  • Anyone Can Die: Everybody you meet, be it a main character, side character or villain, dies or is dead already. The only plot-related survivors are Akito and some folks from outside the barrier he only heard of. Oh, and animals are okay too.
  • Apocalypse How: Class 0. The Fog that consumes Shibuya turns (almost) all of the humans there into disembodied souls, with Youkai and Visitors wandering about in their place. If the Big Bad's plan to use the collective souls of Shibuya to permanently open the barrier between the Living world and the Underworld succeeds, it may well upgrade to a Class 4 or 5.
  • Big Brother Instinct: Akito's main goal throughout the game is to rescue his sister Mari. Even after barely surviving a car crash, being forcibly possessed by KK, and seeing the localized apocalypse, his first thought is to fight his way to Mari's hospital room.
  • Big Brother Mentor: KK shows shades of this the longer the story goes. Many scenes have him tell Akito he's proud of him, how he's getting better at controlling their powers, and that he's doing really good despite everything.
  • Bittersweet Ending: Hannya is stopped and all the souls he trapped are free to return to life. However, Rinko and KK pass on and Mari dies in Akito's arms despite his best efforts. Still, Akito manages to make peace with her before she passes and resolves to live his life to the fullest despite the tragedies he's faced. He also promises KK to tell his wife and son that he never stopped fighting till the end and leaves the underworld to do just that.
  • The Blank: A lack of facial features is a running theme with the Visitors, either lacking them, being always concealed behind masks or hoods or being straight up headless. This likely reflects that they are not really people so much as Anthropomorphic Personifications of misery.
  • Bloodless Carnage: Given that most of the enemies are spiritual entities this is generally the rule. The Visitors just disintergrate with little fuss when destroyed.
  • Blow You Away: The Air element features weak, but rapid-fire and fast attacks, useful for hitting weak, unarmored enemies and as a general-purpose damage dealer thanks to its high ammo count.
  • Brought Down to Normal: Whenever KK is separated from Akito he returns to being a normal human with none of his Elemental Weaving abilities. This happens again in the ending when KK passes on and we see that Akito's Mark of the Supernatural has disappeared.
  • Cats Are Magic: The Nekomata who act as the game's shopkeepers and are portrayed as two-tailed, floating cats. Also the more normal cats wandering Shibuya can be conversed with using KK's power and several of them have useful insight into the supernatural goings on around them.
  • Contrived Coincidence: Akito just happened to get into an accident in the intro, thus allowing KK to possess him, and he also happens to be the older brother of the girl Hannya wants to use as his Living Macguffin. KK states that Akito has the 'affinity' and that Hannya might be connected to the accident but it's never really brought up again.
  • Colour-Coded for Your Convenience: Most ghosts are a gentle blue but the corrupted and hostile specters are Red and Black and Evil All Over.
  • Cursed with Awesome: Hannya's experiments are the reason KK, and by extension Akito, have Elemental Powers among other things. KK sounds infuriated when he brings it up and Akito would really rather not have to fight spirits and just have his sister back.
  • Damsel in Distress: Akito's sister Mari is kidnapped by Hannya shortly after Akito's possession and his main goal throughout the story is to rescue her.
  • Elemental Powers: Akito, and by extension KK, mostly fight the Visitors using elementally-themed powers.
  • Finishing Move: When an enemy is stunned after taking enough damage, their core is exposed, allowing Akito to rip it out and instantly kill it, at range or up close. The former leaves him stationary for a few moments, potentially leaving him open to attacks, while the latter is faster but getting up close to the enemy can be risky in the first place.
  • Fire-Forged Friends: Akito and KK start off barely tolerating each other and only work together due to mutual goals. As the game goes on the two form more of a bond and their banter changes with KK being proud and supportive while Akito tries to understand KK's history and circumstances.
  • First-Episode Resurrection: Akito dies in a vehicular accident, but is brought back to like thanks to KK deeming him available and useful.
  • Four Is Death: Once inside the hospital, Akito tells KK that the former's sister is currently on the fourth floor. Of course, the Visitors prowling the vacant hospital stand in their way.
    • Most side missions inside buildings take place on the fourth floor as well, nothing good ever lingers there.
  • The Ghost: Of KK's friends/team members from Prelude, only Rinko is met in person and Erika appears as a vision during her boss fight. The other two members are never met (although Akito does find a picture of them and Ed's voice is heard in prerecorded messages a few times). Justified since the still-alive members left Shibuya prior to the dome being erected and they can't get in till it's gone.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Contrasting Akito's Nice Guy, KK tends to be blunt, rude and cynical and introduces himself by trying to forcibly take over Akito's body. Once they start getting along better, however, he shows a much more kind and supportive side and he's quick to offer help to many of the wandering spirits, which Akito points out.
  • Legacy Character: At a few points KK references another member of his supernatural-hunting group who passed on his powers to KK in a not-dissimilar situation from what happened with him and Akito. It's implied that Akito will be the third link in this chain.
  • Making a Splash: The Water element shoots out slow-moving horizontal blades, useful for dealing with tightly packed crowds of enemies, but the limited range makes it risky to use on faster or ranged enemies.
  • Malevolent Masked Man: The Big Bad is a nameless individual that KK has a grudge against, identified only by the Hannya mask he wears and giving no personal moniker himself. He's accompanied by 3 similarly masked and suited individuals that serve as his Co-Dragons. These are eventually unmasked throughout the story to reveal they are the possessed bodies of Hannya's wife and daughter, which he is fine putting in mortal peril because he only puts value in the human soul, and seeks to liberate humanity from their 'earthly prisons'. The final one, which is fought several times and serves as more of a direct Dragon for Hannya, is revealed to be KK's original body, apparently Reforged into a Minion to mock him.
  • Nice Guy: Akito starts off noticeably panicked at first, which is understandable given his circumstances, but once he adjusts to the situation he's happy to help KK rescue spirits and Yokai in distress.
  • Night Parade of One Hundred Demons: A variation - as the map opens up more, a parade of youkai will be wandering around. If the player isn't careful, Akito can wind up caught in one and will have to fight off several waves, so it's best recommended to either run away or go very high up if you're not feeling confident.
  • No Body Left Behind: This happens to those caught in the fog and reduced to spiritual bodies by the Hannya-masked Man, leaving only their piles of discarded clothing littering the streets. This actually proves crucially important to Akito and KK's uneasy partnership in the beginning. When he threatens to abandon his possession of Akito's body, which would kill him for good, in favour of another, less resistant vessel, Akito points out that there aren't any other bodies around for him to use, thus both of them equally need the other to achieve their goals.
    • Whenever Akito dies we're shown his body fading from existence before the game restarts.
    • This is also how the Visitors and hostile Yokai go out, just fading out of existence.
  • No Name Given: The man in the Hannya mask is referred to as such for the entire game, and his real name is never given.
  • Not Quite Dead: In the beginning, KK's attempts to possess any of the living humans in the area fail, forcing him to apparently use Akito's deceased corpse nearby instead. However, Akito still retains his consciousness despite his possession, something KK wasn't expecting, noting that the young man was Only Mostly Dead, which is why he can fight KK for control over his physical body.
  • Paper Talisman: There's consumable ofuda that Akito can buy from the various nekomata shopkeepers and later use them during combat, like a Stun Talisman that can create a small dome of electricity to stun the Visitors and kuchisake-onna. There's also ofuda seen stuck on doors that Akito has to unseal, and then there's also ofuda seen in his hand when he either performs an up-close finishing move of grabbing the core or is doing a back-attack on stronger enemies.
  • Playing with Fire: The Fire element features incredible burst damage in an area, capable of wrecking armored or shielded enemies, at the cost of needing to be charged up and having limited ammo. It only takes one shot for most enemies or groups of them, but you had better make sure that shot doesn't miss.
  • Pretty Boy: Akito is slender and has far softer features than the rougher KK.
  • Post-Modern Magik: Payphones are used to store freed spirits safely until they're restored later on, Rinko also uses a payphone to transfer all she knows — as a ghost — to Akito, and a motorcycle enhanced with anti-Otherworld modifications is used to enter the Very Definitely Final Dungeon.
  • Shout-Out:
  • Speaks Fluent Animal: KK and by extension Akito can use his powers to communicate with animals, both the supernatural and the regular kind.
  • The Straight and Arrow Path: Akito has access to a bow which can fire special arrows that can deal tremendous damage to targets. If you happen to be out of Ether for your normal abilities, it can also act as an emergency weapon though it's far from ideal, thanks to the limited ammo and the cost of replacing them. Whenever Akito is separated from KK it's also his main means of attack.
  • Symbiotic Possession: Akito and KK establish this despite their rough start. The few times they're separated, such as in specific story events or by certain enemy attacks, they're quick to try and reunite and are much weaker separated than when they're together.
  • Teeth-Clenched Teamwork: At the beginning after KK possess Akito, for obvious reasons where Akito isn't happy of being possessed by KK and KK not being able to be in physically control most of the time. The two later get over the "Teeth Clenched" part, evolving into a genuine partnership.
  • Tokyo Is the Center of the Universe: The game is set in Tokyo's Shibuya ward, where the fog has turned this part of the city into a ghost town.
  • Training the Gift of Magic: Akito has a naturally high etheric affinity, and while he can't use Etheric Weaving, he apparently learns how to use ether to charge his arrows, perform sneak exorcisms, absorb spirits into katashiro, and sense whether or not an enemy is aware of his presence, judging by the things he can do without KK in his body.
  • Trash of the Titans: The "The Hoarder's House" quest involves Akito and KK going into a house that's filled wall to wall with trash and has flies buzzing inside. The house is possessed by the specter of a greedy hoarder who wants everything, including the protagonists, to the point it attracts Visitors. After dealing with them, Akito and KK banish the hoarder's ghost.
  • Videogame Caring Potential:
    • You have the ability to feed stray dogs on the streets, earning you their gratitude and a thank you gift in the form of hidden treasure.
    • Some of the sidequests involve helping trapped spirits move on by fulfilling their dying wishes or helping give them some closure for the problems that plagued them in life. For example, you can help an elderly man's soul pass by giving him one last chance to see the cherry blossom trees bloom.
  • Youkai: Both harmful and not-as-harmful types show up, some carrying magatama that Akito needs to unlock more skills.
    • Ittan-momen: Floating long strips of cloth that can be found above rooftops. However, they don't wrap themselves around Akito's neck — Akito just chases them down for their magatama.
    • Jizō (jizo): Jizo statues with their iconic bibs (although not always in red) can be found throughout Shibuya to increase Akito's ether capacity.
    • Kamaitachi: While they still keep their speedy reputation because you have to chase them down, they don't actually hurt Akito with their scythes, although apparently they were doing so to other, less magical citizens prior to everyone vanishing.
    • Kappa: Like their real world mythical counterparts, they steal a human's shirikodama. Akito can catch one by luring it in with cucumbers that can be bought from the nekomata.
    • Karakasa: Karakasa-kozo, where Akito has to sneak up behind them or they'll run away if they spot him.
    • Kodama: Little seed-like beings that nurture trees, they are defenceless against Visitors looking to take their power and need Akito's help to protect them.
    • Kuchisake-onna: In this game they're Visitors rather than youkai or ghosts. Wearing a surgical mask and carrying a large pair of shears, they're one of the more dangerous Visitors to fight while running about, especially on Tatari Mode (a mode where you don't gain experience points), since they run rather fast and hit hard.
    • Nekomata: Nekomata are the shopkeepers, where Akito can buy various supplies from them. Some have optional item requests that'll earn a good amount of money if Akito goes through the extra trouble of picking up the items.
    • Nurikabe: These living walls are naturally hiding inside apartments and homes, blocking rooms or passages that can lead to extra collectibles.
    • Oni: In a portrayal surprisingly lacking in aggression the Oni seem mostly concerned with making friends among the city's dogs and are being hunted for their power by the Visitors. If Akito defends their dog buddies they'll grant that power to him willingly.
    • Rokurokubi: Other than the traditional long neck, these harmless rokurokubi also are carrying a lantern in their mouths. They're found throughout Shibuya where Akito basically follows them to an endpoint. They can lead him into ambushes by Visitors but this is probably by accident.
    • Tanuki: In full shape-shifting glory, where it's part of a sidequest to find them at the request of a tanuki boss. They're easily identifiable by their tails when disguised.
    • Tengu: They basically act as grappling points to get up to the many skyscraper rooftops of Shibuya (and that unwillingly, although they don't seem to mind much either), but that's it for their presence.
    • Zashiki-warashi: They're found inside apartments and homes, and will happily grant a magatama after an offering of shio senbei (fried rice crackers) is made at their altars.