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Video Game / Laser Ghost

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Largely forgotten arcade game by Sega, Laser Ghost is a shooter that tells the story of Ghost City, a ghost town that appears every 13 years and demands sacrifices of young virgins. This time poor little Katherine is kidnapped by a demon, but luckily three young guys (Bill, Max and Carol) are there to save the day and rescue Katherine before she is sacrificed.

The game appeared in the arcades in 1989, it was a first person shooter with an horror theme which could be played by up to three people, well before House of the Dead. In 1991 SEGA ported the game to Sega Master System, but it was largely changed: gone were the three heroes, instead the player got to protect young Katherine, which was onscreen at all times, from various possessed stuff that appeared from nowhere and tried to kill her, by shooting them with the light gun of course.

Here a video of the gameplay.

This game provides examples of:

  • Absurdly-Spacious Sewer: Level three of the arcade.
  • Body Horror: When you rescue Katherine at the end of the arcade game, she turns out to be a fake and the Final Boss of the game. She turns into a bloated, ugly version of herself that fights with a Sinister Scythe, then becomes a multi-faced, multi-legged lump of flesh that attacks, among other things, by shooting eyeballs at you.
  • Dem Bones: Some enemies.
  • Dueling Games: The arcade was released the same year as SNK's Beast Busters, a slightly more serious (but still quite weird) shooter where up to three players wander in a town full of bizarre monsters and creatures.
  • Everything Trying to Kill You: Let's see... among others, possessed trashcans, cars, bricks, ropes, tombstones, shirts, pineapples, and an evil cuckoo clock. The first boss of the arcade version is a possessed cinema marquee. Possessed apples, furniture, suits of armor and portraits in the Master System version.
    • And a single teddy bear. In the sewers.
  • Excuse Plot
  • Gangplank Galleon: Level four of the arcade.
  • Hell Hotel: Level 2 in the arcade game, last level in the SMS version.
  • Raising the Steaks: Possessed roast chickens, lobsters and piglets hurl themselves at you in the "haunted hotel" level.
  • Shout-Out: The heroes of the game are very reminiscent of the Ghostbusters, and Katharine looks a bit like Carol Anne from Poltergeist.
    • The three floating heads that appear at the end of level 5 in the arcade are similar to Eddie The Head, Iron Maiden's mascot.
    • In the intro screen of the arcade game there is a tombstone with "Line Of Fire" carved on it. Line Of Fire was a previous arcade shooter by SEGA.