Halloween may be over, but the Ghostly Groove lasts forever... in 3D.
Gabrielle's Ghostly Groove 3D was a retail title that reached North America at the end of 2011. A European version was hard to spot, but thanks to the magic of the Nintendo 3DS eShop, we finally got our hands on the title.
The story is all about a girl named Gabrielle who becomes a ghost and escapes her body after sneezing too hard. If you feel that this makes absolutely no sense, well, be ready for it to become even weirder. To get back to her body, she has to dance and collect screams from humans. Collecting enough screams could be what she needs to bring her soul back to her body and let her enjoy her regular, normal life. It is insanely silly, but at the same time, it is charming for all those same reasons. The banter between Gabrielle and the inhabitants of Monster Town is entertaining and certainly tries to bring a smile to your face.
The game features straight up rhythmical gameplay and, simply put, parts of it aren't that innovative. You perform basic actions on the touchscreen, as you slide buttons and tap at the correct moments. There are also some segments thrown in where you collect screams which definitely bring some variety to the gameplay. Despite the simple maneuvers, the game becomes slowly and steadily quite a challenging experience and that makes for an enjoyable ride through and through. The game does start out a little too slow, which makes it all drag somewhat in the beginning. The music in the challenges are nice, head bopping tunes, but frankly, nothing truly greater than that. It is not like you will be singing those or putting it on your MP3 player of choice, but they fit the style of the game quite well.
The world and its characters bring a lot of charm to the table, but the game is not trying to be anything spectacular. Characters will bring facial expressions with a lot of emotion and their overall designs are cute, but they are mostly performing the same actions. It does help that the visuals shine in 2D and 3D on the screens and make it all worth traversing the game for. The game has a cel-shaded look and that really comes together well here. As far as replayablity goes, you will be mostly going for high scores and collecting outfits that can change how Gabrielle looks. While this won't be for everyone, you will end up with a nice length and it makes the digital release route a better choice for this game.
Gabrielle's Ghostly Groove 3D is not a well rounded rhythm game, but it has plenty going for it. The lovely, charming style and story are quite crazy but are what makes it stand out of the pack for certain. While the gameplay is fun, it is not exactly what you call new or innovative. Besides that, it does start out a little on the slower side and this makes the first few moments of the game a little rough. If you sit through that, there is nothing wrong with a late trip to Monster Town.