Banishers: Ghosts of New Eden on PC / Steam – The DVDfever Review

Banishers: Ghosts of New EdenBanishers: Ghosts of New Eden Banishers: Ghosts of New Eden

Banishers: Ghosts of New Eden is a brand new I.P. from French developer DON’T NOD, who have also had success with Life is Strange and Vampyr, amongst others previously.

This is an action/adventure/detective hybrid that sees the main characters, Red and Antea, being called in to help a Chaplin friend with a ghost problem over in America circa 1695. Upon arriving, something is definitely not right, with the heavy mist and darkness during the day. Heading to town, you discover said friend has died, and most of the townsfolk have left because of a curse to other local towns, or out in the forest for their safety.

With being a Banisher, you’ll discover folk are having similar vivid nightmares, and there are spectres everywhere that need to be sent packing to the afterlife or banished if you will.

From here you head out to investigate the death of your friend and find the entity that is behind the towns curse. For the first 90 mins or so, you’ll work through the investigation, and Antea is killed by the Nightmare (not a spoiler as it is in the trailers!) So now, you have the one thing at your side that you banish for a living. This puts you in a moral dilemma of what to do…

The investigations, themselves, involve the living and the dead, usually in a case of the living being haunted for whatever reason. Your task is to talk to the people involved, asking key questions, which in turn adds the info to the investigation screen. Alongside this, you will look around specific areas, finding the clues as well as doing a Harkening, where you will get the echoes of what happened there. This will usually bring forward the ghost which is doing the haunting, allowing you to speak to them to find out their side of things. However, it is not always cut and dry though with the outcomes.

BANISHERS: GHOSTS OF NEW EDEN – Gameplay Walkthrough – FULL GAME (4K 60FPS) No Commentary- Shirrako

In the first case outside of the main story, you have two woodsmen. One is left in the hut, and after questioning, you have to go and find the other. It turns out that he had murdered his companion, but couldn’t face the truth and horror of what he has done. Once confronted, however, and when the spirit turns up and you have him finally admit what he did, you then have to decide whether to Banish or Ascend the spirit – essentially the same thing – or kill the living as punishment for what they have done which is essentially out-and-out murder.

The kicker here, though, is that with these investigations choosing banish or ascend will give you an ending ascending Antea. However, if you want to bring her back to life, then you have to kill every single person, regardless of whether they are right or wrong. Additionally, you HAVE to find and solve every investigation to bring Antea back to life, and some of the investigations really don’t warrant killing the living, even though the lines can be very blurred on the circumstances of the haunting.

The combat flows like many 3rd-person action games. You have standard, heavy and charged attacks, blocking & parrying, and a dodge. Once you have Antea’s spirit at your side, you can mix up the combat by switching to her for a period of time, which in turn then flicks back to red, as his attacks charge Antea’s power bar, which drops with every attack she makes. Enemies are very similar, and for the first half of the game, you’ll be fighting spirits and wolves, mainly. Sometimes, spirits will occupy a corpse which can be stopped if you get there in time. If not, switching to Antea does more damage to these type or possessed enemies.

Occasionally, you may get a stronger enemy that will keep summoning the standard spirits, so it can become a bit of a juggling act refilling Antea’s power bar, but also damaging the spirit doing the summoning, or sending the exploding green orbs. Thankfully, there is a lock-on, but it can occasionally be a bit hit-and-miss locking onto another target, once one has been removed. It isn’t overly bad at least, and moving the camera for repositioning and a fresh lock-on is as easy as the Souls-type games.

There is a skill tree where you’ll be awarded points that are either red or blue (or both), which in turn allows you to unlock both passive and active skills for both characters, making life easier when mixing things up in combat or traversal.

All 4 Endings – Banishers: Ghosts of New Eden (Secret Ending, Good Ending, Bad Ending) – Gaming with Abyss

For a smaller developer, I have to say that the voice work is absolutely fantastic and some of the best I have heard in a long while. The different characters you meet all have their own personalities and attitudes towards you, and not forgetting the chatter between Red & Antea, which shows the affection they have for one another, and the job that still must be completed.

The game isn’t really a huge open world, it is larger areas which you can explore with a few entrances and exits, taking you elsewhere to another large searchable area. It rather reminded me of the way the areas on the Borderlands games are setup, each with their own environment type and buildings etc.

Performance is decent enough at 1440p on my PC using DLSS and frame generation. Without DLSS, I averaged around 60fps on High details. Turning on DLSS and frame gen, I get a good 150fps. Maybe a little more optimisation is needed if not using upscaling, but 60fps is still more than good enough for this type of game. Another plus is, out-the-door, there have been no glitches or errors at all for me.

I have really enjoyed my time with Banishers: Ghosts of New Eden. Every so often, a smaller developer like DON’T NOD or Spiders amongst others bring us something new and refreshing to the table instead of churning out something similar to other games. It is a space in gaming that I really like, as you get a great unique experience that should not be missed.

Banishers: Ghosts of New Eden – Accolades Trailer – Focus Entertainment

Thanks to our friends at Focus Home Interactive for the review code.

Banishers: Ghosts of New Eden is out now on Xbox Series X / Xbox One, PC / Steam and PS5.

Important info:

  • Developer: DON’T NOD
  • Publisher: Focus Home Interactive
  • Players: Single player only

    OVERALL 8.5