Midnight Ghost Hunt review

by on March 27, 2024
Reviewed On
Release Date

March 22, 2024


A couple of years ago I was introduced to the unique multiplayer creation that is Midnight Ghost Hunt, and I was blown away by this totally unique asymmetric ghost busting game. Even in early access it was incredibly polished and felt feature complete, but apparently two more years of development was still to come from Vaulted Sky Games. Well now the game has finally hit that coveted 1.0 launch, and I was beyond happy to jump back in, shoot some ghosts and spook some humans.

The concept of Midnight Ghost Hunt is fairly easy to wrap your head around. A team of fours ghost hunters have five minutes to find a team of four ghosts, who can possess various items around the map in a Prop Hunt style to avoid getting found. Once the five minutes is up and midnight comes, the ghosts become hugely powerful and have five minutes to kill the humans who came to vacuum them up. It’s a fantastic gameplay loop that ensures consistently quick matches, and varies what you’re doing enough that you’ll never get bored.

Playing as a Hunter is probably the simpler half of the game, where you play in a first person perspective and have a loadout of guns and gadgets to locate and destroy all the ghosties. With the help of an EMF reader you’ll be able to detect any nearby hidden ghosts who haven’t moved around for a while, and once you do you’ll need to blast them with your chosen weapon as they attempt to flee using one of their clever spooky tricks. Nothing feels better than finding a particularly well hidden ghost and taking it down for the team, but it’s easier said than done.

The EMF reader is only one of many gadgets you can use to locate ghosts. There’s also a microphone that will point you in the right direction, but is harder to use once you get closer to the ghost. There’s also a scanner that helps you see ghost trails from any spirits who are moving about the map. On their own these gadgets aren’t always that helpful, but by working together with your squad and combining their effects you’ll be a powerful ghost hunting unit.

A screenshot of Midnight Ghost Hunt

To overcome this selection of fancy gizmos as a ghost you’ll have to use all your cunning. It takes a lot of practice to find an object that hunters will likely ignore, and if you don’t either move around frequently or let out a taunt noise that can be heard by anyone nearby your ectoplasm meter will fill up and make you much easier to locate. Some matches I found a smaller object and tried to move around when nobody was nearby to constantly keep the hunters guessing. Other matches I’d find a way to blend in perfectly (like by possessing a school locker in a hallway of dozens of them) and would just sit ringing out my bell taunt while my enemies walked around confused. Being the perfect sneaky ghost is just so much fun, but the tension of being found is always present.

If the enemy team does finally find you, then using your special ability to escape is the only option. There are loads of these to choose from, from the simple but effective cloak to the ability to create a clone as a distraction while you sneak away. With the right strategy and a little bit of luck you’ll be back to another hiding spot in no time, but if not you’ll still be able to help the team with the haunt ability.

To ensure you aren’t bored while watching the rest of your team hide, you are given a “haunt” ability to use after you’ve left the spiritual realm. There are plenty of these haunts to choose from, and you can change yours (like all your abilities) at your spooky base. Perhaps there’s an ally hiding at the top of a treacherous climb and you want to lightly shove the hunters down when they try to reach them, or you’d like to slow down any hunters who are chasing an escaping ally with the Freeze ability. Well however you want to disrupt and annoy the enemies there’s probably a haunt for you to use while waiting for midnight.

A screenshot of Midnight Ghost Hunt

Once midnight comes all those departed ghosts will return from the vacuums they’re stuck in (albeit with limited health) and it’s time to beat up some humans. With extra power you can now run up to the hunters and punch them, possess an object and throw it at them, or even find a specific item to possess with a powerful ability (like a cannon full of big metal death balls) to truly ruin their day. Although your ghost army is beefed up at this stage you still have to be careful, a well prepared team might have the traps and tricks to deal with you and if they survive for five minutes or kill you all they still win. I could never quite tell if the balance felt right in these situations (because when you die as a powered up ghost it always feels a bit disappointing) but if enough ghosts survive to midnight and work together it’s often just a bloodbath.

Midnight Ghost Hunt wouldn’t hang as a competitive multiplayer game if there weren’t loads of viable strategies for Ghosts and Hunters alike, but thankfully there really are tons of them. Hunters have loads of different gear that can be used effectively if you’re clever, like ghost traps, cameras, or even just a good old fashioned sledgehammer you can use to break objects as fast as possible. Ghosts, if anything, have even more options to play around with, like the ability to make objects float and launch at people who come looking for you, potentially killing and eliminating them even before midnight. Playing around with different options with your teammates is a whole lot of fun, and might just lead to victory.

One of the things that impressed me most about Midnight Ghost Hunt in early access was the sublime map design, with some incredible themed environments that were thoughtfully designed for the best battles between the living and the dead. Since I last played, loads of fantastic new maps have been added, like the spooky theme park complete with creepy clown statues you can possess. Even older maps like the pirate ship, and the school on prom night have been improved with gorgeous updated lighting effects and some subtle rearranging, and the game is all the more enjoyable because of it.

A screenshot of Midnight Ghost Hunt

Perhaps the most noticeable changes from the early access version of Midnight Ghost Hunt I played though are the little touches that make it great. The fact you can unlock all sorts of weapon skins, character skins, and emotes with the currency you earn, or the cassettes you can find lying around and play in boomboxes featuring music from other Coffee Stain games. Best of all though is the ghost busting minigame you can play while in the van on your way to a hunt as a human, which takes place on a little knock off Game Boy you can whip out your pocket (and can customise to your liking, transparent purple anyone?). It’s just such a polished and lovingly created game, and the little things make the overall package all the more impressive.

The only real issue I had during my time with Midnight Ghost Hunt was getting back into the swing of things against some seriously talented players. Skill based matchmaking seems lacking in this game, and with a steep learning curve and a fairly basic tutorial it will take at least a couple of hours for you to manage the bare minimum in matches. It’s hard to say what could really improve the experience for new or returning players, but I imagine some will bounce off the game pretty hard if they don’t have the friends to help them through those early sessions.

Midnight Ghost Hunt is one of the most exciting and creative multiplayer games in years, and in version 1.0 the game has only gotten better. With loads of gorgeous maps, clever loadout options, and amazing little touches, Midnight Ghost Hunt is a truly special multiplayer game, and I hope it finds enough of an audience to keep it active for years to come.


A truly unique multiplayer game
Loads of strategies to play with as human or ghost
Incredible map design
Loads of little touches that make the game special


Tricky to get into for newcomers
Matchmaking is a little lacking
Post midnight sometimes feels a bit unfair

Editor Rating
Our Score


In Short

Midnight Ghost Hunt is a wonderful and unique multiplayer experience with loads of loadout options and so much polish in 1.0.