Hauntii Review

Hauntii Review

The OMG Review
Our review format is not your usual fare and we’ve broken it down into 3 very simple ratings!

“Buy it!” means that the game deserves a place in your collection. Be it day 1 or a slightly delayed purchase, it’s hard to go wrong with this title. In numbers, this is around an 8/10 and above.

“Wait for it…” means that while the game is good, it probably isn’t worth it at its day 1 price point. We suggest you wait for a sale before jumping in. In numbers, this is around a 5 – 7/10.

“Ignore it!” means that the game is not something we’d recommend playing, whether it be now or in the near future. Maybe ever. Let’s not even go to the numbers for this one.

Sneak Peek
  • Release Date: May 23, 2024
  • Platforms: PS5, PC, Switch, Xbox Series X|S
  • Genre: Narrative Twin-stick Shooter
  • Similar Games: Genesis Noir, The Binding of Isaac
  • Price: starts at $19.99

Hauntii is an indie narrative twin-stick shooter from Moonloop Games and Firestoke. It tells a tale of a newly arrived spirit. Confused, it wanders aimlessly across the afterlife until it encounters an Eternian who invites it to ascend into the heavens. Chained by its damned coils, it falls back into the afterlife, cursed to wander the darkness forever.

Or is it? After learning that it can get stronger through finding the stars of its former self, the spirit strives to find these fragments, get stronger and one day be reunited with its heavenly acquaintance in paradise.

Will it achieve its goal or wander aimlessly for the rest of eternity? Stare into the abyss and hopefully come back stronger! Let’s dive into the ethereal world of Hauntii!

Eternal Puzzlement

Ever since we encountered Hauntii during the Day of the Devs last year, we’ve been intrigued by the title because of its creepy cute visuals and unique game design. Back then, we didn’t play the game enough to form a substantial opinion, but having delved deeper into its world and its straightforward story, Hauntii haunted us with its original premise.

Hauntii conspires with its audio-visual presentation to quickly onboard you into its creepy cute world filled with awe and mystery. Just like the newborn shade, you’re thrown into the world confused. Its quick tutorial gives you some quick ways to learn the basic moves: movement, dash with the A button, aiming and shooting with the right trigger stick, and interacting with objects with the X button.

You’ll encounter corrupted shades who will mindlessly attack you. Aiming and shooting will take a bit to learn if you’re not used to the twin-stick shooter interface, but you’ll get the hang of it pretty quickly. After a while, a curious mechanic you’ll learn will be how to haunt objects and other entities by shooting them. At first, you’ll haunt shrubs and structures that will grant you triangles; the game’s currency.

Eventually, as you complete the tutorial, you’ll notice that if you step out of the beaten path, you will be attacked by unseen entities in the dark, punctuating the creepy aspect of the creepy cute. Thinking that you’ve hit the game over screen, you will encounter the Eternian who then kickstarts the plot. Hauntii can now finally begin!

Hauntii Map

For the most part, Hauntii is a unique experience. It moves like a twin shooter game but behaves like a well-crafted platformer. You progress through the title by collecting stars through puzzles and quests. If you collect enough stars to form a constellation, you will be able to unlock moments in the young shade’s past life depicted in snippets. You can also power up your health, shot, and dash as an in-game reward.

You can interact with other shades in town or on your travels, who will either provide you with some cryptic clues or add to the ongoing lore that you collect by exploring the afterlife. Such clues can lead to collecting more stars or allow you to solve certain puzzles in your travels.

Your mini-map is your main guide through the entire journey with the white flag pinpointing your next task or goal. Sadly, there is no fast travel to cut the backtracking between areas, though you can unlock shortcuts after unlocking enough constellations or progressing through the story, making traversal less arduous.

The simplistic nature of traversal really allows you to easily get into the action and exploration of Hauntii. Combined with its charming visuals, you can easily get into the world and get enthralled by its rich charms.

Hauntii Gameplay

The bulk of the gameplay in Hauntii requires you to explore new areas and collect stars. Getting in your way are the hostile spirits and environmental hazards that can reduce your health represented in hearts. Once all your hearts are depleted, you then lose some of your hard-earned triangles and respawn in the closest checkpoint, which autosaves your progress.

Haunting your environment is a key mechanic that allows you to make the most of your exploration and combat. Certain obstacles may prove too powerful and overwhelming with your base load out. By haunting creatures that launch larger projectiles, you can overcome many of these powerful shades. Haunting bugs, trees, and wandering shades can speed up your traversal or launch you to previously unreachable areas. You do need to collect spirit energy to power these haunts, which are plentiful in your exploration.

Finally, certain areas are guarded by an area boss that is more a puzzle-oriented combat than a straightforward beatdown. It may involve a combination of your skills and haunting environment entities to defeat. Defeating these bosses will net you a larger amount of resources you can stock for later use.

A Hard Knock Afterlife

While it is easy to get into Hauntii, it can be a little bit overwhelming at the midpoint of the game when newer, more hostile spirits and environmental hazards are added. You will need to improve with the difficulty spike and keep up with the ongoing challenges that are presented.

However, after a certain point, the story progress gates you significantly and you will need to forcibly collect stars and complete constellations to continue your game progress. For a while, I’ve thought that the constellation collection felt like an organic process of the game, but this speed bump feels like a huge momentum suck.

Hauntii Boss Fight

While the collection of the constellations was fun at the start, being forced to complete them to progress the story becomes quite tedious. This gameplay loop continues until you complete the game. The good news is that the story continues to be engaging and heartfelt, so much so that it doesn’t outstay its welcome.

The controls and movement speeds of Hauntii are actually quite polished. It’s easy to pick up and go and while you do need to keep up with the game speed, whose difficulty spikes gradually increase, it’s a decent process and doesn’t overwhelm too much besides the first difficulty spike jump.

It is worth noting that the soundtrack for Hauntii is definitely something that stands out. It ranges from soothing to ethereal, heartrending to elating, and it carries the player throughout its many set pieces and story beats. It’s worth a listen.

Hauntii Story

We played an early build of the game, so we’ve experienced a few hiccups that are both immersion-breaking and sometimes progression-breaking as certain areas of the game sometimes loop or certain stars become either out of reach or inaccessible. We have had to reload the game to repeat certain areas that glitch out due to these hiccups.

As you complete Hauntii, there are still quite a lot of extras to collect including the blue leaves that allow you to purchase hats. These hats are mostly cosmetic and do not affect Hauntii in any significant way. While it doesn’t exactly add in terms of replay value, Hauntii is quite brief and you can find many of its secrets on your first playthrough.

Verdict: Buy It!


Hauntii is a short and sweet unique indie experience that provides a decent outing with its presentation, creepy cute visual style, and heartfelt story. It provides a decent enough challenge to explore and traverse its ethereal world. While collecting its stars to form constellations to tell the protagonist’s visual tale is enticing, I wished it was done a little bit more organically.

Overall, its brief original experience really is something to be experienced to be believed. I enjoyed solving puzzles and interacting with the creepy cute world, and it’s a decent indie to pick up in between the larger titles this year to spend the time. I can’t wait for Moonloop Games’ next title.

*Hauntii was reviewed on an Xbox Series X with a review code provided by the publisher.


8 Score

Hauntii is a short and sweet unique indie experience that provides a decent outing with its presentation, creepy cute visual style, and its heartfelt story. It provides a decent enough challenge to explore and traverse its ethereal world.


  • Excellent, heartfelt story told in tandem with its unique creepy cute world.
  • Easy to pick-up controls and interface making the game accessible for everybody.
  • The haunting mechanic is a nifty way to interact with the world and solve its many puzzles.
  • Fantastic soundtrack that carries the player through its many story beats.


  • Gameplay loop grinds to a halt with its forced star collection mechanic.
  • Difficulty spikes that can slow down story momentum.

Review Breakdown

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