Hidden Gems – Ghostbusters: The Video Game
When asked to name a game that has offered true, unadulterated fan service the most usual answers would be Batman Arkham City, Portal 2 or even Deus Ex: Human Revolution. However, Ghostbusters: The Video Game was one of the richest, deepest and most fun filled fan-service games of the entire generation.
Everyone loves Ghostbusters and if you don’t then chances are you have no soul. Not only did Ghostbusters: The Video Game appeal to the one time viewer with its reenactments of famous quotes and scenes such as the StayPuff Man’s failed rampage, it also pleased fans who hold a much deeper knowledge from the cartoons, comics and outer universe. Terminal Reality poured in the love to the game, yet for some reason, it has been overlooked this generation.
There is no denying that the camera is incredibly useless having weird spasms during fights, that the controls are clunky making Isaac Clarke seem like Usain Bolt and the fact that the graphics are pretty poor. But for a huge Ghostbusters fan such as myself, they were mere niggles that became negligible when considering the game as a whole.
Ghostbusters: The Video Game featured full voice over work from the original cast and a script written by the wonderful Dan Akroyd and Harold Ramis. The banter, the mythology, the weapons, everything was genuine authentic Ghostbusters and it was fantastic. With the third film in a constant yes-no limbo, Ghostbusters: The Video Game is probably the closest thing we will ever get to a fully-fledged sequel or installment for the legendary franchise; for that reason alone, it needs some loving.
Terminal Reality’s love for the series bleeds through every scene, including the gorgeous CGI cutscenes that in all honestly are some of the greatest on consoles. With the introduction of a new member to the team, fans were transported into the Ghostbusters universe and cast themselves onto the mute newbie making Bill Murray’s dead pan insults even more spine tingling as he mocks you uncontrollably.
So why was Ghostbusters: The Video Game ignored? Perhaps it’s the specific cult status which the franchise carries and when compared to the communities of Elder Scrolls and Mass Effects, this cult following is surprisingly small. Perhaps it was the messy gameplay that from an outside perspective seemed repetitive and boring. Perhaps it was the fact some believe Ghostbusters has passed its sell by date. (Proton packs will NEVER not be amazingly awesome).
It’s a shame really because from a game perspective, it’s pretty shoddy, but from a fans perspective it’s simply glorious. The gameplay may be manic but for many of us it was brilliantly authentic giving fights a certain amount of luck and chaos that the films so beautifully portray (“Don’t cross the streams!”). Many of the enemy types where also pretty special showing that Ramis and Akroyd are still full of ideas and the series still has potential.
So there we go. If you are a fan of Ghostbuster and know your Proton Pack from your Spectre Snare then Ghostbusters: The Video Game is a must buy, especially for the ridiculously cheap prices in the bargain bins. Whilst Batman Arkham City is Top 5 of this generation, Ghostbusters struggles to reach the Top 50, but the blow is softened due to it’s beyond generous fan service for all the budding Busters out there.
With its hilarious script, nostalgic characters, fantastic setting and divine weaponry, Ghostbusters: The Video Game is a hidden gem of the generation and a perfect example of how to make fanboys around the world weep buckets of geek-flavoured tears. Just don’t cross the streams.