Studios are always looking for ways to capitalize on the popularity of certain film properties that go beyond the big screen. Video games have long been one of the go-to avenues, since they allow fans to play as their favorite characters and explore the worlds of their beloved movies. Granted, most titles based on films aren't always the best quality, but the ideas behind them are typically strong enough, and they usually sell well. Star Wars: Battlefront received lukewarm reviews upon its release last fall, but surpassed EA's expectations commercially.
Ghostbusters is a realm that seems ripe for the video game treatment, since the feature films only scratch the surface of the franchise's potential. In fact, the series already had one game hit multiple platforms in 2009, described by Dan Aykroyd as "essentially the third movie." With the reboot opening in theaters this weekend, the time has come for another Ghostbusters game. You can watch the trailer for it above.
The preview humorously depicts a variety of ghouls goofing around in a classroom (which appears to be a school for ghosts), before an important announcement comes over the PA system. It's here where the basic premise of the game is outlined. There's a new team of Ghostbusters, and they've upgraded their equipment so they're better prepared to take down paranormal threats. Ending with the "homework assignment" to not get busted, the ghosts watch in fear as the ECTO-1 pulls up and a proton pack comes crashing through the window.
It's important to note that this Ghostbusters game is not an adaptation of the latest movie. The title is merely set in the same universe, and features all-new characters to play as. This is probably a smart decision, at least from an creative perspective. The developers had the freedom to go in any direction they pleased and weren't handcuffed by Paul Feig's film in one way or another. Based on the footage shown in the trailer, the game's primary feature is the ability for up to four people to co-op as a team as they fight their way through enemy ghosts. Other details are slim, but from the clip, it does look like it could be a great deal of fun.
In addition, Activision has announced that the Ghostbusters Ultimate Bundle is now on sale for $64.99. This includes a copy of the video game, downloadable content featuring four classic outfits and a bonus ghost trap, a digital copy of the reboot when it is available on home media, and two dashboard themes inspired by the film and game. There's also a new mobile app called Ghostbusters: Slime City, in which players assume the role of a ghostbusting recruit, designing new proton packs and other upgrades to take down ghouls. The app also gives people the ability to link up with friends and take part in community challenges, timed events, and PvP competitions.
Activision seems to have captured the tone and look of the Ghostbusters world in this game, rounding it out with an abundance of cool weapons and creature designs. That should help the gameplay feel varied, as fans determine the best strategies for taking down different poltergeists. It may not be another adventure with Venkman, Stantz, Spengler, and Winston, but it still gives people a chance to live out their dream of being a ghostbuster, which should prove to be very entertaining. Many have long wanted to run around the streets of New York to track down Slimer and the gang, and this is their opportunity.
The Ghostbusters video game is now available for Microsoft Windows, Xbox One, and PlayStation 4.