Its been 35 years?!?!?! The original Ghostbusters are a huge part of my childhood that has produced so much different merchandise from over the years. But videogames were something that the Ghosterbusters never realy translated into. Or at least a game that I would call good. Then came along the Xbox 360 and Ghostbusters: The Video Game made its debut and we finally had a true classic on our hands. Wrangling ghosts, listening to your favorite characters do voiceover work, and cues from the original movie made for an absolutely fantastic game. Now, here we are in 2019. A lackluster new Ghostbuster’s movie came out and we sit without a Ghostbuster’s game on the newest generation of consoles. That has now changed as we now have the remastered Xbox 360 game to love and enjoy. But does it translate well into next gen?
Next Gen is all about high resolutions and realistic graphics. While there is very little realistic about the Ghostbusters in general, one would expect a complete makeover in the visual department for this Xbox 360 classic. Well, you’ll see substantial visual changes throughout the game but it is mixed with subpar visuals that seemed to get a little bit of new paint over top of the old paint. At times this makes for a hodge podge of visuals. Don’t get me wrong, the game as a whole looks great and things are smoothed out pretty well from the character faces to the detail in ghosts. It’s more about the environmental textures that I had issues with. More than not, the old textures just seem to stand out a little too much in this visual upgrade. There are also times though when the levels and the game as a whole look fantastic. Especially, in the museum level. Saber Interactive did a great job bringing this game forward and enlisted the help of many others.
The audio includes all the original music and voices of the original cast including everyone’s favorite person, Peck. Yes, Peck makes his return as well and he is a pr….err..Peck more than ever. I just want to see him doused in a big glob of marshmallow again. The game is presented in a movie style fashion with great dialogue, musical overlays and interludes and superb acting from the entire cast. Well, I will say Bill Murray at times does not seem enthused to be doing the voiceover work. But then again, its Bill Murray. When is he ever overly enthused.
So, some quick backstory to what the game is about. You play the role of the fifth Ghostbuster, a rookie brought on and well, it’s his first week on the job. You’ll hear plenty of references to the previous movie from Dana Barret to Gozar and even get an appearance from the Stay Puft marshmallow man. The events that took place in the movie happened a few years earlier according to the game. Alyssa Milano plays the role of Illysa in this game which is basically the new Dana Barret. She seems to be the focus of the ghosts so you’ll be saving here throughout the game. Ghosts will be causing havocs in all the city hotspots and you’ll even visit their own dimension which they are trying to merge with the real world. It’s up to you and the team of Ghostsbusters to stop them.
If you haven’t played the game previously, you will notice that the writing in this game is fantastic. Why is that? Well, Dan Akroyd and the late Harold Ramis had hands in the storyline throughout. Basically, think of this as Ghostbusters 3. Everything in this game is approved by the creators of Ghostbusters and it shows. You’ll have your proton pack strapped to your back and there will be plenty of upgrades at your disposal as you earn money. Different beams are used for different entities, opening doors, moving things and more. You’ll have to figure out which beam to use for what scenario as you progress along. The game will help you through the AI giving you hints if you are stuck. Wrangling ghosts is pretty straight forward, wrestling them until they are tired and then sucking them into a trap. Some ghost, more so the minions, need to just be destroyed rather than caught. Be sure to catch scans of all the ghosts using your PK Meter though. Its and achievement down the road.
The game plays as you remember it from the 360. Its solid and fun. Only now, it has that extra polish and frankly the cut scenes look amazing. I really did feel like I was watching a movie at times, not so much from the graphical quality but more on how it was all presented. The team did a great job polishing everything up and bringing the audio to a whole new level. Now, you will notice some weird audio moments during dialogues. It’s almost as if you can hear them standing in a room reading their lines because there is a slight echo in the background. I only noticed it here and there, but when it happened it was very evident. I love Alyssa Milano to death, but not sure she was up for this as her character can seem very out of place at times even though she is a main part of the story. Again, not sue if that comes from playing through this game again or the makeover, but something doesn’t seem right at times.
One thing that I have to thoroughly suggest is to check out the little videos in the Extras section. It’s fantastic bonus content and gives you a lot of insight into how much passion was put into this game not only from the developer side, but also from the cast themselves. The Ecto 1 documentary is fantastic and I never realized they restored the actual car from scratch. Do yourself a favor and definitely check these videos out.
With all of that said, is this a game you should pick up even if you played the 360 version. Without a doubt, I say absolutely. It’s the best Ghostbusters game we have ever had and it definitely is an upgrade from the 360 version. But just playing through this again feels fresh and exciting. It’s like watching the movie over and over again. It never gets old. There are plenty of collectibles to be found, lots of ghosts to be scanned and so many little hidden gems. You’ll definitely want to explore everything to find Easter eggs galore. So, my answer is yes this is a must have for an fan of the franchise and it’s a must play for anyone that has not played it on the 360. New paint, new audio and great gameplay is a win for gamers and Ghostbuster fans! Now get to bustin’ ghosts!
Score: 90 out of 100
*** A Copy of this game was provided by the publishers for review purposes.