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Ghostbusters took me on a trip down memory lane, but the experience hadn't become any sweeter with time. Although there is enough here for short lived fun and japes, longer sessions depend more on sentiment than solid gameplay.
Having all my mates around to play computer games is definitely one of the highlights of my evenings. I never thought I'd see the day when they would come around to play Ghostbusters though. Especially because half of them don't even remember the original film back in 1984 with the likes of Bill Murray.
Despite that, we cracked on and sat through the visually impressive, but rather cheesy intro scenes, whilst finding out that the game puts you in the shoes of a new recruit to the ghost busting team. It's your job to first impress the guys and then be an integral part of the team, blasting ghosts and trapping them whilst making as much mess as you can!
The game is set in 1991, which is two years after the second Ghostbusters movie. Equipped with a proton pack (The weapon designed to slap the ghosts around) and the famous grey suits, you first traipse your way through an in-game tutorial as you get to grips with the method of capturing and removing the ghosts.
My semi-psychopathic friends were a bit disappointed at their first attempt at trying to shoot Dr Peter Venkman (Bill Murray to us) with the proton beam. After shots to the ass, head and other areas he guys soon realised that there was very little reaction from the in-game character - maybe that's a good thing as we soon got on with doing what we were supposed to be doing: capturing the ghost!
To start, it was a little confusing, but after a bit of experimenting, we realised that the method was to blast the critter with your proton pack until he gets dazed, at which point you can then grab him. With a bash of the L2 button, you can swing and smash him around the walls and floor in an attempt to tire him out. Once tired, you then move him into a pre-placed trap. Sounds easy once you know how, and it is really - at least to start. Once you have a handful of them flying around, it does get trickier to keep a grab on him, whilst dodging tables and chairs being thrown at you.
Co-operative split screen mode that would of gone down well with the lads.
It did feel throughout that Ghostbusters were trying too hard to be funny. The game seemed to be littered with one-liners and hilariously un-funny comments from the original cast. It was almost cringe worthy when the characters slipped out a ‘funny' comment, whilst me and my mates sat there totally straight faced watching a tumbleweed fly past the screen.
Even the multiplayer was a bit disappointing. Rather than a co-operative split screen mode that would of gone down well with the lads, we found ourselves going online and taking on up to three other online gamers and blasting ghosts aimlessly in one of the four game modes.
So after my disappointed mates headed home, I decided to give the game another try. This is when I realised that actually the game isn't that bad. In fact, it's fun. Despite some annoying ‘dead' bits whilst you wait for one of the characters to say something so that you can proceed, the game itself is entertaining as you progress. The proton pack can be upgraded, and you earn the money to do that by destroying items around you whilst trying to smash the ghosts into submission. Or if you're like me, you'll find yourself blasting the tables and chairs instead for a bit of entertainment.
The more you play the game, the more interesting it gets.
The more you play the game, the more interesting it gets. Without my mates childish antics of shooting anything and everything they could, I found myself strangely addicted as more variations of the ghosts popped their slimy heads up. Maybe my original thoughts and negative thinking was simply because I wasn't a fan of the original films, but once I got past that negative aspect, I soon realised that the game does have a fairly decent element of entertainment to it.
If you're a fan of original films and cartoons (which I wasn't) you will absolutely love the original characters with the authentic actor voiceovers and entertaining gameplay. If you're just looking for your next third-person shooter to play with your mates and have a laugh, you might have to give the game a good bashing before you make your mind up.
With so many different perspectives it can be hard to know where to start - a little like walking into a crowded pub. Sorry about that.
But so far we've not found a way to streamline our review output - there's basically too much of it. So, rather than dilute things for newcomers we have decided to live with the hubbub while helping new readers find the columnists they will enjoy.
Our columnists each focus on a particular perspective and fall into one of the following types of gamers: