E3 Hands On: Is Ghostbusters a Spooky Good Time?

Wednesday, June 22nd, 2016

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Ghostbusters | oprainfall

Over in the Xbox section of the LA Convention Center, I picked up demo of Activision’s latest upcoming title, Ghostbusters on Xbox One. Taking place just after Sony’s new movie comes out on July 12, it is a four-player couch-only co-op (yes, I asked the person manning the demo multiple times to make sure that this was in fact not an online game for Xbox One) where you play as a Ghostbuster… and… you trap ghosts. In other words, just like how this franchise was started in the 1984 classic movie.

Ghostbusters | oprainfall

Each Ghostbuster plays differently and has a different main attack.

I hopped into the demo with three other players to play a stage titled Gertrude’s Revenge. From the onset, I could pick my Ghostbuster. All of the Ghostbusters had different weapons and different stats that I could scroll through when choosing which one I wanted to play. The gameplay is simple: Use your attacks to kill all of the enemies on the screen, move onto the next section, kill those enemies, move onto the next section. You will repeat this until you finally get to the ghost boss fight, where you will need to weaken the boss until you can finally deploy your proton streams to hold the ghost in place long enough to deploy a ghost trap.

There is an added twist, however. Your weapons can overhead if you spam your attacks too much, so every so often you will need to ‘vent’ your proton pack so it can cool down. There will also be random colored markings that will appear on the ground that you can enter into to receive bonuses to your score.

At the end of the Ghostbusters demo, we took on Gertrude. She required us to hit her with attacks repeatedly to weak her enough that we then had to all deploy our proton streams in order to ‘hold’ her in anticipation of a trap. In order to properly use your proton stream, I angled the joystick in the opposite angle of the stream and felt the controller vibrate correspondingly in return. After she was sufficiently ‘held’, I clicked a button and BOOM! she was trapped.

Ghostbusters | oprainfall

Four player couch co-op mode on Xbox One.

As three other people and I played along and slaughtered the fodder monsters (such as flying candlesticks and the like) in the Ghostbusters demo, we did not encounter too much difficulty, and it was fairly standard couch co-op fare. The gameplay was smooth and decent, but it really did not do anything to stand out. It was a kill, move on, kill, rinse, repeat cycle. The boss fight, however, was a different matter and that was where the gameplay shined and teamwork really became necessary.

Ghostbusters | oprainfall

I ain’t afraid of no ghost.

Overall, Ghostbusters is a game meant to be played with other people in your own home, and it is a radical departure from Activision’s 2009 title Ghostbusters: The Video Game. It comes out on PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC this July.

All images are courtesy of Activision.

Are you looking forward to the movie and game coming out in July 2016? Which of the first two movies are your favorite? Let us know below!

About Quentin H.

I have been a journalist for oprainfall since 2015, and I have loved every moment of it. Do you want to do an interview? You can reach me at interviews@oprainfall.com