Monday, October 11, 2010
Naturally, I loved the Ghostbusters video game that came out in 2009 - it was an absolute dragon's hoard of fan service. It expanded on all the little details of the films, the pseudo-science behind them and their uniquely humorous occult mythos (you get to fight a fuckin' sloar! Nobody roasted in it's belly that day I can tell you!). The slavish revisiting of every location from the first film did get a little tiring, but it was forgivable when they got away from it in the later half of the game. I do have some issues with the story (did we really need a new young love interest for Venkmen to sexually harass into submission?), but otherwise it was perfect.
You see, at the end of the game there's a voiceover where your character (a nameless rookie) is sent to open their own franchise in another city. Now, back in the 8- and 16-bit days there were several shitty GB games, and a reoccurring theme was having to buy equipment and pick a model of car for the ECTO. Those games sucked, but the idea of building a custom Ghostbusters team stuck with me. What if you got to play that franchise - getting a building and vehicle, hiring a team? And all those things had pluses and minuses.
And what if, instead of a linear plot (the new game was a typical "hit all these stops on the way to save the world" structure), you answered calls from a variety of locations? A family thinks they have a poltergeist, a restaurant's staff is being driven off by black shapes... and of course you get paid when you succeed. Talking to my wife, I realized what I wanted was a Ghostbusters RPG.
Then I thought about the 80s. There was a pen-and-paper RPG for everything in the 80s. Licensed properties were hot - Teenaged Mutant Ninja Turtles, Star Wars, Marvel and DC comics, the list goes on. This continued into the 90s, actually - Men in Black jumps to mind. So what were the chances there was a Ghostbusters RPG?
And it is absolutely awesome.
LATER: Details on the Ghostbusters RPG, the revised rules known as Ghostbusters International, how to get a hold of them and why you want to.