Do we really need a Ghostbusters video game?

We come to terms with Ghostbusters' withdrawal from non-Sony consoles

Over the past 24 hours, Aussie and European gamers have been reeling from the news that Ghostbusters: The Videogame will be a PlayStation exclusive in PAL territories. It’s currently the top news piece on N4G.com, with all three Hot Stories devoted to the subject. Devastated Wii and Xbox owners have been blubbering into their digital soup in every forum across the globe, while the Sony elite smile smugly and release volleys of lazy trolls (i.e. “Who ya gonna call? Not Bill Gates!”)

As an Xbox owner, your fearless reporter got carried away by the hoopla as well, before coming to a sober and unbiased realisation: the game will almost certainly suck. Think about it. This is the same project that started life as a ropy Zootfly video demonstration. It has changed publishers' hands like a hot potato (or possibly a poisoned chalice?) with Atari bringing in Sony Computer Entertainment at the 11th hour, barely a month before the game’s release.

Details are currently sketchy as to how or why this new deal transpired. Did Sony, which owns the Ghostbusters movie franchise, somehow force Atari’s hand? Did Atari make a lucrative deal in a manner similar to GTA IV’s exclusive downloadable content? Or could it be that Atari is trying to distance itself from the game before it’s even released?

Somewhat tellingly, when Activision merged with Vivendi in 2007, it put the production of Ghostbusters on indefinite hiatus. Despite huge online interest in the game and a massive preinstalled fanbase, it chose to dump the project and allowed Atari to pick up the pieces. Not exactly a testament to a game's quality is it?

Now we’re not supposed to pass judgment on a game before we review it — to do so would be professionally irresponsible. But can you name us one good movie tie-in with a chequered production history like Ghostbusters? Eh? Eh? And what’s with adding Alyssa Milano to the cast? She's a bit long in the tooth to play the romantic lead, and she wasn’t even that good in Who's The Boss. And Egon's hair looks funny.

Oh sod it, we’ll stop pretending. It’s Ghostbusters! How could it not be awesome? Give us back Slimer, Sony! Give us back Venkman! Give us back Alyssa Milano! We’re so crushed we could almost cry.

We'll bring you a full review when the game comes out. [And don't worry — we won’t let a filthy Xbox or Wii owner review it. PlayStation for the win! — Ed.]

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Chris Jager

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