This real world adventure game features incredible content for fans of this franchise, but its heavy reliance on microtransations slimes the fun for gamers. Ghostbusters World has no shortage of fan service pulled from the Ghostbusters movies, cartoons, games, and more. From instantly recognizable icons like Slimer and the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man to more obscure references like Gozer’s Tower and Tobin’s Spirit Guide, the location-based action/adventure is packed with references. But the game is more than just fan fluff though, with a surprising amount of depth and range in its play. Catching ghosts requires swapping weapons to wear out the spirits, knowing when to throw out traps, and sorting out which to keep and which to “destabilize” for materials. Players don’t just collect ghosts for the sake of collecting them, but rather use them to build teams to take into battle against other spectral strike teams in the Ghost Dimension. These turn-based fights add an extra layer of strategy and planning that makes this feel more substantial than most mobile games.
As much fun and as fully features as Ghostbusters World may feel, there’s one thing that haunts the overall experience: microtransactions. Microtransactions are nothing new to games, especially the free-to-play mobile kinds. But Ghostbusters World takes it to an extreme. The game walks players through the early tutorials with no problems, but afterwards, you’re left with very little in-game resources to progress with. Worse still, the grind to earn more borders on absurd. It takes hours to build just a handful of traps, which can get burned through in minutes during standard gameplay. It’s the same with power cells for your different weapons. Since you can only build one type of item at a time, you’ll spend a lot of the game just checking in long enough to pick up what you’ve built and start building again. The only way to avoid this is, you guessed it, by spending money for in-game “Gems”, which in turn are used for everything from speeding up actions to buying new materials to leveling up your spectral army. It sets up a hefty paywall to break through if you expect to make any real progress beyond the glacial pace of grinding.