Parents' Guide to

Ghostbusters: Spirits Unleashed

By David Chapman, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 10+

For multiplayer, ghost busting fun, who ya gonna call?

Ghostbusters: Spirits Unleashed packshot

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this game.

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If there's something strange in your neighborhood, who ya gonna call? The Ghostbusters, of course, but if you're looking for an action game that's equal parts spooky tension and hilarious humor? That's when you call Ghostbuster: Spirits Unleashed. From the opening moments, this game is a love letter to Ghostbusters fans. Following the events of Ghostbusters: Afterlife, Winston Zeddemore has decided to re-open the Ghostbusters franchise and you're its newest hire. The voice acting is extremely well done, and hearing Ernie Hudson and Dan Aykroyd respire their classic roles feels like a homecoming of sorts. In fact, every detail in the game, from the iconic firehouse with a shiny Ecto-1 parked and waiting to go to the signature sound of a proton packs powering up, makes you feel like you're a living, breathing part of the Ghostbuster universe. (Well, unless you're playing the ghost.)

For the most part, gameplay in Ghostbusters: Spirits Unleashed is a lot of fun. Admittedly, particle throwers aren't exactly the most precise weapons, but they still act like you imagine one would in real life. Controlling where your stream hits takes some practice, as does making use of the other available equipment. It takes time, for example, to learn how to read the blips and beeps on the P.K.E. Meter to best track down traces of ectoplasmic activity. For the Ghostbusters, working as a team is vital. Players cover each others' back while reassuring citizens, seeking out dimensional rifts, and dragging tethered spirits over well-placed open traps. Getting a good team together, with solid communication and general synergy makes this a total blast. On the flip side though, when you find yourself in a mismatched or even just toxic team, it can be more uncomfortable than an actual haunting. Speaking of which, playing as a ghost in Spirits Unleashed is surprisingly fulfilling. Your goal is mainly to cause a little paranormal panic instead of doing anything genuinely terrifying. Each ghost has its own unique set of abilities, with a host of different play styles to choose from. The game's balance also seems to hit a good sweet spot where neither side ever feels more overpowered than the other. While the game can feel a little repetitive over time, it's hard to deny that even after all these years, bustin' still makes you feel good.

Game Details

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