Wednesday, 13 July 2016

How to run Ghostbusters 2016

As I snuck this note behind a cut, best do the same for this...

Paul Feig mentioned not wanting to go with the business startup angle in this interview. It has the knock-on effect of making the franchise setup that the original RPG ran with not really work, as the supernatural remains an open secret and the Ghostbusters have to work for the authorities on the down-low and pursue their own research rather than taking cases. So it’s closer to a classic urban fantasy masquerade kind of setting...

We have the Ghostbusters as a secret everybody in New York knows about, dealing with someone who weaponised their theoretical tech after reading Erin and Abby’s book. So the technology is out there, unsuccessfully suppressed. So there could be garage proton pack builders all over. There’s a hook for new groups of PCs. College kids would make sense to be trying this kind of thing. College kids in a sort of haunted town using kludged-together busting tech would be a bit Buffy, but have you met me?

We have government agents trying to put the cat back in the bag, dealing with strange phenomena and hushing stuff up. There’s another - it works for Men In Black, right? Only here they have to beg, bribe and threaten people to go along with the secret.

On the other side of that divide, you could play paranormal investigators trying to get the story out. In this particular setting this seems like they could actually succeed...


  1. Very happy to see the GB stuff you're posting! I didn't know about the masquerade angle of the new film...I kind of like that even more than the traditional setup!

    Also (and I promise I didn't post here just to plug this), if you are a fan of The Black Hack, you enjoy my minigame Ghosthackers here: It's basically an unoriginal mashup of WEG Ghostbusters and TBH...two of my favorite rules-light games...!

    1. Um...that was supposed to be "might enjoy." It was a thought, not a command...!

    2. I liked the "working stiff" aspect, but what the hey.

      Rolling a ghost as 20 on a d20 makes it less common... maybe 19 or 20?

    3. That's not a bad call. I often feel like the ghost comes up TOO often in the WEG game (or maybe I just don't feel like I can come up with something else clever on the spot), but upping the odds from 1/20 would be good. I might try every crit (hit OR miss) adding a complication. (Could even put it into the hands of a player who critically misses for that "story game" feel...) Thanks for checking it out!!

    4. It does seem to come up a lot. Last time I ran it I had to check the players only had one Ghost die...