Ghostbusters Spirits Unleashed: Illfonic Given Freedom to Create Own Ghosts & Tech, Talks About AI Bots

Just last week, Ilffonic announced that they are developing a new Ghostbusters game titled “Ghostbusters: Spirits Unleashed.” Thankfully, MP1st was invited to the reveal presentation, and we even managed to sneak in some questions to the dev team.

While we were pressed for time (which explains why this is quite short for an interview), we were able to ask about the Ilfonic’s inspiration to the game, and a few more. The studio confirmed that they were given freedom to create their own ghosts and even the tech the players will use in-game. Answering the questions are Illfonic CEO Chuck Brungardt, and Chief of Creative Jared Gerritzen.

MP1st: I know you mentioned the films being an inspiration for the game, but was there any material that the team looked at such as the animated series?

Jared Gerritzen: Oh yeah, absolutely. The real Ghostbusters, the comic books. I am a massive Ghostbuster fan. I grew up having all the action figures, I grew up making proton packs out of cardboard and running around with broken brooms and stuff. I’ve used a lot of that stuff, and we’re going through a lot of the canon of everything.

Ghost Corps (a production company formed by Sony Pictures to expand to Ghostbuster universe) has really given us carte blanche on not only making our own ghosts but our own technology and everything, so we are pulling inspiration from every single angle. You won’t see Transformers (referring to the 2019 crossover comic) in it, you won’t see the crossover to the other stuff, but we are really trying to get as much of the Ghostbusters universe into this game.

ghostbusters spirits unleashed

MP1st: The one thing I love about the studio is how you all seem to be able to capture a lot of small details from these IPs. From a fan standpoint of both Friday the 13th and Predator, I just love all the little Easter eggs scattered around the levels and cool hidden secrets. Can we expect to see cool Easter eggs and secret puzzles in Ghostbusters?

Jared Gerritzen: We do plan on when you hit certain things in the game, we will start to pepper some stuff throughout for sure. When I joined Illfonic, you know what they did with Friday the 13th: The Game, really inspired us to do that more with Predator. I definitely feel like I’m a massive Predator fan, but I think I’m a bigger Ghostbusters fan, so we’re gonna have a lot of that. I feel like Illfonic magic to the IP for sure, and of course Ghost Corps has been awesome as a partner, so they’ve been really helping us with a lot of those elements.

MP1st: Would you say that Ghostbusters shifted the way the studio makes asymmetrical games, I noticed there was a lot of verticality to the stage shown off.

Chuck Brungardt: Yes, it definitely has. For me it’s definitely different than anything we’ve done in asymmetrical and I feel like each one we’re doing something different in asymmetrical there’s a lot to that genre that we love. It’s fun almost creating two different games every time you do this. That’s why for me it’s a lot of fun and the challenges of making the two work together, so  for this, it was like, it made sense for Ghostbusters, but it did have us take a different approach, especially for a game that was essentially non-violent.

Jared Gerritzen: I feel like there’s nothing more heartbreaking than announcing a game and having someone say “oh I love this, but I hate multiplayer” so we took that to heart, and that’s why we’re adding AI to the systems and allowing people to play by themselves with AI Ghosterbusters and Ghosts.

We really took a lot of the feedback from Predator and Friday the 13th to heart. We’re spending a ton of time on backend technology and the systems that we have been working on live in Predator for the past two year, but bringing it here, we want to make sure that this Ghostbusters fanbase is as representative as we possibly can in a sense of like – okay you don’t play multiplayer games, but you can play this, you can be a Ghostbusters for the very first time, firing that particle thrower and doing damage in first-person. The previous game (Predator) was awesome but in third person and you were controlling someone, versus I am a Ghostbuster. That’s really what we want to make sure that they (the players) feel – I am going to be a Ghostbusters with this game. 

That’s about it. Sadly, we didn’t have enough time to ask some of the other questions we wanted (plus tech issue on our side,) but here’s to hoping that we’ll have another chance at it before the game is released later this year. Outside of the mini interview, we ran an in-depth preview of sorts of everything we learned during the game’s reveal, and compiled it into an easy-to-read bulletpoint format.

Ghostbusters: Spirits Unleashed will launch in Q4 of 2022.

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