Skip to main content

‘Ghostbusters: Now Hiring’ unexpectedly launches for PlayStation VR

Ghostbusters: Now Hiring | Virtual Reality Experience
Surprise game releases aren’t unprecedented, but they certainly aren’t common. We usually know about a game many months, if not years, in advance of its launch. The steady ramping of hype gets gamers geared up for the game’s arrival. Unexpected releases hailing from classic intellectual properties? Even less likely. Ghostbusters: Now Hiring, a game not known to be in development, has launched for PlayStation VR.

Sony accompanied the unexpected release with a brief launch trailer. Comedian and actor Patton Oswalt plays the Icon Ghost — your guide. “I bet you’re here for the ghostbusting chops,” Oswalt says. This setup, which puts you in the shoes of a new Ghostbusters recruit, serves as a reintroduction to the franchise that stumbled last year with both the Ghostbusters film reboot and the game tie-in.

According to io9, Ivan Reitman, co-creator of the franchise, played a huge role in the project. “I think Ghostbusters is this wonderful [intellectual property] because it has so many storytelling opportunities,” Reitman said. “And it’s a particularly good one for VR.”

Now Hiring is a bit of an experiment, though. It’s an episodic venture, the first of which is called Firehouse, but by the sounds of it, you never actually enter the firehouse. Instead, Slimer breaks free and it’s up to you to catch him with the help of your proton pack, ghost trap, and Icon Ghost’s directions. Firehouse largely takes place in the Ghostbusters HQ, giving virtual reality users the opportunity to explore the hallowed walls. Don’t expect to explore for very long, however, as the entire episode runs about 10 minutes.

Speaking with io9, Sony’s senior vice president of VR Jake Zim claimed that the studio will wait for fan reactions to see if chapter two will be made. Interestingly, they want to hear from fans on possible directions for the narrative. “Ghostbusters is so big you can kind of go all over the place,” he said.

Ghostbusters: Now Hiring — Firehouse is available now for $7 on the PlayStation Store.

Editors' Recommendations

Steven Petite
Former Digital Trends Contributor
Steven is a writer from Northeast Ohio currently based in Louisiana. He writes about video games and books, and consumes…
PlayStation VR2 just got 2 fun shooters, but I’m still waiting to be wowed
Key art for Firewall Ultra.

For the past six months, PlayStation VR2 players like myself have been yearning for new reasons to boot up our headsets. And after a long wait, the VR platform is getting a much-needed infusion with two brand-new titles. It’s a cause for celebration, but a mild one; neither of PSVR2's latest titles does much to revitalize my shock and awe for the platform six months into its life span.

The two games in question are the exclusive, Sony-published Firewall Ultra from First Contact Entertainment and Crossfire Sierra Squad from Smilegate. Both are realistic-looking military shooters, although they are different in execution. Firewall Ultra is a Rainbow Six Siege-style, squad-based multiplayer game, while Crossfire Sierra Squad taps more into the genre’s arcade roots to create VR shooting galleries.

Read more
PlayStation Portal misunderstands remote play and cloud gaming’s appeal
A PlayStation Portal boots up.

Sony finally revealed more details about its upcoming handheld, now called PlayStation Portal, but these announcements have soured my opinion on the device rather than hyped me up for it. I enjoy cloud gaming and have used a variety of services like Google Stadia, Amazon Luna, and Xbox Cloud Gaming - across my phone and even dedicated devices like the Logitech G Cloud Gaming Handheld. Because of that, I was really excited to see what PlayStation could do as it entered the space. Unfortunately, some specific exclusions from PlayStation Portal's functionality that make it more of a remote-play device rather than a cloud gaming handheld indicate that Sony has a fundamental misunderstanding about what people would want out of a PlayStation game streaming handheld.

Namely, the device's positioning as primarily a "remote play dedicated device" and the exclusion of PlayStation Plus Premium cloud gaming compatibility drastically shrinks the number of reasons people should pick the device up. Cloud gaming and devices built around it have been around long enough to show that an inclusive approach to the number of services, games, and kinds of game streaming available is vital to success, and for a $200 handheld, PlayStation Portal seems like it's excluding way too much.
Narrowing its appeal
Remote play differs from what's more ubiquitously referred to as cloud gaming players are running the games on their own consoles rather than a third-party console or server. Still, it's a form of streaming games over a Wi-Fi connection, typically through an app on a phone or device like the Logitech G Cloud Gaming Handheld. That means you'll have to stick around your own home to use the PlayStation Portal, and its game library is limited to whatever the user owns on the console. That's limiting (it's like if Steam Deck only ran Steam Link) but does have some use cases. Still, it doesn't necessarily feel like it warrants a dedicated $200 device over a phone and a nice mobile controller like the Razer Kishi V2 or Backbone One - PlayStation Edition; haptic feedback and adaptive triggers only go so far.

Read more
PlayStation 5 Slim: All rumors and speculation
A PS5 stands on a table.

It's at around this point in a console's life cycle that companies like to release a new, slim model to reinvigorate sales, cut costs, and experiment with a new design. Sony has been trimming down its home consoles since the PS2, with each home console getting a slimmer, sometimes cheaper replacement a few years after launch. We're closing in on the PlayStation 5's third birthday and rumors abound about both a PS5 Pro and a PS5 Slim model, and yet Sony's remained tight-lipped about any iterations on the base unit. Still, some of these rumors and potential leaks may hold some weight and are fun to follow regardless to see how accurate they end up being.
Will there be a PS5 Slim? Here's what we know
Before getting into the rumors and leaks, know that until Sony itself confirms the existence of a PS5 Slim, everything that follows is speculative and should be taken as such.

The first rumors of a new PS5 model centered around a diskless version that could be paired with a detachable disk drive you could buy separately in another step away from physical media. This was speculated to be coming out sometime in fall 2023, but has been rolled into the idea of the PS5 Slim. This potentially imminent release date also lines up with statements Microsoft made about a new PS5 Slim releasing this year for $400 during the Federal Trace Commission (FTC) hearing.

Read more