The Ghostbusters Role-Playing Game series was produced by West End Games, and consisted of two core titles, namely Ghostbusters: A Frightfully Cheerful. : Ghostbusters: A Frightfully Cheerful Roleplaying Game [Box Set] () by Sandy Petersen and a great selection of similar New. Ghostbusters: A Frightfully Cheerful Role-Playing Game and Ghostbusters International ‒ colloquially and collectively called simply the.

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The initial title was a shameless cash-in of the first movie, with Ghostbusters International helping suck in more cash following the second movie.

Despite this, they were pretty darned good, and the system used was a precursor to the D6 System later used in many titles, including the Star Wars RPG. It’s also the first game to feature a dice-pool mechanic, which changed roleplaying games forever. BrainsMusclesMovesand Cool.

To create a character, simply spread 12 points chderful those four Traits, putting at least one in each. For normal characters, five is the highest any Trait can be at character creation, but that’s not a hard limit, and isn’t imposed on Frlghtfully or the pregenerated characters see Setting.

To perform an action, a player rolls as many six-siders as the character has in the relevant Trait and tries to beat a number set depending on the difficulty of the task.

Woah, hold on there. One of those dice has to be the Ghost Die, which doesn’t have a 6, it has a nifty ghost symbol. If that side comes up, the player is screwed; it’s a Bad Thing, and whether the roll makes it or not, Shit Happens.

Conversely, when a GM rolls a ghost, it works in the favour of the ghosts. Each of the four Traits gets a Talent, like a skill that’s associated with the Trait.

Ghostbusters – A frightfully cheerful roleplaying game

If it’s relevant to the roll like if Venkman is making a Moves roll to trick some hottie into bed with him, his Seduce Talent is absolutely relevant then 3 more dice get thrown in the pool. Even more dice can be added to the pool with the expenditure of Brownie Points, which were a very early showing of hero points. In the original game, they also acted as hit pointsbut that was later replaced by a slightly saner system in Ghostbusters International that just imposed penalties to Traits as characters got progressively beaten up.


The basic premise of the setting is that the original Ghostbusters, particularly Peter Venkman and Louis Tully, love to make money, and can see great potential in screwing over small groups of people that want to run Ghostbusters franchises all over the world.

The deal goes that the parent corporation will provide the hapless players with equipment and all that jazz, and in exchange will get a cut of the fees they charge. The Ghostbusters franchise will generally find its own customers or, more accurately, the customers will find them but the parent corporation can also step in and make the ‘Busters do a mission for free while they rake in the monies. This is amongst numerous powers to shit on the local franchise that the parent corporation has.

It’s arguable that this game can be played to have more bureaucracy than Paranoiaalso by West End Games, and comes with numerous photocopyable forms to get the players to sign, just like in Paranoia.

Ghostbusters™ The Roleplaying Game |

If that all sounds like too much, or the players really don’t have any imagination for generating original concepts, they can play the original Ghostbusters or Louis Tully or Janine Melnitz or Dana Barrett. Truthfully, those characters are probably better used as NPCs by the Ghostmaster. Whoever they play, the setting’s baddies aren’t limited to ghosts.

The full range of cheesy B-movie monsters are available and encouraged, so the ‘Busters might be facing off against vampires or creatures from the Black Lagoon or aliens, despite how thematically incompatible that would be with the original movies. While the Real Ghostbusters cartoon series isn’t treated as part of the game’s history, many of the concepts and storylines used in it would fit right in with the writing style of the RPG.

No given GM has to give in to using those elements, of course, but the followup supplemental adventures really jumped the shark with things like Hot Rods of the Godsan adventure about teenage aliens that felt like it was intended for a completely different game.

A Frightfully Cheerful Role-Playing Game was pretty fresh for its time, on the cutting edge of rules-lite which was just about to become zeitgeisty. It had little cardboard equipment cards and the encumbrance rules were that you could carry three of them.


Yes, that was the whole rule. The game had a lot in common with boardgames; it literally came in a box with a couple of books, some dice and the aforementioned cards. The illustrations were mostly of the stars of the movies, with little bits of text as quoted by Venkman, Spengler et al. A perfect gateway game to roleplaying. International was a bit different. The rules were more crunchy, much more in line with the majority of pen and paper RPGs.

Instead of equipment cards there were equipment lists, and there were rules frightfulyl distances in combat. The claim is that this was all in response to vheerful demand for more detailed rules, but that claim has never been substantiated and is unlikely to be, since West End Games is now defunct.

Cynics say it wasn’t broke, and didn’t need fixing. Extra cynics say the game was only pushed out because of the impending Ghostbusters 2 film. True believers appreciate the more complex rules, and appreciate that anything beside a one-shot would need more than the first game provided.

Ghostbusters: A Frightfully Cheerful Role Playing Game

Suffice to say, opinion was and still is divided. Do you see what I did there?

The Ghostbusters RPG has inspired other roleplayihg in two distinctly different ways. The first avenue of succession is the system. John Ross cheerfully admits the role this game played in inspiring Risusand all the D6 System games were to an extent derived from it even if they went on to become significantly less rules-lite.

The other path is that of the numerous rip-offs of the setting. There have been at least two quests, as can be seen in the archive. Ads by Project Wonderful! Your ad here, right now: Retrieved from ” https: Views Read Edit View roleplaylng.

Ghostbusters (role-playing game)

Navigation Main page Recent changes Random page Help. This page was last modified on 27 Mayat Privacy policy About 1d4chan Disclaimers Mobile view. Original precursor to D6 System.