There’s a coolness in the air. The leaves have fallen and we’ve all been hiding under our blankets watching Stranger Things, waiting quietly in anticipation for some ghoulish good times. So what are your plans this Halloween? Staying at home, locking the door and eating the candy you bought, while crying in shame? Or are you dressing up as your favorite sexy Pokemon and hitting up your ex’s house for a little trick and treat? Whatever your plans are; wet your whistle leading up to the big day with a little playtime, and what better games to put you in the Halloween mood than a good ghost story.
1) Ghostbusters/Ghostbusters International- West End Games
Set in the same world as the movies, Ghostbusters offers characters the chance to set up a Ghostbusting franchise outside of the city if New York. West End Games made the rules system super light and uses six sided dice pools to resolve most challenges. The coolest part of this system is that it came with a ghost dice, which had the Ghostbusters logo instead of a six. It represented bad luck and when rolling if the logo came up it would cause some sort of accident or mishap. Pyramid magazine once wrote that Ghostbusters was the most under rated game of the millennium, and the first RPG ever to use a “dice pool” mechanic.
2) Ghosts of Albion- Eden Studios, Inc
Ghosts of Albion mechanics based upon Eden Studio’s Unisystem. It’s pretty generic and uses a point system to build attribute abilities, and a ten sided die to resolve challenges. The game focuses upon a more cinematic experience for the players, which is good since the established setting is based upon the books and films of the same name. Set in Victorian London, Eden did an excellent job of bringing a rich and detailed experience to the table, highlighting the horror of fighting demonic entities with the supernatural aid of England’s mightiest spirits. On a side note Eden offers a playable Army of Darkness module under it’s Unisystem.
3) Orpheus- White Wolf Publishing
Orpheus is part White Wolf’s World of Darkness product line and is a ghostly experience built upon the bones of its predecessors Wraith: The Oblivion and Geist: The Sin Eater. For those of you that don’t remember for a brief time White Wolf titles were cancelled as the company was having merger issues but all books are now available on DriveThruRPG. Orpheus differs from other World of Darkness titles as it focuses exclusively on ghost and spirits and creates a microcosm for itself within the larger setting. For this purpose White Wolf published a number of specifically planned adventures, which were in-depth and immersive. Not surprising since it uses the Storyteller System as its mechanic. What kinda makes this one special is that White Wolf wanted a strictly ghost-on-ghost experience, integrating other creatures or entities that weren’t spirits of some kind was extremely discouraged.
So the bell has wrung, it is the witching hour. Set up the table, turn out the lights, and bust out the dice. You might need some player though, so who you gonna call?
I am become death, destroyer of worlds.