Was Ghostbusters Paranormal Blast Supposed to Be 2012's Pokemon Go?

Gotta' Bust'em All? XMG Studios had a GPS-based augmented reality game 4 years before Nintendo.

There's something strange in the neighborhood... as your friends and family are being turned into Pokemon trainers.

There's something weird... as you watch total strangers wander aimlessly around your local mall or park, chasing creatures you can't see.

But, is Pokemon Go the ghost of something that came before?

Hey! Anyone See a Ghost?

Way back in ethereal past of the year 2012, XMG Studios foretold of such spooky goings-on at PAX East 2012. And then again later at San Deigo Comic-Con 2012. 

They showed iOS and Android users how to turn their devices into ghost hunting equipment using their GPS locator, then actually seeing the ghosts on the screen when no one around them would be able to.

The game Ghostbusters Paranormal Blast meant anyone could become a Ghostbuster in their own cities, chasing down the spooky and kooky.

Who Ya' Gonna' Call? Well, you could have called yourself on your iPhone and caught ghosts with it.

Your Girlfriend Lives in the Corner Penthouse... of Spook Central

The basic concept of Paranormal Blast is the same core idea of Pokemon Go, gotta' bust'em all. 

Working your way up through the ranks, your Recruit character would earn points by capturing meaner and meaner spirits. It also allowed you to upgrade your Proton Pack and Ghost Traps, so you could catch the tougher ones.

Using your device's GPS locator, you could see where nearby ghouls have been spotted before setting off to bust'em.

Does any of that sound familiar there, Pokemon trainers?

Once on the scene, you would then look around for the beasties. Using blasts from your Proton Pack to weaken the ugly little spuds, until finally throwing out a Ghost Trap to snag'em.

For a four-year old game, this was pretty cool. And what a concept for it's time. 

It brought together gaming, social interaction and virtual reality entertainment back when Oculus Rift and true VR gaming was just a Kickstarter. 

 But, it was doomed to only low to fair ratings and it's timing was terrible. The innovative concepts just didn't capture the imagination as capturing Pokemon does today or these games might. It died quietly. In fact, XMG Studios doesn't even mention it on their site. 

The Dead Rising From the Grave!

Sadly, this title is no longer available at the iTunes or Google Play stores.

And a warning, you may actually find links to download the app via Google but the sites (like MOB.org) do not review well regarding potential viruses etc. In other words, best to let this corpse stay down. For now. 

But, the release of the new Ghostbusters movie and the popularity of Pokemon Go just screams that someone dig this title up and bring it back from the grave.

Are there other dead and gone game apps you'd love to see come back or get rebooted?

Published Jul. 13th 2016
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