What is this Game?
Ghosthunter is an action/horror/comedy game about a cop called Lazarus Jones (Rob Paulsen) who is called in with his partner Anna Steele (Nan MacNamara) to investigate a mysterious murder - Professor Brook has been accused of killing multiple students, but he has disappeared, so it is up to Lazarus and Anna to find out what really happened and if necessary, bring Professor Brook in. Unfortunately, things don't go according to plan...
Ghosthunter was released in 2003, Published by SCEE and made by Cambridge Studios, the minds behind Primal and the Medievil series among others. It's a fairly fun third person shooter, although the primary draw is in the writing - while Lazarus is a terrible idiot with moments of funny dialog, the show is stolen from the very first video by the AI, and the main villain, the undead noble, Lord Hawksmoor, voiced by Shakespearean actor and Dumbledore, Michael Gambon, who is having a lot of fun with the role.
Visually the game is pretty good with a strong aesthetic and cool monster designs, although a major flaw I found is that the game gets very hard towards the back half - I may resort to an infinite health cheat to get through the last levels but I'll try to play fair as far as I possibly can. Make no bones about it though - if I find myself failing to progress, I will start cheating, but only that one cheat will be necessary. I'll let the game supply me with the ammo that it deigns to give, and hell, I may even get though it without needing the health code at all but I'm not too proud to make use of the tool if needed.
Reception on Release
Ghosthunter received middling reviews, generally in the 60% area, but I personally had a lot of fun when I first beat this game a couple of years ago.
This game has fairly interesting plot elements, so please don't discuss things that we haven't explicitly seen yet. If it is in one of the posted videos, it will become fair game but until then let the game tell it's story in it's own time.
Lazarus Jones: The Primary character and lead dumbass, Lazarus accidentally releases hundreds of ghosts from containment and makes a huge mess, then his partner gets stolen by the lead ghost. Whoops. Lazarus has a (completely unearned) cocky streak that can get a little annoying in the early parts of the game, but we'll see how he plays out. (Voice: Rob Paulsen)
Anna Steele: The Lazarus's long suffering partner. Despite the game trying to make out that she's tough stuff mostly kind of happens to her, which is a shame. (Voice: Nan MacNamara)
Hawkmoor: A long dead lord who is apparently trying to use a young woman (The girl in the intro initially, then Anna when that falls through) to make himself alive and in the flesh again. Not very well developed but very well written (or at least sold) dialog-wise. (Voice: Michael Gambon)
AI: A mysterious AI, Loyal to the missing Professor Brook. Enlists Lazarus' aid in recapturing all the ghosts that his foolishness unleashed. Takes no shit, and is awesome.
Paw: The patriarch of the Hillbilly clan. A stern but loving father with a distrust of strangers and a large amount of hatred for Madame DeMontford, who has kidnapped his daughter. Initially he and his sons fight against Lazarus using astral projections due to thinking he's in league with DeMontford (Voice: Andre Sogliuzzo)
Billy Boy: Paw's younger son, somewhat highly strung but a good shot with a rifle. (Voice: Fred Tatasciore)
Junior: Paw's elder son, the dumbest of the three but not a bad kid.
Madame DeMontford: A somewhat unhinged widow. After the loss of her son to Old Croc, she grew resentful of Oakville and started to think that they put their daughter in danger on purpose in order to lure her son to his death. (Latest Vid Revelation:)Shot herself shortly afterwards. Her ghost murdered every child in Oakville to avenge her son, and enslaved their souls to protect her mansion. (Voice: Jane Hamilton)
Hillbilly Child (Deceased): A young girl who was being menaced by Old Croc one day. David DeMontford attempted to rescue her, but failed. (Voice: Kim Mai Guest)
David DeMontford: The son of Lady DeMontford. A pillar of the community, and the best citizen that Oakville ever had. Died trying to rescue the Hillbilly girl from the menacing Old Croc. His mother didn't take it too well...
David and Old Croc have since merged into the Swamp Phantom, and endlessly fight in a ghastly physical metaphor for their living days.
Freddie Fortesque: A soldier who lived, and died, in the 1930s. He was set to guard the Dagger of Poseidon, but his Captain had other ideas. (Voice: Michael Cochrane)
Captain Kraken: A well meaning man who was disturbed at the thought of being on the same boat as the cursed Dagger of Poseidon. Feuded with Freddie constantly until the curse of the dagger warped his mind, causing him to commit a mutiny. He and Freddie killed each other in the Melee. As his crew were killed along side him, they joined with him and formed the ectoplasmic titan known as the Beast.
Electric Guardian: A cop formerly known as Frank Agglin, he was driven to madness by the influence of Lord Hawksmoor and murdered his wife in front of his daughter. It is implied that that was only the start of a spree killing that got him convicted and sent to death row. The shock of the Electric Chair killed what was left of Agglin, so all that remains is the pain of what he has lost, his former life all but forgotten as he seeks only to inflict pain upon others as Hawksmoor's Pet. (Voice: Andre Sogliuzzo)
Professor Richmond (Alias: Professor Brooke): An ex-military researcher for a project that was intended to weaponise Ghosts but never properly got off the ground. For unknown reasons he now has been fighting them for years, with Hawksmoor serving as his nemesis. Fairly resentful at his AI clone replacing him with Lazarus without consulting him. (Voice: Joe Morton)