As seen in Retro Gamer #259

Bustin' was included in the Homebrewer's Kit section pages of Retro Gamer magazine issue #259! Thanks to Mr. Andrew Fisher for the shoutout and for covering all the great homebrew projects.

Who you gonna call?

Gozer has opened portals to the spirit world and only the Ghostbusters can stop them. Can you save the city?

Select your favorite Ghostbuster and use your proton pack and traps to battle through 5 levels of intense arcade action.

How to play

Destroy portals to advance levels but don't let too many ghosts escape into the city. Every time a ghost escapes the slime meter will fill up. If the slime meter gets full, it's game over.

If you get slimed by a ghost you'll be stunned for a short period and won't be able to move or shoot. Be careful!

Use traps to suck in passing ghosts for a short time. You have limited traps and can only deploy one at a time. Bust orange ghosts to gain an extra trap.

Your proton pack can overheat if you fire it for too long and you won't be able to shoot. Switch levels if you need to cooldown your pack.

Game controls

The game can be played with any connected gamepad controller, arcade stick, or by using the keyboard. Gamepad controller or arcade stick is recommended for best experience.

Gamepad Keyboard In-game Action
Up/Down Up/Down arrows Change levels
B button Z Fires
A button X Throw trap
Start P or Enter   Pause, Toggle music

Mappings on your gamepad or controller may be different than shown. Use the pause menu to check and test mappings.

PICO-8 Console owners

For the best experience, play using the PICO-8 console on your computer or handheld gaming device. Buy PICO-8 for more great games

Download the cartridge image below or type load #bustin21 in the commandline. You can also find the game in Splore by searching for "bustin".

About development

My daughter loves Ghostbusters so I decided to make her a game...especially since the list of Ghostbusters video games is pretty short.

Primary inspiration is Midway's Tapper but rather than points and high scores, you're just trying to get through all the levels. I borrowed sprites from the New Ghostbusters II NES game released by HAL Laboratory circa 1990.


Special thanks to the PICO-8 community for their support, help, and inspiration. Visit the PICO-8 BBS for more great games and to learn how to make your own games.

PlatformsWindows, macOS, Linux, HTML5
Rated 4.8 out of 5 stars
(8 total ratings)
AuthorBrian Vaughn / MorningToast
Made withPICO-8
Tags2D, 8-Bit, Arcade, ghostbusters, PICO-8, Pixel Art
Average sessionA few minutes
InputsKeyboard, Gamepad (any)
LinksTwitter, Community


Download NowName your own price

Click download now to get access to the following files:

Bustin' for Windows 956 kB
Bustin' for Linux 713 kB
Bustin' for Mac 3.2 MB
PICO-8 Cartridge 33 kB

Development log


Log in with to leave a comment.

Hi Brian, loving your game. If its ok with you, id like to use your game concept/idea to develop my next game. Similar game style but based on something completely different to Ghostbusters. but i like the idea of having these different levels and a player moving up and down versus a wave of enemies. Happy to mention you in the credits as the original game concept developer.

Thanks...I'm happy my little game could inspire you! No need to give me credit unless you feel like it. I just took the old "Tapper" game concept and applied it to the Ghostbusters the mechanics and stuff are not original. Go watch Tapper if you haven't. Maybe it'll inspire more. Have fun!


I was surprised. I thought it would be ordinary but it's cute and fun! Very well made arcade style ghostbusters game inspired by "rootbeer tapper". Ghostbusters makes it even more interesting! I got 381 ghosts but "he slimed me". Nice game.

Very cool arcade game! Great graphics and awesome Ghostbusters theme.

My only complaint is that you can’t move without releasing the fire button, which makes the controls feel a bit unresponsive.


Awesome game. Really lovely!