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Ghostbusters Wiki

Note: The name of the Rookie from the Realistic Versions, Bryan Welsh, applies only to IDW Comics Canon.
See Name and References for more information

The Rookie is the main protagonist in the Ghostbusters: The Video Game, hired as the team's new "Experimental Equipment Technician" to test out Egon Spengler's new gadgets and do grunt work.


Primary Canon

The Rookie arrived at the Firehouse for his first day of work in late November 1991 when a Psi Energy Pulse suddenly passed through. With the modified Proton Pack prototype strapped on, the Rookie faced his first entity, Slimer. However, during the attempted bust, the Sloth Ghost was released from the Containment Unit after the Rookie shot it by mistake. When the Sloth Ghost was recaptured and returned to the grid, the mission to recapture Slimer began. The Rookie soon became embroiled in an Apocalypse event with the other Ghostbusters and proved his mettle as they unraveled the machinations of the Cult of Gozer.

After Ivo Shandor was destroyed by the Ghostbusters, the Rookie was offered the opportunity to lead a potentially lucrative Ghostbusters franchise in Chicago, Los Angeles, or Cincinnati, but whether or not he takes the offer is unknown.[1]

Secondary Canon

IDW Comics

Bryan Welsh answered an ad placed by the Ghostbusters seeking a participant in the active development of new proprietary technologies. He started out as an intern with the Ghostbusters before being graduated to guinea pig for an experimental advanced Proton Pack.[2][3] In Thanksgiving 1991, the three Rookies Bryan Welsh, Maddie Collins, and Chad Fuller made newspaper headlines for their part in the battle with the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man in Times Square.[4][5] He went through an intensive training program.[6] After the Shandor incident, the Rookie's experimental pack shorted out in Las Vegas, Nevada. By the time of the Gozerian Terror Bear incident, Bryan Welsh, the Rookie, was no longer working with the Ghostbusters in New York.[7] Chad Fuller and Maddie Collins[8][9] were no longer working for them either. Bryan, the Rookie, settled in Chicago to start up a new franchise. However, a local bureaucrat wouldn't allow Rookie to start a training program and hire locally.[10] Thus, he couldn't even get a union certification.[11] He endured by exploiting whatever loopholes he could find such as hiring temps from Minnesota for when something big came up and hired unwitting people to serve as bait.[12] He kept the experimental Proton Pack and his "Rookie" name tag as a good luck charm and it deflected angry clients.[13] Despite the bad, Rookie came to love Chicago.

Years later, Rookie was reunited with the Ghostbusters when they stopped in Chicago at the tail end of a summer cross country trip. Together, they trapped a Ghost Shark on North Lake Shore Drive near the John Hancock Center. Afterwards, Rookie treated everyone to some pies at Dick's Pizza. After Rookie told the guys about his ongoing issues, Peter advised him to take a full Trap to the antagonistic bureaucrat's place and have an "equipment failure" in order to continue forward with his franchise's development. The guys bid Rookie goodbye and returned home to New York. The next year, in February, Janine called the Rookie for help after the Ghostbusters were kidnapped by The Collectors. However, he was too busy dealing with the ghost of a Prohibitionist who turned the Chicago River into non-alcoholic beer.[14]

The Chicago Ghostbusters grew by one and Rookie was joined by Ron Alexander following the Ghostbusters' return from the Collectors' Limbo. Ron was billed as a technology consultant from the New York office, circumventing Rookie's hiring issues. Rookie soon became very irritated with Ron for bossing him around in front of clients, taking all the credit for a bust, and for leaving him to do all the hard work when a woman caught Ron's eye. While they were split up searching a building, Rookie confronted Ron about his qualms. Rookie refused to be ignored and kept on talking over the radio. However, Ron was a little preoccupied with the Red Blob on the 13th floor. In September, the Chicago Ghostbusters visited a Nevermore Elementary School class. The students were upset they weren't the Ghostbusters from New York. Rookie tried to remind them of the Ghost Shark he caught but a student pointed out the Ghostbusters did that. Ron took control and continued despite Rookie's glares. After Ron told his story about a Bogeyman, Rookie admitted that while they never encountered one, all the legends and what they've seen lent some credibility to its existence. After Ron lost his temper and threw chairs at the students, they were both escorted off school premises. Rookie was aghast Ron hoped a Bogeyman would go after the student, Jason, who insulted his hair. Rookie filed a report with the New York office about the Bogeyman sighting.[15]

Dr. Selwyn called on the Chicago Ghostbusters to look over a new World of Gozer exhibit. Rookie was more than happy to help but he was surprised the stuff wasn't all destroyed after the Shandor incident. Selwyn revealed the artifacts were newly discovered. Almost on cue, Ron was jumped by The Ghost and The Darkness. Rookie ignored Ron's plight and followed P.K.E readings. Plus, he figured Ron would probably be fine. Rookie's hunch paid off and the bigger threat was discovered, an active Gozerian artifact. After Selwyn confirmed a warning written in Gozerian, Rookie destroyed the artifact. Ron, in standard fashion, gave the lions' bloodied skin and mused she could sew it up. Rookie admonished him for disrespecting another client, but Selwyn was undeterred.

Rookie was part of the team that filled in for the Ghostbusters during the wedding of Winston Zeddemore and Tiyah Clarke. During the ceremony, the team responded to a call from Bates CPA, PC. Rather than take the lead, Rookie deferred to Special Agent Melanie Ortiz. Rookie took solace in Melanie ordering Ron around. After Kylie Griffin freed the Five Points Killer's victims, she and Rookie escorted them to safety. They returned just in time. Once Melanie ducked, Rookie shot and confined the ghost in a Proton Stream while Kylie trapped it. Rookie then tried to help the injured Ron into Ecto-1b. Over a couple weeks, Rookie was among those who joined the Ghostbusters in confronting Tiamat and later Vigo on Hart Island. After Ron shot Vigo at point blank range and was thrown, Ron inexplicably landed on Rookie.

After the Hart Island battle, the Chicago Ghostbusters were called back to Chicago to deal with the ghosts of slaughtered cows from the stockyards of decades past who were running through the Magnificent Mile and goring the tourists. Rookie and the rest of the Chicago Ghostbusters went with Kylie to Japan to search for the Map to Nikulausson's Tomb. He, Kylie and their guide went ahead while Ron, Dani, and Lou distracted several Yurei. Rookie was leery of the cave where Kylie was detecting a P.K.E. reading. Rookie's fears were confirmed when the map's guardian possessed the guide and ordered them either leave the map or die. Rookie didn't like either options and opened fire. To his shock, Kylie gave up and threw the map on his Proton Stream. She trapped the ghost after it refused to free the guide. He took offense when Kylie referred to his Ghostbusters as idiots when she did something just as stupid, unaware she had a photographic memory.

During a search of the tenth floor of The Trask Hotel, Rookie and Dani were paired together. Dani was unable to detect anything on her P.K.E. Meter and asked if it was broken again. Rookie swore he just calibrated it and checked. He asked if her copy of the "Spooky Chicago Tour Guide" had anymore clues about the hotel. Dani admitted it was just a prop she was using to brand herself as the "team researcher". They were prompted to rejoin Ron and Lou elsewhere. After pushing their way through a small flood of red Ectoplasm, Rookie and Dani trapped the Killer in Black. Like Lou, they also hated the smell of Ron's new Ghost Attractant. The Woman in Blue appeared and thanked them. She confirmed he was the ghost of her murderer. Rookie recalled Ray Stantz always said it was common for the ghosts of killers to fixate o the ghosts of their victims but he never believed it until now. Rookie was shocked when Ron trapped her despite a request from the Trask Manager not to. Ron told him he had a lot to learn about upselling then asked the manager how much the Woman in Blue was worth to the hotel. Rookie helped trap all of Connla's Army on Liberty Island weeks away from Halloween. Egon Spengler asked the rest of the Chicago Ghostbusters for their help in retrieving ghosts that escaped from the Containment Unit and escaped into the multiverse. All of the teams involved in the operation gathered in the Warehouse.

While the Ghostbusters were preoccupied with finding and recapturing the ghosts missing from their Containment Unit, a P.K.E. spike near the George Washington Bridge went unnoticed and a Doom Ghost manifested then enveloped the area in a purple fog. Special Agent Melanie Ortiz borrowed Winston Zeddemore, Jillian Holtzmann, Rookie, Dani, and Lou for the case. Rookie suggested a setting on the Ecto Goggles that would help them see through some of the ghost's fog. Dani picked up two readings with Holtzmann's P.K.E. Meter. Rookie didn't believe it at first but verified it with his meter. Holtzmann suggested splitting up and chose Lou and Dani for her team. Rookie asked where Holtzmann was from. Winston wanted to say Mars but said the jury was still out. Melanie, Rookie, and Winston eventually provided cover fire but the ghost vanished again. Lou and Dani yelled at Rookie for letting it get away. Rookie countered the fog was hard to navigate. Winston joked Ron's personality was contagious. Holtzmann realized the fog was the ghost and broke into the Lighthouse. She activated the searchlight and fog horn. Holtzmann's theory was correct and the ghost revealed its true form after its senses were rattled. Rookie readied a Trap and they soon captured it. The Chicago Ghostbusters volunteered to monitor the Containment Unit just in case anymore ghosts escaped while the other teams jumped to other dimensions in search of the missing ghosts.


The Video Game

Despite Ray Stantz asking for his name, Peter Venkman noted they should not get to know the Rookie's name for fear of getting too attached; especially after "what happened to the last guy."[16] However, this doesn't stop the team from calling him by several nicknames such as Sport, Hoss, Ace, Cadet, Rook, and Newbie. The name patch on his uniform simply reads "Rookie."

When the team returns from Times Square after facing the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man, a message is left on the Firehouse's call waiting service, with an older male voice stating: "You're doing adequate work out there, Rook, keep it up!" and sometimes you can hear Winston Zeddemore saying "Slam it, Rook!" in the Times Square level. The phonetic similarity led many to incorrectly believe the Rookie's name is Luke.

IDW Comics

In the IDW Comics Canon, Tristan Jones created the name Bryan Welsh for the Rookie from the Realistic Versions.[17][18] The name "Bryan Welsh" is a play on Ryan French, the person the Rookie from the Realistic Versions was modeled from.


The Rookie is notably quiet, most likely to give players the ability to enjoy the interactions of the primary Ghostbusters and is sometimes portrayed as being quite clumsy (e.g. slipping off ledges, falling through a trap door, accidentally zapping a tree with his Proton Pack and being hit by moving book-cases). Very little is known about the Rookie, due to his quietness. He seems to be in his 20s.

If the player starts to slam lots of ghosts really hard, members of the team will say things like; "You're playing hardball, Rook!", or "NOBODY messes with the kid!". The Rookie is still shown to be a bit skittish at times as displayed when running away from a Golem or as seen in the Graveyard level, where he seems to be visibly scared at times. This is also true back in the Firehouse, as when he enters the bathroom and activates the showers he flinches with a yell from the intense heat from the water. He does manage to save the Ghostbusters a couple of times including on the Shandor Island level.

Despite being a bit clumsy as well as scared, he can be confident and brave at times. He was the only remaining Ghostbuster to rescue the team from Shandor Island, as well as being the Ghostbuster to defeat Stay Puft. He is also very happy with his job, being seen high fiving Winston at the library and normally being the first one to shoot at a ghost.

He seems to have a nice relationship with Ray, being seen with him more than any other Ghostbuster and sharing in Ray's cheers of delight. Just like the other members of the team, he is seen being very easily annoyed by Walter Peck, including groaning and sighing when Peck threatens the team. He even shoots down Peck from his chains at the end of the game, dropping him on the hard ground.

Other versions

In the DS Version, the Rookie does not appear in the game at all. Instead, Egon, Ray, Peter and Winston are the protagonists.

In the Stylized Versions, there is also the choice to play as a Male Rookie or Female Rookie, however the Ghostbusters still refer to her as a him. Only in the Stylized Versions can the Rookie's gender be changed from default male to a female Rookie.


The Rookie was the center of a massive internal fight between Terminal and Vivendi and later Atari. The belief was that players should play as the cast but Terminal fought for the Rookie on the basis that fans would want the original Ghostbusters to have the same chemistry as in the movies and playing as them would upset the timing.[19] In 2006, the original Player character was modeled after Eric Schatz, a Terminal Reality level designer, but was replaced to due to a striking similarity to Half-Life's Gordon Freeman character.[20][21] In reality, the model was always a temporary character made only for the green light build.[22]

Sierra associate producer Ryan French was the basis for the look of the Rookie, because the developers needed a "cheap and easy actor." After the green light build was approved, the development team knew they would have to select a new person to provide his likeness for the Rookie. Ryan French immediately volunteered and was met with some skepticism. There was another character that was supposed to portray the Rookie but Terminal couldn't make it work for "political reasons."[23] At some point, it was decided a Hollywood celebrity actor would not be used for the Rookie's likeness. A few months later, the team approached French and asked if he was still interested. French agreed and Sony and Sierra ultimately agreed to use him.[24][25][26]


"Me too" is a line falsely believed to be spoken by the Rookie as the Ghostbusters are about to cross the streams to defeat Ivo Shandor. It is in fact Peter Venkman's line, which can be verified if one plays the game with subtitles on. The Rookie has no lines of dialogue in the game. He does, however, scream, grunt, and gasp a lot. Occasionally, he looks like he is going to speak only to be interrupted by one of the other Ghostbusters. However, he does speak in the IDW Canon in all of his appearances.


  • For a short time, John Belushi was considered for the face of the Rookie but it was decided it would have been too much of a distraction.[27]
  • At one point, Terminal Reality Character Artist Jesse Sosa pushed hard for John Candy to be the Rookie.[28][29]
  • At one point, Sarah Silverman was considered for a female Rookie and Andy Samberg for a male Rookie.[30]
  • Ghostbusters: Times Scare! was originally going to be a mini-comic included in Ghostbusters: The Video Game to explain why the Rookie was hired.[31] The comic was repurposed by IDW with all references to the game removed.[32]
  • On the Subscription Cover of Ghostbusters Volume 2 Issue #1, Rookie's photo is to the right of Janine.
  • In Ghostbusters Volume 2 Issue #4, Peter likens Rookie to a Junior Birdman of America, a club for boys interested in building model airplanes.[33]
  • On March 5, 2015, the 19th stretch goal of Ghostbusters: The Board Game, $980,000, was introduced: Rookie.[34]
  • On March 8, 2015, Rookie was unlocked.[35]
  • On his Ghostbusters: The Board Game character card,
    • Rookie's employee ID # is listed as 222 79 0625.
    • Rookie is depicted with his experimental pack from The Video Game
    • Rookie's true name of Bryan Welsh is from the IDW Comics continuity and established by writer/artist Tristan Jones as a play on Ryan French, the person Rookie was modeled after for the game.
    • States his issue date was 1991. The events of The Video Game took place during the Thanksgiving 1991 holiday weekend.
    • Mentions being an intern initially and now leading his own franchise in Chicago. This mirrors his story in the IDW Comics continuity.
    • Rookie is wearing the Chicago franchise blue flightsuit from Volume Two Issue #13.
  • In Ghostbusters International #9, on page 12, panel 2, Rookie is seen with a rope. It is common practice for visitors of the Aokigahara Forest to use a method to cover their tracks so they don't get lost. Some methods are leaving plastic tape on the forest floor, looping plastic ribbon around trees, and those unsure of suicide tie white ropes to trees.
  • In Ghostbusters International #9, on page 16 and 17, Rookie likens the cave to the one in "Raiders of the Lost Ark."
  • Rookie appeared on the Subscription Cover of Ghostbusters Annual 2017.
  • Rookie appears on the Subscription Cover of Ghostbusters 101 #3.
  • On the Subscription Cover of Ghostbusters 101 #5, the Rookie appears below Egon and Janine.
  • Rookie appears on Cover B of Ghostbusters 101 #6.
  • In Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles/Ghostbusters Volume 2 Issue #2 and Issue #3, the fourth Ghostbusturtle is their Rookie.[36]
  • Rookie appears on the 15th Crossing Over Virtual Trading Card, released on April 10, 2018, which featured the Chicago Ghostbusters.[37]
  • On May 31, 2018, Tom Waltz posted the 30th Crossing Over Virtual Trading Card, Rookie.[38]
  • On Cover A of Ghostbusters Crossing Over Issue #3, Rookie is piloting Kenner's Ecto Bomber.
  • Rookie appears on Cover B of Ghostbusters Crossing Over Issue #6.
  • A 6-inch action figure of the Rookie was released as part of the Matty Collector Ghostbusters 6 Inch Toy Line.

See Also


Primary Canon

Secondary Canon

IDW Comics


  1. Peter Venkman, Rookie (2009). Ghostbusters: The Video Game (Realistic Version)- Central Park Cemetery Level, During Game's End Credits "After confrontation with Ivo Shandor" (2009) (PC/PS3/Xbox 360). Atari.
  2. TomWaltz Tweet 5/31/18Virtual Trading Card reads: "Answering an ad placed by the GHOSTBUSTERS to be a participant in the active development of new proprietary technologies -- or, if you prefer, a guinea pig testing dangerous new ghostbusting equipment -- BRYAN WELSH (or, as everyone still calls him, ROOKIE) found himself using the most advanced proton pack ever made in an increasingly hostile paranormal event orchestrated by the empowered spirit of IVO SHANDOR."
  3. Dramatis Personae page (2014). IDW Comics- "Ghostbusters Volume 2 Issue #13" (2014) (Comic p.ii).
  4. Peter Venkman (2011). IDW Comics- "Ghostbusters Volume 1 Issue #4" (2011) (Comic p.5). Peter says: "I mean, even the Rookie, whatsisface, handled him."
  5. PCOC File (2011). IDW Comics- "Issue #4" (2011) (Comic p.22).
  6. TomWaltz Tweet 4/10/18
  7. Egon Spengler (2011).IDW Comics- "Issue #3" (2011) (Comic p.12). Egon says: "Not the experimental pack our former associate used."
  8. Tristan Jones IDW Forums post #1
  9. Tristan Jones IDW Forums post #2
  10. Rookie (2012). IDW Comics- "Ghostbusters Volume 1 Issue #13" (2012) (Comic p.4). Rookie says: "I'm not allowed to hire locally until there's a training program, which I'm not allowed to start. The guy who makes that call just does not like me for some reason."
  11. Rookie (2012). IDW Comics- "Ghostbusters Volume 1 Issue #13" (2012) (Comic p.3). Rookie says: "Do you know how hard it is to hire in this town when you can't technically get a union certification?"
  12. Rookie (2012). IDW Comics- "Ghostbusters Volume 1 Issue #13" (2012) (Comic p.4). Rookie says: "Eh, I got a couple'a temps outta Minnesota, for when something big comes up. And I hire some schmucks to sit around as bait every once in a while when I need that, so I make do."
  13. Rookie (2012). IDW Comics- "Ghostbusters Volume 1 Issue #13" (2012) (Comic p.3). Rookie says: "It's my good-luck charm. Well, that and it really helps deflect angrey clients. They always blame my "supervisor.""
  14. Janine Melnitz (2013). IDW Comics- "Ghostbusters Volume 2 Issue #4" (2013) (Comic p.8). Janine says: "I did. He was too busy - Chicago River turned to beer. Non-alcoholic beer. Ghost of a Prohibitionist."
  15. Special Agent Melanie Ortiz (2013). IDW Comics- "Ghostbusters Volume 2 Issue #11" (2013) (Comic p.5). Melanie says: "Y'know, there was a thing under the bed trying to take a little girl a few weeks ago and your guy in Chicago sent a report about a "Bogeyman" sighting at a school."
  16. "Ghostbusters: The Video Game, Ryan French Interview" (ts. 4:14-4:22) Ryan says: "And the Ghostbusters don't even want to know your name. Because of what happened to the last guy. They don't want to be attached to somebody that's going to disintegrate."
  17. Tristan Jones IDW Forums post #1
  18. Tristan Jones IDW Forums post #2
  19. Playstation Blog "Inside the Development of Ghostbusters: The Video Game" 10/2/19 John Melchior says: "The rookie (new recruit) was a massive fight internally at Vivendi and then even with Atari. They really wanted to "play as the cast." This was something I really fought for and eventually won. The reason why was simple. I felt people wanted the characters to have the same chemistry as they did in the films. A pillar of this was timing. So, by playing a character that had no lines, we were able to craft that timing."
  20. Game Informer "What You Didn't Know About Ghostbusters"
  21. skankerzero post #1 Ghostbusters Fans Forum "Terminal Reality (Ghostbusters TVG devs) has shut down" 12/20/13
  22. skankerzero post #2 Ghostbusters Fans Forum "Terminal Reality (Ghostbusters TVG devs) has shut down" 12/20/13
  23. Reddit AMA "AMA with the developers of 2009's Ghostbusters: The Video Game!" 7/16/16 John Melchior says: "For all the things mentioned below we chose Ryan, but there was another actor that was supposed to be that the end we couldn't make it work for political reasons..."
  24. "Ghostbusters: The Video Game, Ryan French Interview" (ts. 0:50-1:41) Ryan says: "They needed a ah average looking Joe Blow off the street to play the Rookie character and I successfully campaigned for the spot. They all laughed at the time. This was back a year and half ago. They said, "You know one point we're going to have to choose a new character for this Rookie guy." And I literally raised my hand and said, "I volunteer." And everybody laughed. "Oh French, you're so silly." And then fast forward a few months when they really need this character done, they come back and say "So French, were you serious about that?" "Hell yeah, I am." I'm a big fan like everybody else working on the project. We're all all big fans. I did what I could and it worked out."
  25. "Ghostbusters: The Video Game, Ryan French Interview" (ts. 1:49-1:54) Ryan says: "They needed an actual face to put on it and they didn't want to go with some big Hollywood person."
  26. "Ghostbusters: The Video Game, Ryan French Interview" (ts. 2:16-2:24) Ryan says: "I basically volunteered myself to lend my likeness for the Ghostbusters game. And Sony and Sierra ultimately agreed."
  27. Spook Central "Ghostbusters Fan Fest - Ghostbusters: The Video Game Panel" 38:40-38:50 10/4/19 Panelist says: "Then for a short period of time, it was going to be John Belushi. Because John Belushi was supposed to be in the original Ghostbusters movie. Passed away. So we thought -- we went to his estate. Have him be the playable character. But we thought it would be too much of a distraction."
  28. "Crossing the Streams Radio Show Episode 29" 53:33-56:25
  29. skankerzero post Ghostbusters Fans 7/7/13
  30. "Crossing the Streams Radio Show Episode 29" 53:33-56:25
  31. Brian Lynch Tweet #1 11/16/2021
  32. Brian Lynch Tweet #2 11/16/2021
  33. Peter Venkman (2013). IDW Comics- "Ghostbusters Volume 2 Issue #4" (2013) (Comic p.8). Peter says: "So how come you didn't call our little Junior Birdman out in Chicago?"
  34. Ghostbusters: The Board Game Update #34 3/5/15 "Looking for a good architect?"
  35. Ghostbusters: The Board Game Update #37 3/8/15 "It's not easy to become a Ghostbuster..."
  36. The Technodrome Forum Erik Burnham reply 11/9/17 Erik Burnham writes: "Dangit, I had fixed that line when I saw the art... guess it fell through the cracks! (I think I sent in the fix when Bobby was on vacation!) Whoops. Let's say that's the Turtle Rookie, then."
  37. TomWaltz Tweet 4/10/18
  38. TomWaltz Tweet 5/31/18
  39. Peter Venkman (2012). IDW Comics- "Ghostbusters Issue #9" (2012) (Comic p.28). Peter says: "Isn't this why we trained up that guy with the... I dunno, what's is face? With the eyebrows! And those other two!"



Primary Canon

Game Exclusives

Secondary Canon

Non Canon

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