Where has this been all my life? Oh it has been a while since South Park: The Stick of Truth came out and just now have I finally been able to play the thing and good lord in heaven this is an absolute marvel to behold. Everything that I love in a game is here wrapped in a nice little nostalgic bow from the television show that I enjoyed so much as a teenagers forcing my way through high school. South Park is one of those shows I feel like everyone gets involved in at some point in their life. They watch a season or two religiously and then go on in life either taking one of two routes, looking back on South Park as a classic television show that tackles heavy issues in today’s society with a ‘nothing is sacred’ mentality or they look back on it saying South Park is a big pile of crap masked by its smug sense of irreverence played off as intelligent political satire. I feel smarter for saying that sentence.
Either rate, I am one of the ones who looks upon South Park with relatively kind eyes. I do think the show after several years seemed to get off on the idea that they were edgy in their political ideals. But overall I firmly enjoyed the show and still find it to be one of the best television series of the past two decades. With its brilliant cross over into the realms of video gaming, South Park has endeared me to the franchise once again.
As the new kid in South Park, you are quickly whisked into a world of utter peril and grand adventure as the children of South Park have started playing a game of Dungeons and Dragons like proportions; One side are the humans led by Cartman while the other side is the elves lead by Kyle. Now christened ‘Douchebag’ you embark on an epic quest between the forces of good and evil. All the while facing some of South Park Colorado’s most memorable foes such as the space aliens from the pilot, the underpants gnomes, and much much more.
It may be a little generic on the RPG elements… But man does this game feel like one of the best, most well polished RPGs that I have played in quite some time. The leveling up, the weapons customization, and the squad tactics make for a phenomenally done RPG. Not only that, but Parker and Stone showed their love for the franchise in giving throwbacks to classic RPGs. Making Canada into an old RPG setting that you would see in the likes of Ultima and the original Final Fantasy as well as including similar battle mechanics makes for an excellent homage to the franchise.
It also adds in a lot of excellent comedy when it comes to the fact that you play as a silent protagonist and the game constantly makes fun of the fact that you never say a word. This element shows that the creators truly did have an admiration and a respect to the craft, giving it that extra push to success.
The Jabs at the Stale and clichéd Video Games of Today
Anyone else tired of Nazi Zombies? How about secret government agencies meant to cover up things and we as the plucky protagonists have to stop them because governments shouldn’t keep secrets? Yeah I am too and these are the things that have a tight vice grip on the balls of Triple A video gaming. I absolutely love the fact that this game takes them and pokes fun at them. The idea that this game has Nazi zombies and using them in a way that is hilarious while at the same time pointing out how overused and clichéd they are makes me giddy with joy, especially since it is using that classic South Park style.
One of the best parts in the game is when the supposed eye patch wearing villain begins to spout his overused ‘government cover up’ horse shit and the boys have my exact sentiments every time someone does this in a video game. PLEASE shut the fuck up and is there a way to cut to the next scene, which just so happens to be unskippable unlike other parts of the game.
South Park made a leap into the video game medium and brought its classic style of satire to poke fun of the cliches that riddle the medium and I for one absolutely love it.
If you are a fan of the television show then get ready because you are in for a treat. You see some of your favorite characters that you have missed from the show such as crab people, Mr. Hat, The Goth Kids, and even some of the favorite places that you see in the show. Tom Cruise is still locked in Stan’s closet, you run into Al Gore, and even get to see the return of a zombified and poorly dubbed Chef.
The inside jokes and throwbacks to classic characters and episodes makes this a must play and a must own for anyone who is a fan of the television show. There is just too much content in here for a hardcore fan to turn their back on.
It Feels Like You are in South Park
More than any other television tie in I have seen did you feel like you are inside of the South Park Universe. As I was playing, I felt like I was watching an extended episode of South Park and not only that you are watching an episode. But that you are apart of it. That you are a living, breathing extension of the South Park Universe. This fact makes it possible for anyone who has ever wondered what it would be like to be apart of a South Park episode or universe that sensation. I loved every second of it and it made me want to revisit some of my favorite episodes.
This game is phenomenal and a Game of the Year candidate in my opinion. The graphics look like South Park, the game feels like South Park, and in the very few areas that it is slightly lacking, it makes up for with excellent content and a lot of fun to be had.
This is the type of game that I have been missing from the 2014 line up of ‘I’ve seen it’ and ‘mediocre’ crap that has been released and I hope that people take a look at what a couple of guys from television can do for the medium and hope that a follow-up and DLC comes out soon.
Final Score 5/5
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