Review: South Park: The Stick of Truth (PS3)
South Park: The Stick of Truth is kind of a make or break title as far as South Park games go. Can anyone remember Chef’s Luv Shack or South Park Rally? If not you’ll probably want to avoid looking them up, unless you want your admiration for the South Park franchise to sink faster than Mr. Hankey in a public bathroom (Ed: Ouch!). Love it or hate it, there is no doubt that South Park has made its mark on modern society, but what kind of impact does The Stick of Truth make on the ever brutal and demanding fan base of the gaming industry? Let’s take a little look, m’kay?
In The Stick of Truth you start off as a ‘new kid’ in South Park. You have no friends and your parents force you to go out and meet some buddies. As with most RPG’s you customize your character, join a clan and stat up accordingly. Since the game has a high focus on the storyline I’m avoiding going into too much detail, but mentioning a Cartman Grand Wizard and Elf King Kyle is standard practice in the South Park realm. This quickly escalates from children’s ‘innocent’ backyard antics to the below-the-belt, over-the-top, offensive shenanigans we’ve all come to expect from South Park over the years.
The actual RPG elements are very watered down and at times a little too simplistic for veterans of the genre. One might argue that Obsidian Entertainment were tasked with making the game accessible to not only gamers but anyone who happens to be a fan of South Park . For the latter, this is a “Mission Accomplished” and accomplished well. The main story of the game has been written in typical South Park fashion and the side quests will remind fans of some of their favourite past episodes. Revisiting some of the older characters in this new format is a pleasure and serves as a reminder to just why the show has become one of the most popular programs on TV today.
The actual combat mechanic is that of a basic turn-based RPG title. While the combat is simplistic there is something special about the oddly combined items, attacks and power-ups. You’ll find yourself casting spells, eating Mexican food and having homosexual sex slaves jumping on the heads of your opponents (Ed: Say what?!). While all this is happening your task remains simple; keep you and your team alive for long enough to beat the hell out of your opposition and move onto the next task. As you progress so will your teams special ability attacks. These attacks are crucial in progressing through the story and aren’t necessarily used in battle. Get ready for some boob flashing (Don’t get too excited), pants soiling and plenty, PLENTY inappropriate wind passing.
There is no doubt that The Stick of Truth is primarily fan service to South Park and this is the game’s greatest pro rather than con. Fans of the series essentially get to live an episode of South Park. Which fan wouldn’t want that. The typical story, basic visuals and vulgar humour are all there along with plenty of additional content and a host of Chinpokomon will have South Parks fans entertained for quite some time. All in all South Park: The Stick of Truth is suuuuper, thanks for aaasking.