Rude, twisted, occasionally disturbing and often hilarious, South Park deserves its legions of fans.
But even the most hardcore of those would wince at the idea of yet another South Park game. Thankfully, though, South Park - The Stick Of Truth, blasts all worries
away, and delivers humour and fantastically authentic game play, in equal amounts.
The game looks and feels identical to the television show. If the two dimensional and simply drawn environments were not enough, how about an original script and voice acting from creators Matt Stone and Trey Parker?
Unlike previous shambolic cartoon to video game installments, the creative duo has had their say on every element of the game, ranging from the outrageously funny cutscenes, to side-splittingly vulgar turn-based combat.
The game follows you, the new kid on the block, as you interact with the characters of South Park, completing various hilarious quests that tie in with all the characters over the past series.
In a nod to games like Skyrim and Final Fantasy, South Park is a free roaming RPG, with turn-based combat. Players initially choose a class, such as warrior or thief, then go on to upgrade their characters appearance, weapons and skills as the game progresses.
This large element of customisation gives this game the depth that is truly lacking in most cartoon to video game offerings, enabling the player to attach far more with their character. Furthermore, it suggests that this is going to be a long game, rather than the poor quality 'pop corn' game we have come to expect from other tie-ins.
South Park - The Stick Of Truth is shaping up to be one of the most unique games of the year, and will set the standard for other TV to game transitions in the future.
With people being more cautious than ever with their money, there is no time for awful excuses for games, such as the diabolical Battleship. Whilst South Park - The Stick Of Truth may not stand up to powerhouses like Call of Duty Black Ops 2, there is a real sense that this is for the fans.
Admirably, the developers have not succumb to the graphical pressures of current gen, meaning you will not be seeing any amazing textures, immensely dynamic lighting or hyper-realistic motion capturing. Artistic integrity is plain for all to see; a refreshing change.
What is yet to be discovered is if this game will have any lasting power. Yes, this game will serve as a real end to poor cartoon to video game tie-ins, but will it run the risk of becoming stale? I can only imagine that the joke that made me cry with laughter in the first play-through, does not quite hit the same mark the second time around.
I do not need to worry about this, and neither do fans. This game will be an experience like no other, a real treat for the die-hard fans that go out of their way to justify South Park's brilliance to anyone who will listen.
With all the catastrophic attempts at bridging the gap between TV and game, who would of thought the white knight would be South Park...
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