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South Park the Stick of Truth

 

Part One

South Park’s game history isn’t the greatest, the games range from absolutely terrible to aggressively mediocre. So what’s so different about South Park the Stick of Truth? Well for starters it is the first game that looks like it could be an episode of the show, a 12 hour episode. If you’re a fan of South Park there is no reason to not get Stick of Truth straight away, where as people new to the series should become fans and play this as soon as possible. The game starts some time after the 3 part episode about the next gen consoles in season 17 of the TV show.

All the kids of South park, Colorado are role-playing as either wizards run by Cartman and Kenny or elves run by Kyle and Stan who are the man characters of the show. You are the new kid in town who recently moved in, as you try to make some friends you quickly meet Butters who takes you to Cartman and lets you play in the game from there you choose one of 4 classes to play, a fighter, mage, a thief or a jew. Yes that’s one of the tamer jokes in this game, it only goes down hill from here. After a short intro to the battle system, the Stick of Truth which lets a wielder control all of the universe is stolen by elves and Cartman sends you to get it back.

The over world of Stick of Truth is actually the town of South Park with all the memorable landmarks a fan would remember such as the school, South Park pond and Canada.
The combat itself is turn based, however you can block attacks to mitigate the damage kinda reminiscent of the Paper Mario games or other active turn based systems, during your turn there are a couple of different options to choose, you can do a normal attack, use a healing item or if you have another member of South Park as a party member you can use their special ability, you can also use PP or Power Points to use a special attack or use mana to use a magical attack, you’re allowed to use a healing item and attack in the same turn which makes t0he battles pretty easy, even boss battles on the normal difficulty at least.

This didn’t really bother me though as, as good as the combat was, I was mainly in it for the story and seeing what happens next. There is also a bunch of status effects and powering positions which makes the combat surprisingly deep, if not difficult.
Out of combat you can use the menu features to see a lot of what’s happening around town from checking your social media to upgrading your abilities, looking at your quest and equipping you character with weapons and clothes. There’s a large variety of weapons and clothes to collect either by finding them in random backpacks left around, defeating enemies or buying them. You can equip a melee weapon such as anything ranging from police baton to an electrified dildo, a ranged weapon such as basketballs and alien ray guns, and also different helmets, costumes and gloves all with there own stat boosts and effects, you can also socket certain equipment to give you even more boosts.

If you’re anything like me you’ll be swapping equipment in and out regularly as you find better loot. If you followed the development of the game at all, you’d know it hit a lot of hurdles in the time before its release, after copious delays it was actually refused calcification in Australia and other countries. Certain scenes have been removed from the Australian version and replaced with an image of a crying koala, but I really didn’t find this a problem. Sure it would have been nice to actually see all the content in this game, but it only happens about 5 times throughout the whole game, 3 of which take place in the same 10 minutes, but it still explains to you what’s happening so you don’t really miss out on much and most of the time they end up being funnier than what actually happened.
Being such a fan of the TV show it was hard for me to not like South Park the Stick of Truth, for all the references to the both the show itself and gaming in general, sure the humour is crude but it fits perfectly within the universe of South Park. If you like this kind of humour and haven’t seen the show, do yourself a favour and watch it then play this game.

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