South Park: The Stick of Truth Preview
It’s long past time for “South Park” to have a definitive video game. We’ve been waiting patiently for South Park: The Stick of Truth, which has earned new life after Ubisoft purchased the dying THQ Montreal studio. The new publisher confirmed that Obsidian Entertainment’s latest will drop this holiday season, when it will be available for the PlayStation 3, Xbox 360 and PC. If you’re an avid fan of the iconic TV show, you’re probably anxious to learn more about the action/RPG that will undoubtedly deliver lots of laughs.
Players assume the role of “The New Kid” (aka Douchebag), an agent of destruction sent by Imperial Wizard Eric Cartman. You must infiltrate the fortified base of the elves and locate the legendary Stick of Truth before the guardians (Stan and Kyle) can stop them. The New Kid’s special ability is that he farts. That’s right, he farts long and loud and can fry his enemies to a crisp with a tremendous gaseous blast. He and his wingman, Butters, carve their way through hordes of fantastical baddies; The New Kid attacks with farted fireballs and even his own turds collected from the urinal. Burritos act as mana, if you’re wondering, and the rest is appropriately…foul.
However, there is a wee bit of thinking going on in this game. For instance, a fan can neutralize The New Kid’s smelly assault, and an Alien Anal Probe lets insidious Underwear Gnomes wreak all sorts of havoc south of the border. See, it’s still sick, but there’s a sick kind of strategy involved. The New Kid can make friends to increase his overall potency, for instance, and he’s the only one who can unite the warring school clans. Now, as you might expect, Cartman and The New Kid eventually part ways because as it turns out, one is a traitor. Cartman is none too happy about it and they end up throwing down in a battle to determine gassy superiority.
Eventually, we learn that Clyde has already nabbed the Stick of Truth, and he’s using a barrel of toxic waste to reanimate dead cats. Then he gives them Nazi armbands and sends them off to prowl the night, so that’s another enemy to worry about. The gameplay will feature a mix of platforming, puzzle, action and role-playing elements, and provided the control is spot-on, we should get a worthwhile result. Spellcasters will have to rely on the timing of their button-presses, which sounds interesting. It will also be gross to see The New Kid fart on his hand and fling the odor at someone.
The latter ability is called “Cup-A-Spell,” by the way. There will be all sorts of fun skills and items to take advantage of, such as the Lightning Volt. This is when you dump a bucket of water on an enemy, then drop a car battery with exposed wires into the puddle at the hapless foe’s feet. Then there’s the Funnel of Frost (a fire extinguisher) and the Hammer of Justice (yeah, just your basic hammer). If everything goes smoothly, you should be laughing your ass off at South Park: The Stick of Truth some time later this year. Crudeness will reign, as it always does in "South Park."
6/11/2013 Ben Dutka