Surprisingly it was at Comic-Con that I was able to see the first gameplay footage of South Park: The Stick of Truth. Unfortunately due to Ubisoft’s policy no photographs or video footage was allowed, but that didn’t stop me from memorizing at much information as possible. You can rest easy knowing that the game looks fantastic and the artstyle, as well as the humor we know and love, is similar to the television show.
In the demo we are placed in control of The New Kid as he and Cartman’s followers attempt to question a bard from a local bar. When entering Cartman directly ask for the Bard’s location after asking for a drink, spurring the residents inside, and told to go to the basement for an audience. The cutscence ends and I was treated to the first footage of actual gameplay.
South Park: The Stick of Truth is an interactive RPG where the player can use various abilites to solve puzzles around the environment. In this instant it’s the ability to fart and use that methane gas to ignite flames around you. When getting to the end of basement a battle between Jimmy the Bard and his fellow Elfs ensues. The battle system plays similar to the Mario and Luigi RPG series where the player inputs commands and can avoid attacks with proper timing. As Jimmy plays in the background, using his signature stutter and adult human, his allies gain a temporary attack boost. But unfortunately they were no match for The New Kid’s physical attacks and Butters the Paladin. Commands are inputed using a command wheel that you cycle through, with some attacks requiring a specific amount of mana to use.
After the battle Jimmy escaped and warned the others to hold them off while he went to protect the Stick of Truth. It was here that I witnessed how the player could use the environment to defeat targets without engaging in battle and preemptive attacks. Using his environment fart ability The New Kid was able to ignite a flame lamp that Craig knocked over and engage in another fight by striking the enemy before the battle started. Within this fight I saw attacks that can cause bleeding effects and other stat altercating problems and benefits. The snippy humor that the series was known for continued throughout the battle, making references from pasted episodes such as Butter saying “I guess I found a new Bottom Bitch.”.
Upstairs The New Kid and Butter’s witnessed Cartman getting viciously pummeled by three Elfs. Butters and The New Kid easily defeated the Elfs before getting new orders from Cartman. Cartman guzzles a package of Ketchup in an attempt to make the bleeding seem real tells both Butters and The New Kid to rescue Princess Kenny before he is raped by the Elfs. The demo ended on that high note and a trailer finalized the presentation.
It’s a relief to see how fantastic this game looks. The graphical look, writing, and gameplay work together to create a rich RPG game within the South Park universe. As a fan I was able to make several connections based on the dialogue and the fighting mechanics had me lamenting on the Mario and Luigi RPG series. Afterwards I immediately reserved the game and was given a tiny statue featuring The Grand Wizard himself. South Park: The Stick of Truth is slated for December 10, 2013 for Xbox 360, PS3, and PC.