We got a chance to sit down with Ubisoft at this year’s gamescom and were given 20-minutes of uninterrupted gameplay with South Park: The Fractured But Whole. Taking the role of the new kid once again, we stripped off our fantasy gear and dressed into something a little more ‘superhero’ and explored the recently delayed sequel to The Stick of Truth.
With that in mind, here’s five of the best things we learned about South Park: The Fractured But Whole
It's Still Rude & Crude
South Park: The Stick of Truth might have been the rudest and most offensive (in the best possible way) game of last generation. Nazis, abortion, anal probes; you name it, chances are, it was in there. Hell, in Europe and Australia, some scenes were even left out of the final game, leaving us with a face-palming Michaelangelo's David or a crying Koala instead. Fans of the previous game and South Park in general will be pleased to know that even in the brief 20-minute opening of the game, The Fractured But Whole retains the crude humour of the show. From the more tame toilet humour, where having a poo is now a mini-game, to once again watching your parents have sex, or the certificate 18 language used by the boys; it’s all back.
It Sounds Just Like the Show
And speaking of the dialogue, once again it’s perfect with all the shows cast reprising their roles. Of course, on more than a handful of occasions that means that show creators Matt Stone and Trey Parker have stepped up to the mic, proving that they are 100% invested in the game’s creation. Cartman remains the whiny ‘his way or no way’ only child demeanour, Butters is the stuttering worrier and Stan the voice of reason. If The Stick of Truth is anything to go by, then you can also expect cameos of fan favourites such as Big Gay Al, Randy and even Al Gore. Twinned with the now iconic guitar string score, you’ll be able to fool yourself into thinking that you’re just watching another episode.
Superheroes Are More Diverse Than Wizards and Elves
Despite the different classes in The Stick of Truth, no matter what you played as they all felt pretty similar; changes only really surfacing when you switched your items and armour. In South Park: The Fractured But Whole, your class decision is much more important, determining your style of play and your series of attacks. Ultimately, it’s a decision that means you either get up in the faces of your opponents or stand back and absorb attacks. Though only ‘speedster’ was available in the 20-minutes we had, Ubisoft tell us that there will be at least 12 classes, all with subclasses that you can refine, in the final version. So, if you see yourself as more of a Hulk, a Batman or a Doctor Strange, chances are there’ll be a class for you.
Fighting is More Complex
And it’s the above classes that help evolve the turn-based combat. Rather than simple 3v3 battles in the original, where you would target enemies to attack, South Park: The Fractured But Whole puts you on a grid, reminiscent of old school board games. Now, instead of being stationary, you are given a grid to move around in order to get the upper hand on your foes. This also introduces things such as barriers that enemies can hide behind making combat more like a game of chess and changes your tactical approach. For example, the battle in the demo involved fighting against a heavy and a medic, so the advice given was to sneak behind the heavy to avoid his attack and focus on taking out the health replenisher. It’s a big step from the combat of the original, but with gentle encouragement, players should be able to get the gist of the new system.
Farts will always be funny. When you were a child they were funny, when you hear them today, they’re funny. Luckily South Park: The Fractured But Whole has put even more focus on those hilarious trouser trumpets. The new kid’s farting super power is now even more lethal, allowing you to rip through time and space to attack foes and even scale buildings in the appropriately named ‘fartcour’ in order to reach hidden items and secrets. You can see ‘fartcour’ as South Park: The Fractured But Whole equivalent of the anal probe teleportation in the original. Pure anal humour!