South Park: The Fractured But Whole – Review

Image via ubisoft.com

Of course I want more South Park.

Picking up where The Stick of Truth left off we find the lads of South Park still adventuring. This time they are playing super heroes and they must find the source of evil that is causing crime in their beloved town.

The Stick of Truth was a huge homage to the South Park universe and The Fractured But Whole is no different. Even though I haven’t seen much of the show over the last few years there are still familiar call-outs and references. There is a strong chance that I missed some of the humor since I haven’t watched the show in some time. That didn’t diminish my enjoyment of this game in any way.

From technical stand point the game is good but problematic. The graphics look just like the show and probably could easily be mistaken for an episode at any given point. Any sight or sound could have been straight out of the show. Problems with battles and actions popped up throughout the game however. At one point in the game I was trying to do an encounter versus a group of sixth graders but as soon as one of them went into a micro-aggression the battle broke. I would interrupt the micro-aggression so that I could get some free damage but after doing so the battle just stopped. Literally just stopped. I could take no turns with any of my characters nor would any of the sixth graders attack me. After quitting and reloading a save twice with the same results my only resolution was to go do something else then come back to this particular encounter. Later in the game when you have to use Fartkour, basically a jumping maneuver, it would not work at all. No matter when I pressed the button I was prompted for the event would fail and I would die. This then had to reload the game only to have it not work again. My fix for this was to quit the game, actually close it on my PS4, and reload it completely. First time it loaded back in I successfully completed the sequence.

The combat in the game is similar to the original game but slightly reworked. The turn based mechanic returns as well as a mix of near and ranged attacks to be used. The first change a player will notice is the introduction of lanes. You can move your character, within a certain amount of space, to direct your attacks or to avoid incoming attacks. This can also help you maximize the effectiveness of your team but you’ll need to be mindful of the capabilities of your chosen teammates. The other big change is the addition of artifacts, changeable items that add to your overall fighting power. You can craft of find these but be sure to keep your best equipped so that you are keeping up with the level of enemies you will be facing.

There are things, like crafting, that were added into the game that I’m not sure they were a good addition. It adds a level of complexity and management that is likely welcome to those that are familiar with these systems in other games but for players like myself it feels like a layer of confusing busy work that keeps me from enjoying the game more. This may just be a matter of personal preference.

As much as I enjoyed going down to South Park to have myself a time, again, I’m good with where this game left off. The predictability of the plot didn’t diminish my enjoyment of the game but at the end of it I just didn’t want any more of it.  Everything I got from my one play through was all I felt I needed. Most likely I will not be picking up any of the DLC for the game unless there is some reveal that shows a major reason to do so.

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Paul Novak

Owner, Proprietor, Typer of Words, Gamer, Jester

A self described Polish ninja toiling away as an IT professional but more into gaming and writing. Physically existing on the western side of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania yet existentially flowing with the ether of the Internet.

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