Date Posted: 12/01/20
Goat Simulator is a third-person perspective game in which you, the player, take control of a goat. You can jump, head-butt things, lick and run. It was originally released in 2014 before getting a PS3 and PS4 port in August 2015. It is (or was) one of the free games given to Playstation Plus members in January 2020.
I am currently still psyching myself up for my attempt at Dark Souls, I am pretty sure that I am going to play as a Warrior, but as I have been kept busy with other matters recently I have not had time to actually begin the game. I don’t know exactly what I am getting myself in for, and may do, not a review exactly, but more like a diary-type thing in which I describe my experience as I try to get through it.
So, I wondered what I could talk about this week, Abbie suggested Toy Story 4 but as I have not reviewed the others and have what you humans might call a touch of Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, I couldn’t review the forth film without first having done the other three. I am still playing GTA Online which has basically become my comfort game, I dip into it for an hour or so when I want to listen to a video on YouTube or something, but as I drew a line under doing articles for that, I couldn’t talk about things I have done since my final update.
The only other thing that I could think to talk about was a game that Abbie suggested we play because it has a split screen mode, namely Goat Simulator...
Now in case you don’t know, the plot of the game is as follows...you play as an indestructible goat that can run around a suburban environment, can head butt vehicles with a force that will make them explode, jump over obstacles and your tongue is mega-sticky that enables you to attach it to objects and either pull them along or you will be pulled by whatever you’re attached to. Oh yes, you can also Baa. I am aware that I have basically just described what you can do rather than what you are supposed to be working towards and that is because as far as I can tell, there is nothing you are ultimately working towards...
When Abbie and I loaded into the game we were set lose in a small sandbox map in which we could run, head butt and so on, which is what we did for a while. Both of us chuckling away and comparing what we were doing as we smashed cars making them explode, or charged into people sending them hurtling across the map.
We were able to get inside buildings and just wreak the place up, the physics engine making anything we touch ragdoll, and even caused our respective goats to get stuck in various walls as we were knocked by other goats or certain vehicles.
It was initially fun but it quickly started reminding me of when we started playing Lego Worlds, because then like now, there was really nothing to do. We didn’t seem to have mission objectives, or targets to achieve. There were many other locations that we could travel to whenever we chose but no need to go anywhere. In this game at one point I stumbled across a small goat-statue which was apparently one of thirty. One of thirty in the game? Or one of thirty in that location? It turned out to be one of thirty in that specific map, which was the only objective or purpose to the game that we found
Lego Worlds gave us the freedom to go anywhere but also gave us no reason to travel to other places. As a result it did not take long to get bored with the game, and abandon it.
I’m not saying that we need to have our hands being held or guided around by the nose. After all we wiled away many hours in Minecraft because we set ourselves tasks, almost unconsciously, as we built a place to keep us safe from the suicide shrubs, spiders, skeletons and other monsters lurking in the world. Later we (or I) built a mountaintop fortress whilst Abbie burrowed into the ground searching for minerals. Eventually I created a bridge from our first home, which basically became an enclosed farm, to the mountain top...thing is after that was done the only thing left to do was move somewhere else and build something else, which neither of us could be bothered to do. As a result at that point we decided to abandon Minecraft. My point is that we don’t necessarily need specific instructions as a big sandbox with building mechanics, different challenges and players will make their own entertainment.
With Goat Simulator there just wasn’t really anything to do in it. As a result Abbie and I were quickly getting bored. A game where you make your own fun is one thing but a game that gives you a sandbox and nothing to do in that sandbox is just dull and tedious. There is a limit to how many times you can watch a goat rag-dolling across the map and still find it amusing.
Plus the game is very glitchy, your goat’s ragdoll will get stuck in various objects, and at one point I had to respawn because I couldn’t get my goat’s top half out of a building after it was catapulted into the sky then landed but somehow glitched into the roof.
It you go near anything you goat’s head will twist and contort at bizarre angles but nothing in the game can kill your goat, so there is no threat, and just like in Lego Worlds no threats equals a boring sandbox.
Truthfully I don’t really know what I expected from a game called Goat Simulator but I was expecting some purpose to playing it. There were race challenges but neither of us could be bothered to actually compete in them because races are the pits in terms of activities to do in a game. If you can’t think of anything then do a race challenge. I have done race challenges in so many different games and whilst they are dressed up slightly differently they always amount to the same thing. Freedom in a sandbox then rigid path to follow when doing a race that will cause you to lose if you veer away from the course for a moment.
Essentially there was very little to no gameplay in this game. Yes it was initially fun but it was a fleeting kind of amusement, within half an hour our laughs had faded but we were still smiling, then before we hit the hour mark I was bored and did not want to continue playing.
Personally I did not see the purpose of Goat Simulator as aside from race challenges there was nothing to do. Yes, I get the joke that you are playing as an indestructible goat but with no objectives, no enemies, and no real game play I cannot really recommend this game. It may be (or have been) free for those with a membership to Playstation Plus in January 2020 but it is not worth the 3 odd Gigs of space it needs to download.
Goat Simulator gets a Thumbs Down, maybe my mighty alien intellect isn’t capable of getting what the game was supposed to be about, or the purpose of its existence. If it is a game for humans who think it is clever or has a deeper meaning to it, then they can have it, personally I am going to have a crack at Dark Souls...eventually.
3/10 – Initially Abbie and I were having fun, but the game got very old, very fast. Ultimately it was boring, and the moment we quit I have deleted it from my console because it is not something that we will be going back to...ever.