Goat Simulator raises many questions; however, after playing it I’ve come to realise that this isn’t a game that can be understood through questioning. If you’ve seen it and thought “what is this game?”, then you’ve probably asked too many questions already. Goat Simulator requires you to forget everything you ever knew of games, physics (and the biology of goats), and just roll with its sheer insanity on perhaps one of the most entertaining rides that gaming has ever produced.
This isn’t a game to be taken seriously, as everything about it reflects on a design team just having a laugh. That said, this isn’t just another ironic “simulator game”, on the same model as Farming Simulator or Train Simulator; there is, surprisingly, an actual game in there, and even more surprisingly it’s a rather good game (it runs on Unreal Engine for goodness sake!).
The premise is simple: you are a goat (no surprises there). However you are no ordinary goat, as you are blessed with superhuman (or should that be supergoat?) strength and speed, as well as the power to head-butt pretty much anything into utter oblivion and attach any movable item to yourself by licking it. With these great powers it is your great responsibility to run around a small suburban landscape and cause as much mayhem and destruction as possible, and in all honesty this is one of the most hilariously enjoyable destruction simulators out there. Your slightest touch can unleash spectacular annihilation, and the ragdoll physics are a true joy to behold. Coupled with some brilliant sound effects, it is, in many ways, a player created set piece bonanza (even if it does tend to lag a bit on the larger explosions).
Yet Goat Simulator isn’t just about wanton destruction, as there are many complex jumping puzzles with some worthwhile rewards. These, combined with an effective physics engine, make for a genuinely enjoyable gaming experience. On top of this the numerous achievements and secret areas to explore, as well as the different game modes that often revolve around giving your goat different hilarious superpowers, make Goat Simulator a game you’ll find yourself coming back to more often than anticipated.
This game is without doubt meant to be a laugh, and while that’s definitely no bad thing, Goat Simulator does lack the polish of a slightly more serious game. Whilst the developers do have a point that any glitch that doesn’t cause a ‘Crash To Desktop’ is probably hilarious, the amount of glitches (especially those where your goat gets stuck through walls) do get rather tiring, and while the graphics are good the game often lags something terrible.
More importantly, no matter how many explosions you set off and how many secret achievements there are, it eventually runs out of puff, and you will find yourself asking questions of the £6.99 price tag. Until that moment, however, there is little doubt that this game will provide a lot of entertainment. Personally, I feel that the price is a worthy donation to the brilliant and totally insane minds at Coffee Stain Studios.
All in all, this is certainly a game worth checking out if you are in the mood to be entertained. Or have a thing for goats and/or wanton destruction.
Alexander Robertsbookmark me