When it comes to nailing comedy, video games have for the most part failed spectacularly at drawing out genuine chuckles from their audiences. Comedy isn’t exactly easy to nail, especially in video game environment that has far more fluid parameters to creating the setup for a joke. South Park: The Stick of Truth may have been the exception to the rule however.
Sure, there was plenty of cheap toilet humour present, but also some especially sharp commentary on the state of video games and the cheap tricks used to keep players locked next to their consoles (These audio logs! They’re just filler! They’re just f***ing filler!). That’s thanks to South Park co-creators Matt Stone and Trey Parker not only lending their brand of humour to the first game, but also being avid gamers themselves.
They’re also back for South Park: The Fractured But Whole which focuses not on fantasy and epic sagas, but the recent explosion of superhero movies and Cartman’s obsession to make several billion dollars at the box office. So imagine the kind of comedy that a sequel centered on Coon and friends is going to produce with Stone and Parker ripping a new hole in spandex shenanigans.
“They’re really, really involved,” Senior Producer Jason Schroeder said to the PS Blog.
We have daily calls and I’m down there a few times a month just constantly trying to make sure that they’re getting the comedy they want into the game and making sure that it all makes sense moment to moment. They’re both gamers, so there’s a really easy common language. However, deadlines and pressure are actually some of the best ways they get their comedy.
Separate from the game, they truly make each episode of South Park in just six days. It’s from that pressure that they get their really relevant, really timely jokes. The video game cycle, by comparison, is brutally long for them.
The comedy between video games and TV are two distinct entities, but there are similarities present as Schroeder explained. Ideas which make South Park: The Fractured But Whole very dedicated to its source material. “My aspiration is to make sure every South Park fan gets an unedited Matt Stone and Trey Parker experience,” Schroeder said.
We always want to try and make sure to get every joke in that we can. Sometimes we have to ask the guys ‘okay, do you want that to be a gag or do you want it to be a whole system? Should we build this in as dynamic part of the game or do want it to just be something that happens?’ Sometimes people will have fun with a joke for five minutes but if you try to build a whole level around it they might feel like ‘okay, I got the joke the first time and it was funny but I’ve been doing it for an hour now.
Here’s my question: Will South Park: The Fractured But Whole manage to top the first game which included a scene where you fought Nazi aborted baby zombies with something even more controversial? Schroeder had an answer for that:
There’s hopefully going to be some stuff in there that people will say ‘how did that make it through classification?’
South Park: The Fractured But Whole is out this December, and yes Kenny probably will die a horrible death again. You bastards.
Last Updated: July 5, 2016