I have been hooked to South Park since episode one where Cartman farts out an alien anal probe. There have been a couple of more or less inspired videogames based on the highly successful satirical cartoon. When I saw that the new iPhone game was a combination of South Park and I Survived A Japanese Game show I just had to get it. I thought that such a combination would be superb, and I conjured up dozens of minigames featuring the four lads: Cartman, Kyle, Stan and Kenny.
Sadly South Park Mega Millionaire is basically just one such minigame where you jump around on skates collecting money while avoiding obstacles. Sure the objectives vary somewhat with you having to serve tea to masters, balance a bonsai tree on your head and safely guide a turtle home. All of these are carried out on skates in a 2-d platforming fashion.
You can choose to control either by means of touch or tilt. The touch controls are really off, as there seems to be lacking multitouch. You control speed left or right by touching the sides of the screen, and jump by touching somewhere on the top half of the screen. The game doesn’t register this too well, and you either jump or you control speed. Unforgivable in a platformer relying on tight controls. The tilt controls work a bit better as they let you control movement, and touch to jump at the same time. Still a bit imprecise, and getting the character to stand still can be a real pain in the alien probe.
The strong point to the game is the visuals that are bright, and filled with South Park charm. Where the graphics shine the audio fails miserably as there is just the odd voice acting from the show available when you fall off a platform. I think it is really strange not having voices in the game for the main characters or the Japanese game show host. To me this makes the entire game feel generic, and quite frankly it is a bad generic game.
The level designs are really boring with you skating a set path from a to b. There aren’t any slopes or loops, just plain old platforms. Between stages you get to watch your character move forward on the game board. You can’t choose anything as the game is totally linear, and lacks all incentive to replay once you beaten it. Okay, you choose when to stop the spinning wheel of misfortune but still that is just chance.
I am really disappointed with South Park Mega Millionaire as it is a real waste of a great license. Nothing is over the top, nothing is new or unexpected and the actual game is a tedious battle with the controls.
Presentation & Graphics
South Park Mega Millionaire looks great, with a high level of polish. Still nothing really spectacular happens, and many times it feels like you could put any character in there instead of the South Park cast.
The fast paced techno music is ok but a bit low in the mix. Not having the cast giving voice to the game is just a crazy decision. It states on the App Store page that you get hilarious sound effects from the show in the game, where?
You can play your own music from within the game.
These controls are almost broken, and forget trying to play using the touch controls. The tilt controls work but not good enough to make it enjoyable.
Linear, and the new objectives added feels plastered on. Like, how can we make the same boring level play differently again? Hey, lets add a teapot to his head.
The 24 challenges available are more or less the same, and I don’t think I ever want to replay this game. You can take turns playing as well but hey why torture a friend with these piss poor controls. Achievements, statistics and local high scores for anyone with too much time on their hands.
South Park Mega Millionaire is not a good game, it really isn’t even though it looks stunning in the screenshots. There are so many directions the developer could have taken it, and it really confuses me how they could have gone this direction. As a free game it might be cool for an hour or two, but charging five bucks for this is just nasty.