When South Park Got an EA Sports Game Pulled off the Shelves

Long before golfer Tiger Woods thought it'd be a good idea to go sticking his dick in anything with a hole and a pulse, his video game franchise was embroiled in a scandal of a different kind.

The harmless kind. Involving Jesus, Santa Claus and a cartoon.

In 1998, a young Tiger Woods was bursting onto the world sporting scene, and to cash in EA Sports released the very first game in the Tiger Woods PGA Tour series, which is still running today.

To be released on the PC and PlayStation, it was hoped the game would reinvigorate a sports genre that had lain dormant since the early 1990s, Wood's fresh face and a new take on golf gaming helping to make Tiger Woods PGA Tour 99 stand out from the crowd.

Yet only a few months after the game's release, in January 1999, the PlayStation version of the game was pulled off store shelves as part of a mass recall. Not the most auspicious start to what was hoped to be a blockbuster franchise for both the golfer and EA Sports.

Why was it yanked? Because somebody at EA Sports thought it would be funny to slip an episode of South Park onto the game disc. And not just any episode; the crude, uncensored South Park "pilot" commonly known as Jesus vs. Santa (which you can see here, though know it's NSFW).

While the episode wasn't viewable from the game itself, or in a PlayStation, if you put the game disc into a PC and opened the file Zzdummy.dat you'd be able to view the short.

Calling the episode "objectionable to consumers", EA ended up recalling the first 100,000 copies of the PlayStation version of the game (the PC version was unaffected).

This would prove to be only the first event in a long "relationship" between South Park's creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone and EA Sports, which flared up recently when in 2010 South Park lampooned Tiger's extra-marital affairs with a video game mock-up (which you can see above). An episode from this year also went after EA Sports and its boss Peter Moore over football licenses.

Total Recall is a look back at the history of video games through their characters, franchises, developers and trends.