There was a point in South Park: The Stick of Truth—somewhere between performing an abortion and farting on Nazi zombies—when it occurred to me that Obsidian's new RPG isn't just ridiculous—it's also kind of brilliant.
Much has been made about Stick of Truth's impeccable comic timing—and it is impeccable!—but just as impressive is the game's turn-based combat system, which somehow manages to stay consistently fresh and entertaining throughout some 10 hours and 100+ battles. STEP ASIDE, FINAL FANTASY.
South Park's combat system is sort of like a cross between Earthbound and Paper Mario. Your characters line up across from the bad guys, waiting their turns to use attacks and spells, and in order to execute those abilities, you perform mini-quick-time-events that involve pressing buttons in the proper order at the proper times to both attack and block your opponents' moves.
To see what it's like, check out this video of the game's first 13 minutes, which also serves as a good tutorial for Stick of Truth's combat:
Really, Stick of Truth is an excellent game—other than the bugs—and I think it's worth dissecting the strengths and flaws of the combat system. So today on Random Encounters we're putting on our JRPG-Style Turn-Based Game Design Hats and digging into the pros and cons of fighting off elves and homeless people in the South Park video game.