Goat Simulator is the new third-person simulation game from Coffee Stain Studios, the makers of FPS/Tower Defense games Sanctum and Sanctum 2. Goat Simulator caused a lot of buzz leading up to its April 1st release on Steam; there was speculation that the game was an April Fool’s joke, but indeed it is real – and it is glorious.
The gameplay is reminiscent of early Tony Hawk games. You traverse a small world and do tricks and fall over a lot. What makes Goat Simulator so entertaining is its sense of humor. The game is truly buggy; your head can get stuck in walls, you can fall through the map after getting launched way out of the map’s boundaries, and the list goes on. The player does have the possibility to respawn at the starting point at any time via the menu, so if any serious bugs rear their head all is not lost. The novelty factor does wear thin after you have sufficiently explored the map and tried out the various amusements, but there are collectibles and a series of achievements for the achievement hunters out there. To fully complete the game can take a number of hours, as some of the achievements/collectibles require sheer feats of anti-gravity goat control. Collecting the golden goat statues scattered throughout the world unlocks new goats such as Robot Goat (the G2 robot from Sanctum 2), Tall Goat (actually a giraffe) and various others.
Goat Simulator has a place in the Steam Workshop so we could be seeing new maps and new goats generated by users. Shockingly, Coffee Stain has already announced that they will be updating the game with an entirely new map the size of the current one, split screen local multiplayer, new goats and new achievements in May. To explain the thought process behind this Armin Ibrisagic (Game Designer and PR Manager of Coffee Stain) wrote an article for Gamasutra explaining the move from paid DLC to free updates. All in all, Goat Simulator has afforded me many hours of entertainment and is easily worth the ten dollar price tag on Steam. Don’t let the hype/controversy fool you, it’s a legitimate game that is legitimately worth your time and money if you’ve ever laughed at a bugged-out moment in your gaming career.