Updated: November 16, 2020
You all know the remedy for passive-aggressive IT office games - you go home and detox playing first person shooters, and channel all that buzzword energy you accumulated during your work day into some pixilated foes online. But what do you do when even FPS doesn't cut it? We need something, Dr. Emil Schuffhausen style, a little more stringent.
Goat Simulator is the cure to all your ailments. It's a silly, half-unfinished, buggy game with a stupid yet utterly brilliant premise. You're a goat. And you go about the world doing goaty things - which means mostly headbutting things into oblivion. Hm, sounds delicious. So let's savor it.
Goat, goat, goat, do I need to say more?
Yes. Your objective in this game is to be a goat. No more, no less. Enter one of the three available levels, strap on an optional mod (mutator), and go wild. It doesn't really matter which map you choose, because they are all interconnected. I have to say, I was skeptical - but then, I was immersed in its completely silly brilliance. Sometimes, utterly banal things can bring so much joy.
I started exploring. You rack points by performing stunts and crazy things. Get hit by a car, point. Hit a car, point. Make a car explode, moar points. Savage a BBQ party, even better. Perform a wild stunt while wearing a jet pack, O'Blimey O'Points! Different mutators give you different powers - you can roar like a dragon, you can plant watermelon-shaped explosive charges, strap on a jet pack and fly like a majestic falcon, or step into a lore-laden subworld.
The maps aren't big, but they are cleverly designed - every little corner has something that can be destroyed, mangled or ruined. There are all sorts of Easter Eggs everywhere, including a low-gravity center where you can float about while being a goat, a rally course where you try really hard to nail the drifting car, an amusement park, and then some. You can strap on a golf course ball thingie and use it as a machine gun.
Your different stunts will be accompanied by quirky messages, silly score points, on-screen splash animations, and there's of course the even-present dum-di dum-di repetitive low-bass electronic music that only heightens the sensation of surreal, bizarre and monumentally cretinous fun. And if you want to be doubly impressed, you can activate the SLO MO sequence. Yeah! There's even a special Michael Bay award for bigass explosions.
Now, you can also step into a faux MMORPG map, with NPC saying all sorts of funny things, and you can go on little side quests, to destroy medieval robot-like combine harvesters, collect apples and just randomly headbutt things. Your screen will be full of nonsense messages, side quest chatter, tons of D&D shaped objects, and you even have an inventory chest, not that it matters, because your goal is to kick ass. So don't dawdle, just go about being destructive af.
Goat Simulator was released a bunch of years back, but it's a timeless game. It has no higher purpose, it has no real objective. It's like when you're a kid, you're bored, so you go to that abandoned warehouse close to where you live and start throwing rocks at the already half-broken window panes. Since Goat Simulator doesn't take itself seriously, it's a perfect recipe for silly enjoyment when in dire need.
It would be actually nice to see the game ever so slightly re-developed - not to get rid of its many adoring bugs, but to add still more variety. At the moment, the replayability factor isn't very high, so basically, you get a game that will delight you for 10-15 hours, but after that, you will probably start repeating your own stunts and kickassery. Even so, it's a lovely little title. I like. I go away now.