By Jaran Chance
Goosebumps: The Game, a tie-in game to the 2015 Goosebumps film, is on sale in the Playstation 4 marketplace, but should you buy it? The answer is probably not.
Playing like a less sophisticated Nancy Drew point and click game with a completely incoherent storyline, the game is rough around the edges, to say the least. Fans of the old-school series will find a hefty number of references to nearly every Goosebumps book ever written, but are the references really worth spending $5.99? Maybe hopefully is what WayForward Technologies were banking on with this release.
An unsettling number of reboots and remasters are coming forward in modern pop culture. A growing number of these have been banking on sales simply based on nostalgia alone with no thought put into the quality. This game is a rushed out tie-in to the movie attempting to appeal to a niche gaming-Goosebumps fan community desperate for nostalgia.
The game’s story and graphics make it seem like it’s tailored for kids to play but at the same time a kid would have no interest in the game. At least 80% of the game is just text speeding across the screen and mindlessly clicking on everything on screen hoping to find an item to interact with.
The solutions most of the time make little to no sense and take Google or desperate guessing to find, waving a shrunken head at a monster, using a hanger to find a key in the garbage disposal, or backtracking completely to the beginning area.
The story officially only takes a few hours to beat but without any outside intervention players will find themselves wandering aimlessly looking for the next step, all while Slappy the living dummy terrorizes the town.
There are also countless inconsistencies in the story, the only way home for the player is not on the road clearly visible but through the woods where the player is killed by an evil plant man if they don’t have weed killer. Then once through the woods, the player finds a crashed truck on their road which they can’t walk around to get to their house. Instead, they have to backtrack and go through a sewer drain.
The game also completely lacks voice acting or a worthwhile soundtrack. Most of the game is silence or might as well be. The only redeeming factor for the game is the boatload of nostalgic easter-eggs, no matter how completely ridiculous they render the story. It is clear that during the development process, WayForward simply conceded to find a way to jam as many book references as physically possible into one title with no regard for the story or overall feel to the game.
The game, however, is a fairly easy platinum trophy when following a tutorial, so for an easy platinum or a wild rollercoaster-nostalgia ride pick up Goosebumps: The Game.