GOTY: Goat Simulator 2014 Review

Goat Simulator 2014

Genre: Indie Game 

Platform: PC 

Developer: Coffee Stain Studios

Publisher: Coffee Stain Studios 

Release Date: 1st April 2014


What is there to say about this game… a lot, strangely.

In it’s most basic form, Goat Simulator is a strange blend of everything and nothing. Goat Simulator 2014, the game that for some reason, has taken the world by storm (a storm of goats that is), has been on the tongue of every serious gamer out there. What started out as a silly project between friends turned into the next big trend, the trend of the goat. Question is though, is the game worth the hype, or is it all just silly pointlessness?

Goat Simulator 2014 puts you in the hooves of a seemingly simple goat, kept in a pen with several others, with a big bad city just waiting to be explored. What seems like a normal goat life at first, with time spent wandering the pen, licking everything, changes drastically when the designers of this game clearly decided “This is way too normal. You know what we need? Complete and utter randomness” and so it was done.

Once you break out of that pen – any sheer randomness existing within the world could not compare. All goat hell breaks loose.

The controls are simple and easy to remember, click to kick and head-butt, space to jump, shift to run and the WASD keys to move – the R key is an unusual one, where the game’s signature quirkiness comes in. What does press R do you may ask? Why, it summons goats of course. They fall from the sky like rain, baahing and bleating and dropping to the ground in all of their rag-doll glory. Why does this occur? Well, no reason whatsoever. As you may have figured out by name alone, Goat Simulator 2014 is not the sort of game that goes around trying to force feed reasoning.

The experience really just wants you to be the goat it knows you can be.

And be the goat you can, as you have the chance to uncover a slew of goaty abilities and fun skins to unlock. There are a lot more achievements and challenges in the game than you would have imagined. There are hundreds…thousands even!

I mean, licking a tree can be an achievement, so they’re not all exactly the hardest challenges in the world, but they can range in difficult, such as jumping across the entire map using only the separated trampolines spread throughout, or survive through 5 rounds in the goat arena, which has you scoreconstantly building as you cause mass destruction, engage in bizarre behavior.

You know, general goat-iness.

With each completion of a challenge or by reaching a certain score, you will unlock new items. These are equal parts awesome as they are bizzare- with Goat Simulation, it could be no other way. The game is not entirely centered around said Goat, surprisingly. If you happened to become bored of being a goat, you could instead take the taller path, and become a giraffe instead. The giraffe was clearly not in mind when the game was being made, as it does not fit into any of the inner buildings in any proper way.  This is of little consequence however, as it makes it all the more amusing seeing the lanky creature try to slither in, glitching all the while, limbs and long floppy neck flailing too and fro. A real good giraffe time.

And honestly, who doesn’t love giraffes?

The crazy customization and chaotic character selection doesn’t stop with the giraffe mind you. There is also an ostrich, a “Badass” goat, both a demon and angel goat, as well as the ability to dress them all up with color and different hairstyles. For example, after naming yourself King of the Goats, you are rewarded in game  with a rather terrifying goat’s skull as a crown – that, seeing as you are a goat, is quite alarming upon second thought.

If you want to avoid the hard questions a goat wearing a goat skull as a crown brings to the fray, you can instead opt to have a red “Bieber” like due.  How you may ask? This is accomplished by bringing a mysterious robot perched high in the skies to the sacrificial circle of the satanic goat – why? Why not, is the answer, it’s Goat Simulator after all. On top of all the zany variety, you can keep adding a skin over another skin, so you could wear all of these things at once, a demon goat rocking a halo adorning a skull crown with a red hair swoop to the side, all the while being a shrieking ostrich.

Talk about the American Goat Dream.

You can personalize your goat in the main menu screen – there’s a sentence you don’t say every day. This adds a nice aspect to the game, giving you purpose in wanting to find all the skins that are available, just to see how well the game handles the change. Not well, is usually the answer.

It really ends up being too much goat for even Goat Simulator to handle.

The city is small but packed full with things to discover. Much as the game intends, it is not your average city – not unless your city has water-slides leading to bouncy mattresses, an anti-gravity facility, a goat arena and an endless rally all in one. The city is designed to entertain your need for random events that the game embodies, realism be damned.

Some of the cooler aspects of exploring the city, involve climbing the tallest crane, leaping from its heights, and clinging with your tongue to a passing hang-glider to soar across the land in style. Or, if your dream of heights goes above the mere sky, you can search the city for the Bacon Beacon, bring it to the cornfield, and summon aliens from above to take you to the dark zone that is endless space. The first goat in space – at long last.

But, of course, you are the supreme goat overlord, and space and hang-gliders are far below you, so instead, climb to the top of your tower, and proclaim yourself King of the Goats! All hail the goat!

In retrospect, disregarding the immense hype and excitement behind this game’s unusual existence, Goat Simulator 2014 is broken, frazzled and glitchy – good goat is it glitchy! My laptop can handle Assassin’s Creed: Blag Flag without a hitch, but playing Goat Simulator makes it slow as a tortoise licked by a goat (that’s pretty darned slow).

The great thing about this game is that it’s completely aware of it’s failings, even proud of them in many ways Goat Simulator’s silly acknowledgements help to make the experience as charming as it really is, and you can tell the developers didn’t care whatsoever that it makes absolutely no sense, ideal in it’s imperfections. The game crashes and glitches out every minute or so, but it’s never annoying to have to deal with. Goat Simulator, as if it needed repeating, doesn’t take itself too seriously, and I wouldn’t have it any other way.

It is a mish-mash of broken goat antics, intended only as a joke to make gamers laugh in all of it’s random glory. The game is what it is, and I admire it for that.

Goat Simulator 2014 is an extremely random, insane game that makes absolutely no sense. Its broken and glitchy, and barely works on a regular basis. Despite all of it’s flaws, I love it for it’s truly endearing sense of rambunctious goat pride. I don’t want a highly polished, incredibly cinematic AAA experience from every game, and its nice to take a break from the intense gaming experience for a refreshing bout of madness that doesn’t take everything soseriously. Its the sort of game you can play for a few hours, for the laughter, for the insanity and most importantly…for the goats.

And the insanity that is sure to follow.

Goat Simulator: [xrr rating = 8.0/10]


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4 Comments - Write a Comment

  1. @Gamer Syndrome

    Not that I saw I’m afraid 😛 That’d be cool though.

    One awesome thing though is a goat skin, called “Italian Dinosaur” goat… Basically they couldn’t use Yoshi’s name without risking copyright! So you can fly around and lay explosive eggs! Loved it.

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