This insult hits more like a paper cut than a deep wound.
On occasion we’ve all felt impelled to hurl an insult at a friend, a coworker, or maybe even a complete stranger, but withhold the urge because, well it’s just the right thing to do. But now long gone are the days of repressing our inner jerks because with Oh...Sir! The Insult Simulator, developer Vile Monarch has given us the tools to be as ruthless as possible in this quirky one-on-one verbal sparring experience. The concept is novel and the characters are over the top funny, but the well ultimately runs dry too quickly due to limited scenarios and dialogue options.
Coming into this, I truly had no idea what to expect from a game that dubs itself an Insult Simulator, but once getting into my first argument, it all came into focus. Players alternate picking words and phrases from a communal pot to form sentences, giving off the feeling of a card game. Each player also has their own personal stash of phrases, displaying two at any given time with the limited ability to randomly shuffle them up for new ones. Using the communal and personal words and phrases, the objective is to reduce your opponent's health bar to zero by crafting and dishing out the best insults possible. Each insult is given a number score which is influenced by a number of factors including exploiting character’s weaknesses.
There are a few modes to choose from, but more or less they’re identical. In single player you can choose an Instant Argument or the Tournament option. Instant Arguments are single scenario battles and Tournaments are a marathon of the games five scenarios. Each of the scenarios has a bizarre and flat out weird backdrop to why you find yourself in a war of words to begin with. I found the zany plots comical and appreciated each had phrases exclusive to that scenario. The problem lies in that each are short, ranging anywhere from five to ten minutes and with only five in total, it won’t take long to see everything it has to offer. Couple that with a limited pool of phrases, and it turns this into something that’ll likely only be picked up a handful of times at most. Local and online play help boost its replayability, offering some laugh out loud moments, but fails to really give the game legs.
What I found to be the strongest aspect was the hilarious characters, my favorite being Mrs. Maggie. Each has a bio providing a comical look at their personality while also giving us a glimpse at what insults will hurt them the most. The art direction fits well with the strangeness of the game. Character designs look great and are paired with amusing voice acting, but the environmental areas are a bit mundane in comparison. A major design flaw is that the text is a bit small and viewing from any sort of distance makes it difficult to read at times. There are also instances of poor choice of font and background colors. This is frustrating especially when a majority of the real estate on the screen isn’t actively being utilized outside of a stagnant image. I didn’t experience this issue in handheld, but that makes sense considering the viewing distance is so small.
Oh…Sir! The Insult Simulator is hands down one of the stranger concepts I’ve ever seen and developer Vile Monarch has taken this as a badge of pride, running wild with the zaniness. The character design is strong and piecing together odd insults has a sense of charm that many wish it had. However limited dialogue options and even fewer scenarios leave much to be desired from a longevity aspect. There is fun to be had especially in a local multiplayer setting, but it still does little to make this more than a paper thin experience.