In 2017, it’s hard to say just about anything without pissing someone off, let alone throwing an insult in jest. Me, I’m quite a lax person. If someone wants to call me up on something, or dish out some verbal diarrhoea, I take it with a pinch of salt. A joke is a joke is a joke if you ask me, which is why I was looking forward to Oh…Sir! The Insult Simulator. This game was actually due to arrive on Xbox a short while back, but due to some unforeseen issues, it was pushed back from its previous launch window. So now that it’s here, what’s the aim of the game?
It’s not so dissimilar to a fighting game, only instead of throwing out Hadouken’s you’ll be reducing your enemies health bar with insults. To do this, you’ll be selecting words from a pool of insults to form the most offensive phrase. You guessed it, the better your insult, the more damage you will dish out. Oh…Sir! The Insult Simulator gives you enough freedom to be as funny or witty as you like, but your grammar does have to make sense or else the game will damage your health bar instead. Not finishing a sentence will result in no damage being handed out, so you do have to think carefully. These parameters apply to both online and offline play.
Oddly enough, the funniest thing about this entire experience is the depiction of British people, rather than the dialogue you force upon them. The characters you meet are hilarious in both design and sound, despite sounding a little robotic. Many of your foes will have weaknesses that you can exploit, such as insulting their family or dress sense. If you can suss out what they don’t like to be dragged down for, you’ll earn additional points. New phrases will be added to the pool as the rounds carry on, and if available, you can choose to leave your crafted sentence in place by skipping your go. If you really want an easy ride you’ll need to work hard to keep up a chain of combos, which can achieved by using the same phrase / word in a string of rounds.
Outside of drinking stereotypical tea, there really isn’t that much else you can do. Still, with that being said, the mechanics within are decent enough to hold the gameplay together. Seeing as you and your opponent are sharing the same word pool, as well as having two additional phrases that remain individually exclusive, there’s a tactical edge to the fields of play. On the other hand, I wasn’t totally convinced that the game knew how funny (or insulting) my phrases were. I felt that a lot of the time the game was crediting me for successful grammar, rather than for my insults.
I say this because on several occasions I managed to score pretty high for a sentence that made absolutely no sense. On the flip side, my opponent handed out mass damage with an insult that made no sense, whereas my pretty funny insult (that actually made sense) gifted me with minor damage points. It doesn’t help matters that Oh…Sir! The Insult Simulator is so repetitive, even after just the first hour of play, I was bored out of my mind. There’s just not enough variety within to uphold the intended sense of fun. The word pool rapidly becomes populated with the same phrases you witnessed a few rounds prior, there’s only a handful of levels to enjoy, and the gameplay itself is far from gripping, or at least once the novelty has worn off.
You can indeed participate in tournaments which will unlock additional characters as result, but again the experience falls victim to the above issues. The ability to play against a friend is a nice touch, but I found that bashing each other over the pitiful insults we last used was funnier than the actual game. It has to be said that the game is dirt cheap, so even if you do invest and you don’t bond well with the package as a whole, you’re hardly going to be left bankrupt. Sitting back and looking at the bigger picture, that’s a sad excuse to make for a game that just doesn’t deserve an excuse in the first place. It’s flat on so many levels, from the gameplay right up to the visuals. I have no doubt that some will love this for what it is, but for those that enjoy even a shred of depth in their games, look elsewhere.
Oh…Sir! The Insult Simulator is a decent game for the first hour of play. After that, you’ll have exhausted pretty much everything that the experience has to offer. The visuals are poor, the scoring system is weak in structure, there’s nowhere near enough content within, and outside of the characters and how they address one another, it’s just not funny enough to stand out. Oh…Sir! The Insult Simulator would have found a more honest title if it had been named Oh…Sir! The Repetitive Simulator. Don’t come into this expecting too much, and you shouldn’t be too let down when you get just that.
This game was tested and reviewed on Xbox One. All of the opinions and insights here are subject to that version.