To make it in Hollywood, you gotta grow a thick skin. You need to be able to take criticism from fans, friends, and rivals alike, and dish it out in return. From movie sets to award ceremonies, there's always going to be someone looking to take your crown, and make you feel more like a bumbling extra than a true superstar. If this miserable aspect of show-business appeals to you, then hey - you're in luck!

Oh...Sir! The Hollwood Roast is the follow-up to Oh...Sir! The Insult Simulator, and while it makes some  minor improvements over its predecessor the core concept is still exactly the same. You and an opponent take it in turns forming insults out of a shared pool of words and phrases, each hoping to score the most points before the round ends. Points are then subtracted from your enemy's health bar, a new set of words is revealed, and you repeat the process until one of you just can't handle the spotlight anymore.

As you might have guessed, the entire game uses cinema as its central theme, featuring knock-off versions of Marilyn Monroe, Samuel L Jackson, and even fictional characters such as Gandalf to fill up its extended cast. These 'comedy' caricatures are uninteresting at best, and downright insulting in some cases, but it's almost guaranteed to be the only game this generation which features a mash-up of Clint Eastwood and Harry Potter, sothere's that. Given the focus on Hollywood stereotypes it would have been a good chance to really flesh out the weakness system, and improve on the limited roster from the previous game, but each playable character is still as one-note as ever. An aged Ms Monroe can be found at the old folk's home for example, and insults that point out her faded glory will have that much more impact as a result. 

A new feature this time around is that each character can unleash a 'Comeback' after taking a certain amount of damage, which is a nice snappy finale added on to the end of your insult, increasing your overall score. Comebacks are specific to the character, which helps make them feel more unique as a result - but they're never really an elegant addition, just an easy way to tack on some extra points. Speaking of which, another welcome change is the fact that you get a numerical value tied to each component of your insult at the end of every round, which gives far more insight into the scoring system than the previous game. It still doesn't seem to be entirely consistent, but it's at least more obvious to see where you're going wrong.

Aside from that, everything is really just a superficial change. Instead of sipping tea like before, you read your script to refresh your selection of words, and instead of a single-player Tournament mode you have a Career mode, but it's still the same routine of five matches in a row. It's also still possible to play the game in both local and online multiplayer - provided you can actually find anybody through matchmaking. Again this would have been a decent opportunity to introduce some variations on the typical one-on-one battles, which simply isn't capitalised on.

If anything, this version of the game falls even more flat without the quaint charm of the original. For a while the new setting and broader selection of characters feels a bit more interesting, but then you realise the intro to every stage is still exactly the same, the insults themselves still feel sloppy, and the humour misses the mark more than ever before. Direct references to the Weinsteins, 'stained' casting couches, and racial stereotypes come off as tone-deaf and completely inappropriate, especially when being handled this clumsily. You get the unpleasant sense that the game proudly considers itself a witty 'parody' of Hollywood culture, which is really the greatest insult of all. More than anything else it just comes across as utterly humourless, and devoid of the innocent charm found in the original.

Not that we found the previous title to be anything special, and frankly both of these games should have just been edited, spruced up and bundled together given the overall lack of content between then, but it's at least a more lighthearted experience that isn't mired by real world controversy. Any new tweaks The Hollywood Roast offers up isn't worth the trade-off. 

 

Conclusion

Oh...Sir! The Hollywood Roast expands slightly on the original title, but for every minor improvement it makes, it stumbles over a list of missed opportunities, poorly-handled references, and a script that really could have used a few more rewrites. One-on-one verbal battles are still fun enough for the first hour or so, but beyond that it gets repetitious and even downright intolerable. We don't really recommend either title, but if you had to pick one then we'd recommend the original over this tasteless B-movie.