South Park: Snow Day! Review - Screenshot 1 of 4
Captured on Nintendo Switch (Handheld/Undocked)

South Park’s history with video games has been a mixed bag for the most part and the latest instalment, South Park: Snow Day!, had a lot to live up to following the critical success of Ubisoft’s The Stick of Truth and its sequel, The Fractured But Whole. A shift in genre and developer — Question LLC is at the helm here — has resulted in a co-op multiplayer action game that has some promising ideas but is ultimately let down by some significant performance issues (at least on Nintendo Switch) and an unsatisfying gameplay loop.

South Park: Snow Day takes place shortly after the events of The Fractured But Whole, focusing on the customisable New Kid protagonist as they interact with the source material’s eccentric cast of characters. The premise is a lot simpler this time around, however, with the plot focusing on the titular snow day that has made its way to South Park. Eric Cartman is obviously ecstatic about this – he doesn’t have to go to school and enlists the New Kid to participate in a series of Snow-based battles and other shenanigans.

South Park: Snow Day! Review - Screenshot 2 of 4
Captured on Nintendo Switch (Docked)

South Park became popular due to its crude humour, though disappointingly, this game is on the weaker side compared to other video game adaptations and the show itself. There are some occasional funny moments, yet these are a rarity. For us, there were hardly any memorable comedic moments to reference, something we’d never expect to say when talking about South Park of all things!

Most of your time will be spent hacking and slashing your way through a series of playable scenarios. Unsurprisingly, the missions are all set in the now snow-covered South Park, with you defeating waves of enemies to complete mission-specific objectives. For the most part, the levels don’t do much to set themselves apart from one another, resulting in a very generic experience. This is unfortunately exemplified by the game’s poor combat system, which is unresponsive, clunky, and simply isn’t engaging.

Combat is made even more frustrating with the bevy of performance issues we encountered in this version. We can’t speak for other platforms, though the Switch version plays host to significant drops in frame rate, blurry textures, and numerous glitches that can soft-lock your game. This was especially noticeable during the first chapter’s boss fight, as the boss decided to clip himself into a wall, resulting in us having to restart the mission altogether. Frustratingly, this was not the first time this happened, as earlier on a bunch of enemies disappeared entirely, blocking our progress, forcing us to perform another reset.

South Park: Snow Day! Review - Screenshot 3 of 4
Captured on Nintendo Switch (Docked)

Another issue is the game’s strange audio mixing, primarily in cutscenes. The audio doesn’t seem to sync up with what is happening on screen and cutscenes will end earlier than intended. Furthermore, you can get attacked as soon as a cutscene is over, which reminds us of being spawn-camped in competitive shooters such as Call of Duty. At least the voice-acting and soundtrack is what you’d expect from South Park, with Trey Parker and Matt Stone reprising their usual roles as the game’s main characters.

With all these issues, it doesn’t mean that Snow Day is all bad, though. Some gameplay mechanics are interesting. Some aspects take direct inspiration from roguelikes, such as Hades and Darkest Dungeon. At the start of a mission, you can select two passive ability cards that allow you to enhance your attacks or other unique abilities. One of these powerups — a Bull**** card — functions as you’d expect, really: they allow you to activate a seemingly game-breaking ability to turn the tide of combat, however, enemies can also do this to you, but on a more frequent basis.

South Park: Snow Day! Review - Screenshot 4 of 4
Captured on Nintendo Switch (Docked)

Moreover, you can also retrieve additional cards after a round of combat or two from Jimmy. These cards can be found in different rarities, enhancing your abilities more significantly the higher the tier of said card. However, your main point of interest aside from your main arsenal is the two skill cards assigned to 'L' and 'R'. At first, you can equip a fart-jump move that allows you to evade enemies easily, and an area-of-effect heal. There is also a perk tree that you can upgrade by speaking to Mr. Hankey, which further improves your skillset with additional passive buffs.

Snow Day is structured like a live-service game, with the iconic Kupa Keep acting as a hub of sorts for accessing missions, and other useful tools such as a weapons shop. It’s here that you can select the difficulty of a mission, adjust your loadout, and host or join a multiplayer session. There is also the option to play through the entire game solo, however, it became quickly apparent that this isn’t the best way of playing. To supplement the lack of three other players, CPU Allies join you in combat sections, and they barely do anything. Their damage output is extremely low, adding an artificial difficulty due to the way they interact with their surroundings.


South Park: Snow Day! has a lot of potential with some of its roguelike-inspired mechanics but ultimately fails to deliver an engaging experience whether you're playing it solo or in co-op. Combat feels unresponsive, the technical issues are numerous (on Switch at least), and the writing is some of the weakest in the series.