January 19, 2018
After 14 months wiggling around in Steam’s Early Access, Genital Jousting has finally erupted in to a full release product. With the full release comes the game’s story mode and, oddly enough, its debut in Australia after previously being unavailable. So does the game stand tall and erect or does it flop flaccidly and disappointingly?
Content Warning: This review contains depictions of penises and penetration (as well as general crassness).
Let’s get something out of the way. Genital Jousting is a not a game that is meant to be taken seriously, obviously. There isn’t a captivating narrative here, or a tense and deep multiplayer experience – it is a gimmick. The game is a penis-filled gimmick that relies solely on your appreciation of lowbrow humour. Not a fan of penis jokes? Move on. Enjoy a phallic gag or two? Well you better believe this game has you covered.
The game’s campaign isn’t what you’re going to be purchasing Genital Jousting for. Although if you’re anything like me, you’re probably going to start there anyway. The narrative revolves around a self-loathing peen by the name of John. John sets off on an arduous and humiliating journey to find himself a date to bring to his upcoming school reunion. Throughout this journey John may not find a date, but he does manage to find himself (no, I’m not joking). Controlling John you walk (slyther?) throughout his apartment, to work, to the clubs, to the gym, to the park – wherever John’s adventures take him. Your actions and motives are all narrated by a soothing female voice. This narration isn’t only used for humour but it’s also used to explain John’s thoughts, feeling, and as a general tool to help unfold the story.
“It wants to be a stupid little game about humanised penises and I’ll be damned if it isn’t a stupid little game about humanised penises.”
The narrative to the game is fine. It exists, it does what it set out to do and it got me to chuckle a small handful of times. To start dissecting things any further and critique Genital Jousting’s campaign would be the definition of taking things too seriously. It wants to be a stupid little game about humanised penises and I’ll be damned if it isn’t a stupid little game about humanised penises. The humour can be hit and miss although I know certain people who would probably laugh out loud at some of these jokes. There is absolutely no subtlety or nuance to Genital Jousting. If it looks like your kind of game from a distance than that judgement probably isn’t going to change as you get closer up.
Like most penis related things, Genital Jousting is more fun with other people. Local multiplayer is an option to get you and your friends partying with your privates or, and this is the only time you’ll ever hear me say this, you can take your penis adventures online and join some randoms over the internet. Your standard multiplayer game mode will see a small group of peens wriggling around an arena with the goal of penetrating the behind of another peen. You also benefit from having your behind penetrated. At the end of each round you will get points for being the penetratee and the penetrater. After a few rounds are over, the player with the most points wins.
The game is… unique, I’ll give it that. Although I somehow don’t see this ever becoming an eSport. Playing well boils down to wiggling your way in to the middle of two other peens (just like most Friday nights) and depending on who penetrates who, your peen chain can take multiple interesting forms. Although naturally some peens will be less popular than others and won’t manage to score (just like most Friday nights).
Other multiplayer game mode’s are available too. A Date Night mode for a more intimate, 2 player experience and a Party mode where mini-games run wild. For me, both of these modes are more enjoyable than traditional multiplayer.
- Cheap and silly fun
- The kind of party game that will bring a room of people to tears
- Occasional moments of great humour
- Very cohesive with the penis theme
- Humour can be hit and miss
- Singleplayer campaign never really captivated
- Multiplayer can be one-dimensional and overly simple
- Definite possibility to trigger some gamers
A quick disclaimer has to be made about the uncomfortable topic of penetration. As soon as you deal with penetration it doesn’t matter how many content warnings you display or how often you ask your players to consent, somebody is going to find it distasteful. This is understandable too because it can move into really contentious areas.
If you’re able to move past the core concept of the game and accept it for the stupid penis game that it is, then you’re probably in for a bit of fun. I predict that there will be a lot of gamers who won’t enjoy Genital Jousting due to the lowbrow humour with not much else going on. But equally some gamers will love the cohesion and the extent to which they knuckle down and stick with the phallic theme. I definitely lean closer to the former group personally, not really connecting with the singleplayer or multiplayer for very long. Although if I can’t have fun with a game that literally describes itself as a “party game about flaccid penises and wiggly anuses “, then isn’t the joke really on me?