An Early ‘South Park’ Video Game Was Recycled as an Olsen Twins Game

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An Early ‘South Park’ Video Game Was Recycled as an Olsen Twins Game

South Park has been on television for a hell of a long time. So long, in fact, that babies born when the show first debuted are now able to legally drink, wildly overdo it, and shout “I thought this was America” while being violently shoved into the back of a squad car.

But perhaps the best illustration of just how crazy long this franchise has been around for can be found in the world of video games. These days, a new South Park video game — such as The Stick of Truth, The Fractured But Whole, or Snow Day! — is typically an elaborate, graphically-impressive product that’s practically indistinguishable from what we see on the show itself.

But early South Park games were a tad less sophisticated. There was a South Park racing game, an unfortunate trivia competition called Chef’s Luv Shack and the 1998 Nintendo 64 game that was just a janky first-person shooter in which players lobbed snowballs at mutant turkeys. Kind of like Goldeneye if Goldeneye was terrible. 

Well, it turns out that there was nearly another South Park game on the market that very same year, produced for the Game Boy Color system. The game would have found the South Park kids battling “a force of evil so concentrated, so pure, that no bastion of goodness and decency can stand against it.”

But even though the side-scrolling adventure game was 100 percent complete, this particular game never saw the light of day. Why? According to Comic Book Resources, creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone had “a change of heart” concerning its release.  

After realizing that most of the people playing the Game Boy Color were young children, and not their more “mature” target audience, Parker and Stone decided to withhold the product, thereby slightly delaying the inevitable moment when South Park would corrupt every ‘90s kid’s soul. The game eventually leaked online in 2018, and, well, from what we can tell, gamers weren’t missing too much.

Not wanting to throw out a perfectly good video game, Acclaim, the company behind it decided to repurpose South Park, retrofitting the design to create a whole new game called Maya the Bee & Her Friends, which was released in Europe. For the U.S. market, Acclaim turned South Park into The New Adventures of Mary-Kate & Ashley

Yup, they replaced Stan, Kyle, Cartman and Kenny with Mary-Kate and Ashely Olsen. Although it’s hard to tell if the 8-bit Olsen Twins were dropping F-bombs or telling people to suck their balls.

None of this is unheard of in the video game industry. Famously Super Mario 2 reskinned the Japanese game Doki Doki Panic because the original version of the game was too difficult. But at least Mario wasn’t a real life 12-year-old subbing in for a character who once fed a bully his own parents’ corpses. 

You (yes, you) should follow JM on Twitter (if it still exists by the time you’re reading this). 

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