When the internet sees something it likes it makes a noise until it gets it. And when a one minute clip depicting “next-gen goat simulation” was uploaded to YouTube there was an awful lot of noise.
The result? For just $9.99 you can now pre-order Goat Simulator 2014, the video game that’s set to be more culturally momentous that Grand Theft Auto and Flappy Bird combined.
"It was a completely stupid idea I made up at a brainstorming session at our company," says Armin Ibrisagic of Coffee Stain Studios, the game developer responsible for the title.
"At the start, everyone was like ‘That's the dumbest thing we've ever heard, a goat game, are you kidding me,’ but I was relentless and probably a bit annoying and sometime in January I managed to convince people to give the game a spin."
Coffee Stain Studios then rolled together enough of their collective genius to knock up a rough alpha (a first draft in video game land) and uploaded the footage below to YouTube. The video blew up and now has nearly three million views. Still doubtful? Watch below:
"Apparently the masses are yearning for digitalized goat simulation," says Ibrisagic.
The graphics are solid if not mind-blowing and the story seems to be a bit thin on the ground, but Goat Simulator 2014 more than makes up for these minor shortcomings with mind-blowing gameplay. By which we mean you get to play as a goat, running around and headbutting things to score points.
Ibrisagic says the game was inspired by skateboarding games from a decade back. “The idea is that, instead of being a skater, you're a goat, and instead of doing tricks, you wreck stuff. You get points for breaking a window with your head, but if you manage to break it by headbutting a bucket into the window while doing a backflip, you'll get even more points!”
Overwhelming demand for the game gave the team the hope and inspiration they needed to turn it into a reality and thanks to the benevolence of the internet Goat Simulator 2014 is currently on pre-order for just $10. Although Ibrisagic does note that his personal motivation for making the game was ensuring that people didn’t "pipe-bomb [his] apartment".
The game joins a large number of simulation titles that find a willing audience on the internet despite being best described as niche. Alongside Goat Simulator 2014 willing gamers can also try their hand at the likes of Farming Simulator (Titanium Edition), Euro Truck Simulator 2: Go East, and Street Cleaning Simulator.
“Everyone has their own taste in games - action, puzzle, strategy, etc - but everyone likes to laugh,” says Ibrisagic. “And if Goat Simulator can make you laugh for an hour for $10, then I feel we've succeeded. If you don't like dumb simulation games, then you probably hate having fun."
Ibrisagic does have one final warning though: “The game comes with a disclaimer that it's a completely stupid game about a goat and that you're probably better off spending your tenner on something else, like a hula hoop for example, or maybe 1/5th of an actual real-life goat.”