I’m having serious déjà vu watching the unfounded hype grow around Ultimate Epic Battle Simulator. We’ve all been through this before, and sadly enough, the gaming community — from the streamers who thrive on silly novelty all the way to sites like us — are to blame.
There’s an obnoxious cycle where the whole internet goes nuts for some silly “game” that barely qualifies for the title, taking over news feeds and YouTube channels for weeks. And then the storm breaks and the world moves onto the next big thing.
It happened previously with dumb, barely-playable games like Goat Simulator and I Am Bread, as the games in question somehow racked up thousands of positive reviews because a famous streamer decided to make fun of it one day.
Go back and try to play either of those game after a month away from them — I dare you to! No one in their right mind will actually think, “Man, this is a quality gaming experience right here.”
Seriously? 3,000+ positive reviews for I Am Bread?!?!?
That cycle strikes again with Ultimate Epic Battle Simulator, a “game” that doesn’t really have any business being out of Early Access. It’s more of a tech demo than anything else, letting you make silly battles that will be amusing for somewhere in the neighborhood of 45 minutes — at best — before it gets very, very old.
Here’s the thing though: unlike I Am Bread or any of its bad physics indie cousins, at first, Ultimate Epic Battle Simulator actually sounds amazing.
Santa fighting off a horde of zombies? A horde of Santas (what’s the plural of Santa, by the way?) fighting to the death against a cadre of dinosaurs? Penguins versus legionaries? Kangaroos versus orcs? That all sounds like a smashing good time — if it were actually implemented well and had any actual gameplay.
We can finally re-create that segment from A Christmas Horror Story!
The problem is that Ultimate Epic Battle Simulator is beyond a one trick pony — it barely even has that one trick at all.
More than just “bad,” the fighting animations are barely even there, much less anywhere near on par with other epic battle games. And you don’t really “play” the battles at hand anyway — instead you more so just watch it go down after setting some basic parameters. This definitely isn’t Total War or even any sort of real-time strategy game.
Honestly, it feels more like one of those late 90s screen savers where you set how many animations appeared on the screen and clicked “go.”
Remember how 1-2 Switch was rightfully derided as a tech demo that should have been bundled with the Switch for free? That game has more interactivity and a longer shelf life than Ultimate Epic Battle Simulator.
As icing on the cake, it’s also buggy as all hell. Good luck getting a decent frame rate with your 10,000 chicken horde versus T-Rex army battle simulation.
Somehow the chickens are winning
Frankly, this is a piece of software that solely exists for people to point to and laugh at for a few minutes while browsing YouTube vids, and if it was some freeware novelty that was aware of its own limitations, then that wouldn’t be a problem.
Yet somehow, like Goat Simulator and many other pointless exercises in obnoxiously bad gameplay after it, UEBS is being treated like a legitimate addition to your gaming library.
How are people actually buying into this?
The popularity of non-games of this sort results from a cascading effect: a 20 million-subscription YouTuber finds a novelty to exploit, every single small-time YouTube channel follows suit to get in on the views, the potential players share all those clips, and then all all the game sites notice and perpetuate something that isn’t even worth your time.
Yet despite the lack of worthwhile gameplay, and the fact that the only reason you know about these games is precisely because of that lack of depth, the hype train has already left the station and it becomes a weird badge of honor to say you played that one weird game.
Of course, with so many games across so many devices, demos like this also thrive in a low attention span environment, with gamers looking for something short, silly, and stupid to waste a little time on before jumping into anything more substantial.
It’s disheartening to see a single-punchline joke like this get so much traction, while games that are legitimately worth sinking dozens of hours into get overlooked.
If you really feel like flushing $16 down the toilet just because Markipilier or PewDiePie laughed at how dumb this game is…well have at it, I guess. You can spend the next 20 minutes recreating Game Of Thrones scenes or watch your own Battle of the Little Bighorn and then get sad about your poor life decisions.