Even Jokes Get Older

HIGH Being able to pee on command cracked me up…

LOW …for about five minutes. 

WTF God, I am really afraid of growing old. 

I see growing old as something scary. While some wait for the day they can kick back, relax and enjoy their golden years, I feel immense pressure to try and do all I can before then. Instead of enjoying life, I’m trying not to let it catch up to me. I’m sure most people my age (and those who are older!) share the same anxieties. I just don’t like the idea of waiting for my body to shut down and becoming a burden to others — these sentiments are shared in films like Make Way for Tomorrow, Tokyo Story, and Amour. Just Die Already seems to take this idea and runs with it in a different direction, which I can appreciate. If only a more interesting experience was attached to it. 

Similar to something wacky and offbeat like the infamous Goat Simulator (the games share some of the same devs) Just Die Already takes place in an open-world city from a third-person perspective. Players choose one of four playable retirees and are set loose in environments full of physics-based elements that can dismember or kill them.

Just Die Already is perfectly competent at what it wants to be — a joke game. Movement is generally stiff, and the triggers on the control pad each handle one arm. Players can grab a variety of things like brooms, baseball bats, NPCs, and the occasional out-of-control vehicle. Players can also ‘go ragdoll’ on command, allowing them to fling around the map without the control of their limbs. The instant respawn button is also neat, as players who find themselves stuck in a certain part of the world — limbless, or in ragdoll — can just pop back on the map again, all fixed up. As one might expect, a lot of the enjoyment is derived from the ridiculousness of the scenarios these oldtimers find themselves in, such as getting an arm cut off after interacting with a lobster tank or getting run over by speeding cars. 

There are definitely a few laughs here and there. I remember one instance when I was running around a Chinatown-esque area and accidentally fell into a river. Not thinking much of it, I tried swimming back to the sidewalk and was promptly torn to shreds by a shark. I laughed, hit the respawn button, and tried to see what other trouble I could get into. 

Unfortunately, no matter where I ended up or what I found myself doing, the kind of trouble served up by Just Die Already gets repetitive — players can expect to lose limbs constantly, and there’s a ton of blood on display. The game tries to alleviate this simple, one-note formula by having players complete objectives on a “bucket list” — basically, a series of missions and milestones like eating food, setting things on fire, or urinating on electrified stuff.

Owing to the open-world sandbox nature of the game, players are bound to complete a bunch of these even if they don’t intend to seek them out, and while I can appreciate goals in a title like this, nothing substantial came from my time with it. Ultimately, I felt like I was watching the same joke play out in the same way over and over again without working towards anything of note. 

Just Die Already is like seeing a meme flood social media. The first few variations of it are funny. Then, as time passes and the same joke keeps popping up over and over, it just gets annoying. Like its characters, the content in Just Die Already starts old and it only goes down hill from there.  

Rating: 2.5 out of 10

Disclosures: This game is published by Curve Digital and developed by DoubleMoose Games. It is currently available on PS4, XBO, Switch and PC. This copy of the game was obtained via publisher and reviewed on the PS4. Approximately three hours were spent in the single-player modes and the game was not completed. About one hour was spent in multiplayer.

Parents: According to the ESRB this game is rated M for Blood, Crude Humor, and Violence. Players can get their limbs torn off while blood flies everywhere. This is definitely not for kids. 

Colorblind Modes: There are no colorblind modes available

Deaf & Hard of Hearing Gamers: Subtitles and on-screen instructions cannot be adjusted but audio is not needed to enjoy this game, thanks to the abundance of visual cues. This game is perfectly accessible. 

Remappable Controls: No, the controls are not remappable.

Cj Salcedo
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