Garbage Pail Kids Gambles on Nostalgia
1985. Future Pulitzer prize winner, Art Spiegleman, creates a series of trading cards. The premise is simple. The Garbage Pail Kids parodied Cabbage Patch Dolls. Turn the cute and unassuming into something grotesque. For a generation of disaffected weirdos, this reviewer included, the Garbage Pail Kids were a cultural touchstone. Their creator writing Maus—the most harrowing graphic novel of all time—is the least strange thing about Garbage Pail Kids. They have a movie! And a Monopoly game. 34 years later, and the Garbage Pail Kids have a new game. Jago Studios banks on nostalgia, offering misfits of various generations a fun and gross descent into the pail
I read the opening chyron, I swear. I take this seriously. But the plot is functional nonsense. The game occurs post apocalypse. The player is allied with the Garbage Pail Kids. Are the kids the result of nuclear fallout? Unclear. It’s unimportant.
What you need to know: The Tidy Bowler pits the nuts against the dolts. Use the skills of your kids to defeat opponents.
Alright, I’m sorry. That was unclear. Start the game, and you receive two cards. I received a girl with unfortunate armpit hair and a child whose crimes were not defined. But he was in an electric chair, so let’s assume they were severe. Each card has strengths. Armpit-hair girl attacks via her lustrous locks. Your cards are pitted against those of the game’s AI.
You have little control here. The game selects the card you use. You choose whether to attack or restore power. Each character has a health bar. Reduce the enemy’s health bar to zero. You win!
Is This a Pokemon?
Glad you asked. No, but it’s similar. The game focuses on collection. Combat is a means to an end. Win battles and receive more cards. Combat is extremely basic. And not terribly interesting. Collecting and viewing the characters is a blast.
The character design is perfect. Each Garbage Pail Kid looks as gnarly as they did in ’85. They are gross. Their weird strengths are a blast. The collection is the fun.
Tell us About the Loading Screens
I wish you hadn’t asked. They’re endless. Play an hour. 25 minutes of 60 will be spent watching a progress bar. Battles are brief. Each is interspersed with a loading screen. The game is cute and fun. But the wait is tedious.
So Should I Play it?
Sure! It’s a fun diversion. Personal enjoyment will be contingent on how much you like card games. I lived through Garbage Pail Kids and pogs. I was born for this. But if you are looking for combat? Probably not your jam.
Is it Hardcore?
Kinda gross, kinda fun, Garbage Pail Kids’ ticks enough nostalgia boxes to be a solid way to pass an afternoon.